permaculture playing cards pdc dvd dairy farming shanleya's quest permaculture tees
Permies likes wood burning stoves and the farmer likes Best cooking pot for rocket stove? permies
  Search | Permaculture Wiki | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies | World Domination!
Register / Login
permies » forums » energy » wood burning stoves
Bookmark "Best cooking pot for rocket stove?" Watch "Best cooking pot for rocket stove?" New topic

Best cooking pot for rocket stove?

Kelda Miller

Joined: Jun 30, 2007
Posts: 765
i'm gonna make me a rocket stove. so first up is gathering parts. i've heard the best rocket stoves are ones that are made for a specific pot so that everything fits really snug.

as long as i'm taking time gathering the perfect parts, anyone have an idea what a perfect pot material would be for these high-heat fast fires?

i really like glass, but it's kind of hard to get. i know not to use aluminum. and i have a feeling that cast iron 1) i may not find a good rocket stove size and 2) may heat awkardly on such a stove.

does anyone have any suggestions? I'll most likely just be sniffing around thrift stores for it, but don't want something crappy.

Divine Earth Gardening Project
rachael hamblin

Joined: Mar 10, 2008
Posts: 129
...what's a rocket stove?
paul wheaton

Joined: Apr 01, 2005
Posts: 17433
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
Are you doing something aprovecho-esque?  If so, you gotta let us come and be part of it. 

I think stainless steel would be the way to go.

sign up for my daily-ish email / rocket mass heater 4-DVD set / permaculture playing cards
world domination gardening 3-DVD set / my youtube videos / my podcasts
Kelda Miller

Joined: Jun 30, 2007
Posts: 765
rocket stove: a small stove that holds small fast-burning fire that directs heat very efficiently for cooking. I've never made one! I think I'll start with a large coffee can size and experiment.

As I've seen them, in the interior of the coffee can there are other tincans cut and arranged from the bottom (where the fire is lit) to the top (where the pot sits) plus a little chimney to redirect smoke away from the chef.

I'm sure to make some mistakes! But I'll be happy to learn from them. And I'll keep a lookout for a stainless steel pot that will fit on top of a coffee can. It's sure to get sooty and burnt on the bottom, but the bottom of the pot doesn't need to be clean!

I'll keep you posted!
Susan Monroe

Joined: Sep 30, 2008
Posts: 1093
Location: Western WA
Kelda, did you make your stove? 

How did it turn out?

I've heard new (never used) paint cans are good, too, and a little sturdier than coffee cans.

Leah Sattler

Joined: Jun 26, 2008
Posts: 2603
I'm sure you could get a small stainless steel pot in the camping supplies section somewhere. Or a small cast iron skillet mgiht work. The cast iron may take to long to heat up though.


"One cannot help an involuntary process. The point is not to disturb it. - Dr. Michel Odent
Erica Wisner

Joined: Feb 10, 2009
Posts: 892
Location: Okanogan Highlands, Washington
I have seen a ceramic Japanese "tea stove" (basically like a bucket with a vent in the bottom for air intake).  It burned a special cake of coal with holes in it, but it could have run on wood or charcoal if needed. 
It fit those cast-iron teapots beautifully, and most other pots as well - it had a wide rim with three little nubby feet for them to stand on, so there was just a slot of clearance under the pot all the way around.

If you don't want black on the pot, we used to leave a film of soap on the bottom of our camping cookware.  It scorched a bit, but it was really easy to wash off afterwards. 

Good luck.


Play with nature, make nifty stuff:
Leah Sattler

Joined: Jun 26, 2008
Posts: 2603
EKR wrote:

If you don't want black on the pot, we used to leave a film of soap on the bottom of our camping cookware.  It scorched a bit, but it was really easy to wash off afterwards. 

Good luck.


cool! I had never heard of that. I know it doesn't hurt anything but that soot always annoyed me whenever I would cook over an open fire. thanks for the tip!
North Hatfield

Joined: Feb 27, 2009
Posts: 11
Rocket stoves can heat hotter than most propane stoves. Depending on flu height and such.

Vavrek's / weblife / Aprovecho's rocket stove is a more efficent design than the normal large coffee can rocket stove.

There are two considerations when choosing a pot.

#1: Will you be making/using a tall pot skirt ?

#2: No pot skirt?

If you will be using a pot skirt a thin walled/sided pot is perfect. Therefore a stainless steel  pot is more than adiquate.

If you are open cooking then you need a pot that has some thickness on the sides to provide at least a bit of insulative properties.

I bought the stainless pots with copper bottoms.

Also you need  good insulative lids for your pots. To optimize you cooking time.

You can use dish soap or smear on a thin layer or mud to slow the soot deposits.

Both will help with later cleaning.

The rocket stove design has been around for about 3000 years originating in India.

A rocket stove is a downdraft or pressure stove. The fuel only burns at its tips.

The rocket stove pushes the smoke out the chimney instead of a draft pulling the smoke.

The smoke that comes form a rocket stove is mostly steam and  minute amounts of CO.

The rocket stove is the most efficient wood fueled cooking/heating stove/heater

That last link has a really good HOW TO book for 13$.

Some has even started using rocket stoves to make Hydrogen fuel. Since the exhaust form the rocket stove is quite clean . It is diverted into a electrolosys device .

A commercial  greenhouse not to far from here takes their rocket furnace steam and condenses it into water and feeds its plants.

Any tighter and the greenhouse would be its own independent biosphere.

As for the rocket stove designs. For cooking purposes that max size/height would be  about 18-20 inches tall.

Any higher and the flu would cause a large draft and all you will get is smoke and your fire will go out.

The cook stove requires the gases to burn as they go up  the flu. Therefore you can't make it easy for the gases to escape.

A Rocket heater has a large metal tank over the flu and the exhaust pipe is down at the floor/ground level . This is what provides the pressure.

Here is something else that might interest you as well.

It's very efficient as well.
It's in the permaculture playing cards. Here's the link:
subject: Best cooking pot for rocket stove?