Paper Log Maker
|Price:||$14.99 + $5.99 shipping|
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- Sturdy construction
- Easy to use
- Produces a single fire-ready, brick-shaped log
- A cost-effective solution to buying firewood
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Paper Log Maker gets the fire started, cheap and easy! Turn old newspapers, shredded paper and junk mail into clean-burning, brick-shaped logs! Now it's super easy to turn waste paper into "wood"! Handles are constructed of #45 steel; Body is constructed of A3 steel; 12 1/4 x 4 3/4 x 7"h. Order today! Paper Log Maker
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The Log maker itself is a pretty durable construction of all metal. It comes in 3 parts. The outside container with the handles, a removable bottom to pull the brick out, and the press part that compresses the brick. My setup came with instructions though it is actually pretty easy to figure out as well. Basically the thing works by taking shredded paper and compressing it to the point that it no longer burns rapidly but putting it into brick form. In that regard this thing works beautifully.
Now to answer other questions you may have.
You need to shred the paper! This is for a few reasons. It compresses better and also when the shredded paper is placed in water to soak (part of the instructions) it allows the water to attack the fibers of the paper and makes it easier to compress. Shredding the paper is probably the most annoying part to me. Sitting at a shredder sort of sucks waiting for it to shred paper. A Shredder bin about a foot and half tall makes about 3 bricks Ive found. It would be much better if I was in an office setting and could volunteer to take shredder waste home with me. Either way I recommend letting the paper shreds soak for about 3 days. It seems long yes, but planning ahead is always helpful. I have done as little as a day but those ones always seem to burn faster. Two days is fine if your in an absolute rush.
Make the bricks, this is as simple as placing the water soaked paper in the press and following the directions. Water will come to the top and out the sides and it has the potential to smell depending on the ink in the paper and other factors that went into making the paper. I typically compress the log maker then place it on the side so the water that came to the top can run out. Pull the brick out and let them dry.
As far as drying goes, I set them on a piece of wood so I can move them if necessary. Ill put them out in the sun and then move them because of shade that's created at certain times of the day. It also allows me to move them to the garage if rain is coming. I typically turn them completely once a day to make sure all the sides are drying at the same rate. If your in a rush, the over works perfectly fine too to accelerate the drying process.
After they are dry its a simple matter of placing them into the fire. You can use these completely void of wood. I actually use them in conjunction with wood, Ill use maybe a log of wood to every 3-4 bricks of paper. They are smokeless as long as you use just regular paper, but adding stuff will cause smoke.
When thinking about the stars to give this product, I think of the time it saves me of cutting up and chopping up wood. Of course I could just go buy firewood but that completely defeats the purpose of buying this paper brick maker in the first place.
**I would like to add that when making your bricks make sure your filling the log maker, the less space inside the more compressed and the more brick like they become. The bricks absolutely have to be dry as well. If there is any doubt to if they are dry, place them in the over for a bit. 400 on a non convection oven and maybe 350 on a convection oven, keep rotating them and you'll get really light paper bricks.
Ignore anyone that says it does not work. It took me two batches to get it down just right so take your time. It does work but there are a few suggestions that make it work better.
First, Use shredded paper. If you try to just soak news paper or unshreded paper it will not stick together properly. Also, each batch will be a little different. Some will stick together better than others because of the different types of paper that might be mixed in.
Second, Buy a big plastic trashcan to soak it in and a small shovel. I have a 33 gallon can that I use. A half full 33 gallon can will make about 26 bricks. Also, the paper will smell bad. Some batches worse than others depending on what types of paper were used.
Third, Let the paper soak for minimum of 4 days. I let mine soak for about 5 - 7 days. The longer it soaks the better it will turn out.
Fourth, Use some type of boards to place the bricks on. This way you can move them indoors when it is going to rain.
Fifth, Be patient. It takes 3 - 5 days of full sun on average for the bricks to dry. You will have to turn the bricks every day to let the bottom side dry.
Sixth, Be prepared for a mess. The shredded paper will spill out the bottom and make a mess wherever you press the bricks.
Bricks burn well
Easy to use
Makes a huge mess
Most of the paper smells bad after soaking
Takes a long time to dry
Before making the bricks I read all the reviews, hints and watched a video on YouTube. After a few tries, my bricks now are always solid, don't crumble and burn well. I could never make enough bricks to heat my home through winter, but I can supplement the wood with the bricks. I do believe that it's important that the paper shreds are really well saturated and have had time to break down. If I drizzle old candle drippings on the top, they make good fire starters too.
UPDATE: 12/11/12: Yesterday I decided to burn ONLY paper bricks since I had many and wanted to test their efficacy. The outside temperatures ranged from 39-46 degrees. I started a fire at 9am using 3 paper bricks, one with wax drizzling; the fire went all day till 11pm, when I went to bed, fire still going. I added 2-3 bricks an hour during the day, using up a total of 34 bricks. The house stayed at 66-69 degrees. I prefer the house a little warmer and think that combining wood and paper bricks is the way to go.
Now that I know how well they work, it makes me wonder how many I can make and store during the summer. I know I can get throw away newspapers and broken down cardboard from the stores for free. It will definitely lessen how much wood I use.
I am going to give several friends 3 bricks to try -- these bricks are great and once you get the hang of making good solid bricks, its the responsible thing to do.