Go Back   Winnipesaukee Forum > Winnipesaukee Forums > Home, Cottage or Land Maintenance
Home Forums Gallery Blogs YouTube Channel Classifieds Calendar Register FAQDonate Members List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-17-2022, 06:38 PM   #101
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
If it's not cut and split, it's not seasoned. And if it's been tight against the ground for three years, it may be rotting.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
Sigh . . . alright, Sparky, if you say so!
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2022, 06:52 PM   #102
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
Sigh . . . alright, Sparky, if you say so!
Sorry that wasn't what you wanted to hear. What I meant to write was, "that wood is perfectly seasoned and, like, totally ready to burn. I wouldn't even bother splitting it—just leave the stove door open and slowly feed the whole length as it burns."

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2022, 07:35 PM   #103
upthesaukee
Senior Member
 
upthesaukee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Alton Bay
Posts: 5,480
Blog Entries: 2
Thanks: 2,290
Thanked 1,861 Times in 1,040 Posts
Default But then again

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
Sigh . . . alright, Sparky, if you say so!
But then again... A columnist John Harrigan does an article in about 6 or 8 newspapers in NH.

some of his columns have dealt with burning wood. Now he does have an outdoor furnace as opposed to a woodstove. However, he has 3 woodpiles, the location of which varies from year to year. The 3 piles are this year's wood, next year's wood, and two years hence wood.

This year's wood gets cut and split as necessary, then stacked in the woodshed next to the outside wood furnace.

What happens next year is that what was next year's wood becomes the current year, two year becomes next year, , and a new two year stack is started.

I agree with Think that you have to be careful with wood that is languishing on the ground for a couple of years, because it will end up rotting in the trunk.

I had a large poplar come down and about 2 years, maybe three, I was going to cut and split it for early and/ or late season burns to take the chill out of the house where you don't need an all day roaring fire to stay warm. I fired a up the chainsaw and it was like cutting a sponge. Bummed.

Check some of the logs. If there is a little rot by the bark, but the majority of the log is solid, go for it. Think 80-85% of the log solid.

I try not to waste wood. Don't forget 2-3 inch, even 4 inch rounds will burn well in an established fire. These would be smaller diameter trees and larger branches of bigger trees.

Good luck.

Dave
__________________
I Live Here... I am always UPTHESAUKEE !!!!
upthesaukee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2022, 10:25 PM   #104
John Mercier
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 1,945
Thanks: 1
Thanked 366 Times in 306 Posts
Default

Because farmers used to cut a firewood tree before the leaves fell. They would leave the tree intact and allow the leaves to ''pull'' the moisture from the trunk and branches as it naturally would... thus lowering the internal moisture content.
John Mercier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2022, 10:49 PM   #105
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,910
Thanks: 59
Thanked 662 Times in 429 Posts
Default

When I built my VT log home I cut down the trees necessary to make room for the driveway, house build area and leech field.

I cut the timber to 8' lengths and stacked them between trees around the lot.

A year later, after the house was closed in, I decided to cut some firewood to stove length.

I was disappointed to find out that much of the wood was already rotting and I had to sort through the stacks to find good firewood.

After two years it was a useless mission.

Had I taken the time to cut, split and properly cover the wood I would have had several years worth.

Getting the house closed in before fall was the priority so that didn't happen.
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old 04-18-2022, 05:55 PM   #106
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
If it's not cut and split, it's not seasoned. And if it's been tight against the ground for three years, it may be rotting.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
Let me add that those downed lengths might be insect infested, as well.

I was reminded of this while finishing my processing for '23-'24 today and I found ant and termite nests in wood that had been on the ground for only 9 months.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2022, 06:04 PM   #107
John Mercier
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 1,945
Thanks: 1
Thanked 366 Times in 306 Posts
Default

Still might have viable wood.
John Mercier is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to John Mercier For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (04-18-2022)
Old 04-18-2022, 06:14 PM   #108
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
Sorry that wasn't what you wanted to hear. What I meant to write was, "that wood is perfectly seasoned and, like, totally ready to burn. I wouldn't even bother splitting it—just leave the stove door open and slowly feed the whole length as it burns."
Well, Thinkxingu, once again you've educated me and I decided to take your advice. I made this video to show my new method for burning huge logs without splitting them. Excuse the state of my living room; I didn't have time to vacuum before making the video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6OXLyrRhq24

SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to SailinAway For This Useful Post:
DEJ (04-19-2022)
Old 04-18-2022, 06:18 PM   #109
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Mercier View Post
Still might have viable wood.
Absolutely. I had a very large maple felled 3 years ago because it was rotten. The pile sat there for 3 years in a wet area, cut to 14" but not split. I tried to find someone to take it away because I figured it was useless. Then when oil hit $5 a gallon, out of curiosity I decided to split some of the pieces. I found plenty of burnable wood.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to SailinAway For This Useful Post:
upthesaukee (04-18-2022)
Old 04-18-2022, 06:26 PM   #110
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
Let me add that those downed lengths might be insect infested, as well. I was reminded of this while finishing my processing for '23-'24 today and I found ant and termite nests in wood that had been on the ground for only 9 months.
True. I leave split wood outside and keep only a small quantity in the garage, briefly, before burning it. When I bought my house it had two cords of wood very neatly stacked in the garage under the house. Thought I was lucky. Imagine my surprise when I moved in a few weeks later and heard all kinds of munching and crunching down there. Had to haul two cords out of the garage and up a hill to restack it away from the house.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to SailinAway For This Useful Post:
upthesaukee (04-18-2022)
Old 04-19-2022, 05:45 AM   #111
fatlazyless
Senior Member
 
fatlazyless's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 8,204
Blog Entries: 1
Thanks: 272
Thanked 904 Times in 655 Posts
Default

Another FREE source for excellent wood is those driveway and parking lot 42"x1"x!" stakes, sometimes painted orange at one end, that tell the snow plow driver where the paved asphalt is, under the snow.

On April 1 just ask the building management if you can have all their old winter stakes if you walk around and remove them ..... no joke.

Cut from el cheapo NH hardwood, they burn totally excellent, the greatest kindling ever in the world history of hearth heat fire. ....
fatlazyless is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2022, 12:55 PM   #112
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default Update on the Englander 13 NC woodstove

After reading a lot of reviews about my woodstove, I've concluded that a lot of other users find this stove quite difficult to manage, as Thinkxingu alluded. Some sample reviews that are similar to my experience:

"This item eats wood like a cast iron box stove. The damper does little to control the burn. I have to burn with the door ajar to keep it going. I lasts for only a couple of hours and requires constant supervision like a toddler."

"You have to feed it wood at least every 2 hours or it dies out. There is no lip so when you open the door to put more wood in the ashes and burning wood have fallen out."

"Firebox is small, have to continuously feed it wood, cant get a good burn longer than an hour with seasoned wood and heat output poor, has difficulty heating 850 sf."

"It is hard to start a fire and keep a fire going. It doesn't get very hot once a fire is going!"

"Needs refueling every 2 hours."

I have found some things that can help this underpowered stove. The first is a large amount of kindling to get a hot fire going quickly. The kindling needs to be pine. I've been resawing 18" logs in half for north-south loading. Then the longer logs can be stacked east-west with adequate air. Also, there's a tipping point where opening the door a crack will let heat escape, so it's better to close it at that point and contain the heat. I suspect that if I had 50% pine logs, that would also help.

Granted, results will also depend on the user's knowledge and skill (that applies to me as well), but I've concluded that the "normal" functioning of a woodstove described in this thread really doesn't apply to this particular stove. I will try to obtain some pine and see if that helps. I'll keep reading woodstove forums for tips and see if I can improve my technique.

Don't get me wrong---my house is warm at the moment. But I'm restarting the fire from scratch at least 3 times a day whenever I go out for errands, a hike, or to split wood. When I'm at home working I get up to tend the fire every 20 minutes. As I was writing that last sentence a log fell against the glass door---very delicate maneuver to open the door a crack and coax the log back up without it falling out of the stove.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2022, 01:08 PM   #113
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
After reading a lot of reviews about my woodstove, I've concluded that a lot of other users find this stove quite difficult to manage, as Thinkxingu alluded. Some sample reviews that are similar to my experience:

"This item eats wood like a cast iron box stove. The damper does little to control the burn. I have to burn with the door ajar to keep it going. I lasts for only a couple of hours and requires constant supervision like a toddler."

"You have to feed it wood at least every 2 hours or it dies out. There is no lip so when you open the door to put more wood in the ashes and burning wood have fallen out."

"Firebox is small, have to continuously feed it wood, cant get a good burn longer than an hour with seasoned wood and heat output poor, has difficulty heating 850 sf."

"It is hard to start a fire and keep a fire going. It doesn't get very hot once a fire is going!"

"Needs refueling every 2 hours."

I have found some things that can help this underpowered stove. The first is a large amount of kindling to get a hot fire going quickly. The kindling needs to be pine. I've been resawing 18" logs in half for north-south loading. Then the longer logs can be stacked east-west with adequate air. Also, there's a tipping point where opening the door a crack will let heat escape, so it's better to close it at that point and contain the heat. I suspect that if I had 50% pine logs, that would also help.

Granted, results will also depend on the user's knowledge and skill (that applies to me as well), but I've concluded that the "normal" functioning of a woodstove described in this thread really doesn't apply to this particular stove. I will try to obtain some pine and see if that helps. I'll keep reading woodstove forums for tips and see if I can improve my technique.

Don't get me wrong---my house is warm at the moment. But I'm restarting the fire from scratch at least 3 times a day whenever I go out for errands, a hike, or to split wood. When I'm at home working I get up to tend the fire every 20 minutes. As I was writing that last sentence a log fell against the glass door---very delicate maneuver to open the door a crack and coax the log back up without it falling out of the stove.
Either your wood isn't seasoned enough (probably this) or there's something wrong with your stove (less likely).

On a chilly day (helps with draft), I can load my 13 with splits and get it going with the door cracked in less than 10 minutes. After around 30 minutes, I can shut the air half way and get 3-4 hours of good heat. No way your door should be open for more than 10-15 minutes and you absolutely shouldn't be starting from scratch 3-4 times a day.


Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2022, 02:39 PM   #114
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
Either your wood isn't seasoned enough (probably this) or there's something wrong with your stove (less likely).

On a chilly day (helps with draft), I can load my 13 with splits and get it going with the door cracked in less than 10 minutes. After around 30 minutes, I can shut the air half way and get 3-4 hours of good heat. No way your door should be open for more than 10-15 minutes and you absolutely shouldn't be starting from scratch 3-4 times a day.
I've had this stove for years and it has always behaved like this regardless of the wood. When I posted last April I was burning 4-year-old wood. I had another stove prior to this one and had no difficulty with it even as a beginner. How about you post a video so I can see how you do it?
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2022, 03:20 PM   #115
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
I've had this stove for years and it has always behaved like this regardless of the wood. When I posted last April I was burning 4-year-old wood. I had another stove prior to this one and had no difficulty with it even as a beginner. How about you post a video so I can see how you do it?
You want a 4-hour video?

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2022, 04:00 PM   #116
Slickcraft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Welch Island and West Alton
Posts: 3,083
Thanks: 1,088
Thanked 1,869 Times in 858 Posts
Default

The Englander that we have on Welch is smaller but will hold a fire longer than yours. Once it is up to secondary burn temp, the air inlet can be closed most or all the way to get a lazy hot fire. The built in air control can really shut it down if closed all the way.

Wondering if there is a secondary path for combustion air to get into your stove. Does it have an ash drawer? If so, does that have a good gasket seal? Does the stove door have a tight gasket seal? With the stove off and cold, close the door on a dollar bill. You should just be able to pull it out. If it pulls out easy, see if the closure tightness is adjustable.

Alan
Slickcraft is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Slickcraft For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (11-20-2022)
Old 11-19-2022, 06:34 PM   #117
John Mercier
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 1,945
Thanks: 1
Thanked 366 Times in 306 Posts
Default

What is the flue made out of?
John Mercier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2022, 01:56 PM   #118
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
You want a 4-hour video?
Two things would be helpful to see: (1) Building and lighting the fire and refueling when the kindling has burned down, and (2) refueling after 4 hours. Not trying to be a pest. I honestly don't know how you achieve the results you report. I'd love to learn. Free me from stove slavery!
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2022, 02:00 PM   #119
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slickcraft View Post
The Englander that we have on Welch is smaller but will hold a fire longer than yours. Once it is up to secondary burn temp, the air inlet can be closed most or all the way to get a lazy hot fire. The built in air control can really shut it down if closed all the way.

Wondering if there is a secondary path for combustion air to get into your stove. Does it have an ash drawer? If so, does that have a good gasket seal? Does the stove door have a tight gasket seal? With the stove off and cold, close the door on a dollar bill. You should just be able to pull it out. If it pulls out easy, see if the closure tightness is adjustable.

Alan
You raise some good questions, thank you. Yes, there's an ash drawer, and I asked above why there are no ashes in it.

The door does NOT have a tight gasket seal. Some mice took a liking to the gasket. I thought this wasn't a problem because maybe the crack is letting helpful air into the stove. Am I wrong about that?
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2022, 02:03 PM   #120
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Mercier View Post
What is the flue made out of?
The chimney is made of bricks lined with . . . a liner.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2022, 03:00 PM   #121
John Mercier
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 1,945
Thanks: 1
Thanked 366 Times in 306 Posts
Default

The chimney needs to heat up to help the draft.
It has a lot of mass pulling heat from the exhaust gases.
John Mercier is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to John Mercier For This Useful Post:
ApS (11-20-2022)
Old 11-20-2022, 03:23 PM   #122
Slickcraft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Welch Island and West Alton
Posts: 3,083
Thanks: 1,088
Thanked 1,869 Times in 858 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
You raise some good questions, thank you. Yes, there's an ash drawer, and I asked above why there are no ashes in it.

The door does NOT have a tight gasket seal. Some mice took a liking to the gasket. I thought this wasn't a problem because maybe the crack is letting helpful air into the stove. Am I wrong about that?
It is a problem as you can't slow down the burn rate once the stove gets up to temp. Also the stove's designed air flow has some air directed to the secondary burn ports. Air flow from the door may hinder the efficiency of the secondary burn.

Alan
Slickcraft is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Slickcraft For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (11-20-2022)
Old 11-20-2022, 03:58 PM   #123
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
You raise some good questions, thank you. Yes, there's an ash drawer, and I asked above why there are no ashes in it.

The door does NOT have a tight gasket seal. Some mice took a liking to the gasket. I thought this wasn't a problem because maybe the crack is letting helpful air into the stove. Am I wrong about that?
Ummm...for real? We've been talking about how shutting the air down increases burn time...but that only works when you can actually shut the air down. Obviously, having a leaking front door will negate that. Replace that gasket ASAP.

In terms of the ash draw: there's an opening on the floor of the box that ash can be shoveled through and into the ash pan below the air control lever. Don't use it. The ash pans on these things are not sealed well, so you're better off cramming it with ash so you don't have an (another) air leak.


Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to thinkxingu For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (11-20-2022)
Old 11-20-2022, 04:13 PM   #124
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Got it, Thinkxingu. Thanks for the clarifications!
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2022, 06:36 PM   #125
ApS
Senior Member
 
ApS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Florida (Sebring & Keys), Wolfeboro
Posts: 5,510
Thanks: 1,794
Thanked 689 Times in 491 Posts
Question "First-Up" in the Morning...

Local hardware stores should have those fiberglass gaskets. My stove's original gaskets appeared like woven rope. You'll need some kind of securing substance, but the gaskets (alone) provided by Bradley's Hardware (Wolfeboro) fit tightly enough.

To get a longer burn, use large chunks of "unsuitable" rotting wood--or large unseasoned hemlock. Twelve-inch (by 18-inch) rounds will fit through the front door; however, ashes and embers can leak out so I use the side door--which will clear 7-inch rounds.

Rotting wood used to be called "punk", and would smolder indefinitely. Indigenous-people worldwide had names for those individuals responsible for "keeping the fire".

My woodstove is perhaps twice as big, and a "round" of unseasoned 7-inch hemlock takes all night to dry out and burn--with the air shut down, of course. Plus, it leaves hot coals to ignite the next day's seasoned birch--which quickly pre-heats the seasoned maple to follow.
ApS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2022, 06:48 AM   #126
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Sailin, a couple (extended) notes:

1. There are two goals when running your stove (other than straight heat, obviously): to run it hot enough to not create creosote buildup in the liner and to get the longest, most efficient burn times possible.

To do this, you want to get the stove as hot as possible as quickly as possible to create a strong draft and to get heat up the chimney to prevent creosote deposits.

To get the longest, most efficient burns, you need to create the right conditions for secondary burn. I've linked to one of the simplest and most complete explanations of that below (though it's a tad busy with ads). Essentially, you want to turn the air control down as much as possible to maintain the right heat and air flow for the gases to burn themselves rather than escape up the chimney. That's the Aurora-Borealis-looking stuff at the top of the photo I posted earlier in the thread.

You can't do either of these without good air control, so definitely get that gasket replaced.

https://fireplaceuniverse.com/second...rn-wood-stove/


2. I've attached some photos of my moisture gauge readings taken yesterday. All of the pieces tested were cut and split 4 years ago. 20% is the max to burn efficiently, and I prefer between 10-15%. Even though all of those pieces are 4-years-old, only two are really ready to burn (and they burned perfectly!).

Birch, pine, etc. definitely dry more quickly than oak, maple, etc., but the fact remains that age doesn't always mean dryness.







Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to thinkxingu For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (11-21-2022)
Old 11-27-2022, 07:33 PM   #127
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default Top-down fire

I tried a top-down fire today. The results were mixed. First, it can only be successful in a stove that's tall enough for one layer of large logs, one layer of medium, and, critically, a considerable amount of kindling on top. If the stove is not high enough---like mine---the small amount of kindling will burn through before getting the layer below it going sufficiently. I noticed the smoldering fire just in time to add more kindling and hit it with the bellows.

Also, because the kindling is on top, as it burns it tends to fall down in an uncontrolled way and spill out the front of the stove if the door is partially open. First time I've ever had burning wood actually exit the stove.

However, with the addition of more kindling, the fire did eventually burn down to the large logs and a bed of good coals was created faster than usual---about 35 minutes. The claim is that this kind of fire is simple: light it and forget it for the next couple of hours. I didn't find that to be true. I probably won't try this again, for safety's sake.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2022, 08:02 PM   #128
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Were I you, I'd be loading N/S to start and using longer E/W to replenish.

Regardless, until you address the gasket/air leaks and confirm dry wood, you're running in circles.

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2022, 05:28 PM   #129
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Here are three photos from my fire starting tonight. This load is oak/maple in the back, pine in the front. Both seasoned at least three years.

#1 shows the size starter I use and where I put it.

#2 shows the final splits I put in front of that starter immediately after I lit the starter. I put the splits close enough to the starter to light but with enough of a gap for smoke to rise.

#3 shows five minutes in. You can see the fire is spreading nicely by the glow.

I was ready to start shutting the air down (1/3 first, 2/3 second) in 30 minutes.







Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to thinkxingu For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (12-04-2022)
Old 12-04-2022, 06:59 PM   #130
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Thanks for the photos! Which stove is that?
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2022, 07:07 PM   #131
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
Thanks for the photos! Which stove is that?
That's my upstairs Hearthstone, but I build fires in the Englander the same way. The only difference is that I try my best to go N/S in the Englander because it's downstairs and doesn't have the same draft quality. On a really cold day, it matters much less.

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2022, 10:30 AM   #132
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
Were I you, I'd be loading N/S to start and using longer E/W to replenish.
I just measured the Englander 13. The maximum log length north to south is 10". I mentioned early on that short logs are useful, but most people don't have such short logs. Either they're not interested in cutting them that short or whoever they buy wood from isn't willing to cut them that short. Personally I find that short logs make a huge difference with this stove.

Over my objections, an "expert" built a fire in my woodstove the other day by packing it initially east to west with large logs and minimal kindling, closed the door after one minute, and closed the damper halfway about 5 minutes later "because this is how you get a long fire and save wood." I watched as smoke filled the house and the fire died an agonizing death over the next hour.

I have since carefully read the manufacturer's instructions for building a fire in the Englander 13. The instructions correspond exactly with my experience and lead to success. Nowhere do the instructions mention heavy initial loading or closing down the damper for a long overnight burn. Some quotes from the manual:

--"Adding large pieces at the early stages will only serve to smother the fire."

--"When shutting down the stove, fully open the air control. This will allow chimney temperatures to remain as high as possible for as long as possible. Remember, cold chimney temperatures create creosote."

--"Burn hot fires. For most appliances, a smoldering fire is not a safe or efficient fire." [per EPA]

--"DO NOT install a flue pipe damper or any other restrictive device in the exhaust venting system of this unit." [Also from the EPA in the Englander 13 manual. Reason not specified---assume it's to reduce smoke emissions?]

So I conclude that burning wood is a balancing act between (1) getting the heat you need, (2) for the period you need it for, (3) conserving wood, (4) fire safety, namely, preventing creosote from forming, and (5) protecting the environment. Some of those goals conflict. I think preventing creosote has to be the priority at all times.

With the Englander 13 the challenge is getting heat for the period you need it for. I don't believe it's possible to heat solely with this small stove in our climate. Oil is currently providing heat overnight in my house. A power outage when it's 20 below would required tending the stove frequently day and night.

That's my experience to date. I'm sure there are other valid perspectives and wood-burning strategies, so I'll continue learning about this.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2022, 11:14 AM   #133
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
I just measured the Englander 13. The maximum log length north to south is 10". I mentioned early on that short logs are useful, but most people don't have such short logs. Either they're not interested in cutting them that short or whoever they buy wood from isn't willing to cut them that short. Personally I find that short logs make a huge difference with this stove.

Over my objections, an "expert" built a fire in my woodstove the other day by packing it initially east to west with large logs and minimal kindling, closed the door after one minute, and closed the damper halfway about 5 minutes later "because this is how you get a long fire and save wood." I watched as smoke filled the house and the fire died an agonizing death over the next hour.

I have since carefully read the manufacturer's instructions for building a fire in the Englander 13. The instructions correspond exactly with my experience and lead to success. Nowhere do the instructions mention heavy initial loading or closing down the damper for a long overnight burn. Some quotes from the manual:

--"Adding large pieces at the early stages will only serve to smother the fire."

--"When shutting down the stove, fully open the air control. This will allow chimney temperatures to remain as high as possible for as long as possible. Remember, cold chimney temperatures create creosote."

--"Burn hot fires. For most appliances, a smoldering fire is not a safe or efficient fire." [per EPA]

--"DO NOT install a flue pipe damper or any other restrictive device in the exhaust venting system of this unit." [Also from the EPA in the Englander 13 manual. Reason not specified---assume it's to reduce smoke emissions?]

So I conclude that burning wood is a balancing act between (1) getting the heat you need, (2) for the period you need it for, (3) conserving wood, (4) fire safety, namely, preventing creosote from forming, and (5) protecting the environment. Some of those goals conflict. I think preventing creosote has to be the priority at all times.

With the Englander 13 the challenge is getting heat for the period you need it for. I don't believe it's possible to heat solely with this small stove in our climate. Oil is currently providing heat overnight in my house. A power outage when it's 20 below would required tending the stove frequently day and night.

That's my experience to date. I'm sure there are other valid perspectives and wood-burning strategies, so I'll continue learning about this.
Creosote is not at all a concern for anyone 1. Burning dry wood and/or 2. Having the chimney cleaned every year or two.

You will not burn enough wood in one, and probably two or three, years to build up a worrying amount of creosote. I go literally 3-4 years between cleanings and still end up with close to zero residue.

The reason creosote is a thing is twofold: inefficient fireplaces and moist wood, both of which should be/are a problem of the past.

If I have a chance in the next few days, I'll start a fire in my 13 and share some pics.

One last thing: 100% wood stove heat is absolutely challenging, but the 13 was never designed to be the central heating source of anything save the smallest of homes. It'll heat a room or small area fine, though, especially if well insulated. The 30? Now that thing's legit.

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2022, 05:10 PM   #134
Poor Richard
Senior Member
 
Poor Richard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: The humbling river
Posts: 271
Thanks: 37
Thanked 70 Times in 48 Posts
Default

What I do with a cold stove/ chimney is to get a decent flame started. It doesn't have to be a large flame but it does have to be something that can start pushing heat up the chimney. (For reference, a flame that is roughly and consistently at least 6" to 8" tall)

We have a ~30' vertical run of all-fuel chimney pipe to contend with before we can start placing logs inside the stove. This could be anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes before the initial kindling burn displaces enough cold air up the chimney to eliminate the down draft effect, depending on the ambient temp.

I have a damper 18" up the stove pipe and there is an air intake on each of the front doors of our 50+ year old Old Mill stove. Generally, nothing starts getting closed down until I see temps approaching 300 however I'll run the flue damper at around 50% open until the temps are up if I know the wood is dry enough, then close it down to nearly 20% open and let the stove simmer

I believe the mistake your fire-starting expert made was piling logs into the stove before getting a basic and reliable heat source going to displace the cold air in the chimney.
Poor Richard is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Poor Richard For This Useful Post:
ApS (12-06-2022), SailinAway (12-06-2022)
Old 12-06-2022, 05:20 PM   #135
WinnisquamZ
Senior Member
 
WinnisquamZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,560
Thanks: 167
Thanked 495 Times in 332 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Poor Richard View Post
What I do with a cold stove/ chimney is to get a decent flame started. It doesn't have to be a large flame but it does have to be something that can start pushing heat up the chimney. (For reference, a flame that is roughly and consistently at least 6" to 8" tall)

We have a ~30' vertical run of all-fuel chimney pipe to contend with before we can start placing logs inside the stove. This could be anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes before the initial kindling burn displaces enough cold air up the chimney to eliminate the down draft effect, depending on the ambient temp.

I have a damper 18" up the stove pipe and there is an air intake on each of the front doors of our 50+ year old Old Mill stove. Generally, nothing starts getting closed down until I see temps approaching 300 however I'll run the flue damper at around 50% open until the temps are up if I know the wood is dry enough, then close it down to nearly 20% open and let the stove simmer

I believe the mistake your fire-starting expert made was piling logs into the stove before getting a basic and reliable heat source going to displace the cold air in the chimney.
Fire starter sticks, fat wood, and a bit of paper will get you started. Question, is there a small grate on the stove floor? I add a few smaller pieces to the top of the grate and newspaper balls underneath. Light a piece of newspaper and hold it up at the flume for a few seconds it warm the draft. Drop it under the grate before you burn your hand! Start piling smaller pieces in a box shape and enjoy.


Sent from my iPhone using Winnipesaukee Forum mobile app
WinnisquamZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2022, 05:30 PM   #136
Poor Richard
Senior Member
 
Poor Richard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: The humbling river
Posts: 271
Thanks: 37
Thanked 70 Times in 48 Posts
Default

No grate. Everything happens on top of the fire bricks
Attached Images
 

Last edited by Poor Richard; 12-06-2022 at 05:50 PM. Reason: Add pic
Poor Richard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2022, 05:53 PM   #137
WinnisquamZ
Senior Member
 
WinnisquamZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,560
Thanks: 167
Thanked 495 Times in 332 Posts
Default Building a fire in a wood stove

Quote:
Originally Posted by Poor Richard View Post
No grate. Everything happens on top of the fire bricks
That is a cool looking stove. A small grate might help.


Sent from my iPhone using Winnipesaukee Forum mobile app
WinnisquamZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2022, 06:09 PM   #138
ApS
Senior Member
 
ApS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Florida (Sebring & Keys), Wolfeboro
Posts: 5,510
Thanks: 1,794
Thanked 689 Times in 491 Posts
Wink A Tip for Too-Long Logs...

As previously stated my Trinity III cast iron woodstove accepts 18-inch logs.

Every once in a while, I'll find one that won't allow me to close the side door. (Too long, or presenting a long "splinter").

I reposition it vertically so one end enters the pipe. That repositioning hasn't presented a problem, and is usually the first log to burn completely.
ApS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-2022, 03:36 PM   #139
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Here are some pics from my Englander 13 that I decided to get going tonight for my wife (it's our downstairs stove, where our bedroom is).

As you can see, I don't use anything for kindling except for two small pieces of pine board trim (to the sides of the top starter). The rest is well-seasoned pine (to the front) and maple/oak to the back.

I light the top starter (1/4 of a Lightning Nugget, pic 1) first to get the draft going and then, after a minute or two, start the second starter in the middle (another 1/4, pic 2).

After about 5 minutes with the door cracked (handle inserted to prevent wood from falling out, pic 3), I shut the door, pic 4. When it gets to ~500 on the flu, I shut the air 1/3. I almost never shut more than that as I only use this one for short periods.

Pic 5 is my setup that you can see piping and thermometer.











Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to thinkxingu For This Useful Post:
SailinAway (12-14-2022)
Old 12-14-2022, 04:35 PM   #140
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Thank you for posting those photos. So you pack the stove that full before lighting it? That's surprising. How come there's no wood above the top starter? Is that just to get the draft going? What length do you cut your wood to? It looks like 10" and 14".

I think my problem is lack of pine. I need to get a battery chainsaw and cut down a couple of old pines.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-2022, 04:42 PM   #141
WinnisquamZ
Senior Member
 
WinnisquamZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,560
Thanks: 167
Thanked 495 Times in 332 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
Thank you for posting those photos. So you pack the stove that full before lighting it? That's surprising. How come there's no wood above the top starter? Is that just to get the draft going? What length do you cut your wood to? It looks like 10" and 14".

I think my problem is lack of pine. I need to get a battery chainsaw and cut down a couple of old pines.
Agree. I see that as packing it to tight for a stove start. Half that with smaller pieces. Must add, would create so sort of grate to allow air flow under the fire.


Sent from my iPhone using Winnipesaukee Forum mobile app
WinnisquamZ is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to WinnisquamZ For This Useful Post:
ApS (12-14-2022)
Old 12-14-2022, 04:55 PM   #142
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
Thank you for posting those photos. So you pack the stove that full before lighting it? That's surprising. How come there's no wood above the top starter? Is that just to get the draft going? What length do you cut your wood to? It looks like 10" and 14".

I think my problem is lack of pine. I need to get a battery chainsaw and cut down a couple of old pines.
Pine isn't necessary, it's just what I do to avoid having to use any real kindling.

The starter on top is simply to get the draft going. Once it's going up the pipe, I'm good to start lighting the fire.

In terms of packing the stove, ummm...YES. I'm not wasting time burning five sticks and loading again in 7 minutes with a bit larger stuff and then again in 30 with...blah blah blah.

If I'm home in time, I'll grab a pic of it...3 hours later.

* Note: the downstairs started at 62° and, when I left at 4:30 to run some errands, the room the stove is in was 72 and the rest of the downstairs at ~68. That's using the stove's fan. Otherwise, the room it's in would be closer to high-70's and the others at 65 or so. Outside temp = 32° and windy.

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-2022, 05:02 PM   #143
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Oh, in terms of length: I cut in 18" lengths but there's always chunks and rounds that are less than that, so I just mix them in to use downstairs or N/S upstairs.

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-2022, 05:13 PM   #144
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

This is after 3 hours, about 2/3 through the pine. Look at those secondaries!

In about an hour, I'll reload with hardwood and get usable heat until midnight (it's 5 now).



Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-2022, 10:05 PM   #145
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

What is the temperature on the flue in the above photo?
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 04:49 AM   #146
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailinAway View Post
What is the temperature on the flue in the above photo?
The one right above after a few hours or the last one in the first set that shows the thermometer?

Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 08:15 AM   #147
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
The one right above after a few hours or the last one in the first set that shows the thermometer?
The one right above after a few hours
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 08:32 AM   #148
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

It was just past center, which on my thermometer is ~500.

It was a cozy night!
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 08:36 AM   #149
Poor Richard
Senior Member
 
Poor Richard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: The humbling river
Posts: 271
Thanks: 37
Thanked 70 Times in 48 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post



Sent from my SM-G990U1 using Tapatalk
Compliments on what's probably the clearest glass I've ever seen on a wood stove
Poor Richard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 09:53 AM   #150
WinnisquamZ
Senior Member
 
WinnisquamZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,560
Thanks: 167
Thanked 495 Times in 332 Posts
Default

Let me second that! Any tricks on keeping it clean? I am windexing every other day. May need to purchase some specific fireglass cleaner


Sent from my iPhone using Winnipesaukee Forum mobile app
WinnisquamZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 10:12 AM   #151
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,570
Thanks: 1,119
Thanked 1,782 Times in 1,098 Posts
Default

The glass is only as clean as the burns!

Barring any mistakes–turning down the air too quickly, not getting a strong draft going, or using the wrong wood–it'll be like that most of the season.

If it does get dirty, I just use a piece of newspaper with a little water and ash to clean off anything regular water doesn't.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 12:00 PM   #152
WinnisquamZ
Senior Member
 
WinnisquamZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,560
Thanks: 167
Thanked 495 Times in 332 Posts
Default

Wet paper towel with ash does work. Believe my dirty glass is from the fat wood starter sticks I use.


Sent from my iPhone using Winnipesaukee Forum mobile app
WinnisquamZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2022, 05:44 PM   #153
SailinAway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 989
Thanks: 255
Thanked 277 Times in 168 Posts
Default

Mine comes clean with plain water and a paper towel.
SailinAway is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:25 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions Inc.

This page was generated in 0.85032 seconds