34 Responses to “The Swedish Log Candle”

  1. richard pearson says:

    Ken, I got this example a few years ago from a Pathfinder leader in southern Oregon. I have used it with great sucess many times for outdoor meetings along the edges of our outdoor church. Had 8 going at once with a bonfire at the side. Great fun. I’m on facebook and pictures are in my albums of “academy days”
    Have been spreading this example for a few years now ! God Bless — richard

  2. brenda howe says:

    I absolutely love this log candle!!! I’ll be showing it to my Grandkids and Great- grandkids but I’ll surround it with rocks for safety!!!

  3. Claudia says:

    This is amazing. I can’t wait to try.

  4. Kevin McGee says:

    Thanks, Ken. You can also split the log with an axe, put the pieces back together leaving some space between them, then build a small fire on top. The coals drop down and ignite the inside of the log. For cooking, a pot can be placed directly on top. In Scandinavia they use this method for building fires in the snow.

  5. Ken says:

    Good input Kevin. I’ve recently learned of yet another method of construction by bundling equal length wrist sized dry kindling by wrapping it at a lower level with vines while placing tinder in the middle toward the top to lite. In each case the fire is elevated off the ground and fosters a usable fire within. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Connie says:

    I love this ideal..can’t wait to try it. Thanks for posting!

  7. Mac says:

    Cant wait to try it. would be fun for the grand kids

  8. Mike Doolan says:

    I have a magazine for loggers here in NH, i think my readers would love this idea, i would like to place this article in my magazine if possible. thanks…Mike Doolan

  9. Ken says:

    Thanks for asking Mike… yes, that would be great. Please include credits. ;-)

  10. Joe says:

    Had some big branches knowcked down by Sandy. Now I know how to use them. Thanks

  11. Matt says:

    Ive done this using leftover wax from large candles as a fuel. Works well

  12. Cindy says:

    I like the idea of the log but frown on accelerant as its dangerous. I would try putting fat wood in the middle or something else. I also like the idea of a candle, kindling or branches to start it. If using an accelerant its dangerous and many people have been severely burnt that way.

  13. Tom says:

    I love this and can hardly wait to try it, if we ever have our burn ban removed here in Texas. About how long would a log like the one pictured be expected to burn?

  14. Ken says:

    I did not let it burn completely that day, but I would imagine 45 minutes to an hour.

  15. Georgia says:

    I love this idea and can’t wait to try it! Thanks…

  16. Kevin says:

    This is an awesome idea! I’m from northern Oregon but currently live in Colorado. This would be great to cook up some fish in my trusty cast iron skillet this spring/summer.

  17. Dave Hartford says:


  18. Tim Delaney says:

    @Kevin McGee I agree. I saw the technique used in Norway, when I attended a Boy Scout jamboree in 1975.

  19. Sandy Inscoe says:

    Awesome! Can’t wait to try this!!!

  20. Tayde Castillo says:

    I love the idea, love fires and this is great, I will secured the bottom with rocks and sand around to be on the safe. Thanks

  21. Donnine Susan says:

    I cannot WAIT to get back to my Swedish ROOTS!

  22. Dirk Emde says:

    Unless you have a ripping chain in your saw, good luck with the cuts. Also, how do you keep the log from flying sideways? Is it in the ground a few feet?

  23. Ken says:

    I had no trouble cutting down the log. It had a flat bottom and is in itself very stable. Perhaps splitting the log and regrouping the wedges would work better in your case, however, that would be less stable in the end.

  24. Lori Bright says:

    I saw something very similar on Facebook a few months ago. It was presented as a one log cooking stove! They used tightly packed newspaper stuffed into the cracks and formed a wick, this way it can be prepared ahead or stored for emergencies.

  25. Jay&Lori says:

    Love this idea, can, t wait to try it, thanks

  26. Carolyn's Tips! says:

    Never use gasoline it will blow up when you ignite it. Use diesel instead. But never Gasoline, I know from experience it is very dangerous!!!!!

  27. Ken says:

    I used gasoline in this illustration. Let it sit for a few minutes first, and don’t flood it, just douse the edges in the center. Diesel would work well, but gasoline when used sparingly is not deadly… use discretion.

  28. rob turner says:

    there is also another method I was shown a few years ago. if you can find a dead tree, pine in northern bc is what I have used. you cut an 18 inch block off and if the tree has been dead for a couple of years it willhave 5 to 6 inches of rot in the center and be quite dry. clean out the rot from the center with a stick or axe handle, it usually comes out fairly easy. light a small campfire and place the block upright with the hole on top of the fire. the fire will work its way up the center of the log, in a short while the flame will reach through the top and burns like a large candle, hence this is the famous “Yukon Candle”, Rob.

  29. Michael J.W. says:

    I cannot use a chainsaw. So I thought something less aggressive for myself and also my wife to use would be a bandsaw. I know that the cut on a bandsaw is smaller, but I wouldn’t see how that should cause any issue when lighting the log.

  30. dannbo says:

    Yeah i can see this one ending in the paper…people getting burnt or fires being set You might want to point out that it should be placed on a flat bit of ground (unlike your third picture)Suggest maybe a hole a couple inches deep the circumference of the log,then packed hard ito the ground with soil and/or stones. When you put flammable liquid on the log you don’t want it running out down he side of the log

  31. sharon says:

    what if we were to take the stump of some trees already gone and used them would it not work the same and take care of the stump problem while having a campfire too

  32. Dwaine Gipe says:

    Easier way to do this. Take three pieces of round wood a minimum of five inch diameter. Tie them together with a piece of wire. Start fire in the bottom. This one works exactly the same as the one shown here. It was shown to me about 1950 by the Sweadish Boy Scouts at a Jamboree. It will not fall apart. It will glow and provide fine heat for cooking. They can be snuffed out and reused. It is better because it has less reflective surfaces and was designed and used to save wood.

  33. David says:

    I have an idea, if you are scared of gasoline, dont use it. If you cant use a chainsaw, dont do this project. If you want to tell others how their project isnt safe after they just showed that it is, leave the site.

  34. Mike says:

    If available pine knots are a great ignition source.

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