How to Make a Flame Torch on a Stick

Updated March 16, 2017

Depending on the size of a bonfire, a large fire starter may be necessary. You can build a flame torch using household items that is useful for lighting bonfires. Torch sticks also make a handy survival device if you find yourself lost in the dark and you do not have a flashlight on hand.

Nail a clean tin can, such as an empty soup can, to a sturdy stick, such as a broomstick. Be sure the can is secure on the end of the stick and that it does not wobble when you carry the stick.

Cut a piece of cotton fabric so that it fits snugly into the tin can on the broom stick. Use all-natural fabric; do not use fabric that contains chemicals or synthetic materials.

Ball up the cotton fabric and soak the top half in kerosene. Do not saturate the cloth; it should not be dripping with kerosene. Be careful not to spill the kerosene on yourself or in the area where you intend to use the fire stick. Consider using Tiki torch oil or paraffin lamp oil.

Place the kerosene-soaked cotton fabric into the top of the tin can. Light the cotton rag with a match. Hold the torch away from you and anyone else near you. Be wary of your surroundings and keep the flame away from flammable objects.

Douse the flame into a bucket of water or sand to extinguish the torch.


Fire is dangerous. The torch is meant for outdoor use only. Use extreme safety and caution when undertaking any tasks involving fire. Take into consideration your surroundings and weather conditions before attempting this task. Dry conditions, windy weather and general misuse can lead to disaster and potentially life-threatening situations.

Things You'll Need

  • Sturdy stick
  • Cotton fabric
  • Tin can
  • Kerosene
  • Matches
  • Bucket of water
  • Hammer and nails
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About the Author

Based in Traverse City, Mich., George Lawrence has been writing professionally since 2009. His work primarily appears on various websites. An avid outdoorsman, Lawrence holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in both criminal justice and English from Michigan State University, as well as a Juris Doctor from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, where he graduated with honors.