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My First Rocket Stove

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by DevilsBrew, Jul 22, 2013.

  1. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    In between the breaks in heat & rain, I finally built a little stove. Pretty crappy and there are definitely a bunch of things I would do different but whatever. It is done.

    Glad I used the sand. The ground isn't level (need more sand) and the bricks got really hot. It was pretty cool how the fire was drafted to the back of the tunnel. A couple times I did hear a whoosh sound. Cooked a piece of chicken before the rain came down too hard.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Adios Pantalones and fishingpol like this.

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  2. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    Are those common red bricks? I wonder if they can take the heat, you might need firebricks…?
    It looks good, and sounds like it works well. Cook on!
  3. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    Yes, they are clay bricks. Firebrick would be the better choice but I am keeping it cheap. Firebricks will cost me over twice as much. My ultimate goal is some sort of brick outdoor oven so these will do well for now. If I ever decide to go high end and look a little more presentable and permanent, then I will pick up the firebrick and use the clay as an outside liner. I'm really excited with how the clay performed today.

    The other discovery that I am extremely excited about is that you don't need a hard core rocket stove to cook outside. Something simple that uses a few little branches is all that you need. The brick is pretty forgiving.
  4. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Cool! My son and I put together a bucket rocket stove from vent pipe and vermiculite and an old plastic 5 gallon bucket last fall. The vermiculite kept the whole thing cool enough that you can use a plastic bucket. He took it on a Boy Scout camp out last fall and it was a huge hit among the Scouts and the leaders. Amazingly simple and effective.

    I'm going to rebuild it a little stronger. I picked up a piece of 4" diesel exhaust pipe elbow that I'm going to replace the light duty 4" vent pipe with.
    Adios Pantalones likes this.
  5. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Mine needs a little work.

    mailbox stove 1.jpg
    Joful likes this.
  6. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    I like that you can lock it so no one steals the fire!
  7. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    Do you have pictures? I would love to see the original and the new stove.
  8. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    I'm telling you, throw some bacon on top...
    BrianK likes this.
  9. Ehouse

    Ehouse Minister of Fire

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    "Junk mail rocket stove", Think I'll steal the patent!
    DevilsBrew, SmokeyTheBear and BrianK like this.
  10. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I love this stuff. I'm inspired to set something up in front of my kiln for preheating tonight (doing the pre-fire tonight and tomorrow, then 12 hrs Thurs, and probably 18 hrs Friday)
    fishingpol and DevilsBrew like this.
  11. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    I have visited your website. Nice work.
    Adios Pantalones likes this.
  12. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    The red clay bricks are fine. They get fired to almost 2000F in the kiln, they can take that heat no problem.
  13. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, I am happy with my decision to go with red clay brick. I went outside a couple hours later during a calm in the storm and a few of the bricks were still retaining heat. This experience has solidified my preference for masonry stoves.
  14. fishingpol

    fishingpol Minister of Fire

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    I've done a little searching into rocket stoves when I built my mud oven. Are there particular ratios or heights for openings of a rocket stove for best performance? One Youtube video I found showed a guy that made a sheet metal door with a restricted air intake hole for his pizza oven to increase/direct the air to the base of the fire for more of a blast forge effect when firing. Have you thought of messing with the intake opening size?

    Looks like a decent draft pulling through it though. Neat project you got there. I can see making a small oven out of the bricks with a rocket heater incorporated into it.
  15. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    Yes, there are specific ratios and I didn't really follow them exactly. I have done a ton of research on these things. So much that I forget where I have seen or read information. From what I understand, the riser should be twice as tall as the burn tunnel. My riser was ready to topple over so that is as high as it got. Lol. That picture is actually taken after I started playing around with the layout of the tunnel. I tried to create a narrowing at the end to see if I could get a venturi effect. It did work on a minor scale.

    Honestly, I should have taken my time and been extremely organized with my build. I admit to losing patience and wanting to get something done. So much so that when the window of opportunity presented itself, I jumped in without thinking. It was a blast though.

    I bought some cheap wire mesh that I am going to try out the next time. There is also a video around where someone used a three hole brick to control air intake as well. I'm also curious about a secondary air intake. It seems to work on the metal rocket stoves (see youtube). That will be tried out in time.

    Sheet metal. I will take that into consideration. I have seen someone use a metal door on the main chamber to cook & smoke with. That is a possibility.

    The entire design is going to have to be a hybrid and not the standard rocket since I am only using brick. I have received some feedback about this experiment from purists who state that cooking with a traditional oven requires some flame. I have to figure that one out. There are others trying the same thing so there should be a whole bunch of ideas floating around the internet soon.
  16. Ehouse

    Ehouse Minister of Fire

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    I keep thinking old style ceramic well or drainage tile could be used for rocket stoves or masonry heaters, smokers etc.. could they take the heat?
    Adios Pantalones likes this.
  17. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I just extended the "wombat hole" in the front- it was a 9" thick firebrick wall (before) image.jpg

    Now it's an 18" tube, works great- very efficient

    image.jpg
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  18. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I've seen terra cotta
    flue pipe used
  19. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    They can take heat, but repeated cycling may cause them to spall. They are not fireclay
  20. fishingpol

    fishingpol Minister of Fire

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    AP, why was it necessary to extend it out? What is the purpose of that hole. I thought all wood was loaded through the top lift door? Nice pic there too.
  21. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    Jon- at the start, you want to keep the temp really low, and don't want flames hitting pots so I normally start a small fire and keep it going in the "wombat hole" (it's based on an Australian design) to dry everything out really well and increase temp slowly to start, and get more ash up top and in the back before the heavy duty fire starts. Extending that hole contains air flow so that it mixes with the fuel and the gases have more chance to combust before they diffuse in the fire box.

    I usually don't bother, but was inspired by this thread. Just turns out that I have a big oven between the fire tube and chimney
    fishingpol and DevilsBrew like this.
  22. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    Adios could give better advice about this but I did price out clay pipe (drainage) to use for a tandoor grill/smoker. A clay pot would have similar results.

    If you are going with the standard rocket stove that would be used as a heater, then the heat would be more intense. My oven is going to be a subpar build that I will only use for cooking.
  23. DevilsBrew

    DevilsBrew Minister of Fire

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    I played around with air intake tonight. Bought some cheap grill mesh. Limited the opening underneath and bent the mesh to see what worked best. For the little bit of sticks that I burned it seemed to hold up well. I do want to add a wombat hole in the future.

    [​IMG]
  24. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    This post renewed my want, not need though, for a rocket stove my wife and I could use for cooking while camping. I bit the bullet and bought the Stovetec Deluxe 1 Door Stove. Tried it for the first time earlier this evening to boil a big pot of water. The following pix show the stove and how much wood it took to do the boiling. The last pix was the leftover wood sticks. Pretty amazing. This stove is a bit heavy, will fit nicely in a canvas carry bag, and will work very well for car camp cooking and emergency backup cooking at home.

    Attached Files:

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  25. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    What do you use a rocket stove for?

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