Hybrid Car – More Fun with Less Gas

electric heater efficiency - Page 9

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Posted by Curbie on November 28, 2010, 4:16 pm

The tree service a talked with dumps their load as needed when their
truck-bed fills-up, a load will contain trees from two or three jobs -
a mich-mash of tree varieties and I would have to take what they dump.

The chipped material looked pretty good, although I think it would
still take 2-3 years to fully compost.

The logs where 1 to 5' long depending on diameter (they throw those
into the truck by hand) so that timberjack looks like just the ticket,
along with a small log-splitter and chain-saw. Since wood wouldn't be
my primary heat source, I don't think it would take more than one or
two loads.


On Sun, 28 Nov 2010 06:09:50 -0800 (PST), Jim Wilkins

Posted by z on November 28, 2010, 6:33 pm

Maybe you should get into the wood pellet business.  That debris sounds
like the kind of thing that would make good wood pellets.  And those stoves
are pretty efficient too.

Posted by Curbie on November 28, 2010, 8:07 pm

It's not as wooded in Nebraska as it is by you, so I would be
dependant on a tree service company to deliver bio-mass to make
pellets, it seems to me the minute people figured out the bio-mass had
value it would become a commodity like cooking oil has, for the
bio-diesel folks.

I'm mostly interested in the logs for back-up heat and bio-mass for
compost and am not even particularly concerned about recovering the
substantial heat generated by the aerobic decomposition of the
bio-mass. Jean Pain's heating method.

I wonder how much more heat bio-mass that was pelletized and burned in
a pellet stove would generate than the aerobic decomposition of the
same bio-mass when labor and pelletizer energy is considered. Just
thinking about home-scale heating not a small commercial endeavor.


Posted by Curbie on November 28, 2010, 8:30 pm
 It seems to me that you're looking at a fuel density issue which seems
like what is being accomplished by pelletizing and it seems like the
same thing might be accomplished by pressing the bio-mass into
pseudo-logs for a regular wood stove with something like a modified
log splitter???

When I looked at pellet stoves and pelletizers, the affordable
pelletizers being talked about where mostly designed for food pellets
that where fed with low carbon bio-mass and the high-carbon
pelletizers I found suitable for wood chips seemed pretty pricey to

Posted by Morris Dovey on November 28, 2010, 9:48 am
 On 11/27/2010 7:44 PM, Curbie wrote:

I would think that would only be true if the outside temperature and
wind speed stayed within a fairly narrow range...

Redundancy is probably /always/ desirable in critical systems - but I
think it's worth keeping in mind that even marginal solar systems aren't
likely to fail 100% and your fallback system should only need to make up
the difference between "degraded" performance and whatever you require.

Another good strategy might be to anticipate worst-case conditions and
size your capacity such that your requirements will me met even at the
worst case performance level. Of course, all bets are off if the sun
goes out...

It's pretty normal for people to not think about what they _don't_ see,
but the backup system for the passive solar setup I show on my web pages
is a propane-fueled wall-mounted unit heater (not easy to see in the
small photos). I doubt anyone has ever clicked on the satellite image
link at the top of the page to find the heater's fuel tank.

Hints: (1) It's not inside the building; (2) it hasn't been buried; and
(3) it's not hiding under the roof overhang. :)

Morris Dovey

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