For the last two years I've used a stove thermometer to get some idea of how hot my stove is. Stove thermometers are designed to hang in the stove, or my smoker, and take the air temperature. They were not designed for taking the temperature of wood stoves. Since joining Hearth.com I've been reading about everyone's stove temps and wondering why my stove never got that hot. When my thermometer read 400 it smelled like the house was going to burn down. Then I realized you all were using the magnetic surface thermometer. I bought one yesterday and discovered that the stove thermometer reads exactly one half what the magnetic surface thermometer reads. No wonder 400 seemed hot, it was actually 800 degrees! Measure twice, cut once. The job will always take longer than you think. And always use the right tool for the job. Damned if dad wasn't right.