Introduction: Safe Tiki Torch / Water Bottle Light!

Picture of Safe Tiki Torch / Water Bottle Light!

At an Order of the Arrow (OA) ceremony  I was at a scout got too close to a Tiki torch and his head dress caught the flames, it was quickly put out only one feather went up. But it got me thinking there must be a way to preserve the ceremony but take out the danger of fire near these expensive Indian head dresses. To that point: 

A few years back, a company named Guyot made a product called firefly a Nalgene bottle light. They have since stopped making it. I and my son have one as do a quite a few scouts in my troop. They looked really cool coming across a parade field at night in complete darkness. I thought what if you attached one to the end of a Tiki torch stick. I did this last summer for camp and it was a hit. The two OA leaders loved it, they used throughout camp for night events.

So given they cannot be gotten, I decided to make one. 

Also you could make this into a camp / deck lamp if you just cover the base, another idea was to place foil in the bottle to deflect light. 
Other items can be put in the bottle shrunken heads or alien action figures for Halloween.  Yellow and red work well, try it out and have fun.


Bamboo Tiki Torch.
Nagline Bottle  (Yellow Red and Blue seem best)
1/8 inch Jute Twine
Dot It light ( Home Depot Black ~$7
Clear plastic sheet can be any type you only need about 4x4 inches 

 2 inch Hole saw (drill bit)
Utility knive

Fist take Tiki torch apart, leave the bottom wire  loop in place. 

Step 1: Ruin the Nalgene Cap

Picture of Ruin the Nalgene Cap

If you have an old one where the tether broke use that otherwise you are going to ruin yours.

Size up the lens of the Dot It, It is about 2 inches (mine is 2 inches, if it is not the same light type measure . Remove the tether from the Naglene bottle, drill out center of the cap to create a 2 inch hole for the light.  Use a utility knife to clean the edges. 

Step 2: Assemble the Light Source

Picture of Assemble the Light Source

Use electrical tape on the edges to attach the Dot It to the outside of the cap. Take the plastic sheet and place it in the cap. Turn the light on (depress it) and attach it to the bottle (with water) for a trial run if you tighten it it should not leak.

Drink the water, or water the plants and move on to the next step.

Step 3: Attaching the Bottle to the Tiki Torch

Picture of Attaching the Bottle to the Tiki Torch

Take two lengths of jute twine one about 1.5 feet the other about 3 feet. Tie the 3 foot piece around the neck of the bottle in a tight square knot leaving plenty of extra on both sides.  Second take the other piece and tie it around the body (fat part) of the bottle (only) as tight as you can again end in a square knot sorry no picture. Remove this piece from the bottle and continue to the next step. 

Step 4: Putting It All Together.

Picture of Putting It All Together.

Shoot for gold and fill the bottle with water, turn the light on and put the plastic in the cap (cut most of the extra if you want).
Assemble the bottle and place it upside down in the Tiki torch  Lace the ends attached to the neck of the bottle through and around the bottom wire loop to secure it. Now take the loop you tied tightly around the body of the bottle and loop it over the bottom of the bamboo stick and bring it up to the bottle pushing it over the bamboo slats the harder it is the better you light will be held. Move it to within about 2 inches of the top. If it is tight it will not move. 

You now have a lighted walking stick or a ceremonial Torch. 

Imagine the looks it got as this glowed coming across the field at night, I was stopped many times to show it off (one scoutmaster blatantly stated he would steal the idea). 

Someone in my troop suggested spray painting the stick to make it look like Gandalf's magic staff. It may be possible to disfigure the bottle into another shape using a heat gun but I have not tried this. 


motherprune (author)2014-06-14

Thats astonishing...

cobbledbeard (author)2014-06-13

Its tremendous

mousepaper (author)2014-06-12

Thats very good

Christopherhenson88 (author)2014-06-11


gorgeddamp (author)2014-06-09


illrings (author)2014-05-26


airbugger (author)2014-05-22

Thats grand...

williamsjavellana (author)2014-05-19

Thats phenomenal...

headlymph (author)2014-05-08


tealrink (author)2014-05-08


grousebandit (author)2014-05-05

Thats amazing

harechubby (author)2014-04-28


clapfilk (author)2014-04-07


cheshirecorn (author)2014-04-04


NumerologyAnswers (author)2014-04-03


spongeraffle (author)2014-04-02

Its interesting :)

workexaminer (author)2014-03-28


Mariska Botha (author)2013-09-04

This is Amazing!!

BunnyRoger (author)2013-09-03

Awesome idea, DEFINITELY gonna try this.

Amanda Culbert (author)2013-09-02

I love this hey, would look amazing in all different colored lights around the garden and brilliant idea on taking it camping.

MAApleton (author)2013-08-29

Oh wow, thanks for sharing, looks so so cool. Would love to use this at parties.

My Diet Area (author)2013-08-03


Theigners (author)2013-02-24

Looks amazing, thanks for sharing

mounces (author)2013-01-27

Awesome! You could buy different shaped and sized bottles, too; even make a wire or mesh (potato bag?) carrier and handle--that would be awesome for carrying around at a camp site! Great, great idea! Thanks

redpepper237 (author)2013-01-26


puskarich (author)2013-01-25

How much battery life do you get out of the LEDs?

old_alex (author)puskarich2013-01-25

I have not recorded the battery life, the boys used them every night for a week no issue. I have it at home, while I am not having using it much due to sub 10 degree temps it is working and very bright. Looking on the web the Sylvania Dot-it claims 100+ hours on AAA batteries.

If you can find the Firefly, it has one more feature that the Dot-it does not it dims, I love that thing, camping / backpacking once a month I replace the batteries about once a year.

normanschneider (author)2013-01-24

Thanks for sharing. As a Scouter, I too will blatantly capitalize on this great idea... but give credit where it is due.

Definitely a cool, fun and safe way to spread light during a Scouting ceremony.

About the only thing I would improve upon is a switch in the lid to turn on/off the light without having to replacing the cap. This would avoid spilling water, which would hamper the effect and where refilling may not be practical in certain situations.

audreyobscura (author)2013-01-22

That looks great, what a cool idea!

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