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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater

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LonM

01-21-2013 19:34:23




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With the recent cold snap we have been thinking of ways to keep our 8' tire tank thawed out some. Having it freeze in on the sides really cuts the capacity down. We don't want to use electricity. Have any of you made or used corn cob burners to keep the ice to a minimum? I am thinking about building one but need some guidance on sizes and designs. We are in western MN. Thanks for any help!
LonM

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LonM

01-22-2013 11:54:38




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
Thanks for all the suggestions- our current setup relies on water trickling in most of the time from a spring, but as dry as it has been the water doesn't flow like it used to and seems to freeze up a little worse than before. At any rate, we still had to chop a couple inches of ice every morning and had to skin the ice off a couple times throughout the day, and I would like to get away from some of that. If any of you have any pictures of a wood or fuel-fired heater in place, I would appreciate seeing them. Mostly what I need to know is how to set it up so it drafts properly to burn efficiently. Thanks again!
LonM

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randallinMo

01-22-2013 09:24:23




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
I have used a simple metal barrel weighted down with concrete blocks and burned wood inside the barrel. After the fire is going good, put the lid back on leaving a small crack. It holds the fire really good and keeps the water warm. Simple to do.....need to add wood about once a day. 'Couldn't say how corn cobs would work....we use them for "toilet necessities" down here in Missouri.



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Lazy WP

01-22-2013 06:38:12




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
My tire tank is only a 6ft one. I have my hydrant just trickling into it, but still have to break ice every morning. I have a sheet of 2 inch Styrofoam over most of it, or did until the horses started breaking it apart. I also have a propane heater going, but obviously it isn't working this year. My biggest problem, is I only have 7 horses drinking out of it. I need more critters and that would help keep it open.

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SD Pete

01-22-2013 06:22:02




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
Used one of those all the time. I burned wood in it. Also a good way to get rid of excess waist oil.



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Greg K

01-22-2013 05:06:16




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
Don't know about the corn cob ones, but I've got one that burns diesel/kerosene and sits in the tank.



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sideconsole4020guy

01-22-2013 03:49:41




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
There is still a company making wood and corn cob tank heaters in Menno SD. The name escapes me right now but they worked great we still have one so later today I will go and see what the name is on the lid.

Zach



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George Marsh

01-22-2013 03:41:14




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
Our vet ran the exhaust on his truck through a water tank to have hot water to wash up with.

My carpet cleaning guy has made a boiler like device that runs the exhaust of his 4 cylinder diesel engine that runs the vacuum system. Hot water to clean carpet with.

Perhaps you have some engine you could use the exhaust from, like a gas generator or something.

I use a simple bubbler from wal-mart.

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old timer in ohio

01-21-2013 22:30:32




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
My son has a kids 15 ft. swimming pool, that he keeps hie "gold fish" in. He has a cheap air pump that keeps a hole, about 3-4 ft. ice free all year long, no matter how cold it gets.
Bob
God Bless



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john in nebraska

01-21-2013 20:49:00




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
I visited an old farm that had a unique water heater. First, the concrete the tank sits on, needs a slot across the longest part, about eight by eight inches. In this slot was a board, with 3 old oil burning road flares. On the end of the board was a plate to block the end to keep the hogs out. On the other end of the slot was a stove pipe in the fence. No ice in the tank at all, and at ten degrees the water was almost warm. He refilled the burners every day, used oil mixed with kerosene. Had 3 tanks set up that way. I thought it was darn unique.

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led

01-21-2013 20:11:16




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
I think they were called Cowboy heaters. They would burn cobs, coal, ect.
Led



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Erik Ks farmer

01-21-2013 20:08:43




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
get a 12 volt bubbler for a live well, hook it to a battery and secure the plastic air line to the base of the tank. The bubbles will create movement on the surface and keep it from freezing. 41 bucks
POKE HERE
http://www.westmarine.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?productId=37914&catalogId=10001&langId=-1&storeId=11151&storeNum=50842&subdeptNum=50912&classNum=50913#.UP4QrCf7LdM

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fixerupper

01-21-2013 20:05:38




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
I still have our cob burner sitting in the machine shed. You're welcome to it. I'm 30 miles south of Spencer, Ia. It should be OK unless the bottom got thin from sitting in the dirt but I think it's sitting on runners. How far up in MN are you? Jim



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LonM

01-22-2013 11:49:57




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to fixerupper, 01-21-2013 20:05:38  
Jim-
I am near Browns Valley, which is on the SD/MN border where the "bump" of MN dents into dakota. I am kind of limited for space with my tank- there are two bridge planks on edge, each mounted to railroad track vertically with about 8 inches between them for space for a heater. We water out of both sides of the tank and the bridge plank and RR track serves as a fence. I would be interested in your heater if it would fit in that 8-3/8" X 48" gap, otherwise I will need to make a custom fit heater. Mostly what I would like to know is how to set it up so the draft is correct so it will burn efficiently- any pics or advice are welcome. Thanks for any help, my e-mail is medberyfarm@hotmail.com LonM

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Wheat Farmer

01-21-2013 19:42:44




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 Re: Corn cob burning cattle water tank heater in reply to LonM, 01-21-2013 19:34:23  
Have you tried to put a basket ball or two in it. If you have enough wind to keep it moving it will work. I have also tied small straps that hand down in the water. Only works if you have a breeze blowing. I have not seem one for years, but someone made a unit that hooked to a propane bottle and it sent bubbles up from the bottom.



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