Ever since I remember, we’ve been using stainless steel washing machine drums as makeshift fire pits. They are great to have around during long summer nights, perfect for making s’mores and relaxing with friends.
If you don’t have an old washing machine that can be re-purposed for this use, your best bet to find a stainless steel washing machine drum is heading to a recycling site, junk yard, or garbage dump. Finding one isn’t that complicated, you just need to make sure that it’s what you’re looking for. Once you have it, all that’s left is to alter it slightly to make it work.
If washing machines are hard to find in your neighborhood, then dryers can also be used. While it’s a great idea to re-purpose your own, it’s probably better to try and find older appliances at a junk yard instead of destroying your own. Many times, I’ve found the drums themselves in junk yards instead of washing machines. They are quite common.
Most of the time, I’ve simply used it in the backyard, by creating a small area where it could be used. The best idea, so that you don’t start any backyard fires, is to center the drum on a some concrete slabs of stone, ensuring fire safety. You can play this out anyway you want to. I’ve found that using old bricks with concrete arranged haphazardly will usually look pleasing, no matter how you lay them out.
Once you’ve got the drum situated in your backyard, there are a number of little hacks that you can use in order to make it more convenient. While BBQs are great, it’s nice to grill stuff in a fire pit. S’mores, hot dogs, hot potatoes, you name it, then it can be cooked with fire. Placing a nice stainless grill on top of the drum will allow you to flame-broil a number of different foods.
Propping your drum up is also a smart idea. It makes it more convenient and allows the ash to drop to the ground. You can use a bunch of different way to attach legs, but bits of pipe and a steel bike rim will work really well, as Dr. Qui did for his backyard incinerator.