Images Credit Energetec
While trying to think of what would make a TreeHugger post go completely viral, I come up with green sex in front of a wood or pellet stove in a shipping container or treehouse. And this might be the stove, the Bullerjan, that has been on every design website, usually with some variation of the line in Crate: "When it comes to heating a room or house in the dead of winter, who are we to argue with Canadian lumberjacks?"
It is a fascinating design, but it is neither new, nor do I think it is very Canadian.
The design is very clever; tubes wrap around the cylindrical combustion chamber, creating a stack effect. They are going to suck in a lot of cold air from the floor and push it out the top, with no moving parts at all. It is missing a flat deck on top that a lot of people use to boil water, but it is going to pump out a lot of heat.
They also make a model that is wrapped in stone, which will give it the thermal mass needed to radiate heat long after the fire has gone out. This could keep you toasty all night.
The current Bullerjan website is for a German company that claims that it was "developed by Canadian lumberjacks". Another website from Energetec claims that the free flow stove was born in Germany in 1982.
The British distributor give a brief history:
Bullerjan hot air furnaces have been around for about 30 years now with a loyal following in North America and mainland Europe.
They were first devised by Canadian Lumberjacks in the snowy Rocky Mountains for heating the log cabin quickly. They wanted the warmth to be evenly distributed.
These workers wanted to use what was freely available to them - wood - to warm their cabins. They set about making a stove of curved tubes and burning the wood within the barrel shape they had created. The curved pipes enabled the hot air to rapidly convect into the room. They had developed what we now know as the Bullerjan wood burning stove.
But that all sounds like an urban myth to me, about as real as Michael Palin in Monty Python. You cannot buy the thing in North America, it has no approvals in either Canada or the States, and appears to be entirely German. Oh well.