Fisher Goldilocks

Mike M.

Feeling the Heat
Mar 18, 2012
325
Green Bay, WI
I recently cleaned up, painted, re-bricked and installed a Fisher Goldilocks stove. It has the air intake through the pedestal base. Wow does it heat! I don't have any cover on the air intake door and nothing really stops ash from falling in the air intake door area. Was this normal for the stove? What prevents coals and sparks from entering the door area and coming out the pedestal base? Possibly I have to add expanded steel over the air intake but that wouldn't stop any sparks or small embers?
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
No, you run with the ash clean out closed.

Raise the entire base 1 inch off the floor.

There were optional 1 inch balls that bolted to the 4 holes drilled in corners.

You can raise it with brick, anything to get air up through the pedestal.

If you can, installing an outside air intake through the floor is the most efficient use of the stove. This works well when the stove is on first floor and you can run the intake in basement and out the wall.

The entire manual is in the manual section at the top sticky section of the home page of the Fisher Forum. The manual gives the installation for conventional housing without using the through floor intake.
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
Any sparks or burning embers that fall through the intake slot behind door fall into the trap door area. They can't migrate across the stove intake bottom back to the pedestal base. If they would, they would fall on the non-combustible pad under the stove anyway. I never had anything go farther than the clean out area. Only open it to clean with a good draft going and doors shut. This way when any fly ash falls out it is sucked up into the stove. A long narrow tray or pan held up close to the ash drop cover works good to prevent airborne ash from entering home.

The stove was only sold as a kit supplied with a 4 X 4 pad that sat on corrugated steel the same size as pad. It also came with an intake pipe with screen supplied by Dura-Vent along with the chimney and connector pipe parts. It uses the double wall pipe adapter that sits directly on stove with damper made by Adams in it. The same parts are still available! Double wall pipe , and a telescope section for the top of the connector pipe. You don't have the entire set up as tested, so you need to make it with at least the same safety criteria. No bends, straight up, class A chimney. The first couple fires won't put out as much heat since the firebrick absorbs moisture in the air. It takes quite a while to vaporize all the moisture in them for the rated output.
 

Mike M.

Feeling the Heat
Mar 18, 2012
325
Green Bay, WI
Ok thanks this helps a lot. My Fisher is installed on concrete, raised on large blocks. I just found it strange that embers could come out the base. I am using single wall connector pipe, with 20in clearance to combustible material. The stove behaves pretty well, this is my 1st non epa stove. The stove is in a outbuilding work shop, unheated area unless I am out there. She heats up quickly and throws the radiant heat really well.
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
I'm not sure why yours would seem like embers could come out of the pedestal base.

There should be a screen over the intake inside. That only stops anything large from jamming in air intake flap.
When you open the left door the air adjustment bolt allows the air intake flap to drop, so it gets full air from under home when door is open or when screen is in place for Fireplace Mode.

If you open both doors, then close only the left, you will see how far the intake flap closes. When you turn the left air damper closed, the flap seals tightly. A half to one turn only opens the flap a crack all the way across. That is normal operation. Embers from inside the firebox can only possibly shoot through that little slot opening and fall into the clean-out under it, not making it onto the outer stove bottom or migrating toward stove center and falling down the pedestal. The air flap opens like an ash dump, it's not an opening facing the fire. After moving mine using it over 25 years there was nothing under the stove or in the air intake other than in the clean out tray designed to hold ash that falls through the screen.

Bear-O-Matic Draft Control.JPG This is what is left of my intake screen. This photo shows air intake flap wide open. Anything burning would drop into clean out tray onto the closed clean out door directly under intake opening. That is lower than the intake chute across bottom of stove.

I added a cap nut to the adjustment bolt end that contacts the flap lever so the bolt end has a radius instead of being cut square. Smoother contact with lever arm and protects the end thread of cap bolt.

Burning with the ash drop door open allows anything to fall out directly under ash fender.
The photo above was taken while I was installing cement board and tile. Notice I first installed galvanized sheet metal on the floor, then 1/2 inch cement board. Had to fire the stove being the only heat source, then installed the cement board in the entire kitchen before tile.
 

troutbeer

New Member
Feb 9, 2021
2
Neenah, WI
I'm glad this topic came up. I just purchased a Goldilocks this weekend. When I examined it, I noticed the expanded metal over the Bear-o-matic air intake and was wondering if it was oriiginal. Based on your picture Coaly, I can see that it is.

In the unit that I purchased , there was also a piece of 0.4" steel plate that was cut to 5" X 20.75" and was positioned across the front of the stove. I remarked on it at the time of purchase, because I hadn't seen reference to it in the manuals that I had read. The seller indicated that he wasn't sure, but he thought it was original. I can see a few possibilities here:

1) it is original and intended to be exactly where it was positioned (in front of the Bear-o-matic air intake, but not depicted in the images in the user manual.
2) It is original equipment, but it is not intended to be where I found it, and instead is a baffle or some other device that shifted in transport. (possibly intended to be positioned across the top of the firebrick retainers as shown in one of my pics).
3) It was a DIY add-on that someone added because they tended to overload their stove and had issues with ash clogging their air intake.

I am strongly inclined to believe #3, but if anyone can confirm this, I'd be obliged. I definitely want to run this unit as intended and tested by the manufacturer.

Thanks.

TB
 

Attachments

Mike M.

Feeling the Heat
Mar 18, 2012
325
Green Bay, WI
Thanks for the info! Knowing the access clean out door is lower than the base entry helps ease my mind of a possible situation. I think my concerns came from tipping the stove during unloading and transportation and seeing ash fall out the base. Previous owner must have never cleaned it out by the clean out area door. I should have opened that clean out door 1st, my bad. The cap nut idea is excellent! Is it 3/8 thread? I want to grab one before heading back up to my northern property. Any other tips? These have been great, thanks again. This is a cool stove.
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
Thanks for the info! Knowing the access clean out door is lower than the base entry helps ease my mind of a possible situation. I think my concerns came from tipping the stove during unloading and transportation and seeing ash fall out the base. Previous owner must have never cleaned it out by the clean out area door. I should have opened that clean out door 1st, my bad. The cap nut idea is excellent! Is it 3/8 thread? I want to grab one before heading back up to my northern property. Any other tips? These have been great, thanks again. This is a cool stove.
1/2 inch -13 coarse thread.

The only other modification I made was I changed the two wing nuts that hold the ash door closed to brass wing nuts. My Goldilocks is a brass plated door with solid brass air intake dampers. The wing nuts are corrosion free. Newer models only have one nut to hold door closed in the center. Older models have one on each end.

The only other tip I can think of is when emptying the ash door, reach up and wipe the top of the air intake plate clean. It can get ash build up on it and prevent it from closing tight against the firebox bottom.
 
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coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
I'm glad this topic came up. I just purchased a Goldilocks this weekend. When I examined it, I noticed the expanded metal over the Bear-o-matic air intake and was wondering if it was oriiginal. Based on your picture Coaly, I can see that it is.

In the unit that I purchased , there was also a piece of 0.4" steel plate that was cut to 5" X 20.75" and was positioned across the front of the stove. I remarked on it at the time of purchase, because I hadn't seen reference to it in the manuals that I had read. The seller indicated that he wasn't sure, but he thought it was original. I can see a few possibilities here:

1) it is original and intended to be exactly where it was positioned (in front of the Bear-o-matic air intake, but not depicted in the images in the user manual.
2) It is original equipment, but it is not intended to be where I found it, and instead is a baffle or some other device that shifted in transport. (possibly intended to be positioned across the top of the firebrick retainers as shown in one of my pics).
3) It was a DIY add-on that someone added because they tended to overload their stove and had issues with ash clogging their air intake.

I am strongly inclined to believe #3, but if anyone can confirm this, I'd be obliged. I definitely want to run this unit as intended and tested by the manufacturer.

Thanks.

TB
That is not a original part of the Goldilocks. It is a homemade baffle plate.

The original Smoke Shelf Baffle sets on angle iron welded on an angle toward the rear. It has notches cut out in the corners like this;
Smoke Shelf Baffle 1984 Goldilocks.JPG That original plate is 5/16 thick.

That is exactly how it looked when I took the stove out of service, as flat as the day it was put in.
Looking at the receipt, I bought the stove January 21, 1985 and installed it the next day.
Used it as our only heat source until we changed to a Mama Bear for a larger cooktop (it was in the center of kitchen with open floor plan home that I later doubled in size so the larger stove was needed for other reasons) The Goldilocks has a double shield on the back for close clearance installs and didn't radiate much heat rearward. The Mama Bear radiated heat in all directions and milk went sour in the fridge door overnight. I then sat a temporary cement board baffle up behind it to direct heat away from the fridge. Soon tired of a piece of cement board leaning on a laundry rack and started drawing with chalk on the side of the Mama Bear for a baffle plate inside the stove to drive the heat forward. I realized that was the basic design of the baffles in the Fireplace Series stoves that were added in 1980 to reduce smoke particulate. Starting the first fire with the baffle installed, I went outside and sure enough the smoke was far less at start up than I expected to see and has leveled out the high temp spikes in the pipe as well as making the stove much more temperature stable. That is what inspired the baffle thread for the single door stoves in this Forum. That thread was started Oct 31, 2011, so the Goldilocks was used as the only heat source for over 25 years.

I just put that thread in the sticky section at top of the Forum home page since a thread with 132,000 views deserves to be found easily.
 

troutbeer

New Member
Feb 9, 2021
2
Neenah, WI
That is not a original part of the Goldilocks. It is a homemade baffle plate.

The original Smoke Shelf Baffle sets on angle iron welded on an angle toward the rear. It has notches cut out in the corners like this;
View attachment 274151 That original plate is 5/16 thick.
Thanks Coaly.
My baffle plate is in tact, just as your image shows, notches and all. There is a slight curve/dip in the center of mine, either from heat deformation, or a design change by Fisher. The extra 5" plate must have been an add on by the previous owner to guard the air intake as I suspected. I'll take it out.
Thanks for your insight.

TB
 

Mike M.

Feeling the Heat
Mar 18, 2012
325
Green Bay, WI
I was loading my stove straight in (north south). I think this requires about 14in long splits. What is the max loading height? I have heard top of brick height? Or is it OK to load right up to the baffle plate? That gives you way more room...
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
Doesn't matter if you load to the top. Since the air comes in near the bottom it will always burn hotter and down to finer ash near the intake. It can discolor the paint on the sides where it gets hot enough to affect the paint, but it doesn't harm the stove. The baffle will warp, but it can be pounded back flat if it gets bowed to the point of decreasing the loading space.

Since ours was burned 24/7 for a half year, we always removed a little ash from the front each morning and raked coals with a little ash forward before building the new fire on it. This way you never need to leave it go out to remove ash. Many times during a month's cold snap we would burn only oak and end up with a pile of coals to burn down during the day and end up reloading the stove in the afternoon instead of morning.
Keep in mind the stove was designed to only heat a mobile home under 1000 sq. ft.
 

Mike M.

Feeling the Heat
Mar 18, 2012
325
Green Bay, WI
You mentioned overnight burn. Thought that was interesting. Assuming large splits, maybe unsplit rounds? Air control off? Did you have door gaskets installed?
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
Overnight was a small coal pile in the morning. Many times our overnight was filled half through the night burn when really cold. Whoever woke up in the night would top it off.
Just splits. I never burn rounds.

Door gaskets should not be needed. The back of the door and door seal channel has to be clean. Usually a wire wheel in a drill is sufficient.
If it doesn't go to a glow with no flames with air closed it leaks. Then only a flat gasket can be cemented in the door channel. If you're not getting an 8 hour burn with hardwood it probably needs gasket material. A burn is only considered ended when it needs to be relit with a match. So the last hour or two may be coals with little heating capacity, but still considered a burn until a match is needed. If we had a warm day in the winter and left it closed all day, it would still have enough coals to kindle the fire late afternoon. This would be from coals built up from burning at least 2 days straight.

My Mama Bear at the cabin has more coals in the back overnight. The deep stoves shaped to fit logs are farther from the air intake at the rear, so have charcoal and more coals. (charcoal is formed from the absence of oxygen coming in contact with the fuel surface becoming a material with a much lower ignition point. Mixed with coals and given air it takes right off) The single door stoves burn longer than the Fireplace Series. They fire up faster too since the air rushes between the logs toward the exhaust better sounding like an oil burner when cranked up. Completely different experience. You lose a lot by gaining the ability to view the fire with open doors and a wider fireplace style stove. Not to mention the larger cooktop gained with the single door stoves. The only reason we don't heat with a Papa now that the size of the house has doubled is the larger cooktop and oven with water heating capacity on the Kitchen Queen. Otherwise a Papa would be our heat source.
 

Mike M.

Feeling the Heat
Mar 18, 2012
325
Green Bay, WI
Thanks Coaly! My fisher is in an unheated work shop so when I arrive it could be 0 degrees or worse in mid winter. I usually run the stove up to about 600 or so and it stays there for an hour or 2 as the workspace heats up. My burn times are more like 3-6 hours but I am fine with that as I know this is a different application. The space is well insulated but has an overheat door and measures around 500 sq feet. It does have a 10 foot ceiling which I know hurts. I may apply a ceiling fan to help pooling of heat up there. How do you know the stove went to a glow, no flames with air off? Did you have glass doors?
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,180
NE PA
Crack the door open and see if there are any flames real quick before it bursts into flame. Tilting the damper about half closed slows the draft opening door to give you an idea if it was just Smoldering, glowing or flaming. There was no glass door Goldilocks.