Saturday, 23 March 2013

Brewing up at Foxton - in a volcano kettle

A few days ago I made part of Foxton Inclined Plane the subject of a mystery photo. But when I was there taking that photo in 2009 I stumbled across another mystery, one which was quickly solved, though.

A volunteer was tending a device I'd not seen before: a volcano kettle.

It's a simple and effective machine. A water jacket surrounds a chimney: Fill the jacket (through the off-centre spout), light a fire underneath, and the hot gases drawn up the chimney quickly heat the water. No pressurised gas cylinder, no need to worry too much about wind. Brilliant!

If the fire dies down a bit, just drop more fuel down the chimney.

The tea made this way was to be fuel of a different sort - for the volunteers working on the Plane.

BTCV - the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers - has had several rebrandings, and is now known as TCV (The Conservation Volunteers).

Oh, and just to show that here in Norfolk we didn't quite escape the snow today (23rd March 2013) ...


Nick Holt said...

Hi Halfie

Wow, what a fantastic volcano stove! Now that I'd like! I've been a fan of the 'Kelly Kettle' for years, my kids love searching for twigs to power it. There's a link to one of our posts here:
if you're interested.
best wishes

Graham and Jill Findlay said...

In the days of my youth (Long gone), a friend owned just such a kettle which was always a vital adjunct to fishing trips, it would burn just about anything. The only problem was picking it up to pour the boiling water out, it was short of a handle.

Halfie said...

Thanks Nick, I've looked at your Kelly Kettle posts. That cork bung looks interesting - I imagine that would be interesting if fired up with the bung hammered home!

By the way, I'm finding it a bit tricky navigating round your blog - haven't got the hang of it yet but I'll persevere!

Graham and Jill, the one I witnessed in action at Foxton had the merest scrap of a wire handle. Perhaps she had some thick gloves as well ...