Cast iron wash pot as a fire pit
swampstander
12:38p, 12/22/12
swampstander
4239 posts, joined 09/16/2003
I have a big cast iron pot. It is about 2.5 feet in diameter. I played with the idea of making a fish fryer out of it but to be honest, I just don't eat a lot of fried fish. I have a friend that has several wash pot fish fryers I can borrow anyway.
I came up with the idea of using it for a fire pit. A quick google search came up with the site below. The only thing that bothers me (and also kept me from using it for a fish fryer) is that it has a short hairline crack along the rim.

Do you think the heat and subsequent expansion would cause the crack to spread and the pot to eventually fail?

Cracking open and spilling logs on my patio is 100 times better than spilling 15 gallons of hot grease but still not desirable.

http://www.cowboycauldron.com/fire-pits/image-gallery/#!prettyPhoto

Mine has about 4in legs. I would just set it on those as opposed to making the tripod to hang it.

IMG >
George08
12:56p, 12/22/12
George08
791 posts, joined 09/11/2010
I think you'd have trouble getting enough air in there to fuel the fire.
crag
1:08p, 12/22/12
crag
36321 posts, joined 10/04/2005
If you are worried about the crack expanding, why not drill a hole at each end of the crack and fill the holes with jb weld?
Ag65Son
3:39p, 12/22/12
Ag65Son
353 posts, joined 09/29/2005
It will work as a firepit, no problem.

The last time I was in Red River, NM during spring break, there was this place called "The Black Crow Coffee House". Out in front of it, they had a big old cast iron wash pot like you're describing that the proprietors would fill full of firewood & burn every evening. Surrounding the firepit/wash pot were big, pine tree stumps you could sit on & drink your coffee, watch the fire burn & roast marshmallows. The owners looked like a bunch of old hippies, but they were super nice. They'd bring out their guitars & other musical instruments & have a good ole jam session around the fire, if i wasn't too cold & snowy. I took my guitar with me one evening & joined in. It was a blast!
swampstander
5:19p, 12/22/12
swampstander
4239 posts, joined 09/16/2003
I decided to go for it. Been burning since mid afternoon. Still holding together.

IMG >
AgBass01
5:20p, 12/22/12
AgBass01
4864 posts, joined 01/16/2003
Looks good!
bam02
5:58p, 12/22/12
bam02
3628 posts, joined 01/22/2004
If you're worried at all about it splitting and spilling logs/coals you could easily build a simple frame out of steel or something more permanent out of stone/masonry.

Just a thought.
crag
6:09p, 12/22/12
crag
36321 posts, joined 10/04/2005
I tell you what, that looks a lot cooler than the ones you buy at the store!

I'm sure something like that is not cheap though.
Finn Maccumhail
6:12p, 12/22/12
Finn Maccumhail
9440 posts, joined 08/20/2007
Given the size/weight of that bad boy, if you're going to use it solely as a fire pit you might want to look into drilling some drainage holes into the bottom because that thing would be a bear to move around and dump out rain water.
Agmechanic
7:05p, 12/22/12
Agmechanic
1688 posts, joined 12/10/2007
We have one at the deer lease and one at the ranch. Been using them for years as fire pits. Get a piece of expanded metal to throw across the top and you've got yourself a grill. I drilled a hole in the bottom of both of them to let water run out if you forget to flip it over.

Edit: just looked at the picture. The ones we use are smaller and have feet welded to them so that they stand off the ground about 1'

[This message has been edited by Agmechanic (edited 12/22/2012 7:06p).]

[This message has been edited by Agmechanic (edited 12/22/2012 7:07p).]
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