Category Archives: Biochar

Biochar Workshop at Veggielution

This was a very informative and fun event showcasing a 55 gal TLUD, cylindrical and pyramid kilns.

The below featured pyramid kiln is made from 4′ x 4′ metal sheets.  It produces 20 cubic feet (about 250lb) of biochar in one, continuous operation.  It has a draining hole in the bottom with a pipe and a ball valve ending that fits regular garden hose.  When bottom quenched it produces smoke water that’s beneficial for the plants, but specifically for germinating seeds.

Starting fire in this pyramid kiln needs to be done towards the top, otherwise there is air flow at the bottom of the kiln.  Hence we built a nice structure and put some kindling at the top.  Once first layer of wood started turning white, it was time to add another.  When burning fully, there was almost no smoke – pyramid kiln is designed to circulate smoke back into the fire, for drastic reduction in pollution.  Another clean burning device to produce biochar!

Starting fire in a cylindrical kiln.  This kiln is not designed for clean burning and produces quite a lot of smoke.

Another clean burning device – a TLUD cooking stove, designed by an American scientist and produced in India.  You can see there is no visible smoke coming from it.  It is used in India and other countries as an indoor cooking device, reducing smoke related health issues (lungs cancer).

End product form the pyramid kiln – beautiful char!

Eco-Farm Conference

We were promoting biochar at the 2015 Eco-Farm Conference held in Asilomar, Monterey, CA. Thank you all for stopping at our booth and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions. See below for a few photos from the event.

Our booth at the Eco-Farm Conference.

Frankie enthusiastic about biochar!

This was by far the largest seed exchange I have ever attended. And scion exchange was happening in another room at the same time.

With lots of seeds, both common and exotic…

and crowds of attendees.

I mean, crowds of enthusiastic attendees. 😉

There was also fun: beer and cheese tasting.

Needless to say, this was a very popular event.

Come and join us next year!

Biochar Workshop

Biochar Stove Building at Veggielution – November 2014

We pulled our resurces and enrolled a few folk to build a biochar stove for Veggielution Community Farm in San Jose. We had two metal barrels to work with, plus a store purchased chimney, an old cookie can and a couple other odds and ends. The result: full barrel load TLUD biochar stove and a kiln! See below for details and make sure to join us next time!

Cutting metal drum 1/3 length wise, with the shorter end having the bottom of the barrel. The shorter end will be part of the TLUD stove, and the left over 2/3 barrel ring is the poor man’s kiln!

Assembled barrels making bulk of the TLUD (top lift up draft) stove, after one of the barrels is cut.

This TLUD will have handles for easier handling. These are attached at the bottom of the stove, for emptying the char out.

Lunch break – delicious food courtesy of Veggielution. Char talk never stops…

Making the sparc arrestor from an old cookie can – it was just the perfect size!

The chimney with stove arrestor assembled.

TLUD at work!

We made only a little bit of char – only partially loaded the stove due to time constraints.

Biochar Workshop

We had a full room at the biochar workshop at Veggielution!

Back row listening attentively…

Paul Taylor demonstrating Champion stove.

Demonstration of a stove made from cans.

Back in the lecture room.

Thank you all for coming! We have learned at lot!


Biochar Workshop

The final product: a small biochar stove, made of 1 gallon paint can, #10 can and a tall quart can (often used for tomato juice). The stove is in pyrolysis mode – flame is from burning gasses.

After a few hours of lecture, everyone was eager to get a hands on experience of building the stoves.

Hard at work…

Making the big stove.

The big, 55 gallon stove is ready for firing! Made of 55 gallon drum and an 8” diameter, 5′ long pipe.

Adding fuel.

Mixing for even distribution.

Restrictor on.

Chimney on.

It is working! Wood chips, wood pellets and straw were used as feedstock.

Assembling little stove.

It works too!

Many small stoves were made and were all burning without smoke. Here they are visible at different stages of the burn process. We used wood chips mixed with wood pellets as fuel in the small stoves.

Thank you all for coming! It was so much fun!

Special thanks go to:

Presenter: Paul Taylor, PhD;

Host: Eric Fulda, Director of Charles Street Gardens;