Cutting slightly too big of rounds down?

mar13

Member
Nov 5, 2018
162
Humboldt coast, California
I recently was provided large rounds of non uniform lengths, some of which are over 16 inches, say 20 inches in length. I'm changing from a large old top loading VC Vigilant to a smaller T5 firebox (suggests 16" length).

So what's your strategy for cutting the rounds to length? For example, cut 4" off a 20" and then have some random lefto chunks? Or cut in half to get two 10" rounds? I used to do the cut in half as it's easier to chainsaw, but then it makes the stacking non uniform. I'm leaning towards the 16" plus chunks remaining.
 

EODMSgt

Member
Dec 11, 2018
142
White Mountain Region, NH
I always cut larger odd-sized rounds down to 16" so my stacks are uniform. The remaining chunks get cut to manageable pieces and tossed in the 'uglies' bin to be used during shoulder season.
 

BIGChrisNH

Feeling the Heat
Dec 16, 2015
372
New Hampshire
I also cut larger rounds down to a certain size so the stacks are uniform. Then I have a bin outside that the chunks get thrown into. If it's 4 inches say, you could always split that down real small for kindling if you have the time. I'll usually do several 5 gallon pails worth of kindling like that after the real splitting is done to make use of some of the odd sized chunks, then it's ready to help start fires when you want it.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
2,788
Downeast Maine
I also have the larger Solo Stove smokeless outdoor fire pit that I use my weird shaped stuff in as well.
 

kborndale

Burning Hunk
Oct 9, 2008
155
LI
I also have the larger Solo Stove smokeless outdoor fire pit that I use my weird shaped stuff in as well.
How smokeless is that fire pit? Couldnt you just cut some holes in the bottom of a 50 gal drum and put in a grate a few inches up and cut the top of the drum off? Or maybe an old washing machine drum? $300 seems like a lot for essentially a modified 50 gal drum, or am I missing something?
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
2,788
Downeast Maine
How smokeless is that fire pit? Couldnt you just cut some holes in the bottom of a 50 gal drum and put in a grate a few inches up and cut the top of the drum off? Or maybe an old washing machine drum? $300 seems like a lot for essentially a modified 50 gal drum, or am I missing something?
You could do that, but it would still look like a hobo barrel. It's as smokeless as your wood stove. It's actually nice when the wind shifts and blows towards you, more heat! The stainless looks nice and should never rust. I still keep it covered when I don't use it. I wish it had a domed screen for sparks, but that only really happens with pallet wood, which burns way too fast anyway. My wife felt the same way as you, but after using it yesterday evening she likes it. There's also no ashy mess to clean up. They are expensive, but very convenient.
 

JohnDolz

Feeling the Heat
Dec 29, 2015
472
Burlington, CT
You could do that, but it would still look like a hobo barrel. It's as smokeless as your wood stove. It's actually nice when the wind shifts and blows towards you, more heat! The stainless looks nice and should never rust. I still keep it covered when I don't use it. I wish it had a domed screen for sparks, but that only really happens with pallet wood, which burns way too fast anyway. My wife felt the same way as you, but after using it yesterday evening she likes it. There's also no ashy mess to clean up. They are expensive, but very convenient.
I have one and love it as well. We use it on our deck and looks great. My only wish is that it had some handles to make dumping of the ash easier.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
2,788
Downeast Maine
I have one and love it as well. We use it on our deck and looks great. My only wish is that it had some handles to make dumping of the ash easier.
I haven't had to do that yet, but I'm. Sure it will not be fun since I have the largest version.
 

Woody5506

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2017
694
Rochester NY
Usually I cut to proper length and use the random cutoff chunks either to put on top of tarps or if they are in the 5" tall range I will use them as support under the 4x4's that i stack my wood on.


Also, the T5 will easily take 18" splits, and you can fit 20" or 21" diagonally if you were only putting a couple in.
 

JohnDolz

Feeling the Heat
Dec 29, 2015
472
Burlington, CT
I haven't had to do that yet, but I'm. Sure it will not be fun since I have the largest version.
Mine is as well. I use it on the deck so I don't like the ash falling out of the holes. Just a bit awkward to dump without denting the sides. I have emailed Solo a couple of times about it, somewhat disappointed that they pretty much blow me off. They say their Engineers are aware and working on it but no hint that they will do anything for folks that bought and supported their 1st manufacturing run.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
2,788
Downeast Maine
Mine is as well. I use it on the deck so I don't like the ash falling out of the holes. Just a bit awkward to dump without denting the sides. I have emailed Solo a couple of times about it, somewhat disappointed that they pretty much blow me off. They say their Engineers are aware and working on it but no hint that they will do anything for folks that bought and supported their 1st manufacturing run.
Mine arrived with two small dents, but I chalk that up to being shipped to the most northeast part of the US. I don't have issues with ash falling out of the bottom. Is this a preproduction issue?
 

JohnDolz

Feeling the Heat
Dec 29, 2015
472
Burlington, CT
Mine arrived with two small dents, but I chalk that up to being shipped to the most northeast part of the US. I don't have issues with ash falling out of the bottom. Is this a preproduction issue?
I think we h
Mine arrived with two small dents, but I chalk that up to being shipped to the most northeast part of the US. I don't have issues with ash falling out of the bottom. Is this a preproduction issue?
I think we may have hi-jacked this thread, feel free to PM me. I don't think it is a preproduction problem - I am assuming yours came off of the same production run. It is just the holes at the bottom designed to let air in, when ash builds up it will "overflow" out of those holes. I think they recommend emptying it after each use. Yes mine arrived with 2 small dents as well. Box was intact so I am thinking it happened before it was packed. Again with no handles it is difficult for anyone to move around. Certainly still love it, just need 2 people to move and inevitably fingers are placed into the airholes to get a grip. I make one of my young boys help me so I am always worried about a finger getting sliced. Once it is dented up I will no loner care and this won't be an issue:).
 
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firefighterjake

Minister of Fire
Jul 22, 2008
18,901
Unity/Bangor, Maine
Cut 'em down to uniform length.

Take the chunks and toss them on to the top of your stacks.

Burn chunks at the start or end of the burning season along with any punks or uglies (i.e. dry, punky wood or odd-shaped splits that will take up space in the fire box.)
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,643
Southern IN
Usually I cut to proper length....Also, the T5 will easily take 18" splits, and you can fit 20" or 21" diagonally if you were only putting a couple in.
Yeah, I'd go with 16". Luckily, that's what I was cutting before for the in-laws as well as our stove. It would be a squeeze to get an 18" split in the T5, on the one I'm burning anyway. It would have to come up over the boost manifold and be really close to the glass. And it would drop a lot of ash right up against the door, where it might fall out onto the ash lip when you open the door. I didn't try to see what would go diagonal, but that would work in the off-season where you don't need big loads cranking out max heat.
 

heavy hammer

Minister of Fire
Jul 18, 2015
1,447
Kirtland Ohio
Cut to the length you need and save the small chunks for when just a smaller fire is needed.