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starting fire with propane torch

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by RustyShackleford, Sep 17, 2009.

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  1. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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    Watching a friend start a fireplace fire with a propane torch years ago,
    I started lighting my wood stove the same way. One of those handheld
    torches with an auto-on trigger.

    Is there some reason this is a bad idea ? I assume the gas in the bottle
    has no impurities that would poison the catalyst. Of course, I'm careful
    not to let the hot flame touch any parts of the stove itself, especially
    glass.

    It gets the fire going a lot quicker, and saves on kindling and newspaper.

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  2. cmonSTART

    cmonSTART Minister of Fire

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    I do it sometimes and I'm proud of it!

    BTW, MAPP gas works better.
  3. KeepItNatural

    KeepItNatural New Member

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    I suppose to each their own, but I like using just one match and seeing if I can get the fire going.
    For me its kind of fun to have an elaborate process to get a fire going with as little input as possible and take the time to get my fire going- but that's just me... I'm a little weird.
  4. fbelec

    fbelec Minister of Fire

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    ya but it smells awful when the torch doesn't light right away
  5. grommal

    grommal Feeling the Heat

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    Did this for many years with a cat stove, and never had a problem. There's nothing in propane or its combustion products that would poison the catalyst. I usually started a fire with a regular long-nosed lighter, but whenever I used a torch to preheat the flue if the draft was bad, I just went ahead and lit the fire before extinguishing the torch.
  6. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    I used to use all sorts of stuff to start fires in stoves. Then Vanessa showed me the light. Literally. ;-)
  7. Ratman

    Ratman Feeling the Heat

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    Right on BigBrotherB, right on.
    She has changed my life.

    Whats Big V going to do when the newspaper companies all go paperless?
    Hmmm....Maybe she'll shave-up some poplar tinder.
    Oh wait... That's my idea.
    Duh!
  8. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    She will probably retire and burn natural gas. She has been the owner of the Embers hearth shop in Perth, Ontario for over twenty years and now also has a stove distribution company there. She can just kick back and hit the remote on the gas stove. She can afford it. ;-)
  9. summit

    summit Minister of Fire

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    sometimes i soak a piece of rag in some k-1... gets 'er goin every time..
  10. afblue

    afblue Feeling the Heat

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    I guess I am just going to state the obvious. Get the torch lit before you put it inside the door opening. Worse thing that could happen is you are striking whatever to get torch lit and fill the stove with gas and POOOOOFFFFFF, there goes any facial hair you may have. :snake:
  11. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    little tip when torch lighting, before you aim at the base of the fuel , aim the torch up the flue for a minute to dump some heat into the chimney to help it start pulling a bit harder, helps reduce the smoke through the doorway before the wood gets going good.


    BTW not to hijack , but has anyone tried an electric grill starter element to start a fire in a stove? i havent but would love to hear any input.
  12. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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    Good thought, but like I said, I am using the auto-trigger type (you just pull a
    trigger and it starts the gas flow and lights it simultaneously).
  13. shawng111

    shawng111 Member

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    Yep, +1 for Vanessa
  14. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    I use MAPP gas.
  15. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Same here . . . then again I often start my fire the old school way as well . . . although if I must confess the last two fires have been top down fires.
  16. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    I still do it the old way with newspaper and kindling. There are a few time when we do use some firestarter but have never used a torch.
  17. TreePapa

    TreePapa Minister of Fire

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    Sounds sort of like shooting a flea with a gun.

    Peace,
    - Sequoia
  18. fbelec

    fbelec Minister of Fire

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    i use those long lighters. you know the one's that don't work right after the second time you leave em on for more than 30 seconds. thats for my upstairs stove and a top down burn with 100 year old wood lath, but i do use a torch down in the basement stove. i rake the ashes into the ash pan but leave the left over coals and put them in a pile then bring out the torch. hit them for about 30 seconds close up the stove except the ash door and after 3 minutes nice bed of blue flaming coals.
  19. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    So you finally bought a wood stove?
  20. fbelec

    fbelec Minister of Fire

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  21. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    He could use a few more combustible items around that stove. Especially that bottle of propane sitting right next to it. :ahhh:
  22. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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    Wow, this isn't quite what I do. I lay a fire as normal, but maybe not as
    much paper and smaller kindling. Then I cook the largest kindling with the
    torch, trying not to light the paper. When the kindling starts smoking, THEN
    I light the paper. So the paper is more creating a draft that makes the
    kindling burn, but hopefully the torching has already heated the kindling to
    near the ignition point.

    Total time I run the torch is MAYBE 1 minute.
  23. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    Last I checked mapp is ten bucks a tank. Used newspaper is free. Must be nice.
  24. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    And setting the Washington Post on fire is one of the few simple pleasures left in my life. :coolgrin:
  25. fbelec

    fbelec Minister of Fire

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    that's for sure. he must not run it to hot. he had a nice layer of black on the glass.
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