Adam Dombowsky

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since Nov 17, 2014
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Recent posts by Adam Dombowsky

looks really good. I love the heat colours on the barrel.
5 years ago
what if you wrapped 4 lines of 1" copper around the barrels and insulated that all (increase surface area)? then pump your oil around the barrels and back up to the tanks? you could tie into a manifold after its heated to lower surface restiance then branch off with separate pex lines to dump into your tanks.

the 6' barrels seems like a great idea to me, you could even put the cooling fins for refrigeration units on the copper to act as a heat collector and run coils of it on the inside of the barrels to further increase your pickups. Anyone else have ideas on the practicality of that?

or instead of dumping the oil into the tanks use the fins again to run a coil through the tank The cool oil in the tank will take the heat away and disperse it automatically. this reduces the amount of restiance of your product going to and from the rocket heater as it is flowing like hot deep fryer oil
5 years ago
has anyone come across these Zaug rocket stoves? I wonder how long this unit would last? it has a 3/8" steel chamber 7-3/8" square and a 12g a painted steel jacket on it. I just found them and thought it interesting that they were being manufactured and sold.

5 years ago
Ah yes, I see what you mean. That is some intense heat.

what are your thoughts on his steel caged brick riser? i would like to be able to grab this unit with a bobcat and move it if need be and that seems to be a good solution to stabilize it.
5 years ago

Glenn Herbert wrote:If you are in Canada, it is likely that you will need much more heat than a 4" system can provide. This of course depends on how big an area you are trying to heat. Also, even experts find it tricky to make a system as small as 4" run well. A 6" system is the smallest you should attempt for your first build, and depending on the heating load you may want an 8" system. We need detailed figures about your house heating load for the experts to advise on what system would be best for you.

Then a steel heat riser of any kind is doomed to quick failure in any properly functioning rocket mass heater. The combustion core will see temperatures up to 2000 degrees F or more, and the required insulation around it will keep the heat in and the active combustion gases attacking the steel. The barrel around the heat riser sees much lower temperatures and only inert complete combustion products like CO2 and water vapor.

Ok my house is 2 storeys plus a basement, each level is 800 sq ft and it was built in 1910 so has no insulation other than the 2" styrofoam I installed on the exterior. My house is an old modular cat agog house so its walls are a dual sheeted panel with a 2" dead air space inside each section so that does give some r value.

I am located in the metropolis of Moose Jaw Saskatchewan in Canada.

As to the riser, my cousin has a fab shop and a good selection of metal forming tools, if we make a 8" system and use stainless would it stand up long term, or would you recommend I go a step further and have it ceramic coated to prevent the gasses getting to the metal?
6 years ago
So Ive been looking into building a rocket stove boiler to tie in with my infloor radiant heat and help cut back on my gas bill.

In all my research there have been a few hold backs.

1. the fact that these stoves are very hot and if anything went wrong it would only take a few minutes for a system to become a steam pipe bomb.
2. Being a non CSA approved device if my house burns down I have no insurance
3. I work out of town, I am home in the evenings but I would not want to leave watching a fire to my pregnant wife as she has enough other things to do.

I have come up with solutions to these issues I will post them here and see what you more experienced people think about them.

Problem 1 the steam pipe bomb
I have come across a product used in High Performance race machines and heavy diesel trucks. It is called EVANS WATERLESS COOLANT this product is an antifreeze solution good to -40, and up to +375F but the real benefit of the product is that it has no water and even when it boils it does not create pressure. Im not suggesting that this would replace any in floor fluid, simply that the boiler would heat this then run through a coil in the thermal mass tank and transfer that heat to the water or antifreeze already in the in floor system. This way a gallon of $60 coolant goes farther and you can run the stove hotter and safer for less time to get the heat built up in the tank.
I have talked with the rep for Evans in Canada and he tells me that below 212f standard coolants will work more efficiently to transfer heat but above that is where the there product shines as it dosen't boil and therefore keeps better contact with the walls of the pipe and carries off that heat without creating pressure

Problem 2 the no insurance thing
I plan to put this boiler in a 8x14' shed and the back of my city yard, this way if I do somehow burn it down my house is safe and I'm only out a shed. I will pipe the water in through large diameter insulated pex lines then tie into my manifold inside to reduce my heat loss outside. In summer I will bury the lines to limit the heat loss more.

Problem 3 limited time and attention.
Since the Evans coolant should be much safer, I will be able to run the stove hotter and peel off more heat to stock pile in a shorter time, maybe burning the stove for an hour or 2 a day while i am in the shed working on other projects. I would never want to leave a fire like this unattended but I think I should be able to build up a good about of heat in a fairly short amount of time.

What are your thoughts? and are there any proven designs for a rocket water heater?

Ill figure out the image attachment thing soon but for now ill describe it.
My heater would be a 4" setup with an secondary combustion air. built like a standard mass heater i will have an insulated stainless riser tube and then a mild steel barrel around that which will have an incorporated water jacket (also insulated on exterior) the top of the barrel will have a small radiator above the surface to prevent to quick of a heat loss on the exhaust gasses but still allow for the heat on top of the barrel to be used.
this system would be an open loop and dump its cool fluid back into a pail above the heater to recirculate through and eliminate the possibility for pressure buildup completely.
After the fluid is heated it will flow through a coil of copper pipe inside a 275 gallon chemical tote which is again insulated to reduce heat loss and from there the standard in floor glycol mix will be piped into the houses system.

Would a bigger system be better, or should a 4" produce enough heat to get the reserve up to temp?

thanks for your help and advise in this matter
6 years ago
Hi there I'm new here, but would like to chime in.

What if you had an open system for the boiler and then circulating a vehicle coolant through the piping to transfer heat into your tanks? I was thinking of something like evans waterless coolant, it boils at 375 ferinheight and does not create pressure when it does boil, unlike a glycol and water mix. then you could run a coil of pipe through your water tank and re cycle the coolant into a tank above the stove to gravity feed back into boiler.

I'm new to the rocket stove idea, but would like to build an outdoor (in a garage) heater that i can pipe hot water into my house for radiant heat to lessen my gas furnace operating costs, plus i like warm floors.

here is a video on youtube that shows a good comparison
6 years ago