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We are not currently manufacturing the Air#Maze™ Passive Solar Furnace and are concentrating our efforts on the industrial grade HEATSTICK™ Thermal Fan. This is an awesome design concept and we will get back to it later this summer. Thank you for your patience. If you have any questions, please get in touch -- vegalot<at>gmail<dot>com or 707-442-5459.
Introducing The Air#Maze™Passive Solar Furnace
The Air#Maze™ Passive Solar Furnace is a Metal Maze Matrix of 25 Recycled Tin Cans "floating" in Space! The Tin Cans are mounted in an artistic array in a window box 20 inches square and 4.5 inches deep.
Cooler room air enters through 3 holes near the bottom while Passive Solar Heated Air flows into the room from 4 holes at the top.
We purchase the tin cans from individuals and groups to encourage their recycling efforts. The cans are then individually "re-formed," painted, and mounted onto the backing plate. The assembled Maze Matrix is then inserted into the cabinet and the top plate attached. The completed assembly contains almost 14 Square Feet (13.9) of metallic surface area in a window box 20" square and 4.5 inches deep!
. . . And it is BEAUTIFUL!
The trouble with most Passive Solar Window Boxes is that you end up looking at a big blank wall where your window used to be. Not so with the Air#Maze™ Solar Furnace. Instead of a metallic faceplate and a solid backing plate we have constructed the front and back with Clear Acrylic Panels and put the metal in the middle. It certainly does make the project much more expensive and difficult to manufacture, but it also makes it a work of modern environmental art. The metal matrix seemingly floats in space, and light is still able to enter into the room.
Yes, we do lose some of the potential thermal energy of the sun. But much less than you would think. The reformed shape of the tin cans presents a constantly varying and expansive facial area toward the sun as it moves across the sky, and there is a high degree of multi-directional internal reflection. Overall there is 13.9 square feet of metallic surface area contained in the matrix. That is a tremendous amount of metal in a window box with a total area of just over 2.75 square feet. There is 5 TIMES more metallic surface area inside the box than the surface area of the actual box.
So how do we get all that metal inside such a small space? We "re-form" the cans by bending them inward upon themselves along their longitudinal axis (see photos below). This reduces their width by half, from 3 inches to 1.5 inches, while maintaining their complete internal and external surface area. The cans are given several coats of black paint and then mounted onto the clear acrylic backing plate. Each can is held in place with two black sheet metal screws. Over 50 holes are drilled into the backing plate to accommodate the cans and an additional 7 holes for the ingress and egress of room air. It is a tedious and time consuming task.
A work of art for $115, and free shipping (continental US). Buy one now!
Excellent for a business that has a window with southern exposure. It will attract attention from both inside and out. And perfect for any home which wants to make a positive environmental statement to their neighbors while gaining the benefit of free heat from the sun. The tin cans are all recycled. One of our main design goals is to use "waste" material in new and innovative ways to solve present energy/environmental problems. The Air#Maze™ Passive Solar Furnace puts trash to work making free heat from the sun. And it is Beautiful!
So "How Hot Does It Get?" Well that all depends on the sun. How much solar exposure do you get in the winter? If you get a fair amount, the Air#Maze™ Passive Solar Furnace will add passive solar heat to your overall space heating needs and not cost you a cent in operating expense. Solar Energy is free! (. . . at least until someone figures out a way to charge for it.) There are no moving parts, just air. And the top plate is removable so that every year or so the maze can be carefully vacuumed to remove dust. And it truly is beautiful, it will add to the ambience of your home, not take away from it. Something I learned a long time ago about energy products, if it is going to go in the living room, it has to look good. We strive for excellence and beauty in design so that you will be pleased to own a piece of functional green environmental alternative energy art.
Here are some additional photos of our production model. We will post a video as soon as we can.
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Buy one now! $115, free shipping continental USA.
If you have questions, please give us a call, 707 442 5459, or email to vegalot<at>gmail<dot>com.
Below are photos of the pre-production prototype -- it was nice, it was functional, it was not pretty. But it worked!
Photos of the pre-production prototype and the tin cans before and after re-forming.
Standard Can Before Re-Forming
Cans After Re-Forming
Pre-Production Prototype, 20" Square, 4" Deep, Contains 25 Re-Formed Re-Cycled Tin Cans
The Beta Production prototype is now under construction incorporating lessons learned and a remarkable "open architecture" advance in the basic design. Photos will be available later this week or next and a Beta version will be available for sale in October. There are two basic difficulties with this project, each unit takes 25 tin cans. The cans must be clean, undented, and rust free. It will take awhile to establish a network of recyclers to create a supply flow of cans. The second difficulty is that each unit takes a lot of time. Re-forming, painting, and mounting the cans are all done by hand by an over-qualified, under-paid, pre-retirement, semi-serious, quixotic, exotic, eccentric, reformer who probably wouldn't do this at all if the very idea of using recycled tin cans to make Free Heat From The Sun wasn't so enthralling, thrilling, esthetically pleasing, and downright environmentally cool. We will price the Air-Maze™ Passive Solar Furnace to compete with other similar window box passive solar heaters.