thomas rubino

Rocket Scientist
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since Apr 14, 2013
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cat pig rocket stoves
13 acres in extreme rural Montana 100% off grid since 1983. Solar and micro hydro. Summer time piggy farmer. Restoring 2000-04 Subaru outbacks wagons for fun and a little profit. Not quite old enough to retire YET but closing on it fast... until then I must occasionally leave Paradise "home" and run large construction cranes on union job sites across the inland northwest. I make (Well try) A-2 A-2 cheese, I love cooking with my wood smoker for everything! Would not live anywhere else but rural Montana ! My wife Liz runs "Rocks by liz" a successful Etsy store and we have a summer booth at the Missoula peoples market. We currently breed and raise persian cats but are about to retire all the girls and let them be happy kittys for the remainder of their days.Oh and my biggest thing is... I LOVE MY RMH !
latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
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Recent posts by thomas rubino

I'm thinking that it probably had something to do with spinning ,string, yarn ?  
Someone took some time to make this, they had a good use for it.

I like Douglas's thoughts about a knife sharpener.
Definitely the hand crank would need to be changed to a foot feed.

2 days ago
Fluffy supplies us with a quote from the Feline Book of how it is!
3 days ago
Yup clouds and showers here.
Pictures from a clear area  would be great!
4 days ago
Good Day Carlos;
The first two pictures show the steel plate held in my vise,
This is showing the overall design of the plate and the placement of the 1/4" bolts I used to space it out from the firebricks .
No welding involved.  The narrower portion is the width of your feed tube,
The wider portion sits on top of the feed tube, its width and height  is optional.
The bolts keep a consistent gap of 1/4-3/8" to allow cooler air to reach the burn tunnel.
The narrower portion hangs 3/8" past the burn tunnel roof to help create good air flow.
This plate will need replaced every  few  years  as the temps will warp and spall  the metal.  

4 days ago
Hey Francisco;
Getting  information about Rocket Mass heaters  out to the people in need, is always a good idea.
Having  translation's  done would be a big help.
Unfortunately just giving them the info is not enough. Even supplying exact plans on how to build a J tube  RMh is only so good.
People need to see one in action to really grasp the concept.
As far as building them goes.  They are not complex but...
Plan dimensions must be followed exactly in the core area.
The length of run in the mass must not be exceeded.
An inexperienced builder (or 1 million of them)  is likely to think it is ok to make a few things different.
They can easily end up with a poor performing RMH  that can decide to run backwards and smoke out a house.

You need an experienced local builder, who speaks the language .
This person and his apprentices  will spread the word by building true Rocket Mass Heaters that work properly.
They can influence skeptical rural residents.
They can teach others with every successful build they make.
Happy warm residents will quickly spread the good word.
A poorly built RMH that smokes out a farmhouse, can do more damage to their reputation than anything else.
A few farmers telling their buddy's at the pub , how they all almost perished because of this new fangled stove...
(probably neglecting to mention that their old box stove also smoked out the house from time to time)

This is going to be a rough year or more in that whole part of the world.
The entire free world is helping to stabilize the situation.
We can  all hope, that by winters approach things will be better, with food and supplies  available for all.


4 days ago
And here is  Molly the Mastiff "guarding" the burgers on the grill.
Note how appropriate sized the smoke shack is to become Mollys new  heated all weather dog house...
1 week ago
Spring is here in the Northwest!  
Above freezing most nights and over 50 -60F during the day!
We even get some sun shine thru the rain clouds from time to time!

I started having long loads of firewood delivered to my field about 5 years ago.
I should have done this 40 years ago!  
Yes a trip up in the mountains is a wonderful way to spend a day....
Even filling the truck with firewood (WORK) it was still a good day...
After doing that 10 times a season you start to wonder if buying wood is Such a  Bad idea after all...
Adding up your time, the fuel in your 8mpg pickup truck, the wear and tear on said truck, the wear and tear on equipment including yourself...
The worry of your spouse while your up on the mountain all day, with a chainsaw, an old truck and no cell service...(of course cell phones were not invented yet)

When I was 25 I thought spending $500 to buy a years worth of firewood was a silly idea...
Now that I'm over 60, I see how much work I still do to process those logs into split and stacked firewood!
It is still work but its work at home!
As I said earlier... I should have started doing this 40 years ago, $1000 for 12 - 15 cords is cheap.
Long loads were only $500 then... of course property was $500 an acre  and gas was less than a dollar...

1 week ago
Hi John;
The door is to keep the Mastiff from going inside, its a kitchen not her dog house!
No insect screen's are needed in my area.
1 week ago
Hmm Craig;
Seems a bit small for an outhouse...
I suspect it was a base for an unknown item that got filled in.
Ahh just read Douglass's suggestion,   I second it!
1 week ago
Hi All;
Added a charge control to my smoke shack solar system.
Even at only 2 amps each, those panels were over charging the battery...
I've been running the lights during the day to keep the battery from bubbling!
So a 10 amp renogy charge control has been added. It has solved the problem!

Last years grass seed has sprouted up and things are looking pretty spiffy out there this spring!

The outdoor kitchen / smoke shack is a huge improvement over the canvas pop up tents I was using for the previous 10 years!
Snow and rain just slide off rather than collapsing the roof like they did before!
The high open roof keeps the air breathable unlike the low pop up tents.
My new lighting setup is working great!

If you don't already have one then start construction this summer!!!
Outdoor kitchens are awesome!

1 week ago