My New Homemade Solar Oven Modeled After The Kyoto Box.

April 13, 2009 20 Comments

So, on Friday you might remember I mentioned the Kyoto Box, which just won a $75,000 prize ideas to fight global warming. Well, it looked simple enough to build, which was the point, so I built one myself in a few hours this weekend. While I picked up an old window from a friend to try to use the glass, it was just too big – so I headed to the Habitat ReStore to pick up some used plexiglass. Cost? $1.50. A few other materials I needed included:

- 2 cardboard boxes, 1 bigger than the other. The smaller one is the cooker, and the outside one acts as insulation.
- Utility knife to cut the boxes down a little bit
- Black spray paint
- Aluminum Foil
- Leftover packing materials of any kind for insulation
- Glue
- Duct tape

That’s it. Since I already had everything except the plexiglass, the entire project only cost $1.50. But did it work? I will tell you after I show you a few pictures of the project:











So, did it work? Well, after a little while in the very partly cloudy 5pm sun, the temperature inside the box reached about 175 degrees.


I would say that is a success, considering the fact that it was only 52 degrees and very cloudy. And now it’s been snowing for days, so no more testing. Next time it’s very sunny I will attempt to do some cooking, and I will report back. I highly recommend you give this project a try, as it’s kind of fun to see something you build work so well!

Filed in: solar • Tags: , ,

About the Author:

After a varied past of being a test driver for automotive television programs, a Hollywood studio lackey, and an online media sales director, David is now the publisher and editor of The Good Human. In his spare time he rides motorcycles, drinks good beer, and builds stuff in the garage. You can follow him on Twitter at @thegoodhuman or G+ at Google
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Comments (20)

  1. David says:

    I will certainly put that post together too, Nathan!

  2. Awesome! I look forward to a big batch of brownies getting baked and posted on the internet! Such an excellent way to use the most potent and natural resource we have available to meet the demands of our necessities. More folks should do the same.

  3. cocoanib says:

    Wowza! This would be a fun, educational project to do with kids.

  4. Andrew says:

    Try layered newspaper. Made a cooler with layered newspaper that worked pretty well. They use celulose insulation in houses, good enough for that good enough for me.

  5. david says:

    We shall see!

  6. That looks great! I’ve been wanting to make a solar cooker for a while. Just sounds like a great way to keep from heating the house in summer while saving energy.

  7. Tara Burner says:

    back when my son was in like 4th grade they made one similar out of pizza box because the angle of the lid could be adjusted, etc.
    They ‘cooked’ different foods in there and it worked even back then which was like 9 yrs ago and kids were all excited lol

  8. Tara Burner says:

    back when my son was in like 4th grade they made one similar out of pizza box because the angle of the lid could be adjusted, etc.
    They ‘cooked’ different foods in there and it worked even back then which was like 9 yrs ago and kids were all excited lol

  9. Jon Bohmer says:

    Good job! This is the first DIY Kyoto Box I have seen since we received the FT prize three days ago. There are so many people contacting us for instructions – so I just send them the link to this page!

    Sincerely,

    J:-)N

  10. David says:

    Congrats on the prize, Jon, and thanks!

  11. solar oven lover says:

    These are great devices and can make a massive difference to the quality of peoples lives in remote regions of the world where there is no access to electricity.

  12. Connor says:

    entering this in a contest today ( how much heat can be generated)… hope i win

  13. Emec says:

    I have also been reading about the Kyoto Box- it is amazing in so many ways. I want to build one myself and found your blog with simple instructions. Cool blog. Please post again with results from your cooking, etc. I’ll be checking back in.

  14. Joy says:

    I am confused about the 2nd to last picture, what is that on top of the plexi glass? Other than that it looks really good, I plan on making thip for a project at my school.
    Thanks

  15. Joy says:

    Oh okay thank you :)

  16. Joy says:

    Sorry I have one more question, does it matter how the reflectors(flaps on the box) are positioned

  17. Marshall says:

    Great Idea, wouldn’t the box burn tho? especially at 175 degrees

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