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Rocket Stoves

High Efficiency, Homemade, Wood or Fiber Burning Stoves


Why? – Deforestation, waste and harm from 3 stone hearths, dependence on fossil fuels, lack of access to industrial resources.

What? – An L shaped chamber that is basically a combustion area with a a right angle and a flue with your cooking pot in the exhaust outlet.

How? – Gather some scrap materials and follow these steps:

  1. Get a galvanized metal cylinder (e.g. 10” stove exhaust pipe) wide enough to set a good-sized cooking pot in within 1-inch diameter of one another. Cut a rectangular section out of one side of the cylinder the height of one brick on its side (~4”).

  2. Assemble 6 common red clay bricks (or make yer own) like shown in figure below; use three to make an open rectangle, and three to make a triangle on top of the rectangle. You may need to adjust this depending on the size of your bricks.

  3. Mix up some mud and sand (15-25% clay to 75-85% aggregate) to make a sticky earthen mortar to attach a 4” diameter galvanized oven exhaust pipe to the top of the triangle. The 4” pipe should be long enough so that when your pot rests on top, it sits just above the top of the outer cylinder. That way, the outer cylinder acts like a heat shield forcing the hot flue gases to rub against the side of the pot as it escapes.

  4. Slide the outer ‘insulation’ cylinder over the stovepipe and mud mortar it in place doing best to make it level. You’ll need to make sure your mortar mix is on the drier side as you fill in the space between the outer cylinder and the triangle so you have a good seal that doesn’t ooze out.

  5. Fill the space between the cylinders with high heat tolerant inert insulating material (wood ashes, pumice, vermiculate, perlite, etc). Place two pieces of rebar or other heavy metal rods on top of stovepipe so your pot rests on top allowing the heat to escape.

  6. Fold a piece of metal in a U shape that fits between the bricks in the opening of the combustion area. Your fuel rests on top and air is sucked underneath. Your rocket stove is ready to be fired, starting with small twigs and sticks as kindling and cardboard as tinder. Once the fire gets going and you hear the roar of the rocket as the draft rushes over the fuel and up the stovepipe, you can add larger pieces of wood.