Ever wanted a flamethrower? Enjoy burning things? Well now you can unleash your inner pyromaniac, with this fun and simple one day project!
In this Instructable I will guide you through all of the steps I used to build my very own coffee creamer flamethrower! This can also be used with things like freshly ground flour, powdered sugar, cornstarch, and baby-powder (which is pretty much just cornstarch.)
So let's get started!
Step 1: The Design.
The design for this project is pretty straight forward. The main components consist of the air system, "the poof chamber", the frame, and the ignition source. The idea is that the high pressure air enters the "poof chamber" containing the powdered fuel, thus agitating and atomizing the powder. The air in the chamber is then forced through the outlet pipe caring the fuel with it. The ignition source then ignites the air fuel mix and voila, a flamethrower!
Most of the flamethrower parts are actually made from PVC pipe. Ok, at this point I know what alot of people are thinking right now lol "How can that possibly be safe!!" or even "Are you kidding me? A flamethrower made from plastic?!?" Well let me explain. There is no pressurized fuel in the system, nothing is even flammable until it leaves the nozzle, the only part that would even be at risk of igniting would be the nozzle, which is made from metal, all of these things should result in a safe-ish plastic flamethrower. The reason I say "safe-ish" is because it is a flamethrower, and it can cause harm to people or property, which leads me to the next subject... SAFETY! Safety is important when dealing with any kind of flame (especially a flamethrower!) So use your head! Don't do anything that could potentially hurt you or the people around you. Be VERY VERY careful not to start any unintentional fires. And overall... Have fun! (safely of course.) :)
Step 2: Tools and Materials.
After buying all of the pipe and fittings for this project, with the exception of the air system components, My total came to exactly $25.19 USD lol. Except for the clear hose and the hose barb, I already had the rest of the air system supplies on hand, however I will include the parts used for it in the list as well. This design can be changed to meet the makers specs, so long as the basic principles of operation remain the same. But other than that, here is a list of the exact parts I used.
For the air system:
1. two 4" PVC end caps
2. 1' length of 4" PVC pipe
3. schrader air tank valve
4. one air tank pressure gauge
5. You can either use a pressure regulator like I have on mine, or you can just use a standard hose barb for the outlet.
6. a short length of air hose.
7. one air hose quick coupler
8. about 10" of 3/8" OD 1/4" ID polyvinyl tubing
9. an air hose blow-gun with a hose adapter on the outlet end
For the "poof chamber:"
1. 1' piece of 2" PVC
2. 2" to 1/2" reducer
3. 2" coupler
4. 1' piece of 1/2" PVC
5. two 1/2" 45 degree elbows
6. one 1/2" by 8" piece of black iron pipe
7. 2" threaded male coupler
8. 2" threaded end cap
MAKE SURE ALL OF THE PVC IS SCH80!!
The frame is pretty self explanatory, and because the parts list is already quite long, I am going to leave out the exact parts used. It will also be different depending on the air system used, the overall size, and the builders frame design preferences.
I didn't need much in the way of tools. Pretty much just a hand saw, a pair of pliers, and a crescent wrench. You will also need things like Teflon tape, zipties, and PVC cement.
Step 3: The Frame.
Essentially all you need for the frame is something to hold everything together. I wanted to make mine with a "rifle like" style in mind. So I used some 3/4" PVC pipe and fittings in the arrangement shown above, to imitate a gun stock. Making sure the the air tank fits snugly inside, I temporarily Duct Taped it in place. Here I would like to mention that when I was first thinking about how this project design would work, I didn't know if my "poof chamber" concept was even sound lol. Before I even semi-permanently put the pieces together I decided to do a test, so I fastened everything together with some good ol' duct tape left over from my Functional Duct Tape Gas Mask project (if you are interested in that project click here!) Once it was proven that the design would work I put everything together permanently (hopefully) with some zip ties. Next I added about a 20" section of pipe out from the 3/4" tee to attach the "poof chamber" to. More on that part in the next step!
Step 4: The "Poof Chamber."
Lol, yeah I know... but "poof chamber" was the best I could come up with haha. It consists of the section 2" pipe, with the threaded cap on one side, and the reducer bushing on the other. Next add the fuel outlet, which is made from the 1/2" pipe. Add the pipe as shown in the pictures above, with the 8" metal pipe on the end for the flame nozzle.
Next I put everything together with some Duct Tape for testing purposes. But since now I know that the concept works, at this point you could put everything together permanently!
Step 5: The Air Supply.
The air system you choose is really just a personal preference. I decided to add an air tank just to make it a little bit more convenient and portable, but you could easily just hook it up to an air compressor.
The line comes from the air supply, which then runs through the air compressor blow gun being used for the "trigger." Then I just ran an air line, made from the clear tubing, into the top of the chamber using a brass hose bard screwed in to the PVC. I would recommend sealing around the hose barb with some JB Weld to keep the leaks to a minimum. I put the barb at a slight angle, my theory was that the angle would force the powder out of the nozzle more efficiently. If you have a better idea for powder dispersion I would love to hear it!
Step 6: Ignition Source.
I choose to use a propane torch for the ignition source. I found this weird holder thingy that worked perfectly lol. I am not really sure what it is, but as long as it holds everything snug it doesn't really make any difference haha. You can use whatever you have on hand, just make sure it's safe.
Step 7: Finishing Touches!
After everything was put together, I gave it a quick paint job and called it good! I am very happy with the results, the only bad thing I have to say about it is that the flamethrower is really only good for about 1 or 2 short bursts. But I think with a little bit bigger of a poof chamber and a bit more air, this could be a pretty substantial flamethrower.
Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this instructable! If you have any questions or comments please let me know, I'd love to know what you think. Happy burning!!
Runner Up in the
Fire Challenge 2017