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Old 01-01-2012, 03:12 PM   #1
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New propane campfire - fire pit

I have just started a new project and thought you might like to see.

The history on this is that in the past we have really enjoyed campfires at our site (usually Disney's Ft. Wilderness) however Last time we went camping our friends borrowed our fire pit. So after many hours shopping we found a unit we liked at lowes that used a 20lbs propane tank( the misses really liked this as there is virtually no smoke). This unit was made of what the manufacture called "in organic material". After the second night of use the outer ring began cracking so we returned it.

I looked high and low and could not find one that we liked so I decided to build my own. I used 14ga 304 stainless and built a stand. I have ordered a 24" stainless burner that is rated at 150k Btu with a regulator and Venturi in addition to all the hardware needed to make flames. I will also be adding white and light blue fire glass to add an appealing look to the unit.

The stainless is being sanded by hand to create the milled effect found on the stream and will be given a good coat of Sheila shine weekly.

I intend on using a 20lbs tank to run this and will likely only use it on a low setting as it will otherwise be to hot to sit around.

Any input you might have would be great.
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Old 01-01-2012, 03:38 PM   #2
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Looks interesting. Would be interested to hear how it works out. I am not sure what you are going to be doing woth the glass though.

Keep us posted and thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-01-2012, 04:51 PM   #3
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Did you consider "Campfire-In-a-Can"? Just curious what you may have thought about it. Previous posts have been positive about it.
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:59 PM   #4
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The glass will be placed in the top of the unit just like the attached picture minus the black surround.

I did not consider the campfire in a can due to not knowing about it and I certainly would have tried it however I have already spent money toward this so I will need to use it or the misses will be mad and I might have to sleep beside this at night to keep me warm. Lol. A second factor would be 64k btu vs 150k btu.
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Old 01-02-2012, 06:43 PM   #5
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TTY because I need to know if I am making any mistakes that might cause me to loose my eyebrows.
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Old 01-02-2012, 07:52 PM   #6
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The glass will be beautiful; 154K btu should produce quite a flame!

Look forward to pictures when complete.
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Old 01-02-2012, 07:59 PM   #7
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Realistically, I don't think the BTUs really make that much of a difference. If you think you're going to warm up by a propane fire, you're going to be disappointed. The BTUs you're talking about will shoot a flame at least 6' into the air. When you adjust down to make it safe and realistic looking you will get very little warmth out of it except on very calm evenings.

My Campfire-In-a-Can will shoot a flame 6' up too. (can't remember BTUs.)

These are all for visual effect only.
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:28 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by dznf0g
Realistically, I don't think the BTUs really make that much of a difference. If you think you're going to warm up by a propane fire, you're going to be disappointed. The BTUs you're talking about will shoot a flame at least 6' into the air. When you adjust down to make it safe and realistic looking you will get very little warmth out of it except on very calm evenings.

My Campfire-In-a-Can will shoot a flame 6' up too. (can't remember BTUs.)

These are all for visual effect only.
So if I am understanding this correctly propane does not create a lot of heat? Should I consider some other alternative to this?
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:39 AM   #9
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So if I am understanding this correctly propane does not create a lot of heat? Should I consider some other alternative to this?
No, not necessarily. Propane and natural gas fires get their radiant heat by heating up ceramic logs. They just don't radiate heat like natural coals from a wood fire.
It's been my experience that the propane campfires heat up their "logs" (or whatever) very little and you're relying soley on the flame heat, which dissapates very quickly into the air.

If it is a calm evening you'll get some warmth if you crowd close to the flame. If it's breezy, not so much, unless you face into the gas exhaust.

These are more for effect than warmth. We like them on evenings with short stay time, raining, etc. You can safely sit with them between the chairs under the awning.

Just don't expect too much.
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Old 01-03-2012, 10:05 AM   #10
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We do a bunch of camping in cold weather up here in Michigan and use a 3 burner propane heater that really does the job. Doesn't look very good but after a few glasses of wine we don't care.
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Old 01-03-2012, 10:13 AM   #11
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We do a bunch of camping in cold weather up here in Michigan and use a 3 burner propane heater that really does the job. Doesn't look very good but after a few glasses of wine we don't care.
OK, that's a heater though. We're just talking about a lazy yellow flame that looks a little like a natural fire. I'd bet you get some pretty good heat out of that unit.
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Old 01-03-2012, 07:24 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by dznf0g

OK, that's a heater though. We're just talking about a lazy yellow flame that looks a little like a natural fire. I'd bet you get some pretty good heat out of that unit.
Well I completely understand your points however for my sake I hope you are wrong. Otherwise I will have a very expensive lawn ornament. Lol

Thanks again!
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:10 PM   #13
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Well I completely understand your points however for my sake I hope you are wrong. Otherwise I will have a very expensive lawn ornament. Lol

Thanks again!
Is the Missus looking for the heat output of a wood campfire...is that what you're saying?
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:22 PM   #14
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Yes she is minus the smoke that usually comes with it. She loves camping but hates to smell like a camp fire.
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