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Crushed Lava Rocks vs Perlite or Vermiculite

 
Isaac Hill
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Location: Beaver County, Pennsylvania (~ zone 6)
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Can I just use crushed lava rocks mixed with clay and sand for the inside of the heat riser instead of perlite or vermiculite? I mean, perlite and vermiculite are both volcanic rocks, right?
 
Ernie Wisner
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yep that they are however each has a specific insulation value. pumice being the lowest and perlite being the highest. in order to get the insulation values you have to use more materials. so you end up spending just as much to get 4 times the pumice as you would for a two 2 cubic foot of perlite.
 
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Rocket Mass Heater Plans: Annex 6
https://permies.com/wiki/138231/Rocket-Mass-Heater-Plans-Annex
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