Rangley 1st winter questions

Jim and Sue Posted By Jim and Sue, Jan 4, 2018 at 7:52 AM

  1. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    It's the first winter with the Rangely and its cold.
    I seem to be burning a lot of wood. Very dry maple mostly some beech and ironwood. I get the stove up to 500-600 and then shut it down a little at a time trying to achieve max efficiency. But I'm puzzled.
    I'd like to burn the charred wood and coals down to ash better. I run out of room in the fire box.
    Do you bring it up to temp and then shut the air off completely?
    I don't ever see the spectacular flames of secondary burn like the videos here.
    How hot is too hot for stove top temp with the thermometer on the steel according to the manual?
    How are users handling that awful ash pan? Can I just remove it?
    Thank you
     
  2. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake
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    I cannot answer all of your questions . . . but I suspect folks will be along shortly to help.

    I will ask exactly how dry is the wood . . . dry as defined by a certain moisture level, dry as defined by cut, split and stacked by a set length of time or dry as defined as not wet or covered in snow? Unseasoned wood or wood not seasoned enough can sometimes lead to excessive coaling . . .

    Also, how often are you loading the stove? I tend to have more coals when I am loading the stove more frequently . . . I have better luck waiting longer until my coals are the size of ping pong balls if I am looking to have an easy reload, but not have a large build up of coals. I do tend to see more coals when I am loading more frequently when the weather turns wicked cold as it has been in the past week with sub zero temps . . .

    Final question . . . when you go outside after cutting back the air do you see smoke coming from your chimney or nothing but heat waves? Secondaries may be seen with the BBQ gas jets (flames coming out of the secondary device below the baffle), ghost flames (flames slowly dancing above the wood in the upper portion of the firebox), fireworks (miniature and harmless explosions of flames in the upper third of the firebox) or (my personal favorite) the Portal to Hell has just opened up in your woodstove . . . That said, some folks may not see secondaries and yet are burning efficiently and cleanly as can be seen by checking the chimney for no visible smoke (gotta love stealth burning technology.)
     
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  3. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    Thank you. Wood is split and has been stacked for at least 2 years. It has been under a roof since May in my wood shed( no sides). Some is dead maple that was standing with out bark on it. Very hard not punky. I have been loading often due to the outside temps. I think I'm also maybe choking it down because I'm scared of over firing.
    I see heat waves and no smoke out of the chimney. Also I see partial bar b que blue flames out of the tubes and a lazy dancing fire at the top of the box. Thanks again.
     
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  4. Knots

    Knots
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    I have a Jotul F55 so maybe I can answer some of your questions.

    I have a straight 26-foot chimney since mine's in the basement and as a result I have a very strong draft. The first winter I used to rapidly bring it up to 550 or so and then shut it down and bite my nails as it soared to 700. It should be noted that I used aluminum tape and reduced the secondary inlet area significantly. I have to use a damper too.

    Anyway, I would end up with a big pile of coals that took a long time to go down.

    Now I bring the stove rapidly up to 300-400 and begin slowly closing the damper and the primary. Around 500 I get secondaries rolling across the top. Soon the primary is down to about 25% and the damper is almost closed (if it's cold out) and the stove will cruise at 550-600 for a few hours. I'm still left with a coal pile.

    Three strategies for the coal pile: 1) do nothing and even with the primary and damper open some more the stuff in the back takes forever; 2) rake it all forward and open the primary and damper to 50%. A decent amount of heat radiates out the front during the burn-down; 3) put a piece of dry white pine on the coal pile and let it burn the coals down without making more coals.

    The F55 manual says the optimal temp is 400-700 F in the positions shown in the attached pic. Below 450 the burning seems to be inefficient and stinky. I try to stay away from 700. It feels like it's pushing the stove a little hard. I like 550-600. Like yours, I have no smoke when it's up to temp and just a heat signature. I clean my chimney at the end of season and get a half cup of dry dust.

    I bought the F55 because it didn't have an ash pan. Opinions will surely vary here, but I like simple. When I was looking for stoves I went to several stove shops and none of them were utilizing the ash pans on those models. They just let them fill up. Sorry - I don't have much to offer here. DSC02174.JPG DSC02199.JPG DSC02169.JPG
     
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  5. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    I have good draft but not that much. I'm going to try to burn a little hotter or st least with more air and see what that does. I'm also going to try and empty the pan more often. The pine idea seems doable for me. I might go tip over a dead hemlock tonight and give that a try. Thank you
     
  6. begreen

    begreen
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    Try closing down the air sooner. Don't go by just the stove top temperature, look at the fire. As soon as the wood is burning robustly try turning down the air 50% or until the flames start slowing down. The stove top might only be 300F at this point. Let the fire regain strength and then close it down another 50% or until the flames start getting lazy. Repeat again after the fire regains strength.
     
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  7. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    Will I get less heat and more coals this way? I thought more air = more heat and less coals in the end. Thank you
     
  8. begreen

    begreen
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    I can understand that, but it's actually the opposite with an EPA stove. The more air, the more heat that goes up the flue. By restricting primary air via the air control a vacuum forms in the stove. This pulls more air from the unrestricted secondary manifold and into the secondary tubes. That supports much more robust combustion within the firebox resulting in a hotter stove. Give it a try.

    At the late coaling stage you can open up the air a little bit more to hasten the burn down of the coal bed for 30 minutes or so before reloading.
     
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  9. NW Pa Burner

    NW Pa Burner
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    I have noted with the Osburn 2400 if I reload too early or without first raking the coals to the front the stove will fill up quickly with coals. Allowing the complete burn cycle to run its course with enough coals left for an easy relight keeps them down to a manageable level. As others have said opening the primary air flow in the late stages of the cycle will help too. I'll usually rake them to the front and push the door shut but not latched for a couple minutes before I reload. This gets the coals hot and helps reduce them. Just don't walk away from your stove unless the door is latched shut.
     
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  10. Knots

    Knots
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    Lots of good advice from others here. I'm not an expert on the combustion process, but I think if I burn too fast I burn up all the gases in the wood and I'm left with the coals and nothing to burn them quickly. I think I'm aiming for that sweet spot where I'm burning the gases with the secondaries at a steady rate.

    I've gotten to the point that I can tell by the frequency of the metal expanding "pops" and sound of the primary combustion whether I'm bringing it up too fast and also when it is cruising at temperature.
     
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  11. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    With shutting the air to about 20-25%at night with a full firebox, should I be concerned about over firing then? I'm going to give this a try tonight. I'll get rid of the coals first. It's supposed to be -16. Thank you
     
  12. begreen

    begreen
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    It takes time to get used to a new stove. Experiment during the daytime to boost knowledge and confidence.

    By packing the stove with larger, thicker splits and turning it down fairly aggressively, the risk of overfire is low, but we don't know what your wood supply is like or the strength of draft in the flue, so you will have to tell us what you experience. If there is concern, just load it 3/4 full.

    As always, pictures are helpful if you want feedback. Take some of full loads, before closing the door and at various stages of the burn.
     
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  13. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    I must have hit the button too many times. This is 2 pieces of dry maple . No bark. After burning down the coals. Stove temp 225. I opened door to take photo. Air opened fully.
     
  14. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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  15. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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  16. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    Primary air closed about 25%. Stove temp up to 325.
     
  17. mvortex1

    mvortex1
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    Nov 14, 2017
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    I have a lock on the F50 TL sister model. Closeout price is $2300. Install on our existing FP hearth with an extension pad is another $475 since we already have a SS liner. Thanks for posting this, everyone is trying to talk us into getting an insert but they are way more, even negating the hearth pad extension which can be more than $400 due to the surround cost. We picked the Rangely TL because we wanted the F55 but the F50 is a closeout price. I do like the cooking and grill option but would rather have a sideloader option like the F55 to be honest. We have a full, stone face 25' chimney with a very large opening that will accomdate the F50 TL as well as a F55. Just commenting because we like this stove so much after comparison to other models, hope yours and ours works out!
     
  18. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    The stove is great. It's a tough winter to learn on though. It's -18 right now. I had the Jory's ordered that had the side load but I have a corner install. I read all the schtuff that said it was bad for a corner install plus you had to lock the side door etc. We get long burns. It does use more wood than my last one. The weatherman just said last year on this date it was 36, 54 degrees different right now. My house is warm though.
     
  19. begreen

    begreen
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    Do you mean the air was turned down by 25% to 75% open or to 25% open? Tomorrow try 4 logs and turn down the air further if possible.
     
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  20. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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  21. Shaun643

    Shaun643
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    Jan 4, 2018
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    Hello Jim and Sue. I have a few questions first are you getting enough heat in the room or house your heating. If you are do you have to load the stove often or not alot. I have the same problem right now with my stove way too many coals. I would say do to the weather and poorly insulated house have iam burning alot of wood fast to keep up enough heat in my house. Giving me lots of coals.

    Always rake the coals to the front of the stove before you load. Also what I have been doing is once I have nothing but coals I open the air control all the way and rake a large pile to the front of the stove and leave the door open I get alot if radiant heat from that and let the pile burn down. If you don't feel comfortable doing that don't leave the door open. Also raking coals to the front and put one small split on top of the pile and leave the air open you may have to do this two or three times
     
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  22. Jim and Sue

    Jim and Sue
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    Feb 19, 2015
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    It's working hard to keep up now but it's cold. With the temps in the teens it was fine. I'm trying not to load it too full to see if the coal problem gets better. Stove is at 440 with 2- 4" splits in it
     
  23. Shaun643

    Shaun643
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    I have the same issue in the teens and mid single digits I have no problem heating the house and I can let the stove run longer on a load as I get enough heat from the coals. Right now it's -22°F and iam loading it alot to keep the heat up. What works best for me is raking the coals to the front and leaving the air open all the way. For the most part the only wood I have is Ash and if I put one small piece on the pile loaded east to west that helps a little
     
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  24. Knots

    Knots
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    Unless they changed the design recently, my F55 does not have a side loader option.
     
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