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Tell me about the Spectrum

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by jeff_t, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    This came up the other day http://annarbor.craigslist.org/for/3560631886.html

    We bought a vacation home last weekend, and it has no stove. It's about 1350 sq ft, plus an enclosed and insulated breezeway. It has an LP furnace, so the stove wouldn't be carrying the whole load when heating the place up from really cold. It might get used a half dozen times in the winter.

    I was going to wait and pick up a 30 in the spring, if they go for cheap, but this seems like a good buy. Will it be enough? What should I look for with a used PE?

    This is a pic of the place. It has been added onto a couple of times, but it is pretty open. The stove will go where the brick chimney is, but with new class A thru the roof.


    2013-01-19_16-11-59_811.jpg

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  2. fredarm

    fredarm Minister of Fire

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    That seems like a great deal if it's in good shape. I think it should be plenty big for supplemental heat for that place. Check for signs of over-firing (a whitish color on the metal), check the welds and around the door for cracks (has been a problem on some PE's, more so on the Summit), and make sure the baffle (the thing at the top with the holes in it) isn't cracked or sagging too much (they all sag a bit after a while from the heat). PE's are great stoves and very easy to run (more so than the 30 from what I've heard). The metal baffle instead of burn tubes and ceramic boards means you're less likely to cause damage if you happen to hit the top of the stove with a split. I've had my Vista insert since 2008 and never had a problem with it.

    I'm sure others, including some Spectrum owners, will be along shortly to chime in, but that's my take on this stove.
  3. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    I like the PE design. I've had my head in a Summit and T6 that had some use.

    I fired off an email already. I'll be checking it out in the next day or two.
  4. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Go for it, quickly. That's a great deal. Snooze you lose. (though make sure it has a baffle inside. :))
  5. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    If I had seen it Monday, I would probably already have it. Unfortunately, I'm a couple hundred miles from home at the moment. He still has it, trying to arrange a meeting.

    That's the first PE I have ever seen on craigslist here.
  6. fox9988

    fox9988 Minister of Fire

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    I'd be all over that.
  7. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    That is one hell of a clean looking stove from that pic, and at $350.00, that is a no brainer. Pipe looks unlike any I have even seen.
  8. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Jump on it...BTW...where is the vacation home?
  9. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    It's about an hour SE of Mackinac City, about 100 yds from the beach on Lake Huron. 'Beach access' ;)

    Going this evening or tomorrow evening to check it out. He said he has somebody coming Saturday 'FYI', but if it is any good it won't be there.
  10. Huntindog1

    Huntindog1 Minister of Fire

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    For sure go tonight and buy that thing!!
  11. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    It is in my possession.
    PA Fire Bug, PapaDave and fox9988 like this.
  12. fredarm

    fredarm Minister of Fire

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    Congratulations! A great deal on a good stove.
  13. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    This thing is super clean. Baffle looks great, no broken bricks, no rust, glass is clear, no creosote buildup inside. There is ash still in the bottom, but no charcoal, so somebody must have known what they were doing.

    It was a new homeowner, and the stove came with the house. He had never used a stove, and the insurance company wanted no part of it. It was in the basement, and there is no way any stove could heat that house from the basement. He thought the previous owner may have had a workshop or studio in the basement, and the stove only saw occasional use. He said that $350 must be a good price, because he has a lot of responses :rolleyes: I saw no reason to bargain, and gave him $350.

    Three questions. How do I get the baffle out? Is the manual available from PE's website? And the door handle is sloppy. Easy fix?

    Inside pic. Too dark in the back of my Excursion for the rest.

    2013-01-24_21-32-00_890.jpg

    Sure is cramped in there.
    BrowningBAR likes this.
  14. fox9988

    fox9988 Minister of Fire

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    His lose, your gain. I would have found a new insurance company. When I find a Great deal, I don't haggle either. The seller gets what he ask and I get a good nights sleep.
    jeff_t likes this.
  15. Premier Fireplace MI

    Premier Fireplace MI New Member

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    That is a Very nice looking stove. The baffle should slide forward there will be a pin holding it in the back.

    Remove the Pin, then slide the baffle forward, when it gets towards the front you need to just tilt it down and it should come right out. I have been selling and installing there products for the last 3 years and I have sold and Installed most major brands. It is hands down the best burning stoves and Inserts on the market. You got a steal on that thing you have to love Craigslist.
    jeff_t likes this.
  16. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Woohoo! I was concerned at that price that he might have already sold it. Gotta be the steal deal of the year. I'm happy for you man.

    The manual is online on PE's website. The baffle comes out as described. But be prepared that it is going to be heavier than it looks. If you pull the baffle you should replace the gasket on the secondary feed tube that inserts into the back of the baffle. The door handle is a simple v notch slot. You can very gently tap on the top of the V to close the gap very slightly. A little tap is usually all it will need.

    My only concern here is that short chimney, or is that for the propane furnace? Are you going to install a new chimney for the stove?
    jeff_t likes this.
  17. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    Oh man, you HIT! !!! Looking forward to more pics.
    bg, he said new chimney...
    jeff_t likes this.
  18. PapaDave

    PapaDave Minister of Fire

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    Well, Jeff strikes again.
    Great deal Jeff. That'll be nice in the new house.
    Good job snatching it up at that price.
    jeff_t likes this.
  19. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Yah, that part confuses me. I'm not sure what purpose the brick chimney serves or whether he will have the height needed yet. Even with a new chimney that looks like a low roof.
  20. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    Nice job, can't wait until we get reports about that thing when it's up-n-running! :)
    jeff_t likes this.
  21. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    It confuses me, too. There is a too small tile hearth right there, and a brick facing on the wall. There is no hole thru the brick, but there is a ceiling support above. I think they covered the hole when they put the new metal roof on a few years ago. My other thought is to take all that stuff out, and put the stove on the opposite side of the room, in a corner near the other roof line. That would give me a good place to anchor a roof brace for more height.

    The door latch is fine, and seems pretty tight. It is the handle itself that is loose in the door. This stove was built in '95. Almost 18 years old, and in this condition ==c

    Is the gasket on the secondary feed tube anything special? I assume that is the tube between the bricks in the back.

    I found the manual in the PE archives.

    2013-01-25_08-32-41_363.jpg 2013-01-25_08-46-57_535.jpg
  22. farmer

    farmer New Member

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    That stove looks perfect for its age.Glad you made it there before someone else did.We all look on craiglist for deals like that but hardly ever see them.Seems like you can always enjoy somethig like that more when it is a deal.
  23. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    A little wobble there is ok. Our stove handle can wiggle if not engaged. I think Tom Oyen (thechimneysweep) is burning in a Spectrum of that vintage. He may have a suggestion for whether it needs tightening or not.
  24. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    Well, we got here about 11 last night, and it was 58° inside. Not very chilly outside, maybe low 50s, but I finally got a chance to build a fire.

    Filled it with ash splits, and a little kindling on top. About 10 minutes in and I was cutting the air back. About 12:30, I put a 4-5" round on top and watched it for a while. Nice floating flames, and the temp peaked about 600° with the air closed all the way. Got up at 8:30, and it was full of coals, and about 300°, just perfect. Right now, 18 hours later, the stove is warm to the touch, and there are more than enough coals to light another load. Unfortunately (?), it is 75° and sunny, so that is unlikely.

    I'm not sure how it will do in the dead of winter, when this place is 20° inside when we arrive, but it will sure take a load off the furnace. Totally tickled with this 2cu ft PE.

    CAM00091.jpg
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013
    chvymn99 and PapaDave like this.
  25. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    The Spectrum is a very good shoulder season burner. My next door neighbor experiences the same thing with his stove. In winter you'll be pushing it a lot harder of course and burn times will go down. But it will stand and deliver the heat if asked. You will still need the furnace to help bring the mass of the the cabin up to temp from 20F, unless you don't mind being cold for several hours. It takes a lot of btus to warm up a stone cold interior.

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