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Vermont Castings Aspen vs Jotul 602

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by neumsky, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    Ya...I'm starting to think I am looking at the F118 Black Bear.

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  2. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

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    It's says it's quite a heater,i was surprised.
  3. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    @ Bub381...which one...the Black Bear or the 602!? I can say this...from the experiences of my lifetime...the number one stove did'nt get there on a whim. It's a smidgen small for my application...I'm thinking seriously on the Black Bear...the Big Brother to the number one stove in the world!
  4. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

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    I haven't read much on the 602,i really can't say.A dealer will help you in this case and you also want to look each stove over,inside and out before you buy.
  5. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

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    Just looked,is the 602 the Aspen.The dealer here told me they wont draft.I looked at the Morso squirrel and have you looked at the height of the firebox at the back.YIKES! A 1 room heater maybe.Look on Jotul.com and look at their small stoves.How easy will a 118 load if you have a log already in there and you want to load for the night.I know they will take a long log and i know we like to burn to coaling stage before we reload but it doesn't always happen that way.You go to the showroom and look em over good.Take a list with you of what you want in a stove.Some features you may compromise for a different 1 in a different stove but take a list.We forget when we get to looking these beauties over.Sorry i can't be of more help.Ask LOTS of questions,if they sound stupid imagine how we'll feel with this kind of money in a stove that doesn't meet our expectations.Any questions keep asking before you make your mind up.That's y we're here.Well that and to brag some.lol As they say,buy bigger because you can build a small fire in a big stove but you can't build a big 1 in a small stove.
  6. fishingpol

    fishingpol Minister of Fire

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    The 602 comes in at 28,000 BTU's and heats up to an 800 sq ft room. The F118 comes in around 60,000 BTU's and heats 1,800 sq ft. It is twice the stove as the 602. It seems to be quite a jump up in size.
  7. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    fishingpol...BTW...love the name... I know that it's quite a jump but...the dealers said that you can build what size fire you want in it. I'm still not excluding the idea of the 602 as it is only for supplemental heat & just in case we lose power to hold us over till we get power back. The other stoves for the Jotul line don't seem quite as quality to me as I eyeballed them yesterday. These Box stoves are the bomb! @Bub381 just curious how you got that name... you hit the nail on the head... you can build a smaller fire in the bigger stove. Thanx Jeff
  8. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    In new, small box stoves my preference is the Morso 2B. In small Jotuls I'd look at the F100.
  9. fishingpol

    fishingpol Minister of Fire

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    Thanks on the avatar name. I like to go fishing and I am part Polish. Dropping the "e" off the end was intentional.

    I first owned the Aspen, I think it was around 28,000 btu's. I went to the Jotul F-100 which was around 35,000 btu's. I now have the Jotul F3 and it is around 42,000 btu's I can tell you that I can tell the difference between 35 and 42 is quite a difference. I would ask others to chime in here about making a small fire in a big stove, if you will get a different range of heat. I guess what you need to determine is how much time is spent in the room and are you trying to move heat into other rooms. There are so many variables here. Many here can help you. The price difference is pretty substantial I would imagine. If I was to spend a lot of time in a room with a 118 running, yeah, a small load of wood would be in order. On a full load dry eyeballs will be happening.
  10. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    Chris...please don't appologize...stop in any time. I implore you!
  11. precaud

    precaud Minister of Fire

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    neumsky, do yourself a favor... don't get sucked into the box stove mystique... there are good fundamental reasons why new box stoves aren't being developed any more.
  12. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    @ Precaud...or anyone...Well the box stove mentality still have the reburn capabilities...otherwise they would'nt be called Clean Burn technology. These boxes still have a efficiency rating of over 75%. I would be very happy with that....I'm not sure what your saying or referring to when you say box stove mystique! Please help me out with that one. Jeff
  13. precaud

    precaud Minister of Fire

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    Jeff, you're new here... welcome. I'm trying to give you the benefit of my past experience with these stoves without launching into a long technical discussion. "Reburn"... "Clean burn technology"... "efficiency rating"... these are all marketing terms/claims, and not real performance measures that can be directly compared from one stove to another, let alone one brand to another. All modern stoves have them, but they are not all the same from one stove to the next. And they aren't what a noobie should be paying the most attention to in selecting an EPA stove for the first time. The most important is getting the right size firebox for the space you want to heat.

    The long/narrow cast iron box-style stoves are designs from a different era of wood burning, when the priorities were different. "Clean burn technology" has been cobbled into them to get them to pass current EPA specs (they won't pass the next phase), yes some work better than others, but that doesn't mean they are an optimum solution. It would be like taking a car from 30 years ago, adding modern pollution controls to it, and expecting it to perform like a modern car. Ain't gonna happen. It will still guzzle gas and drive like a boat. In the real world, I'd say you will give up 10-15% or more overall efficiency compared to a more modern-designed stove.

    Of the box stoves, the F118 and Aspen have significant shortcomings and known issues. Use the search function of this website and read the experience of prior owners. The F602 and Morso 2B are better designs, if they are the right size for your needs. But more modern designs will outperform any of them. Why must you have a box stove?
  14. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

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    Bub is my nickname and the 381 was added when i wanted to register on a site.The idea of building a small fire in a big stovecame fr om the stove shop and from several people on here.It wasn't my idea but it makes sense.There will be differences yes but it sure will be hard to heat with too small of a stove.Another thing i read was find your sq footage and add 300 ft but it depends on your zone.Just lay back and take it all in but do your own research,read stove reviews also.
  15. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    The problem with larger stoves is they take a while to heat up, even with a good fire. If you build a small fire in them it could take much longer than you think it would. If a small heater fits the bill, I wouldn't go for one too much larger.
  16. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

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    No i wouldn't go too much.About like going from a 100 to a Castine
  17. fraxinus

    fraxinus Feeling the Heat

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    Casting parts (which may or may not involve identical raw materials) is a crucial first step in making any stove. It is, however, far from the only consideration. The stove design, ease of operation, quality control at the assembly stage, manufacturer's warranty, dealer support network, and a number of other factors are even more important than who makes the raw castings. The original Vermont Castings company had few peers in creating high quality wood stoves. After two (?) bankruptcies and the recent takeover by the Moessen company, a prudent stove buyer would adopt a wait and see attitude toward VC stoves.

    Just to clarify, Jotul North America's headquarters and factory are located in Gorham, Maine. A very large number of stoves is built there - the new Rangely was also developed there - while some models continue to be made in Norway and shipped to the US.
  18. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    @ Precaud...thank you for the welcome... I like being here with all you Pyro's haha. Starting off I would like to know what you mean by the F118 & Aspen having significant shortcomings. But the 602 does not. Their all box stoves. As a matter of fact if you take the glass door on your stove and move it to the side...you would now have a box stove. I even went and compared alot of these so called box stoves with the other so called modern boxes and really see no significant difference. They all have a method of reburning in a BOX & send it out a tube into the sky. I can understand that there are differences because I have been dealing with aerodynamic energy for 33+ years for a profession. But there all still boxes. I have an open ear for the opinions on the SIGNIFICANT differences. This box is almost identical to the 602 and you said IT is a much better design. The 118 has been around probably longer than just about anything out there and that in itself says something about it. I like the looks of it. I think the industry has gone to moving the door to the other side is so it does'nt stick out into the room as much. I'm old fashioned, I guess. I am not upset if it seems like I am. I am getting ready to lay down some money on this BOX and don't want to if you know there really is something significantly wrong with the 118. Some people have chimed in thinking I want this for the purpose heating 2200 ft of home. Goes to show people don't read everything. I want this only for supplemental heat and if we lose power I want it in case just to keep the pipes from freezing. I do have a generator. Thanx Jeff BTW...I don't think they can say if it's 75% efficient...it better be or else it's false advertising. I do believe there is not too many people out there that can really tell how efficient their stoves really are! How do you tell? Do you stand out there with some kind of laser gun & measure the smoke? I know the manufactures have some kind of method...but do we as a consumer? Please respond soon??? Thanx again Jeff
  19. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I can see this devolving into semantics. Sure all woodstoves are boxes (or cylinders) so is a car by that definition. In woodstoves though, it is not the same thing. A box stove is defined by it's shape. That is a stove that is much deeper than wide with a long rectangular firebox. There are only a handful of box stoves currently sold on the market. And only four that I know of that are EPA approved. Of the 4 the Morso 2B is probably the most successful design.
  20. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    BeGreen...I want to know why you think that boxes are more square than rectangular as far as them not being as good of a wood stove. Semantic that haha. Why is the morso the best out of the 4? Dont' let me buy this thing if it is in fact a problem child. Please! I'm not so sure I like the word devolving either. Thats like saying there is no such thing as a dumb question. But...
  21. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Precaud already covered this. It's hard to get a clean burn that will meet EPA requirements in this configuration. Morso has done the best job so far. Their design is reliable and it's size is nice, taking a bit more wood in the firebox than the F602CB. The F602CB is not a bad little stove, but the firebox is small. We have a neighbor that has been heating their small place with one for a few years now and they still like it, but this is the first and only stove they've owned.

    As far as the stoves I have owned, after close to 40 yrs of burning, circumstances change with different homes and locations. Our F602 came with the house, but was undersized. Then our needs completely changed post remodel in 2006. I also have a partner that was more focused on show than go, thus the Castine. It was only after an 8 day power outage in a cold winter that she conceded to a bigger stove for longer burn times. This coincided with Tom making me an offer I couldn't refuse. No regrets. Besides, I like testing new stoves. If I lived alone I would probably change them out every couple years just so I could experience the differences.
  22. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    Ok...still want to know your experience or someone elses experience with the new 118's. before I spend the coin on one. Did look up the Morso and did not find alot of info on it... do appreciate it tho.
  23. precaud

    precaud Minister of Fire

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    Jeff, first, the "new 118" is not a 118, it is an F118. Please don't confuse the two by calling them the same thing, they are different critters entirely.

    Second, if you're really serious about knowing the experience of others with the F118, do as we have suggested and USE THE SEARCH FUNCTION for "F118". You'll find much has been written over several years by people with real-world experience with it, including me, as well as some comparisons to the 118. After you've done that, if you still have questions, come back and we'll talk.

    Third, if, as you say, "they're all box stoves" i.e. all the same, then you don't need further info - just go buy one and be done with it.

    And lastly, as I asked before, why are you only looking at box stoves?
  24. neumsky

    neumsky Minister of Fire

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    @ Precaud...as I stated before... I like the looks... and I already did what you suggested and can't find much on it... Must be a good stove than??? It's been around a long time...yes I'm curious as to why they appended the F to the 118. So I'm starting to think you guys are talking about something you do not have any experience with than?
  25. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I haven't owned one. But it was my first choice to replace the 602. This was before this current forum, back when it was a BBS. Unfortunately those threads are long gone I think. As I researched the F118CB I chatted with a couple owners. Unfortunately they were less than satisfied with the burn and reported warping secondary racks and run arounds with the dealers claiming they had overfired the stove. Agreed the data sample for the stove is small, I don't think it is a big seller. Anyhow, long story short for me was that I changed stove selection rather than experimenting with the stove. If you get one, great. That will be another data point if you would follow through with impressions on an annual basis.

    Here's some good threads discussing the stove:
    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/23539/
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/woodheat/message/9298

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