Concrete Tiki Rocket Stove




With a little creativity and a lot of recycled materials, you can make this Tiki Rocket Stove for under $40.

A rocket stove is an efficient cook stove using small diameter wood fuel which is burned in a simple high-temperature combustion chamber containing an insulated vertical chimney which ensures complete combustion prior to the flames reaching the cooking surface. (Taken from Wikipedia)

The Tiki rocket stove came from the idea of combining a Tiki torch with a stone statue for a one of a kind back yard garden stove. It features a metal combustion chamber, deep charcoal concrete mass with a Volcano rock cooktop (of course).

Materials List:
Plastic bucket from local bakery - $1
1 Empty soup can – Free
1 Eight inch scrap metal tube –Free
2 Plastic paper roll end caps from sign shop – Free
1 9 x 12 wood board  1 ½ thick – Free
1 Counter top board – Free from estate sale
1 Bag CHENG Outdoor Pro Formula Mix Charcoal color - $30
1 Bag Volcano rock – Free leftover from gas fireplace insert
2 Bags (120 lbs) of  concrete mix - $8
20 Drywall screws
1 Roll Duct Tape
1 Gallon of water

Table saw
Jig saw
Tin snips
Pry Bar
Wheel Barrow
Rubber Gloves are a Must (your hands will thank you!)

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Step 1: Create Tiki Face - Nose and Forehead Form:

• On the front of the bucket, measure 2 to 3 inches from the top and draw the nose and brow to use as a guide.

• Use the soup can to locate the opening for the mouth and draw this to illustrate the face.

Step 2: Step 2: Construct Main Form

• Now, transfer your face drawing to the 9 x 12 -1 ½ thick wooden board.

• Cut the board from the top and remove the nose section.

• Center the face board on the inside of the front of the bucket, drill and screw the plastic end caps to the bottom of the bucket and under the nose.

• You should be screwing the bottom plastic paper end cap through the bucket into the counter top board.

• Duct tape is used to smooth out the face and fill the gap edges of the face board.

Step 3: Step 3: Construct Metal Rocket Chimney

• Cut a 8" long section of metal tube 3" in diameter. One end will fit into the plastic paper end cap mounted to the bottom of the bucket.

• Measure, cut and fit the soup can to serve as the mouth/loading chamber. The open end should fit snug onto the plastic paper tube end attached to the face board.

• Test fit the chimney and mouth, adjust as needed.

Step 4: Step 4: Mix + Pour + Cure

It’s important to note that this project is created upside down, The Tiki head is filled with Volcano rocks and then the concrete is filled around the chimney pipe until the bucket is full.

• Add concrete to the wheel barrow.

• Mix 1 cubic foot pack of CHENG Outdoor Pro-Formula together.

• Slowly add water. Mix until there are no dry clumps.

Fill the form:
• Work the concrete between the face board nose. Fill evenly around the nose and chimney tube.

• Pour Volcano rocks into the bottom layer of the bucket.

• Evenly fill concrete to the top.

• Allow to cure for 4 days before de-molding.

Step 5: Step 5: De-mold Bucket

• Tilt the bucket on the side and remove the screws that hold the face board on.

• Remove the bucket from the countertop board.

• Work the concrete out of the bucket gradually. Turn the bucket over and lift the bucket off of the concrete. I used a pry bar to release from the bucket and ended up splitting the back in order to remove. The nose proved to be a challenge to separate. Use a screwdriver along the edge to remove.

Step 6: Step 6: Detail and Finish

• Tongue Fuel Shelf.

The Rocket chimney must have a fuel shelf mounted in the lower opening to work properly.  Measure and cut a long tongue shape out of metal. Bend to fit. Be careful not to close the bottom of the chamber off as it needs to stay open to allow airflow to the fuel.

Step 7: Step 7: Start Small Fire Test Burn

Let your rocket stove cure in the sun for one to two week before the first test burn to make sure it’s good and dry! Caution: Adding extreme heat to any rock material having moisture in it could explode if not completely dry.

Be careful, Be Safe, Have Fun! Get Your Tiki On!

Concrete and Casting Contest

Finalist in the
Concrete and Casting Contest

Be the First to Share


    • CNC Contest

      CNC Contest
    • Teacher Contest

      Teacher Contest
    • Maps Challenge

      Maps Challenge

    29 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    This is really neat. I will try to scale this up a bit so I can use 6 inch stove pipe. I'll let you know how it goes.

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    I like that idea. I'm finding the three inch pipe works but think it could be better with more room. Just keep your mass around it thick to keep heat in. T


    3 years ago

    This looks interesting... Gonna try that.

    Di Immortales

    3 years ago

    very cool! I plan on building one for backyard cooking. these stoves are supposed to be VERY efficient. this might also be good for a camping trip. only one problem with that though, it would be very heavy to carry around


    4 years ago on Introduction

    I'm a mason and have made manufactured stone. This is pretty awesome, I like the porous look but I wonder if you wanted it smooth and put some vibration to it would everything stay intact?

    How large a bucket is this? I'm thinking about a 4 gallon? I have some kitty litter buckets from a friend that I would be ok to sacrifice to the Tiki god. (sorry, couldn't resist.) They could then go in the recycle bin.

    I'm guessing a cast iron pan on top would work well. I have a lid for mine so could do some thin crust/flatbread pizza, quesadillas, etc.

    Crushed glass instead of the rock would look cool on top. You can buy 'beach' glass at the craft store so it doesn't have sharp edges.

    I also have a 'collection' of rocks from digging up the lawn to make a garden. That would be a fun way to use the prettier ones.

    3 replies

    Reply 4 years ago

    You should offer The Volcano Goddess Pele, Mystic Pork. Just lay it down on your Highway escape route before it's covered in flowing Lava.

    I have made wood fire hot enough to melt glass, and thin aluminum, soooo unless it is glass meant for this I would think not, BUT you could use it in other places while making this.

    Also an issue is rock in general. At the very least.. heat the rocks you are going to use a ew times in hot fires. If the rock is porous and has water in it (river rock can be nasty, fatal even) if can do the steam expansion and shatter. I had a sliver go through a pants leg when I was a kid. And no water was spilled on the rock.

    spark master

    4 years ago on Introduction

    This is a nice project I will make on in the spring. I made mine with a metal 5 gallon food oil metal can. That thing can throw a 2 foot plume of flaming fun.

    Hi. Really enjoyed reading about your project! I made a tiki burner myself some years ago. Got into rocketstoves after that, pizza ovens and now Rumford fireplaces. Check them out, maybe you can come up with a funky design for these awesome and superior fireplaces. Cheers, Thijs


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Just wanted to say congratulations on being a finalists in the Concrete & Casting Contest! This was a fantastic instructable love the materials you used and felt I could make this myself! Good luck! :)


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Very funny character, is put on a flower bed at the cottage


    6 years ago on Introduction

    LOVE this! Did you remove the top end cap? I would think the heat would melt the plastic if left in.

    1 reply

    6 years ago on Step 5

    Rubbing the inside of the bucket with petroleum jelly (something I learned in sculpture classes) might have made it possible to remove the concrete without destroying the bucket. This doesn't always work, and sometimes breaking the suction destroys the mold anyway, but it's always worth a try.

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the tip. Sounds messy. I think the end caps made it so hard to remove.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Have you done any tests to see how hot it gets up to? This would be great fun to use to cook small bits of meat or fish on--sort of like a fondue only with fire!


    Really love it!

    And it seems so easy with your instructions.

    Thanks for sharing it! =)