How to Build a Winiarski Rocket Stove

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Short Description

  • Problem: Inefficiency of Wood Stoves, Wood Shortage
  • Idea: Insulating the Stove and Directing Heat Around the Pot
  • Material Needed: A big bin can, Ashes or heat resistant insulating material, a tool to cut thin metal sheets
  • How Long does it take? Up to one day


Due to increasing wood shortage in many regions of the world, it is necessary to improve the normal open fire cooking, and most of the stoves. The heat produced by an open fire or by a normal stove is mostly lost in the air or in the materials that make the stove. This stove design proposes to insulate the combusting chamber and to direct the heat of the fire on to the cooking pot. It can be made this way:

  • a big tin can which will become the combustion chamber. It has a hole on top, where the pot will come, and one on the side for the fuel magazine.
  • a fuel magazine made of a sheet of metal bent into a tube, connected to the lower part of the combustion chamber. It should be quite narrow and relatively long, to encourage the user to cut the wood into long sticks that burn more efficiently
  • a grid laying in the middle of the fuel magazine will support the wood sticks and let air warm up before it comes to the combustion chamber
  • Once you have connected the two parts of this "elbow" you have to put the elbow in a bigger can, recipient, and fill in the distance between the elbow and the outside recipient with insulation material like wood ashes or perlite.
  • You will put your pots on the top of the chimney, be sure they can be stable.
  • an important part for the efficiency of the stove is the "skirt": It is a piece of metal sheet that fits 2 cm apart from your pots sides, to force the heat along the sides instead of vanishing in the air.
  • If you want to cook even more efficiently, read the Haybox technique where one lets the food cooking in an insulated box after the first boil.


Success Story

Models of the Winiarski Rocket Stove has been built successfully the last 13 years in more than 20 countries

Plans and Illustrations



Aprovecho Research Center, USA, 001(541)942-8198,


Link to Fourthway's poster "How to make a fuel saving stove":


  • Design Principles for Wood Burning Cook Stoves, Aprovecho Research Center, Partnership for Clean Indoor Air, Shell Foundation, June 2005 (1MB pdf)
  • Instructions for Building a VITA Stove by Samuel F. Baldwin, 1987, Dean Still May 2005
  • Biomass Stoves: Engineering Design, Development, and Dissemination (1986) Samuel F Baldwin, VITA ISBN 0866192743
  • Cookstove Efficiency Report, Dale Andreatta, January 2005
  • Improved Solid Biomass Burning Cookstoves: A Development Manual RWEDP
  • Cooking Stove Improvements: Design for Remote High Altitude Areas Dolpa Region Nepal, Sjoerd Nienhuys April 2005
  • Improved Biomass Cookstove Programmes: Fundamental Criteria for Success.(pdf) MA Rural Development Dissertation. August 1999. Jonathan Rouse
  • Measuring Cookstove Fuel Economy FAO Forestry for Local Community Development Programme Appendix II
  • Village Earth Library: Improved Cookstoves and Charcoal Production

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- How to Build the Vacvina Biogas Digestor
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