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What length do you cut your splits to?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by EatenByLimestone, Nov 5, 2006.

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  1. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    Compared to the size log your stove will take, how long do you cut your wood?

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  2. ChrisN

    ChrisN Feeling the Heat

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    I think my stove takes up to 22". I try to cut mine at least 18" but like to keep it no more than 20".
  3. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    Stove will take 20" as loading front to back , I normally cut 16"- 14" so there is a lot of room for the coal pile to be heaped at the front and its eaiser to handle.
  4. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    My max length is 18", but I try to cut them 16". I think it's best to cut a couple inches less than your max log length. Otherwise you end up with a few that are too long, unless you get the tape measure out for every cut.
  5. DriftWood

    DriftWood Minister of Fire

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    My stove takes 21 inch logs. Bigger splits last longer. I mark the long pieces at 20 inches, if the cut is off + or - it will still fit. I will cut by eye in half most small stuff. Big but short lengths are cut off short at one end at 20 inches.
  6. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    Mine will take up to 24", and I generally cut between 20 and 24. I figure anything less is wasting volume in the firebox. If it will take 24, and you give put in a 16, you probably can;t fill the rest of the length that log could have been.

    Steve
  7. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    So you guys that are cutting max length in order to get more wood in the fire box , are you filling / packing the fire box ?
  8. PAJerry

    PAJerry Member

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    Mine will take 18" according to the manual but I'm going to cut them back to 14" next year. 18 will fit with some effort but then the firebox is packed too tight to really burn well. Smaller splits can be offset and angled a bit to allow better air flow and a hotter burn, which is pretty important with a smaller stove like mine. I'm considering buying a load of bark-free slabs, cut to 14" lengths, from a local mill for next year. The stuff is half the cost of cord wood and should work well in the Vista mixed with reqular splits that I can cut from my woods.
  9. suematteva

    suematteva New Member

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    Max on the mansfield is 21", average length now is 17-18, was cutting around 19-20" but it could get kinda tight due to leaving big diameter...
  10. ourhouse

    ourhouse Minister of Fire

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    My stove is 22-22 I cut my wood at 16"-18" long
  11. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

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    I cut the trees into 16 inch rounds. The firebox on my stove is 28 inches wide, so will take much larger if needed. 16 to 18 inch splits fit into my smallest trailer nicely. And, by cutting it 16 inches, a face cord equals one third of a full cord. (in case I should ever sell some)
  12. jabush

    jabush Feeling the Heat

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    Stove takes a 24" split. I cut my stuff around 18-20", which gives me a few inches of wiggle room in front and behind the load.

    I figure anything shorter than 18" and I'm not taking advantage of the firebox volume. Of course I would never "poo-poo" shorter rounds on the scrounge, but if I have my choice it's 18-20".
  13. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    Yes, I pack the box pretty tight for the night. After 8 hrs I have enough to start easily the next morning.

    Steve
  14. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    I have always cut mine at twenty. The scientific reason being that the bar on my saw is 20" long and so it makes a good ruler that just happens to be in my hand at the time. And the old stove would handle up to 24".

    New stove is only going to handle 20" max which means I am probably going to have to whack the whole pile to 18" as I bring the wood into the house this year.
  15. laynes69

    laynes69 Minister of Fire

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    I think my furnace accepts 24" logs, I cut mine at 20". If they are shorter pieces, I'll burn then durning the day and burn the longer pieces at night. I used to stuff my furnace for nighttime. Since I rebuilt mine, I can load about 2/3 or less of the wood I did last year and it burns longer and hotter. Then again I burn locust for nighttime.
  16. glassmanjpf

    glassmanjpf Member

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    My stove takes max of 20 inch. I cut all my splits at 18 inches leaves a little room for error. Makes for easy stacking.
  17. wahoowad

    wahoowad Minister of Fire

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    My stove takes up an 18" log. I try to cut at 17" (I use a guide and mark my logs) to get as much log/fuel in the firebox.
  18. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    This is what i do.

    #1 Cut the log a bit shorter as so to have room for the coal bed in front and put the logs towards the back. 2-3 splits is all thats is needed above 25° and highs back up to 50°-60°

    #2 When it gets colder than 25° at night and highs only 30° i will bring the coal bed to the front as before but put logs in the back and pull the front logs forward.

    #3 Colder yet i can go 2 - 3 high in formation #2

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  19. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    My old smoke dragons will take up to about a 28" or so, I've been cutting 20-26" most of the time, depending on how the log lengths worked out. My old woodshed I built figuring on 18", but the new one I built based on 24" lengths. I can still use the longer lengths in the old shed, it just means my side cover tarps look a bit pregnant...

    If we ever get a newer EPA stove, I'll probably have to redo the floor of the new woodshed as it really won't work with less than about 20" logs, and it seems like all the new stoves want to burn toothpicks :D

    I actually have a problem with the new stove designs, as I have yet to see one that we could put in to replace our current stoves and still meet reasonable code. Our stoves both go into corners with a triangular hearth. The old stoves are narrow front to back, long width wise, side loaders, with a useless window in the front, and the stack connecting in the back center. This works great with our setup, but I have not seen a single modern EPA stove that loads ONLY from the side - A front loader would require major alterations to the hearth to get the required depth in front of the door, and take a BIG chunk of floor real estate from our already too small living room... As long as the old smokers keep working and I can't find an equivalent modern design, I don't intend to change them.

    Gooserider
  20. DiscoInferno

    DiscoInferno Minister of Fire

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    The stove takes 20" side-side, 12" front-back. I often don't have a say in log length because most of what I scrounge has already been cut to length. When I do the cutting I shoot for around 16-18" but I have terrible aim. Anything over 20" gets cut in half and loaded front-back, it's a lot easier to pack the firebox front-back than side-side.

    The fireplace takes pretty big stuff, maybe 30" or more, and there I do the cutting; still, I try to keep it under 24" since I split by hand. I tend to pack a lot of big splits in there because it's a fireplace, not a stove, and even 5 big sugar maple splits will burn down in an hour or so. Terribly inefficient, but does distribute heat with blower. Now that I see what a modern wood stove can do, the Majestic's days are numbered.
  21. DonCT

    DonCT Minister of Fire

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    The HearthStone Heritage has side load.

    Mine takes 21" logs, and I try to cut to 19-20. I can fit about 20 or so BioBricks in.

    Burn times around 9-10 hours with plenty to relight.
  22. jtcedinburgh

    jtcedinburgh New Member

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    Pah... my Owl only takes up to approx. 14" logs - I could squeeze in a bigger log diagonally, but generally my splits are 'ready split' and fit, so...
  23. firewatcher

    firewatcher New Member

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    Im down here in Jersey and I wish i could get some those biobricks from up north. The closest dealerthey have is upstate new york. And they wont ship!!!
  24. Rhone

    Rhone Minister of Fire

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    Last year, I burned wood that was around 16" (6-8" smaller than my firebox) when my unit is 22" in the back and 24" in the front. That stunk, I put 4-6 splits side/side on the left, and 2-3 stacked up front/back on the right. 6-9 wood splits a burn x 2-4 burns a day I was reloading the amoire I store the wood in, very often. As for burns, air spaces are key to a successful burn and I find the smaller pieces tend to break apart sooner and collapse into the gaps, more often extinguishing the flames. The longer splits hold together, keeping the air channels open giving me better & longer lasting flames. Also, my unit has heat channels on the sides, and putting the small splits front/back on the right prevented the right side from getting as much heat into the living area. I saw somewhere that splits 2" smaller than your firebox is the best stating that splits too small lets heat flow too easily out. As the heat leaves the firebox, if it has to move around obstacles that creates turbulance, and turbulance is one of the secrets to getting more heat transfer. It's one of the principles air solar collectors use, take for example the ones made by CanSolair. The solar air tubes in their solar panels are simply aluminum soda cans with the tops & bottoms removed, stacked on top of each other to make a tube, spray painted black. Hence, the name cansolair. Its secret lies in the shape of soda cans. They are not perfect cylinders, so don't make smooth tubes. As the air flows through, each can creates a little turbulance netting more transfer. So, you don't want to create a smooth path for the heat to leave by having big gaps on the sides, you want to make the heat work to escape, and hit objects and the like, plus that slows it down so it has more time to transfer.

    Mine can take up 22" in back, and 24" in front. This site says about three inches shorter than the firebox width or length, depending on how you load the wood. Here's jotul saying similar. Their main reason is, smaller pieces dry faster and are easier to handle stating 3" smaller than the firebox is a little less than perfect, so my feeling is 1-2" smaller than the firebox is perfect.
  25. Gunner

    Gunner New Member

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    All my stuff is 16-18
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