Off Grid Heating Prototype- Copper Coil Water Heater / Heat Exchanger / Radiant Heater

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  • Published on:  Saturday, August 31, 2019
  • With an ammo box, mason jar, and copper coil, I constructed an off grid water heater / heat exchanger / space heater.

    Important to note:
    - Notice that this is an "open" system. Meaning that I made sure to leave a vent hole to prevent any pressure buildup.
    - This system is not for drinking or cooking, as the ammo can and other components are definitely not food grade rated. I designed this as an experimental heater only.
    - Once the water became hot enough, I made sure to remove the copper coil from the fire, to ensure that the temperature tolerances of the hoses and fittings would not be exceeded.
    - And of course this is a prototype, meaning that it's not perfect, but something I've been working to develop further.
    - The copper obviously isn't designed to be set directly in fire, but I simply wanted to see if the concept of heating with copper was possible. Now my goal is find a way to shield the copper from the flames in order to protect it from degradation.

    Outsider Store: https://teespring.com/en-GB/stores/the-outsider

    Here's a list of materials I used for the project:
    Copper Coil- https://amzn.to/2NJsEFZ
    Tall Ammo Box- https://amzn.to/2ZHn35A
    Metal Braided Flexy Hose- https://amzn.to/2zC1Lf4
    Rain Barrel Spigot- https://amzn.to/2LcdQy7
    Copper Pipe Connector- https://amzn.to/2Le1iq9
    Candy Thermometer- https://amzn.to/2MMFiEC
    Digital Aquarium Thermometer- https://amzn.to/2LcmAV9

    Snowmobile Camper Series:
    https://www.faceclips.net/video/XjACmr7QAU0/video.html

    Other equipment I use on a regular basis:
    Trail Cam: https://amzn.to/2Q6MD0B
    Wristwatch- https://amzn.to/2ZTuTcM
    Fiskars Axe- https://amzn.to/2EJVdhR
    Pocket Knife- https://amzn.to/2Udm1MJ
    Fixed Blade Knife- https://amzn.to/2HnrT2i
    Drone- https://amzn.to/2IPucxH
    GoPro- https://amzn.to/2XDHRee
    Camcorder- https://amzn.to/2HnpLHq
    Solar Power Bank: https://amzn.to/2Fgt4Og
    Solar Panel (similar)- https://amzn.to/2D18amh
    Propane Cook Stove- https://amzn.to/2CaGXgy
    Little Power Bank- https://amzn.to/2TeUpui
    Handheld flashlight: https://amzn.to/2unfweO
    Headlamp: https://amzn.to/2CyEe0u
    Camping Wood Stove- https://amzn.to/2UA0luc
    Backup Camcorder- https://amzn.to/2Tb3sMG
    Flexible Tripod- https://amzn.to/2EIlRrj
    Cordless Drills- https://amzn.to/2Tb4tV0
    Chainsaw (Poulan)- https://amzn.to/2IP1fls
    Chainsaw (Echo)- https://amzn.to/2VykyB2
  • Source: https://youtu.be/zwqPiZ4Wgys
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Comment

  • The Outsider

    The Outsider

     21 days ago +17

    Hey guys, I had a lot of fun working on this heater concept. If you have any ideas to develop it further, I welcome your input in the comments. In the meantime, here are a couple important points about the system:
    - Notice that this is an "open" system. Meaning that I made sure to leave a vent hole to prevent any pressure buildup.
    - This system is not for drinking or cooking, as the ammo can and other components are definitely not food grade rated. I designed this as an experimental heater only.
    - Once the water became hot enough, I made sure to remove the copper coil from the fire, to ensure that the temperature tolerances of the hoses and fittings would not be exceeded.
    - And of course this is a prototype, meaning that it's not perfect, but something I've been working to develop further.
    - The copper obviously isn't designed to be set directly in fire, but I simply wanted to see if the concept of heating with copper was possible. Now my goal is find a way to shield the copper from the flames in order to protect it from degradation.

  • Zurkster

    Zurkster

     yesterday

    Install a hot water bed!

  • Kevin Cunningham

    Kevin Cunningham

     2 days ago

    Your wearing my hat!

  • DEER NUT

    DEER NUT

     2 days ago

    Just move your coil half way off your fire. That would reduce your temp on the steam line.

  • matthew price

    matthew price

     3 days ago

    Wrap the coil around your small woodstove, an wrap it in mineral board insulation. It's used to insulate boilers an it will shrink your wood usage an improve efficiency. Also run a relieve valve out your ventilation hole to keep from getting scalded if it tips

  • Queen Street Systems

    Queen Street Systems

     3 days ago

    Not very efficient

  • William Shearon

    William Shearon

     4 days ago

    O, close the hole at the top with a pressure relief valve so you do not lose the water while your sleeping and so it does not blow up.

  • William Shearon

    William Shearon

     4 days ago

    Place it under your camper and reduce the amount of coils (to 1 or 2) if your going to put it on the fire directly and it should work just fine. If you keep it in the SMALL camper you will not be able to take the heat. You will cook in there but outside under the camper, no problem. You MAY need to open a window from time to time, maybe.

  • Sabrina 1979

    Sabrina 1979

     4 days ago

    What did it heat the inside of your camper too

  • david sellers

    david sellers

     5 days ago

    did you have to primeth copper coil?

  • sean gins

    sean gins

     5 days ago

    Seems like overkill...

  • Tahoe Jones

    Tahoe Jones

     5 days ago

    I thought that's what the hose bibs were for.
    Restrict the flow, less heat transfer.
    Way more copper than probably needed.
    Great if you don't have to move it around much.
    Sounds like lots of coast time using that can.
    I'm thinking, fill the can with some big stones.
    Toss them when it moves, find more rocks.
    It would hold the heat better, maybe more stable?
    Cone shape with the copper coils, smaller footprint.
    Bend up the last loop for an easy way to move it.
    Give the coils a good coat of wood stove paint.
    For your supply lines, I would use automotive.
    Designed for heat or cold. Way above the need.
    And pretty inexpensive. Outlast everything else.
    Hit that ammo can with the remaining paint?
    There are little temperature switches on Amazon.
    Certain temp, it triggers on. I've used them.
    Place that sensor, hooked up to a horn+ 9v?
    Super easy overheat alarm.
    Some fitting in the hot side hose, a valve,
    to vent off the hot water in an emergency.
    That's my suggestions.

  • DrLeroyGreen

    DrLeroyGreen

     6 days ago +1

    When I did this, I used an old car's radiator for the fire-pit and instead of ammo cans I used a Jacuzzi!

  • John Henry

    John Henry

     6 days ago

    Or a small car radiator with a computer fan running off your solar panel

  • John Henry

    John Henry

     6 days ago

    Why do you need the water hot air wood do the same thing without worrying about the water leaking

  • Let Freedom Ping

    Let Freedom Ping

     6 days ago

    So how do you get the heat from the can into the compact camper?

  • Chase Yooth

    Chase Yooth

     6 days ago

    Not sure if anyone has said this but you’ll definitely want to seal it up tight and port an exhaust hose from the top out of the sleeping area. Otherwise it will build up a lot of humidity/condensation.

  • Martin Flynn

    Martin Flynn

     6 days ago

    Id feel safer if you just boiled water and fill the can before bed 👍

  • David Goeken

    David Goeken

     6 days ago

    Great job! So many people can benefit in areas where there is no electricity!

  • Rifle Bear

    Rifle Bear

     7 days ago

    Great video. Not too much, not too little.