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Rocket Mass Heater wrkshp in upstate NY April 2015  RSS feed

 
Valerie Dawnstar
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This workshop will be presented by ernie and erica Wisner ( http://www.ernieanderica.info ) and hosted at a small farm in Sterling, NY near the shores of Lake Ontario from April 24 - 26, 2015.
rocket mass heaters:
* Build with Cob, Masonry, Metal, & more
* Burn wood smoke-free and super-efficiently
* Explore great designs, methods & materials (historic & modern)
* Enjoy massive heat with a handful of wood
Cost: $350. covers instruction, meals, and tent campsite. Ask about other housing options available. $50 non-refundable deposit secures your spot in this limited enrollment workshop. Early bird discount - $299. if paid in full by March 20, 2015. Limited work/trade arrangements are available.
Payment deadline is April 3rd, 2015.
Send payment through PayPal to healgaia@yahoo.com.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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You can learn from top notch instructors - Ernie and Erica Wisner - and learn how to use very small amounts of wood to efficiently and cleanly heat your home.

Details in first post of this thread or message me for further questions.

Valerie
 
Peter Smith
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Location: NEPA
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I'm in NEPA, and would love to be there, but it is too far out to commit to yet. Maybe by the new year.
 
jamie michelle
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Interested!

Is there a couples rate?
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Hi!
I am unable to do that but if you pay in full before March 20, 2015 each will get a 15% discount. Remember this includes all meals, camp site, and the terrific instruction from Ernie and Erica. The view of Lake Ontario we throw in as a bonus.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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This thread seemed to have quickly slipped out of sight. This is shaping up to be a really exciting workshop! Save your place now with a deposit.
 
Peter Smith
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Will this be all standard j-tube? Or some batch box? Is there one or multiple builds?
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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This will be a single build and the instructors - Ernie & Erica - will instruct on choosing the type of build. (Sorry I can't tag them here like on facebook but you could PM them if you have more specific questions.)
 
allen lumley
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Valerie : I heard that Ernie may not be able to be there post injury! Is this true ! Big AL


It appears that I posted in haste, This was probably a (3rd, - 4th person report) of report of a single white male who may or may not have cancelled a

rocket mass heater RMH or Cob Workshop related to health issues ! Hopefully this is a case of mistaken identity !
Big AL
 
allen lumley
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O. K., I tracked down the rumor, And it does appear that the rocket mass heater RMH, Guru that my 3rd party was aware of and was possibly an early disciple of /

indentured servant/slave of Ianto Evans Who was a single Male may or may not have canceled a workshop in 'Ohio' due to health reasons !

My source (3rd-4th hand) did not realize that ''an early disciple of Ianto'' could cover so much territory ! or mean so many people ! Big AL !
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Hi Allen,

Last I heard, Ernie's new brace is working well and is planning on being at the April 2015 workshop - with Erica - here in New York. Thanks!

At least, that is the case if that was who you were referencing.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Busy working out the details for this workshop. Didn't want this to slip out of sight. The workshop will be in central northern New York state.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Excited about Rocket Mass Heaters? Want to learn from the leaders in the field? Join us with premier instructors, Ernie & Erica Wisner, for all the latest information on building the cleanest, cheapest way to heat your home.

Located in north central New York State on the shores of Lake Ontario.
 
Erica Wisner
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Just to quell the rumors:
- Ernie is doing great with his new leg brace. It was a huge help in the Montana workshop last fall, and we look forward to being able to teach more workshops in 2015 as a result of his improved mobility and stamina.

- We do know of at least one fellow RMH builder in Ohio who had a health crisis last fall, because he was one of the innovators invited to Montana and had to cancel. Not sure if it's the same person, but our friend is recovering well, thanks.

Regarding the type of heater:
We mostly do the J-style firebox, as they have worked well for a lot of owners in past situations. The J-style seems more forgiving of human error, both in construction and in loading. Of course, we could be biased due to familiarity.
(The batch boxes seem like they would be simple to operate, but there are critical areas which must not be blocked by firewood for the clean burn. I've seen people who are familiar with wood-stoves make bad assumptions about how to load, and how full to load, a batch box, resulting in very smoky exhaust. Most of our students seem to pick up the basics of how to load a J-type firebox with great success, perhaps because it's different enough that we pay attention.)

We are open to trying the batch box style if it seems appropriate for the hosts' needs. Or we could try stacking a batch box mock-up during the practice exercises if there is enough interest from the group in seeing both styles. It's important to realize that each firebox style, and even each size, has its own constraints for how much heat it can deliver, and how much "back end" (thermal mass and/or cooking functions) can be carried by the fireboxe's heat output.

We'll be talking to Valerie this week about her situation and the best stove design for her needs, and post more details here.

Yours,
Erica and Ernie

 
Steve Harvey
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Location: Ontario
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Any Southwestern Ontario members willing to carpool? It is only a 4 hr drive from where I am. PM me.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Happy March! Only 3 weeks left to get the Early Bird discount - the total cost for this workshop is currently $299. After March 20 it will go up to $350. A $50. deposit will reserve your place. If you prefer to send a money order or check you may PM me for the address.

This is promising to be a really great workshop!
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Only 10 days left to get in on the early bird discount! A $350. Ernie & Erica Wisner workshop for only $299. if you pay before March 20th.

Hope you can make it!
 
Peter Smith
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I would love to be there, but unfortunately too many other things need to happen on the farm this spring. I will probably regret it, but logistically I just can't make it.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Sorry to hear that, Peter. Spring is a busy time on a farm for sure.

 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Happy St. Patrick's Day! Only 3 days left for the early bird discount! We still have a few spots left. Hope you can make it!
 
Gregory Silling
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Is there still room for one more?
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Yes, I sent you details in email.

Thanks!
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Early Bird discount ends this evening. If you were thinking about this workshop the time to act is now!
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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There are still a couple of spots left in this workshop so if you were considering it, do let me know soon. In order to make this a terrific experience for all there is a lot of planning going on!
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Ernie and Erica have landed on the east coast! I am super excited to meet them in real and to be hosting this event! We still have room for one or two - if you have been on the fence now is the time to make the jump. Look though this thread for details or PM me here.
 
chad Christopher
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AH! How did I miss this? Oh well, I could have scooped by, going to fingerlakespermaculture.org earthworks class in ny. Anyone in route via pittsburgh to the site going, can pm me for a ride. 2 tight seats
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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It's not too late, Chad, if you are still interested. This workshop still has room for a couple more. Just let me know.
 
allen lumley
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BUMP ! : Big AL
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Are you one who is able to just pick up and go? Have you been contemplating this workshop but just haven't decided yet?

We have not reached capacity and would welcome another one or two folk into this event.

This is your last chance for Ernie & Erica on the east coast for 2015!
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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The workshop was a HUGE success! Ernie and Erica are the best! I highly encourage any who might have a chance to benefit directly from their combined wisdom to run, don't walk to see them.
IMG_0036.JPG
[Thumbnail for IMG_0036.JPG]
Covering the ductwork with slip & cob while Ernie builds the heat riser
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Here are the rest of the photos I have from the workshop. Perhaps the other attendees will contribute, too.
1-First-fire-in-the-barn-Rumford-style-built-inside-the-barn-under-the-chimney-demonstrating-keeping-us-warm-on-a-very-cold-night-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 1-First-fire-in-the-barn-Rumford-style-built-inside-the-barn-under-the-chimney-demonstrating-keeping-us-warm-on-a-very-cold-night-.JPG]
2-Ductwork-is-in-place-Erica-teaching-while-Mike-levels-the-pad-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 2-Ductwork-is-in-place-Erica-teaching-while-Mike-levels-the-pad-.JPG]
4-Mike-looking-for-the-next-perfect-rock-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 4-Mike-looking-for-the-next-perfect-rock-.JPG]
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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The next steps...
6-Ernie-checking-the-size-of-the-burn-tunnel-as-Jesse-takes-a-turn-laying-the-brick-using-clay-slip-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 6-Ernie-checking-the-size-of-the-burn-tunnel-as-Jesse-takes-a-turn-laying-the-brick-using-clay-slip-.JPG]
7-John-Erik-Louis-(-Chris-)-checking-firebox-level-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 7-John-Erik-Louis-(-Chris-)-checking-firebox-level-.JPG]
8-Manifold-is-in-place-.-Next-step-is-to-seal-the-bottom-with-cob.-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 8-Manifold-is-in-place-.-Next-step-is-to-seal-the-bottom-with-cob.-.JPG]
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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The next few steps. We built an exposed rock style using one of our natural resources.
11-Shaun-Chris-Jesse-covering-ductwork-with-slip-cob-while-Ernie-builds-the-heat-riser-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 11-Shaun-Chris-Jesse-covering-ductwork-with-slip-cob-while-Ernie-builds-the-heat-riser-.JPG]
12-Breaking-for-lunch-on-Sunday.-The-heat-riser-is-complete-and-ready-for-the-barrel-.JPG
[Thumbnail for 12-Breaking-for-lunch-on-Sunday.-The-heat-riser-is-complete-and-ready-for-the-barrel-.JPG]
 
Erica Wisner
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Well, it was a fun workshop, and now it comes time to follow up on some details.

I've emailed the participants some rocket notes, but I left out a few links on other topics that were discussed.

Two or three people were talking about soy-based spray foam insulation. This seems like a pretty good article with links to sources:
http://www.thegreenestdollar.com/2009/02/soy-based-foam-insulation-what-it-is-and-why-you-should-use-it/
Here's another source in Massachusetts, there may also be some in NY and NJ.
http://www.thegreencocoon.com/products/soybean-insulation


We talked a little bit about passive solar design, using thermal mass to capture free solar energy and reduce your heating bills. This site has a great library on related methods and maths: http://www.builditsolar.com

I also mentioned www.Rumford.com for Jim Buckley's info on Rumford fireplace designs, and his critique of Vrest Orton's book, The Forgotten Art of Building a Good Fireplace.

For general wood heating info, I like the Sweep's Library at https://chimneysweeponline.com/library.htm

For calculating heat loss, or just rough comparisons of your climate with someone elses:
Heating Degree Days (HDD) for most of the USA: http://www.huduser.org/portal/resources/UtilityModel/hdd.html

Most of our heater plans include the general location. With the HDD database you can compare that location with yours, for a rough guide to compare your probable heating needs. You can also use the heat load calculator at builditsolar.com for a more accurate estimate about your actual heating needs. (Hint: Try changing some numbers for things you could upgrade, like ceiling vs. perimeter insulation, to compare your options for this year's heating improvement budget.)
http://www.builditsolar.com/References/Calculators/HeatLoss/HeatLoss.htm

Thanks again to everyone who contributed great info.
If you recommend any other regional resources for supplies, frost or foundation recommendations, etc, please share them!

Yours,
Erica W

 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Here is how much we got accomplished Sunday.
rmh-facing-east.jpg
[Thumbnail for rmh-facing-east.jpg]
The east wall of the barn is not yet completely sided.
rmh-facing-west.jpg
[Thumbnail for rmh-facing-west.jpg]
The light is better from this direction. The top will be covered with cob, the stone left exposed.
 
Valerie Dawnstar
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Ernie and Erica checking out the livability of the bench. Two days after the fire went out and in our 45 degree F weather, there was still warmth in the bench.
Erica-joining-Ernie.JPG
[Thumbnail for Erica-joining-Ernie.JPG]
 
Erica Wisner
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That's a pretty darn good photo sequence, Valerie. It appears you caught almost all the critical steps in the process. So the only thing to confirm would be little technical details, like the slop on the pipes, etc.
I'm excited to see how it goes adding the last few inches of cob and plaster, too.

Look forward to seeing some of the other photos when anybody has time.
I understand Chris got some good shots of the barrel-cleaning process, among other things worth remembering.

-Erica
 
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