Jason Broom

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since May 23, 2017
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Recent posts by Jason Broom

Phil Gardener wrote:Well, https://www.axner.com/superwoolfiber-1thicksoldpersqft.aspx lists it, and the price seems good, but their shipping estimates seem totally off target!  Are you looking at ceramics supply places?

For those still following this thread, the eBay seller may have heard our concerns, as he is now listing the Morgan Superwool Plus 1" thick blanket material in 24"x28" pieces for $34 with "free" shipping.

If I understand what was posted originally, two of those pieces would allow you to make a 48" tall riser with an 8" ID, inside of a piece of 10" stovepipe.
16 hours ago
Another consideration was expressed in a different thread:  The overall mass and its footprint/distribution in your floor plan can be quite different between a horizontal bench and a vertical bell.

To get as much mass from a vertical structure, it likely will need to have a secondary layer added to the outside, like a conventional masonry stove.  Presuming both have the same overall mass and weight, the support structure under the masonry stove would need to be a lot stronger.  The bench spreads the mass out over a larger area, so it's possible the floor or ground under it will not need to be reinforced quite as much.  I know the largest masonry heaters require a very large and heavy base.  It is quite common to actually design at least a portion of the house around that singular structure, due to its size.

I have pictured building a new home with two stories, where the RMH or masonry stove is erected on a large concrete pad on the lower level, dividing that room entirely in half.  It would extend upward into a large bell that divides the upper level in half with a stone half-wall as the top of the bell.  I'm sure a structure that size would weigh several tons, but would effectively heat the main rooms of both levels.  It would probably take a full day or more to completely warm up, but should then serve to moderate the temperature very effectively for quite some time.
1 week ago
I apologize if this has already been talked to death, but in studying both rocket mass heater and masonry heaters, I am seeing these similar solutions converge into the RMH with various types of bells.  That has me wondering about the advantages or differences between these two design options.

It seems to me that the RMH with exposed barrel, connected to a low horizontal bench, not only provides more immediate heat from the radiator (barrel) but also heats up a mass that is lower to the floor, keeping more of that heat at "living" levels within the room.  The batch box designs and traditional masonry heaters frequently port the hot gases they create directly into a large, vertical bell or mass.  In contrast to the RMH, it seems like these would not provide immediate heat and the large vertical mass might not heat a living space as effectively?  I understand that both store and radiate heat, and that the idea is to limit convection, which is a less effective means of heating, although it does tend to distribute heat more evenly.

Is it safe to say that masonry heaters have always included all of the attributes of a well-made rocket mass heater, sans the immediate heat provided by the barrel?  By that, I'm asking if masonry heaters are as efficient in how well they convert wood to BTU's, and how well they store that heat energy to warm living spaces?  Are the batch fed RMH systems that flow directly into a vertical mass (bell) better labeled as a masonry heater?

Maybe this is a long-winded way of asking:  What are the differences between a rocket mass heater and a masonry stove, and is one superior to the other?  I know it is much more expensive to build the masonry heater!
1 week ago
Is the white fluffy stuff ceramic fiber?

It may be just me, but that structure doesn't look strong enough to hold up to even one casting, let alone several.
4 weeks ago
As you continue to investigate, you will soon realize that steel is not a suitable material for the burn chamber.  At the temperatures generated by these clean-burning, high oxygen stoves, steel erodes rather quickly...various types of masonry/refractory are indicated.
1 month ago
I say this with the utmost respect for those who built it, especially since it was produced out of materials ready available in less-advantage areas of the world, but isn't this just a really small masonry heater?  Not that there is anything wrong with a small masonry heater.  In fact, I think this is a good case study in just how small a "mass heater" can be and still be effective.  It is also quite pleasing, aesthetically, which is a difficult thing to say about many of the "barrel and pebbles" RMH designs.

It just seems to me that we have come full circle, in that we are rediscovering the effectiveness of the various masonry heaters that have built throughout the colder regions of Europe and Asia for centuries.
1 month ago

Graham Chiu wrote:Jason, what's the power of your rocket?  Or diameter?

Graham, the riser on my rocket stove has an ID of 3.5".
2 months ago
Using a wok fire ring on top of the riser is one of the most common ways I have cooked using my rocket stove.  I don't find that you need flames all the way to the wok for this to work well, because of how a well-insulated riser funnels all of the heat being generated to the very small space under the center of the wok.  It has been my experience that the metal ring a wok sits on is a great way of providing the ideal height for any pot or pan one might use with a rocket stove.  The ring for my wok is what I always use on my rocket stove, unless I'm grilling something.
2 months ago
I find it interesting that masonry heaters are more or less universally accepted by insurance plans, but call it something else, like a "Rocket Mass Heater", and they won't cover it.
2 months ago
A lot of the stuff I have cooked in an oven is of the "slow roast" variety.  The typical example is where you put a whole chicken or other sizable hunk of meat in a covered roasting pan, with mushrooms, vegetables and maybe a cup or two of water, then roast it at 250 or 275 for 3 or 4 hours.  This is usually started just before going out for the afternoon sit in a blind or treestand.  

Most of the cooking I have done on my rocket stove is grilling meats, the way one would in a Weber grill, or simmering a stew or soup for an hour or two.  Those are two different uses for a rocket stove and require different "feeding habits", such as smaller pieces of really dry wood and a personal fan (for grilling) or larger/wetter pieces that burn slower for the soup.  I have found it to be challenging to run a rocket stove any other way besides full bore, unless you are OK with smoky results.  They are kind of fussy, in that regard, at least from my experience.  
2 months ago