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CFM Vermont Castings Dutchwest Everburn Non-Cat Owners Discussion and Review Thread!

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by tradergordo, Nov 3, 2006.

  1. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    Hopefully I'm not the only Dutchwest Everburner here. Maybe future users will find this thread using the forum's advanced search. If you own this stove, please post your own experiences, wisdom, and reviews!

    A quick background on me - this is my first year as a wood burner, and this is my first stove - so I really don't have a whole lot to compare it with other than a few friends with different stoves. To get the complete low down on my woodstove journey just follow the link in my signature to my woodstove web page. Also just for clarification, CFM bought Vermont Castings but they are keeping the Vermont Castings name (and manufacturing facilities in Vermont) so I use the names interchangeably. Update: CFM went bankrupt in 2008, the Vermont Castings name and product lines were bought by Monessen Hearth Systems Co. (MHSC), warranties on stoves bought before 2009 are not being honored (thanks MHSC!).

    How does Everburn work?
    I wish every owner's manual would explain how the stove really works. They may assume the average person doesn't care or it's not important for operation (I disagree). Some of the old Vermont castings manuals clearly explained how the stoves worked! Note that the description there for "horizontal combustion" applies to everburn stoves and this is one key design element that gives the Dutchwest long burn times and good secondary combustion (when it's working).

    "Everburn" is not described in any detail in my manual, on CFM or VC's websites, or anywhere else on the web that I can find. I even did patent searches. I found lots of CFM and VC patents with lots of details and diagrams of various stoves, but none of the entries seem to describe everburn. The term "everburn" does not exist in any US or Canadian patent.

    Anyway, the everburn system uses secondary burn chambers engineered for better secondary combustion and longer burns. The design makes a lot of sense, basically instead of focusing secondary burn toward the top of the stove (which most models do with burn tubes or baffles at the top) the everburn design forces the combustion gasses back down to the bottom of the firebox and though the hot coals, superheating the gasses before secondary burn occurs (some people call this a "down drafting design"). This means it actually exhausts out the bottom of the firebox and the flames generally go horizontal. This prevents the wood on top from burning prematurely. The other component of the everburn system are the secondary burn chambers which are lined with a "fibrous ceramic filament" which supposedly allows combustion to occur at lower temps than would otherwise be required without a catalyst. According to CFM this ceramic fiber material never degrades, never has to be replaced, and is covered by the lifetime warranty. That's pretty much all I know. The CMF technicians (whom I cannot extract any more info from) tell me I know more about the stove than most of their dealers :)

    Where can I download the owner's manual, brochure, or warranty?
    http://www.vermontcastings.com/content/products/productdetails.cfm?id=314

    Where can I download the service manual?
    I was able to obtain a copy of the service manual in PDF form from the techs at CFM. Hopefully they have no objections to me sharing it:
    http://www.gordosoft.com/woodstove/VermontCastingsDutchwestEverburn_SERVICE_Manual.pdf
    You will find detailed instructions for taking the stove completely apart along with photos of every step.

    Personal user experiences so far:
    [UPDATED after a full year of use] I heated my ENTIRE house with the stove all winter long without having to use my backup furnace. The heat distribution has been excellent without a blower attached to the stove (more on my house layout below). But secondary burn has been inconsistent, the stove can be finicky, especially in 35+F degree temps and/or low atmospheric pressure situations. Other stoves are more user friendly but the Dutchwest works great in very cold temps. Read the full thread for more info. Very dry wood is essential.

    Operational Videos:
    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/14536/
    [END UPDATE]

    Anyway, just when I thought I had this stove figured out, last night it burned like I’ve never seen it burn before. I jokingly say “it went thermo-nuclear”. I guess what I did differently (accidentally?) was get a really huge brick of red hot coals immediately in front of the throat opening at the back. I loaded it with fresh splits, and closed the bypass – it did its normal “everburn rumble” (sounds like a natural gas furnace firing only quieter). The thing is that the rumble just kept going and going, and the flue temps were around 650. I cut the primary air completely off (secondary combustion air is not user controlled and cannot be shut off), and the flue temps stayed above 600 for over an hour anyway. I went outside with a very bright light and was amazed that I could see NOTHING coming out of the chimney (normally there is at least some white vaporous exhaust). You couldn't tell there was a raging fire (or any fire) going on at the time.

    The house got up to 75, my bedroom upstairs was still 75 at 4 o clock in the morning, it was 73 at 7AM (28 outside). This morning, 9 hours after I put the last split in, the stove top was hot, lots of glowing red coals still inside without even having to stir things up. I was able to just toss a new log on and it lit right up.

    Also so far I've been able to get good 8-10 hour burns on a single load with easy restarts. I believe I could get the stated max 14 hour burntime by using the highest BTU wood and packing it as tight as I can although I'm happy just being able to get heat all night and an easy fast reload in the morning which is what I've been seeing.

    Attached Files:

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  2. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    About the space I am heating:
    I live in a well insulated (but not tyvek wrapped) modern house with a very open floor plan. I still don't know exactly how many square feet my house is, you would think that is something I should know :) and one day I need to measure it myself. Zillow.com says 2800 sq. ft. but I have no idea where they got this from, my insurance estimate was 2500, but I think it could be less due to open vaulted ceiling family room (then again I think some count the open space as square footage which also makes sense when you are talking about heating area). It has 4 bedrooms upstairs. A ceiling fan at the top of the family room, where the stove is located - and partly inclined ceiling above the stove helps move the heated air very effectively to the bedrooms upstairs (which are typically 2 degrees warmer than the temps downstairs in the same room as the stove). Also note that in order to prevent excessive heat loss out the chimney, I installed a nice long run of single wall flue pipe (about 9 feet) which runs straight up from the stove inside the room to meet the chimney near the ceiling. There are no bends in the flue or chimney.

    Problems:
    So far I've really only had one big problem. When I first got the stove, I followed the standard break in fire procedures. It created the typical curing paint fumes as expected. But with each subsequent fire I noticed that the fiberglass gasket ropes on the doors were sticking to the cast iron. On about the 4th fire, after really getting it hot and running longer, the front door gasket rope was firmly stuck to the stove, and when I opened it the gasket pulled right off. I asked the dealer & CMF about this, both said it was atypical. They gave me a tube of gasket cement to reattach it. I have not had any problems like this since - I believe the curing paint created a sticky bond with the gasket.

    The only other problem I've seen is the glass getting dirty, but this will happen to any stove when you burn moist wood (cooler fires), allow smoldering, or let the wood get too close to the glass. The glass is easy to clean either way but stays clear when I burn as recommended ( properly seasoned hardwood, wait for a bed of coals before closing bypass).

    A minor thing that other reviewers have mentioned is the somewhat fragile removable door handles. They are made from ceramic, and just dropping it once on your hard tiled hearth pad is enough to chip it. They use removable handles so you can't burn yourself while opening the doors but fumbling around with delicate removable handles is no fun. That said, you can permanently attach your own handles using anything with a 1/4" thread screw at the end (see discussion for pics).

    How does it compare to other stoves?
    As I've already stated, I don't have much experience with other stoves, but here are my thoughts. The Everburn design has its benefits and drawbacks. The thing I like about the typical non-cat stove (burn tubes or baffles at top) is that you don’t have to do anything special to get to secondary burn mode, just load it up and go away. With my Dutchwest you pretty much have to do exactly what the instruction manual tells you to do. You start the fire with the bypass open (this is similar to how you use a catalytic stove). Once you have a nice 2” thick bed of coals toward the back (the throat opening in the lower, center, back to be specific) then you load up with fresh splits, wait a few minutes for the new wood to light, then close the bypass to activate the efficient secondary burn.

    So there is a lot more futzing around compared to other non-cat stoves but I believe it burns more efficiently than most other stoves (the EPA rating on this stove is 1.3 gm/hr by the way, which is one of the best ratings in the industry). It also starts and reloads better (quick easy starts and less potential for smoke to enter your room on reloads) than other stoves due to the bypass feature. One drawback is that its hard to know for sure that the secondary burn is working all the time, I know for certain when I hear that faint low rumble, or see the tell-tale phantom flames (some secondary burn still happens in the main firebox depending on the stage of your burn). But I'm not sure about the rest of the time and I don't know if flue temps are a reliable indicator. With a catalytic stove that has a cat thermometer, you pretty much always know if it is functioning optimally. Another way you are supposed to be able to tell if the stove is burning optimally is by looking at the exhaust coming out the chimney - but I've seen a pretty wide range, anything from absolutely no visible exhaust, to the more typical "white stuff" which is probably mostly water vapor, to the "gray smoke" during start ups.

    Ash removal is very easy on the Dutchwest, and this is another one of the features I like about the stove compared to others. There is a grate at the bottom of the firebox that seems to be sized just right - the ash falls down to the very large ash pan below, which is in its own compartment with an airtight, gasket sealed door. Oh, and ALL off the doors on the Dutchwest have the same 3/8" gaskets and adjustable door latches which can be tightened up as required to keep the stove sealed. You can go for days without removing the ashes, and you can remove the ashes even while a fire is burning.

    Perhaps the most favorable comparison this stove makes to others is its price. I have seen a brand new Dutchwest large (model 2479) sell on eBay for as low as $999 shipped. I found it in the low $11XX range (and many local stove shops will price match). This makes this particular stove a decent value compared to others. But the high number of frusterated owners getting poor secondary combustion should give you pause to consider other models with more favorable reviews.
  3. Corie

    Corie Minister of Fire

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    Wow, that's some review man. Awesome, I'm really glad you're so happy with it. If i come with a 12pack can I see it in action? haha
  4. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    Grab the yuengling and come on down! ;)


    UPDATE ON MY STOVE CONFIGURATION (I would update one of the original two posts, but they have both reached the system size limit so I can't add much to them):

    I had nine feet of single wall flue inside my room. I thought the extra long single wall flue would be a good way to capture extra heat. But I was warned me this could cause the flue gasses to lose too much heat even if it appeared to be working OK. Also the manual doesn't recommend having more than 8 feet of single wall flue. My chimney cap (which is not a very good design, too small and tight) got plugged twice (spark arrestor is way too tight and small, so I removed it after the second cleaning).

    Anyway, long story short - I thought it would be a good idea to change the flue, so I bought another length (2 foot) of double wall pipe, and since I used a long adjustable (slide inside) flue piece, I didn't have to remove any of the single wall pipe, I was able to just slide it down - but this had the effect of adding another 2 feet of double wall (something I didn't really think about before I bought the 2 foot length). So now I have only 5 feet of single wall flue.

    Under the new configuration once again the stove surprised me. With the primary air turned all the way off, I could not get the flue temp to go below 800. I tried adding what I thought was moist wood to the top of the fire - these were some unsplit logs, bark still firmly attached (but had been drying for a few months). I didn't give them any time to light, just tossed them in, closed the door and immediately engaged the bypass. Even after that the flue temps did not go below 800. It stayed above 800 for hours, everburn rumble going the entire time. House temps went up to 82 degrees. It was still 76 when I got up for work this morning. Not sure the changes I made to the flue had anything to do with this though.
  5. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    "Like all non-catalytic EPA approved stoves, rely on a secondary burn chamber to reburn the exhaust gases from the primary fire. In order for the fire in the secondary burn chamber to ignite and stay lit, a minimum firebox temperature must be maintained, which requires that an adequate quantity of combustion air be supplied at all times. To address this need, manufacturers of non-catalytic woodstoves typically incorporate a "stop" in the design of the intake draft control, so some air enters both the primary and secondary fire chambers even when the draft control is turned down as far as it will go. This air is delivered to the fire even when it might not be needed, and thus can cause faster than necessary fuel consumption during certain stages of the fire. The upshot of this situation can be shorter-than-optimum burn times, and frustrated stove owners who find that they often can't "hold" the fire as long as they might want.

    The everbun technology was designed to maximize burn times for each load of fuel by delivering a burst of combustion air to the main and secondary fires when needed, even when the draft control is turned down far enough to create the longest possible burn.

    Basically, the everburn device is a pivot plate, which is mounted in the special fibrous secondary combustion chamber stove's air intake plenum so that it covers and uncovers the hole when it pivots. A thermatic coil is attached to an actuator arm that pivots the plate so that when the firebox begins to cool below a certain point, the coil contracts, and the entire assembly hinges open to uncover the intake hole and provide extra air to the fire. As the burn rate increases from the inflow of oxygen, the firebox heats back up and the coil expands, lowering the base plate back down to seal the hole in the air intake plenum, without changing the original slide draft setting.

    When everburn technology is applied to a woodstove, the operator no longer has to worry about whether or not the manual draft control is turned down too low. If the fire should start to smolder from lack of oxygen, the coil senses the resulting temperature drop and automatically hinges the pivot plate open to supply extra oxygen for as long as it takes to re-establish secondary burn temperature. This enables the stove to be operated at lower manual draft control settings without fear of lost heat, excessive creosote formation or smoke pollution.

    Another benefit of the everburn mechanism comes into play at refueling time. When I've got the draft control set JUST where I like it, I don't want to have to find that setting again after I've opened the draft control to kindle a fresh load and stood there for the 20-30 minutes it takes to get the new load up to temperature. The thermatic mechanism automatically senses the temperature drop in the firebox caused by the load of room-temperature wood, opens the pivot plate to supply extra oxygen to the fire until kindling occurs and secondary lightoff temperature is achieved, then lowers the plate to re-establish my draft"
  6. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    l
    Congratulations you found the sweet spot.. Too many posters post complaining about poor stove preformance. yeah they dampered down and the fire just smoldered or died down.
    There is a bit more involved before dampering down, dry wood , establishing a full bed of red hot coals, and being sure your wood is past its inital burning stage. just getting to 500 degrees and dampering down may no be enough. I find 600 to 650 drgrees I get better results after I damper it down. Again dry wood good bed of coals and waiting for the initial burning stages to end. Enother way is loading the fire box Instead of filling it to the brim I add a few splits at a time get them involved add a few more to fill it watch the thermo rise to 600+ then damper it down I have enjoyed 8 plus hours of 500 plus degrees of heat./ this theory seems to explain, it things in motion tend to stay in motion You get a good secvondary burn it tends to continue.

    A few weeks back we had the cat VS non cat debate. All the benifits in your Everburn technology came fron VC experiences in Cat stove technology. The combustion chamber design adding thermatically controled secondary air down draft the bi pass damper to port super hot exhaust gasses over the coals all part of the past cat technology

    Now supose all the design enhancements to the secondary chamber, the called everburn technology, and augmented by the most effecient cat combustor of its kind.
    A cat combustor that extends that secondary burn 40% longer and burns more particulates, than the common OEM ones of today. Right now 380 is the lowest cat combustor light off that I know of. What we are talking about, is light off under 300 degrees
  7. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    I don't want to be in the neighborhood when that thing sticks in the open position. Whoa Nellie!

    Hmmm... Let me see here. That would be when a nice bed of coals was ready for you to throw a big load of splits on top of them.

    I hope the manual shows a way to shut that sucker off.
  8. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    easiest way to carm that beast down is to add one seasoned split from Mo's wood man
  9. seaken

    seaken Minister of Fire

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    Elk, where did you get this quote from?
  10. seaken

    seaken Minister of Fire

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    Elk, it is my understanding that only catalytics can achieve combustion of gases below 1100 degrees F. The Everburn allows the 1100 degree temperatures and does not need a catalyst. It is the drawing of the exhaust down through the coal bed that encourages the combustion of the gases at the higher temperature, above 1100. This is different from a Catalytic where the smoke is hitting the catalyst at about 600 degrees F. I can't tell if you are talking about Catalytic or non-Catalytic burn here. Can non-Cat burn happen below 1100 degrees F? Please explain.
  11. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    Great post! One question for ya. Are you talking flue temps or stove top temps? Do you have a magnetic thermometer on your stove pipe? If so, and it's reading 600, that's alot of heat going up the chimney? When my stove is chuggin along at a 600 stove top temp, my stove pipe reads roughly half that.
  12. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    The bottom exhausting / down drafting design is great, but that is not what makes it the "everburn" system. The new twist VC has added is this so called "state-of-the-art ceramic fiber material" which lines the secondary combustion chambers. Supposedly this allows for combustion to take place at lower temperatures.

    Exactly what temp can combustion occur? How exactly does this space age material work? Is it all just marketng hype? :) No idea...
  13. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    I'm using a condar probe thermometer in the flue. Are you sure you didn't reverse stove top and stove pipe in your question (does soapstone even get above 500)? Well its probably totally different with an external pipe temp, but the flue gasses should always be hotter than the stove top temperature except for when the fire is dying down. I capture a lot of the heat of that exhaust via 9 feet of single wall flue pipe inside the room (probe is near the bottom).
  14. BurningIsLove

    BurningIsLove New Member

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    Tradergordo, that was one of the best posts on the DW I've seen so far, thx! I installed mine (DW 2479 large) at the tail end of last year's burning season (late Feb), and have only had a 1/2 dozen nites this season that warranted a good fire, as my house is well insulated and gets a lot of passive solar heat which is a rapidly diminishing heat source this far north. I can also heat my entire house w/ ease, including my recently attached two-story garage/woodworking shop which has an interior masonry chimney running up along the common wall through both the garage/shop.

    My biggest difficulty has been getting the reburner to work consistently. As you stated, it's really obvious when it is operating properly as the 'everburn rumble' is impossible to mistake, not to mention that there isnt even the smallest trace of particulate or smoke coming out the top of the stack. Many times I reload the box, get everything burning well, temp around 550-600, close the bypass, and hear the rumble. However after about 30 seconds the rumble fades and the temp drops like a stone to about 350. Other times, the rumble continues, and like you said, the stove goes nuclear and there is no way to get it below 500 even w/ the air valve completely closed. But from your post, it looks like the stove still lets in air to the reburn chamber despite the air setting.

    Here are the ways I've found to get a successful reburn (besides the obvious use of dry, seasoned hardwood):

    1) ensure the stack is warm to the touch. Mine is clay liner w/ concrete block exterior. Takes about an hour of a hot fire before it's above room temp. If its too cold, my draft is decreased noticably. Even when slightly warm, the decreased draft can stall the reburner.

    2) when you reload w/ fresh splits, push some of the existing hot coal bed to the back so the air has to flow thru the hot coals

    3) After loading fresh splits, wait longer than you're used to before closing the bypass. If the splits arent going dropping coals around the edges, it's usually going to stall since the air entering the reburner is cooled by the splits. you can choke down the air while everything catches & is burning to increase burn time. Even then, there will be very little smoke coming out the top of the stack, and it serves to heat the stack even more to increase draft which is essential.

    4) Safety purists avert your eyes!!! This technique is probably not the smartest, but done with care & a watchful eye, I dont think its that dangerous. When the splits are burning and the stove is approaching temp (500+), open the ash pan door a crack. This not only lets you make sure all the splits are burning via the extra light, it drastically increases the draft temporarily. When temp is about 600, close the pan door, wait about 3 seconds, then close the bypass. This is usually enuf to jumpstart the reburner if it's being stubborn. DO NOT leave the stove unattended whatsoever during this time, it only takes a few seconds anyhow.


    I also can't stand the detachable handles. Mine shattered after the very first drop, then twice more since. Terrible design. You are correct that they take a standard thread. You can actually unscrew the blunt insert and screw it directly onto any of the handles. This of course heats up the handles frighteningly fast. Im experimenting w/ buying some coils to wrap around a longer handle. I grew up w/ a Russo stove that had those, and gloves were never needed to operate the handles. Here is a thread that discusses this more:
    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/837/

    Any other tips on dealing w/ a stubborn everburn DW are much appreciated, this is my first non-cat stove and Im still fumbling w/ that aspect.
  15. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    Ok, I get it now. A probe thermometer will read higher than magnetic type I have.

    And yes my stove top has gotten as high as 725 and normaly run it between 450-600.
  16. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    Burning - thanks - that is the kind of info I was hoping to see. I also read some other user reviews of our stove, one person mentioned cracking the ash door to get up to temp (I think this superheats the secondary burn chamber), another person mentioned starting the fire basically with a pile of wood completely against the back of the firebox to warm the secondary burn chambers which sounds like a good idea. Like you, I push the hot coals towards the back before reloading. I'll definitely post if and when I find any other tricks that help.

    So do you think that the secondary burn is only working when you hear the everburn rumble? I wasn't really sure - was thinking possibly you only get that sound when there is extra strong draft or very high levels of combustion gas to burn. That doesn't neccesarily mean it isn't burning efficiently when its not rumbling away but I don't really know?

    I know what you mean about closing the bypass and seeing the temps drop - this usually happens when I don't have a big enough coal bed. I assume once it gets seriously cold out its going to be easier to get those big coal beds and high efficiency burns (less of the stop and start stuff).

    I have an idea for making handles - create a mold using the existing handle, fill mold with high temp silicone sealant, drop appropriately sized screw into mold, when it dries, flip over and do the other half. I've done something similar before. I'll let you know if I try this, I'll take pictures of the whole process. Of course it'd be a lot easier to just pay the $20 for 3 new retail handles, but from what I understand they get really hot when screwed in. No idea what a silicone handle would be like...
  17. greenergrass

    greenergrass New Member

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    I usually start out with 2 small splits.(2"x20"). I place them side by side running Parralel to front door. I fill the area between with 3 or 4 sheets of newspaper. I then place a good amout of kindling on top of everthing (usually pine). I light the newspaper and within 5 minutes the fire is going good. I continue adding small splits (finger size) to the fire until I get a really good bed of coals. I am now ready for loading up (45 minuteu to 1 hour). I push the coals towards the back and load up with 4 big splits(3" to 4 ") and whatever else I can fit with little splits. The surface temp, wich is read from the side opposite the loading door, reads around 600. I wait for about 10 to 15 minutes for new load to catch and close the damper. With that size load I am usually good for 6 hrs with cherry and maple.
  18. BurningIsLove

    BurningIsLove New Member

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    Gordo....
    Yer actually double counting me on that ash-pan method, since Im the same DW owner you just emailed. :)

    I think the reburner is working sometimes when I dont hear the rumble For mine the sure test is the magnetic thermometer on the flu pipe on the back of the stove. If its 450+ and there is no visible smoke coming out the top of the stack, and the heat-distorted exhaust from the stack is exiting quickly, then I presume its working. If the temp drops low, almost inevitably smoke starts coming out the stack and its time to kickstart it again.

    In MA we just wrapped up a cold snap where I was burning almost continuously for several days. The interior stack was warm to the touch the whole time, even to the point of almost burning my hand w/ prolonged contact. The draft was substantially better as you might expect, but even then I did have the occassional stalling of the reburner after a reload. I found that keeping a certain depth of hot burning coals was essential, much thicker than I'd like because that means more frequent reloads of fresh splits.

    Def let me know how you make out w/ creating your own handles. Definitely dont just remove the blunt insert and screw onto a handle receiver, as the ceramic handle becomes scorching hot in just a few minutes. Im off to Home Despot in a few w/ my broken handle to find some same-sized bolts that I can make handles with. Still debating what to cover the bolts with. If I can find a Russo/Lopi handle which has the coils, Im shooting for that.
  19. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    The bolt (for the handle) is 3 & 1/4 inch long, and 1/4 inch diameter.

    Since these welding hammers:
    http://www.harborfreightusa.com/usa/itemdisplay/displayItem.do?itemid=38853
    are on sale for just $2 right now (with coupon) I was thinking about some way to take its handle and use it for our stove - it has the nice wire wrap, but this would probably require some welding unless you can thread a bolt right thru it, I'll have to look into it.

    Green - you reminded me that I really should try burning with smaller splits. You would probably laugh if you saw what I've been burning (mostly enormous splits, which do burn forever but not as hot). I really need to go out and resplit about half my wood. I'm sure I would get faster coal beds that way.

    As for starting - this is what I found works best for me (and does create a decent coal bed). I’ve been using super dry pallet wood (probably pine or poplar). There are free pallets all over the place around me, so I got a couple trailers full and chainsawed them all up. This is way easier and works so much better than collecting, breaking up, and using small branches or splits. I also discovered that those 6 lbs. duraflame logs make awesome dirt cheap firestarters. I took one of them outside and used the circular saw to cut a lot of groves in it, then pulled chunks apart by hand to make 45 firestarters from one log. They are easy to light, burn a long time, and burn hot. The best thing is that they make almost no smoke or fly ash as opposed to using newspaper, bark, leaves, or lots of little twigs. The log was like $2.70 so that comes to about 6 cents per firestarter but I've found that I can break them in half again and use it to start in two places for faster starts.

    p.s. I had another "thermo-nuclear" fire last night, so I'm definitely learning how to properly operate this stove. When you get a good everburn going, it is really efficient and long burning. It got a little out of hand last night though, my bedroom upstairs at one point hit 77 degrees, I had to close the doors and open a window it was so hot.
  20. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    I made mine using 5/8" dowel center boring counter sink the top so you wan't touch metal and used 3.5" 1/4 thread screwed it in has not burned off yet
  21. BurningIsLove

    BurningIsLove New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    353
    Loc:
    Billerica, MA
    Im also a big fan of cheap kindling.....my stove installation was part of a much larger addition which included a 2-car garage & wood shop above the garage. So I have piles upon piles of KD pine scrap that I use to create my initial coal bed. But being softwood, it takes a lot of scrap volume to create any appreciable coals. I love using my splitting maul, my last set of rounds I hauled out of the woods I reduced practically to kindling size, but of course they wont be seasoned until next year. So I'll probably split up some medium splits as well.

    I have the same overheating problem when my stove gets into the zone... I leave the door to the garage (right next to the stove) wide open, as well as opening the big french doors by the stove a few inches, else the living room gets well into the 90s and the upstairs into the low 80's. I also sometimes flip on the HVAC blower which is super inefficient at distributing heat, but it does bleed off some heat into the basement while keeping the living room tolerable.
  22. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Messages:
    806
    Loc:
    Phoenixville, PA
    Heh - I didn't even think wood handles were an option! ;)
  23. BurningIsLove

    BurningIsLove New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    353
    Loc:
    Billerica, MA
    I was debating creating wooden handles on my lathe, had seen them on a stove in my local stove shop.

    Elkimmeg, since I can create any length/diameter I want making them from scratch, would you recommend the same size as your dowel (5/8") or a larger diameter? How hot do your handles get after continual operation?
  24. BurningIsLove

    BurningIsLove New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    353
    Loc:
    Billerica, MA
    Here is a shot I took of my DW in thermo-nukular mode (OK, in reality I took about 50 pics). I liked this one since it captures a random gas pocket mid-explosion......it was also one of the few that were reasonably straight and in focus. :)

    Stove was about 550 at the time (my BAC about .15)

    Attached Files:

  25. Sandor

    Sandor Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2005
    Messages:
    917
    Loc:
    Deltaville,VA
    Wow, great pic!

    Is this the same stove that Trader had an Ebay link to - for $999 brand new?

    If so, must be the deal of the century!

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