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Troels Saabye

1800 litre charcoal kiln WIP

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I'll try test firing the oven before insulation to see if it can reach 500 centigrade without.

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Cool. You recovered now?

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Nope, but the retort is in place.. got a doctors appointment - renal cholic they said -.- I really hope the alpha blockes i got will help.

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Never heard of it but sounds really painful. Good luck man.

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The same thing kids can suffer, just a different part of the organs :) . . Thanks  :) hopefully over soon - I don't have time for this :P  got a forest to fell and a ton of charcoal to make

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Finally :D the retort/oven is in place ! Now the troubleshooting begins ^^ first - let's see if it leaks -> go and buy 1300 C sealant to make an airtight gasket.

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All I can say is that after following this for 2.5 months and 3 pages, there had better be a video at the end, or a least some darn good pics ;)

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;) The pictures/video is comming ! I just need to seal it before test firing

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Okay, it's just not my year -.- went from man flu to being infected at a course -.-  But as soon as I'm healthy again time to create the seal between door and tank - then test firing

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Okay, shouldn't be too long now and I'll have the time and materials to move on. The shop is nearly ready for opening day, it would be nice to sell charcoal then.

Edited by Troels Saabye

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Troels   ...Are you aware of the amount of smoke you will be generating......I could not do that here...due to neighbor's expectation and a local solution control board.......so I do it in an open pit , which most people have a misconception of. I live in a fairly rural area.

 

.

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yep :) fortunatly - we live way out in a rural area :D I have one limitation only - can't fire it when the wind is south, anything else misses the village and anyone in a 4 mile radius. As for regulations, I found non about making charcoal or any sort of smoke.

Edited by Troels Saabye
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Okay, I'll have to stick to sealing the retort with clay - couldn't find a silicone sealant to stand up to 500 c :P  but hey, clay and dirt works.

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IT'S A LIVE !! I finally got the kiln fired up :D 100 kg of charcoal on first run a lot of charred but not completes (took 12 hours to heat up and i was impatient), but for the next run I installed a Now for the fun part : The modding and optimization. I just ordered 2" kaowool as insulation for the entire kiln ^^ it's alredy outperforming my old design in the test phase !


Bonus : used some refractory cement to seal the doors, turns out the clay under my old retorts is far better at plugging leaks :P  cheap solution. Now I just need the company supplying the insulation gets it home for next week -.- that's a looot of waiting, but I'll just do another run with the retort in the mean time

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Posted (edited)

Now the game is on, I've ordered 50 mm kaowool to insulate the entire retort,found some flexible graphite cord to use as a gasket - now i need to find a way to increase air circulation inside the retort. aswell as an IR thermometer gun 50-1800 centigrade :P just because I like gadgets and I want to know how hot the retort gets.

 

Edit : I found some gasket material for the door rated for use in solvents and corrossive hot enviroments for 20-1800 centigrade  rating ^^

 

I wonder how much time the insulation will cut off of heat up time.

 

Any ideas on how to circulate air around the wood while being carbonized ?

Edited by Troels Saabye

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20200502_122805.jpga 270 cfm fan should be a nice boost in heat up time. I don't have electricity at the kiln so im relying on car batteries 12v..

 

For the air circulation I'm going to try using a hot air fan from an oven (or build a fan with metal blades and a long shaft and a 12v motor

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That little fan made a world of difference - took 1 hour to reach 300 C outside temperature instead of 5 ^^ and the rest of the content charred in 5 hours total - now the waiting game. Hopefully I'll have another 100 kg of charcoal. I really hope the kaowool will cut even more off of the time required for a full burn

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Posted (edited)

Just pulled another 50 kg of charcoal from the retort ^^ total result : 150 kg I'm so excited - how much might the insulation improve ? The 10 cm  dirt insulation seemed to do a bit, but I hope the kaowool can handle the heat - maybe paired up with some other rockwool on the cooler side to add insulation ?

 

maybe 50 m kaowool and then 100-200 mm rockwool?

 

Edited by Troels Saabye

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Another run succes - 5 hours from fire up to close down. tried packing the kiln differently standing vertical  instead of horizontal.

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Don’t burn through it all before the kaowool arrives ;)

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Posted (edited)

Just had a close call with the kiln - a 1.8 m3 oven at 500 C is no joke - a spark and a freak gust of wind = all but a 25 kg bag went up in smoke from the latest charge, worked with the packing though, never have I seen my oven so completely charred :) so that's good... Just need to take more care cooling down and the weather.. Lost both sets of eye lashes and the brow on my left eye -.-
 

:P when it arrives I won't be forging anytime soon - making charcoal is a priority before the dry season arrives again

 

Edited by Troels Saabye

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Okay after close inspection the retort survived the burning of its charge. A few whacks with the anvil of an axe to a bent bolt and it was solved. Next time I will be using 3-4 days for it to cool back to a safe point - maybe add a temperature sensor to the top,midle and bottom of the retort - First insulation then gadgets. I'm also going to buy a ½ meter section of chimney pipe with a shut off handle instead of making it myself.

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Score :D just got a hand with loading a truck full of 10-20 cm diameter branches of beech,maple and some other hardwood nice and dry going straight to next thing : I have to build a wood drying kiln(solar) to minimize fuel costs turning it into charcoal. And I found some cheap K-type thermometer probes on Ebay, going to make three points top, midle and bottom of the retort.

hopefully I can push it down to 3-4 hours for a single run and the 3-4 days of cooling off until I figure out some way to cool it faster. I thought of making a removable insulating mantle - but it would be a monster to move + the temperature would be a thin step short of suicide to handle.

Im also looking into building a fuel hopper - right now I undersized the combustion chamber (cleaver me...) but with the fan its okay - just have to feed the flames every 20 mins..

But it'll be another week for the kaowool to arrive, so I'll use my time chopping wood for the retort, got to build up a stock, in that way I can just keep it locked and loaded and hop out to make charcoal when I want.

 

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And I just ordered 3 K-type temperature sensors and a handheld meter - going to  mount them top,middle and bottom of the retort- and the kaowool should have been shipped today - when it arrives I'll go and insulated the sides first.

 

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