Need all the information you can give me on the Woodstock Progress Hybrid...

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smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
So here is the story....

We bought our house four years ago and I decided to heat it with wood. There was an awesome fireplace in the family room downstairs, and we decided the best way to go is put an insert in that fireplace. We had the chimney lined with an insulated 6" liner, 25 feet long. I installed a rather large wood burning insert from the 70's (Virginian Model 102). Fireplace dimensions are 31" H x 40" W x 22" deep, so it will handle a LARGE insert. Chimney runs up the center of the house and draws well.

We have a split foyer layout: You walk in the front door and there are 7 step upstairs or 7 steps down. At the bottom of those stairs is our family room. The woodstove is located in that room and the heat drafts up through the foyer really well. The old monster heats the house well as long as the night time lows stay above 30. Below that, and the furnace will run at night. We insulated the attic the first year we were here to R40, and have sealed a fair amount, but it is still a house with single pane windows that was built in '62.

After 4 years of burning with that insert, I am interested in going high tech. I want a more efficient, larger stove. The house is 3600 square feet with an open floor plan for the most part. Because of reading on here, I have already started splitting my wood different and bought a moisture meter.

The problem I have run into, is that I cannot find an insert that is enough of an upgrade for me to justify the astronomical costs (thought of things like the quadrafire 5100i, osburn 2400, etc). The two problems I have are obviously the lack of heat if we lose power, and if I am going to spend 3 grand on an insert, it would need to be large enough that I feel I am getting a very significant upgrade in heat output and burn times.

I looked at things like the Buck 91/94, but they take an 8" flue.

So I really got to looking hard at highly efficient stoves that used a 6" flue collar. For a few months all I have done is read about inserts (reviews, stories, etc) from multiple forums. I was totally against free standing stoves because I would completely have to redo my 55 year old hearth (try matching that brick), and I was totally against CATS. I just read too many stories of folks dropping 200+ dollars every 2 - 3 years on a new CAT. My wood heat doesn't save me enough in this temperate climate to justify that.

But then I read about how the long burns are great for my temperate climate, and how the BK people would never buy another non-cat stove again. Then I talked to the local dealer (who sells Jotul) and they were pushing the F55. But the dealer even said, to have a clean burn and reduce wood consumption, you have to burn the stove hot (400 -550) all the time to realize the clean and efficient burn. He couldn't tell me what this translated to in burn times though. This got me thinking about cats again......

Then I see many pictures of how people have made a hearth redo look awesome, and this got me thinking that I could do something to make a free standing stove work. It helps that many who used to have inserts on here and said that they would NEVER have another insert after going freestanding.

Then I discover the EPA burn data (which for most manufacturers is WAY lower then what they advertise). On that site, I discover the highest efficiency and BTU data (using a standardized test wood) was from woodstock progress hybrid.

I have been reading about the woodstock stoves, emailed the company a few times, etc. The wife saw it and thought WOW, what a beauty. She liked the looks enough that she started throwing out ideas for how to redo the hearth (which let me tell you is amazing considering she wasn't at all interested in the discussion of a new woodstove until then).

They have a BTU calculator on their site, and it put my house as needing 60,000 BTU. They had an EPA stove sizing guide, and it puts me in zone 5, again needing close to 60,000 BTU. I assume both of these are maximums.

I have two heat pumps (one upstairs and one downstairs). These were both professionally installed and sized with multiple measure and computer programs (not just some yahoo that says 1 ton per 700 sqft). He took insulations measurements, counted the number of windows, etc. These systems were sized by a real professional that I trust. That said, their combined strip heat is 23kW. So if my heat pumps both ran in strip heat mode for 60 minutes, I would consume 23kWh. This translates to 78,000 Btu. Now obviously if they shouldn't have 100% duty cycle, so lets say they run 50% of the time. This translates to 38,000 Btu, and is my target number.

Since I rely on several wood sources, and a third of my wood supply is loblolly pine (soft wood), I cannot count on that absolute maximum number that some retailers throw out. I also cannot accept a stove that will burn up in 3 hours to reach that target Btu. For some stoves the EPA test (with softwood) produces less than 40k Btu. This is too low for me.

So here is my concern. We can read all we want, and check square footage and BTU ratings from different sources, etc. But you really don't know what a stove can heat until you use it.

Many of the wonderful reviews of the woodstock progress hybrid are from folks who have 1800 - 2400 square foot homes.

What I am asking of any member that reads this and has a woodstock progress hybrid: Please tell me your climate, square footage, temperature in the stove room and at the coldest room in the house, how often you reload, how often you clean your CAT, how long you can burn, what type of wood you burn, etc.

Woodstocks EPA data lists their Btu's from something like 12,000 - 72,000, so my target is roughly a medium burn. If you run your stove on medium, how long is your burn time? How much space does it heat?

I want actual data from actual users. It is one thing to say it heats great, but if your stove room is 70 and your furthest room is 62, that is too cold for me.

This stove would be a HUGE investment for me, in both time and money. Before I drop that kind of change, I really, really, really need to know that it is something that I want.

My preference is only for those who have first hand experience with the progress hybrid (or perhaps another woodstock product).

If you have another stove that you think could also meet my requirements, I would be willing to listen.

Thank you for reading all the way to the end, and please let me know anything that you can.......
 

JA600L

Minister of Fire
Nov 30, 2013
1,276
Lancaster Pennsylvania
Honestly, with that square footage and lack of good insulation and windows, I would say you need a furnace. The 60,000 btu rating is simply lbs of wood at wide open throttle. Those conditions are not always there when a low night burn is needed. Then you probably cut that number in half. Think big.... For example the energy max 110 or 170 http://www.garysinc.com/ds_machine.htm

I'm sure the woodstock would put up a good fight. I just think in the end you might be frustrated and want to go bigger. A woodstove does not heat evenly like a heat pump. So I don't know how you could possibly compare the two.
 
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DougA

Minister of Fire
Dec 13, 2012
1,938
S. ON
I'm in a similar situation so I'll read the replies but I wanted to correct one thing. Dry pine will produce a lot of BTUs, it just won't burn for half the time of oak, etc. so the total output over the same time period as oak is much less. IOW, pine will give you tons of heat, you'll just have to reload twice as often.

I think your goal should be to replace most of your primary heat source, not necessarily all of it. If done properly, the heat loss should have a lot of spare room as they are taking into account the degree days at your location, etc. at the very coldest you might get outside. You can cut the BTU number required by a fair bit, assuming that you want the stove plus some heat from your HPs on when it's the coldest and stove only, the rest of the time.
 

Charles1981

Minister of Fire
Feb 19, 2013
762
Michigan
How happy are you with that Virginia Model 102? Can you measure the firebox size on that? It would be nice to know the cubic feet inside.

I would imagine if you are happy with that old beast you would be equally if not more happy with a newer EPA model (If your wood is seasoned) and it seems you are keeping good track of your wood and seasoning.

If you are burning mostly pine I would suspect you are filling that stove very frequently.

Another option would be to wait a little longer. Wood stock is developing a newer steel/hybrid stove with a large firebox that accepts a 6inch liner. There is a thread about it here https://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/beta-testing-woodstocks-ideal-steel-hybrid.119701/

As far as running numbers, I'm not so good with numbers. I'll let someone else evaluate those.

But if you are happy with an old smoke dragon I would only hope you would be extending your burn times substantially with a newer stove no matter what you chose.

But at 3600 feet that can be a heavy burden for any of the massive 4+ cubic feet firebox stoves out there and they all require an 8 inch liner.

That would be your other option is get a new 8inch liner installed replacing the 6incher.
 

_CY_

Burning Hunk
Jan 2, 2008
183
Tulsa, OK
sounds like a job for Buck 91 or BK model King both with over 4 cubic ft fireboxes. both good for 10-12 hour burn times on high.
buck 91 claims 83% efficiency .. BK claims 88%

what's the layout of home?
 

BrotherBart

Modesterator
Staff member
That is the largest split foyer in the history of the world. !!! And I know. I live in the split foyer capital of the world. With a interior chimney up through the middle of it? Can't picture that one.

Look at the big Kuma stoves.
 

weatherguy

Minister of Fire
Feb 20, 2009
5,805
Central Mass
A Kuma Sequoia's a big stove but again you'd need an 8 inch liner. I'm kind of in the same boat as you only my house is about 900sf smaller and better insulated but in zone 3. If I could have got an 8 inch liner down my flue I'd have the Kuma right now. I'm also leaning towards the PH.
The Kuma can be installed as an insert or free stander just like the Buck 91.
 

JA600L

Minister of Fire
Nov 30, 2013
1,276
Lancaster Pennsylvania
The Ds energy max 110 at 110,000 btus on high has a 3.6 cuft firebox. It uses a 6" exhaust.
 

Charles1981

Minister of Fire
Feb 19, 2013
762
Michigan
Wow I thought the BK king and princess were kind of .... utilitarian looking. That stove is no frills whatsoever.
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
That is the largest split foyer in the history of the world. !!! And I know. I live in the split foyer capital of the world. With a interior chimney up through the middle of it? Can't picture that one.

Look at the big Kuma stoves.

Here is a picture of the house (with a tiny bit of the woodpile showing on the far right). The whole area was built in the early 60's and the people who owned and developed the land and built all of the houses built this one last. It was their dream home.

When I first started looking in November, I considered Kuma, but they are 8" flue collars.
 

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smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
A Kuma Sequoia's a big stove but again you'd need an 8 inch liner. I'm kind of in the same boat as you only my house is about 900sf smaller and better insulated but in zone 3. If I could have got an 8 inch liner down my flue I'd have the Kuma right now. I'm also leaning towards the PH.
The Kuma can be installed as an insert or free stander just like the Buck 91.

My issue is that an 8" liner is out of the question for two reasons. A) We relined this chimney 4 years ago, and I am not bearing that time/expense again. B) An 8 inch liner will not fit (I looked into that 4 years ago).
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
How happy are you with that Virginia Model 102? Can you measure the firebox size on that? It would be nice to know the cubic feet inside.

I would imagine if you are happy with that old beast you would be equally if not more happy with a newer EPA model (If your wood is seasoned) and it seems you are keeping good track of your wood and seasoning.

If you are burning mostly pine I would suspect you are filling that stove very frequently.

Another option would be to wait a little longer. Wood stock is developing a newer steel/hybrid stove with a large firebox that accepts a 6inch liner. There is a thread about it here https://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/beta-testing-woodstocks-ideal-steel-hybrid.119701/

As far as running numbers, I'm not so good with numbers. I'll let someone else evaluate those.

But if you are happy with an old smoke dragon I would only hope you would be extending your burn times substantially with a newer stove no matter what you chose.

But at 3600 feet that can be a heavy burden for any of the massive 4+ cubic feet firebox stoves out there and they all require an 8 inch liner.

That would be your other option is get a new 8inch liner installed replacing the 6incher.

Firebox comes in at 2.7 cubic feet (if I stuff it all the way).

It will keep up as long as the lows stay 30 or higher and the highs get above 42. We still have to run our heat on the colder days.

My goal is to get a stove that will eliminate my heating needs.

I burn about 1/3 pine. It gets fires going in the morning before I head off to work, and it is great for those days you need a little heat. Even with hickory, oak, and maple, I cannot heat the house overnight below 30.
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
I'm in a similar situation so I'll read the replies but I wanted to correct one thing. Dry pine will produce a lot of BTUs, it just won't burn for half the time of oak, etc. so the total output over the same time period as oak is much less. IOW, pine will give you tons of heat, you'll just have to reload twice as often.........

I never said it wouldn't. Pine is easy to get because none of the old timers around here will burn it. I was apprehensive at first, but found no change in the chimney regardless of how little or how much pine I burned. I like how hot it burns, and use it regularly in the evening (to get temps up before bed) and in the mornings (to get temps up before going to work).
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
Honestly, with that square footage and lack of good insulation and windows, I would say you need a furnace. The 60,000 btu rating is simply lbs of wood at wide open throttle. Those conditions are not always there when a low night burn is needed. Then you probably cut that number in half. Think big.... For example the energy max 110 or 170 http://www.garysinc.com/ds_machine.htm

I'm sure the woodstock would put up a good fight. I just think in the end you might be frustrated and want to go bigger. A woodstove does not heat evenly like a heat pump. So I don't know how you could possibly compare the two.

Furnace was the first thing I looked at, and it is a no go.

The down stairs heat pump is located in a place that to run a chimney for a furnace would either be

1- A 12' horizontal run to the outside of the house, then up the outside wall.

2 - straight up through my kitchen or dining room.

Neither of these is acceptable if I wish to stay married (and I do).
 

DougA

Minister of Fire
Dec 13, 2012
1,938
S. ON
I'd also look at a PE Summit. Big box, 6" chimney and a lot of people love them. I spoke to Woodstock a few days ago and they are still looking at late summer for delivery and a $2K price approx. for the Steel Hybrid.
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
The Ds energy max 110 at 110,000 btus on high has a 3.6 cuft firebox. It uses a 6" exhaust.

I am concerned that there isn't a lot of information on it, and the wife would veto the looks.
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
I'd also look at a PE Summit. Big box, 6" chimney and a lot of people love them. I spoke to Woodstock a few days ago and they are still looking at late summer for delivery and a $2K price approx. for the Steel Hybrid.

PE Summit was on my short list, because I was originally looking at an insert. But the Summit would cost me $2700 (local dealer quote, plus taxes). Why not go for a free standing stove at that price point?

I have beaten the insert idea to death, and have pretty much realized that I am gonna redo my hearth and go freestanding. If I could get a try and you will love it or we will buy it back from a company like Blaze King (princess insert) or PE (Summit), then I would look more seriously at them.

So any ideas for freestanding (6" liner) or information on the Woodstock Progress Hybrid. The folks at Woodstock even told me that they thought there stove was up to the task, which is why I am really stuck on this stove. They believe in their product, and are willing to put their money where their mouths are......
 

teutonicking

Feeling the Heat
Aug 18, 2011
387
Maryland
After 4 years of burning with that insert, I am interested in going high tech. I want a more efficient, larger stove. The house is 3600 square feet with an open floor plan for the most part. Because of reading on here, I have already started splitting my wood different and bought a moisture meter.

I have had a PH for several three winters now. The area of my house that I'm heating is about 3400 square feet. In the first two winters, which were VERY mild, it did a great job of heating my home. But even then we were running it pretty hard when cold outside and needed 3 loads/day. This winter, which has been very cold, it has not been able to heat our home without running our gas furnace to supplement. Its a great stove, but for the size of your home, I would seriously think about getting a second stove.
 

toddnic

Minister of Fire
Jul 13, 2013
782
North Carolina
Smokedragon, welcome to the Forum! It is wonderful to see a number of North Carolinians joining the forum. Regarding the PH, this is our first year using it. It is an amazing stove and keeps our 2400 sq. ft. house warm even on the few days that it is below 0F (10 degrees this morning and the house is 73 degrees after a 8 hour overnight burn). I have to agree with teutonicking that 3,600 sq. ft. is a lot for the PH. As you mentioned, your house is an older home with single pane windows. The PH will definitely make a significant difference but I don't know if it is large enough to heat your entire house.
 

weatherguy

Minister of Fire
Feb 20, 2009
5,805
Central Mass
Doesn't sound like you have a choice seeing how your sticking with the liner you have, heating 3600 SF and need the wife's approval. The only stove that can satisfy all 3 or come as close as any is the PH.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,548
South Puget Sound, WA
There are tons of long and detailed threads on this stove that should be read for a complete picture. The Woodstock folks are also easy to contact and talk about site specific questions.
 

fire_man

Minister of Fire
Feb 6, 2009
2,464
North Eastern MA
"smokedragon, post: 1680238, member: 34099"]So here is the story....
What I am asking of any member that reads this and has a woodstock progress hybrid: Please tell me your climate, square footage, temperature in the stove room and at the coldest room in the house, how often you reload, how often you clean your CAT, how long you can burn, what type of wood you burn, etc.
I want actual data from actual users. It is one thing to say it heats great, but if your stove room is 70 and your furthest room is 62, that is too cold for me.
Climate: Boston area, many weeks it never makes it above freezing, overnight lows near zero on 3-5 days per year.
Square footage: 2300 sq ft Garrison Cononial w/ attached family room with a cathedral ceiling (stove is in family room).
Temp in the stove room right now (at 5:30 pm) is 65.5F, it's 19.8F outside (it never got above 25F today), coldest room in house is 58.1 F in second floor bedroom, Room furthest from stove on first floor is 58.6F.

Today it was fully loaded w/ oak/beech at 4am and 1pm. Will do a third and final load in evening.

Burns 12 hours easy in milder weather, only 8-9 hrs in this cold.

Walls are 2x6 construction, attic was sealed and has R30 + 6" blown insulation, I just replaced all windows w/ Marvin Ultrex. House wrap is killing me, it is like tissue paper material garbage.

I am looking into a second stove for other end of the house. I love this stove, it's just too much drafty house for 2-3 months of the year for any single woodstove.

Hope this helps - you are asking all the right questions.
 
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smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
After 4 years of burning with that insert, I am interested in going high tech. I want a more efficient, larger stove. The house is 3600 square feet with an open floor plan for the most part. Because of reading on here, I have already started splitting my wood different and bought a moisture meter.

I have had a PH for several three winters now. The area of my house that I'm heating is about 3400 square feet. In the first two winters, which were VERY mild, it did a great job of heating my home. But even then we were running it pretty hard when cold outside and needed 3 loads/day. This winter, which has been very cold, it has not been able to heat our home without running our gas furnace to supplement. Its a great stove, but for the size of your home, I would seriously think about getting a second stove.

I see you are in Maryland, so I would expect it to be colder there.......how would you rate your insulation and windows (for my comparison, my attic is R40, walls R13, and my windows are single pane from 1962). That is the kind of information I need to have for a fair comparison.

Thanks.
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
Smokedragon, welcome to the Forum! It is wonderful to see a number of North Carolinians joining the forum. Regarding the PH, this is our first year using it. It is an amazing stove and keeps our 2400 sq. ft. house warm even on the few days that it is below 0F (10 degrees this morning and the house is 73 degrees after a 8 hour overnight burn). I have to agree with teutonicking that 3,600 sq. ft. is a lot for the PH. As you mentioned, your house is an older home with single pane windows. The PH will definitely make a significant difference but I don't know if it is large enough to heat your entire house.

What part of NC are you in? Can you give me an idea of windows/insulation of your home for a fair comparison?

Compared to somewhere like Boone or Blowing rock, our temperatures are milder so that makes a difference for me.

Thanks
 

smokedragon

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
928
Greensboro, NC
Doesn't sound like you have a choice seeing how your sticking with the liner you have, heating 3600 SF and need the wife's approval. The only stove that can satisfy all 3 or come as close as any is the PH.

The princess is actually the insert that got me thinking about catalytic......what are you heating with it if I may ask (insulation, temperatures inside and out, windows, etc.) I don't think the princess would do the job, but it is one that is still on my short list. If I could talk the wife into running a second chimney, the princess or the PE summit would be going into my fireplace this spring.
 
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