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saving money vs. hobby, or both ?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by adrpga498, Dec 29, 2005.

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  1. adrpga498

    adrpga498 Minister of Fire

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    I am wondering how many out there would continue to burn, process etc. if the savings factor wasn't part of the equation. Assuming that there is a savings factor as you consider your time spent on processing. I enjoy the processing and the ambience of the burn so I would classify myself as a burner hobbyiest. That being said, and trying not to be too confusing, my burn vs. using other ( oil heat ) is about 85% burn vs. 15% oil heat as "back-up" . As I said, this isn't factoring the current price of whatever you may have as a heating sourse. IF this was a survey pick 1. :

    Pretender : 0 to 25%

    Casual burner : up to 50% must be heated by wood

    Serious burner: over 75% must be heated by wood

    Pro: No other choice but to burn.


    Thank you in advance .

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  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Northern Virginia
    Serious/Pro here. Started burning casually in 1977. Went serious in 1985. Pro now because I checked this year and the heat pump had died from old age and neglect. Don't know when it happened because it has been so long since it was used.

    A fellow here named Eric has a wood pile he would like to show you. When you see it you can pick a catagory for him.
  3. Willhound

    Willhound Feeling the Heat

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    Nov 20, 2005
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    441
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    Serious. Only because I do have a NG furnace for back up, so I do have a choice, but it doesn't run anymore, except the once a week I let it start for 5 minutes just to keep things moving. It'll also run as back up if I take that winter vacation the wife is bugging me for.

    If savings weren't a consideration? I'd probabley still burn for the ambience, and we like the heat, but I doubt I would have spent the $4 G's for the insert, liner and installation. The savings are how I justified the eventual payback over the NG costs. Otherwise I would have just kept burning the drafty open fireplace for the odd wood fix.

    Willhound
  4. fespo

    fespo Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2005
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    South West burbs of Chicago
    Im a serious /Pro. The Ng has not been on for more 15 mins. this year. I have been burning since I was a kid at home. Mom & Dad had a fire place, then the next house as a kid had a fireplace,then Mom and dad had wood furance installed back in the 80s. Two chimney fires and MOM SAID NO MORE! My first home had fireplace with a blower and outside air in-take,This home had a old VC that I used for 3 years and Now a new Lopi Liberty. I just love a fire, be in the backyard firepit, camping,fireplace or woodstove with alot of glass.

    It does help that I split and sell firewood as a side line.I will send some pics once the pile is done for the year. I don't think I would burn as much if had to pay for wood. Someone had said in another post about firewood and locally owned dealers. If you know a tree service around town , You should be able to get a deal on there cut-offs, knots that wont split,wedges and pieces that are to short ect. Thats all I burn,the stuff I can't sell just to anyone, only to the serious woodburner and they love it.
  5. richg

    richg Minister of Fire

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    My company lost 300 people on 09/11. I am proud to heat my house with Yankee wood instead of terrorist oil.
  6. triage1998

    triage1998 New Member

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    20
    Loc:
    Medina, Ohio
    I'm a pretender because I have a old Majestic that is horribly inefficient . I am currently looking for a serious wood burning stove to heat my home and also for the ambiance. The wife loves a warm fire.


    Right there is a great reason to burn wood
  7. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Pro all the way. I've been heating exclusively with wood for more than 25 years. Currently heating a 3,000 square foot house in central NY state with an indoor wood-fired boiler. Refining my heating system and making it more efficient is a great hobby, but I'm not oblivious to the huge savings, either. Nor is my wife, who loves a warm house and hates utility bills. And, as a loyal and patriotic American (not like those oil barons running the government now), I heartily endorse richg's point about foreign oil and the bunch of jokers (foreign and domestic) who control it.

    fespro: It's the firewood dealer's lot to get stuck burning all the odds and ends that won't sell.

    BrotherBart: The pile is shrinking a lot more slowly compared to last year, which was the first season we ran the new boiler set-up. Last year it was: Let's just get through this winter without burning any gas and worry about efficiency next season. This winter I've made some major gains in efficiency and a lot of tinkering around and refining things. I may well still have a year's worth of wood when this one is all said and done. Now I'm sweating out next summer, i.e., less wood to cut. WhatamIgonnadoforfun? Paint the house, I guess.
  8. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    23 cords split and stacked and "I may well still have a year's worth of wood when this one is all said and done.". That is five or six years worth around here. I have the opposite problem next year though. Still 35 trees down out front and I have got to get them done. Plus finally lining that old chimney and redoing the crown. Anybody know where I can get a surplus circus net?

    Getting too old for this stuff. I hope the rest home has good heat.
  9. zogboy

    zogboy New Member

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    Eric ;
    What type of boiler do you have?
    Where did you buy it ?
    I am very interested in coal or wood for my boiler.
    I am in cny too and don't want to keep paying oil thugs either.
  10. Sandor

    Sandor Minister of Fire

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    Talk about a rhetorical question.

    "As I said, this isn’t factoring the current price of whatever you may have as a heating sourse. "

    I don't think I'm the only one that has convinced themselves that cutting wood, the exercise that goes along with it and limited energy independence is actually fun and worth the labor.

    Talk about mental masterbation.
  11. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

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    Pro. Would I heat with wood if there was no savings? No way. Even though I really do enjoy the cutting, splitting, hauling, stacking, cleaning chimney, etc., etc., I have a fire pit in the yard for "pleasure" burning. Of course, it's under the snow right now.
  12. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Zogboy,

    I have an old Royall 150,000 btu boiler that I picked up on Ebay a couple of years ago. It's installed in my barn and piped into the basement where a heat exchanger heats water that goes into a gas boiler vessel. It also heats all our domestic hot water. The gas is a backup, but I have it turned off. Good for vacations and taking the chill off in the early fall and late spring. I'm in Clinton.
  13. Corey

    Corey Minister of Fire

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    Put me in the serious burner category...although I keep the 1600sf ranch plus additional 1600sf basement warm with careful use of 2 - 2-1/2 cords of wood annually. I guess you could say that I burn a lot although I don't "burn" a lot.

    If the savings were to go away (assuming natural gas somehow became so cheap that it cost the same as wood) I would probably still burn, but more for fun than necessity. If the savings were to vanish (assuming I had to pay as much for wood as I do for gas) I would probably quit wood burning...it is nice, but I would't pay a huge sum just to have a fire going every day.

    Corey
  14. Rick

    Rick Member

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    Loc:
    Connecticut
    I guess I'm serious. When I started heating with wood my oil bill for the whole year (including hot water) was only about $600. I spent double that on the stove and chimney. That was a long time ago. I only heat half my home with wood but 100% of the room we spend the most time in. I would do this even if oil was cheap again. When oil was around a dollar a gallon I figured that If I added up all the time I spent for the stove; i could've gotten a part time job and come out way ahead money-wise. But I still did it.

    Rick
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