Introduction: DIY Simple Vortex Burn Barrel

About: Interested in Medical, EMT, Nursing, Fire/Rescue, Moulage, making my own equipment, Computers, Electronics, etc.

Creating a burn barrel can be very useful for getting rid of rubbish and trash, if legal in your area, but mostly for yard debris and garden scraps that need to be dealt with.

The hole process (get it?) is quite simple and doesn’t take much effort at all. We paid $20 for this old barrel from a scrap yard. Not a bad deal. The next step is to simply create holes but I wanted something that would burn quite efficiently. so I opted for slits along the bottom of the barrel and nothing more.

This actually worked out quite well as you’ll see in the video at the bottom of this page.

Step 1: Got My Dremmel

First thing I did was grab the Dremmel, set it to the highest speed, attached a metal cutting wheel and went to work.
For each opening I marked a line with the dremmel, just to give me somewhat of a guide as I was cutting. No I didn’t measure or mark it out, this was just free hand and eye-balled. No need to get overly complicated for a project like this.

Step 2: Cut the Slits

This actually went quicker than I thought it would. The disk cuts through quite easily at the high speed setting but eats them down very fast. I made about one and a half openings with each disk.

Step 3: The Pattern

This is the pattern. The idea is to open these up into “scoops” that will capture and draw air up into the barrel as it heats up. This design should create a vortex.

Step 4: Making the Openings

To begin opening the holes, I hammered a few times on one side. This created a space for me to get a tool in to pry it open. First I pried up, flipped the tool around and went down.

This created some very nice pockets or “scoops” to capture the air flow and create a spinning wheel of doom! Muhahahahaha.

Step 5: Final Result

The burning is quite thorough. This is from three large piles of wood that needed to be thrown out. Nice and efficient.

Step 6: The Video

Sorry about the horrible cuts in this video.