A “hobo stove”(or rocket heater) is an incredibly versatile outdoor cooking tool you can build quickly and easily from scraps you most likely already have around the house. It's small, lightweight, and because it's made from scraps it's easily disposable! If done right, a Hobo stove can be an amazingly efficient outdoor cooking equipment that cooks at insanely high temperatures (you can fry an egg in seconds using only a handful of twigs). Building this tool is a great asset to add to your survival skills and is deceptively simple.
How to Build a Homemade Hobo Stove from Household Scrap
Materials Needed to Make Your “Hobo Stove” Rocket Heater
- 2 tall cans, about 6 inches across and 10 inches tall (we used paint cans)
- 1 piece of aluminum flashing, about 3 feet long
- Utility knife/box cutter/knife pliers
- Tin snips
- Permanent marker
- Measuring tape
Step 1: Create Feed TubeMeasure and then cut a piece of flashing that’s 8 inches long. Using the edge of a table or a square edge, bend the flashing into a square or whatever shape you want. This is the feed tube for your heater.
Step 2: Cut Hole for Feed TubeWith a pen, trace the edge of your feed tube on the side of the can you will be using as the base. Use your knife to cut the hole in the side of the can by pressing the knife firmly down and through the metal. Once your hole is cut, fit your feed tube into the hole about 1 1/2-inches deep and adjust fit as needed.
Step 3: Create Stand TubeStack your two large cans and measure the distance from the base to the top. You need to allow 1 inch for flow, so subtract one from the measurement of the total height. Measure and cut a piece of flashing from that measurement and roll into a tube. This will be the stand tube.
Step 4: Cut Hole for Stand TubePlace your stand tube on the base of your top can. Then, trace and cut a hole in the base of that can the size of your stand tube.
Check out the full guide to make a “hobo stove ” from scrap here on DIYprojects.com.
Eager to start with your hobo stove plans? Watch the video below from DIY Projects to find out.
There are more than a dozen different versions of rocket stoves available on the market that have a huge range in price. Many of them are big, bulky, and heavy. And let's face it, when SHTF and you need to be light on your feet, the last thing you're going to want to carry is a 30-pound stove with you. The great thing about a hobo stove kit is with a little innovation, you can DIY one from some common household items. If you've never made one before, you should give it a try. You just need a spare time and some scraps!
Care to share about your own version of a DIY hobo stove? Tell us in the comments section below!
Editor’s Note – This post was originally published on January 10, 2014, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.