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Best materials in 2021

 
pollinator
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I’ve read the book from Ernie and Erica, and a bunch of older threads on here, have also helped build a RMH in Omaha about 3 years ago in a greenhouse. My question now is, in 2021, with say $3k to spend on firebricks (thinking a pallet buy, and will sell off some to recoup some part of the money), what are my best choices?

A couple things:wife wants to convert an existing 30x40 metal garage into our new house including pouring a concrete floor and building a RMH in the middle, open concept other than small bedrooms and bathroom.

A new friend used to be a boilermaker, and has worked with casting refractory before and his wife likes the idea for their house too. Also, a local Amish carpenter seems quite intrigued with wood heat that doesn’t require 10! wagonloads of wood each winter… so, now that I have room to store bulk materials I’d prefer to cut costs that way. Advice on best way to go vs. best economical way?
 
gardener
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Hi Leif,   Definitely shop around to get a feel of what's out there, but also take a look at the link in my signature for RMH supplies at Dragontech.com
Owned and operated by Permies very own Thomas Rubino. I know he's found some very good sources for firebricks and offers them at lower rates than I was able to find on the web.
He's currently on a job right now but in about a week, he'll be back and able to get you a quote.
 
Leif Ing
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Thanks Gerry! I’ve talked a bit with Thomas before, wasn’t sure if he offered discounts for pallet size purchases or not. Been thinking about doing the same with solar panels as you can get great discounts buying them by the pallet. Even better if you can store an entire shipping container worth, but that’s a bit more than I want to have laying around money wise… like $40-45k worth! Although, out of 20 pallets I do have friends who collectively have said they’d buy about 6 pallets immediately!

The best price I have found so far on firebricks by the pallet was about $2,300 for a pallet of 600 insulative 2,400F (9*4.5*2.5), haven’t called to check what shipping would be yet. My question was mainly geared toward what have we decided is the best way to go (insulative vs. dense)? Or is it more efficient money wise to make moulds and pour refractory mix?

Will check out Thomas’ site again, but hard to believe I can buy premade for less than just the materials. Premade does have some extra value to it, but also looking for the experience of building start to finish and may want multiples… Thankfully, zero codes to worry about near me.

Leif
 
Gerry Parent
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An insulated core has been proven to be the fastest and most efficient way to get and keep the fire up to the high temperatures required for very clean combustion. Adding some dense bricks in areas where constant abrasion occurs has been a great compromise for longevity of the stove body. So from my view, I would say both types of bricks are recommended for a hybrid system that gives an all round great performance and help with longevity.

Stove Chat with Matt Walker airs live today and you could ask him any questions directly and get instant feedback from a pro. Stove Chat

Matt in the chats has talked about building cores from moulds which is how he started but now has mainly switched to using CF board as his go to material for many of his stove designs. He said it was a lot of work to make them and added a lot of complexity to something he just wanted to keep more simple so that many inexperienced people could build stoves that didn't require such a high level of skill and time.
 
Leif Ing
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Gerry Parent wrote:An insulated core has been proven to be the fastest and most efficient way to get and keep the fire up to the high temperatures required for very clean combustion. Adding some dense bricks in areas where constant abrasion occurs has been a great compromise for longevity of the stove body. So from my view, I would say both types of bricks are recommended for a hybrid system that gives an all round great performance and help with longevity.

Stove Chat with Matt Walker airs live today and you could ask him any questions directly and get instant feedback from a pro. Stove Chat

Matt in the chats has talked about building cores from moulds which is how he started but now has mainly switched to using CF board as his go to material for many of his stove designs. He said it was a lot of work to make them and added a lot of complexity to something he just wanted to keep more simple so that many inexperienced people could build stoves that didn't require such a high level of skill and time.



Thanks Gerry! I hadn’t actually heard of Stove Chat before, but will check it out. It does sound like using insulated bricks for most of the build, but dense around the feed part of the J tube, and the bottom of the burn tunnel may be the way to go. :)
 
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