Friday, April 24, 2009

The simplest charcoal powered furnace for casting

simple casting furnace that uses charcoalsimple casting furnace that uses charcoal

This may be the most simple furnace for melting zinc there is. That is other then just a big pile of coal. I melted the zinc using a charcoal chimney that is normally used for starting a grill. I have always loved this product for starting my grill beacuse I always have newspaper around and don't need to buy fluid but now I am even happier. I just used a small can for the crucible and a larger can for a lid.

I pinched the can a little to make a nice pouring spout.

Zinc ingots are available at

I don't belive this is hot enough for aluminum but i did not have any on hand today.


  1. Amazon won't pay affiliates from NC anymore because my lovely state decided to charge them sales tax on any sales made through a NC affiliate...isn't that crazy? Amazon has a lawsuit against the state of NY to try to combat this.

    Dave D

  2. That is wierd since that is not where they are located. You would think the location of the buyer and the location of the seller would be more relevant. in any event the non taxed nature of interstate online business with these big sellers is a little bizarre. Too bad about the affiliates not working for you. I tend to get a few sales a month. not too much money but not nothing. It is much better then adsense for this site. My other page does better with the adsense.

  3. Yeah that's pretty easy alright. I love those charcoal starters, you save so much on fluid over the years, plus you can just set it and forget it. What are you using the zinc for?

  4. thanks for looking Eli. I use the zinc for to cast sculptures. I would love to use bronze like you show in that link but I am not quite up to it yet. Zinc is nice in that it is very cheap <$2/lb where i get it and has a fairly low melting temp. I also work a bit in aluminum but it is a little less atractive in my subjective opinion. in any case I am looking forward to looking through your blog.
    happy casting,

  5. when i need zinc for casting i visit an old scrapyard near here and gather up broken bits of door handles and mirrors from 1950s cars.
    you have to clean it up a bit before casting by premelting it and skimming out the chrome plate but you can gather a lot in a short time.
    be sure to get permission first.

  6. Another great source for zinc is post 1982 pennies. Just separate them and melt them, the copper is thin enough that it either dissolves or oxidizes and floats to the top. It ends up being about $1.80 and you don't have to worry about a >$100 order for free shipping.

  7. as a new visitor of your site,i am happy to all your inovations and teaching.but i have a great problem about zinc property.i have a brass chipes of 30-70(30%Zn and 70%Cu),when i wanted to recyle(remelt) large amount of smoke is given off from the furnace and remains only red copper.What do you think is the reason and what do you suggest me to do?
    thank you


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