I loaded the Vig around 1800 last night. A couple of big Pine Splits, topped with three medium sized oak splits. Laid a N/S layer of small oak and pine splits and topped that with a handful of my homemade cedar starter sticks and four or five knots of the Houston Chronicle. I lit the newspaper and closed the door until the open latch stopped it from closing all the way. All the wood in the stove and on my porch at the moment tested at less than 10% MC on fresh splits! Within about four minutes I had a roaring fire. Ten minutes later I'm looking at 600 degrees on the stove top so I put it on horizontal and shut the thermostat down and leave for choir practice at church. Around 2200 I have some great coals. I pack the stove with a little more pine but mostly big splits of oak and fill in the gaps with some six inch chunks of pin oak. Now it's really solidly packed. I let the fire kick up until all the wood is scorched and glowing. Stove top is a little over 600 again. I shut all the air down for the night around 1030. I was amazed to walk into the living room this morning at 0715 and find the stove top a little over 500 degrees with a large amount of big, almost solid coals still flaming away. I've never had an overnight like that before. At 1030 this morning the stove top was still 425 with some great coals. At 1300 it was showing 300. No wood has been added since 2200 last night. I attribute this totally to having some great wood. Now that I'm three years ahead, with more wood to come soon, I'm looking forward to the winter.