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Solar cooking thread
(04-06-2018, 07:02 PM)Cammalu Wrote: Jim, do they get hot from the black interior?

Right, the black metal interior of the box absorbs light and produces heat...lots of heat.
(04-06-2018, 07:57 PM)Texjbird Wrote: Pineapple upside down cake cooked in a very old black iron skillet?

Pineapple upside down cake is one of my favorites. I do both full sized cakes as well as minis that I put in ziplocks and freeze. One minute in the microwave and pop them out on a plate ready to go.
The bad thing about cast iron is it takes so long to heat up.
i want one of those box ovens,i bake most of my meats,low and slow
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  • justjim (04-07-2018)
The sport oven generally stays around 250 to 275 F. It can get up to 300 F and above but it should be limited due to the lid that can warp if it gets too hot. It is easy to cool down by removing the reflectors which it really doesn't need during the summer months. They are actually optional but are really good at heating it up fast or recovering from adding a cold pot of food. It can cook two pots side by side and has the ability to see lower sun. It also is not as easily affected by wind.

The All American sun oven is deeper and takes the same pots stacked. It can take the 4 quart standing pot that is my favorite to do baby back ribs in. It runs hotter, up to 350 F. It has a swinging platform that makes it easier to keep the food level. It has a adjustable leg for adjusting tilt but it can not be tilted to see as low of a sun as the Sport. The big none removable reflectors are very much affected by the wind to the point that they can knock the cooker over. So much so that a user of only yje sun oven was shocked to see I could even attempt to cook on the high wind day

Both can be cooled a little by turning the oven so that it isn't as lined up with the sun. I have been using both often daily since early 2014.
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  • TrainChaser (04-07-2018)
We have a lot of cloudy days here... does a solar oven fold down to nothing? My induction cook top heats cast iron very fast... it just has to have a very flat bottom.
A solar oven does not. Well at least the two I use do not. However reflective solar cookers can. One of the most popular for van dwellers at my talks is the SunFlair It stores in a flat bag roughly 15x19x2.5. It is the cooker on the left of the picture shown. it has a clear shield so that there is no need of a oven bag and some insulation so it can act like a quasi solar oven but my best luck is as a reflective cooker. It takes longer than a full fledged solar oven but you only notice that side by side.

The All seasons solar cooker I reviewed does fold flat and looks more like the oven in the middle of the picture when assembled. It is longer folded but it gets much hotter than the SunFlair. It does not have a shield so a oven bag is used for retaining heat and moisture.

I am working with a new manufacture that sent me a reflective cooker that came to me in a small manila envelope. He sent the next size up for me to give away at the RTR but they got there too late for my talk. The original concept was made from card stock and really folded down but was too flimsy. The next version will be made of corrugated plastic and much sturdier. I still have a few of the card stock version and could use the outline on a piece of corrugated plastic or even plastic thicker than the card stock and cover that with foil duct tape for a sturdier version. The concept behind the paper version was to make it inexpensive enough for anyone and it came in different sizes from big enough to warm a can of beans to a meal for three. He just needs to work out the durability issues. Otherwise it is more of a science class experiment or something to be used for a few trips and discarded.

You can find the plans for the All Seasons cooker online, transfer those to a piece of corrugated plastic, cut it out and cover with foil tape if you are ambitious enough.
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  • TrainChaser (04-07-2018)
Solar ovens/cookers work just like any passive or PV solar meaning the larger the collection area the more that you can produce with it. Clouds have the same effect too. Cut any device that converts one form of energy to another and it stops working. It is true with the gas to a generator as well as electricity to a induction plate.

I do not have a induction plate but I do use a Elite two burner electric cook top for a different form of solar cooking. In this case I use the power produced by my panels to run the cook top. Like most of the devices I use, the small burner on the cook top uses less than my panels produce so I can start cooking mid morning and continue to do so until late afternoon without my bank knowing it. A induction cook top uses much more than the 470 watts that the small burner does and would drain my batteries if I tried cooking all day. The cook top gives me the ability to fry food which the solar cookers do not.

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  • TrainChaser (04-07-2018), S Cello (04-07-2018)
Any experience with the Go Sun Go or Go Sun Sport evacuated tube ovens?  I can't eat large portions and they look simple and small.
No direct experience but I have studied them and talked to a owner/watched videos and such. I was told a vendor wanted to give me one to include in my talks but I was never able to get out of the RTR to make it to the big tent to talk to them.

They are the most compact of the actual ovens that heat the whole interior like my box ovens. I can't pull the temperatures reached right off the top of my head but they get very hot. The main down side is the cooking area everything has to go into. you can cook a lot of little things like chicken drumsticks lined up and even brownies but I can't see it doing anything like soup or stews. So it is very functional if you can work around that. Cleaning the inside of the tube has to be a issue too but I am sure there is a solution like a bottle brush.

A quick search on you tube should show you a lot about them.

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