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why would you use plexiglass instead of saran wrap?

by Jolee
(Le Roy, IL, United States)

Why? Also which one is better?


Thank you for your question Jolee,

One can use saran wrap for a very simple and easy to assemble solar cooker, but with the realization that it will probably not last for long, or provide the insulation necessary to hold the heat inside of the solar cooker, and it will probably melt if the temperature does get very high. Plastic wrap does work, somewhat, mainly because it allows the sunlight to pass through to the interior of the oven and will hold a bit of heat inside, but not very well.

Plexiglass is much more durable and will hold the heat inside much better and will not melt easily.
The best kind of material of this class is Lexan, which is able to endure higher temperatures than the majority of plexiglass and will not crack or off-gas either.

Now, plexiglass (lexan and such) of course are more expensive than saran wrap so you will have to take that into account. But, you might be able to find some discarded material or second hand scraps from a business that would not cost too much.

I hope this is helpful information.


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Apr 18, 2014
Testing plastic film vs. Glass
by: Jim La Joie

I have been comparing cooker performance using cooking bags and cooker performance using a glass enclosure (pryex bowls) The bagged pot heated more slowly than the glass enclosed pot. When the sun went behind a cloud, the bagged pot lost heat more quickly than the glass enclosed pot.

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