Modifying a Grandpa Bear to heat water??

Opus Posted By Opus, Mar 23, 2014 at 9:52 AM

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  1. Opus

    New Member 2.

    Mar 23, 2014
    I have a late-70s Grandpa Bear that I inherited a number of years ago and have not used. I am in the process of designing a new house and would love to use the stove. However I cannot use it in the house since the house will be super-tight and extremely well insulated; controlling air flow is a critical element of the design.

    One possibility is to use it outside and modify it to heat water for the radiant floor system. I would probably have to weld water jackets to the top, sides and back. Has anyone done this before? Any suggestions on how to go about it?

    More importantly: Am I at risk of being hunted down by Fisher owners who think I have committed a crime by modifying a sacred object??

  2. coaly

    Fisher Moderator 2.
    Staff Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    NE PA
    Most radiant stoves in Europe have hydro systems added. "Back boilers" and coils are on most stoves there.
    Going outside to load it and loosing the radiant heat outdoors doesn't make sense to me. A stove closely monitored is more likely to achieve more efficient burns.
    If you want a Fisher, the Goldilocks would be my choice for an outside air source stove. Honey Bear also was available with the outside air intake on the mobile home version, but is a much smaller stove. You didn't give the square area you're heating, so no one knows your requirements. A highly insulated home where you are certainly won't need much heat. Honey or Goldi would probably provide plenty, and be more instant heat than radiant slab. Are there many radiant slab systems that far south? They work fine around here with entire months or two below freezing, but a warm day like you have in the winter takes days to respond. Since a radiant slab takes lower temps, storage with a hot water keeper won't take much more than a couple stainless U coils in a Honey or Goldilocks.

    Grandpas are not on the endangered list and are not protected.
  3. WeldrDave

    Feeling the Heat 2.

    Nov 14, 2012
    New Jersey
    Hmmmm..... Find an all nighter/big moe and slaughter it! A kodiak works also....
    Agreed but my hair is standing on end Coaly, although I have modified a couple as I remember....
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