There's a much faster and easier way to recycle your newspaper and create effective, long-burning paper bricks. lol. Research from NZ shows that a single household per hectare heating with wood or coal increases the risk of an infant under 3 having a non-accidental visit to an emergency department by 7%. Thanks LTM. As a mother, you should be thinking about the health of your children. So in many ways, newspapers are less toxic than they were. But for now, let me help you see the actual problem. When another sudden cold and wet period began, I quickly started scrunching newspaper. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters. Bushfires and burn-offs do cause ill-health but the smoke quickly passes, so there's nothing like the damage to health from living next to a wood stove and being exposed to pollution for the entire winter. Or start with half a bucket of water and then fill it with the paper balls. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on March 20, 2015: Hello eugbug. As I explained in my article, I can quickly make and dry newspaper bricks to use the next day during long, unexpected rain periods when I need to start a new fire. So, thanks for your comment. If you have to buy kindling and firewood, you really should buy your own paper log maker. When you burn something -- be it wood or paper bricks -- the particles in the pollution you produce are in the ultrafine size range. Where do you find a source of these fungi? I don't use sawdust or bark chips in my brick maker, so it never would have occurred to me to wrap them. What you don't use can go in the compost pile. Newspaper for paper bricks made my way will be wet enough in less than one minute submerged in water. Yes, that quickly! Good luck. In summer I use cold water. Answer: I burn mine confined in a wood burner stove so no, it doesn’t smell. Question: Does the paper smell when you burn it? Stick with me, MarleneB. It is also helpful in those circumstances when you can't access your woodpile or your fireplace simply isn't capable of cranking out enough heat to keep you warm. I am confident you will be pleasantly surprised. Tks. Hello Farouk Alam. Don't soak them. I wrote this article for the benefit of the many people who need to make newspaper bricks because they can't afford (or can't always access) wood for their wood-burner stoves. Farouk Alam south wales uk on May 05, 2014: just about to have a log burner installed great article for making bricks, going to send for one straight away Thank a lot. It begins the pressing process above the level of the frame. Were you using a newspaper brick maker? I use my newspaper bricks in a wood burning stove, burning ‘hot’. I'll be making my own paper brick soon. I just wish I had seen it back when I was burning wood! They are made for burning. This is further evidence there wasn't enough paper in the brick maker when you put pressure on. All that fallen wood becomes a bush fire hazard and is deliberately burned as part of hazard reduction. Sit outside in the sunshine with a nice cup of a herbal tea and the newspaper spread on the table in front of you, read a page (both sides of course) and then when you've finished, scrunch it up and drop it beside you. Papers are often bleached with chlorinated compounds, and the inks often contain metals and other toxins, whether they are soy-based or not. :). Regarding your big pile of wood chips, I use clay for building walls. But it sounds like you were just putting some kind of weight on a pile of wet newspaper. Don't knock it until you are home with no heat no way to cook your food because a nor'easter took your power for a week... How do you suppose those people stay warm? Random Acts of Kindness and All things Positive! It's kind of like hardcore paper mache. These don't just go up your chimney and magically disappear -- they become airborne environmental pollutants that eventually become a part of your environment. Get a few bucket-loads of it, as much as you can, mix it in with your wood chips. Burn one or two bricks at a time with your vent almost closed and you'll quickly learn how effective they can be. :). You don't need the paper to fall apart. If you don't pack enough paper into your log-maker, you won't be able to get the level of compression needed to expel as much water as possible. I could really use wire baskets the same size as bricks to hold them intact during drying time. Tonight, they are burning brightly in the fire keeping us warm. LTM's small farm is completely off the grid. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on April 25, 2015: As we move into the colder months here in Australia, I am about to start making newspaper bricks again. :) Making paper bricks is one of those seasonal tasks that makes winter off-the-grid much more pleasant. Don't jump, bash or break the brick maker. If your paper is not compressed enough, you need to add more paper! I used that technique for a long time until someone here on HubPages told of using just a lump of charcoal. It is only a couple of weeks since Sydney was last blanketed in smoke from 2017's controlled burns to reduce the bushfire hazard in rural areas in NSW. Once your handles are raised, push hard enough to settle the metal cover and the handles in place. Either way, that dead wood is going to burn. Or was it the other way round? Not sure if they sent you a different one or not ... but here's my thoughts on the likely explanation for the problem you had. :). The advice you give here is a game-changer. Making newspaper bricks using my method is quick and easy. Surface may dry up but not the deeper parts. lol. Do not use colored Flame Fires for cooking. Thank you for the clear and easy-to-follow instructions. Step 3: Pack your wet newspaper in. Print out this table of instructions to help you make your first paper bricks ... then scrunch it up and add it to your paper mix after you've comfortably mastered the process. Look under the hedgerows, under trees, in the forest, in a pile of old rotting logs .... your own locality will have grown it's own resource. Forget everything you've ever read about shredding and soaking newspaper for days to make paper logs. I sent off for the newspaper brick item from your site, what I got was a weaker looking facsimile, the items bent with just my hand pressure and I'm 76 yo, Thank God I didn't use my feet. I imagine in Alaska, newspaper bricks would be very popular, Babbyii. Heavy duty hand cleanser ( the type used buy mechanics) also contains a mild abrasive and is great for removing tar and grease. Are you able to bring them upstairs into the warmth and have them dry again within the day? How to Make a Coffee Fire Log: In this instructable, I'll show you the basic recipe for making a Coffee Fire Log. You had me worried for a while there. "Dad, we don't use those these days. Thanks. Another new study shows that air pollution (at levels similar to the amount of pollution if a few households in the area use wood stoves) is almost as bad for babies as smoking during pregnancy. I saw the part that I missed. I do, however, sometimes use them as mulch in areas where I just grow flowers. The paper logs burn best when combined with wood. As far as I know the RFS conducts hazard-reduction burns only in areas where bushfires are likely to threaten urban areas. Don't panic if you need to make more during winter. They exude enzymes which begin the chemical breakdown of lignin. I made another batch of newspaper bricks yesterday, and I'm burning the first of them tonight. However they still contain solvents and other toxins to some extent, which is why newspapers should absolutely never be used to wrap foods or soak fat from fried foods (as is the case in some countries.) I wish I could post a picture, but don't see how to post a picture. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on April 07, 2018: I've spent a lot of years living off the grid, Cynthia, so I've found he fastest, easiest way to execute most chores. It should rest just within the black metal frame. Draw hearts and smiley faces. The thought of repeating the process to make my second paper brick was enough to make chopping wood seem very attractive. Place the open brickmaker on grassy, flat ground in your garden. Question: Is this a fire resistant paper brick? :). To be honest, there's a lot of other environmental pollutants that cause me more grief on a global level ... but I respect your right to have your own fear and express your opinion. I am so happy to have a use for all of these papers I have been schlepping out to the recycle bin, and now not to have to pay 3 dollars a log for my starter wood, wonderful! LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on August 31, 2017: Bill, I doubt there's anyone who only burns newspapers, given a choice. Making a paper brick is so much easier than chopping wood. What suits one does not necessarily suit another. By wetting the paper it compresses 10 times better than dry paper so you get a long even burn from your finished paper logs. Burning a little is not too much harm, but too much and concentrated in an area can do some damage. You'll be pleasantly surprised how much warmth they generate. I'm letting you know so you could check this out before referring it in the future. There was an old rule: you can burn wood in a coalburner but not coal in a woodburner. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on October 27, 2014: Oh, and don't forget all the trees and plants I grow. Press the wet newspaper firmly in the machine. Just step down firmly and evenly where the bars cross. Perhaps you live in the tropics where cold is not a problem and your climate has no need for seasonal heating. Anyone with neighbours or is connected to the grid, should consider safer, more environmentally friendly way to heat their homes. Question: Is there a worse accumulation of soot, etc when using paper bricks versus wood? :). I failed to emphasise that inner part of the wood chip pile needs to remain moist for fungi to thrive. Thanks for all your useful hints here in HP. and if my family wasn't so diligent collecting firewood from our area to heat our home during winter, it would just be even more fuel for the Rural Fire Brigade to 'burn off' in preparation for summer bushfire threats. Therefore your brick will take longer to air dry. Take a look at it. Good to hear, WSS. Gonna try this now. Modern, efficient heat pumps/heater air-condioners have superseded wood stoves and natural gas as the most cost-effective heating. When you are packing the wet newspaper pieces into the base, don't put them in as 'balls'. Charcoal tends to be very soft and forgiving. Fortunately for me I'm surrounded by hundreds of acres of trees and bush, and the wind I often curse carries my chimney smoke away from my gardens. Just pour the water off and press with your foot again until the brick has compressed into a firm and solid shape. Thanks for adding your hint here in the comments for others to read. But I’ve never used them in an open fireplace. They are present in huge numbers but are mostly microscopic strands of mycelium. Guaranteed. This morning I returned the chosen few to their place on the top of the wood burner stove. See my notes for more explanation. Good luck with your paper bricks, Ngamminpye. Why are you wasting all that money on newspapers when the alternatives - heat pumps and reading the news on the internet - would be cheaper as well as better for the environment? Yet this is how my paper bricks look when I put my boot to work. I'm pleased to hear you are saving time and money. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-14/smoke-across... And here's a link to a news report last year including photos of the Sydney Opera House blanketed in smoke during the 2016 bushfire hazard reduction burns. We work hard and I remember helping my father in the woods bucking up tree limbs to take home to burn that the loggers left. The single most important piece of advice I can offer anyone who wants to make their own paper bricks from recycled newspaper, is "Don't shred your newspaper". If your paper falls apart, you've left it in the water too long. Gently increase the pressure to squeeze the water from the paper. Put on a boot and use your foot. Yes, I agree that those who are quick to condemn are often the ones doing the least in practical terms. It is so much more friendly to the environment than the fire starters we normally use here in South Africa, and they also do not smell as bad. Yes, I did follow the standard instructions for creating my very first newspaper brick. These bricks are not designed for construction. @ eugbug , a couple of points which you might find of practical use: Using ash to clean the stove glass can cause scratching of the surface if there is any grit present. I make bricks from newspaper to use as fuel in my wood-burning stove. It is easy to release a small amount of paper to act as the 'lighting point' on these bricks as you lay them out to dry . This is much easier than any paper brick making directions I’ve seen before. I'm sending off for a return authorization but I thought I'd let you know that the pic you show and the item they will get are very different, (a piece of crap). I wrote a separate hub about 'How I clean my wood burning stove'. Keep the process quick and simple. This info does not constitute financial advice, always do your own research on top to ensure it's right for your specific circumstances and remember we focus on rates not service. We live in the north east and my entire life until this day my parents home is wood heated. Cynthia Hoover from Newton, West Virginia on April 06, 2018: Always great to read how to articles written by you! I decided the task had to be quick and easy. Editor, Marcus Herbert. I just heard a funny story about the use of newspaper. I was surprised when I first began developing this idea by the amount of paper required to adequately fill the frame. Yet if each of us is thoughtful enough to carefully adjust something in our lives that will produce less waste, less pollution; be less selfish, less judgemental; more innovative, more considerate of the needs of others.....then we just might help to heal the planet before it spews us out in terminal sickness. You've just reminded me of another reason. I keep the glass front of the fireplace tightly shut at all times, and monitor the vents to make sure an appropriate amount of air intake keeps the fire burning 'hot'. It begins the pressing process above the level of the frame. Put on a work boot or strong shoe then position your foot directly over the cross. lol. I want the process of making paper bricks to be quicker and easier than that. I hope my answer helps you. Just do it. Here, try the Ipad. Thank you! This loosens the black and you can wipe it clean with newspaper. Ngamminlen Haokip from India on January 23, 2016: I never know waste paper could be turned into bricks for fire. This is a great article and i am looking into this for my mother who is getting up there since my father passed. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on May 03, 2014: Absolutely, Penny. :). LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on April 27, 2015: Hello again, jonnycomelately. :). Does this mean you are actually cleaning your glass my way? Now life is a dream! Mine is about 5 years old now and still getting a good work out. A great hub and voted up. Otherwise just google How I clean my wood burning stove and look for the link there. So I went to order the paper log maker and it was out of stock. Very well written, LongTimeMother...... great read, sensible and useful. Life holds unexpected twists and turns, cygnetbrown. Try to make sure they are flattened a little and overlapping each other so when compacted they remain interlocked. Making paper logs Step 2 . I reread this blog today. When it comes to burning newspaper bricks, I don't fear toxins. Advertisement. I like your instructions but it been three days and the paper is still damp because of the cheap substitute they sent me. And have you noticed how often they seem out of touch with the real world? Make a compact pile, leave it exposed to the rain, snow, sunshine, whatever the weather for 6-9 months, and see what happens. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on July 08, 2015: Hello Hendrika. opps, I forgot to mention, my newspaper brick maker came in mail yesterday. Eugene Brennan from Ireland on March 20, 2015: ....as regards cleaning tar from glass doors, wood ash is supposed to be good although I haven't tried it. But how much time and effort are you prepared to dedicate to creating each paper brick? Individual experiment will discover the best regime. familiarise yourself with the latest version. They should know. If your first attempt falls apart, you'll have little fire starters and more experience to pack the brick maker more effectively next time. Living off the grid without electricity, I rely heavily on solar power during summer, and I need my wood-burning stove to operate constantly during the colder months. HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW, CURRYS PC WORLD CUSTOMERS HAVE £100S WIPED FROM GIFT CARDS AFTER WEBSITE OUTAGE, http://www.amazon.co.uk/RECYCLE-NEWSPAPER-BRIQUETTE-MAKER-FREE/dp/B000WN6BOO/ref=pd_bbs_sr_3?ie=UTF8&s=garden&qid=1206386500&sr=8-3, http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=320166&highlight=Paper+logs. :). No need to obsess about how you do it. Don't stress. Easy as sticking it in a sink or bucket of water for a couple of seconds. Three dollars a log for starter wood sounds crazy! Audrey Surma from Virginia on September 21, 2013: Excellent instructions with clear explanations. I don't see the logic in suggesting anyone who efficiently burns wood for heating and cooking (particularly with a water-jacket in their combustion stove) should replace their existing appliances and become reliant on electricity and/or natural gas. Woody, that is a good way to do it.... cleaning the glass of blackened carbon, etc. :). Here's why ... My wood burner stove is sealed from the air we breathe in our house. If you pay attention to what works and what doesn't, you can avoid future mistakes and have a surprisingly easy time making many, many paper bricks from recycled newspapers. Answer: If you want one like mine there’s a link in my article. If not, I'm puzzled about why you posted a comment about cleaning glass here, where I'm talking about making newspaper bricks. One of my kids asked me a while back why I still insist on buying newspapers instead of reading news online and I told her I wouldn't get much heat burning her ipad. Cygnet Brown from Springfield, Missouri on January 23, 2016: I like this idea! However an additional protection would be to wear rubber gloves, although I'd not thought about that before now to be honest. That's just natural. But we always can improve how we do it. lol. Previously I had used a spray can of stuff obtained at great expense at the store.... and the can lasted about 2 cleans only! We are entering spring time here so I let my supply of firewood and paper logs dwindle. :). It is easy to avoid finger damage if you use only one hand at a time as you cross the handles into their resting position and determine which way is the 'right' way to position them. Much better for the environment than the standard water-wasting toilet most people use. You don't mention using one. Less water, same effect. Is there an guarantee, on the Paper Brick Macker? Without any input from chemical fertilizers or pest control. selvamani devendiran on February 22, 2017: what is the compression strength and durability of this bricks. So what can you do to make your own paper bricks that will be ready to use within days instead of waiting for weeks as recommended? If you leave the paper in for too long, it gets really soggy and starts to fall apart. LT Mum, it looks like AusAirqual is thinking in absolutist terms. I crumbled newspaper, wet it, overlapped it, put weight on it. I'm not getting emails from Sydney residents thanking my family for saving them from additional pollution because we burn fallen branches in our wood-burner stove during winter, but I personally think it would be better for the environment if more families did the same. Table salt is just that, regular, plain salt. There should have been much more resistance. While we were sleeping, the bricks were at a safe but warm distance on the floor. Barbara Fitzgerald from Georgia on January 24, 2016: Brilliant hub! I'd hate to think the product was substandard. This is a great way to save money and recycle at the same time. If you could seal up a house tight enough to keep out wood (or paper) smoke, you'd also keep out oxygen. ~ It is near-impossible for me to effectively press the water from a correctly loaded brick with my hands. There is enough flexibility in the base plate to stretch it out a little as you release the brick. For a tedious task like creating hand-made logs for a fire, I prefer the easier option. paper in the Paper Brick Macker to be finished and ready to use? when i make them i keep them in the greenhouse until really dry,then i stack them in the celler where they go damp again? Everyone else will tell you it is essential. I'm getting the hang of making the paper bricks. After that point, you'll be using your foot - with a strong boot or shoe on it - so your fingers are in no danger. The dead wood in the bush is harvested by local residents. Sorry for the delay. I'm not creating a work of art or a family heirloom. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on September 21, 2013: Thanks for the vote up Eddy. Position the metal plate over the top of the wet paper. We burn split logs and fallen branches from the many trees near our home, but I also use recycled newspaper compressed into bricks to supplement the wood. Just be sure to follow my instructions so the bricks look like those in my photos when you release them. Answer: No, they are not fire resistant. Yes, it would be wonderful if the world had no need for using any fuels of any type ... but that's not the world most of us live in. Thanks. hi,how do i keep my paper logs dry in winter. They will never drop further than the top edge of the black base. There's no need to fill the chamber of the fire with paper logs; you can burn them one at a time and still receive warmth. My grandfather isn't around anymore to answer. Beneath one of the photos I wrote: "Step 4: Put the cover on. But you have to give it time, lots of patience. I'm not convinced warm water makes that much difference in the construction of the paper bricks, but it certainly helps when I have to put my hands into the water and retrieve the paper on a cold day. There's no point pushing any harder. My views on the health hazards of smoke from residential burning are not based on "my own fear," but on being well acquainted with the hundreds of peer-reviewed research studies that have been written about it. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on March 19, 2014: Hello stuff4kids. You are making newspaper logs, not papier mache so you don't need to make paper mush. Rub the charcoal all over the class, keeping it wet. I believe life is too short to waste hours shredding paper and then wait days for the paper to soak before making something that will only be tossed in the fire and burned. If not, alternate their position. This article gives my tips for keeping warm in an emergency when your home is without heat of any kind. I've just seen your message. I find it easier to add all the paper at the same time so each sheet has a similar amount of time getting wet. Okay, so maybe you have a pile of papers you read months ago ... just scrunch up each page and make a pile. I'm not a fan of slushy newspaper mush, but if you were to soak newspaper long enough for it to become slushy, you might be able to use it to bind clumps of wood chip. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on February 24, 2017: I think you'd better read my article again, selvamani. I can get a redunant coalburner from my mother. KEEP LOGS OUT OF REACH OF PETS AND CHILDREN! I am so grateful to that writer who ever she was. If there's no dry wood on hand, paper logs can be encouraged to burn a long time. Will regular paper work or does the paper brick maker only work with newspaper? lol. Fire keeps my family warm during winter. Why? :). I have a pile of newspapers ready and waiting. There are numerous living organisms which break down organic matter. You'll have to trust me on this. Their heat is intense, which means there is no delay in generating warmth, and the flame helps even large logs ignite. Try both options ... using only one hand. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on August 30, 2017: You don't say where you live or how you heat your home, WSS. :), Write messages in your fire door. It is a lot faster to fill a bucket with newspaper when you are simply scrunching it instead of shredding it. Don't you have any neighbours or relatives with newspapers they throw out? "www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/articles/28841505/. Recycling paper is much better for the planet than burning it. I do hope you walk the walk, and not just talk the talk. I'm fortunate to have an unlimited supply of fallen tree branches, including lots of black wattle in the hundreds of acres of bush near my home. When you have enough scrunched pages to fill a bucket, pile them in and cover them with water. This article gives my tips for keeping warm. How much does the Paper Brick Macker cost? If there is an easier way to do something, then I want to hear about it. If coal-burning stoves are still available for sale in your part of the world, perhaps you could ring up a store that sells them and ask the salesperson. Unfortunately, it seems you didn't have enough paper in the brick maker. Toss a paper brick on your fire. Her family uses solar and alternative power sources for lighting, cooking, animal fencing, etc. Look at the photos below. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on May 06, 2014: Hi jonnycomelately. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on September 24, 2017: So tell me, AusAirqual, what efforts do you make to reduce pollution caused by your own home and lifestyle? Remove the cover and you'll see your new brick has tiny indents in the top where the wet paper has been squashed. mowcop Sat 07-Nov-09 11:46:37. I am using a Lehman's brick maker. Why waste all that money to become less self-sufficient ... and to watch the 'wasted' wood burn in the RFS's controlled fire anyway? LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on January 10, 2018: Thanks, Cathy. Then when you pushed, you bent the handles. No kidding. i wrap my logs ,when dry, in a sheet of paper as i add sawdust and bark chips to the logs ,like a xmas present with tape,it dose not take a minute ,and it keeps the log together and no mess from the sawdust. In cooler months when I have a big pot of water bubbling on top of my wood-burning stove, I add some hot water to make the mix warm. Multiple peer-reviewed studies have shown that as much as 80% of the particles you release out your chimney infiltrate back into your house, and into the houses of everyone around you. Anyway, thanks to both of you for taking the time to comment. If all your junk mail is really shiny paper, the brick may split but our junk mail includes normal paper texture. You really should learn something about the science of fine particle pollution and airborne toxics. You can make these paper bricks at any time during the year, but obviously they will dry faster in summer. If you insist on trying to push them further than their natural completion point, you are going to break something. No one has time or money to waste today. Nowadays, there are cleaner, more environmentally friendly ways to heat a home, even off grid. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on October 16, 2014: Hello Southwest Girl. If you want to read the article, Woody, there's a link above. I have the brick lying sideways as I release it from the base plate. I suspect you could have straightened the handles and tried again. There's a hard way and an easy way to achieve just about every goal in life. LongTimeMother (author) from Australia on November 18, 2016: I don't think it is possible to post a photo in these comments, Jeannie. Despite the use of soy ink, I don't even use newspapers as mulch in my vegetable garden because I like foods I grow to be organic and free from all toxins. Usually there's no shortcuts in paper mache, but you'll learn how to make these logs very quickly using a rubber mallet. In the past I've had open fireplaces in some of my homes (where even burning wood caused potential problems with carbon monoxide poisoning), but now any smoke or gases are expelled out the top of the chimney. I'm burning a newspaper brick to keep warm as I write this. You will end up with a nice living mixture of humus and nutrients that can be incorporated into your garden soil. The environmentalists would probably moan about this, butI think dioxin produced by burning is only an issue with white paper which has been bleached. The photo above clearly shows how the scrunched pages of newspaper interlock to hold their shape in the finished brick. He or she can only think with a one-track mind. My junk mail, old bills, envelopes etc all make their way into my bricks (generally mixed with newspaper) to be burned. Have you ever walked into a newsagency and asked if they have old newspapers destined for landfill? Have you tried simply rolling some in a couple of sheets of newspaper? :). If you don't already have a paper log maker, you really should get one. But there's been no RFS burn-off in my region in the ten years my family has been here. In my experience it is those who are quick to condemn that do the least in practical terms.....an almost religious zeal that requires others to do the changing.
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