Discussion in 'Firewood, Heating and Wood Burning Equipment' started by mn woodcutter, Oct 21, 2014.
Here is my 1982 model Heat Mate II. It's old but it likes to throw heat.
that's all that matters brutha'
Cawley Lemay stove that I bought in 1977 and have used every year since to heat my house.
Image from a couple of years ago about this time. I was finally getting 'off the road' and starting a new job. Best move of my life - besides marrying my wife.
Burning a little coal this year...
12 hour fresh load.
we have a soapstone stove in our living room, model Heritage I believe, 14 years of burning so far. The kids were toddlers when we installed this unit and the wife said no burning unless there's a barrier so keep the kids safe, so I bought some railing and made a barrier, first pic is how we burned for the first couple years, railing on the left was made to slide so we could have access to the side loading door. Also found some pics of the final hearth and mantle build so thought I'd throw them in as well. Enjoy. There's an interesting story about the cherry mantle I'll post once the pics are uploaded.
temporary install.....wanted to get it fired up!
planing the cherry mantle
making progress with the river rock, this part was contracted out to a friend
almost done with the rock
tile installed; fitting cherry trim pieces
tile and trim cuts for rock contour
ok.......now for the mantle story: was in the U.P. for a friend's wedding back in July '99; there was a heck of a storm that weekend that went across MN, WI and MI, power was out during the wedding and the whole bit. Lots of trees down. That Sunday my wife-to-be and I are driving back to our place and on the way out of town I swung down a gravel road and she says "where ya goin'?" I said we should check out deer camp to see if there's any damage; didn't get 1/4 mile had to go back to town grab my dad's saw and cut our way to camp; made it in and luckily no buildings were damaged, but checking out the woods there were a lot of trees down....got towards the end of the property and there's a spot with some nice cherry trees blown over. I knew the minute my dad saw them he'd have the husky fired up faster than you can say firewood. Sooo.....since we already had the saw, I limbed up as many logs that the 1/2 ton pickup could carry, no cable or chains handy but did have the deer dragging rope under the seat so, with the fiance driving and skidding and me hitching and unhitching, we had a truck full of logs pulled out and loaded in short order. Brought them back with us and found a guy who would mill them for us.....I pointed to the nicest one on the truck, a 10 footer, and asked him to cut that one 4 inches thick and maximum width. We didn't even have a house yet, but knew someday that would become a mantle in our living room. Now we sit there during the winters with a nice fire and reminisce about our one day being loggers with a piece of rope, Husky 55, and a GMC K1500.
Cool story and it came out beautiful!
I need to freehand me a mantle sometime.....
NICE! Interesting use for the old sewing machine too, kind of an old school meets high tech...
Just starting it up.
Vermont casting insert we run on occasion for mostly mood. Owb does a good job, but if push came to shove the insert would keep us warm if the power went out
Stove is a Dutch west by Vermont casting. Cast iron. Takes 20" splits from the side loading door. Has a catalytic reburner is it but I don't use it anymore. Took my insulated stove pipe out and switched to single wall to put a flu damper in. Great stove so far. 4th year burning 5-7 cords a season.
Chimney is original mason with a SS flex liner inside, insulated between.
House is about 2000 sq ft build on 1890s open stairway to 2nd story. Avg inside temps 75-85
77 currently outside temp 17 degrees 16mph SW wind
New record burn for me. 8.5 hours and still going. Was a load of maple and birch rounds. Temps in the teens overnight but very windy. Woke up to 72 degrees.
This picture will explain why I quit using the reburn or secondary burn option on my stove. As you can see in the picture where the flame is exiting at the top plate. The original draft door closes over that, which forces the smoke and heat down through the fire to the catalytic setup on the bottom rear of the burn box.
The top plate you see in the picture with the exit hole in it is warped considerably so when I close the damper for the reburn it is still 90% open. It doesnt seal, so no reburn.
If you look close the left corner that's a crack in the cast iron. The opposite end also has the same crack. That's a cast iron plate also. So how that happened I still have no idea.
The downside also is no flu control, only intake air control. I burned all last year like that and lost a considerable amount of efficient burning that way. Also with any amount of wind it had the fire take off on my with no way to shut the draft down. No good.
To counteract replacing that 179$ plate and having to tear my stove down I went to single wall stove pipe with a cheap plate damper on it. Works just like a stove with no reburn and throws a lot more heat. Solid 16mph SW wind today and no noticeable change in the fire. Solid 450 degrees and holding.
Well I pulled a 10 hour burn with my overnight load of birch and maple rounds. By far best ever.
Here's my other burn times over the last two winters measured with a full load of wood
Balsam: 45 minutes (yes that bad lol)
Aspen splits: 1.5-3 hours
Aspen rounds: 4 hours
Birch splits (small): 4 hours
Birch splits (large): 6-8 hours
Norway pine splits (very large): 7.5 hours
Curious to see how much better the oak is than the maple/birch mix.
During the burns, though, do you get the same heat?
My longest burn time ever was friday evening until sunday afternoon once. Went on a short weekend trip. Was using an ashley oval, sheet metal top and front loader, very similar to the zogger smogger I have now. I scrounged a single chunk of..don't remember..that barely fit in. Dropped it in, closed it down, sunday afternoon still had enough coals to get it going again easy.
Well with water heat basically heat output is uniform until there's not enough coals left to keep the boiler temp at 180 degrees. Once this happens the air vent automatically opens up and whatever is left burns down pretty quickly.
I judge a burn by how long it can maintain water temp before needing more wood.
Good night. Fresh load of maple, a little bit snowy.
That's packed right in!
10 hours later it's 71 in the house (thermostat set at 68). It warmed up to 21 degrees overnight.
I'm still amazed how much burn times vary depending on wood.
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