Woodstove surround- stone/sand

Post in 'The Gear' started by bjorn773, Sep 13, 2007.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. bjorn773

    bjorn773
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2007
    Messages:
    234
    Likes Received:
    2
    Loc:
    Rockford, Illinois
    Hello all, I am a newbie here in search of opinions. I have a Century stove in my basement that I have used exclusively to heat my home for the past several years. With both my wife and I working full time, I cannot keep a fire going all day, so the house is a bit cool when we return. I am curious if there would be an advantage to surrounding the stove with slab stone or even a hollow steel enclosure filled with sand(I like to weld stuff). In the photo gallery here there is a photo of an Englander stove with a slab of soapstone set on top. Is there a real advantage to this or am I wasting my time. My theory is the stone or sand would retain much of the heat and slowly radiate it throughout the day, much like a soapstone stove. Any input will be appreciated.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart
    Expand Collapse
    Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    32,182
    Likes Received:
    9,465
    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    My Englander sits in my fireplace and the surrounding masonry sure soaks up the heat and radiates it after the stove burns down.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  3. carpniels

    carpniels
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2005
    Messages:
    536
    Likes Received:
    0
    Loc:
    Rome, NY, USA
    Hi Bjorn,

    Sure, that would work. That is how masonry heaters and also soapstone stoves work. But I have to wonder if it is worth all the effort. If I were you, I would probably replace the century with a stove that is built for 24/7 burning and that will retain heat, such as a hearthstone or woodstock stove. Or perhaps a PE stove with EBT.

    Carpniels
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  4. bjorn773

    bjorn773
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2007
    Messages:
    234
    Likes Received:
    2
    Loc:
    Rockford, Illinois
    Thanks for the advise. I figured replacing the stove would be recommended. It's just not in the budget at the moment. I have more time than money I guess. I'm going to try placing a large stainless pan on top filled with sand first. No real investment in time or money. Thanks again!
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  5. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart
    Expand Collapse
    Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    32,182
    Likes Received:
    9,465
    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    I always wonder what it would do if you replaced the firebricks in a steel stove with soapstone bricks.

    (I can't hear Bob down at England's Stove Works yelling "He is is wondering about WHAT?!!" from here.)
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  6. MrGriz

    MrGriz
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,022
    Likes Received:
    0
    Loc:
    Waterford, WI
    I've wondered the same thing.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  7. Burn-1

    Burn-1
    Expand Collapse
    Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2006
    Messages:
    446
    Likes Received:
    1
    Loc:
    Lakes Region, NH
    Most of the newer Hearthstone models do have soapstone bricks.

    Bjorn I don't think you can take a steel stove and try to make it into a soapstone stove. You can see how this guy made his own heater using mass and a barrel stove, (and an oil tank!), which I'm sure he got pretty hot in order to transfer enough heat into the mass. But a masonry heater works by having a white-hot fire at full bore and lots of mass with a fair lag between firing and actual heating coming from the mass.

    Your Century has way less mass because it is engineered to immediately begin releasing so many BTU's over so much time. If you were to fire it to the point needed to charge the mass you are suggesting with heat then you risk over-firing the stove or burning the wood too quickly at which point your house would probably be cold again.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  8. bjorn773

    bjorn773
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2007
    Messages:
    234
    Likes Received:
    2
    Loc:
    Rockford, Illinois
    I'm not hoping to re-engineer my stove, just kicking ideas around in hopes for feedback just like this. Funny, I had the same discussion with my physicist brother. He felt there would be no advantage to the surround. His thought was that I'd be better off burning the stove as hot(safely) as possible to achieve maximum btu from the wood and max efficiency from the stove. But, he has had some theories in the past that have proved less than perfect. Anyway, thanks for the input.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  9. Burn-1

    Burn-1
    Expand Collapse
    Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2006
    Messages:
    446
    Likes Received:
    1
    Loc:
    Lakes Region, NH
    I noticed these soapstone firebricks on the Rumford site. I'm tempted to try them out, at least my Phoenix
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

Entire Site copyright © 1995-2016 - email to webinfo@hearth.com
Hearth.com and HearthNet are property and trademarks of Hearth.com LLC Advertising Information