Author Topic: DIY: Solar dehydrator  (Read 10172 times)

Offline archer

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DIY: Solar dehydrator
« on: August 03, 2009, 10:51:30 AM »

Finally finished my solar dehydrator. Started it last summer, completed most it, then ran out of summer. Decided to finish it last weekend.

Initial tests showed that on a 85+ day the inside was over 125.
I need to tweak it a bit, want to add a few more air holes between the heater box and the food box (engineering mistake here... ).
I also want to paint some cans black and put them inside the heater box.
I also need to use some type of cooking paper since I've learned that the aluminum grills sheets may react to certain foods.
This is made from scrap wood I had and the plexiglas I picked up off of Freecycle.

A few pictures:






« Last Edit: March 26, 2010, 04:19:53 PM by ModernSurvival »


From a friend: Benjamin Franklin once said that beer is proof that God loves us.
I'm of the opinion that Redheads are proof that, contrary to popular belief, Satan also loves us.
My small blog: http://journeytogreenerpastures.blogspot.com/

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: DY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2009, 01:15:12 PM »
That looks awesome.  Fantastic job.  Did you work off of plans or just wing it?

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Offline archer

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Re: DY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2009, 02:53:51 PM »
That looks awesome.  Fantastic job.  Did you work off of plans or just wing it?

I looked at various plans and then winged it. Have to try it and see how it does. Also want to try a few tweaks.


From a friend: Benjamin Franklin once said that beer is proof that God loves us.
I'm of the opinion that Redheads are proof that, contrary to popular belief, Satan also loves us.
My small blog: http://journeytogreenerpastures.blogspot.com/

Offline Roswell

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2009, 05:03:10 AM »
nice job Archer!  Is that made from an old desk? I agree the black cans would heat it up even more and quicker .  It looks great as is though.  What are you using to hold the cooking box? Are those it's permanent legs? Or does it disassemble for storage?
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Offline bartsdad

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2009, 10:17:55 AM »
The cook box appears to be sitting on some variant of a Workmate. Handy little benches.

http://www.blackanddecker.com/ProductGuide/CategoryOverview.aspx?cPath=1496.1506
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Offline archer

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2009, 04:42:54 PM »
nice job Archer!  Is that made from an old desk? I agree the black cans would heat it up even more and quicker .  It looks great as is though.  What are you using to hold the cooking box? Are those it's permanent legs? Or does it disassemble for storage?
I made the box from scrap wood I've collected.

The cook box appears to be sitting on some variant of a Workmate. Handy little benches.

http://www.blackanddecker.com/ProductGuide/CategoryOverview.aspx?cPath=1496.1506

And the base is a Workmate collapsible work bench I bought years and years ago. Works well for a number of projects.


From a friend: Benjamin Franklin once said that beer is proof that God loves us.
I'm of the opinion that Redheads are proof that, contrary to popular belief, Satan also loves us.
My small blog: http://journeytogreenerpastures.blogspot.com/

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2009, 08:28:29 PM »
Very nice.
One of the many things I need to do.
Thanks for posting this.
Very inspiring.

Offline The Wilderness

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2009, 12:12:02 AM »
good job Archer! Thank you for the post. Keep us updated on the progress of your tweeks.

TW


Offline archer

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2009, 03:22:55 PM »
I'll do so. My son and I are going to add the cans this weekend and re-test.


From a friend: Benjamin Franklin once said that beer is proof that God loves us.
I'm of the opinion that Redheads are proof that, contrary to popular belief, Satan also loves us.
My small blog: http://journeytogreenerpastures.blogspot.com/

Offline Santander

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2009, 07:07:59 AM »
Archer,
Have you had a chance to test out your dehydrator unit?
I am curious to know if it works as you expect and what improvements (if any) you have made (or design changes you would have incorporated).

Tony
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Offline Roswell

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2009, 09:33:43 AM »
Take some new pics if you have put the cans in.  How did that turn out by the way?
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Offline mxitman

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2009, 04:04:06 PM »
Thats sweet I wonder how well that would work on the rainy side of Washington during the summer, I built a basic solar dehydrator and it didn't work too well, I think that would add allot more heat...hmmm

Offline EmmaPeel

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2009, 01:47:41 PM »
Where is the moisture from the food going?  Is it vented at the top at all?  It looks great.  Or, parchment paper can be used for dehydrating as well as baking.  Depending on the residue left by the food, it can be reused too.  Biscuits don't stick to it at all so I can reuse the paper many times.
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Offline Burnt Hollow

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2009, 11:14:27 AM »
Parchment paper is a good suggestion. It is paper infused with silicon.

Offline creuzerm

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #14 on: November 02, 2009, 08:46:08 PM »
Something exactly like what you made is on my TODO list.

I've been trying to make one in my head that folds down flat for storage. I want it to double as a biltong box as well.

For indoor or cloudy day use, I think I figured out a heat unit for it.

Those tall skinny electric room heaters would be perfect I think. Rig one up so it lays down on it's side, and faces into the dehydrator box. Run just the fan when needed, or turn on the heat if a faster dry is desired.
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Offline may214

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Re: DIY: Solar dehydrator
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2013, 10:27:05 PM »
Sort of resurrecting an older post with this.

Here's a link to a YouTube video by Paul Wheaton on three solar dehydrators with some interesting design concepts

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=oVTcnCuX2Qc

I'm in the middle of my own solar dehydrator project using a broken wine fridge. Will post pics of success ( or disaster, I suppose).