Wood burning workshop heater


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Old 09-21-11, 06:33 AM
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Wood burning workshop heater

I've been looking and looking for a forum I can get some advise from on this matter, and I think it will be ok here, hope so! and you guys might have some ideas

I want to build my own workshop heater thats wood fired, and blows out the hot air... At the moment I have a Turbine propane heater (big one) and even that only just about takes the chill off the air, with constant use on max burning 30 worth of propane at a time!

I don't have the money to buy an even bigger one, and propane is proving an exspensive way of doing it as well!

So I want to make a wood burner with a fan that blows the air out, a big one This is my idea



I'm not sure wether I'm going to use an oil drum for the firebox or a 19kg propane cylinder yet, the heat box will have good sealing doors in the front, fan in the front of each door.

the fire box on its outside, inside the heat box will have fins around it, out of 3mm steel to disapate the heat better.

The bits im not sure of... Are the fans right, or would it work better one pushing in (at bottom?) and inturn forcing air out a hole, or another in the front pulling out? this would mean cold air entering the heat box though, not just hot being pumped out.

Also should I insulate the heat box?

Just to make it clear, the heat box doors have to be opend to get to the firebox door to put wood in.

Thanks for looking, and hope someone has some good ideas!
 

Last edited by doodle_addict; 09-21-11 at 06:51 AM.
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Old 09-21-11, 10:33 AM
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You may be making this more complicated than it needs to be. First tell us a bit about your shop, the square footage, the height and the construction. Are the walls or ceiling insulated and if not do you plan on insulating them? Where in the shop would you install this heater? Would a red-hot stove be too much of a safety hazard?
 
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Old 09-21-11, 12:00 PM
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Frankly, I would not install a home designed wood stove in your house unless you pull a building permit and have the unit and installation approved, and send notice of that approval to your fire insurance company.

The risk of a fire is significant, and so is the risk that you fire insurance company might refuse to pay off on a home built stove.


I'd look for a listed wood stove you can install. A fan can be installed anywhere to circulate air around a room.

There a lot to be said for buying a new high efficiency wood stove. If you have ready access to free wood, buying an old stove off Criaigslist might be worth considering.
 
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Old 09-22-11, 04:15 AM
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The workshop is away from home some miles away, it is steel and corrugated construction and stands on its own.

The owners of the building (I rent it out) are very easy going when it comes to what you do in there, next door has a furnace he has made himself from a small skip (its a monster furnace) he uses to heat and heat his paint spraying booth.



This is the type of skip next door used for his furnace, he welded up straight along to form the burning chamer and put a seperate chamber on top with two big air movers pumping air out the top seperate chamber, heated by the fire below it.

Let me see... find a picture



Skuse the mess thats when we just started to move in as you can see its got a very high roof, and takes alot of heating. Since this was taken a tarpaulin has been secured off the raffters and loads of bubble wrap layed on top (10" in some places) So the roof is fairly well insulated.

If you look on top of the cupboard on the left, you'll see the propane heater I have... It does naff all

BTW ignore the 2CV, its not mine! I own the Capri

The workshops about 12Lx10Wx14H? (its a long way up)
 

Last edited by doodle_addict; 09-22-11 at 05:23 AM.
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Old 09-22-11, 06:30 PM
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Since this was taken a tarpaulin has been secured off the raffters and loads of bubble wrap layed on top (10" in some places) So the roof is fairly well insulated.
Unless that tarp is SEALED to the walls around the edges it is doing almost nothing. With no insulation on the walls, no real insulation in the overhead and the high ceiling it is like trying to heat the great outdoors. Hopefully the air leakage through the building is somewhat controlled.

Honestly, what you need in there is RADIANT heat, what you get from a glowing object. The radiant heat will warm the people and objects without being wasted on warming air. (It doesn't have to be glowing hot but the hotter the object the more heat it radiates.) I would be more inclined to making a stove that was placed in an area where it could radiate heat throughout the shop. That may not be entirely possible but it should be investigated.

As for the stove itself...successfully burning wood requires a fair amount of air and a grate on which to burn the fuel. Just tossing the wood in a barrel will NOT result in an efficient fire. You need a grate with the majority of the combustion air (which must be controlled) coming under the grate and through the fire. You then add sufficient "overfire" air to burn the gases liberated from the wood as it burns. Anything else WILL result in a fair amount of unburned fuel going up the exhaust stack as smoke. You also need a pretty decent draft (draught, for you, being British ) which means either a tall chimney or some kind of mechanical draft fan. Burning wood efficiently is not as easy as it first may seem.
 
 

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