Jul 8, 2018
This is a good way to use old newspaper for heating and easy as pie to use. I make mine in the bathtub with a bucket of water to dip the newspaper in. No need to soak it for hours or days, just dip it in the water and hold it there until until soaked through. Fold and place in machine until full. The two handles are made in different sizes so one can fit through the other and you can press down to condense the newspaper. I like to flip it over so it stands on the (crossed) handles to let gravity condense the newspaper for a few minutes and let more of the water run out. I set the condensed newspaper on a cooling rack so it can dry faster. Tips #1 do not use with shredded paper. It condenses the paper so much that oxygen cannot get in to let it burn well. Tip #2 There are two trays. One goes on top of the other to press down on the paper. REMOVE YOUR FINGERS BEFORE PRESSING so you don't get hurt. This may be a common sense thing to many of us but common sense no longer seems to be common. ): Tip #3 Be sure the pressed paper is completely dry before you try to light it as wet paper does not burn. I hope this helps those who don't understand how to use this without hurting themselves.
Jul 9, 2014
I purchased 2 of these after reading the reviews and looking it up online. They came shipped in their own box and when opened they seemed to be heavy duty construction. When I put them to use I was really disappointed. I used both machines for a total of 12 bricks. The bricks and idea are great. But the fact that I paid over 60$ for 12 bricks is an outrage. One of the machines had 2 rivets missing and only noticed when I tried to use it and the machine split in 2. The other machine was intact but due to the short rods used to compress the paper they were quickly bent with very little effort. They were not installed properly. 1/2 on one side and 1 1/2 on the other. So very poor craftsmanship. I will try to buy better materials to strengthen the machines. But I don't know if they will last much longer the way they were built. With the poor quality of the two products I've purchased here I have no faith in this company and all the products that I wanted and my wife wanted are no longer on our list from this site. If the company put as much effort into their product as they do in their catalogue they would be drowning in money.
May 8, 2013
I've owned this for 2 years, and have made over 200 bricks, which I used last winter in the pacific nw, with no problems. If you had problems with paper going out of the bottom, brace the bottom with a simple clamp, and don't overfill. I take whole newspaper, put into a large plastic container, add hot water, a little bleach, shred with my hands, and place into form, press out the water, and let dry in the sun. Whole process takes about 2 hours, although drying takes a few days.
Apr 24, 2013
Nice concept, but had the same issue another rater had. One of the press handles is wider than the other and it slides off the end of the cross bar on the press plate very easily. If you are aware of this it can be avoided, but on my first use of the product it happened, and I cut my fingers pretty good.
Jan 12, 2013
I dunno about the low rating guys and how they are breaking this tool. You don't have to overload the tool with wet newspaper either. I think one whole news paper should be sufficient enough. Also how is it dangerous? You must be a complete idiot to injure yourself. I'd hate to see you work with a hammer or a hacksaw. Also, why do you need to soak it for several days to a week? I just grab 3 whole sheets at a time, run it in warm to mildly hot water and crumble it and put it in the tool. Fill it to the top and compress it to squeeze out all the water. Takes like a day or two to dry in a warm room.
Oct 11, 2012
Not only poorly built but positively dangerous to use, one of the handles can, and does, slide off the cross bars of the press plate; if you're lucky you only nip your finger rather than lose it. The bottom plate and sides flex alarmingly. I presume from the low quality its made in China, but in that case why is it so expensive? Unfortunately the revues don't allow a zero rating so my revue rating is higher than it deserves.
Oct 5, 2012
Extremely poor quality. Made two bricks and the third one blew out the bottom. The sides bend and bow out when you press down. It's sheet metal riveted together. After some welding it does make a pretty good brick but at this price I expected it to be built a LOT better.
May 22, 2012
I have used the brick maker several times already to make newspaper bricks. I found the instructions that were sent with the product to be very helpful in using the brick maker. I have apparently applied too much force once, which I did not think possible. The perforated bottom plate popped through the bottom guards on the black brick frame while I was making a brick. It took a little doing to remove the plate. I had to use a hammer! I understand that the perforated plate needs to be flexible in order to remove the brick from the mold. You might include in the instructions not to be too aggressive when pressing the water out of the wet paper pulp. I had it spraying from the perforations when this happened! I have found that if I am a little more patient, and drain the water a little better before adding the pulp to the brick maker, that I am able to form the brick without this problem recurring. Also, I have used the technique of soaking the chopped/shredded paper for 1-2 days, then (in batches) processing it in my blender with lots of water. This makes a nice pulp, which is easily drained in a colander. I collect the water from the colander to reuse for the next batch. I have been able to make about 6 bricks at a time from the amount of shredded paper that fills an average size mop bucket. The paper bricks themselves have been odorless, but when I tried to add dried leaves and grasses that I chopped up, the odor was quite foul. I would not recommend that. I am interested to see how these bricks will work this winter.
Jan 21, 2012
Does make the bricks as described. Is messy as described. Brickmaker does a good job.
Dec 4, 2011
Really like the product however, living in Florida this is not something we do every day, so was a little disappointed when the instructions didn't come with it.Especially since the packing slip stated with instruction. After a phone call all we received was sheet from the web site.
Apr 19, 2011
Our intention was to use this to recycle our local paper into something useable. The handles need some sort of padding, as they are very uncomfortable when applying pressure. The narrow sides need drain holes - as one compresses the sodden mass inside, some of the water percolates up and then has nowhere to go. The pressure basket (the piece with the two steel rods that applies pressure to the wet paper) needs to be beefier - we made 9 bricks the first evening we had this item and the basket is bent. Great idea and looks good, but I question whether or not it will stand up for another 9 bricks.
Feb 20, 2011
Just loaned out my brick maker ( John and Judy in Fossil, Oregon). With luck they hope to get a community brick project going--lots of sawdust and paper available.Lessons Learned from making bricks:* Donﾒt leave the pulp mixture soaking too longﾖa nasty smelling odor was evident when I left it soaking about 10 days. Did not go awayﾖeven after the bricks were made and dried. I'd suggest 1-3 days only to soak the mixture.*Warm or hot water and a SMALL amount of bleach is the best way to break down the paperﾖshredded/crosscut office paper and junk mail is what I use*Best mixture I tried was a 50/50 (by weight) mixture of office paper and sawdust*Still need to find the best wood (sawdust) to make a better smelling brickﾖI suspect Juniper or Cedar might be the bestﾖbut I donﾒt have any to test*After sun drying for a day or two, bricks can be placed on a wire shelf. A fan at one end of the shelf will greatly speed the drying time needed. If you live in the Mojave Desert you can dry these fast in the summer!
Sep 25, 2010
Well made, but takes a bit of time to learn to get it. my first dozen bricks simply fell apart when dry, you really need to pack it in there.