Another fuel update:
I found out that I can use sawdust for fuel, and that it has the best cost-weight-burn time-BTU ratio of all! But it succumbs most to humidity and I have it in abundance :P
Also, the paper and cardboard I have collected behind my house will be used to make myself those fuel bricks- when mixed in water with fine sawdust and/or crushed charcoal and squeezed in a mold, I will be able to convert it into something useful. Charcoal, will, of course, be a byproduct of wood gas. You can give me some tips, @justallan :P
I have not yet taken out the brick or mortar from the stove but have shaped the inner bricks so the ceramic flue can fit inside it. For the new mortar I found a source laying under my nose. In the workshop, I have college's old aluminium silicate bricks, broken, crumbled, used and abused. I will crush them to a powder and use as mortar...now, how should I and what with mix that powder to get a proper mortar? Ceramic blanket is also what I would put between the old bricks and the new ceramic flue inside the stove, and under the cast iron top.
I'm not sure how I make charcoal would help you out much Loris, due to the amount of wood that is wasted in the process.
What I do to make charcoal is fill a 30 gallon oil drum crammed full with small DRY wood, seal it with no leaks except one or two small holes in the bottom, set that drum inside a 55 gallon drum and cram wood, twigs and anything that will burn around the small drum, then light it. You want to bring the temperature up to about 500 degrees for about an hour or until it burns down to nothing. After it cools you should have charcoal inside the small drum.
If you have a good supply of sawdust close by there are some great video about making bricks for burning on you-tube.
Hope that helps a little.
I've removed the mortar, and the firebricks, too, using a chisel and a hammer. Turns out the mortar is made out of clay, now in a form of fine red dust. If it hasn't been changed, I am truly amazed at the shape it is in and how well it held. Virtually untouched, both the freaking dense firebricks and the mortar behind it. The outer shell not so much...The steel is heavily corroded and very, very thin. Less than one millimeter, and very pliable, due to being annealed every time the stove was lit.
The upper layer, though being still pretty good, took most of the thermal shock so it was the easiest to remove. Cracks everywhere.
Corroded steel. I reckon there was some moisture from the clay that kept being locked in there.
A signature, who knows how old. "lu-ču". It is Slavic, but it will take a loooong research to find out what is it. Also some numbers, perhaps model number?
There is an emblem too, which will help in that quest. A rectangle, turned point down, with the corners cut, and inscription "MIAG" inside.
A better piece
Lots of adult puzzles to play with!
In conclusion, I have decided to remove the metal shell, and get a better one, thicker SS steel one. Perhaps even longer. The current one is 500 mm long, but I could find a longer replacement, just to store more fuel inside. It makes no difference, in my opinion.
I was searching hard for a stainless steel pipe fi 220 x 500 tall and 1 mm thick 304. There virtually none of that measurement, unless if I found an insulated external ss flue and cut it all apart, which would prove too costly and with extra spare parts. So I thought about making my own. Well, not by myself, but to give someone a piece of ss plate and have them weld the edge or rolled seam the edge. Since I only have a lot of big factories, finding someone to do it for me was hard. But after a lot of phone calls, one guy heard the burden in my voice (wanting it for my ma, as a Christmas present), he offered help. He made it in no time, and very accurate as well. Hats down to him.
Until I got my hands on one I wire brushed and dunked all the rusty cast iron parts into white vinegar for a few hours (days also, I am forgetful), then into soapy water bucket and then repeat. Wire brush, vinegar, water and a little bit of WD40 in the end. Beautiful dark gray/blue patina. I will degrease them with nitro before painting them.
Yesterday I went to a hardware store to buy high temperature silicone matte spray, 4,5 pounds of refractory dust (the one which can be mixed with regular water), 1200 C silicone sealant intended for kilns and such, and of course refractory bricks, 250x125x30 mm. Twelve of them...in my backpack! :D
Slow progress, but progress indeed.
Removing the rust with phosphoric acid., painting it black. Drilling the holes was a pain in the ass though. Several fittings before the summer job begun. Then I assembled the bricks, and added
The extra pipe for secondary air inlet.
Coming home, I had to continue. It was relatively hot until two three days ago...from 16C to...5C. So I want to rush, to get the house warm.
I fired up the stove to test the insulation and the air intake pipe for secondary combustion. Unfortunately, I cut only the upper part, above the pipe joint, using the angle grinder, and 6 holes on the hex cap. It works only when the stove is overfed with wood. I think it might be fused to the lower part at the moment so I can't take it out and cut it some more :D
But, I have not sealed the cast iron head with clay from within, or bolted it at all. I just dry fitted it. So, I will know if the pipe works only when I seal the gate airtight- it doesn't have a piece of glass yet, to serve as a window. Only then will I see if there is any use of the pipe. And I have to seal all parts to prevent smoke leakage.
White hot heart core during day light.
The stove has a naturally good draft, being cigarette shaped. And without any aid, the flames vortex inside. For you who don't understand why it is important...it really isn't that much, but vortexing just burns more stuff within less space. A curve uses more space than a straight line.
Also there is no smoke or debris once the stove gets hot.
The secondary air intake ignited at this point
The grate holds embers well. They don't move when I open the first gates.
Do you really think this might be a coal stove?
What do you lads think? I appreciate honesty!
I left it to burn outside at this point (this is the following day, second burn) and you can see how high the temperature is, judging by the white color of embers. At this point there was no fire, just the embers.
Outside temperature...well...lets say I don't want my fingertips burnt. It is below 180 C as the stainless steel didn't change colors like it does when tempering. Well, except at the top, where I didn't insulate it, as I mentioned before.