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Newbie question

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by d.braun.28, Dec 31, 2008.

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  1. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    This is my first season of burning and I have a travis 44 elite that I love but the thing burn's thru a ton of wood. I am having trouble getting beyond 350 deg as indacated by a a magnetic rutland Burn indicator on the outside of the doors. I was told to put it there by my local dealer. She also told me not to engage the cat until I reach 500 deg. Above 500 deg I am aproaching overburn according to the burn indicator. I suspect that my wood is part of the problem is I had little time to scrounge after completeing the house. Also when I engage the cat when I am around 350 deg and loaded up the cat does not glow nor does the flame enter directly into the cat.
    Could this be a draft issue? I have 30 ft of pipe but the house is as tight as a frogs butt.
    The good news is that I just bought a ms 361 with a 20in bar 2 chains and a 24 in bar with 1 chain out the door for $605.00 merry x mas to me. So far I have cut about 3.2 cords for next year should I leave in round in till weather breaks or split and stack now?

    I was also going to build a lean to for my wood piles I was thinking about 5 ft deep 6ft tall sloping down to 4ft or so and about 24 ft wide. I was going to leave the face open latice in the back and hardie board the side as my home owner assoc consides a wood pile to be an eye sore. I was thinking about clear poly roofing? My question is should I have my stacks from front to back north to south or east to west.
    I was thinking I should stack north to south and have the stacks 5 ft deep by log lengh so the north wind could enter thru the open face and thru the air gaps I would have in between each stack?
    I hope that makes sence

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  2. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    What kind of wood? How dry is it, how long has it seasoned and how?
  3. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    This post may have been better placed in the "hearth room" but I will have a go at it.

    First, the thermo "ranges" are designed for stove PIPE temps, not stove TOP. Go by the actual temp, not the little marks on your thermo and look in the manual for proper burning temps (if the manual states so.)

    You are engaging your cat way too soon. Your stove temp should be higher. It is possible that you have plugged the cat. Give it a good inspection and clean it as needed. From the factory, most cat stoves like a higher temp (~500f) before engaging the cat.

    How long has the wood that you are currently burning been cut, split, stacked? Unseasoned wood is one of the biggest problems in improper stove operation.

    As far as stacking wood....don't over think it. Get it cut, split, stacked asap in the most sunny and windy spot you can. Leave it for a year, then burn.

    The above is just quick generalizations, but my guess is that you are fighting unseasoned wood. If you have not done so, you should also inspect (or call a sweep) and get your stack looked at. Sounds like you might need a flue cleaning.

    And welcome to the site.

    p.s. - if you think that ms361 runs good now, wait till ya get some time on it, and it gets good and broke in---yea hawww!
  4. awoodman

    awoodman Member

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  5. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    I am burning widow maker hickory and maple also a little Willow that I use to get the fire started only had a 4 mo to season in the sun and wind.
    I have had the stack sweeped. I also will vacume the face of the cat with a soft brush attachment. I looked at my Manual and it does not give any operation temps.

    I only have maybe 3 tanks run thru it so far but it's less than a week old. I have been running 104 octane and the ultra oil should be ok ?
  6. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    I don't have a cat stove but it wouldn't hurt to try loading up with more smaller splits rather than fewer larger logs.

    That should help get you a hotter fire, our thermo is centered over the stove top door and sinks to 350 if only if we're sleeping or away...if we're in the house 350 doesn't meet our heat requirement. Temps are relative but you are correct in not being content with a 350 stove temp...imo that's a cold stove.

    All things considered you shouldn't even be burning wood in a house that nice anyway...what's the matter with you?
  7. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    4 months on hickory really isn't enough. This is more than likely the biggest part of your problems.

    I don't run the high octane stuff in my saw, thats just me. Good ol' 92 has been pumping through its veins since new. You will know when it starts to loosen up. The revs get higher and the power increases, making this a very capable and user friendly saw.
  8. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    He, he...thats funny. Hey Savage, do you use the vinegar solution to clean your cat?? If so, do you think it would be a good idea for the OP to do so?
  9. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Dunno what to do with it...we're talking Hearth Room, Wood Shed and Gear here. :-S Rick
  10. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    Jags I was telling the OP that I DON'T have a cat stove...so I wouldn't know. As far as an all purpose cleaner with anything mechanical including stoves...I always resort to compressed air first.
  11. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry Savage, I....uhhh....missed that crucial little point. I read what I wanted to read, not what your wrote. :red:
  12. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah, I can understand. I was just putting the high priority on the actual stove problems. Without the stove, the rest is moot.
  13. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    Your wood is too wet. 4 months is not enough seasoning. It will be good next year. Get new wood, you will see a big difference. Make sure it is <25% moisture content before you get it delivered.
  14. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum.

    Not sure of the cat. setup on this stove, but 350 degrees on the door means it is a lot hotter than you think. We engage the cat. at 250 degrees on the stove top. It does not always glow either but it is working nonetheless.

    On the wood, yet, get it split and stacked as soon as possible. You don't even need a shed. We've always left our wood right outdoors. We cut the wood in the winter and do the splitting in the Spring. Then it gets stacked and left uncovered until late fall or early winter. Then we cover the top only and use old steel roofing and occasionally a tarp when we run out of roofing. But when we do cover the wood, it gets covered on top only. We also prefer to be a few years ahead on our wood pile so as to be certain the wood is seasoned well. You will use much less wood and have far less problems with burning if you do this. You also won't have creosote worries.
  15. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    I cleaned the cat with a little compressed air and was out cutting all morning.
    I have been asked to build a appealing to the eye way of hiding my wood pile.
    Here is the house I don't think there will ever be a house 2 nice to have the comfort of wood suplimental heat

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  16. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    Nice house! I would build a similar style (roof pitch) detached structure in the rear of the house. Probably oposite, what looks like a garage door in the right picture.
  17. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    I was going to build back on my lot line you can see my current wood pile.
    That's why I wanted to build 24 wide x 5ft deep. I know they will want me to do some landscaping around that area to further hide.
    I think the wood pile looks great but some around here don't see things the way I do

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  18. Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle

    Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle Minister of Fire

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    Nice looking house ...but where are the trees?????
  19. Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle

    Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle Minister of Fire

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    Oh, there they are :lol:
  20. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    No tree's on my property. The tree's are community property
    I have to scrounge for my wood
  21. Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle

    Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle Minister of Fire

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    Wow.

    The wind must get brutal. No wonder the wood stove.

    Can you plant some? Wind breaks, etc?

    Just askin' :)
  22. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    all in good time
    But back there the pile gets tons of sun and wind so it's the perfect spot just need the ground to thaw so I can get the 4x 4 in the ground
  23. Shipper50

    Shipper50 Minister of Fire

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    Did you ever have a neighbor named Mr. T? ;-)

    Shipper
  24. JerseyWreckDiver

    JerseyWreckDiver New Member

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    Oh boy. I guess they have McMansion farms in Ill. too huh?
  25. d.braun.28

    d.braun.28 New Member

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    Yep
    it's ok I get crap for my house all the time
    I am 29 and build this house with my 2 hands for 86 a square a comperable home in this area is $140-150 a square
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