For folks not keeping up on this on facebook - some of what's in the upcoming book:
Coldest stretch of weather in maybe a few years right now - enjoying how a good design returns value to you, once the system is established. We heat 1700 square feet on about 1.5 to 2 cords of wood plus all the hot water. We use about 10 gallons of propane for summer cooking and 10-15 gallons of heating oil if we go away a lot. Per year. So that's about 80 dollars of off site energy per year. The wood is "free" since we harvest it here. The wood cookstove which provides us with this affordable heat, hot water, cooking, baking and drying runs between 2 hours and 10 hours a day. It was -10F last night and maxed out at 0F today. Fire died at about 1 am. Made one fire at breakfast - lasted to about 10 am. No fire all day while out logging until 6pm for dinner. We'll burn two small charges of wood tonight, maybe three, and do the same thing tomorrow. This wood heating system is the smartest technology I've had the pleasure of using.
thanks for the thread ben
I also should add that besides adding a lot of very cheap or (financially speaking) free fuel to heat your home and or cook your food, there is something very satisfying about starting a fire every night, even when youre not burning in a RMH not to mention that wood burning fires or stoves are very "romantic" to start with when youre sitting around it on a cold witners night
Chris Vincent wrote:Hey Ben! Just to be clear, are you using a RMH? Could you give me an idea of the size of the system ( pipe diameter, rough mass size).
Also how are you heating your water while avoiding as Paul puts it - 'boom squish'. Is your design open or closed and what safety features do you have?
One more - I'd you are using a rocket mass stove, are you using that for your baking and cooking?
I guess I had more than one left.... Have you experimented with bio- gas/ methane digestor to replace your propane?
RMH? Rocket mass heater? No, just a wood stove - i don't see the sense in an RMH for this climate when a woodstove can work so well. But i haven't used one much.
Boom squish? Not sure what you mean..
Our pipes are 1" copper with 2 pressure relief valves. There's a detailed plan in our book - way too much to email about non-graphically.
No experiments with biogas yet - this climate seems to make it very hard to get much unless you have LOTS of animals, or so I am told... makes sense though.
Thank you for sharing, Ben. You've got a killer function stack with that stove: cooking, drying food, humidity control, heating air, heating water, and fermenting. I'm in about the same climate, and I was wondering about your building's insulation. Did you use natural materials like strawbale, wool, and such? You mentioned that the building was high mass high insulation, what kind of R value are you looking at for a heating system like this?
Thanks for that youtube video, too. That will be a great compliment to your book's section on heating.
Iron rusts from disuse, stagnant water loses its purity, and in cold weather becomes frozen: even so does inaction sap the vigors of the mind.
--Leonardo da Vinci (So let's get to it.)
My main question is what do you do during the summer? Do you have an electric/gas stove? I read in your book, The Resilient Farm and Homestead, that you use solar water shower and the surrounding water features for bathing. I didn't see anything about cooking.
I know you Lacto-ferment a lot of things, and use things that store well in a root cellar and dehydrate, but what about basic meal preps.
HI Ben~ First of all, thank you so much for the Resilient Farm and Homestead. I have lived off the grid for many years, and read many books, but this one was the first to resonate deeply with me. The resulting changes is our homestead have brought us much joy, and I thank you for facilitating that for us. I look forward to reading the next book.
I recently scored a Heartland Oval cookstove in near perfect condition. I does look like it needs new firebrick (I don't clearly understand when the brick should be changed out). Do you know of a good source for stove brick and parts that you could share?
For water heating, did you purchase a water jacket specific to your stover or construct your own? My husband is a skilled tradesman and could make one, but I am hesitant; I don't want to burn out my baby! Our old wood stove had a home-made copper water coil that worked well. When that stove died we purchased a new fancy stove and have not had the heart to alter it. We are so ready for nice hot water again.
Let me tell you a story about a man named Jed. He made this tiny ad:
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