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The Rocket Mass Heater Builder's Guide  RSS feed

 
Destiny Hagest
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The experts on all things rocket mass heaters, Ernie and Erica Wisner, are back with their latest book on rocket mass heaters.

The Rocket Mass Heater Builder's Guide shows you from start to finish how to build a rocket mass heater, the most cost effective and efficient wood burning stove design, using the DIY-friendly rocket mass heater design that Ernie and Erica have perfected.

What's so great about a rocket mass heater anyway?

For those that are unfamiliar with rocket mass heaters, here's what all of the hullabaloo is about.
These stoves use a cheap (often free) energy source, wood, for heat and cooking, with a design that enables drastically less input and much more efficient heat output.





Typically these stoves take advantage of the heat that is concentrated, but often wasted, in the exhaust pipe of a typical wood burning stove. Rather than have this exhaust pipe go immediately up and out of a structure, one of the first ways a rocket mass heater turns up the heat efficiency is by winding that exhaust pipe through as much of the surrounding structure as possible, often within a thermal mass, like a nice cob bench.



The result is that that exhaust has much further to travel, and all of that heat is put out into the room or the thermal mass, before a very minimal amount of smoke finally exits the pipe outside.
Now if you've become a wood heat skeptic due to bad-neighbor experiences, you might ask, "What about the smoke and creosote?" If you ran a chimney pipe sideways from a wood burning stove, you'd have problems with the stove smoking into the room, and with creosote buildup in the stovepipe.
The rocket fire chamber design creates a long, roaring flame path, hot and clean, so that there is almost no smoke or creosote.  Not only does this clean exhaust protect you from creosote fires (and all your neighborhood from smoke), it also helps the stove more efficiently extract every last scrap of fuel value from the wood.

In short, less wood input, less pollution, and way more energy output.

From the cover:

Heating with wood is often considered a natural and economical alternative to electricity or fossil fuels. However, even with a fairly new and efficient woodstove, many cords of wood are required for burning over the course of a single winter, and incomplete combustion can contribute to poor air quality. A rocket mass heater is an earthen masonry heating system which provides clean, safe, and efficient warmth for your home, all while using 70 to 90 percent less fuel than a traditional woodstove.

These unique and beautiful installations provide luxurious comfort year round. In cold weather a few hours of clean, hot burning can provide twenty or more hours of steady warmth, while the unit's large thermal mass acts as a heat sink, cooling your home on sizzling summer days. Packed with hard-to-find information, The rocket mass heater Builder's Guide includes:

Comprehensive design, construction, and installation instructions combined with detailed maintenance and troubleshooting advice

Brick-by-brick layouts, diagrams, and architectural plans augmented with detailed parts drawings and photographs for clarity

Relevant and up-to-date code information and standards to help you navigate the approval process with local building departments

Earthen masonry heating systems are well-suited for natural and conventional builders alike. A super-efficient, wood-burning, rocket mass heater can help you dramatically reduce your energy costs while enhancing the beauty, value, and comfort of your home.

Erica Wisner and Ernie Wisner have built over seven hundred super-efficient, clean-burning masonry stoves. They are dedicated to the search for sustainable solutions and the hands-on teaching of creative, ecological, and practical skills.








This 400 page book is available in both paperback and ebook version for Kindle. What started out a Kickstarter to push this into production became a roaring success when they surpassed their goal by over $20,000 on Kickstarter, raking in support from around the world for their project, and funding several new ones to boot. Our community is wildly excited about this newest addition to the literary world, and we hope you'll pick up a copy and start your rocket mass heater education here.

Get the book here.

 
Erica Wisner
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While we're talking about our book, I wanted to say Thank You!  to all the folks on Permies.com who supported our Kickstarter launch for the rocket mass heater Builder's Guide. 
Hundreds of people pledged and pre-ordered the book on Kickstarter, and dozens of others helped behind the scenes with videos, photos, promotion, and proofreading early drafts and scripts. 

You can't get the book on Kickstarter now that the campaign is finished, but if you want to see the cute video, or follow along as we put out bonus materials for our supporters, it's over here:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/rmhbuildersguide/the-rocket-mass-heater-builders-guide



We are getting great comments on the book.  Reviewers and fellow researchers have been extremely flattering. 
Now that it's been in readers' hands for a few months, we're hearing from folks who have already used it to build their first... or second... or third rocket mass heater.  There seems to be an almost addictive quality about making something so simple, with bricks and mud, that makes fire spin upside-down and sideways, and amazingly clear exhaust out the other end.

If you missed the Kickstarter, don't worry, the book is already out and widely available.  
Our publisher will be happy to take your money if you like to buy these things directly from their creators (publisher's link, click here) For lower prices and shipping costs, Amazon seems to have the best deal at the moment:
rocket mass heater Builder's Guide on Amazon: click here. 
 
Byron Campbell
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I rate this book, The rocket mass heater Builder's Guide, 10 out of 10 acorns!

It is excellent both as a "how-to" and reference, and will be found exceptionally valuable for anyone desiring to build a rocket mass heater and avoid all of the common novice design, materials, and construction errors. Want to build your first RMH and have a correctly functioning problem free stove the very first time around? This is it, this is "the book", an absolute must have.
 
Aaron Dailey
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Hello, I apologize if my question is dumb. I just finished listining to a pod cast that talked about how annoyed you guys are by dumb questions and how annoying people are that ask questions that have already been asked. I really hope im not doing that right now. I have spent time in the forums but they are so vast and I am in a bit of a pinch. We have just bought some land with a house on it. The house does not  have any heat except a fireplace and a furnace that is rated for half the size of the home. and the fireplace SUCKS the heat right out of the house.  we were planning on moving our trailer to the property and living in it while we fixed the other up. well long story short is there have been a few setbacks and we are not going to be able to stay in our trailer that has heat. i really want to build a rocket mass heater in our new home in the next week because weather is getting cold fast and i want to purchase this book so i can build a heater by following the advice of those who know better rather than trying to make one myself. the problem i have is i really would like the physical book for when i am doing the project it would be way better. but i was wondering if i purchased the physical book if i could have the pdf to study on til i get the book in the mail.  Thank you for your time and for all your guyses help with what you have made available in the forums. i have learned so much just by reading the forums but i dont feel confident enough to build my own RMH. would like to just have all the dimensions layed out for me to follow step by step.
 
Destiny Hagest
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Aaron Dailey wrote:I really want to build a rocket mass heater in our new home in the next week because weather is getting cold fast and i want to purchase this book so i can build a heater by following the advice of those who know better rather than trying to make one myself. the problem i have is i really would like the physical book for when i am doing the project it would be way better. but i was wondering if i purchased the physical book if i could have the pdf to study on til i get the book in the mail.


Hi Aaron, welcome to the forums! Don't worry about asking silly questions, we all have to start somewhere, and everyone's pretty friendly around here

To answer your question, I think what you would have to do is to buy the digital version and the digital version of the book - since it's intellectual property, you'd have to purchase it from the creators, Ernie and Erica. Honestly, if it were me, I'd sooner pay for expedited shipping than buy both the digital and physical versions - you may be throwing away money on shipping, but if your reasoning is that you want to study it asap, I would just spring for faster delivery

I hope that helps, and I definitely suggest started a thread in the rocket mass heater forum to document your progress and ask for feedback from the community, once you get started. You can also leave a review of the book here in this thread to help other people decide if they want to buy it.
 
Aaron Dailey
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Destiny Hagest wrote:
Aaron Dailey wrote:I really want to build a rocket mass heater in our new home in the next week because weather is getting cold fast and i want to purchase this book so i can build a heater by following the advice of those who know better rather than trying to make one myself. the problem i have is i really would like the physical book for when i am doing the project it would be way better. but i was wondering if i purchased the physical book if i could have the pdf to study on til i get the book in the mail.


Hi Aaron, welcome to the forums! Don't worry about asking silly questions, we all have to start somewhere, and everyone's pretty friendly around here

To answer your question, I think what you would have to do is to buy the digital version and the digital version of the book - since it's intellectual property, you'd have to purchase it from the creators, Ernie and Erica. Honestly, if it were me, I'd sooner pay for expedited shipping than buy both the digital and physical versions - you may be throwing away money on shipping, but if your reasoning is that you want to study it asap, I would just spring for faster delivery

I hope that helps, and I definitely suggest started a thread in the rocket mass heater forum to document your progress and ask for feedback from the community, once you get started. You can also leave a review of the book here in this thread to help other people decide if they want to buy it.


Thank you for your response. Thats a great idea to post a new thread. im not to savvy with forums and dont have alot of extra time but i will try to do that and be as thorough as i can in documenting.
 
Michael Newby
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I give this book 10 out of 10 acorns.

This is a great guide to get you started building your own rocket stoves.  The book covers so many different aspects, not just the how to but also the why behind it. 

The book includes case studies of existing RMH's that have been in use for quite a while, design considerations, tips on placement in the home, as well as lots of useful calculations and pages for taking notes about RMH's that you may build/operate.

I highly recommend this book to anyone even remotely interested in rocket mass heaters.
 
Erica Wisner
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Thanks, Mike!  That means a lot, coming from you.

-Erica
 
Julia Winter
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I give this book 10 out of 10 acorns.

What you're getting here is the distillation of years of experience and multiple builds in multiple locations/situations.  Also explanations honed by presenting the material to hundreds (?) of people over time, and answering their questions.

I still haven't built my own RMH (moving from the house where I was going to put one on the back porch is part of the reason) but I don't really have an excuse anymore!
 
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