Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Sun Oven

Living in the bush is not easy in the way of cooking. Our electricity is unreliable at times, with different voltages and power cuts, which made our electric stove not work properly. After many discussions we got rid of it. We then switched to bottled gas that we store in tall cylinders. These are transported up from Lusaka 500 miles away each time we run out. But at times our transport guy is also unreliable and charges an arm and a leg. We have tried charcoal which all the villagers use, but it is very messy and difficult for my wife to cook with, especially if she has to cook with several of them at a time. So we did the research on solar ovens and found the best one for us. It is the Sun Oven! We bought three and had them shipped to a team of volunteers coming from Texas to Zambia. They arrived intact with no problems.

  This is my daughter, Jasmine who will open the box and set the oven up. As you can see, it is a very strong sturdy box good enough to ship.

The oven is padded with Styrofoam. The metal you see is the mirrors which are on hinges, so don't try to pull them out. The whole thing must come out at once with the help of an assistant.

Here you can see the whole thing now out and the Styrofoam discarded.

  When you unsnap the latch, open the mirrors to reveal the inside of the oven. As you can see, there are other things inside which we have additionally purchased. We bought two pots and two bread pans. They were wrapped and packed nicely inside. 

What is inside is a DVD presentation that explains some details about the oven. Note: I knew there were more things on the DVD, so when I explored it, I found some reading material that was a help. Also there was a manual and registration card. You now can see the pots and bread pans.

Now the unpleasant thing is to peel away a blue plastic covering on the mirrors. This came off in a million pieces. 

Once all that blue plastic has been peeled off, you now have a beautiful looking oven.

This is the end result as it looks from the side. We cleaned the inside and left it in the sun for several hours to burn off any residue from the manufacturing. We have been cooking with our three Sun Ovens everyday and kicking ourselves that we didn't get more. We need two to three more for our orphanage. So far, it has reduced our energy bill massively and we are completely satisfied with our purchase. For individuals it costs $300 each. But for charities I paid  $180 not including shipping. Also any pots etc. are extra. This blog was done for free no money was given.