by Chris Rapp
(Salt Lake City, Utah)
I decided to modify the sun oven to see what kind of additional power I could generate. Wow! I can't believe it registered 448 degrees this morning at 11:15 am, with a UV index of only 2.
I first tried to increase the attack angle of the oven by drilling an extra hole on the bottom of the back tent pole plate, but I wasn't satisfied with the results. I noticed as the days are getting shorter the sun oven is not generating as much heat. I have only been able to cook at about 300 degrees.
When I placed the sun oven next to the sport oven I observed that the sport oven had a much steeper maximum winter angle. The only way to achieve this angle is to tip the sun oven so far forward that the tent pole will not touch the ground. After some thought I decided to keep it simple and clamp some small pieces of wood on the front allowing the oven to rest comfortably at that steep angle. This idea worked out great and only takes about 2 minutes to set up.
I measured and pieced together the additional reflectors in 8 pieces, 4 rectangles and 4 triangles. I covered them with mirror vinyl and attached them with very small clamps. This only takes about 3-4 minutes.
This was how the experiment went this morning with an ambient temperature of only 27 degrees. I started this experiment at 10:20am. The sun oven temperature climbed to 350 in 20 minutes, climbed to 400 in 30 minutes and finally climbed to 448 degrees in about 40 minutes. Wow! that was really fun. It may have gotten even hotter, but I decided it was time to cook some chicken breasts stuffed with broccoli. They came out absolutely awesome. This increased power reduced my cooking time by about 10 minutes. After I opened the oven and put the chicken breasts in, the oven temperature dropped down to, and maintained a cooking temperature of 385 degrees.
The UV index web site I mentioned earlier, if you don't already have it, is http://www.epa.gov/sunwise/uvindex.html
I included a few pictures for you to enjoy. Let me know what you think.
Salt Lake City
Great write up, and great experimentation for more enhanced solar cooking results.
I guess some solar cooks are always looking for ways to improve in every little way they can...that's what I call thinking outside of the box.
Winter time cooking does present it's challenges but it is very doable nevertheless.
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