Everyones heard of a woodfired bathtub, you know cast iron tub with a fire underneath or with copper piping wrapped around the heat source etc..
Has anyone out there tried a woodfired sink to heat water? It seems silly I know, but I have this cast iron sink I got for free.. and completely off grid, currently cooking over fire or on propane. If I were to build a little cob base for it to sit in with a tiny firebox or perhaps dual purpose for a cob oven.. is this silly? It sounds silly. Cant find anything of the likes on google.. hmm. thoughts? Its a deep double sink so would use for washing laundry as well as dishes etc.
My grandparents used to have something called a copper. It's a large, circular copper tub, that had a fire under it. Mostly used for laundry and bathing. They also cooked the pig mash in it. It was great for heating up large amounts of water quickly.
In medieval times, they (people in general, not my grandparents) used to do a lot of cooking in the copper. I cannot think of what the current name for this thing is.
There's a lot of science to building the fireplace under the copper. The fire has to cyclone around the tub before finding the chimney, otherwise, the metal heats unevenly and can easily be damaged.
I don't know about cast iron as it takes a lot of time to heat the iron before it heats the water. It might work, but how to get the fire to travel evenly around the sink so there aren't cold spots would be the biggest challenge.
I like the concept, but I cannot think of a practical way to do it.
The only thing I can think of is to have an old wood fired kitchen range with a water heater, and plumb the sink to that, but that is really no different then any other means of heating the water and sending it to the sink.
I have a hard enough time lighting the stove in the morning when it goes out; by that I mean I do almost anything to keep the stove burning, even if it is 50 degrees out, so I cannot imagine myself firing up a woodstove, just to warm water for a sink washing.
A kerosene smudge pot, or a coleman type stove might be more practical, but not all that "green"???
Your talking about a "copper" as r ranson said, really common in the UK and over here in Denmark back in the day. We even looked at a couple of houses over here that still had them in the barn. They were used for laundry, brewing preserving etc. The ones I have seen were not at fancy as that lovely picture, being open underneath but the one in the picture is surely more efficient.
Biggest issue I see is building and sealing the drain without using plastic or rubber. Shoot, zinc and brass can melt easy enough in a rocket.
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Hi Sophie! Welcome to Permies!
Nothing silly about this at all. I know those old sinks, I have the shallow double one in my kitchen.
Were you thinking indoors? Or outside?
As R Scott brought up. The seals on the drain will heat and crack... not sure how fast though.
Use enough cob , like a foot or so and temps will be much more moderate.
Dump the drain directly into a larger metal pipe and run that away horizontal .... I think the gasket could last a good long time.
How you heat it depends on location. Almost anything would work outdoors. And indoors ??? A small batch rocket might heat that cob and your house.