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RMH in a Tipi

 
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We talk a bit about the tipi:

 
paul wheaton
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From the cutting room floor of the dvd building a cob style rocket mass heater.  This is 45 minutes of the intro and outro for the tipi build.   About 35 minutes more than what is in the dvd.   So bonus footage that could not fit on the dvd:

 
paul wheaton
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This is about an hour from the DVD mashed into eight minutes:

 
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New photos of the wheaton labs Tipi!!!





 
paul wheaton
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The rmh isn't working too good, so we pop off the barrel to have a look:



The gap is a bit tight - so it gets widened.  Eventually we open a bunch of spots to discover that a wood rat made a home in the duct work.  

 
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Nicole Alderman
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pollinator
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Last night was my last night in it before our new boot arrives to stay in it for the rest of the summer. I loved sleeping out there. Nights definitely got down in the 20s inside, but last weekend, with a lot of wood and milder temps outside (40s?), I had it up to 67F.

I had a little cast iron pan I'd heat up my breakfast in on the stove top, and a kettle for my water. Those were both about all I needed for simple breakfast/dinner fare.

I strung up a rope around the poles inside in a star pattern of sorts to hang things from (my backpack, boots, bibs, pants, etc.). If I wanted warm/dry clothes for the morning, I'd have my outfit hanging near the stove at night so it dried out (from the snow and mud) and warmed up after my morning fire.

With a lot of precipitation, I found the opening at the top allowed the moisture (melting snow etc) to drip on the foot of the bed. I had a waxed cape acting as a blanket tarp covering that area of the bed, but recently put up a stray rain fly overhead to see if that might help the next person.

It needs a full liner. The current one only goes about 3/4 of the way around. It also needs a taller liner; maybe get another one to overlap this one to be taller. There's a 6ft liner in there now, but 6ft on an angle is not 6ft tall vertically. A 9ft liner might work, but maybe two 6fts instead? An ozan would also make a big difference, I think. Having a lower ceiling to help retain Some of the heat would help. Eventually, new poles as well. The current ones are bowed in and are allowing the canvas to sag due to lack of tension. These things all cost money, of course, so as funds allow I'm sure we'll get to this. If someone(s) wanted to sponsor the tipi project it would probably get done faster.

All in all, I loved being in there and am kinda sad to move back to Basecamp. Waking up to hearing deer and elk crunching through the snow outside has been a delight. 💖
wheaton-labs-tipi-rocket-mass-heater.jpg
Pile of wood lasts maybe two days.
Pile of wood lasts maybe two days.
wheaton-labs-tipi-breakfast.jpg
Tasty breakfast
Tasty breakfast
wheaton-labs-tipi-wood-shed.jpg
Nice wood shed with a little log cracker out back
Nice wood shed with a little log cracker out back
wheaton-labs-tipi-exterior.jpg
🤎
🤎
wheaton-labs-tipi-view-from-door.jpg
View from the door
View from the door
 
Nicole Alderman
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Nicole Alderman
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I can't resist pretty snow pictures, and here's one that the new Boot at Wheaton Labs took (check out Jeff's Bootcamp thread here!)

rocket mass heater Teepee in snow
 
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I'm slogging through this and related threads post by post looking for details, but could use a bed solution for the RMH in my yurt sooner than later. If anyone reading this has specific feedback on the buckwheat hull pod bed in the tipi please share. Can anyone speak to whether the pods taken out last summer are the original hulls and cotton sleeves installed ten years ago? If you've stayed in the tipi do you have anything noteworthy to say about the bedding experience?
 
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I can't wait to see the teepee when I visit!  So cool!
 
Coydon Wallham
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Olenka Kleban wrote:I would like to try both options for making a 'cell' in the tipi: 1) Miles' idea to just raise the 6' liner up to meet the ozan, letting the back of the RMH bench act as the continuation of the liner to the ground, and 2) Tony and Emily's use of the 6' liner installed commonly to meet the ground, and then hang a series of blankets to bridge the gap between the low liner and the high ozan.

My thoughts on idea 1 are: It's great! The intentional liner is easier to install than blankets as a liner, and has far less gaps and places for draft to get in than a collage of blankets. This works well with Erica's suggestion about easing jetstream-like draft in a home: start insulating from the top of the house, down. I know we're not in a house, but it's good advice that I'd like to try in the tipi. The downside, however, was pointed out to me by Derick: The bottom of the RMH bench is of drystacked stone. The liner is not touching the ground, and the bench serving as the continuation of the liner to the ground might not be appropriate since the draft can now enter through the gaps through the stones, as well as cool the RMH exhaust pipe that runs through the bench. The pipe, to my understanding, is mostly encased in cob, but it were installed on top of the drystack, so the bottom of the pipes may be exposed to this cool air.


Okay, late to the party here, really sad to have missed the dancing kettle. I didn't notice a direct follow up to this idea in the thread. When I stayed in the tipi it was late winter and the entire bottom was encased in icy snow, so never got a look at what state it has attained since this. To address the theoretical operation here, it sounds to me like having air flow from the back of the RMH bench through the drystack under it would take heat that would otherwise either be conducted away into the ground, and/or randomly seeping out both sides of the bench, into a flow of preheated air carried into the main living space. The only downside I see is if the flow is strong it could be draughty on feet and ankles. This shouldn't be too difficult to mitigate with simple baffles or floor design, but this is about air permeating through the canvas, not an actual opening at the tipi base, correct?

I realize this is currently moot with no one attempting to live there longer term, but it is a nice option to have if you are not too involved in activities at basecamp in the cold season. This would be particularly nice if there is a 'neighbourhood' with other likeminds staying in the wofatis, especially Allerton.
 
Coydon Wallham
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paul wheaton wrote:From the cutting room floor of the dvd building a cob style rocket mass heater.  This is 45 minutes of the intro and outro for the tipi build.   About 35 minutes more than what is in the dvd.   So bonus footage that could not fit on the dvd:


In the interview here, Paul mentions that the exhaust was converted successfully to dip into the ground at the end and cross over to 'kiss the barrel' on the way out. Yet it has since been reverted to directly vertical from the opposite end of the bench. Anybody able to elaborate on why that was done?

Last winter, the poles were sagging in such that the canvas next to the barrel might have touched it if not for the metal shields. They were frozen in place and unable to rotate to see how much room that would leave, but for sure there was no longer room for the exhaust there as pictured in this video. I'm very interested to know if that was part of the decision to revert, did flooding around the underground section occur at all, did it end up forming a cold plug in extreme cold, ...?
 
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