Stovehinge: The Collapsible Rocket Stove
First, a little about how the Stovehinge Collapsible Rocket Stove works, and why it is so efficient when it comes to combustion. This stove has the traditional “L” shaped design that allows oxygen to be drawn into the fire chamber via the split feed tube design.
The feed tube is split into two chambers, the top is the feed tube for combustibles, and the bottom is for airflow.
Heat from the fire chamber is channeled up the chimney, where there is a pot or pan resting on the grates. The heat is concentrated in the insulated chimney, thus, less heat loss through conduction. The insulation around the chimney can withstand temperatures up to 2000° F. This means the heat is not conducted through the metal and lost as it rises up to the cooking grate.
Now, On To a Short Chemistry Lesson on Wood Fires
As wood burns in a campfire, for example, it releases wood gases. The gases are wasted fuel in reality, and this process causes the fire to lose up to 50 percent of its chemical energy. Imagine if you didn’t lose 50 percent of the energy from a fire, how much more efficient would it be for cooking and boiling water in an emergency.
The heat generated by a traditional wood fire is not enough to reduce the loss of energy through the gases. However, the Stovehinge is designed to allow for greater combustion of your combustibles. This means less gases or smoke escape and as a bonus there is much less ash left to clean up afterwards.
The heat generated by this stove will exceed 1100° F, which is the temperature needed for efficient combustion of most organic materials. Nothing is wasted. Nearly all the energy available is converted into heat. Less time heating up water or food means less fuel is needed.
The heat generated will allow you to use green or wet wood. You do need a fire going first however, using dry materials, but as the green or wet wood waits in the feed tube it is being dried out, or pre-heated if you will. The moisture is being evaporated because of the high heat generated.
The stove comes with its own carrying case. The stove is collapsible for easy storage, so when it has cooled enough to handle you simply collapse it and store it in its 15″x10″x 2″ carrying case, which is included with your purchase.
- Handmade using 304 stainless steel, so cleanup is easy, use a water hose or rinse off in the nearest stream before packing away
- Assembly in just minutes, less than one minute with a little practice.
- Weight is 12 pounds with carrying case, the stove itself is 10 pounds
- Designed so it will not tip over under normal use
- Can use sand, gravel or stones around the chimney for additional insulation, the chimney is wrapped in insulation from the factory and can be used as is
I had a fire going in minutes using two crumpled pieces of newspaper and some kindling made by splitting a piece of two by four. I lit the paper and dropped straight into the chimney, and then put some wood directly in the chimney. Once you get a fire going you can then feed longer pieces in through the feed tube. Once the end burns down just push the piece in. You can maintain a fire for hours if you load up the feed tube.
I didn’t check the temperature coming out of the chimney, but it certainly boiled several quarts of water quickly. I am not much on timing things like this because under a controlled environment, it would likely take less time and any measurements I would had taken would not reflect how it would perform under more harsh conditions. Frankly anyone can boil water in his or her backyard on any rocket stove.
The true test is when out camping or when the power goes out at home. It is not complicated however, and this stove will exceed your needs (in my opinion) in an emergency. Don’t wait for an emergency though. Use it anytime to cook a hearty meal outdoors, as the family gathers around to compliment you on your very sensible purchase.
This is an outdoor stove only, you have to treat it like an open flame, and of course deadly gases are given off whenever you burn wood, or charcoal. Never use in any confined space.
You have plenty of heat from a very small amount of combustibles, so rest assured it will boil water for purification, bathing, and for laundry and of course will cook any meal you can fit in a pot or pan. Use any combustibles such as twigs, dried grasses, pine cones, bark, and wood chips.
This stove is a bit heavy to carry in a backpack. It is sized right, because it can collapse, but again, a bit heavy for the average backpacker to tote around. Its weight comes from the stainless steel, so this stove is not one that will rust and fall apart after a few years. Expect this one to last your lifetime and the lifetime of those you pass it down too.
Take it camping or RV’ing, because it is ideal for cooking foods or boiling water with very little fuel. Save on your propane bottles by using the Stovehinge around the house or around the campsite.
This is a survival stove and it is made with survival in mind. Set up is quick and it is easy to get a fire going. I tossed some wet pine cones in after I had a good fire going and they burned completely away and the fire was not dampened in any way that I could tell.
The grate for pots and pans is heavy duty and I don’t see a problem with the grates, plenty big enough for any pan. Use cast iron or stainless steel cookware however, because the heat generated can melt or disfigure aluminum pans.
Literally a handful of dried twigs, pine needles, and grasses can cook your meal. This stove is a keeper. Keep one in the car, camper, and have one for around the home for when the power goes out.
It can be carried in a pack, but know that it will get heavier as the miles add up. This is just the reality of the situation. Don’t start out with more weight than you can carry, because you do not want to have to make a choice somewhere along the trail about what stays along the trail or what stays in the pack.
I have quite a few rocket stoves, some I have made and some I have purchased but what they all have in common is they are very bulky and take a lot of room to store. Being collapsible the Stovehinge solves that problem making it a great stove, especially for your car kit (see the size compared to my EcoZoom above). It’s very compact and is lightweight compared to some of the other stoves out there and easy to transport. You can purchase the Stovehinge for $129.99 at Stovehinge.com