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Thread: Wood burner
10-10-2009, 09:25 PM #1
I'm here at camp, known to us as the farm, enjoying the new high speed internet, beer, and our wood burner.
I never liked the wood burner when Dad was alive. Too much drinking, not enough prudence, I was afraid he was gonna burn down my inheritance. Now that I pay the propane bill, I love the wood burner!
I don't know much about burning wood. I have a pile of aged wood, some tarped and dry, some rained on. Its poplar, oak, and cherry in my pile. My stove is a small Vogelzang with a Air intake adjustment at the door, an a damper in the 6" exhaust. I added a thermometer in the exhaust, 3 feet above the stove. The scale shows 400º-900º as normal.
My routine is to start with some paper and kindling and one log, with the damper and air wide open. When it gets going I close the damper, and adjust the air to keep the temp in the middle, which is hard. My temp drops when I add a new log.
How should I be running this thing? Any tips to get it burning from a cold start (sometimes very cold, lowest temperature my indoor thermometer read last winter was 14º!) What is your setup?
I must say I feel good now. Its our anniversary and my wife's birthday. I got up at 5:30, sat in a tree until 9:00. Then I pounded in some corner posts, and ran one strand around our new pasture, about 4 acres, I think. Then I sat in a tree again until dark. Unfortunately, no deer interrupted my tree sitting. Then we had a baked chicken, that I grew and butchered. Now I'm enjoying my three kids, a warm fire, and I finished my beer. I never have beer at home. I bought this case in May or June, still have a few left. Its my treat up here.
The pasture is my wife's birthday present. That sounds bad, its for her horses, not her.Jason
10-11-2009, 04:53 AM #2Contractor locator map
How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?
10-11-2009, 06:59 AM #3
Back in 1998 I rented a farm house with a friend of mine in NE Colorado. We got a heck of a deal for renting a farm house for $200 a month. Beacuse their was no gas or LP on the property. I was farming full time back then and doing HVAC and electrial service as a side job. I hated that stove when we got home from work it was 32º. The night setback also worked very well on the stove as it would be 40º in the house when I woke up. Needless to say I only spent one winter on that farm and I know from experience that living in the "old" days was hard work and you were uncomfortable a lot of the time but it wasn't so bad. There's nothing like sipping whiskey next to a wood stove and telling stories with your friends on a cold snowy night. But I really do appreciate the modern furnace, because I know what it's like to live without one.
10-11-2009, 08:12 AM #4
I can relate to those cold mornings. Before I put in the propane furnace, we only had a gravity coal furnace. Those cold mornings were tough!Jason
10-11-2009, 09:12 AM #5Regular Guest
- Join Date
- Feb 2008
I run my woodstove a fair amount during the cold part of the winter. It's a Vermont Castings Defiant. Always start with raking up the leftover coals into a pile, add a good 6" layer of twigs then small splits and then light it up with the damper and air wide open. Once it gets going a bit then close down the air a bit to keep it from running away. Then burn quarter splits for an hour or two and move up to the larger pieces after it settles in. Like to keep the smoke pipe in the 400-800F range. Make sure you run it hot for long enough to fully heat up the stove and build up the bed of coals to a good depth. The coal bed will make for smoother running and easier regulation and also a cleaner fire. Don't try to throttle it way down all the time, it will make a mess of your chimney. Always run it hot for a bit after adding wood so it doesn't cool down too much. Open damper in pipe before opening door on stove, then re-adjust.
10-11-2009, 12:05 PM #6
10-11-2009, 02:02 PM #7
What did you guys grow?
I'm looking to go the other way, HVAC to farming. Next summer we will be raising a few hundred broiler chickens, on pasture. I'm already marketing them to my customers at work. It will be a trial run of living at the farm.Jason
10-11-2009, 03:09 PM #8
10-11-2009, 07:10 PM #9
Wheet, corn, pinto and soy beans, sugar beet$, and cattle. There were three of us farm hands and we all covered 20,000 acers 90% irrigated spread out over a 70 mile radius.
10-13-2009, 10:56 PM #10
My wife used to live in the middle of nowhere, she had a coal stove that ate coal like you could not believe. I figured the high stack temperature had a lot to do with the insane draft. Since when I was courting her it became my job to feed this monster, I installed a draft diverted to slow things up a bit. This was the best move, cut the coal usage in half, this allowed me to enjoy a beer. That is until I got the great idea to replace the electric baseboard with fin tube and install and oil fired boiler complete with a basement tank. All by myself, and that was after driving from Philly to her house 64 miles away.
Just after I finished that install (it took near a year of weekends) I married her and sold the place and moved her back to civilization. The oil fired hydronic system sold the house, the guy said the system would allow him to catch up on his beer drinking.