First off, let me say thanks. I'm brand new to this forum, and I have been really digging it.
Second, let me explain my situation, and maybe y'all can help. I am planning to retire to a 200 acre farm in Bracken County, KY in 5 years. I've had the place since 2001, and have been keeping it as a weekend getaway. However, I want to expand the existing house and live out there full time. By the time I get there, I'll be in my early 60's, so I am trying to design things so that I will be able to live out there into my 90's.
The existing house is an early 1900's smallish frame farm house with 3 bedrooms, maybe 1000 square feet. I heat it currently with a wood stove and supplement with electric heaters. The first addition I plan will be a 1200 square foot great room/ kitchen/master bedroom--basically a 30X40 pole barn with a loft built on a poured basement. The second will be a 20X50 gambrel barn that will house my office, my wife's massage practice and a bunkhouse for the grand kids. This will be built on piers so I have an undercroft for parking.
Originally I was going to install a forced air coal/wood fired furnace with a fuel oil backup. I live close enough to coal country, I could go get a couple tons and dump it by the back door, and live cheap through the winters. However, I recently read where the EPA is going to crack down on new residential coal furnaces, so I am looking for an DIY alternative.
I've got only about 40 of the 200 acres as pasture, and the remainder is woods. I've got mostly emerging red cedar and the rest is oak hickory savannah. However, by the time you figure in the labor and hassle, it will be easier to tote in coal, especially as I get older. What I'm wondering is how rocket technology might be used to make this all work. Basically I don't want to end my like like this:
Ha, good plan on growing old william, hope that works for you : Using some coal in a rmh would be ok , I think if you use too much you will have an ash buildup problem. Remember the whole idea of a rocket burner is burn hot- burn fast and then let it go out and just enjoy the heat ! The old fella in your photo could be carrying rmh fuel... its the right size! An alternative could be two stoves, a rmh to burn wood and a few nuggets of anthracite and a plain old coal /wood stove thats pre epa (they can go moniter a big factory instead) . That way you could have both, a coal stove if you really need a fire all night or just can't deal with wood at the time and a rmh for the rest of the time. Plant yourself some fast growing trees (locust,alder,popular)that you can keep harvesting year after year. RMH do not need heavy large wood , little 3" trunks burn nicely with little to no splitting, AND grand kids can carry them !!! Kids also are fascinated by rocket burners and love to be involved... usually they need bribing if you want them to help BUILD your rmh... but feeding it including bringing in wood is something they like to do.
Not all who wander are lost... J.R.R. Tolkien
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