Written by Phil Brown, Badger Bushcraft Monday, 18 October 2010 14:52
I recently spoke to Phil Hawkins of BushLife Essentials regarding his excellent Eco-Burner to ask how and why it worked so well. Phil had this to say: -
“The Eco Burner was inspired by an article about 3rd world country cooking inside huts. The design is also very similar to another very much smaller item that is fan assisted. As I try my best to recycle all that I use to turn into something useful I was just stacking up a load of blasted, partly cut cylinders one day and suddenly saw the opportunity and the large Eco Burner design was born.
The principal is that the burner mixes air-in with unburned wood gasses and reintroduces them to burn off the wood gas. This is done by the dry media in the inner cylinder being burned, at the same time, due to the unique design; unburned gasses are drawn down through the fire and through a perforated steel plate at the bottom of the inner cylinder. Here it is mixed with incoming air and travels up the air gap between inner and outer cylinder; reintroduced around the upper inner peripheral holes of the inner cylinder. This can be seen when the stove has reached its maximum temperature, its most efficient, and the unburned gasses igniting. It is witnessed best when very dry fuel is used in ideally low wind and low light situations. The ring of gas jets can be clearly seen and the wood just seems to charcoal and reduce to next to nothing. If burning mildly damp wood, keep it small and alternate between loading damp and dry to keep the fire burning hot.
Our first trial burn after manufacture was for 3 1/2 hrs and we burned a large amount of dry wood. At the end of this trial, we removed only a large mug of fine ash. The burn, when hot is very clean and gives off far less unburned gasses and smoke. Minimal ash is produced due to the high efficiency.
All in all I am very pleased with the results. I do make a smaller version of this using the 4.5kg cylinders but the inners for this are very hard to find.”
I’m now just waiting for an opportunity to get some of the low light pictures for a follow up article. Watch this blog!