What New Wood Stove Technology Would You Like To See?

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
2,760
Downeast Maine
I think a TEG wired to a solar and/or wind battery bank would be an amazing addition to an off grid power bank. I don't know if a TEG would be easy to integrate to a wood stove like you would have in a living room, but maybe to a wood furnace or boiler would make much more sense. Perhaps they could be installed in the flue for recovering wasted energy?
 

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
4,224
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
I think a TEG wired to a solar and/or wind battery bank would be an amazing addition to an off grid power bank. I don't know if a TEG would be easy to integrate to a wood stove like you would have in a living room, but maybe to a wood furnace or boiler would make much more sense. Perhaps they could be installed in the flue for recovering wasted energy?
Nothin' wrong with that. Get a TEG that matches your panel voltage and plug it right into your solar charge controller. Might need to put a couple 24v TEGs in series if you have 48v panels.
 

firefighterjake

Minister of Fire
Jul 22, 2008
18,901
Unity/Bangor, Maine
Never been a fan of having an appliance do too much at once . . . kinda like a Swiss Army knife which can do a lot, but in the end generally there are many better knives, can openers, screw drivers and forks to use vs. using the SAK.

I like keeping my woodstove nice and simple . . .
 

Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,478
SEPA
I felt the same way regarding simplicity. I don't really even like that I need a blower on the stove.

That said, the thing I'm typing this response on is a better camera, computer, phone, radio, two-way radio, video camera, etc., etc., etc. than any of the individual devices I owned previously, just a few years ago.

It is possible for a device that does multiple things to be better at each task than the previous iterations of the purpose built dedicated devices.
 
  • Like
Reactions: bholler

lsucet

Minister of Fire
May 14, 2015
1,552
San Ysidro, New Mexico
Is not just about us. There are mix feeling between us of how we like things to be or stay. It is okay. But.....
What about new generations? For sure they will like all those gadgets. I think is good cause that will preserve wood burning but at a higher levels and involving new generations. How many of our kids and grandkids etc, want to burn wood? That can give them something to do and another area for development.
 

Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,478
SEPA
Is not just about us. There are mix feeling between us of how we like things to be or stay. It is okay. But.....
What about new generations? For sure they will like all those gadgets. I think is good cause that will preserve wood burning but at a higher levels and involving new generations. How many of our kids and grandkids etc, want to burn wood? That can give them something to do and another area for development.
Well put, lsucet. If the folks working at this stuff are trying to appeal to the 50 of us old farts who are stubbornly dedicated to the way things were, they will quickly go broke.

If they figure out how to make this wood heating thing work much better, and have cool technology to do so, the market can be so much bigger and more profitable.

I think pellet stove are one example here, BK seems to be on the right track as well.

Thanks for the insightful post.
 

KJamesJR

Feeling the Heat
Jan 8, 2018
339
New Hampshire
You can buy that right now.

TEG (not to be confused with Peltier; half of the TEGs on amazon appear to be mislabeled Peltiers.)
I feel like you can build something much cheaper using an array of thermoelectric Peltiers pressed between two blocks of aluminum square stock. These can be wired into a small battery bank. I’m no electrician, machinist by trade, but the idea is intriguing.
 

wooduser

Minister of Fire
Nov 12, 2018
680
seattle, wa
How long before the government requires that the output of woodstoves go through a HEPA filter before being discharged into the atmosphere?

Perhaps a CO2 scrubber will be required as well?

See it FIRST in California!

Current stoves will be disparaged as "dirty old EPA certified wood stoves."
 

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
4,224
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
I feel like you can build something much cheaper using an array of thermoelectric Peltiers pressed between two blocks of aluminum square stock. These can be wired into a small battery bank. I’m no electrician, machinist by trade, but the idea is intriguing.
A TEG (ThermoElectric Generator) module makes electricity from a difference in temperatures. A TEC (ThermoElectric Cooler, AKA Peltier) makes a difference in temperatures from electricity. They are closely enough related that a TEG can do a TEC's job and a TEC can do a TEG's job, but one of the reason that TEGs are more expensive is that they are designed for much higher operating temperatures and higher heat differences between the hot side and the cold side. For example if you check out some datasheets from these guys, you'll see that their TECs tend to say not to run them over 190 degrees on the hot side, but the TEGs are designed for 475ish on the hot side.

So yeah, TECs are cheaper, but there's a reason, and even as a hobbyist you should probably stick with TEGs that you have datasheets for.

What you said is definitely something you could do right now, though. You could power your woodstove's fan that way, or charge your phone, or run a stovelight!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Ryan723

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
4,224
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
How long before the government requires that the output of woodstoves go through a HEPA filter before being discharged into the atmosphere?

Perhaps a CO2 scrubber will be required as well?

See it FIRST in California!

Current stoves will be disparaged as "dirty old EPA certified wood stoves."
I think you might be in a whole different thread from the rest of us...
 

allan5oh

Member
Jan 19, 2016
142
Winnipeg, MB
My thought would be to take a BK design, which is pretty damn good but automate a bunch of things. First of all have k-type thermocouples post cat and up the flue, and have a temperature sensor in the house. Have a computer take that data input plus outside temp to determine optimum thermostat and fan settings. As the fuel burns out, it will likely open the thermostat to keep the cat from stalling (this can prolong cat activity) and keep the house at a completely stable temp.

It can also self-learn and optimize the PID settings itself. Of course run it off a TEG so it's all 100% off grid. I would think quality brushless DC fans would be best. Connect this all to wifi and have the information fed to your phone. It will alert you when the cat is getting close to dropping out. That's the best time to reload.
 
  • Like
Reactions: lsucet

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
16,219
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
As the fuel burns out, it will likely open the thermostat to keep the cat from stalling (this can prolong cat activity) and keep the house at a completely stable temp.
This is already what happens. The stat opens as the stove cools. The house temp being dang stable is the result of the operator setting the stat properly.
 

heavy hammer

Minister of Fire
Jul 18, 2015
1,447
Kirtland Ohio
If anyone has seen the show mountain men the one guy from South Carolina had a truck run on burning wood. I don't believe it was e most efficient, but he didn't have a lot of money, but plenty of wood. What I'm getting at is there is certain technology out there. Running a wood stove to power a generator or a battery bank. Would be very helpful for power outages or trying to separate your self from the grid. Kind of like how a locomotive runs big diesel generators powering a electric motor. I have seen some of our substations that have giant battery banks for times when the power is down. Some of these ideas would be great I just don't know how many people would be willing to pay for it?
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
78,572
South Puget Sound, WA
Last edited:

allan5oh

Member
Jan 19, 2016
142
Winnipeg, MB
This is already what happens. The stat opens as the stove cools. The house temp being dang stable is the result of the operator setting the stat properly.
I always find at the end of a burn opening the tstat helps.
 

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
4,224
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
Cars and trucks fired on wood gas is still an active hobby for some and popular in Sweden.
https://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2010/01/wood-gas-cars.html

This technology is most efficient when the waste heat is also used for heating a space like a shop, greenhouse, etc..
They predate WWI, were used in WWII, and hobbyists are still making and using them today. All the ones I've seen have the gasifier mounted directly on the vehicle, but that is not necessary. However, given the likelihood that you will drive past a wood gas station versus the likelihood that you will drive past a tree, I think on the vehicle is a good spot for it. :)
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
78,572
South Puget Sound, WA
No problem, just put it on a trailer and tow it.

6a00e0099229e888330120a7d22483970b-500wi.jpg
 

mminor

Member
Sep 11, 2015
141
Long Island NY
Two practical suggestions which haven’t yet been mentioned for general stove improvements:

(1) The rope gasket. The vast majority of stoves (mine included) continue to use a rope gasket to “try” to create an airtight firebox. It’s such an archaic mechanism that seems so inefficient - there has to be better ideas for sealing the door and stove manufactures need to implement these new ideas.

(2) The fans. I really think the stove manufacturers should spend almost as much time researching and developing better built in fans to quietly and efficiently move the hot air off the stoves. Think about it - you could have the best stove on earth, but if the built in fan was crap - it would ruin the stove. From what I read - a lot of people have trouble with their fans - too loud, bearings wheez, die too soon, not enough settings - the list goes on. If they would improve the fans - the entire stove experience would also improve.
 

yooper08

Minister of Fire
Jan 4, 2016
618
South Lyon, MI
I'd like to see integrated sensors to monitor temps in the critical areas, as well as other variables such as load weight, coupled with analytics and automatic controls (that can be manually adjusted) to have the best burn for a given output. It would also have an app to view logged data, generate alerts (temps too low/high, ready for reload, etc.), set an optimized burn schedule for your heating needs, and ask Alexa how things are going.

Also, some TEGs to power the fan.
 

SculptureOfSound

Feeling the Heat
Sep 9, 2017
344
Wisconsin, USA
Why couldn't a cat (or secondary tubes) be heated electrically to bring it up to temp immediately (i.e. preheat the stove) via electricity generated as discussed above and stored in a battery. Seems that would help with emissions and improve burn times too