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Jotul F-50 thread per request.

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Pallet Pete, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I have recently had a couple inquiries about my stove and thought I would give some updates for people that are interested. It has been amazing after a few small issues got resolved.

    1st issue was the gaskets they where not cured all the way and seated improperly from the factory. This was a problem discovered after the fact and fixed by Jotul. ( we where more than reimbursed ) Long story short they offered to fix it free of charge and we needed heat fast so I bought gaskets and cement fixed it and we are happy now.

    2nd issue was not really an issue but a learning curve this stove really likes big chunks / rounds ! The stove throws way way to much heat with a split under 4". Generally I stick 5" to 7" in and pack it tight then put smaller splits to fill the gaps with that layout it really heats well.

    Top down fires are absalutly fantastic in this stove it lights very fast and without much effort. 15 minutes and presto it is already lit and throwing heat out. On our chimney we can run between 600f and 750f steadly with a stove top around 450 on the right hand top side. The center will be much hotter but is inaccurate because of the steel top load door. The top load only gets used when there is a coal bed and I just want to add one or two pieces or if there is a bunch of poppy wood inside overall we like the top load and cooktop in one. If you use the sides it is much easier to control as well. The ash door is a pita however through trial and error I discovered that it is needed with this stove. After being annoyed by the ash pan door over and over I decided to weld a block off plate in it and forget it. The stove was much easier to control however it builds ash so fast due to the sheer amount of wood it holds that I ended up going back to using it. ( this is with well under 20% wood mind you ) the issue is ash gets behind the ash pan when you pull it out and keeps it from going all the way in when its empty. The ash is a royal pain to remove from the back of the compartment once the pan is out. If you don't get it all out the ash door won't shut all the way and causes to much air to get in the box. The fix was to bend an old ash shovel into an ash rake and that works very well for both the ash door and box. The stove really throws good long heat and we regularly get 12 to 13 hours with hot coals good enouph for reloading without a lighter. Over all it has been a very good experience and Jotul has proven to have good customer service. Hopefully I have answered any questions you guys have if not just ask !

    Pete

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  2. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    4,059
    Loc:
    southern Indiana
    Thanks for the info. Some stoves have the back of the ashpan cut off from the factory, it acts as a shovel when ash has fallen in the way. You could give it a try.
  3. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I thought of that but I really don't like the idea of ash spilling out on the floor. Thanks webby for the tip maybe if I can figure out how to do it safely.

    Pete
  4. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    4,059
    Loc:
    southern Indiana
    Ya, it could be messier. I had the same trouble with my Oslo ash pan. My Leyden hasn't had this problem yet, I'm not sure why. Maybe they left more room behind the pan.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  5. Dutch

    Dutch New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Messages:
    30
    Loc:
    Southern WI
    Hey Pete

    I am running the very similar F-55 and have a question about how you run your stove. How often are you bottoming out your air control? I have 6 foot of stove pipe and 16 feet of class A, all straight up. I typically am leaving it open partially. This is producing consisting 12 hour burns with a not very packed firebox. This is no complaint by any means, I just assumed with my well drafting system that I wouldn't have open that much. What is your experience?


    Dutch
    CASEMAN2011 likes this.
  6. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Hi Dutch I never shut it all the way typically I leave it about 1/16 open and it runs perfect like that. If you shut it all the way down the stove will eventually start to smoke and die in my experience. The air even when shut all the way still has to let in air but it is not enough. One thing for sure the stove is a beast and likes to run hot. How far open do you leave it ? How dry is your wood ? The f-50 craves very dry wood if you burn even slightly damp wood it takes a tremendous amount of air to keep it going. This really applies to most EPA stoves dry wood that is 20% or less moister.

    Pete
  7. Dutch

    Dutch New Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Southern WI
    I would agree that I leave it around 1/16 to an 1/8 open. My wood is all very dry, around 16 on a resplit peice. It is nice that the stove closes down that low if needed. I have had it shut down on very windy days, also with some very fast burning wood. I don't think the stove is too fussy with wood as long as you keep in mind that the air inlet is rather conservative on these models. All is well just thought I would see how some other Jotul owners operate their stove.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  8. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Something else I should add ! On reload I pull all the coal forward into a big pile and open the air all the way. That process keeps the stove nice and hot longer and I can burn them down for a couple of hours before reloading. when i turn the air down I wait for the tubes to get going and the flue to be around 400F at that point I turn it to half. After it climbs to 600F on the flue I can pretty much set it and forget it wherever I want which is usually in the 1/16 to 1/4 range. We don't even use the stove top as a guide for firing it up only for when to load it.

    Pete
  9. Dutch

    Dutch New Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Southern WI
    Ate those internal or external single wall temps?
  10. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I apolagize I think I miss understood you ! Those are condor flu prob tempts on double wall pipe. Personally I would not single wall pipe with an EPA stove again been there and did not like it. Double wall stainless is much safer due to the stainless inner pipe.

    Pete
  11. Dutch

    Dutch New Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Southern WI
    Thanks for the information. I have been meaning to install a flue probe. I think I will finally get around to doing so and see if my stove performs similarly.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  12. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Pete's experience pretty much mirror's mine with this stove, minus the initial gasket issues.

    Pete, I too hate it when I forget to empty the ash pan every few loads and the ash spills out. I found a regular ash shovel cleans out the ash pan box pretty quick. I'm also considering buying/making another pan so I can "hot swap" 'em quick.

    With good dry wood, I frequently bottom out my air control, and the stove cruises @ about 400-450 stove top. roughly 5 ft of stove pipe and another 12-14 ft of ICC Excel Class A.
    CASEMAN2011 and Pallet Pete like this.
  13. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I have been meaning to order a second pan and have not. Now I think I am going to make one with a liner to go under it as well. When you pull the pan out the liner would collect all the spillage and it could be pulled out and dumped back into the ash pan. I feel this would solve the 50's bad as design
  14. DJB

    DJB New Member

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    Jan 16, 2013
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    12
    Loc:
    Marshfield, MA
    This is my first post here, I couldn't tell you how many hours I've already spent, just reading and reading. Anyways...I've been looking to replace my ailing Vermont Castings 2550, and a nice new rangeley seems to be at the top of my list. You guys all seem pretty happy with them. If you had to do it again, would you still go with the F50? The ash pan problem seems to be similar to that of my F3, so I'm already used to that. Any other issues with it? small annoyances? Do you find the top load to be worth the extra cost, or would I be better off with the F55?
    CASEMAN2011 likes this.
  15. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Absolutely.
    If you empty it every 2-3 loads or so (usually every other day with my burning habits) it's just a matter of pulling it, dumping it in my ash bucket and replacing it. It only gets to be an annoyance if I get lazy and neglect it.
    I like both the top load and ash pan features of the Rangeley and love the appearance of the griddle/top load door. However the F55 does come with a larger firebox. I do in fact top load (much more this season than the previous two since I retired my near worthless steamer.) and find that feature useful for reducing the amount of ash spilled onto the hearth compared to front-loading. Note that I top-load only to add a couple splits at a time (useful for the days I am home) and only while the chimney is warm and pulling strong draft. I front-load for cold starts and when packing the stove for a long burn (overnights). This stove absolutely loves to be loaded N-S and that is not practical to do via top-loading. If the Rangeley was on the edge of my heat requirements (far from it, >>) I wouldn't hesitate to go with the larger firebox of the F55 instead and forgo the ash pan and top-loading.
    CASEMAN2011 and Pallet Pete like this.
  16. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Without a second thought I would buy this stove again! We have had a few stoves over the years and this is by far the best quality and our favorite. The air is almost like controlling a gas fireplace compared to our previous stoves.

    Pete
  17. DJB

    DJB New Member

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    Loc:
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    Thanks guys, i think you've convinced me (not that I needed any convincing). Do any of you have the blower? I'm trying to decide if it's worth the extra $300 for it. I can buy an awful lot of fans with $300.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  18. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    I have it, in a box in the attic. Skip it.
  19. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    No blower the most effective method is to move air to the stove not away. We use a stick fan on the far edge of the house pointed to the stove. The house gets very warm quickly then.

    Pete
  20. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Not to mention the blower shroud for the Rangeley is FUUUUUUUGGGLY! :p

    Mine was free. If you want one, maybe the dealer would toss one in free? ;) I'd rather have gotten the OAK for free tho.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  21. Heather

    Heather New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2012
    Messages:
    16
    Loc:
    Washington State
    We've had our new Rangeley for a few months now and are happy with it. It's our first EPA stove, so that was a big adjustment. You can't load it up with wood and immediately dial back the air, so it takes some planning if you are leaving for the day or wanting an overnight burn. At first this seemed like an annoyance, but now we have adapted to it. I haven't had any issues with the ashpan. We don't use the top load feature, because it seems better to place the logs N/S. I do like the Wintergrill feature, however. It makes wonderful baked potatoes! Also, if you enjoy cooking on top of a woodstove the Rangeley is great. Maybe it's because of the cavity under the grill, but it seems to cook soups, etc. gently rather than boil the heck out of them. Finally, I love the appearance of the Rangeley. It looks so beautiful in my living room!
    CASEMAN2011 and Pallet Pete like this.
  22. cmperry

    cmperry New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2012
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    Loc:
    Eastern Maine
    Absolutely the best stove we have ever owned. It is so predictable,open air,load 6 splits,slide air back half way and let temp climb to around 400-450,close air (all the way to the left),stove temps build to 550-650 and slowly decreases. Open air, rake coals to front and repeat all winter...love it!!
    CASEMAN2011, Pallet Pete and Heather like this.
  23. jrcurto

    jrcurto Member

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    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Southern Connecticut
    3rd year with the T50 Rangeley and the first year with dry oak and hickory, I'm lovin it. My neighbors are bitter when they see the chimney pipe just ripping clear heat convection. House interior a steady 70-75. This cold snap has really showed me what an EPA stove is capable of.
    CASEMAN2011 and Pallet Pete like this.
  24. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    That is so true too! We don't ha e a real cool down time in between loads anymore maybe a 5 degree difference is all on a really cold night.

    Pete
  25. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2012
    Messages:
    50
    Loc:
    Iowa City, Iowa
    We built a new house with an F50 - so far it's been heating about 2800 sf regularly....below is a pic.

    Love the responsiveness and long burn times with the stove. As for the ash pan - the first time I went to use it learned one lesson - don't open the ash pan door without opening the front door - sounded like a jet plane taking off! As for the ashes behind the pan - what I've been doing is letting the stove cool down (usually when I get home from work) - I then work the ashes around the stove letting them fall around the ash pan. This way when I open the ash pan there isn't as much to fall down while it's out. Also, I need to make sure to unload it at least daily.

    And yes - rake the red coals to the front!

    Had a few problems with black glass but not the stove's fault - I split what I thought was a downed ash tree - but it's not ash.

    Side note - we don't have the blower for the stove. But when we built the house I did put in a separate duct through the floor beams - it pulls cool air from the far side of the house and blows it out behind the stove. You can't see the vent unless you look for it. But I put it on a variable speed switch and if the house is cold and we crank it up it heats up quick. Otherwise we leave it on low and it moves the heat around nicely. Draws about the same as a 60w light bulb - and you can't hear it.

    I would recommend this stove to others.

    And one more thing - we have the OAK on ours. Does anyone else have this? While the stove does draft well with it, if I do not cut the air down before trying to reload I get smoke spillage - not sure if this is related to the OAK or not.

    Jotul F50.jpg
    CASEMAN2011 and Billybonfire like this.

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