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Building a Cob Style Rocket Mass Heater - HD instant view
(3 likes, 1 apple)
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If a person was going to get just one DVD, this would be the one. A cob style rocket mass heater is "the old reliable". We have two projects to demonstrate this technique - one in a log home and one in a tipi. We put one in a tipi as part of an experiment to test how warm a person can be with a rocket mass heater and zero insulation. We interview the couple that stayed in the tipi for the first winter, with a strong focus on how comfortable they were when it was 26 degrees below zero.

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I have set this video up for rent for $2.99 (damn cheap!) at youtube.   Entirely experimental.  I am specifically not providing a link because I would like to hear back from folks about whether they could find it okay.
(2 likes, 1 apple)
I found it! Looking forward to watching and sharing.
(8 likes, 3 apples)
I was just notified that this DVD has been accepted to "the Impact DOCS Awards"



To support and promote filmmakers who are
IMPACTING the critical issues of our times
by producing entertaining and enlightening documentaries.
I give this DVD 5 out of 10 acorns.

My wife and I have been keenly interested in RMHs for a quite some time. We plan to build one in our first home within the next year or two. Our research has been extensive. However we have never quite been able to find precisely what we want. Many dozens of videos and articles, and we have never seen something that clicks the bulb on, nor induces an "ah ha" moment where it all comes together in one gift-wrapped box. So here's where these new DVDs come in...

Let me make one thing crystal clear; we fully, and absolutely, understand that this is an emerging technology in the consumer market. The idea of channeled fire and conductive heat is as old as time. But RMHs as an actual heating element in a dwelling is in it's infancy by comparison. Therefore it makes perfect sense that there is not yet one magic pill, not one short read, or video presentation that will succinctly provide every ounce of information to the end user. We get all that. So for people like Paul, Ernie, Erica and other innovators to continue to slog through the muck of new ideas and to distill sound practices; the world owes all of you a debt of unspeakable gratitude.

That set aside, as a singular experience with a particular expectation, this DVD was not quite what we had hoped for. We both felt the information was really hamstrung by the shooting and editing. It comes across jerky, unplanned and poorly (overly) mic'd to the point where you hear all the background noise during explanations in a couple spots. In some parts it's just too "cutesy" for our taste; the highlighting and arrow pointing to Willie Smits was nothing short of obnoxious. We have to assume that the event, as a participant, was excellent. However it does not translate well to a video presentation. We walked away feeling that a vastly superior method would be to film a complete build in a more conversational manner; like a cooking show or This Old House. The host explains what they're doing, talks about the plan, executes the plan, then reviews the plan they executed. This is a documentation of an event, not an instructional video. Which is not a bad thing! It's just not what we wanted.

This is all coming from the perspective of two people who are perhaps, further along, in their understanding of rocket mass heaters. If I didn't know what they were a week ago, and wanted to learn more, I could absolutely see myself loving this DVD. So for newbies it is nothing short of a must watch. Also, Paul is very clear in the beginning that this is a companion video to Ernie and Erica's book. Which provides detailed plans, etc. We look forward to grabbing a copy and perhaps that will be the "ah ha" we're looking for. Hopefully someday that book, or a future book, could be used in conjunction with a stylized video I mentioned above; "Today we're going to build the rocket mass heater found on page 35 in our new book..."

Also of note; we rented it on Youtube for $2.99! If you're on the fence about buying the download or DVD and want to check it out on the (ridiculously) cheap, you absolutely have to do it. The content, regardless of our expectations, is worth a heck of a lot more than 3 bucks. The rental process is as easy as it gets. If you have purchased something online, you can rent a video on Youtube. Paul has specifically mentioned he wants people to "find it" and not post links, so I will stick to that.

In closing, Paul, Ernie, Erica, innovators, class participants; THANK YOU. You have put into place a pillar of knowledge for something very important. This is how we change the world. Keep going.

(3 likes, 1 apple)
I give this video 8 out of 10 acorns

Paul asked for a mini review. The information is good. As with most of the podcasts... I find it a bit long winded. To be fair though, I have built a RMH, modified it, played around with stuff on it, etc. So there is less new information here than there would be for other people with less experience who might like having _everything_. Also, I am a reader more than a listener/video watcher. That is, I will never meet Paul's requirement of having listened to some number/percentage of podcasts    I have read most of the written reviews on the page(s) where the podcasts were first posted. They have been pretty good, there have only been a few podcasts where I felt listening to at least some portion of the actual podcast was worth it. So my rating may seem lower than it might otherwise be for these reasons.

So my take is that the information is good, but it seems like a long video to watch all the way through. (I paused it more than once to do other things)
(2 likes, 1 apple)
I gave this DVD 8 out of 10 acorns:
The filming was way better than the first set of RMH dvd's but still needs work on the sound system. Yep, the Willie Smits identification marks were annoying and unnecessary. It was hard for me to watch the video and read the subtitles inserted just so you know. Very helpful of Erica to show us more of what kinds of substances make up cob--I think I'm starting to 'get it' after reading so many books on it but still lack the confidence to do a cob project--but I'm going to leap into it this year! I'll start small. Purchased the set of DVDs before I saw the option to Spread the Word. I would have donated a copy to our local library to get the ball moving in our town a bit faster. You all did a great job though! Excited to build one and yes, my husband bought me the book for Christmas because, "All you do is talk talk talk about these rocket mass heater things" it was the only book I got for Christmas. Looking forward to reading it.
(2 likes, 1 apple)
I give this video 8 out of 10 acorns.

Wonderful information presented in an entertaining way.
(2 likes, 1 apple)
I give this DVD 8 out of 10 acorns for being a wonderfully put together informationally dense presentation of imminent importance and need. Wish we had had this technology when I was a child in northern Vermont. Would've saved my father from hand chopping and burning 12 cords of wood every winter. Keep up the good work!
(5 likes, 2 apples)
I gave this video 9 out of 10 acorns. Thanks to this video, a lot of my questions as to why my rocket mass heater's performance did not match the results I kept reading about from other people here on permies. And for that, I am really glad. Next summer I get to re-work mine. Thank you Paul for the super gift! It was very considerate of you! Maybe my next iteration won't get so many complaints regarding its esthetic appeal from upper management.
(0 likes, 1 apple)
I give this DVD 7 out of 10 acorns , but really I hate to make a judgement based on what I was hoping for. I was hoping it would be more instructional and have more shots and better angles of each stage in the process. Having said that I still learnt a lot and was not bothered by the arrows on Willy Smits or other attempts at humor, The music was quite good too. Wish there was a better explanation about why Pauls idea to vent underground in the tipi worked.
(3 likes, 2 apples)
I give this DVD 9 out of 10 acorns.

I liked it.  Steve liked it. We've never built or used an rmh so the in depth discussion and examples were wonderful to see.  I plan to use erica and ernie's 'rmh plans for a greenhouse'  in our future greenhouse and now see many things in the build so much clearer.

...and it was fun to see all of the activity at the Lab around these projects.

Very entertaining and informative.....and makes me want the whole set.

We loved the music and especially the singing by mom and daughter (I forgot their names).

We both needed to listen with headphones as our hearing isn't the best...and the added text was sometimes too quick for us. I think if I owned the dvd I would take notes and times to be able to find information/music easily.

I hardly have the focus to sit through a movie so this was a stretch for me to watch a two and a half hour dvd, plus unlike a movie I wanted to retain much of what I saw.  I think the way the dvd was done was very successful at holding my attention...I even stayed up a little later than usual to finish.

thank you for the opportunity to watch this Paul!
Thank you Robin Kyle for reminding me! I had a question I forgot to ask on the underground piping that was mentioned. Paul, where in the piping did it dip below ground? Right after the fire manifold or after the piping was supposed to be at the far end of the bench or someplace else? Kind of hard to distinguish elevation from a print looking down from above. Thanks
andy careaga wrote:Paul, where in the piping did it dip below ground? Right after the fire manifold or after the piping was supposed to be at the far end of the bench or someplace else? Kind of hard to distinguish elevation from a print looking down from above. Thanks

Right after the bed.
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Nov 24, 2017 09:21:25.