Its been a long time!!!
We have been hard at work building the house, having a baby and getting up and running with my new business running Wim Hof Method workshops, but we are back!!
From the 2nd till the 6th of November we will be hosting a batch box rocket mass heater workshop by Peter Van Den Berg.
We are bringing Peter over to help us build our Bach Box Rocket Mass Heater as we thought it would be a great opportunity to do our first “Permaculture” related course and get one of the best in the game to help us build our heater. Multiple functions and all that 😉
We have chosen Peter Van Den Berg because, as far as I can make out on the internet, he is “THE MAN” when it comes to batch box rocket stoves. He took a concept put forward by someone else and improved and expanded it. He is basically the inventor of the batch box rocket mass heater as we know it today, even though the concepts that are used are from other people.
In Peter’s own words “I took an idea of Lasse Holmes and added the venturi port, among other things. The implementation of bell technology in the batchrocket concept is all my doing but of course it existed before, as is the venturi.
What is a Batch Box Rocket Mass Heater?
A Batch Box Rocket Mass Heater is a very efficient wood burning stove that burns at a very high temperature and then feeds the gases of the burn through (in our case) a masonry bench. The bench captures the heat and then acts as a radiator a.k.a “butt warmer”.
A “batch box” rocket mass heater is different from the more commonly known rocket mass heaters(RMH) in that it has a firebox that looks more live a conventional fireplace instead of the “j-tube”. This means that you can actually see some flames in the box and gives you a more traditional feel although it burns very differently, so you wont be getting the nice little flames that you get from a conventional fireplace. It also allows you to put a big “batch” of wood in (which is where it gets its name from) light it up and walk away as opposed to the normal RMH that you have to keep feeding throughout the burn. The batch box RMH generally doesn’t have the oil drum burn chamber that is customary of RHM’s and instead has a brick “bell”. This isn’t always the case though.
With Peter’s help we designed our heater to fit in a corner of our house with a nice “butt warmer” bench. We chose the batch box over the normal type RMH because we didn’t want an oil drum in the middle of our lounge and because I like the idea of being able to chuck in a batch of wood and forget about it.
From what I have seen on the internet, it is usual to just have to burn one or two batches per day to keep the house warm, as opposed to a conventional fire place that needs to be constantly on the go. This is because a rocket mass heater heats the “mass” of the bench that then keeps on radiating heat into the house (even though the fire is out).
Another benefit of RMH’s is that you can burn any type of wood, from logs from trees to scrap wood like palettes etc. The high temperature burn also means that these are very safe, as they don’t form creosote in the chimney, so there is no risk of creosote fires.
All in all we love the efficiency of the batch box rocket mass heater, the “butt warmer” and the fact that you can build one yourself. They are much more efficient than anything you can buy and they use only 1/4 the wood of other wood burning stoves, which will save us a lot of money in the long run.
If you want to learn more about batch box rocket mass heaters you can visit Peter’s website or better than that you can come to our workshop, meet Peter and learn directly from him while you help us build our heater.
In full disclosure, we are not making any money from this course. We will try to cover some of the costs of getting Peter over here to help us build the heater. Part of our motivation for this blog and building our home is to inspire and empower others to go out and do the same, if that is what you want. This all means that the course is very cheap! and its a win win for everyone involved.
Link to Peter Van Den Berg’s site:
Link to the Batch Box Rocket Workshop on the 2nd November 2017
I will also try to do a video update soon as the house has changed a lot since our last update!