I made a propane tank rocket stove. For the chimney I used 4″ ducting with a 90* elbow. I couldn’t get my hands on vermiculite, apparently there’s some law against it in my area. We can never have enough laws. I propose a law against sarcasm toward laws.
It’s insulated with perlite. The size of the tank? Standard. That is, I know they come in all different sizes, but this is the only size I’ve seen here in western new york. I can tell you it took 2 and a half bags of perlite to fill it, at 8 quarts/bag.
I am frustrated with this rocket. I can not get it to burn. I started the feed tube long. No draft. I shortened it, then shortened is some more. I even pushed the fuel elevation shelf in and out. I experimented with how far to push the fuel in. From what I’ve gleaned online, only the tips of the sticks should burn. I tried a little fuel, then alot. I even went from twigs to sticks. All of this to no avail. I’m not giving up yet, it’s just that I learned when you’re angry about something walk away until you find a sledge hammer…I mean cool off and try again.
What’s even more frustrating to me is that I haven’t been able to get this little guy to fire. It was phenomenal the first couple of times…and now apparently the propane tank rocket has been talking to it, corrupting it. For some reason they’re both plotting to drive me insane.
And so today I decided to work on something that I know works, and does so easily.
This was an easy experiment to see if elevating the wood could create a more efficient burn. It did. When I get more sheet metal, I’ll make a better grate. The only problem with this was that it requires draft holes in the door to let air in under the wood. No problem. Except that the draft cover I’d made pivots down…allowing air into the wood but covering the sub-wood draft. Barbara Streisand!!!
To solve the draft door problem I drilled out the rivet and re-riveted the cover on top. The four holes on the bottom are for the sub-wood draft. The reason I originally had the draft cover pivoting down was so the cover wouldn’t be in my way when cooking. But this design will work because of the way I’ve decided to mount the stove in the bicycle camper. To save space it will sit parallel with the longest wall, so the fuel door won’t be in front of me, but to my left. The curved side will face forward.
I’m sure it’s just user error with the rocket stoves, perhaps for the propane tank I should use 5″ or 6″ tubing. Or maybe my fuel shelf is too high. I don’t know. Nor do I know why the heiny hates me. These are my first rocket stoves afterall. If there’re any rocket scientists out there who are reading this, advice would be greatly appreciated!