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Corn cobs in a rocket?  RSS feed

 
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I was looking around for information on burning corn cobs for heat and haven't had a lot of luck. I was originally looking at corn kernels and realized that was the wrong shape for a rocket heater. I found this:


"Corn/flex-fuel appliances today are designed to burn shelled corn instead of corn cobs. Farmers are harvesting their corn now with combines, shelling the corn right away, and chopping up the cobs to be returned to the earth. This is factored into the design. I know this, because I designed and built the first certified corn burning appliance in the industry.

Corn cobs carry a high level of starch in them which does not convert easily over to BTU’s. The shelled corn carries a level of starch and sugar which converts easier into usable heat units. The technology for using corn cobs is so much different from using shelled corn, that appliances can not easily adapt between the two."

I have access to corn cobs. Its only a matter of picking them up. Could I supplement and extend my wood with corn cobs? I'm thinking cob only but dried corn on the cob could be an option. Does anyone have any experience with this? I am also curious about burning nuts that are unpalatable for humans.
 
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Location: East coast USA
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mine is more of downdraft gasser/rocket .

I have a large hopper fed unit.

Corn on the cob ran decent , started it out on wood , then feed some in.
 
pollinator
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Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
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books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
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Richard W. : Go for it, build a mock-up of a RMH and try it without the barrel ! I expect that the ratio of heat produced to the total amount of Ashes
/fly ash created will convince you to save very dry corn cobs as starting fuel only perhaps mixed with pine cones !

I for one would like to hear the results ! Big AL !
 
Davis Bonk
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I made an 8 in rocket core out of firebrick in my driveway that is as close to the one laid out in Ianto and Leslie's book as I could make it. I was firing it with fallen branches from around the yard and had little smokeback if placed in the feedtube carefully. I'm optimistic that this would be greatly reduced with mortar in between the bricks and some wood that had been stored dry for a while. I started throwing dried and split cobs in there and they wouldn't ignite immediately but would char and then begin burning. I stuffed a bunch in there and it was hard to get good air mix going in because they would fall flat so a lot of them ended up getting shoved into the burn tunnel while only partially burned so I could keep feeding sticks in a vertical fashion. The resulting burn was quite hot with flames reaching over halfway up the heat riser. During the other parts of the burn, I was mostly having flames just licking vertical in the heat riser or nearing midway up it. This was my only test burn of a real core, otherwise I had only played around with my friends coffee can cooking rocket.

I didn't notice too much ash as a result of the cobs, but I was worried about choking the burn tunnel up. They all burned down eventually.

So basically what ive gathered is that cobs will burn and can burn hot, but I wouldn't rely on them as a main source of combustion. I don't have any cobs around right now, but I could get more if anyone has any things they would want me to try and test and observe.



 
allen lumley
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Davis B. : Yes the stuff falling over into the burn tunnel is a 'thing' that we learn to prevent ! congratulations to joining the ranks of Fellow Member/Rocketeers!

Though it has been mentioned on these pages many times you do still want to layout your proposed system outdoors to see if it will go in the space you have
planed for it, and to optimize clean-out locations, starting with one close to the Rockets base! Also as soon as the barrel goes on you must immediately erect a
tall vertical chimney to give you the same draft effect (probably better) that you had without the Barrel ! We all love pictures here at Permies, send a few if you
can ! For the good of the crafts Big AL
 
Hug your destiny! And hug this tiny ad:
five days of natural building (wofati and cob) and rocket cooktop oct 8-12, 2018
https://permies.com/t/92034/permaculture-projects/days-natural-building-wofati-cob
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