How to Make a Concrete Fire Bowl




Introduction: How to Make a Concrete Fire Bowl

About: Discover woodworking, concrete, LEDs, home decor and DIY projects you'll love.

This was one of my most exciting projects I have worked on. With the little experience I have, I love concrete work. I will give you all the steps I took to create this awesome fire bowl.

The bowls I use I'm not sure where you can get them. I snagged these from my office after a lunch part. They are plastic catering bowls. I believe any bowls could work.

Step 1: Making a Concrete Fire Bowl, Here Is What I Used

Here is the list of products I used.

- Gel Fuel for the fire

- Black Marbles Instead of Marbles you can use this Fire Glass Onyx Black

-Sakrete high strength concrete mix

- 2 bowls of your choice ( the bowls I used were 12inchs for the large bowls and 10 inches)

- Constructions wire mesh

Tools & Miscellaneous Items Used
- Hand shovel

- Rubber Mallet

- Palm Sander aka Sheet Sander

- Sandpaper 80 grit and 220 grit

- Any oil should work (I used motor oil)

- Weights or large rock (hold bowl in place)

- Tin Snips

Step 2: Mixing the Concrete

1. I would recommend using a separate mixing bowl. I used the same large bowl, but the scratched from the shovel transferred to the form.

2. Add concrete mix into a bowl and add water. Be sure to mix the to concrete well. Do not over water it.

3. Next, you can oil your large bowl, to provide an easier release.

4. Add concrete to the large bowl. Then sit the smaller bowl in the form and press down. You'll want to do this so you can see how much concrete you will actually need. Once you find how much you need, you should clean the smaller bow. Dry it off and oil it up.

5. Place the smaller bowl in the concrete then place weights on top. Anything will work that is heavy enough to prevent the bowl from rising.

6. Vibrate the bow using a sander and a mallet. The goal is to get the bubbles to rise to the top and escape the form.

Step 3: Removing the Form

After three days of sitting, I figured it was time to remove the concrete from the bowl.

To be honest I was blown away at how well this came out. It was like glass.

Step 4: Sanding the Bowl


The top edge was a bit rough. To clean get it up sanded it down using sandpaper.

80 grit to knock it down some and 220 grit to smooth it. The higher in grits you go with smoother it will be.

Step 5: Making the Rock Support

To support the rocks or in my case the marbles. I used some construction wire mesh.

I shaped the mesh to sit in the bowl. The mesh can be found at your local hardware store. I use tin snips to cut the mesh down to size, and my hands to shape it.

Once you cut this stuff it can be very sharp. So be sure to bend it over and to make it safe for handling.

Step 6: Light It Up

I am using Gel Fuel for the fire

This one last about 6 hours of burning time. I usually just smother it to kill the fire for reuse.

The process

1. Remove the lid from the can, then sit the can in the bowl.

2. Add the mesh

3. Add the rocks/ marbles (leave the center open) the fire needs to breathe.

4. LIGHT IT UP!!!!

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    16 Discussions

    Very inspiring:) can you tell the weight of it? I planning to build something like this but with some kind of wood pedestal.

    Very good, easy and a good size, thanks for sharing. Just to be a bit of a party-pooper, think before you burn fuel in a closed area, as the burning gives off carbon monoxide which will kill :(


    1 year ago

    Excellent work

    Nice work! Very ingenious and creative. May I suggest an alternative to the wire screen. You could use "Pearlite" to partially fill in the bowl to take up some space underneath the glass marbles. Pearlite is used in potting soil to increase moisture retention and even though it is very light and looks like Styrofoam, it will not burn. It may shrink a bit from heat but not much.

    This might be cool too if you used different shapes; like a square bowls/pan instead of both being round, or perhaps two square with one at a different angle than the other, (sort of diamond inside of square). Just be sure all of the concrete has hardened before trying to remove the inner form since different thicknesses might harden at different rates. Just an idea.

    If you make another one, pull the concrete out of the bowls right after it sets, and then sand the top flat. Concrete that has not hardened completely is much easier to sand.


    1 year ago

    Hi!! in my country I can´t get gel fuel, do you think it will work with alcohol?

    1 reply

    You can easily make gel fuel at home with alcohol. The is ton of guides all over the internet.

    Go to a restaurant supply store. They have a huge range of plastic and stainless bowls. If you get a 22" and an 18", between them you'll make a very nice concrete bowl for fire or birdbath or sink.


    1 year ago

    I've been looking for one this size in the stores with no luck. Your idea is perfect! This is definitely something I can do. I also like the idea below of the plastic sheet over the top of the bowls and under the weights. I do not relish the idea of polishing and sanding concrete. I can see it now with 1/2 inch glass mosaic tiles around the side for a bit of color. Thanks for the great idea.

    gorgeous finish, could you place a plastic cutting board on the top , under the weights, to make the lip smooth?

    Looks great! Nice work with the concrete!

    brilliant result buddy, top work

    What a gorgeous bowl !


    1 year ago

    It came out very gorgeous and sophisticated!

    1 reply