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Advice on a RMH build in Hokkaido Japan

 
Peter Sedgwick
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Posts: 455
Location: Toyoura Hokkaido
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Byron Campbell wrote:Have just been reading and enjoying your RMH thread Peter. Very Nice! And I'll mirror other's comments about the informative and quality of your posts.

Harvesting extra heat by adding the "half barrel" extension over the riser will tend to put more immediate heat into the space, and less into the mass, making for a bit slower warm up of the bench. If the space tends to overheat more quickly than before, that can be slowed down a bit by storing the heat in mass, which is already in place in the form of the stack of brick in the corner by the heat exchange barrel. May I suggest experimenting with dry stacking that stash of brick, forming a corner around the back and to the right of the barrel? Make the brick corner the same height as the top lip of the barrel. Obviously, leave an air-gap between the brick and the house wall/door/window. But between the brick and the heat exchange barrel, the brick can be right up against the barrel or as close as you like.

I use this technique on my 6" RMH, mainly as a heat shield between the heat exchange barrel and the adjacent wall. Works like a charm.



Hey Byron! Thanks for those tips. I’ve got the thing up and running right now and like you said definitely slower to warm up the bench. Obviously a lot more heat is escaping as radiant heat due to the increased surface area of the barrel extension.

The bricks you are refers g to are actually all low density refractory insulation bricks, so they won’t serve as mass in this scenario. But I have been using a bunch of rock for the same purpose. Had them stacked around the bottom and on top of the barrel for a while. Now I’m thinking of making some of them a more permanent fixture. See how the extended barrel works and add a bit of mass, in the form of rocks up around the sides and back of the new barrel extension piece.

Will keep tinkering.

Cheers Peter
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Low density bricks cleared out
Low density bricks cleared out
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Defiantly a terrible case of double handling
Defiantly a terrible case of double handling
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Free rock store
Free rock store
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Rock Collector
Rock Collector
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Rock Inspector
Rock Inspector
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Bunch of rocks
Bunch of rocks
 
Peter Sedgwick
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Location: Toyoura Hokkaido
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Hers an update on the welding and barrel extension project we did yesterday.

I took Thomases suggestion and went a bit too far I will do the flange with the help of Mr. Yoshida on the entire inside edge of the barrel, thinking it would slide right on and give a perfect fit. Bad math on my part for sure. All barrels are not created equal. Every barrel production factory has a slightly different size and I managed to connect the flange to the larger of the two barrels. So I had to make vertical cuts along the entire flange and then bend them in with a pair of pliers and then bang them about until I finally got a reasonable fit. What I thought would take a few hours ended up taking the better portion of the day.

Also got around to finally adding some vertical support bars on the back of my P channel so that it would stop tilting back when would lean up against it in the burn chamber. This is a win for sure. Only cleaned it up as much as I really had to.

Here’s a few images of the fiasco along with a bonus track of Mr. Yoshida‘s hand crafted deer shanks.

Mountain life…🏔😎🏔
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Made from old metal files
Made from old metal files
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Shank on a stick
Shank on a stick
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Take that deer!!!
Take that deer!!!
 
Byron Campbell
Posts: 243
Location: US, East Tennessee, north of Knoxville
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Ah, so those brick are IFB then, nice! Lots of application possibilities for future stove builds, maybe even a Matt Walker small masonry cook stove.

Back to the thermal mass. I'm thinking of an easy way to experiment with adding your rock collection as mass. Maybe construct a crescent shaped wire cage to hold the rock collection, or at least make it crescent shaped to match the contour of the barrel, and as tall as the barrel, but spaced sufficiently from it to facilitate easy removal of the barrel for inspection etc. The i.e. re-bar reinforced steel "hardware cloth" rock cage could be shaped on its back side to fit the room's corner, with air-gap of course. The rock cage can also surround (encase) the vertical flu pipe. Thermally bind everything together with clay-sand mortar.  
 
Satamax Antone
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Location: Southern alps, on the French side of the french /italian border 5000ft elevation
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Only one picture needed.

 
Peter Sedgwick
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Posts: 455
Location: Toyoura Hokkaido
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Thanks for all the advice and photos. For the time being the mass aspect of our stove can be a work in progress. The old house is really a lost cause and only a temporary place for us to live in while we gather materials, test out techniques and improve our skills. With that in mind I’m looking to use as little money as possible just to get a living space that’s relatively warm and comfortable to whether the winter.

Here is what we did yesterday. Cobbed up the base around the manifold to half barrel extension and leveled and sealed the system. Nothing fancy or spectacular, but should get the job done.

One question regarding fuel. Recently wood has been burning faster on the outer portion and the flame creeps up the sticks and out of the burn box. Is this a result of not enough draw? Outside temp is some where around 3°C to 8°C when we are burning most of the time.

🏔🌞🏔

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Sand, clay, rice straw and a bit of fire ash
Sand, clay, rice straw and a bit of fire ash
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Plastic scissors seem to be a good way to seal the tape without puncturing
Plastic scissors seem to be a good way to seal the tape without puncturing
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Fire comes up
Fire comes up
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Like this
Like this
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Peter Sedgwick
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Cause people seem to like the drawings, and cause Mimi’s cool…😊
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Gerry Parent
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building solar woodworking rocket stoves wood heat greening the desert
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Peter Sedgwick wrote:
One question regarding fuel. Recently wood has been burning faster on the outer portion and the flame creeps up the sticks and out of the burn box. Is this a result of not enough draw? Outside temp is some where around 3°C to 8°C when we are burning most of the time.

🏔🌞🏔



Hey Peter I remember when mine used to do this too.  I came to the conclusion that I had made my system a bit too efficient  and therefore would be a bit finicky when outside temperatures were anywhere above 0°C .
I accepted this as a good trade off, but was still able to correct it almost entirely by installing a bypass.  On those days where the temperature differential was low, I would crack open the bypass somewhat and then close it entirely on those days where the differential was greater.
 
Peter Sedgwick
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Thanks for that Gerry!

It has had me a bit perplexed. When I turn my back for a minute and then look back and flames are coming out of the fire box. Seems to happen most when a few sticks bunch up and create a tiny chimney in the space in between.

Honestly not sure that a bypass there’s a possibility this season but definitely something I’m considering in future builds. Really want to use those insulated fire bricks and try out one of Matt’s tiny cookstove rise of this cores. It’s been on my mind for a while.

Mixin up some mud to try and lay some stones around the base of the New extension. Having access to so much clay so close to the surface makes it kind of a dream for natural building. And I do have to say that after dealing with aluminum siding and caulking I’m pretty much sold and the whole Natural thing again for sure. Absolute pain in the ass.

By the way, here are a few images of what Mimi and I were building in Tokyo over the last eight months. Lost of recycled and up cycled materials incorporated into the studio build. Client almost lost her mind when I suggested we build the whole thing out of garbage…😋
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Sifted stone dust
Sifted stone dust
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Studio Space
Studio Space
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Psychedelic light installations from late night sessions of me talking to myself
Psychedelic light installations from late night sessions of me talking to myself
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E.T. Phone home…👾
E.T. Phone home…👾
 
Gerry Parent
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Hate to tell you this Pete but your dragon has grown up and is now a full-fledged teenager!
Smoke-back, sparks, late night parties...  pretty soon it’ll be asking for keys to the car.  But don’t worry there are plenty of experienced RMH ‘fathers’ on this forum that you can consolidate with.
That’s great to hear that you found an abundance source of clay to play with.  I agree with you, it’s truly a wonderful natural product to experiment  and build with.  Look forward to seeing some of your interesting creations.
 
Glenn Herbert
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My RMH has excellent draft (not powerful but reliable) in any weather that is cool enough to want a fire, but will usually risk fire creeping up the logs in most conditions. I habitually keep a piece of cement board half or 3/4 covering the feed after loading, and that eliminates the issue. Bricks are the common item that people use for this purpose.

You do also need to ensure that all wood is cut to fit inside the feed tube and not stick up.
 
Peter Sedgwick
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Gerry Parent wrote: Hate to tell you this Pete but your dragon has grown up and is now a full-fledged teenager!
Smoke-back, sparks, late night parties...  pretty soon it’ll be asking for keys to the car.  But don’t worry there are plenty of experienced RMH ‘fathers’ on this forum that you can consolidate with.
That’s great to hear that you found an abundance source of clay to play with.  I agree with you, it’s truly a wonderful natural product to experiment  and build with.  Look forward to seeing some of your interesting creations.



The terrible teens…
Well guess it had to happen at some point.

It’s gonna be a while before she gets the car keys that’s for sure.

We’re at around 6°C here right now. Ran the stove in the afternoon cause it was raining and wanted to warm up. Was outside with Mr. Yoshida san for the better part of the morning setting up his homemade deer traps.

Fire did a bit of the creep up stuff again and a bit of smoke end up in the room. Usually fixed by moving sticks around. Still annoying. To be honest I have never really paid attention to this thing called “smoke back”. I would see it in posts and hear about it and just skim over thinking, “well I don’t have that problem so…”

Is this what I’m experiencing? Smoke-back?

Also, on another note, but maybe related. I’ve added about a half a drum can to my bell (barrel), so technically there’s a lot more space between the top of my riser and the underside of the top of the bell. With that in mind and the fact that I keep thinking I can make my riser taller for more draft I’m tempted to try to tack on an extension to my CFB riser. Does that sound groovy?

I think I have a bit of leftover CFB and was think of adding about half the high of my new extended bell height to the riser. That way I still leave lots of room for gases to come out of the riser and not get backed up by the top of the bell. Also it will keep the top of the bell a bit cooler than if I made the riser extension come to the minimum gap distance. Bell top now about 95cm from ceiling boards, by the way. Don’t think it’s really a fire hazard and besides that I have lots of rocks on top .

Any thoughts father rocket?

Peter


 
Peter Sedgwick
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Glenn Herbert wrote:My RMH has excellent draft (not powerful but reliable) in any weather that is cool enough to want a fire, but will usually risk fire creeping up the logs in most conditions. I habitually keep a piece of cement board half or 3/4 covering the feed after loading, and that eliminates the issue. Bricks are the common item that people use for this purpose.

You do also need to ensure that all wood is cut to fit inside the feed tube and not stick up.



Hello Glenn!

When you say cement board are you referring to Hardie Backer? I do use a steel plate and some IFBs that kind of can cover part of the feed tube to restrict air supply.

My J tube dimensions are based off of Matt’s 6” plans. I don’t remember the exact height, but if I cut all my wood so that it fit below the top of my feed tube I would have some pretty short sticks. Am I missing something?

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Peter Sedgwick
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Dollar store pastry bench knife works like a charm for a 6” rocket ash scooper…🥽

Round handle part allows you to swivel the blade with you fingers to adjust the angle and keep it parallel to the floor of the burn box.

Plus it doesn’t melt like old credit cards and plastic ski passes do.

⚛️
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Byron Campbell
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Hi Peter, yeah, smoke-back and fire creeping up the sticks are two different animals. To circumvent the latter, it is helpful that the sticks do not extend above the wood-feed opening. Normally 16" (41 cm) feed tube depth is plenty 'nuff for standard firewood length, the usual firewood length here in the US anyway. If RMH's feed is not 16" (41 cm) deep it can be easily modified. Got any extra / scrap strips of CFB or suitable refractory (small rocks, brick, or concrete fragments) to extend the height of the wood-feed opening? Added strips of CFB, or the other material options, should be mortared in place with clay-sand mortar, and then building up or mounding up the mortar (or cob) to surround and support the wood-feed extension on its outside circumference.
 
Glenn Herbert
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Since you now have room to extend the height of your riser, you can safely extend your feed tube height as well.

I once tried a piece of hardibacker, and it disintegrated when it got really hot. What I use is actually cement 1/2" thick with fiberglass mesh on each side. Durock is a popular US brand. Mine has lasted for four or five seasons, does eventually crumble with heat and handling, and needs to be replaced now. Pretty cheap for the utility and convenience. Easier to move than bricks though not quite as versatile (can't arrange a slit in the middle.)
 
Gerry Parent
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Not sure what a “deer trap” is but sounds like your keeping your garden safe anyways.
I’ve always associated smoke-back to mean any time the exhaust flows in the opposite direction it’s supposed to.
Whether a lot or even a little.
In the early days, it was common to see a small metal bucket with the bottom cut out placed around the feed tube opening to help contain any stray whisps of smoke. A lid controlled the amount of air in or to seal it entirely once the fire was out.
I did this for a season with good results. Made it removable for easier cleaning.
BTW, like your ash cleaning gizmo.
Many ways to ‘skin’ a dragon.
I’ve heard Matt Walker say many times that the top gap was not at all critical to be a set distance. As long as you leave enough space not to create a bottle-neck, there really is no maximum amount.
As for extending the riser, I say go for it.
 
Peter Sedgwick
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Byron Campbell wrote:Hi Peter, yeah, smoke-back and fire creeping up the sticks are two different animals. To circumvent the latter, it is helpful that the sticks do not extend above the wood-feed opening. Normally 16" (41 cm) feed tube depth is plenty 'nuff for standard firewood length, the usual firewood length here in the US anyway. If RMH's feed is not 16" (41 cm) deep it can be easily modified. Got any extra / scrap strips of CFB or suitable refractory (small rocks, brick, or concrete fragments) to extend the height of the wood-feed opening? Added strips of CFB, or the other material options, should be mortared in place with clay-sand mortar, and then building up or mounding up the mortar (or cob) to surround and support the wood-feed extension on its outside circumference.



Cool Byron! Just stacked some old refractory bricks around for a quick fix. I’ll have to dig in and take a look at the dimensions I originally used for the build. The fire box is a modified version of Matt Walker’s 6” CFB J tube design. I ran the dimensions by Matt when I did the build about 2 years ago. That core has only the thickness of the firebox roof, CFB x 2 layers, for a height.

I’m happy to add more. Would probably require me to re-fabricate a new P-channel to compensate for the added height. Will have a think.

Will get back with more accurate dimensions of what I actually have at the moment so it will be easier to discuss.

Cheers, Peter
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Peter Sedgwick
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Glenn Herbert wrote:Since you now have room to extend the height of your riser, you can safely extend your feed tube height as well.

I once tried a piece of hardibacker, and it disintegrated when it got really hot. What I use is actually cement 1/2" thick with fiberglass mesh on each side. Durock is a popular US brand. Mine has lasted for four or five seasons, does eventually crumble with heat and handling, and needs to be replaced now. Pretty cheap for the utility and convenience. Easier to move than bricks though not quite as versatile (can't arrange a slit in the middle.)



Hey Glenn!

That’s got me thinking. Really want to have a way to have more air control with this present J tube configuration. See above images for today’s quick fix. Probably work out some feed tube extension in the coming weeks. Any other advice is always welcome.

Peter
 
Peter Sedgwick
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Gerry Parent wrote:Not sure what a “deer trap” is but sounds like your keeping your garden safe anyways.
I’ve always associated smoke-back to mean any time the exhaust flows in the opposite direction it’s supposed to.
Whether a lot or even a little.
In the early days, it was common to see a small metal bucket with the bottom cut out placed around the feed tube opening to help contain any stray whisps of smoke. A lid controlled the amount of air in or to seal it entirely once the fire was out.
I did this for a season with good results. Made it removable for easier cleaning.
BTW, like your ash cleaning gizmo.
Many ways to ‘skin’ a dragon.
I’ve heard Matt Walker say many times that the top gap was not at all critical to be a set distance. As long as you leave enough space not to create a bottle-neck, there really is no maximum amount.
As for extending the riser, I say go for it.



Yeah! Peter and Matt as well as others say the same. Basically the drum is just a bell right? So really no max distance limit, within reason I guess.

Will think about this extension bucket.

Mr Yoshida has me out laying traps with him for the dear that come in the farmers fields. He’s got these homemade spring loaded wire traps he makes. Think he can make just about anything.
Just needs me to pound the stakes. Always learning…

Peter

P.S. think Thomas might have started some kind of RMH fashion brand without telling anyone yet. I spotted Mr. Yoshida rockin these stylish Dragon Brand pants the other day…👖🐉👖
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Authentic look at its best…🦌
Authentic look at its best…🦌
 
Scots John
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My God those traps look barbaric!!!
 
Satamax Antone
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Peter Sedgwick wrote:Any other advice is always welcome.



Switch! https://permies.com/t/148226/Dragon-Transformation-tube-Batch-Box
 
Byron Campbell
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Yeah, Satamax, I "jumped ship" on the J-tube also and went with a batch-box instead. I thought that my combustion unit build was fairly compact, but still, it turned out to be 30" (76 cm) wide. Peter's RMH room is tight, so there may not be enough space to squeeze in a batch combustion unit. But it would add a lot more thermal mass. My combustion unit adds a good deal of radiant heat from the masonry, after being fired for several consecutive hours.
ShopViewRMH.JPG
6" Batch RMH test firing
6" Batch RMH test firing
 
Peter Sedgwick
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The batch box is a great idea and I do plan on experimenting when the weather is warmer, but at the moment we are nearing the cold season and we have a less than functional heating source. Can’t get the fire to do anything other than this and after over an hour of continuous burning smoke is still billowing out the chimney and we have to open all the doors and windows just to breath. Temperature outside is 7°C. Flue pipe temperature won’t go above 50°C.

I’m not really sure what the problem is or what to do. Never had any kind of problems with the system at all.

The present state of the stove seems rather dangerous to me.

Any and all advice would be very welcome thank you.

Cheers, Peter
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Peter Sedgwick
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Found some scrap CFB that I could tack on to the chimney if you think that might help alleviate the problem. Might cut open the far end of the half barrel bench as well to have a look at the ducting and see if there is anything clogging up the system.

Peter
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Gerry Parent
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Peter Sedgwick wrote:The batch box is a great idea and I do plan on experimenting when the weather is warmer, but at the moment we are nearing the cold season and we have a less than functional heating source. Can’t get the fire to do anything other than this and after over an hour of continuous burning smoke is still billowing out the chimney and we have to open all the doors and windows just to breath. Temperature outside is 7°C. Flue pipe temperature won’t go above 50°C.

I’m not really sure what the problem is or what to do. Never had any kind of problems with the system at all.

The present state of the stove seems rather dangerous to me.

Any and all advice would be very welcome thank you.

Cheers, Peter


My feelings go out to you Pete for having to breathe stinky exhaust gases inside the house.  Bad dragon, bad!
A few ideas:
If you remember burning last year with the same temperatures outside and not having problems I would agree and say that your system is clogged up; Either with ash or perhaps even a critter has gone and moved in during your long absence.
If however your system improves significantly during a cold snap, you know that it’s just the temperature differential causing your woes.  Even a simple makeshift bypass would be a huge benefit to get you by for now. A piece of your CFB would make an excellent gateway and all that clay you have could make a tunnel for it right on top  of the bench bridging the manifold to the vertical exhaust pipe of your bench.
Also, if there is a way (for now) to remove that extra half barrel additionthat would raise the exhaust gas temp higher to produce more draft.
Wishing you clean exhaust and cleaner  indoor air to breathe. 🤢🤮
 
Satamax Antone
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You don't have cleanouts?

System clogged, or just partly. You don't immagine how much fly ashes gathers in the very spots where the gas stream slows down.

Order of action i would say.

First of all. Skirt the barrel with roxul, rockwool or any other batt insulation and attach it with wire.

Does it improves? If yes, too much heat extraction.

Fix, use bricks as showed in a previous post. Even just stacked is sufficient.

If that doesn't improve.

Remove the top barrel, for a visual inspection of  the "plenum"  try to feel the draft with your hand.
Send a vacuum cleaner's tube in there to clean the pipes of your bench.  Try to find an old one at the recycle yard or dumpster, that will most likely kill it.

You could also blow compressed air from the other end, at the same time.

Then if that doesn't declog it.

You'll have to open the bench to clean, and add cleanouts.

Another thing i would do, insulate that vertical hvac pipe chimney.

 
Peter Sedgwick
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Hey Gerry!

Thanks for that. I’m gonna have a bit of a tinker before the weather gets too cold. Think the only “critter” that could have gotten in would be a bird from the chimney. I took the cap off the other day and didn’t see anything suspect.

Also had a look on the inside of the half barrel bench and see if there is any build up. This is what it looks like after the fire went out over six or seven hours ago. Was thinking I could just vacuum out but after seeing this reluctant to say the least.

Just so everyone knows I’m running an exit flue pipe along the bottom of the half barrel bell chamber to help promote draft. This was a suggestion made by Matt Walker. I have no idea if what I’m looking at is normal or if any of this is an issue.

Just relaying info at this point.

Thoughts?

Is this normal or is our heater Possessed by a demons from the underworld? (First time this has ever been opened on this end since it was built two years ago)

Peter
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Peter Sedgwick
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Satamax Antone wrote:You don't have cleanouts?

System clogged, or just partly. You don't immagine how much fly ashes gathers in the very spots where the gas stream slows down.

Order of action i would say.

First of all. Skirt the barrel with roxul, rockwool or any other batt insulation and attach it with wire.

Does it improves? If yes, too much heat extraction.

Fix, use bricks as showed in a previous post. Even just stacked is sufficient.

If that doesn't improve.

Remove the top barrel, for a visual inspection of  the "plenum"  try to feel the draft with your hand.
Send a vacuum cleaner's tube in there to clean the pipes of your bench.  Try to find an old one at the recycle yard or dumpster, that will most likely kill it.

You could also blow compressed air from the other end, at the same time.

Then if that doesn't declog it.

You'll have to open the bench to clean, and add cleanouts.

Another thing i would do, insulate that vertical hvac pipe chimney.



Hey Max, Just saw your response now.

Matt said I wouldn't need clean outs with a bell bench like this. I do clean out in and around main drum can at least twice a year. There is basically no manifold cause the drum/bell is connected directly so there’s no place for build up there to clog the system. Might be the ducting. By the way here is how much has collected at the end of the half drunk and fell bench after two years. I would say there is less than 2 mm of buildup on the floor. I don’t have anything to gauge it against but I have a feeling that it’s not very much.

Will try cleaning as you suggested as much as possible once I’m sure all of the molten lava is gone and I can safely do so with the vacuum. Will also try from the top with a brush to snake down the chimney.

Most likely try carving up the lower part of the barrel as well and see how that goes as I don’t have access to any insulative wall material right now on hand.

Thanks a lot for the ideas and feedback. Will keep you posted.

Cheers, Pete
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Peter Sedgwick
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Here’s a few more images from cleaning I did a few weeks ago of the main drum to bell bench.
Maybe this will help give you an idea of how the system is put together.

🌞
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Satamax Antone
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Hi Peter, that's weird that your fly ash caught fire from the grinder's sparks. That means your combustion could be better.

Cause: not enough draft imho.

Can you see in the elbow circled in red?  With your camera? See if there is no fly ash buildup there.



What's on the bottom of your bench doesn't matter.

Except where i pointed the blue arrow. Is that lots of ash buildup?

I re checked your thread until page six or seven.

The only problem points i can see, the elbow circled in red.



This one.

And nothing else much. Your plenum/transition area is fantastic. If not full of ash buildup.

Really, insulate the vertical chimney first.

I'm noting that you have a good full barrel in the bench. You say, one and a half as the first bell/radiator.

That's 4.65m² of heat extraction.

Peter says 5.3m² for a 15cm batch.

But for a J i'm in unknown territory. Or at least i don't remember.  IIRC Peter said a batch has about double the power. So half the ISA in square meter for your bell and bench  behind a six incher should be "sound"

What you have after the bench is giving your trouble i think.

Let say 2.5 meter of horizontal pipe. 2/3rds of it considered active, at least at startup. (not accounting for the floor of the pipe)

That's another 0.78m² in the pipe.

Plus what, 5 or 6 meters in vertical uninsulated?  2.82m².

That is a lot.

Please please insulate that vertical chimney.

As well, cut an opening at the bottom above the elbow, that you'll close with another piece of pipe and jubilee clips, so you can prime and clean there.

HTH.
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Satamax Antone
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Peter, just saw your last post.With ash buildup and all, you're fine i would say. Just the two elbows.

And what i stated above, too much heat extraction.

Really, insulate that vertical chimney.

I would also put some 1 or 2 inch superwool around that riser. Even if it's already fiber.
 
Peter Sedgwick
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Hey Max!

Noted on all points. I’ll try and see if I can get into that elbow. Put a refractory brick over the hole I just made at the end of the bell bench and slapped some cob around to seal. Another big rock to hold in place. Loaded up the top of the main barrel with a bunch of rocks and started her up. Temp out side is around 8°C at the moment.

Anyway long story short, seems like better draft than this afternoon. And not nearly as much fire coming out the firebox and only a bit of smoke from time to time.

By the way the chimney is insulated from just below the ceiling in the room all the way to the top outside of the house. Only part that is on insulated is inside of the room. This is something I ran by everyone about two years ago when I was doing the original builder and everyone said it was no problem. Photo for reference.

On another note I have some brown liquid leaking out of my ducting. I have a feeling this is pretty dangerous.

Please advise on this one…

Pretty sure this rocket is not very rockety and is running rather dirty right now.
🙏🏽
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Byron Campbell
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Hi Peter, such a drastic change of performance usually indicates a serious problem has cropped up. Smokey exhaust out the flu tells me that after-burn is not occurring in the heat riser. The CFB heat riser may have split (come apart) at one or more of it's seams. Or, as Satamax pointed out, a restriction due to build up in an exhaust elbow.  I.e. birds may have attempted to build a nest in the H-cap and the flu is filled with nesting material, which may have fallen down the pipe and is clogging one of the elbows etc. Those are the usual suspects to look for.

Peter Sedgwick wrote: Can’t get the fire to do anything other than this and after over an hour of continuous burning smoke is still billowing out the chimney and we have to open all the doors and windows just to breath. Temperature outside is 7°C. Flue pipe temperature won’t go above 50°C.

I’m not really sure what the problem is or what to do. Never had any kind of problems with the system at all.

 
Satamax Antone
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That's creosote. Mixed with water. That means your gases are condensing in the flue.



That also means your heat extraction is too much. At least at startup.

I had forgotten that your chimney was insulated above.

Two solutions either remove the barrel addition that you have done. Or make a bypass there


Or else, shortening the bench where you have cut your hole.
 
Satamax Antone
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thomas rubino
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Hi Peter;
The brown gunk is from condensation. Your fire is not getting hot enough.
Is your wood dry or has it picked up moisture from sitting while you were gone?


I think your bell is fine ,as far as ash build up , although checking the points max highlighted is a good idea.
Your inside portion of the chimney does not need insulation.

This system worked great for you last year.
A bird nest in the chimney, wet wood, or unfound ash build up are causing your problems.

Are you able to check the exit chimney temperature?  

Brush the vertical chimney, confirm there is no restriction.
Check the points Max suggested for congestion.
Pick out  super dry wood to use.

Hmm a Dragon clothing line...   I had considered tee shirts but a full line of clothing...  My first million is sure to materialize after that!


 
Peter Sedgwick
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Hey folks!

Sorry for the late reply. Ran out of data and don’t have wifi access up here. First of the month means new data😊

There is definitely something seriously wrong here. Started up about an hour ago. Stepped out side to check the chimney. Tons of smoke. Temperature gage won’t brake 50°C. Came back in and their was a giant fire coming out of the fire box and the whole house was filled with smoke. Draft just not pulling hard enough.

Opened the windows and doors and running the fan from out side to get fresh air. Think I need to take this barrel off to start.

Have not checked the temps on the roof yet will do tomorrow. Was concerned about the possibility that our wood had gotten too much moisture in storage while we were gone. Always seeming to steam and sizzle.

Got new wood today just to test out. New wood has been seasoned for 12 years supposedly. But again seems to have the same problem. I don’t have a moisture meter but to me these bubbles seem like too much moisture. Maybe this wood is not the right wood to be using. This is the same source that I’ve used in the past. It’s been stored inside and never gets rained on but maybe the air flow, even after 12 years, is still not good enough or some kind of moisture and condensation is happening inside the building.

Any or all advice is welcome and appreciated.

Not really sure what to do at this point.

To be honest the bench is almost completely useless to me so I’m considering just ditching the bench and making a direct pipe that goes from the bell to the chimney to get us through the winter and probably put mass over it. Bench just sits here as a cold lump of mud.

What to do…😵‍💫 Peter
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Satamax Antone
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Peter, i said before.

Wrap some batt insulation around that barrel, halfway or something like this. To check if it is too much extraction the culprit of your problem.

Depending on what you need, solutions can be sorted.

If you want fast heat of your new barrel, you reduce the length of your bench. Cutting the whole end, for example, and building a brick wall further in. For example.

If you want heating over a longer period, you remove your new barrel.  If you want both, you need a bypass.  

A test i'm thinking you could do. remove the far end of the L tube. it would bypass in the corner of your barrel bell. But heat might  still fill that end of the barrel bench ultimately.

This one.

 
 
thomas rubino
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Peter;
Have you inspected inside the J tube itself?
Could the ceiling be collapsing?  I know you have checked the riser so it is Ok.
Remove your extra barrel or wrap it as Max has suggested.
Bring it back to how it was last year.

This is very frustrating for you !
This rocket roared last year... something has changed... we WILL figure it out.

Don't give up!  Inspect inspect and inspect again!    You will find a problem!
 
Peter Sedgwick
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5 loads in and this is what the feed tube looks like. Temperature outside is about 8°C. I’ve run the stove in the past at these temperatures and never had any problems.  

Went up on the roof and checked temp on the exit exhaust. 47.1°C inside the pipe. Can easily put my hand in it. Not hot at all. Also as you can see from the photos it is dripping with lots of water.

Here are some other readings with the infrared thermometer that I have. Pretty sure the internal fire box temperature is incorrect because this thermometer seems to max out at 591°C.

Also one more thing, there was a cool green spider on the chimney. He seem to be having a better time than me. I’m going to try to stay in the same mood as the spider.

🌞
05C9F250-0533-4CB1-9C15-FC6AEE3C01B4.jpeg
Feed tube light show
Feed tube light show
972826A2-95EB-473D-A212-AA84D6CB656D.jpeg
Birdseye view
Birdseye view
3BCB67FD-1D0E-4DB2-9D5E-8BED6CC4ED51.jpeg
Chimney now
Chimney now
7988EFC9-7794-41EC-AFEB-180369422643.jpeg
Small lake around chimney
Small lake around chimney
9E7E5C6B-B2E5-499C-BBA5-CD3B707D9B16.jpeg
Gases in chimney
Gases in chimney
452F5EEB-AAD9-48D2-80A2-1A8A047B264C.jpeg
Call green spider I mentioned earlier
Cool green spider I mentioned earlier
F5B398CD-36DD-4041-B1C4-615BE912D0C0.jpeg
Me on the ladder, in the dark, with some sexy pants
Me on the ladder, in the dark, with some sexy pants
7E50CB85-D48B-4E45-AE9D-942B0459D58D.jpeg
Outside chimney temp as long as this thing is accurate
Outside chimney temp as long as this thing is accurate
8A8EDBAF-0098-4AD8-93C1-D9AB19D5E52E.jpeg
Tops out at 60
Tops out at 60
D5730B7E-B8BC-420E-A7D5-7EBDF5EA3ACD.jpeg
This also reads 60 and it’s not even on the inside who knows
This also reads 60 and it’s not even on the inside who knows
DDBB0F7D-9537-4F29-A189-4005E3D81F91.jpeg
Some rocks on top of the barrel
Some rocks on top of the barrel
D6BF6403-9A51-4D61-9CBC-B1D001C748A5.jpeg
New extension barrel temp
New extension barrel temp
3349B173-F11A-4CF3-84B7-DFAB371A1F4C.jpeg
Thermometer maxed out trying to read the inside of the firebox
Thermometer maxed out trying to read the inside of the firebox
 
It's in the permaculture playing cards. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/cards
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