Hot Dog Cooker / Solar Oven

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Introduction: Hot Dog Cooker / Solar Oven

This Hot Dog Cooker / Solar Oven is simple and easy to make. We have had it reach temperatures over 170 degrees Fahrenheit on a cloudless 80 degree day. Today is a pretty cloudy low 80s day and the oven still was over 115 degrees.

Step 1: Materials

Materials

  1. Pringles can or other cylindrical container.
  2. Sharp knife, make sure you can handle a sharp object or ask for help. Kids - ask a responsible adult for help.
  3. Straight edge, we used a cut piece of aluminum laying around but a ruler would be good.
  4. Sharpie marker or other marking pen.
  5. Skewer
  6. Hot Glue
  7. Drill / Drill Bit

Optional

Magnet, Plastic Wrap, Tape

Step 2: Procedure

Empty contents. Fat Cat had no problem eating the chips in our cans to "help" us out.

Using a straight edge draw a rectangle on the side of the can. We used this side because there were lines already.

Use your knife to cut the rectangle out. Save this piece for later.

Using your skewer, poke a hole through the plastic lid.

Take skewer out and put plastic lid on to bottom of can.

Mark can where hole should go on the bottom of the can.

Drill hole with drill in bottom of can.

Put skewer through the lid, the center of can, and the bottom hole.

Step 3: Stand

Use the rectangle piece we cut out to make a stand. This will help keep the oven from flipping over.

Take the scrap piece and run a bead of hot glue along the center of the piece. Do not put on the shiny side.

Place the scap piece to the can. Try to make sure that when the solar oven is set down that it will be angled at the sun and not straight up or straight forward. We eyeballed it.

If you want to be exact, use a protractor to determine angle. Different parts of the world get different angles of sunlight and an oven angled properly will get more direct sunlight into the oven causing higher temps.

The stand also allows for different angles. Just rotate the can on its side. Experiment with it and you will see.

Step 4: Extras

We like magnets. So we put a magnet on the bottom of this solar oven. It helps keep it in place and allows for many different angles. We had it hanging on the back of a metal chair out in the yard. Just seemed to be the thing to do lol.

We added plastic wrap to one to keep heat in. We need to experiment to see which oven cooks hotdogs better.

Step 5: Success?

Today was a very humid day and cloudy. When we brought the oven up from the basement, the thermometer read around 70 F after about 10 min it was up over 115 F. Outside temp was 82 F.

I don't know if that was much of a success but I know on a sunny day we had the thermometer reading over 170 F on an 80 F day.

Remember to keep adjusting / moving can as the sun moves.

Step 6: Our Step by Step Video

Great Outdoors Contest

Participated in the
Great Outdoors Contest

BBQ Contest

Participated in the
BBQ Contest

Green Design Contest

Participated in the
Green Design Contest

7 People Made This Project!

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162 Comments

0
brandt e
brandt e

7 years ago

It heats up great! I used magnets for an adjustable base.

temp_-616369329.jpg
0
brandt e
brandt e

Reply 7 years ago

it only got to about 130ºF but I think it can get hotter. I got it so clear by stretching it out with tape

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

Thanks for making and posting!!

How hot did yours get? How did you get your plastic so clear? That is how it should be. Great idea with the magnet!

0
Klappstuhl
Klappstuhl

Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

Isn't the heat somewhat bad for the magnets? Just wondering.

0
capjbadger
capjbadger

Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

You'd have to get them a LOT hotter to hit the Curie point of the magnet to ruin it. :)

0
sfcyang
sfcyang

8 months ago

Can you use a morton salt can for this?

0
turtlewax
turtlewax

Reply 7 months ago

line it with aluminum foil, shiny side toward the sunshine and you can use almost any container. Be sure to add a clear cover to help trap the heat inside for faster cooking or you will be waiting a long time.

0
AnsgarWright
AnsgarWright

1 year ago

(22) Pringles Solar Cooker - YouTube is a video I made on an improved version of a Pringles can cooker, but I use different method that improved the efficiency by increasing sunlight gathering and better heat retention... I find in watching the different versions that some builders of the project did not catch some of the basic concepts of solar cooking...

The amount of sun you capture has a big impact on the results, that is the reason for the 'wings' addition.... The use of glass bottles retains heat better than a plastic film...you might check my temperature results of different things cooked in the Pringles can cooker.

I have a Pinterest board on solar cooking experiments that aims at the cheaper end of solar cooking... mostly improvements on funnel cookers that can be built for $50 or less... with decent results of a couple hundred degrees.

As a school/scouting type project I don't think adding a small jar is too much to add and it does improve results. and one can do away with the stick and poking holes in the top and bottom. I used the extra layer of Pringles can to hold open the reflector wings because they were handy and worked well, one could use other ways, like plain cardboard... the wings need help to hold a focusing shape. You might try both versions and measure results in basically the same sun conditions.

0
LeslieBarker
LeslieBarker

1 year ago

My brother's supposed to be doing this but it's 35 degrees outside, how in the world is he supposed to do this?????

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Reply 1 year ago

Hi. As long as there is sun, the temperature will go up. Good luck.

0
ethanlikesSTEM
ethanlikesSTEM

2 years ago

Wow, that a really neat project! I'm going to use that for my school project! :D

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Reply 2 years ago

Thanks. Let us know how it goes.

0
KittyA4
KittyA4

Question 3 years ago on Introduction

How long does it take the hotdog to cook?

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Answer 3 years ago

Cook time depends on the weather and individual preference. I would guess on a sunny day over 70F should take 10 min. The dogs are already cooked so one just needs to heat to the temperature one likes.

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Answer 3 years ago

Today was a very humid day and cloudy. When we
brought the oven up from the basement, the thermometer read around 70 F
after about 10 min it was up over 115 F. Outside temp was 82 F.

I don't know if that was much of a success but I know on a sunny day we had the thermometer reading over 170 F on an 80 F day.

Remember to keep adjusting / moving can as the sun moves.

0
tavenl0312
tavenl0312

Question 3 years ago

how hot does it have to be outside about 82 diggress

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Answer 3 years ago

"Today was a very humid day and cloudy. When we
brought the oven up from the basement, the thermometer read around 70 F
after about 10 min it was up over 115 F. Outside temp was 82 F.

I don't know if that was much of a success but I know on a sunny day we had the thermometer reading over 170 F on an 80 F day.

Remember to keep adjusting / moving can as the sun moves."

0
JeffJ128
JeffJ128

Question 4 years ago

i made a solar cooker and it didnt work what do i do need advice

$1,000,000

0
Cats Science Club
Cats Science Club

Answer 4 years ago

Could you load a picture? What I have seen with my students is they tend not to aim the opening at the sun. Using the shadow to line up the opening with the sun is one suggestion. I'll have more accurate suggestions when I see it. I hope you get it working.