How To Build A Smoke Free Fire

by Julian Husseini on Oct 11, 2020

How To Build A Smoke Free Fire

A surefire way to arrange firewood in your Solo Stove fire pit.

The Cone. The Log Cabin. The Pyramid. There are so many ways to arrange the wood in your fire pit. Whether you learned from Youtube or your grandpa, a carefully arranged wood stack will keep your fire roaring and make you a master of wood and flame.

Each Solo Stove fire pit model is unique. With that in mind, you can get creative with how you stack the wood inside your fire pit to achieve the coveted secondary burn.

In the spirit of creativity, we want to pass on some special firewood stacking techniques known by one of Solo Stove’s wise and mysterious spark sages: Joseph Gonzales, VP of Business Development.

Joseph says the key is to never let your firewood stack above the top air vents of your Solo Stove fire pit. Those vents need to be clear in order to have a smokeless flame.

“I own every type of Solo Stove fire pit: Ranger, Bonfire, and Yukon. I’ve built so many fires in each of them. In my backyard. On the campsite. No matter where, this method will help you keep that secondary burn going.” — Joseph Gonzales

Start Here

No matter if you’re using Ranger, Bonfire, or Yukon, always start with a base layer of 2”-3” chunkwood pieces across the bottom of the fire pit. You can even add twigs, pinecones, leaves, or even dryer lint in the center to help light the chunkwood base.


After the base layer has caught fire, add small chunkwood splits one at a time. Let each one fully catch fire before adding the next.

Lay each chunkwood split across each other so oxygen can flow between them. Stop adding the splits once the stack reaches the top vents to create the secondary burn.

Solo Stove’s Juniper Aromatic Firewood is cut to be used in any of our firepits, but it’s perfect for the Ranger. Each piece is cut to roughly 10″ across and fits snugly inside.


Arrange small bits of twigs or chunkwood into a pyramid in the center on top of the chunkwood base. Add more pieces of tinder to prepare for the larger pieces of wood you’ll add in the next step.

Arrange larger chunk or hardwood logs around the tinder in a circular, “clock face” pattern. The key to this technique is bringing heat from the center of the fire pit to the outer walls. The hotter the walls, the better the secondary burn.

“I call this technique the ‘Circle of Influence.’ With logs stacked around you have the best opportunity of your spark growing into a bright, mature, brilliant flame”
— Joseph Gonzales

Very inspirational, Joseph.


Using hardwood logs, the technique is similar to Bonfire, except once the hardwood logs catch fire push them towards the outer walls.