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Old 09-06-2012   #11
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,097
Thanks for the tips Ken. I'm gunning for a big one, so I will have to balance heat output to be able to make the larger water volume hot.

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Old 09-06-2012   #12
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 390
Our big tub was about 10' in diameter, filled to about 26" of water( this is chin height for a sitting adult. It was made of 8 pieces of 4' X 2''-6" X 1/2" plywood panels reinforced with 2X4 at the edges and lined with a large blue poly tarp. A series of ropes provided tension. It seats around 20 adults if you really like each other..

The heater was made from a 55 gallon drum on a 3/4" plywood base cut to 6" over the drum diameter. Cage of wire fencing was placed around the drum and filled with 6" cobble. This provides enough ballast to prevent the drum from floating and acts as a heat shield for bathers. The top of the drum was cut down to about 8" above the water line and fitted with a door, 6" flue with damper and a 2" dia. intake vent. The intake vent was made from a 30" length of black iron pipe with an 90 degree elbow at the top. The length of the pipe was designed to provide fresh air at the lowest part of the drum, the elbow prevents it from falling in. A 12 volts blower was attached to the intake. Set the stove at one edge of the tub so you don't need to get wet while feeding it.

This set up was filled with lake water (at about 43 degrees F) via a gasoline pump and hose. Heated to 106 degrees F in about 14 hours of constant fire, used about 1 1/2 cords of pine wood over a 5 day period. Most of the wood was burned in the first 14 hours.

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Old 09-06-2012   #13
Abron Cabron
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Santa Fe, Nuevo Mexico
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 594
My boss from the rafting company had the best portable hottub/backwoods bathtub i've ever seen. its a simple, tried and true... but its all heavy stuff.and you need to have a welding connection to fabricate a snorkel stove unless you want to purchase one...

This would be perfect for Baileyfest, or any car camping river trips..... all you need is a trailer for the equipment, firewood, and water..

its a Snorkel stove in a Large horse trough.... the one I sat in at a guide rendezvous here in NM was pretty awesome. It fit 10+ people,(depending on the size of the trough) and was plenty hot...but it was also capable of getting dangerously hot, If it heated for too long,and the stove was not shielded so one could burn the shit out of themselves if they were rough housing, or slipped or leaned over to catch the floating bottle of whiskey.... in other words perfectly safe fun for a bunch of inebriated shrooming rafters....
(IIRC no one was hurt by the tub, only by the sight of the boss man dropping trou and displacing a lot of water when he got in ....)
a quick google search had lots of pics and ideas...

Here' s one of many pics i found for a concept of what it looks like.

Snorkel stove for wood-fired hot tub

btw, i really hope to make it up for baileyfest next year. I was planning for it this year, but it didnt work financially... its been one of those summers...
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Old 09-06-2012   #14
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 390
You could modify a 20mm ammo box to look a lot like that snorkle stove...

It looks like they are using a simple interior plate as a baffle for the fresh air intake. You could cut a hole in the standard lid for a flue and slice it in half for a hinged door. I like the simplicity of the sliding door as an air vent.

You could get some of the telescoping stove pipe sold here, I think it would fit inside the ammo can.
Cabela's Sheepherder's Stove Pipe, Outfitter Tents, Stoves, & Accessories, Hunting Outfitter's Camp, Hunting : Cabela's
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Old 09-06-2012   #15
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,727
Those Snorkel fire boxes have tubes at the bottom that act as both andirons and allow water to circulate where the coals are resting. If someone had the welding skills to add those to a 55 gallon drum, fitted with a top with a lid and a chimney and a feeder door, it would heat huge.

I love the hay bale idea, and by using a lower layer to shrink the diameter at the foot well, it would allow a deeper pool while somewhat limiting the total volume of water.

Ian the showdown pump would only be utilized for the initial filling; shouldn't tax it any more than running the pump. Didn't you say it could handle 30' of head? we only need 5' or so.

Also that pole has a 30 amp 220 outlet. a lot of heat can come out of that. Maybe we could salvage parts from an electric water heater and go from there.

I love the simple torch on a bent pipe idea. I've got one of those weed burner attachments that never gets used.

Combine a couple of these devices and that water will be hot by mid afternoon, then leave it on electric mode for set it and forget it goodness.

Now whose got some jet ideas?...

(seven two 0)-298-2242
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Old 09-07-2012   #16
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 390
Jets? Have every other person wear swim fins!
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Old 09-08-2012   #17
Vail, Colorado
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 112
For what its worth: my buddies from New Hampshire used an old (clean) radiator and just tossed it in the fire with a recirculating pump and hot water pumped into an old horse trough. Pretty simple really. As far as jets? Serve beans with every meal
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Old 09-08-2012   #18
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,097
Awesome info! I've got a lot more to work with now. I like the idea of jets.
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Old 09-09-2012   #19
sh$t show voyeuor/host
Barnard(Marshall), North Carolina
Paddling Since: wen?
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 285
what about an old bucket boat for the tub? I'm sure it will be a little worse for wear afterwards, but there is always an old pos bucket around that needs more work to float than its worth. I have several if you wanna come to my house and experiment/make one for me.
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Old 09-17-2012   #20
Ft. Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 139
Best makeshift river hot tub ive seen:
On a middle fork trip my friends put a tarp in the back of their boat pulled the boat right upto the sunflower hot spring waterfall (flows right into the river) only took a few minutes to fill the boat up with fresh hot spring water and away they went down the river with 2 people enjoying the hot tub and one rowing. Definitely one of those "whatever the rich people are doing right now it can't be better than this" moments....

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