Life goes on - Winter 2023

More Fly On Wood:


I’ve searched the site for any information about thermo-electric generation and came up with nothing. I have seen some units on Amazon that provide 100W of power. Since I’m running this wood stove 12 hours a day it seems that feeding 100W in to a battery bank would be a good idea. Anybody know anything about it. Seen plenty of youtubes. Doesn’t mean I trust much of what I see.


Sure TomH.
They work best with a spread difference from the hot-side to the cold-side.

So I thought it would be simple straightforward too, winter woodstoveing.
The cold-side water cooled from roof-top cool-cold rain water.

They are also very sensitive to too high of hot-side temperatures. This destroys the INTERFACE junction gate allowing negative electrons to run-dance over to cold-side; leaving circuit connected electron “holes” on the hot-side.
Some of this said in your recent put up fractal vertical mounted PV panels video.

My wood stove will spike up very HOT when unattended, not having new wood adds and then going into a devolved fully hot radiant glow char burning.

So then I speculated setting up a movable mechanical mounting that too-hot temperature sensing would spring snap away The TEG assembly.

Lots of $$$$ to set up a 100 watt TEG producer.
Too much for even DIWC me to risk without an at least projected five year pay-back. Got the $100 travel heating, or cooling plug-in 12vdc foods keeper died after one year and barely 100 hours of use as proof this tech is still immature.

Sure. I speculated also instead using IC engine generator exhaust heat as more predictable and stable. Better direct use of that pre-conditioning winter wet fuel woods.

Ha! Ha! You go first.

Steve unruh


What’s an electron? Interface junction gates? From that point on I started thinking about girls with cute butts. Obviously not something for a troglodyte like me.


there has been some talk. I don’t know if there is a thread or not. It would be TEG, peltier, or seebeck generator. It is all the same. Peltier and seebeck are essentially the same tech but one you add electrons to cool, the other you get electrons from the heat. It is basically two disimilar metals sandwiched together. It is reversible.

They have come down drastically in price.


It works for all materials with lignin not just wood. so corn stover, or switchgrass would also work. Then they separate it out, and make ethanol from the sugars, and parafins from the lignins.

More interesting then the tech is to see how they spun it, even in the introduction in the paper. Oh we can reduce the corn used for biofuels and more for food, and revert the corn fields back to nature. type of political bs.

Then it really reverts to well we can farm poplars instead of corn. While the research does try to tackle one issue with the production of biomass to fuels. The main issue is just the transportation and storage of the bulk material prior to any processing.


Tom, try to consult this site

They sell modules as well as ready to install solutions for domestic heating. And yes, price is not very optimistic :nerd_face:

And there is another module provider with little bit affordable pricing

With their modules ~200 W at price around $1000 might be possible if all the rest would be DIY


Thanks Kamil. This got my interest because a guy on a homesteading site I’m on has been messing with building one and of course google spies on you and sticks something related on your youtube feed so this is the video they put up.

Looks to be the same outfit as your first video, but three years old. I just figured that sticking one in my stove pipe and getting steady 100 watt feed to my small battery bank would be a worthwhile thing if it were just that easy, but then, nothing is really that easy. Still, if it were durable and plug and play, a thousand dollars US would not be a bad deal. When they start breaking out boards and electronics my brain starts to shut down.


Hey TomH.
There was a very important reason on buying into buy-today TEG’s I said, “You go first.”
It is in this picture I set up and just took:

Risks versus benefits.
Look at the items I put in this picture as piles of very Real&Dear dollars I did spend out.
That oil-less 175PSI capable diaphragm air compressor is now 17 years old. Had cost me nearly $300. and is still working just fine for me.
The upright drill press is a super heavy late 1990’s made-in-Taiwan given to me as worn and used. Be $200+ now for a made-in-mainland-China new one. What the gifter-fellow then had to spend out for a new replacement. Or, was it over $1,000 for a USA made new drill press?
The new Yardman machine was the just at $2,000 plus a bit more. Equivalent for setting up a 200 watt thermal-electric generator. Very, little risk on the Yardmans as all has been years proven designs now. Known usage wearing points. Known multi parts suppliers.
The two Millwaukie 5.0 battery pacs are the years proven now stable tech cells and internal BMS. NO risk there. For a pack of two more along with a second charger would be ~$300. USD.

Instead I did take a risk against the most conservative advices on the single newer tech pouch cell Forge 6.0 pac. Working the hell out of it now. While still under warranty.
Some one has to really works prove out this new-tech.
Was $170. USD on promo sale. Plus tax. Plus go-for drive getting it. Call it an easy $200. USD I did spend out.

$200 USD is my limit on maybe-will; maybe-get-bit-in-the-ass trialing.
For a real current $1,000 USD a fellow can on spring sale buy a Honda 2200 IC engine inverter-generator. It Will have a performance warranty. It will on gasoline make 500 watts for 8.1 hours on one .95 gallon tank of gasoline. At 121CC it can be charcoal gas fueled just as Gary Gilmore showed years ago.
You already make the charcoal!

As KiristijanL. recently showed on his forge hearth making work-heating wood charcoal in-place you have to learn-yourself to overlook the burning off flames as just the most direct way to get to work moving forwards. ChuckW. and the ships building Norse showed by making forge charcoal in-place that conifer woods can be metals worked with. You do not absolutely have to have fine quality hardwood charcoal.

It is really the old, “Do not cry over split milk.” Rejoice over what you did get done with the milk that got put to use.
Steve unruh


The crux of the bisquit right there Steve. Everything you mentioned I understand perfectly how they work and can repair any of them or adapt them with junk I have laying around, Other than the batteries. Something that needs a chip which will probably break down and then become more or less useless, is not for me regardless of how appealing the end result is if it stayed functioning.


Here is a rare picture today I will be bold enough to put up:

The stove is burning cleanly and heating on a 20% mix of last solar summers dried Douglas Fir wood ( the third row stack to the right), and 80% mix of two months being rained on November collected up wet wood.
That 50% by weight wet wood after 1-2 days inside up next TOO CLOSE!! to the wood stove being reduced down to ~30% moisture. Good-enough, fine then.

How can I do this??
The drying wood is a mix of Western Red cedar and white fir conifer woods.
I do feel touch the upper cribbed wood pieces every 1-2 hours stove refueling. Cold to the touch when wet. Heating after the moisture is vaporized out. My reading chair is 4 feet away.
This is very much a hands-on operation.

I tried this with November storm windfall green Maple. A big fail. Even after 3-4 days up close to wood stove drying when put into the stove as new fuel add, I would burn out and lose my char bed before that damn maple would dry further, stop hissing and burn down enough to to go into char bed replenishing.

Fellows this all does corresponds a lot to woodgasing with raw woods. Drying rate factors. Volatiles to char ratios. Ashing percentages. Energy release rates.

I looked it up on a globe and then maps . . . when I say Eastern-boys with hardwoods I mean all east of North American 125 degrees West longitude.
Out here in far-west of Northern California, western Oregon, Washington, British Columbia up thru the Alaskan panhandle; we learn to do just fine with our conifers.

Do what is difficult today to be able to do-with in any given tomorrow.
That is woodgasing for engine fuels.
Steve unruh


The 1000 bucks has more to do with the liquid heatsink. Which is aluminum with channels for the liquid to flow. Similar to what they used for overclocking Computer CPUs and graphics cards. In fact if you found one the right size, you could probably fnd that significantly cheaper. The module inside is probably like 20-40 bucks. You could probably make a heat sink. Maybe a zig-zag with the bendable plumbing copper and pouring liquid aluminum over it would work.

Here is one with a motor for 20 bucks, but they don’t give the rated output.

There is no way it is 1v and 1HP. But for 20 bucks you can experiment with it. However, it is curved to fit around a stovepipe. You can also find flat ones. But if you buy just the TEG module, you will need a heatsink.

It is all about the temperature differential.


Hey Fella’s,
you get much Fairy-Frost where you live?


Hello Mr. Steve .

Yes I have seen it before but don’t know what causes it :slightly_smiling_face:


A clear night sky will cool down exposed surfaces more than you would guess.

I think this happens when air temperatures are a touch above freezing but surfaces drop below freezing from radiating heat into the night sky. Frost collects on the colder bits while nothing collects in other spots?

You can see the frost is on sky facing surfaces out of contact with the ground which is presumably warmer. That’s my guess anyway but an explanation involving fairies is a lot more fun.


Here TomH.
Here is one long on enthusiasm, short on details.
I actually do like the enthusiasm, and energy reasonings:

Read the expanded comments; and hear answered this on does have liquid pumped cooling. The heated water claimed to be heat recoverable even.

But as I said . . . someone else, you-go-first. I’ll watch and listen.


The water coming back after a run through my floors is about 70 to 80F and the pumps run anyway so no additional power used but I don’t have the energy to get involved in something like this. Twenty years ago I would probably been all gung ho.


As I said this presentation in high on enthusiasm. IMHO actually spot-on about energy.
Short on details like pricing.
Very, very naive about the in-States; Countries and localities social-political acceptance for any new usage of solid fuels using. And oblivious to the failure hoops that will be thrown up to impeded certification and legal installations and usages.

Again the meat-info is in the comments and response answers.
Then is pounded home that this is a fund raising video. This system will be not be able to get approval for sale in the States of Washington, Oregon, and especially California. Unlikely in the seven-eight East-Coast states now following California’s lead for ANY emissions and carbons usage reductions. That’s a full one quarter of the USofA. now. So a very poor thing to invest your saved money into.

So invest in yourself for yourself.
Here is a much more interesting video:

Ha! Do note watched on YouTube, also a fund-me raiser.
But only 2-3 weeks old from this winter at least should have better current information on the hardware.


The problem is he doesn’t really know what he is doing. Im not seeing much of anything in the comments that isn’t pretty common knowledge either… Did you post the right video?

1 Like

Yes. Absolutely the right video.
I was not saying he had any good answers. A dunked into flowing flowing stream water wheel will never make much watts at all.
I am saying, and will continue to say: that so far all Thermal Electric Generators are wasted efforts as far as something common man affordable useable. Sustainable affordable useable.
We are not NASA able to do cost-plus throw-moneys-at-it for single digit percentage results.
A-n-y-t-h-i-n-g you would dump $$$, time and efforts into will give you a better return in useable watts and hours of service.

Hell. Build a small scale model steam system can give 1000 watts as long as you are willing to feed the wood to it. Do the boilers descaling maintenances an all other lubes washing off steam wearing out things repairing and restoring.
Hell, he did not even have the reasonable sense to make charcoal in his old bulk wood burning shop stove and then charcoal system fuel that outside engine generator.

ONLY applicable results count in the real, real world that can, and will reach in and hard touch your lives. All else is mental masterbatons. Save that part of you for music and arts.
Do not be the fool giving these guys your money.
Steve unruh