With its sleek stainless-steel design, world class airflow efficiency and simple no hassle operation, the Solo Stove Bonfire is sure to be a hit with the whole family. Being a wood burning fire pit you know you’re getting all natural, chemical free fire for roasting s’mores, sausages or relaxing on a romantic evening under the stars. If you’re looking for something that is just works, is robust and simple to use this is the wood burning fire pit for you.
After opening the Solo Stove Bonfire, we were pleasantly surprised at the sheer size of the unit. With a 19.5” diameter top opening, there was a more than enough area for a good-sized blaze. Not to mention the fire pit itself gleamed in the early hours of the evening with its stainless-steel design. Speaking of the material, stainless-steel is basically rust-proof making it a great fire pit material especially for those who like to store their units on a porch or patio.
Another great thing about this wood burning fire pit is that there is zero assembly out of the box. Simply open it up, add some wood and you’re ready to burn. We thought the height of the unit was great as well, standing right at 14” tall it wasn’t too far off the ground that you’d risk the wind tipping over, but not low enough that you could trip on it. Plus, it was the perfect height to rest roasting sticks while sitting on a chair or stool, something that is a must for any good outdoor fire pit.
One thing we would have like included was a screen to catch any runaway embers, but there are a lot of available aftermarket screen that do the trick just fine if you’re really worried about it. Another thing to keep in mind, and this is true for most, if not all wood burning stoves is that you don’t want to put them on a wooden deck without a heat barrier underneath them as you run the risk of the heat causing the wood underneath to ignite.
Now, one of the issues that most people run into with wood burning fire pits is the smoke and soot that is put off by the burning logs. The Solo Stove Bonfire eliminates this problem with a unique double walled design. By preheating the air prior to passing over the logs it creates a cleaner, hotter burn that utilizes more of the logs and produced a significantly more efficient burn than a standard wood burning fire pit. The way this works is by passing the cool air over the hot metal and dragging it downward toward the flames before making a U-turn and exiting at the top of the unit. It’s a rather nifty process that seems to do a great job of burning up all the wood and producing hot flames.
One thing we did notice about the flame was that it sat a bit lower than more conventional wood burning fire pits. This served two purposed, the first was to direct more of the heat upwards and to produce a better flame profile. The second to was to burn more of the wood the first time around to prevent any big hunks after the flames have gone out. We did find though that when it came to adjusting the logs doing by had with a glove was nearly impossible. We opted to some Epica Fireplace Tongs instead, this were pretty handy to quickly grab a log and push it into a better position. If you want some dual-purpose items a good roasting stick will also let you maneuver any stubborn logs as well.
Another common problem that the Solo Stove Bonfire addresses is the constant clogging of the air vents. To prevent this the bonfire has a built-in ash pan that catches all but the finest of ash particles and prevents them from getting trapped in the bottom vents and reducing the overall airflow to the unit. Another handy use of the bottom air vent is to prevent built up moisture and rainwater if the Solo Stove Bonfire is left outside. Many of the lower cost options eliminate the vent holes to save on cost, but are constantly water logged and rust out in a heat beat.
Great Construction – Stainless Steel Fire Pit
Looking at the top of the Solo Stove Bonfire you can see the rather robust 304 stainless steel ring the encircles the entire unit. This ring is “deep drawn with precision tooling and hand polished” according to the manufacturer. While were not entirely sure about that, it does do a great job of keeping the heat funneled upwards and being made of stainless steel is extremely durable and resistant to the elements. Conveniently enough it also is easy to detach and flip over for simple storage of the unit, something that is great for those areas where there is a little less space.
In terms of getting the unit burning, it was about as simple as it gets, we just stuffed a few pieces of old newspaper, a few pieces of fatwood fire starter and a couple of larger logs in haphazardly. Afterwards we just threw in a match we had lying around and before we knew it we had a cheery blaze in our backyard. We even had guests over that evening and they commented on how great the unit looked, but that could have been because of the free beer, who knows.
Either way the Solo Stove Bonfire is a great addition to any backyard with its eye pleasing looks, durable stainless-steel construction, smoke free operation and great flame capabilities. This will for sure go down as one of the best, if not the best wood burning fire pit on the market. If you want to compare a couple of additional options or explore some propane fire pits before buying you can check out or guide to the best fire pit for a bit more detail on what to look for.