Help buying first EPA stove

Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
Hey folks been lurking on site for quite a while. Awesome source of info. I was curious on opinions of a buck 74... for a 1500 sq ft open concept house newly built. 2x6 outside walls...pretty tight. Average winters here are twenties at night and forties in day time. Wanting to know if it could carry heat load for house.
 

Dataman

Minister of Fire
Sep 10, 2018
578
Newport, Wa
Gonna be buying your Wood? Or play Lumberjack? I just went from Blaze King King to Harmon XXV Pellet Stove. Lots easier. But more expensive.

Blaze King is great stove. I would get stove with at least 2000sq ft capability. But beauty of Pellet Stove is they can turn themselves on and off.

Wood was free most of the time, but I spent 6-8 Hundred on Wood and same on Pellets. Lots easier to load.

No Bugs
No Debri Falling Off
No Barn to deal with
Lots easier Ash Cleanup
Cleaner House

Downside I spent 6k to get everything. Stove, Battery Inverter, Battery and Install. Reused old 8" Chimney

I had catalyst stove and it was good for long time. Load up and it would easily go 12 hours. King is large stove. We have about 2000sq ft house with 600 in basement area. Catalyst last 3-5 years and cost 300 or 350. Pellet stove has parts that fail. Harmon is good manufacture. Dealer we have sucks.
https://www.blazeking.com/
https://www.harmanstoves.com/

Oh when it was 40f I would not use Wood Stove, but switch to Heat Pump. Wood would make house too hot!
 
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wooduser

Minister of Fire
Nov 12, 2018
679
seattle, wa
Keep in mind that your wood is as important as the stove.

I'd be glad to hear about what you have for wood, and how you are planning to supply your need for woord.

All too often we hear from people who are proud of the new stove they installed, but it's working miserably because the wood they have is too wet to burn properly.
 

Dataman

Minister of Fire
Sep 10, 2018
578
Newport, Wa
So true on Wood. I kept 2 years worth. 1 for this year and 1 for next. Take about month to do all the wood gathering. So nice to go to Ace HW and whip out CC and say delivery 4 tons. they take them off with Forklift and put in Bay. We unbundle them and put in bucket on tractor 9x each run. Easy. My body thanks me.

Hurt myself real bad doing wood few years ago. Tripped on rounds and stumbled into one on the ground on chest. Tore Rotator Cuff and Muscle in Left arm. I got back 80% of use. it hurt so bad I had to sit down. Should have gone ER. Lets not get into downing trees and how they can end you life in a second. I hire people for Widow Makers. Got guy do them 100 bucks each.
 

Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
Thanks for the reply. I wanna stick with wood simply for the reason that it is what I have always been around. I also have plenty of timber i own so wood isnt really a cost factor other than saw maintenance and my labor of course....which I enjoy. I will definately look at the blaze king if I can find a dealer around me. I have a buck dealer near me and my father....grandparents etc.. all used bucks. Not knocking the pellet stove though. My aunt has one and it heats very well.
 
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Mojappa

Member
Mar 14, 2018
141
Gerrardstown, WV
get a moisture meter. I'm sure in your reading you've found out how much more important having properly seasoned wood is to operating the newer stove effectively. Older stoves were very forgiving of wet wood and as a result many "old wise men" techniques like seasoning wood for half a year wont cut it now.
 

Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
I got oak that i cut last summer. Four cords and about a half stacked off ground wit barn tin covering it on top. I kno I won't use it much this year but by next winter I plan to have a good stock ready. Winter bout over here in SW mo in another month and half. Plus I work for city in hometown and I get all storm downed trees which is nice...power line cuts etc. Been burning wood whole life just sold old house and stove stayed with it.
 

Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
Mojappa....true true. I plan on getting one...and the reason I dont plan on using a new stove until next winter. I assume my wood isnt seasoned good enough yet for new efficient stoves. But i will get a mm.
 
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bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
19,182
central pa
3 Stages of Life for people with Wood, then Pellets then Gas. I liked FREE heat.
I have quite a few customers in their 80s still heating with wood. And after using several pellet stove I can honestly say never again. I had way more maintenance way more dust allot more noise and allot more money.
 

Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
M
I have quite a few customers in their 80s still heating with wood. And after using several pellet stove I can honestly say never again. I had way more maintenance way more dust allot more noise and allot more money.
yea my gpa does still also. He dont cut it no more tho...me n dad get it cut for him
 
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velvetfoot

Minister of Fire
Dec 5, 2005
9,980
Sand Lake, NY
Having a local dealer is a good thing.

I think a 2.4 ft3 stove could do a pretty good job heating that house in that weather.

I have to say though, I looked at the specs and it seems to say that it can take a 16" piece of firewood. I've gotten used to loading my stove front to back, and I would never willingly go back to side to side. What I actually did was take a 16" piece of firewood with me to the store and see if it fit. I think my stove fit a 17" piece or so. I'd hope that the Buck stove you're looking at would have some slop in it too. I'm pretty careful when I cut my own wood to make sure it's 16", and I have a yellow painted stick with me to make sure, but it's nice to have a little flexibility. Never mind if you have to buy wood already split.
 

velvetfoot

Minister of Fire
Dec 5, 2005
9,980
Sand Lake, NY
Yes, if there are coals. Less of a tendency for coals to roll out, although nothing's fool proof. Shouldn't reload when actual fire is still active though.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
19,182
central pa
M
yea my gpa does still also. He dont cut it no more tho...me n dad get it cut for him
Our one customer who we lost last year was pissed that his wife wouldn't let him go out in the woods to cut anymore when he turned 85. So His son pulled logs into his yard and he cut it there.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,879
Southern IN
That's good to hear as well. Always been partial to bucks for their build quality and customer service....which is becoming rarer and rarer these days
I'm surprised that more people don't talk about them; Then again, many stove that I think are probably very good, don't get much press here.
I called Buckstove a couple times, and they were very helpful. A couple folks have reported they didn't get satisfaction, but most do. Sometimes you just have to be more persistent, e.g. if a call doesn't work, try an email.
So true on Wood. I kept 2 years worth. 1 for this year and 1 for next.
Might work for Douglas Fir or Pine but for Oak, I like three years in the stack.
And yes, getting wood is dangerous. I've been lucky so far...
I assume my wood isnt seasoned good enough yet for new efficient stoves. But i will get a mm.
Grab your largest, wettest split, get it to room temp, re-split, test on the fresh face in the middle of the split. Moisture above 20% will slow the re-burn and decrease heat output.
Having a local dealer is a good thing.
I think a 2.4 ft3 stove could do a pretty good job heating that house in that weather.
If I had time before I planned to burn, I would shop around; like bholler said, there's a lot of good stoves out there. Looks like several Buck non-cats to choose from as well. Maybe I will get into town in the next couple days...I'll check 'em out if I do.
And yes, the 74 might be overkill in that climate with that sq. footage, if your insulation and air-sealing is fair. A lot depends on the layout, if the stove is in the center of the house, etc. Read and learn. ;)
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,879
Southern IN
Plus I work for city in hometown and I get all storm downed trees
Nice (wood) work if you can get it. ==c If you grab Red Maple and stack it now, in the wind, medium-sized splits 4-6", it will be pretty dry by fall. It won't burn as long as Oak, but here, Oak needs two years at least, three is better. My stacks are in the woods and don't get a lot of wind or sun. Wind is the main thing...
 

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
4,277
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
3 Stages of Life for people with Wood, then Pellets then Gas. I liked FREE heat.
Not me. I started with wood, then stayed with wood.

When I am too old to process wood, I'm going solar electric heat! I'll be able to geek out over the battery arrays and charge controllers and such even more than the woodstoves. I imagine that there will be homemade wind turbines involved. Almost looking forward to it. :)
Our one customer who we lost last year was pissed that his wife wouldn't let him go out in the woods to cut anymore when he turned 85. So His son pulled logs into his yard and he cut it there.
Can't help but notice that this story goes from "wife won't let him go cut wood" to death. Maybe I will share this story with my wife...
 
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Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
Nice (wood) work if you can get it. ==c If you grab Red Maple and stack it now, in the wind, medium-sized splits 4-6", it will be pretty dry by fall. It won't burn as long as Oak, but here, Oak needs two years at least, three is better. My stacks are in the woods and don't get a lot of wind or sun. Wind is the main thing...
That's good to know. Never used maple but lots in town tho. Mostly oak and hickory in missouri woods....and that's what I thought bout bucks....not much user reviews or opinions but round here they are a staple. I will definitely look around tho..not against trying sumthin other than buck.
Not me. I started with wood, then stayed with wood.

When I am too old to process wood, I'm going solar electric heat! I'll be able to geek out over the battery arrays and charge controllers and such even more than the woodstoves. I imagine that there will be homemade wind turbines involved. Almost looking forward to it. :)

Can't help but notice that this story goes from "wife won't let him go cut wood" to death. Maybe I will share this story with my wife...
True that. Mans gotta stay active if able and doin what he loves
 
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bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
19,182
central pa
Not me. I started with wood, then stayed with wood.

When I am too old to process wood, I'm going solar electric heat! I'll be able to geek out over the battery arrays and charge controllers and such even more than the woodstoves. I imagine that there will be homemade wind turbines involved. Almost looking forward to it. :)

Can't help but notice that this story goes from "wife won't let him go cut wood" to death. Maybe I will share this story with my wife...
He died at 93.
 
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Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,879
Southern IN
Never used maple but lots in town tho. Mostly oake and hickory in missouri woods....not against trying sumthin other than buck.
I don't know how good you are at wood species ID, but I use Silver Maple for kindling only, doesn't burn as long as Red. Hard (Sugar) Maple is closer to Red Oak in output, but needs two years to dry well. Also, if you have a woodlot to work, small <8" standing dead with the bark gone, is usually ready to burn, or will be by fall.
Same here, we are in an "Oak/Hickory forest." Red Oaks seem to die more than anything else, so that's what I mainly burn.
As far as stoves, I am in the same boat. I'm charged with selecting a new stove for my SIL, to replace her Dutchwest cat. I'm considering cats but also non-cats, to save her from having to buy a new cat every three years. There are a lot of non-cats to choose from.
There are only a couple of stove shops in town, so I will have to travel to check out some other brands.
I went to the local shops yesterday. I was hoping to see a Buck 85 non-cat (closer match to the size you need I think, than the bigger 74.) It also could load N-S or E-W. They didn't have one on the floor, though. :( They had the Enerzones, but the ash plug in the floor looked cumbersome to use. They also had Hearthstone, but I didn't like the door latch, which wasn't adjustable. The Manchester did have an ash grate, though. The other shop has the Lopis. Nice stoves but no good ash systems. I will have to hit the highway to look at other brands, a daunting task but I want to get her the best stove I can come up with.
That said, a Woodstock AS hybrid, high-style, although a cat, would be easy for her to load as she gets older. I probably won't be able to see one in person before buying, but the build quality and engineering on their straight-cat stone stoves that I've had, impressed me.
I'll start a thread soon asking for owner input on some of the stoves I'm looking at...
 

Grizzerbear

Member
Feb 12, 2019
116
SW Missoura
I don't know how good you are at wood species ID, but I use Silver Maple for kindling only, doesn't burn as long as Red. Hard (Sugar) Maple is closer to Red Oak in output, but needs two years to dry well. Also, if you have a woodlot to work, small <8" standing dead with the bark gone, is usually ready to burn, or will be by fall.
Same here, we are in an "Oak/Hickory forest." Red Oaks seem to die more than anything else, so that's what I mainly burn.
As far as stoves, I am in the same boat. I'm charged with selecting a new stove for my SIL, to replace her Dutchwest cat. I'm considering cats but also non-cats, to save her from having to buy a new cat every three years. There are a lot of non-cats to choose from.
There are only a couple of stove shops in town, so I will have to travel to check out some other brands.
I went to the local shops yesterday. I was hoping to see a Buck 85 non-cat (closer match to the size you need I think, than the bigger 74.) It also could load N-S or E-W. They didn't have one on the floor, though. :( They had the Enerzones, but the ash plug in the floor looked cumbersome to use. They also had Hearthstone, but I didn't like the door latch, which wasn't adjustable. The Manchester did have an ash grate, though. The other shop has the Lopis. Nice stoves but no good ash systems. I will have to hit the highway to look at other brands, a daunting task but I want to get her the best stove I can come up with.
That said, a Woodstock AS hybrid, high-style, although a cat, would be easy for her to load as she gets older. I probably won't be able to see one in person before buying, but the build quality and engineering on their straight-cat stone stoves that I've had, impressed me.
I'll start a thread soon asking for owner input on some of the stoves I'm looking at...
I don't know how good you are at wood species ID, but I use Silver Maple for kindling only, doesn't burn as long as Red. Hard (Sugar) Maple is closer to Red Oak in output, but needs two years to dry well. Also, if you have a woodlot to work, small <8" standing dead with the bark gone, is usually ready to burn, or will be by fall.
Same here, we are in an "Oak/Hickory forest." Red Oaks seem to die more than anything else, so that's what I mainly burn.
As far as stoves, I am in the same boat. I'm charged with selecting a new stove for my SIL, to replace her Dutchwest cat. I'm considering cats but also non-cats, to save her from having to buy a new cat every three years. There are a lot of non-cats to choose from.
There are only a couple of stove shops in town, so I will have to travel to check out some other brands.
I went to the local shops yesterday. I was hoping to see a Buck 85 non-cat (closer match to the size you need I think, than the bigger 74.) It also could load N-S or E-W. They didn't have one on the floor, though. :( They had the Enerzones, but the ash plug in the floor looked cumbersome to use. They also had Hearthstone, but I didn't like the door latch, which wasn't adjustable. The Manchester did have an ash grate, though. The other shop has the Lopis. Nice stoves but no good ash systems. I will have to hit the highway to look at other brands, a daunting task but I want to get her the best stove I can come up with.
That said, a Woodstock AS hybrid, high-style, although a cat, would be easy for her to load as she gets older. I probably won't be able to see one in person before buying, but the build quality and engineering on their straight-cat stone stoves that I've had, impressed me.
I'll start a thread soon asking for owner input on some of the stoves I'm looking at...
Yead I had a lot of red oaks that I believe died this summer from drought i guess. I will give the 85 a look over as soon as I get a chance. I thought about getting sumthin with a cat for their burn times which sounds awesome....just figured it might be troublesome for wife when I am not there. Thanks for advice.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
10,879
Southern IN
I thought about getting sumthin with a cat for their burn times which sounds awesome....just figured it might be troublesome for wife when I am not there.
Yeah, I'm gonna quit looking and get my SIL a Woodstock Absolute hybrid. The design is not quite as simple as, say, an Alderlea T5, but that stove has a small ash dump, a door latch I'm not too fond of, and will go through more wood than a cat since it won't burn as low. I'm supplying her and a couple other in-laws with wood...don't wanna cut more than I have to.
Here (and in your location,) we have a lot of mild weather in the winter, perfect for running a low cat burn. The AS has soapstone in the bottom half of the box for longer heat life after the fire goes out, and plate steel and secondary burn in the top for quick heat if she has let room temp drop. She now runs a Dutchwest cat 2460, like my backup stove (yes, women can herd cats.) ;) But with her sq.ft, vaulted ceiling in the main room and 2x4 walls, it can't keep up in a cold snap. With the bigger box of the AS, that shouldn't be a problem. Add to that, the ash grate (which she loves,) reasonably-priced cat and parts, and its low price for a cat stove, and I think she'll be happy with it. There are also a bunch of custom colors and motifs you can select, and colored stove pipe. Sure, it doesn't look as good as the T5, but I think it will pass. Woodstock fanboy, signing off. ==c
 
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