Drip torches can be ordered through catalogs or online retailers – search for “drip torch”. Prices range from $135 – $180. An alternative to purchasing a drip torch is to contact or join a local prescribed fire association where knowledge, resources, and equipment are pooled for conducting prescribed burns. Contact your local Extension agent or state prescribed fire council to learn more.
Drip torches are a great tool to light prescribed fires. They are relatively light and they allow a person to be more mobile than with many propane torches.
Mixing Drip Torch Fuel
Drip torch fuel is a mixture of diesel fuel and gasoline. Gasoline helps carry the flame from the drip torch to the ground, diesel fuel provides a longer, residual burn time.
When mixing fuel in drip torches, use 50% diesel fuel to 50% gasoline, in average (mild) temperatures. When temperatures are hotter, bump up the ratio to 60:40 or in very hot conditions, 70:30. This is done because when temperatures are high, gasoline tends to flare-up or burn too quickly, so increasing the ration of diesel fuel helps to keep the flame lit longer and reduce flareups.
When lighting at a fast pace such as from a vehicle, use a higher diesel mixture as well. This will make sure the flame is continuous. When in doubt, use slightly more diesel rich mix.