Need help with a Wood Stove

Here's the place you can post your favorite wood burning stove and also information on how to build and where to get supplies.
jbutzi
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Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby jbutzi » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:12 pm

Hi All,
This is a first post so a little background is in order...I am new to the stove making fascination as of a few months ago. I have researched a lot online and really like what you and others have done here. Hats off to you Zelph and others. Love your designs and ingenuity :DBfire: .

I have made a number of alcohol stoves and recently made modified versions of the stove Nikos showed and got it to burn nicely and boil water efficiently in six minutes with a 35 second bloom. No record, but nice stove idea Nikos. Well I have also been playing with wood stoves and wanted to do something very simple with one can. The problem is I am not getting a very good burn out of it and wonder if you have suggestions. I started with a single 14 oz. can. I have 14 - 1/4" holes down one inch from the top, and 14 more 1/2 inch from the bottom. I used a church key to slice into the bottom to make four legs to get the stove off the ground and get in more air. At the top five of the hole were made with partial incisions of the church key to bend metal to the inside as supports for the hardware cloth pot stand. The stand is 4/5ths of a circle and sits inside the can on the bent supports down a little over one square. This leaves just less than 4 squares out of the can - 2 inches. It weighs 2 oz altogether. I built a fire from top down with very dry wood with pieces the size of a pencil and bigger to 5/8" diam max. It burned nicely at 30 degrees F but did not boil the water. It steamed the water after about 6-7 minutes but never went much beyond.

How are you getting these to burn hotter to boil water? Are you adding wood to keep it burning more? (Mine went for 18 min with one load.) I did not see flames shooting into the top holes as I have seen on other videos. Any suggestions? I am thinking of smaller diameter wood, or adding wood, or cutting the pot holder to get it closer to the heat. Thanks!

Hope these pictures show up:
Attachments
_DSC0082.JPG
Side view
_DSC0083.JPG
Bottom showing large holes made with church key and bent back for legs

sudden
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby sudden » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:08 pm

18min burn should have boiled your water. How much water did you use? I have no problem boiling 2 cups of water with a small amount of wood. Also, did you have a lid on your pot?
"People are not persuaded by what we say, but rather by what they understand."

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Ridgerunner
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby Ridgerunner » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:45 pm

I think you will have better success if you remove two squares of the hardware cloth. Are you using dry wood?
"Many of lifes failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up".....Thomas Edison

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jbutzi
Posts: 42
Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:20 pm
Location: SE Wisconsin

Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby jbutzi » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:56 pm

Thanks for comments.

No lid on pot. Two cups. That is how I have done all my tests so far. I will probably have to change this to match others.

Will take off some of the stand and try again.

Watching wood burner tests by Zelph I would say my flames were not as strong.

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Ridgerunner
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby Ridgerunner » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:31 pm

There are a lot of variables with wood fires. Some woods burn hotter than others. How dry your wood is. How you load your firebox. The key is to get the job done ;)
"Many of lifes failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up".....Thomas Edison

"Live Life....Love Life....Ask More !

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cadyak
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby cadyak » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:17 pm

I really like the legs and your idea for mounting the potstand. :D
If you didnt have such an aerated bottom, I would think that your bottom holes could be a little larger. But, since it obviously has plenty of air coming in from the bottom, I would suspect that the problem would be fuel related. What kind of tinder did you use? Once you get your tinder lit do you add some wood on top of that? It helps to make a little nest of even smaller (1/8") limbs for your tinder to sit in. go ahead pile a little lumber on there after you get the fire lit without smothering the flame.
With a 14oz can it IS possible to boil 2 cups without additional wood, but it takes a very full load and a perfect light.
Nice work

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ConnieD
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby ConnieD » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:27 pm

The lid on the water pot is important, for any stove design.

The windscreen has a lot to do with it, as well as size of the fire.

The 14 oz can may be too small, but if you have dead fruit tree wood or hardwood, they burn hotter.

The bark on the wood does not burn hot; it smokes mostly. The bark should be thin, and dry.

I wouldn't think the bent "feet" on this stove would be stable enough for a cooking pot with 2 cups of water, or more.

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zelph
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby zelph » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:40 pm

hello and welcome jbutzi. :D

I just love it when someone comes in and wants to burn wood, whooooo! gives me goose bumps :lol: :lol: :DBfire:

Increase the bottom side holes to 1/2" diameter.

Split your twigs in half. Make sure your tinder is spread over the entire surface of the twigs to get a good start up. A good start up is necessary so the heat is radiating off the sides of the can. It's all about that thing they call pyrolisis. :D Radiating heat from above will work it's way down and get the gassification going big time. Wood fires love oxygen. Get as much as you can coming in from the bottom.

I like also how you made the feet to support the stove.....cooooool!!!!! :D

P.S. Don't pack the stove too tight with twigs. Let some air come up between them. don't choke it.
http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/

jbutzi
Posts: 42
Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:20 pm
Location: SE Wisconsin

Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby jbutzi » Wed Jan 25, 2012 12:51 am

Thanks for all the comments guys on things to do. I think I can do a better job with the fuel and tinder. I used a sheet of TP and it did start a little slowly. I'll try some of your suggestion and see how it goes.

BTW This was a 10 min build prototype to test a concept and I know I can make it a bit 'neater' next time for those that noticed the crude cuts. I wanted something simple to build, compact and light weight. I was happy with the little brackets at the top because they hold it securely and I can drop it to any level I want with the same piece of mesh. It also stows inside and has a 'fuel door'. I also tried three 3" pieces of stiff wire for a pot stand but it did not save weight. The legs need to be done a little better. They will hold up with more than 4 cups, ( I did not test them to failure ) but they are definitely weaker than the other parts. I cut out a big flap and doubled it over. The weak part is at the bend at bottom of can. It does hold up fine just will bend if subjected to much shear.

My wife thinks I'm crazy but I imagine some of you can relate.

realityguy
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Re: Need help with a Wood Stove

Postby realityguy » Wed Jan 25, 2012 10:49 am

To get the wife on board..start cooking dinner on the thing or baking with it.Anything that takes the workload off her she'll be happy about.That's the secret to "Happy Stovie Companions"... :lol:
Most natural fires on the ground burn well because they receive oxygen on all sides.Have you tried rolling a "fire bundle" inside hardware cloth,slightly smaller than the can to make sure the oxygen can get to it on all sides?Light it outside and drop it in there.Adequate air always makes a fire burn better.
The views and opinions expressed by this person are his own and not the general consensus of others on this website.Realityguy


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