Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Gyprat, Oct 7, 2011.
Gyprat, do you have the ceramic or steel cat?
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Gyprat, is this a cold start that you are describing? This is a great stove, but cold starts are not its forte. Cold stone soaks up a lot of heat. Reloading on hot coals is the shizzle, as with most stoves, and this is easily done every 10 hours with the FV. WAG: Did you seal the connection @ the flue collar with furnace cement? Certainly, try a new cat if nothing else solves your problem.
And for sure, call Woodstock.
I used some stove cement on the chimney joints.
Just got off the phone with Woodstock. They are sending a new combustor. The guy I talked to said they never had any problems with new catalytic converters. He also mentioned that new steel combustors are much better than the ceramic ones and they should last longer.
Ive heard of this once, but the persons air control lever wasnt set right, it had come undone from the actual shutter. Maybe take a peak at that.
Do you know what your stack temps are? Ive found knowing this helps me adjust the air control better than just a stove top thermo. At least with the soapstone anyhow.
You should have that new cat in only a couple of days but I still doubt that it is the cat. Woodstock will check the cat as soon as it has been returned.
In the meantime, could you please be specific with your wood supply. I realize you purchased from someone that is apparently reliable but yet we still find there are many suppliers who just are not that knowledgeable and some are even dishonest.
Here is what we would like to know:
1. When was this wood purchased?
2. What type of wood is this?
3. When does the supplier say this wood was split; not cut, but split and stacked.
4. How did you handle the wood after receiving it? Stacked outdoors? Indoors?
5. What was the weather like when you tried running the stove. Temperature? Stormy? Windy? etc.
Also on running the stove, flue temperature should be 400 and stove top 200 before engaging the cat. Once the cat is engaged, I suggest you set the draft at 1.
On the draft control, I doubt this is a problem but easy to check unless you have a rear heat shield. On the bottom of the draft control you'll see a rod that runs toward the center of the stove. That rod is connected to a little slider which you can actually see. Move the draft control. Does this slider move? You can determine if it is connected really easy and if the slider has somehow hopped off the track (this could happen during shipping) then it is easy to set the slider back onto the track.
I had a similar problem with my Fireview just not acting right this fall. I figured the marginal draft was due to the warmish weather. But I still wanted to burn the stove and take the chill off inside our old brick farm house.
The stove just wouldn't run right. I ended up having to start at 4 and run at 2. Stove top temps struggled to hit 400. Every time I opened the door to load the stove, I got a face-full of smoke. I was starting to get annoyed and my wife wasn't liking the house smelling wood smoke either.
I eventually looked up the SuperVent chimney via my outside tee and realized my poor draft was because something was blocking my chimney pipe! Turns out, the very top was roughly 80% blocked by some charred heavy-weight paper inside the cap. I dimly recall using some sheets of heavy paper to get a draft going once back in early fall. Guess I should have weighted them down?
With a clear chimney, my draft is back to normal and my Fireview hits 400-500 easily on the first load and 600 without much problem on reloads. This is burning poplar split and stacked under a roof for 15 months.
How's your draft?
Chimney is brand new, draft is excellent.
Checked the air control shutter several times.
It's hard to tell what stack temperature is. We got double wall close clearance pipe between the stove and the ceiling suppurt assembly. There is a magnetic thermometer on the pipe and it reads anywhere from 90 -300 degrees.
1. This wood was purchased 2 month ago. Moisture reads anywhere from 10 - 20%. Right now I only burn the most seasoned (<15 %) pieces.
2. Mostly oak
3. He says it was split last fall
4. It's stacked outside covered on top. I put two treated 2x4's on the ground and stack wood on top of it. The stack is 8' long x 5' high. I also tried store purchased, kiln dried wood. Same result. My neighbor has a Keystone stove, I got some of his wood and it made no difference. He has no problem getting his stove to temperature.
5. Last night it got down to 27 degrees, no wind.
P.S. Thanks everybody for trying to help me. Maybe I'm just expecting too much from this stove....
What size are your splits? It can be harder to get her going with big splits or rounds. I like the size of my splits 2-5" so I can fill the stove with 5 or more for a full load.
Probably just need a little more time with it. I remember my first few days with my Fireview were a little disappointing and after I figured out more air doesn't necessarily mean more heat, I just stopped tweaking with the air and she started to throw great heat. I also had my air slide off track the first full year and was burning between 0-.5, after fixing that the stove was more controllable and was burning around 1.
Sorry, but if that oak was split last fall, I could care less what your MM reads. That simply is not enough time for oak to dry properly. On the kiln dried wood, that may or may not be good. I've seen supposed kiln dried wood that sells around our area and maybe it was dried....but the wood was not ready to burn for sure. It will be difficult for you to find good wood now so you might do yourself a big favor and get next year's wood purchased as soon as possible and get it stacked out like you've described. Your stove will work properly if the fuel is good.
As for the cat glowing on one side, that is common and nothing to be concerned with.
Heck you bought the kind of stove Dennis has, I can't help you Shucks sometimes he drys wood for 8 yrs and he says it burns fine.
6 month Oak will keep you warm with the other kind. Maybe the next 7 winters will be mild.
. . .and the Ozzies hit back with a wicked left hook. At 22", they have the longer reach, but what about the legs? Can they go the distance? Will they still be standing after 12 hours, or will they be knocked out cold?
:lol: :lol: All in Fun
This appears to be a fuel issue as backwoods stated. Btu's will be stolen to boil off any moisture rather than go to useable heat.
To be honest, once the cat is lit it jump up to 400 pretty quick, then slows down as it works its way up too and past 500. After a steel tube stove, a cast tube stove, and a soapstone cat stove, i think the cats are but a bit easier to run. Really. I say this because its easier to get to and stay in the cruising mode, rather than adjusting the air in stages constantly to get and keep secondaries.
Its different than a car where more throttle means go faster. Stoves to a point, the less air in, less out, more heat stays in the stove. Has taken me time to learn this.
Gyprat, try and mix in lumber scraps with your current cord wood, dont do a full load of lumber. And no pressure treated wood either. You should see that you can burn at a lower air setting, such as 1. This should help you get up to temps. If not maybe we can rule out the fuel issue.
Best of luck.
No way are you expecting too much from this stove. Something is not right and almost everything points to the fuel. Mostly oak says a lot! As I've stated, oak is one of the very best woods for us. However, oak is also the hardest wood to dry and that is why we wait 3 years around these parts before we try to burn it.
Not saying that the cat stove with its "set it and forget it" flip to the cat isn't the cat's meow because it is appealing . . . but I am wondering about fiddling around constantly to get and keep the secondaries . . . I mean with my Oslo once it's up to temp I generally kick it back to the halfway mark, let it settle down at that temp for 10 minutes or so and then kick it back to the quarter mark and let it settle . . . if it's been running for a while I'll often then kick it all the way "shut" . . . a little more fiddling, but once at the quarter or "closed" mark there is no more messing around with the air control as it goes through the burning cycle.
Your right jake, i shouldnt make it seem as if im fooling around with it all the time like newlyweds, i tend to follow your description. Everynow and again the load or weather conditions catch me.
Not knocking the non cat, it wouldnt be going to the spot its heading if it wasnt a heat monster, and reliable. I fully expect to " set and forget" her as well. Maybe not forget, but you catch my drift.
One other thought on your moisture reading - take the reading from the inside of a piece, in other words, split a piece of wood and take the measurement from the inside vs the surface of the outside part that has been drying.
I have found with two stove, one a Woodstock, that the first burns in a new stove are the hardest. It can be very frustrating. Hang in there - you got a great stove.
Got the new replacement catalyst. Installed it yesterday. Big difference. Now I can see it glow and the stove top tempeature climbs up much faster. I loaded the stove this morning at 8 a.m. Got home at 5 P.M. and the stove temperatyre was still near 300 degrees.
I think the combustor was defective or something happened to it during the initial burn-in procedure.
So far so good.
Woodstock customer service appears to be top notch. They sent the replacement free of charge and even paid return shipping. They even answer phones on Saturdays.
Yes indeed. Woodstock is second to none in the customer service area and yes, they do work the phones on Saturdays. Glad this has worked out Gyprat. Enjoy.
Out of curiosity, has Woodstock ever considered developing a stove that wasn't soapstone?
Not sure on that but I doubt it. Realize the name of the company is Woodstock Soapstone Company.
Understood. Just wondering.
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