Author Topic: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans  (Read 13297 times)

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whythehecknot

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RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« on: December 29, 2011, 12:45:43 PM »
I have a friend who is recently getting interested in off grid/solar and all that, and he just purchased a set of those Harbor Freight panels. Well he's been having a bit of fun with them, and using them to charge a single battery and then lighting one of the light bulbs that come with the kit all night just for fun. Sooo then he asked me the other day,"hey could I use these panels to cook rice with in a rice cooker?" (His wife is asian and they eat alot of rice). Well after giving him the bad news, I begin to think, "self" I said "why couldnt you be using a slow cooker to cook the beans with and save a ton of wood?" I just was given 400 watts of panels to ad to my allready 400 watts which would give me 800 watts of panels and that doesnt include my 1000 watt wind turbine Ive just built and installed on that 40 ft tower. So yah why couldnt I use a slow cooker???
  So the other day I and my wifey were in Wal-Mart and I picked up a 14.00 7 quarte slow cooker that was rated for 250 watts ( I was carefull to pick the one with the lowest usage), and then brought it home. The next day I tossed some beans into it and anxiously plugged it in. The day was sunny with narely a cloud in it and no wind, so this was going to be done purely solar. Well on high I noticed it started to pull juice out of the batteries so medium was then selcted and the wait began. I then was called to go and weld up the cultivator tow bar on the D7, which took a couple of hours. Came back and was dissapointed to see only a warm pot of undone beans. :-[ Well it was still sunny and there was few hours of sunlight left so I cranked her up on high (was hungry now and wanted beans). In about an hour I saw some bubbling, so finally they started to slow boil. But then I noticed something I hadnt before. The outer parts of the cooker, not the pot, was very warm to the touch. In fact it was then I noticed the "carefull hot when in use" sticker on the side. Mmmm I thought, this puppy's waisting alot of heat! So in one of those light bulb moments I rushed and brought in some towels and proceeded to wrap up the ole girl in some insulation. Imediately almost it began to boil now with force. After about 10 minutes it began to boil over, so I turned her down to medium again, only this time she continued to boil instead of like before only warming. "I wander" me thought, What would it take to really insull this baby in a nice blanket of some... lets say polyuathane spray foam? All I would need is a container within a container to hold it all.
  I will keep everyone posted as to how it all comes out. Any ideas would be helpfull. Has anyone ever thought of doing this before?   

TomW

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2011, 01:11:57 PM »
Build a direct solar cooker. Much more low tech and very effective. Several members use them. Downside is can only use it when sunny.

Anything making heat with battery power is going to give dismal performance.

Even 250 watts for a a rice cooker will hammer 12 volt batteries hard as you noticed.

It could be done but is a bit of a stretch unless you have a fairly large system.

Sadly  solar will likely only actually make about 80% of rated watts or so before conversion losses into and out of the batteries.

I have a large system 850 watts solar and about 2 KW of turbines with a 1350 AH battery @ 24 volts and I would not use a cooker on it unless I need to waste power.

Direct solar cooking only takes some foil, a box and a container. No batteries, no inverter and very cheap to build.

Just a thought or two. Its your rodeo so good luck with it.

Tom

hydrosun

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2011, 02:41:00 PM »
20 years ago I bought a solar cooker and did some canning of fruit in it. That fallthe sun went away and I still had canning to do and the hydro was putting out power. I had read that the solar cooker was the equivilent of a 250 watt heating element. So i thought of a slow cooker which has a 250 watt element.  I put in a very insulated box(fiberglass and electric heated blanket and pillow on top). I learned on th efirst one that I had to remove all the plastic knobs and feet. I also replaced the cord with heat resistant wire. So now it gets to baking temps after an hour. I've baked quick breads in 1 1/2 hours. I can can 4 quarts of fruit in 75 minutes. I have a mechanical timer to auto shut off so it doesn't boil over.
So adding insulation definitely cuts the watts needed to cook. the first thing I do when getting a new cooking appliance is to see if I can add more insulation. Usually I'll put aluminum foil in side the case to stop radiating heat.  Then a towel over the topp if it still feels warm. I use rice cookers, bread machines and even have a vaccuum insulated water boiler for instant hot water. The bread machine I had to cut the time to bake almost in half because it got hotter faster. And it continues to bake for a while after the heat is shut off. Last night I canned pumpkin in a pressure cooker with towels rapped around it. I was able to turn the hotplate burner much lower and still maintain the temp to keep the pressure up for 80 minutes to safely pressure can it.
So I guess I take all the measures I can to cut the power used to cook. That way all our coking can be done with off grid electricity instead of propane. I shut off the propane 5 years ago. We can also do some limited cooking or heating of water on our wood stove
Chris

whythehecknot

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2011, 03:15:55 PM »
Thanks Tom! I am aware of the solar cookers, although have not tried one yet. I should as my next project build one and see what all the hub-bubs about. You are right the 250 watt element like you and I both pointed out sucked the snot out of the batts. This is just a see if it can be done experiment, and really most of the time the shunt regulator it ticking away anyhow so why not use the extra power for something? If I can make this thing work on medium I think I might just be on to something, though quite unlikey. It would be so cool just for the convenience of things if I could pop some beans in the ole crock pot walk away for a few hours and there ya have it.

@ Hydrosun, Just curious how many watts of solar do you have? Like you we have also quit the propane for good. Water is now heated via shunt regulator, and wood fire underneath if there is no sun or wind, and all of our cooking is done with wood now on an old wood cook stove. And having done this for like a year now I have come to dislike building a fire for cooking something like beans which takes awhile and requires one to keep stoking it. And I have proved that I can cook now with a crock pot, and hearing your testimony is wanderfull as it encourages me to keep on keepin on. And wow a pressure cooker with a hot plate...sweet!!!

hydrosun

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2011, 08:32:00 PM »
I kept adding solar panels as I could find bargains. So now we are up to 3000 watts of solar panels. We also have a microhydro in the winter. When the  hydro is going full we can heat the entire house with a heat pump, so we don't have to start the wood stove on those days. The stream is only a small runoff so this unusually dryer winter has us burning more wood than the last 3 years since we installed the heatpump. Our cooking style is so efficient that even considering an occasional backup uses less fuel than an open flame burner where most of the heat doesn't go into the food. Aloaf of bread only takes250 watt/hours in an isulated bread machine. An electric oven might take 5000 watts to run. I assume that a propane oven would take even more as it is vented.  I used to make 8 loaves a week in a propane oven. the last loaves were nearly as fresh by the time they were eaten. I look at most propane appliances like stoves, water heaters and refrigerator as using a lot more energy than electric ones. But the propane or natural gas has been so much cheaper per unit of energy that ssometimes it seems to be cheaper to use them. I advised people to switch to electric refrigerators when their solsystem is large enough to run most of the year. The amount of fuel for backup to run a n efficient electric refrigerator is less than the fuel to run a propane all year long. And the appliance is cheaper to buy. An electric water heater can be complely insulated while the gas heater must be vented. I'm not sure about newer gas heaters if they can be better insulated.
Chris

hydrosun

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2011, 08:45:33 PM »
i forgot to mention my favorite efficient way to cook. After food is brough to a boil it can be place in an isulated container to complete it's cooking without any additional energy input. Look up thermal cookers for the ultamate vaccuum insulated stainless steel pots and covers. A lower tech method is called a haybox cooker. Apprevecho tests showed tha tusing that technique saved more wood than their upgrading the efficiency of the wood stove. The biggest savings is for fodd that normally needs a long simmer time to complete cooking, like beans.
Chris

wdyasq

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2011, 10:51:55 PM »
"How to cook beans" - as related to me by an old US Navy cook.

Soak Beans overnight, rinse, cover with water (chicken stock, beef stock, similar stuff), season and bring to boil. Shut off heat, wait a minimum of an hour. Beans will then need ~15 minutes of cooking.
---------

When I lived on a boat, I had a pressure cooker and had built an insulated box to put it in. While making 'breakfast', we would put lunch in the pressure cooker, bring to pressure and place it in the well insulated box and put the lid on. We would then have a hot meal many hours later. The box had an inch of rigid fiberglass insulation and then polyurethane foam. The handle of the pressure cooker had been modified where we could easily detach it to better seal the box.

There are many ways to remove hide from said cat. The adage "To a hammer, the world is a nail." also reflects on what tools one has available. One would be a fool to bring a rock to a gunfight. BUT, if rocks were all one had. AND, the fight was unavoidable. One would be well advised to gather the best rocks he could find.

Each of us has a different set of tools. The most important tool is the one located between the ears of most folks. Unfortunately, many lacking the use of that tool get elected to office or elect teaching as their profession. (NO, not all teachers fail to have/use that tool.)

Ron

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TomW

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2011, 01:33:20 AM »
Ron;

I saw a machine "caution" sign online the other day. It simply read:

"This machine does not have a brain, so use your own"

I liked that.

And, I have used that cooking method before but using a thermos. Get the beans hot, dump in the thermos and a few hours later, hot, fully cooked, tender beans.

Many ways to defur a feline but not all methods work for all folks.

YMMV as it were.

Tom

richhagen

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2011, 03:08:21 AM »
I have an 'All American Pressure Canner' I use to can spaghetti sauce and some veggies.  I liked the idea of its gasketless seal.  I noticed very quickly that it is big, aluminum, and has a good amount of exposed surface area that radiates a huge amount of heat in use.  I thought that it would be neat if it was wrapped on the sides with a vacuum chamber it would be much more efficient.  I will likely wrap it up with some mineral wool insulation or something non flamable in the future as I use a natural gas stove. 

I like the idea of putting the boiling beans and such in a thermos to finish off.  Don't know why that did not occur to me before.  (lack of sufficient use of the most important tool Ron mentioned I guess.) I have a couple I use for work or outings when I wish to keep something hot over night or all day.

Where I am at, electricity from the utility costs about three times as much per unit of energy than natural gas, so even with the inefficiencies involved, for general heating purposes, natural gas still handily beats electric resistance heating on cost.  On sunny days however, I have plenty of surplus electrical energy that in the winter is dumped as heat.  If I were less busy I could probably put it to more efficient use, but lately I seem to always be coming and going with not much time to plan, let alone relax.  I have been using a bunch in the daytime as light (400W metal halide and 240W flourescent and some LED lighting) and actually have green roma tomatoes  and a couple of bell peppers on plants in a room in my basement where that light has kept them alive.  As a dump load, most of the energy from lighting ends up as heat in the dwelling anyway.  Maybe not the best use, but it is a bit interesting to me.
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TomW

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2011, 09:04:06 AM »
Rich;

The thermos trick works treat for hot cereal like oatmeal, etc. No, not the "instant" stuff.

I did that when I drove truck decades ago.

I had to be in the loading dock in the truck while they loaded it and very early. I would get up, boil the proper amount of water, mix in the cereal and dump it in a wide mouth thermos, seal it, grab a spoon and head to work. By the time I got to work, prepped the truck and got to the dock I could leisurely eat it in peace while they loaded the truck.

Just another angle on that gimmick. In those days, a 20 minute jump on my morning really mattered.

Tom


whythehecknot

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #10 on: December 30, 2011, 11:26:38 AM »
Super info guys, thanks a million. Ive examind the slow cooker that I have bought and it seems like it could be taken apart easily just by two faseners at the bottum. There is about an inch of space in between the sheet metal halves, so Im thinking it would be easy to fill with foam to insulate. The bottum has the coil so will need some thinking on that. Mabye I could shield it with some foil and then ad foan to the lower section. Then for the top I could make like an insulated pillow. This cooker Ive noticed also has a rubber gasket and that seals around the perimeter so that when its halled around it wont leak. By adding a little weight I can cause it to make a little pressure, (nothing like a pressure cooker) maybe just enough to speed things up. This weekend I will head off to Home Depot to buy some foam, window and door formula might be the best choice me thinks, so as to not blow out the sides. 

MaryAlana

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #11 on: December 30, 2011, 02:21:36 PM »
Most of the foams you will find at Home Depot will melt at cooking temps.

ghurd

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #12 on: December 31, 2011, 11:03:54 AM »
Beans.  Like kidney/chili beans?
I think they have a high heat capacity.
Compare how long it takes in the microwave to heat up frozen chili to frozen 'something else' of the same weight at the same temp.


Solar cooker.
How about a solar PRE-cooker?
Something to get the beans up to maybe around 140F, then into the crock pot?

I saved up about 20~30 of those candles in little jars.
Either the bottom of a mostly used up candle, or those stinky gift candles nobody ever lit because the scent was nasty.
Problem:  How to get the wax out with little labor or baby-sitting involved.
Solution:  Semi clear/opaque storage box, old black dish towel in the bottom, candles on the towel, broken window glass on top, set in the sun.
Result:  Couple hours later (not sure how long it took because I was not baby sitting it), the wax was liquid.  Poured it into more suitable containers for heating and reuse later.

"Candle Wax" melts at around 140F (IIRC), so I'd guess that simple thrown together solar heater would seriously preheat some beans.
I might have a pic of it somewhere.
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Tritium

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2011, 12:36:01 PM »
Most of the foams you will find at Home Depot will melt at cooking temps.

I would be tempted to try perilite for insulation in such a device rather than foam.

Thurmond

whythehecknot

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #14 on: January 01, 2012, 11:44:43 AM »
Mmmm, perlite.... Now why didnt I think of that?

  What I was thinking of doing with the foam was to fill the sides with it and the bottum I would cover the burner with foil and then maybe fiberglass insulation under that. They use the same polyurathane foam for water heater insulation, so I think it will take a little heat. I would be leary about putting it in direct contact with the burner as I think the aroma of burning foam would not be well to wet the appetite for a bean dinner.

  Just got back with the foam so I will take some pics along the way and well see what happens...

 @Ghurd... Would love to see those pics. My next project is definetey going to be a solar cooker. Im just tired of building fires every time I want to cook something.

MaryAlana

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #15 on: January 01, 2012, 02:13:33 PM »
My solar hot air panel recently melted the spray in variety when a friend unplugged the power to it.

whythehecknot

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #16 on: January 01, 2012, 03:50:51 PM »
Just read the back of can, it says not to expose to temps over 150 F so I guess that settles it, no foam. Since I dont have perlite I will try and use fiberglass and see if that dont work.

Tritium

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #17 on: January 01, 2012, 09:07:45 PM »
perilite, garden center of the big box hardware store and cheap also.

Thurmond

wdyasq

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #18 on: January 01, 2012, 11:55:20 PM »
Mmmm, perlite.... Now why didnt I think of that?

  What I was thinking of doing with the foam was to fill the sides with it and the bottum I would cover the burner with foil and then maybe fiberglass insulation under that. They use the same polyurathane foam for water heater insulation, so I think it will take a little heat. I would be leary about putting it in direct contact with the burner as I think the aroma of burning foam would not be well to wet the appetite for a bean dinner.

  Just got back with the foam so I will take some pics along the way and well see what happens...

 @Ghurd... Would love to see those pics. My next project is definetey going to be a solar cooker. Im just tired of building fires every time I want to cook something.

If it were me (and it isn't and it ain't my project) I would use something like aluminum flashing, make a ring or two, pack them with fiberglass and go from there. The thing you want (I guess) is to loose as little heat as possible and still cook.

I honestly believe there is a market for micro-processor controlled, super insulated cooker. It could be used for cooking, canning, baking and brewing beer. It would be low power use and high efficiency. Heck, it may even be a heat pump.

Ron


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ghurd

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2012, 12:31:46 AM »
@Ghurd... Would love to see those pics. My next project is definetey going to be a solar cooker. Im just tired of building fires every time I want to cook something.

Can't find the right camera card.
Really.  It was just an oversized opaque plastic shoe box, with a black dish towel laying in the bottom, candles set in, then a (broken) storm window set on to of the over sized plastic shoe box.

It is amazing how hot something very simple can get.
I tried the container from a DQ ice cream cake (clear plastic bubble top snaps on the hi-gloss black plastic bottom).
The bottom actually melted, and it was not all that sunny that day.

If I can find the missing card, maybe I'll post a story about something "almost similar" in the solar section.
I am sure it would work a lot better than what I mentioned so far.
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ghurd

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #20 on: January 02, 2012, 04:06:31 AM »
You have a pet, or a horse, or something?
Ask your vet for a few of the BIG coolers he gets the vaccine shipments in.
He throws a few a week in his dumptster.

Get a bunch of 50-cent fiberglass furnace filters. 
Spray paint them flat black (both sides).

Stack them 3 or 4 deep when spray painting to save paint.
The paint bounces around in the fibers just like the solar power does.

Cut the cooler at 45 degrees.
Make the filters fit it, 3 deep.  2 deep is enough for the sides (not the bottom or rear).
Get a piece of thin glass that covers the 'hole' in the cooler.

Then put the beans in it.

The Pre-Before-Pre-Alpha-Prototype of this got past 180F under sort of poor conditions.
I can not find the records at the moment (go figure?) for the prototype or the solar wayer distillar, but it will get some beans seriously preheated!

Link to pics and info,
http://s701.photobucket.com/albums/ww20/ghurd1/Solar%20Still/

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whythehecknot

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #21 on: January 02, 2012, 11:29:29 AM »

If it were me (and it isn't and it ain't my project) I would use something like aluminum flashing, make a ring or two, pack them with fiberglass and go from there. The thing you want (I guess) is loose as little heat as possible and still cook.




Actually this is exactly what Ive done. I dissasebled, then wraped the outer part of the inside liner with foil, then fiberglass, then again with foil, and the same for the bottum, then reasembled. It was very simple and only took like an hour to complete. I turned it on and....well it got very hot on the inside with no perceptible heat radiating from the outer parts. Still tempted to fill with foam all of the little nuances around the foil/fiberglass/foil.
 @ Ghurd, Did you ever develop the solar distiller any more?
« Last Edit: January 03, 2012, 09:20:40 PM by ghurd »

ghurd

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #22 on: January 03, 2012, 09:46:05 PM »
No I did not.  Bad timing for the project, at that time.   ???

I have no use for distilled water, except for maybe a quart a year.

The CU tube cost more than I spent (in my whole life) for distilled water.
And my monetary situation (incredibly overly simplified) changed about 5 days before those pics were taken/dated.

My concept of the problems that design was intened to overcome are not present in a design that does not heat and condense water.
Meaning:  It will heat beans just fine.
If the beans are in cans, open the cans. (read that twice)
It would be best to make a platform(?) up as high as possible to hold the bean container.

It is completely possible (and most probably highly probable) that the foam cooler material will melt in reasonable solar conditions.
IIRC, the leaking prototype box (not show), in low sun and high winds, hit 190F in a few minutes.

On a good note, your vet gets a lot of those coolers in both sizes shown, and throws them in the trash.
Cheap blue fiberglass furnace filter are cheap, and flat black spray paint is cheap.
With well timed trips, etc, could make one for $5?

If it fails, or melts, or whatever, you gained more than $5 worth of experience.
G-

(PS- I fixed the quote issue above)

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whythehecknot

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #23 on: January 04, 2012, 11:01:26 AM »
Thanks ghurd, the reason I asked was because I do have a need for distilled water. Or rather I should say a need to somehow remove disolved solids in our water system. I built a 20 thousand gallon water tank to collect water from off the pole barn, and it works good for that purpose, however it is not enough to water the garden all year and keep our fresh water domestic needs met. The well water with its desolved calcium and salt pretty much poisons the soil in short order, hence the need for some kind of solar distillery.

   Maybe another post....

ghurd

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #24 on: January 07, 2012, 11:49:01 PM »
I believe the concept (that I showed) is sound.

My tests showed the water temp in a 'typical' solar water distiller increased sort of rapidly, until the condensation started.
Think about it. 
There is a layer of water where the 'power' is supposed to be coming in.
Where the water vapor is supposed to condense is about as hot as everywhere else in the system.

I had links to a commercial site where you could watch a video.  You could see a drop form, and get larger and larger, then smaller and smaller and smaller until it disappeared without dripping down for collection.
It is what I experienced and noticed (a LOT) in my earlier versions.  Hence the version in the link.

My shown system may have had too much heat collection compared to the collecter size.
Inside the 'cold box' got awfully hot.  Checking water temps, or whatever, was like opening an oven!  LOL, not quite, but it is a serious blast of hot humid air.

One major flaw was the collection pipe (half pipe?).  I know it was dripping off the collection plate (cold glass) faster than it was going out the tube.  The only explaination for that was it would get into the collection pipe, then re-evaporate.
A possible solution might be a SS half pipe to catch the dripping water, have a single collector plate as one side of the cooler, and have part of the SS half pipe exposed to the outside cooler air to keep the pipe cool, maybe stopping the condensed water from re-evaporating.

BTW- I also tried a moonshine still coil.  It didn't work all that great either.  GaryGary (BuildItSolar) told me it was about typical output for the solar collecter size, but I find that kind of output unacceptable!
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Frank S

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #25 on: May 25, 2012, 12:55:58 AM »
I bought this 2.8 liter rice cooker to replace a crock pot that had died after 20 years
 Rice cookers range from 300 watts & up they have 2 heats boil like crazy or just keep warm.
 Crock pots have multiple heat ranges
 Mine is a 900 watt so for cooking beans it would never work and I have yet to eat my first bowl of lice sorry rice in my life .
 I needed a solution enter the bi-metal thematic switch from a hot plate wired in series now can adjust any heat range just @ low simmer it draws about 200 watts @ 900 watts it would heat oil hot enough to deep fry if it wouldn't shut off from the built in thermal switch.

 note the picture on the box then the black sw on the pot Can't tell it is not factory 
I live so far outside of the box, when I die they will stretch my carcass over the coffin

hydrosun

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #26 on: May 25, 2012, 05:56:58 PM »
Nice mod. i suspect if you insulate it well enough that it will the keep warm setting will simmer beans after the initial boil. A thermal cooker does that without any aditional energy input. . I'm now using several electric pressure cookers that I super insulated between the metal shells and can maintain the 240F for 20 minutes afterturning it off and still be hot for several hours.yesterday I cooked a whole chicken in it. It shut itself off after 15 minutes and continued to cook. When I opened it up an hour later the bones just about melted. some things have to timed closer to keep from over cooking. But beans are simple. Just soak, bring to boil and then shut off and let it keep cooking for 45 minutes without any additional energy. Acrock pot of a rice cooker like the one you show has to keep putting in heat to replace what is radiateing and evaporating in steam. A pressure cooker holds in the steam and added insulation stopps the convecting and some of the radiating heat.

Frank S

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Re: RE electrical crock pot, and cookin beans
« Reply #27 on: May 25, 2012, 08:07:33 PM »
So what do you do with the chicken after you pressure steam it?
 Just kidding. I understand a lot of people eat chicken, about the only way  I can stomach it is if I batter and fry For me my white meat is any kind of sea food .
 Since the bowl just lifts out of the rice cooker and the cavity where it fits is about 1.4 inches all the way round and on the bottom except for 1 spot where it touches a thermal switch  I have thought about casting a clay liner to go between the bowl and the case.
  when I cook beans I like to soak them overnight in spiced water with a few chopped habaneros , onions , garlic & bell pepper then the next morning I will put them on let them come to a raging boil then turn my switch down to the #3 setting this keeps them at just under 190 degrees F. By the time I get home10 to 12 hours later they are perfect. the wife will stir them a few times during the day but that's about all that is needed.
I live so far outside of the box, when I die they will stretch my carcass over the coffin