Just because you're Jewish doesn't mean you should abide by every fire code. You see, all humans enjoy watching the hypnotic dance of a tall flame. Also, Hanukah was the celebration of fire. Sure, people call it the festival of light, but that light came from an oil-burning, logic-defying fire. So, let's build one of those.
Here is the first photo of my Extreme Menorah. It should be done in a day or so and when it is, it will be able to have 9 separate three foot tall flames. Of course, they will burn out in 30 minutes or so, but you know what they say. The fire that burns brightest burns out fastest.
Here is the Extreme Menorah burning brightly on my front lawn. Even on a 20 degree night, this thing drew a crowd. The flames can be powered a few different ways. Toilet paper soaked in kerosene is a great choice. the flames will be about as high as this photo and they will last for 30-45 minutes. They do produce quite a bit of smoke though and are difficult to put out.
For the photos I used paper towels soaked with charcoal lighter fluid. My experience with photographing flames is that charcoal lighter fluid produces a slower, licking flame that photographs well.
Here is how to make your own Extreme Menorah:
You will need (supplies)
- 1 eight foot section of 4 by 6 lumber.
- Have the dude at home depot cut two 8 inch pieces and on 4 inch piece off of it.
- 2 twelve inch lengths of 2 by 6.
- 9 Round gas vent caps (I found these by the hot water heaters and vent ducting at home depot). I chose these because they looked like they would contain the fire while supply the flames with enough air to make them burn brightly.
- 21 wood screws (1 1/2 - 2 1/2 inches long)
- Wood glue.
- If you're smart and have Home Depot do the cutting you won't need a saw for this.
- A drill with a screwdriver bit is really handy.
How to make it.
I chose the 4 by 6 inch piece of lumber because it was the biggest size that Home Depot could cut. I wanted this menorah to look chunky and cool, not flimsy. To make the menorah, I glued the two 8 inch pieces on it as legs and the 4 inch piece on the center as a riser for the Shamash (that's the candle that is up higher than the others). I also screwed the pieces to the 4 by 6 just for insurance.
I added the two 12 inch sections of 2 by 6 to the bottom of the feet so that menorah would remain steady while flames were shooting out of the top.
I glued and screwed the vent caps onto the top of the menorah. The vent caps are upside down with the screw pierced through the top of the vent (now positioned as the bottom) and into the 4 by 6.
I let the menorah (technically it is a Chanukiah) dry and then when dusk fell, I was ready to let it burn!
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