It is amazing how things can always be upgraded or improved, no matter how simple the design. My old reliable brick rocket stove design has been improved in Indonesia.
by Leon Pantenburg
My Youtube “How To Build a Better Brick Rocket Stove” video has received well over 2.1 million views since it was published some 11 years ago. It is my most popular, copied (and plagiarized) post.
And I’m fine with that (though a byline occasionally would be nice!) The purpose of the video was always to put important survival info out there. Someone in an emergency situation – think hurricane, tornado, flood etc – could make one of these stoves out of debris and boil water for drinking.
To my delight, Esquared5064 was able to adapt this design to a situation in Indonesia.
Here is how the conversation went:
Esquared5064: “I wonder if this (brick rocket stove) could be scaled up a bit to be larger, and thus take larger limbs for fuel?”
Me: “Seems like that would work. I wish someone would try it and let us know!”
Esquared5064: “I’ll give it a go. I live in a village in Indonesia and think this could help the palm sugar farmers as they boil the sap from the palm sugar trees.”
Me: “It (the stove design) saves a lot of fuel, and you can use wood chips and twigs to power it. Let me know how it works out!”
He sent me this video and Esquared’s design is going to be thoroughly tested.
Here is the original brick rocket stove video VVVV.
But won’t concrete explode if it is exposed to prolonged heat? (We’ve beaten this dead horse many times, so I did some research.) Again, the intent of the original videos was to create a quick, emergency stove in a disaster situation.
For long term use, here are a few suggestions:
- For a permanent structure: Regular concrete or bricks work great on the short term, but we don’t know what kind of bricks or the condition they may be in. If you intend to build a stove that may be used several hours continuously on a regular basis, use fire and/or chimney bricks, designed to withstand high, continuous temperatures.
- Cover the stove with a tarp or waterproof covering after it cools down. If the stove gets wet, water may seep into the cracks. Heat can make the water boil, creating steam. That may cause the structure to crack or degenerate.
- Build the stove in an area cleared of flammable debris, away from structures.
- ANY open flame device has the potential to be dangerous. Put a fire extinguisher, charged garden hose or bucket of water within easy reach of any stove that relies on an open flame.
Good luck and let us know how everything works out!
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