How to make a stove and cooker that reduce smoke
The rocket stove
This is one example of a stove that is easy to make. You may need to adapt it
for the fuel you use and the materials available in your area.
You will need:
• a large (5 gallon) can, such as a cooking oil can, soy sauce can,
large paint can (well-cleaned), or a can that medical supplies were
packed in. This will be the body of the stove. Cinderblocks or
bricks may also be used, but a large can is better because it is thin
and does not absorb as much heat.
• a 4-inch wide metal stove pipe with a 90-degree bend (elbow) in it.The
pipe on one side of the elbow should be longer than the pipe on the
other side. You will also need a straight stove pipe to attach
to the short end of the elbow. These pipes will be used to
create the burning chamber and chimney for your stove.
(4 or 5 tin cans with their tops and bottoms cut out can
be used instead of stove pipes.)
• insulation such as wood ash, pumice rock, vermiculite,
dead coral, or aluminum foil.
• tin snips and a can opener for cutting the metal.
• extra metal for creating a ‘skirt’ around the pot.
• grating or thick fencing for the top of the stove, where the pot rests for cooking.
How to make the stove:
1. Use the can opener or tin snips to take the lid off the big can. Cut
a 4-inch round hole in the middle of the lid for the chimney. Cut
another 4-inch round hole in the lower front side of the can, about
1 inch up from the bottom of the can, for the burning chamber.
The holes you cut should fit around your stove pipe or tin cans.
2. Place the stove pipe with the elbow inside the can so that one end sticks out
of the front of the can. Make 2 parallel cuts ½ inch apart at the long end of
the pipe and bend the section back to create a lip.This
way the pipe will not slip back into the can. The long
section of this pipe will be the burning chamber (where
the fuel burns). Attach a straight section of pipe to the
short end of the elbow to make a chimney that ends 1
inch below the top of the can. Make a lip on this pipe,
too, so the top of the pipe will not fall into the can.
Note: A chimney made from tin cans will only last 1 to 3 months, and then
you will need to replace it. To prevent this, try making a fired clay chimney with a
mixture of 3 parts sand and 2 parts clay. Put this clay around the chimney of tin
cans. When the cans burn through, you will have a clay chimney supported by all the
insulation (see the next page) packed around it.
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