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Thought for the moment.....

Monday, January 18, 2010

Paper Brick Making

For the past month or so, I've been making oven bricks out of recycled newspaper.  They say, made properly, these bricks will burn for 4-6 hours.  My husband loves that they make it easier to rev up the fire in the morning.
This is my bucket of newpaper that is getting pulpy which is good for making the brick stick together.  To get here, I shred the paper once a week (one bag full of paper will make about 15 bricks).  After its shredded I put it in my bucket in hot water with about a cup of bleach (to prevent molding).  During the week I will visit the bucket when I'm in the basement and stir it around.  This time i used an electric beater from my pottery studio (do not use your kitchen beater!) and mixed it up on top a few times during the week.  This helped out a lot when it came to making the bricks.

After a week, when its nice and gooey, I take the pulp and put in the machine using my fingers to blend it by pushing down from the top (I wear gloves under my plastic gloves because by now it is wicked cold water).  Once I have it filled, I put on the top and squeeze all the water out while compacting the paper.
Once that is done, you take it apart and pop out your paper brick!  I have a grate by my fire in the basement that I put them on to dry.  They dry there in about 2 wks, maybe longer depending on the weather.
There you have it!  Paper bricks - you can recycle and warm your home!

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