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New Build - Need some help

 
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LuAnne,    Yes, I agree also,  remove the insulation around the exhaust pipe right next to the barrel (maybe even up to the first 45 degree joint) and also on not having wood extend above the feed tube opening (as a general rule - but in particular while your having major smokeback issues)
Next big thing I would try is what has already been stated...increase your manifold transition size. Many ways to do this... manifold ideas
Re-looking at your photos, hooking up your pipe directly to the manifold barrel IMHO is not a very good way to go. I would almost guarantee that this is the bottleneck area that is killing your draw.

Another fellow a while back who was having issues getting a draft going. Unfortunately he never responded back after the last post...or maybe he just gave up? However, perhaps there is something here that can help.
Draft issues
 
pollinator
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Do you have a Peter channel? https://permies.com/t/39862/Experimental-peter-channel

That's to stop the air being blocked at the front of the feed area. I see your large pieces of wood are leaning forwards blocking the air supply and this encourages smoke back.
 
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Gerry Parent wrote:
Re-looking at your photos, hooking up your pipe directly to the manifold barrel IMHO is not a very good way to go. I would almost guarantee that this is the bottleneck area that is killing your draw.
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Gerry, Jim has a fair bit of space. And i don't think this is much of a problem.



This could be better, but not by any means a problem.
 
Gerry Parent
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Gerry, Jim has a fair bit of space. And i don't think this is much of a problem.


Satamax,   Yes I agree on the manifold space for sure, its the transition from the manifold to the pipe that I'm wondering about - If it was more tapered rather than abrupt.
I know this is the way it is shown in the RMH builders guide with proven results and I trust your judgement, so perhaps not enough of a concern to make that much difference.

Maybe its just a big ole' rat living in those pipes taking up too much space?
 
Satamax Antone
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It could be better. But i really don't think the problem lies there.

It's a condensation plug problem.
 
Graham Chiu
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Anyone think that wrapping an electric blanket around the top of the flue to heat it up might get a draft started? I have old ones lying around that are no longer used. So second hand shops might have them. Or is that too much an overkill?

I've also read of people being advised to create a Venturi in their chimney to increase draft but that's not related to a condensation plug.
 
Gerry Parent
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I don't think I've ever experienced a true condensation plug...nor would I.  So I guess all I can say is:  Hang in there Jim !

With all the discussion on this problem though, I never noticed until now that it looks to me that there is still paint on that barrel.
If your still out there Jim, unless you want a headache from hell and a few less brain cells, please seriously consider removing the paint before doing any more testing.
There are many ways of doing so: Acetylene torch, grinder, burning it off (pocket rocket) etc....
 
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It may be working fine, but let me mention that that “aluminum insulation” is basically plastic bubble wrap with an aluminzed layer or two of plastic in there.

 About as fire resistant as plastic shopping bags.  If either of you ever has someone run your rocket continuously to where the mass gets really hot, that stuff will melt onto the pipe in the 300F-350F range, and begin to really smoke and combust in the 400-500F range.

 Easier to install, but makes me think of burning plastic army men as a kid, watching flaming drops of plastic fall off and make a flitting sound as the tiny drop of “kiddie napalm” fell from the army man to the ground.

There may not be enough mass of plastic for a real fire there, but certainly a toxic, stinky mess of plastic combustion products.

 I would be inclined to keep a close eye on that any time the stove is running, especially while you are troubleshooting and not operating in a static and “fully dried out” state.

 
Graham Chiu
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Good point.  At present it's being placed right next to the hot barrel.
 
Matthew Goheen
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I would be inclined to use rockwool, or fiberglass before bubble wrap insulation on a single walled flue pipe for insulation.  If either of those two melt or catch fire, you've got much bigger problems than than a "too hot" chimney pipe or barrel.

 That bubble wrap is made for attics and applications that don't normally exceed much higher than 200F.

 
 
Gerry Parent
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Matthew Goheen wrote:It may be working fine, but let me mention that that “aluminum insulation” is basically plastic bubble wrap with an aluminzed layer or two of plastic in there.

 About as fire resistant as plastic shopping bags.  If either of you ever has someone run your rocket continuously to where the mass gets really hot, that stuff will melt onto the pipe in the 300F-350F range, and begin to really smoke and combust in the 400-500F range.

 Easier to install, but makes me think of burning plastic army men as a kid, watching flaming drops of plastic fall off and make a flitting sound as the tiny drop of “kiddie napalm” fell from the army man to the ground.

There may not be enough mass of plastic for a real fire there, but certainly a toxic, stinky mess of plastic combustion products.

 I would be inclined to keep a close eye on that any time the stove is running, especially while you are troubleshooting and not operating in a static and “fully dried out” state.


Matthew,   Thank you for your clarification. I was the one who had said I had used it on my exhaust pipe with good results but failed to mention the details and its limited use. For me, it was only meant to be a short term 'get-er-done' solution, working with what I had, but because my exhaust was so cool by the time it reached this insulated part (around 200F), the piping was all outside, and I was the only one operating the stove, I was always keeping an eye on it. This is the third season with it still on and still no signs of deterioration, but I agree with you that it is not something that should be recommended as a go-to source for insulating pipe.
As for the plastic army men scenario, I remember doing the same as a kid with a magnifying glass. I guess in some way we were both interested in burning something....until we 'grew up' and discovered rocket stoves....so what has changed?
 
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Here is a solution for making double walled stove pipe.
 
Satamax Antone
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So Jim.

Any progress?
 
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Gentlemen,

I'm not disregarding your input, on the contrary, I'm implementing the following:

I wondered as I insulated the first part of the chimney next to the barrel if that was what you all intended.  I have removed most of that insulation and only wrapped the portion away from the barrel. My thinking is I want to keep as much heat in the chimney as possible, but at the same time absorb as much heat from the barrel as I can as well.  (I'll get some pictures posted soon) . I pulled the chimney that resides outside of the top of the tent and double wrapped that. I also picked up a 6 inch T fitting and a cap and put that on the 90 degree elbow coming out of the mass, where I then replaced the first portion of the chimney which is next to the barrel.  (again I'll get some pictures up so you can see )

Now because I added the tee fitting, its thrown off the cross over section such that I'll need to make a cut and couple the parts left over to get a straight shot back out the top of the tent.  

Once I get the cross section figured out.  I'll implement the propane torch in the chimney (you think 20 minutes will suffice?), and at the same time run an alcohol candle I've made in the burn tunnel.  When I see a draft at the feed tube form I'll attempt to kick start this thing again, and follow the kindling and don't be too quick to add the big pieces until I get the bed of coals going.

That's where I'm tonight.  Thanks again to all of you for your quality comments and assistance.

My current thinking is, if this doesn't fix the heater, then I'll have to rebuild the barrel section at which point I'll put in the eight inch to six inch reducer and modify the feed to the mass to accommodate that.  I think if I do that I'll add as much riser as I can (try to get to 48 inches) and if that doesn't work, I'll start looking for a wood burning fire place lol

thanks again all.

Jim
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