Cover: The Rocket Powered Oven: How to Build Your Own Super-Efficient CookerWe’re incredibly proud to be publishing this!

It’s a step-by-step guide to building your own super-efficient rocket powered oven. The most comprehensive build-your-own project of it’s type by our very own: leading Australian alternative technology innovators, Tim Barker and Joel Meadows.

Learn the fundamentals of rocket stove design that powers the oven, and choose between one of two designs to build. A Black Oven, which reuses an existing gas or electric oven and a White Oven, which can be made using 2 x 200lt (44 gal) drums.

Most materials required for the build are cheap and can be easily found. In fact, you may have some of them laying around your home, just crying out to be used.

A great do-it-yourself project or get together with a small group for even more fun.

You can get an ebook copy for just $9 from

This is part of our our sub-project Appropriate Technology workshops, which has it’s own website at

Appropriate Technology Workshops logo

White oven sample page img_0631

dsc01932 joel and tim bread rising

Here’s the foreword written by VEG’s Adam Grubb.

Foreword: the future of fire

Around a million years ago our ancestors learnt to control the mysterious and powerful force of fire. So significant was this moment, that by the time we would retrospectively come to be known as Homo sapiens, our whole digestive system had come to expect its food cooked, and our lungs had adapted to air pollution.

It’s somewhat humbling therefore to learn that for those last one million years – and let’s not mince words here – we’ve been doing it wrong.

Three billion people continue to cook on biomass each day. The smoke caused by this (despite our genetic adaptations) is a major health concern, and the excessive use of fuel is a major environmental one. Smoke however, is nothing but unburnt fuel, and more efficient combustion offers both more heat, and an end to the cancer and coughing.

Enter the rocket stove. First conceived by Dr. Larry Winiarski in 1982, the rocket stove is so subtly simple a technology that it could have been around for all one million of those smoky years. Talk about missed opportunity. But at least it is known now. In retrospect it’s an almost obvious concept: burn the fuel first and fully, and then, and only after complete combustion, extract the heat. At the crudest end of the spectrum, you can build them with nothing more than a few bricks and some mud. It’s perhaps this simplicity – it’s not a Tesla sports car after all – that explains why the Wikipedia ‘rocket stoves’ entry at time of writing sits at a measly 150 words. But trust us, this is a much more revolutionary technology than any over-hyped sports car.

Tim Barker and Joel Meadows

Tim Barker and Joel Meadows

No one I’ve met has as much enthusiasm, knowledge, and hands on experience in rocket stoves as Tim Barker. Tim is a perennially ash and grease-stained appropriate technology tinkerer with a professional mechanical background, combined with years of experience in permaculture. He also admits to something of a pyromaniac tendency. Thank the stars he’s harnessing it for our good. You’re helping keep him on the narrow good path by downloading this booklet. Seriously, with a dearth of good, cheap, accessible information about rocket stoves, a better person could not be found to produce this booklet. Our illustrator, Joel Meadows, is a himself an appropriate technologist, craftsperson, metal worker and permaculture practitioner par excellence. When Tim and Joel get together the ideas flow and sparks always soon literally fly. They are always pushing themselves, always learning, and we’re extremely proud to have them together in this much needed publication that can help you avoid the pitfalls, and make a great rocket stove powered oven to call your own.

Adam Grubb is Co-director (with Dan Palmer) of Very Edible Gardens PTY LTD in Melbourne, Australia, and co-author of The Weed Forager’s Handbook and The Art of Frugal Hedonism.

Read the rest of the book:

And check out any upcoming workshops at the App-Tech website:

Appropriate Technology Workshops logo