Advice on Papa Bear Stove

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baddshah00711

New Member
Jul 24, 2022
3
Northern VA
Good Afternoon, I am thinking about this Papa Bear wood stove from criagslist. I never had a woodstove before but our new house has a place for it. I am not sure how to rate the condidtion of this stove. What do you think? Here are the pictures. Also what are peoples thoughts on older fisher stoves. I hear good things.

Here is the description on the ad "Classic Fisher Papa Bear cast iron wood stove. Recently refinished, fire bricks replaced and have extras that go with stove. Measurements 18in W, 32in L, 420lbs, chimney pipe 6in diameter, accepts 30in logs and heats over 2,000 sq ft"

Thanks is advance.

stove 1.jpg stove 2.jpg stove 3.jpg stove 4.jpg stove 5.jpg stove 6.jpg stove 7.jpg
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
29,088
central pa
Good Afternoon, I am thinking about this Papa Bear wood stove from criagslist. I never had a woodstove before but our new house has a place for it. I am not sure how to rate the condidtion of this stove. What do you think? Here are the pictures. Also what are peoples thoughts on older fisher stoves. I hear good things.

Here is the description on the ad "Classic Fisher Papa Bear cast iron wood stove. Recently refinished, fire bricks replaced and have extras that go with stove. Measurements 18in W, 32in L, 420lbs, chimney pipe 6in diameter, accepts 30in logs and heats over 2,000 sq ft"

Thanks is advance.

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Old fishers like those are tanks. You almost can't hurt them. And they will put out lots of BTUs. But they will also burn through tons of wood to do it and waste allot of heat up the chimney.

They just aren't nearly as efficient as modern stoves. They also have much larger clearance requirements. And if not ul listed can be an issue with insurance
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
2,983
SE North Carolina
Unless it has a UL tag on the back I would pass

New tax credit eligible stove can be had for 1800$. So you get 26% off the stove and all venting parts and labor
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,589
NE PA
This is a unlisted model. They were tested by different labs in different parts of the country until UL became the National recognized testing standard around 1980. Fisher made UL Listed stoves built to different specifications for installations requiring UL label stoves. This one was built pre-UL. During 1979 Fisher started arched top doors. For 1980 they introduced models that did not have the angle iron corners. They also had shields on bottom and rear with UL tag attached to rear shield.

As safety standards changed, there was a time that UL Listed stoves were only required when installed on protected flooring and near flammable walls. This style stove was legally installed where UL Listing was not necessary on cement basement floors and solid masonry hearths where combustible materials were not a factor. Most fabricators continued to make these unlisted style stoves for that purpose and sold $100 cheaper than the Listed models with tags.

So for years, unlisted stoves were installed safely using NFPA 211 Standard that codes adopted. International Code Council added “ALL appliances must be UL approved with UL Label attached. Most states have adopted the International Family of Codes. The Mechanical Code is where you will find solid fuel burning appliances and venting.

This is a Papa Bear I. The later UL Listed stove in this model will be a VI. If your jurisdiction requires UL Listed appliances, or insurance requires it, continue to look for a Listed stove with tag. Any stove missing the tag or modified becomes unlisted. For a unattached building requiring lots of heat this is a very good stove.

These Codes are for the new installation of stoves. An existing installation can continue to be used, so many install and claim they were existing, hence the used stove market. Others unknowingly install and find out they need to find an insurance co. that will cover them. Installed to NFPA 211 it is a safe installation. Codes were written to prevent homemade unsafe stoves from being installed.

This stove is in exceptionally good condition.
 

baddshah00711

New Member
Jul 24, 2022
3
Northern VA
Thank you all for your input. I checked with insurance and they werent concerned. I do need to think about effiency. If the prices is right this might be something I could use for 1 or 2 seasons before upgrading.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
29,088
central pa
Thank you all for your input. I checked with insurance and they werent concerned. I do need to think about effiency. If the prices is right this might be something I could use for 1 or 2 seasons before upgrading.
That may be an option but the price of fishers are generally really high right now.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
94,486
South Puget Sound, WA
In northern VA this stove would be worth checking out.
 

Frankdozer

Burning Hunk
Aug 31, 2016
176
Maine
Thank you all for your input. I checked with insurance and they werent concerned. I do need to think about effiency. If the prices is right this might be something I could use for 1 or 2 seasons before upgrading.
I purchased my Grampa for 250 several years ago. It gobbles down firewood beyond belief. But in comparison to a modern efficient stove at 2000 plus, it would take too long to break even in firewood savings.
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,589
NE PA
Thank you all for your input. I checked with insurance and they werent concerned. I do need to think about effiency. If the prices is right this might be something I could use for 1 or 2 seasons before upgrading.
A insurance adjuster in the case of a claim is concerned. Without something in writing that your insurance will cover a non-compliant installation, don’t expect a claim to be approved.

I use a Mana Bear in a off grid cabin. The extra wood it burns is minimal since I am not there 24/7. I also cut standing dead and have had to burn it before I should. That will not work in a newer stove. I need lots of heat when I get there to bring the temp up from outdoor temperature, so older stoves have their place in a use like mine. (This is the first year in about 20 that I’m two years ahead on wood for my home, so a secondary burn stove will be used for primary heat)

Installing in a outbuilding not connected to your main living structure in case of insurance denial is ok if you’re willing to accept liability of the structure it’s in. A attached garage affecting the entire structure should be avoided.

For your area you should have at least 1500 sf for that stove, or it will drive you out most days. My neighbor heats 3000 sf total up and down from basement as primary heat. These put out a lot of heat. First and best Fisher design ever. Add a baffle using the baffle thread in sticky section. It will save fuel, prevent temp spikes up stack, and makes it more controllable. I would never heat full time without at least adding a baffle.