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Stove recommendations for 950 sq. ft. cabin

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Felix, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. Felix

    Felix New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Western NC
    Hey everybody,

    I'm a new member. I've been reading threads from this community for the last year or so, but haven't needed tailored advice until now.

    I live full-time in Western NC in a 950 square foot cabin and use wood heat exclusively. The cabin is relatively modern construction, has modern middle-of-the-road windows, and is insulated to spec (but not beyond).

    The stove that came with it, which is located centrally in a living room, is a Buck Stove 74. It works great - fires right up, stays hot - no problems there. However, it's too much stove for the space - it heats us out of the house even when we burn a log or two at a time, and the burn time is terrible b/c we can't stock the box without making the house intolerably hot. There is very little climate control available with the stove as far as I can tell, particularly in our small space, and I'm making a new fire every morning. We burn a mixture of hardwoods, but by far the most prevalent type of tree on my property is locust, so it will most likely always be in the mix, which contributes to the heat issue, I know.

    I'm looking for a replacement that is more suited for my needs. I've had my eye on Vermont Castings cat stoves - namely the Intrepid II or the Encore. The Encore appears to be too large for my space, but the longer burn time is really appealing. I'd like to be able to keep a low fire going overnight or if I'm out for the day.

    I was hoping someone here could speak to the appropriateness of those stoves to my space and/or make other recommendations.

    Thanks in advance.

    Felix

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    49,648
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Take a look at Woodstock stoves. The Keystone is right-sized for this size and will do a long, low burn. There is also the Blaze King Sirocco or Chinook 20. In your area you might also consider a Buck 20 catalytic stove, especially if the dealer will give you a fair trade in for the 74.
  3. eclecticcottage

    eclecticcottage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,716
    Loc:
    WNY
    +2 on Woodstock or BK stoves. Our stove is WAY oversized for our space but we're poorly insulated and ok with smaller shorter shoulder season fires. If the Scirroco was around when we bought our stove (and I'd heard of BK) we would very likely have that stove instead of the Republic. I do like the bigger firebox for the longer burns and greater loading choices (especially since we scrounge all of our wood, sometimes you get a 19" piece and cutting it in half created stupid sized pieces-it'll fit corner to corner in this stove).
  4. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Messages:
    27,815
    Loc:
    Michigan
    One of the nicest things you would like with a Woodstock stove is the difference in heat. They speak of a "soft heat" with the soapstone stove and I never understood it at all. After all, heat is heat. However, when we bought a Woodstock Fireview we found out what this soft heat was like and love it. The best way to describe the difference is with steel or cast the heat can feel harsh. Especially when the stove is burning hot, you stand back from most stoves. Not so with soapstone as you can be right next to it.

    Definitely the Keystone would be better for your situation as the Fireview would probably be too much stove for you.

    I might add that although Woodstock sells direct only, do not let that bother you. Their customer service is second to none. In addition, they will give you a guarantee that is simply amazing! Try it 6 months and if not satisfied, full refund of your dollars!

    Good luck.
    raybonz likes this.
  5. Felix

    Felix New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Western NC
    Thanks so much for the suggestions - none of these stoves were on my radar, and they look like they might be perfect. I'm not sure the Woodstock stoves work with our modern learnings stylistically, though I'm intrigued by what you are saying about the quality of the heat, and I will give them a call next week. As for Blaze King, I'm trying to figure out who my dealer is (the address listed on their site is a warehouse, so I'm trying to see if the dealer who sold me my Jotul stove in the barn can get me one)...The Chinook 20 looks like it may be a perfect fit for us.

    Thanks again. I'll let you know where I end up once I get there....
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  6. dorkweed

    dorkweed Guest

    For the space you have, the Englander 13NC would be perfect.

    You just need to build/have the hearth R value requirements for the 13 though.

    Otherwise, the 13 is a serious heating machine!!! My house is 1100sq.ft., and the 13 (with a fan) heats my house so far in this mostly mild fall!!!
  7. evilgriff

    evilgriff Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    138
    Loc:
    Northern New Jersey
    Can't speak for the other stoves, but I moved up from a VC Intrepid II to a BK Sirocco. I enjoyed the VC for many years, but the BK is light years ahead of the VC. Labor is the biggest difference. Going down to tonight in NJ- I throw 3-4 splits in the BK, get her turned down and I am done for the next 12hrs. The Intrepid needed much more attention, and I almost always woke up in a cold house when the fire went out. My house is the same size as the area you would like to heat. It's not as pretty, glass gets a little dirty, but the chimney shows no smoke when that cat is engaged. Plus I NEVER, and I mean NEVER have had to ask the wife to touch anything on this stove which was pure grief with the Intrepid. I am not getting 20 hr burns, probably as I am not even attempting them- but I can tell you it could be done. No doubt in my mind I made the right decision, function over looks for me. Something that holds true with woodstoves and women. Knowing what I know now I would marry a BK long before an Intrepid.
  8. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    My Woodstock Keystone is a perfect fit for my 1000 sq ft main floor. It has real good control and can be turned down for a long 12 hour low BTU output that doesn't blast you out of the stove room. I think the BK Sirocco or Chinook would also be a great fit since they can be turned down even further for a lower output and even longer burn.
  9. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    7,607
    Loc:
    Doylestown, PA
    I think the 13 would be to harsh for his set up. He needs a more controllable stove. The 13 is a nice stove, but there is more of a chance that the 13 will give him the same problem that he has with the Buck 74 while also giving him shorter burn times.
  10. Felix

    Felix New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Western NC
    I've talked to a dealer here now, and he seems to think the Blaze King Sirocco is a good fit for us. The only other stove he's recommended that seems like a contender at this point is the mid-size Dutchwest, though what I'm reading here and elsewhere suggests the Blaze King is probably a better suited stove for our space...
  11. blades

    blades Minister of Fire

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    Nov 23, 2008
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    Loc:
    WI, Milw
    Hard to beat a cat stove for longer heating cycles, especially in the smaller stoves.

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