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Posted By bren582,
Nov 4, 2008 at 3:52 AM
Thanks for the clarification. tinging (ting! ting! ting!) is it. I also notice that as I damper down the heat output grows big time.
What type of wood are you burning?
Most of my current stock of seasoned wood is Red/White Oak and Black Locust, all very common hear in the Northeast US. If I damper down to quick the fire will smolder versus flame. I'm on a learning curve hear but it seems that the oak and Locust needs to burn longer and hotter than softer woods would require. The resulting red hot coal bed is great and throws a great deal of heat for a long period but it takes time and air to get there. I have some silver maple rounds from a tree trimming this past summer that is probably pretty dry, I have to cut some up and give it a shot to see the deference in burn rate/Damper ratio.
It's a sub-species of evergreen oak: Quercus ilex rotundifolia (picture below). Also olive, both so well seasoned (split spring 2007) that I can completely close the damper after five minutes without any sign of smoke from the chimney when reloading over coals glowing bright orange. I've also got a big pile of almond but it's a bit suspect though as it's only been split nine months.
I tried some of the evergreen oak last March and it was a bit like that almost one year after being split. Your long lasting coalbed also makes me think the wood might need a tad more seasoning, but it may just be that soapstone liner retaining the heat.
Thanks for the feedback bokehman.
The Oak genus is indeed diverse, some 400+ species strong. I so often associate Oak with deciduous tree's due to my northern America's geographic location and the standard oaks native to this area. I wonder how the evergreen or hybridised species compare with the Red, White, Black, Pin, Live etc?
My current stock of red/white etc.. is 2+ years seasoned since split/stack and shows no audible hissing upon burning. I think I might be a victim of my own impatience. I tried a burn last night with a mix of red oak, locust and some silver maple and the results seem promising.
Leaving the door ajar for the first 5 minutes gets things going with a blast furnace affect. Another 10 minutes and secondary burn is evident. at 30 minutes i'm damped down to 75% and the flames grow lazy but continue to burn and the heat output grows significantly, I guess because I'm not allowing so mutch heat up the flue?
2 hours later and I have a really nice bed of read hot coals kicking out some serious heat. Stoke with a few splits opening the damper full and the flames return within minutes, then damper down 30%, 60% 80% in 10 minute stages. The temp in the family room goes from 62 to 80 in about 2 hours time and the kitchen and living room to 71. Very comfortable and the heat feels so much warmer compared to the forced hot air furnace.
I haven't experimented with over night burns yet. I'm not loading the insert to that degree yet.. I'm on a serious learning curve here.. So far the heat output has exceeded my expectations and I really do enjoy watching and tending over the burn. Always have, but the wasted effort with an open masonry fireplace was pointless. having the insert is really living!!
It will be interesting to see how things go with 20degree or colder outside temps?? This past week has been more like 30 to 40 night time range..
OK, Finally got around to assembly and installation of the surround. So this project is pretty much complete now. I am left thinking what I can do to address the brick arch that shows above the surround. perhaps paint it black or try to find some form of appointment, maybe a cast iron piece cut to match the arch and finish it off..
Any ideas on finishing off the arch surround would be greatly appreciated..
Thanks again to this forum for the educational experience provided..
It looks really cool. I'm not sure about the brick arch. I wouldn't paint it though; once you paint it there's no going back and it looks fine as it is. Some sort of iron trim like you said might work well too. How are you getting on with your fires now you've burned it a few times?
Yeah, will hold off on the paint in favor of some form of cast appointment or trim.
On the burns, yes things are improving the more I use the insert. Seems for this particular install damping down completely cause me to loose fire even with well seasoned wood. So I end up with a good deal of unburnt coal versus a complete burn down to ash. I can go as far as about 80% max and burn down to mostly ash. Maybe this is due to my relatively short chimney height? Approx 16ft and on an external wall.
I do notice the draw is better the colder it is outside, due to temp difference i guess. But even on the coldest nights so far, about 15 Degrees F, I would characterise my draft as average and I'm wondering if this is why I can't damp down completely.
Bren, with regard to damping it down, outside air temperature, the height of the chimney and the wood itself definitely all play a role. I have a Clydesdale with an inside chimney that is 30+ feet. Earlier in the season, when temps were in the 30s-40s, damping it down all the way would result in less than satisfactory burns with maple, but would be fine with a load of pine (well-seasoned wood). Now, with outside temperatures down (in the single digits the past couple of days), I need to move the air control to the lowest setting after just 5-10 minutes to get the best heat out of the stove; with the colder outside temps, more air just sends the heat up the chimney.
Great install, by the way!