A loaf of bread. The oven shows that Iím not a craftsman, but it works. On a
cloudless day, winter or summer, it will reach up to 400 degrees, empty, and so long as the sun is not obscured too
it will cook a pot of beans, even if it does take all day. I havenít tried baking bread when itís intermittently
I donít want to risk not getting the crust or the rise I want. The oven is designed so that when directly facing the
all of the sunlight striking the reflectors goes into the insulated interior. A glass collector plate at the opening of the
oven space traps the heat. The glass should be tempered to prevent cracking due to differential expansion between
the interior and exterior surfaces as the oven heats up. Temperature is adjusted by pointing the oven more or less directly
at the sun. As the sun moves across the sky, the oven must turned horizontally, and also tilted to maintain optimum reflector
orientation. A nail perpendicular to a block of wood resting on the collector plate serves as an orientation indicator. To
make horizontal movement easy, I made a lazy susan to set it on. A wedge, not visible, tilts the oven toward the sun.
One should always wear dark sunglasses when working around the oven. I use sunglasses with an extra polarized
clip-on as well. Welding glasses would probably be best.
The oven design comes from Cooking with the Sun — How to Build and Use Solar Cookers, by Beth and Dan
Halacy. (Morning Sun Press, 1992.) To order Cooking with the Sun, go to the Morning Sun Press
website at Morning Sun Press website. The
Products page has ordering information