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Another Newbie With Questions  RSS feed

 
Posts: 11
Location: Zone 5b in Michigan
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Yep, that's me. Another newbie with questions. Thanks for all the help you give to people. It really is awesome. I've been reading alot here and other places as well as checking out many videos. I've been trying to narrow down some tried and true dimensions and a set up that will work well, but there are so many experiments (which is great!) that it can be a little hard to wade through.

My plan is to heat a greenhouse which is 15'x28' and about 9' (I think? I'd have to double check.) at the highest point of curve. A friend told me he heard about rocket stoves from a friend of his and I was thoroughly intrigued.

Before I start rambling on, here are some of my goals for it:
-minimal cost
-the stove to not be highly experimental (Hopefully in the future though. I've never seen one go in real life and I just want to see what's supposed to happen before I get carried away. I also have limited resources and time before I'd like it fired up.)
-made of materials obtainable in the winter (aka no cheap bulk clay for cob....this is hard)
-efficiency (obviously)
-relative durability (iow, not going to crack in the first year)

Okay, so here's my figurings attached in a photo. Hopefully it makes sense. I was hoping you guys could let me know what is flawed or a little off, if anything, in the diagram. And if you have any tips. You can see that a couple dimensions I haven't figured out yet. I'm hoping to get ahold of some used cheap fire bricks (I know, good cheap fire bricks is an oxymoron), otherwise maybe I can get my hands on some chimney pipe for the heat riser.

I have a couple questions besides getting your opinions....
-Is that enough space inside the 55 gallon barrel after all those bricks for the air flow out and around the brick stack?
-If I set the stove on a base of non-fire bricks, would they crack? (The actual combustion chamber would be on fire brick, with the other bricks underneath) I'm guessing they will be wet often from sitting on the ground.
-Will pea gravel be as efficient as cob? I just can't really get much of anything for a mass at this time of year but I'm guessing I could get this more easily? This is one of the most puzzling parts.
-Would wood ash as an insulator be sufficient? Other insulators seemed expensive when I researched them.

I'm also quite intrigued with the half barrel method for the thermal mass part, but I can't find much information on how the flow of heat would work in it. I'm sort of crunched in a tight corner (that's the 54" measurement, plus figure in the slant of the roof loosing more space...) so the ability to change my design a little to feed from the side opposite the wall and have the mass go straight towards the wall to ultimately finish out the wall there. I'm guessing this large area would cause harm to the air flow though?

Okay I'll stop there. Any helpful comments are welcome. I do hope to experiment some day with a future one when I have more time to collect materials, but remember, I'm trying to make this one work right so I'll be able to see what a "normal" rocket stove can do. I only mention this twice because I know I'm among many a great experimenter who may get carried away!

Thanks in advance everyone. I'm excited to try this out!
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pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
59
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Bethany Kennedy : Welcome to Permies.com, our sister site richsoil.com, and a Big welcome to the Rocket and Wood Stoves forums! I originally came
here to talk about rocket mass heaters, with scores of Forums, and over 21,000 Fellow and Sister members, you should be able to come here 24 / 7 and
find someone who wants to talk about what you want to talk about !

Location,Location, Location, Look at your name space to the left of your Thread, and L@@K at mine, please go to the top right of this page, find the Permies
toolbox, and Click on> the "My Profile '' button, > this will take you to a new page where you can further I.D. yourself with a general location and Climate
Zone,this will make it a little easier to give you answers that reflect the needs of your geography and climate and help you find your Permies near neighbors,
who Knows 9s0he may have extensive rocket mass heater or Cob Work shop experience !

While you are at the Permies Toolbox you can click on > "Search'' and on the new page enter a search topic like Finding Clay locally in the search field
and then do a search in the 100s of thousands of Forum Threads/Thread extensions just within permits alone, available to you 24 / 7membership has its
privileges !

so that we may use a common language to identify the parts of your future rocket mass heater RMH, and The ratios that determine proper sizing, this is where
I recommend the Brand new 3rd addition of Ianto Evans' Great book 'Rocket Mass Heaters' available as an instant Download $18.oo, from rocketstoves.com.

With over 100,000 RMHs build world wide, most were made following 'The Book' and 95% of all the First Builds (that Worked ) were built following 'The Book'
- And i do not make a dime off of this!!! You will find it will save you time, resources, money and be a resource to refer back to as we help you craft your 1st
RMH ! For the good of the craft Big AL !
 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
59
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Bethany Kennedy : It looks like you are trying to construct the Heat Riser, or first vertical chimney located inside the barrel with a double layer of brick
with insulation between them, this is way to complicated and expensive, ( I don't think anyone has tried this ) but right off it shows you can think outside
the box, which will help you to grasp the other ideas in making Your rocket mass heater RMH,

Perlite should be available locally to you through your green house person for nearly the same money as Vermiculite, or you can buy rock wool, which
is a recycled material, to add insulation around the outside of the heat riser. About using Wood ashes, Yes they can be very effective as a loose fill
insulation, and if left undisturbed long enough they will clump together, providing protection against minor jars, thumps and bumps from loading wood and
by slowing wide temperature swings, protect against thermal shock ! Wood ashes lose some of their insulating abilities if they are compacted, virtually true
of all forms of insulation, just something to be planed for !

You probably know by now that you can not use a portland cement in your mortar, or cement pavers/bricks in your Rocket Burner burner base as it will
not stand up to the working temperatures ! Depending on your ability to work with bricks and mortar, you may want a concrete pad then bricks with a space
under the Burn Tunnel for additional packed insulation like perlite, or penlight clay slip before you start the base of your Rocket Burner ! pea gravel has
nearly as much air space as pea gravel, The amount of heat the Pea Gravel will hold will be less and it will transfer heat slower, you can use it to get
yourself started, and it will work , just not as well !

Come back here often, if there is a rocket stove in your future we will help you find it ! Big AL !
 
Bethany Kennedy
Posts: 11
Location: Zone 5b in Michigan
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Al,
I forgot I was going to go back and add my location info. Oops! Thanks for reminding me.

So a double layer brick is probably overkill. Got it

As stated I want to have a base of non-fire bricks, and then build the rocket stove on top of it out of rocket bricks. Since you're saying cement for a base, I'll guess that the bricks would be okay. It's freezing temperatures for several more weeks so unless I was to invest in expensive cement, there wouldn't be a way for me to get it to dry.

Our (relatively) local yard waste disposal area accepts clay so I can check with them, but my guess is it's covered in snow.
 
Posts: 6
Location: Blackpool North West England
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Hi Bethany

How about building it on a reclaimed paving slab? thats what mine is on.
 
Bethany Kennedy
Posts: 11
Location: Zone 5b in Michigan
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steve allotment wrote:Hi Bethany

How about building it on a reclaimed paving slab? thats what mine is on.



That could work too. Good idea.
 
allen lumley
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Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
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Bethany : Now would be a great time to make a series of phone calls, Because just outside your door you have a mishmash of Village, Town, County, and State
Roads, you have local crews from all four Groups. To talk with anyone, you will need to call early, Zero700 or earlier (7 a.m.). The local crews know where there is
a road cut through a hillside, where after heavy rains, the hillside is liable to slide down into the road ! They Know just how much equipment and man hours it will
take to open a road again ! Think clay !

A l@@k in the yellow pages will help you find an Excavation Contractor, he will know about all of the soil types within a 50 mile cycle (or larger ) of his place of
operations, Clays, Clay Types and expected depths ! Further as he has to pay to remove clay from his excavation site, he is looking for a place he can dump his
excavated soil, for free and the closer to his dig site the better ! If you have a low spot you would like filled and leveled he is your guy, do not allow him to deliver
any loads without being there to receive it. When you get through to the boss tell him you want ''clean Fill'' if you only ant 6 or so 5 gallon buckets tell him you will
come and pick up a load yourself ! For the Craft Big AL!
 
Bethany Kennedy
Posts: 11
Location: Zone 5b in Michigan
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allen lumley wrote:Bethany : Now would be a great time to make a series of phone calls, Because just outside your door you have a mishmash of Village, Town, County, and State
Roads, you have local crews from all four Groups. To talk with anyone, you will need to call early, Zero700 or earlier (7 a.m.). The local crews know where there is
a road cut through a hillside, where after heavy rains, the hillside is liable to slide down into the road ! They Know just how much equipment and man hours it will
take to open a road again ! Think clay !

A l@@k in the yellow pages will help you find an Excavation Contractor, he will know about all of the soil types within a 50 mile cycle (or larger ) of his place of
operations, Clays, Clay Types and expected depths ! Further as he has to pay to remove clay from his excavation site, he is looking for a place he can dump his
excavated soil, for free and the closer to his dig site the better ! If you have a low spot you would like filled and leveled he is your guy, do not allow him to deliver
any loads without being there to receive it. When you get through to the boss tell him you want ''clean Fill'' if you only ant 6 or so 5 gallon buckets tell him you will
come and pick up a load yourself ! For the Craft Big AL!



We have a local excavator, but road crews is a good idea, and you got me thinking about a local development being built. I bet I could find some clay there to get delivered right to my driveway. Thanks! The only problem is everything is frozen and covered in snow at the moment.... :/
 
allen lumley
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Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
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Bethany Kennedy : Yes the top couple of inches is frozen, and I would not run equipment in the -30 dF temps we are living with right NOW, but excavation work
can totally happen in a 48-72 hour break in the weather, besides i doubt that the frost is over 6''[ deep yet ! Now is an excellent time to make phone calls, the
workers and bosses will not be out on the road they will be in house working on projects that they saved for weather like this, Maintenance, Welding, Painting,
overhaul, signage, O.S.H.A. Mandatory training ! Piss tests ! Now is a great time to call ! For the Crafts ! Big AL
 
Bethany Kennedy
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Location: Zone 5b in Michigan
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allen lumley wrote:Bethany Kennedy : Yes the top couple of inches is frozen, and I would not run equipment in the -30 dF temps we are living with right NOW, but excavation work
can totally happen in a 48-72 hour break in the weather, besides i doubt that the frost is over 6''[ deep yet ! Now is an excellent time to make phone calls, the
workers and bosses will not be out on the road they will be in house working on projects that they saved for weather like this, Maintenance, Welding, Painting,
overhaul, signage, O.S.H.A. Mandatory training ! Piss tests ! Now is a great time to call ! For the Crafts ! Big AL



Hmm. Alright well thanks! I'll look a couple places up and give them a call.
 
Run away! Run away! Here, take this tiny ad with you:
Would you replace your oven with a rocket oven?
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