The following is a true story, only the names have been changed, to protect the guilty.

Saturday, November 23, 2013


Everyone is always talking about reduce, reuse, and recycle. My latest project was the re-purposing of a refrigerant tank to make a small wood stove. I needed it for my abandoned car turned fort, that I named "The Wreck". I chose the refrigerant tank due to ease of access. Where I work, there is a small dumpster full of them and lots of other scrap metal to cobble together a small, FREE, wood stove.     
Not bad for FREE,     I added a stove top for cooking
  When completed it's  big enough for small  ice shanty or fort. I wont go into details as to sizes of anything since I never even used a tape measure other than keeping the legs the same length and the stretch out of the stove pipe take off. Also the size of the refrigerant tank will dictate the dimensions of all the necessary modifications. All that is needed for the most part is an angle grinder and a welder.
view of the outlet damper
  I cut and rolled my 3 inch take-off, but you could use a piece of stove pipe purchased at Home Dump or My nards. A hole-saw is also an easy way to make the inlet and outlet dampers but if you use your imagination something else might also work.
After finishing it, I stuffed the whole thing with wood and threw it in a big bonfire just to make sure everything would be burned off before I installed it in a small enclosed space.
 Make sure the tank is empty before plasma cutting or welding. Refrigerant is not flammable but it can produce a toxic deadly gas know as Phosgene when extreme heat or flame is applied.
I think the gutter is a nice touch
    The stove worked great after I got it set-up Friday afternoon. The flue pipe was made with a short piece of 3 inch snap-lock and a chunk of gutter down spout I found in the area.  Soon my boys and I will be back for a warm, sheltered picnic.
All that's needed is a door that I'm making out of some military surplus canvas bags,and we'll be toasty warm


  1. SO rad! My boys and I have built a fort, but this...this is magic. Lucky sons.

  2. Yeah I never had anything like this when I was a kid. We started building crummy forts and then usually gave up. Now I'm just a grown up kid with money and a vehicle to do stuff like this. Soon my boys and I will be going to the wreck for our first real picnic inside, my youngest has expressed interest in sleeping in to my ears