So many choices, I'm torn between these models. Thoughts appreciated.

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kevk

New Member
Mar 30, 2024
44
Georgia
Hi all. I didn't realize choosing a wood stove would take so much time and consideration. There are so many choices and tbh I've really enjoyed researching the different models and technologies.

I'm currently under construction, building a small cabin.
Location: BlueRidge mountains in the south east.
800 sq ft main floor with a 200 sq ft loft, stick build.
Living room & kitchen area is roughly 600 sq ft, ceiling height is 18.5 ft.
Blueprint calls for a wood burning stove in the center of the room; can't place it anywhere else, as it would impact furniture placement. Bedroom & loft space is walled off from the living room past the black wall (pic below). Due to the main living area being small, I didn't want a stove that would be overbearingly hot to sit in front of. Got some great advice and have boiled it down to either a BK Ashford 20.2 or a Hearthstone Heritage. Interested in hearing from the wood stove crowd what you'd choose for this space.

Thanks!

Interior pic below is of another build of the same house plan.

So many choices, I'm torn between these models. Thoughts appreciated.
 
The cabin looks pretty sweet 👍🏻 the BK stove seem to be highly regarded on this forum. I personally like the looks of the Hearthstone stoves. The heritage would look handsome in this cabin IMHO. I have a Hearthstone Green Mountain 60 and have only had two fires in it so far but have enjoyed it.
 
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1. Have a ceiling fan or all the heat will be at the top.
2. I'm not sure how hearthstone stoves look from the back. BKs look rather industrial on the back side. I'd not want to look at the back of a BK. So either I'd add a half-high (up to the bar) wall there or if the hearthstone looks better, seriously consider that.
3. Depending on what's below the wood floor (directly on slab?) I'd also consider a Tulikvi masonry stove. That's an eye catcher right in the middle of your home, provides fairly consistent heat due to the stone (see the heartstone as well), and doesn't radiate too hot for those being located close by. Just a thought that came up.
4. What are your ideas about burning: "all heat" from the wood stove, or do you have a (minisplit?) heat pump as well that can be used in the shoulder season (of which you may have a decent amount), leading to the stove only being used when it's colder. And do you want a flame view? I'm asking because in a shoulder season burn, the BK will not show much flame (instead a smoldering heap providing fantastically long - 20 hrs for a 20.2 model - and very even heat).
5. A BK 20.2 has more or less the same output when running at its lowest as a larger BK 30.2 - but the larger model can do so for 30 hrs rather than 20 (allowing 24 hr reloads...). And it can provide a bit more heat when it's cold, i.e. its high end output is higher.
Space needs are a bit larger though.

Finally, do you have wood already? Most wood needs to be split, stacked off the ground, and preferably covered (in sun and with wind) for 2 years to be suitable for burning in these modern stoves. (Pine can be done in a year.) You can't buy wood that's dry enough. Seriously. I'm burning 3-4 year old wood and it's a big difference from 2 year old wood. Get wood for next year Asap. Pine, Ash. And get wood for the second year stacked too (cherry, maple). ANd get wood for the third year (oak, of course, hickory). And after doing all that, you'll only need to get the quantity of wood that you burn in one year to replace what you burnt - and it'll dry for three years, and you'll be much, MUCH happier.
Or buy a pallet of biobricks to go with the stove for the first year (and store them inside).
 
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The cabin looks pretty sweet 👍🏻 the BK stove seem to be highly regarded on this forum. I personally like the looks of the Hearthstone stoves. The heritage would look handsome in this cabin IMHO. I have a Hearthstone Green Mountain 60 and have only had two fires in it so far but have enjoyed it.
Thanks! +1 for the Heritage. The GM 60 is a beautiful sleek stove, glad to hear you are enjoying it. At first I was looking at cheaper metal stoves but the research has sucked me in and it looks like I'll be spending a lot more than I was anticipating.
 
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1. Have a ceiling fan or all the heat will be at the top.
While I do like ceiling fans, I will probably will end up taking out the Vornado during the winter months to circulate the air.

2. I'm not sure how hearthstone stoves look from the back. BKs look rather industrial on the back side. I'd not want to look at the back of a BK. So either I'd add a half-high (up to the bar) wall there or if the hearthstone looks better, seriously consider that.
This is a great point. I can't seem to find any rear images of the Heritage...yet. I'll keep looking.
3. Depending on what's below the wood floor (directly on slab?) I'd also consider a Tulikvi masonry stove. That's an eye catcher right in the middle of your home, provides fairly consistent heat due to the stone (see the heartstone as well), and doesn't radiate too hot for those being located close by. Just a thought that came up.
Beautiful stoves, thanks for the suggestion. There is a basement below so I don't think I'd be able to install that without special supports.

4. What are your ideas about burning: "all heat" from the wood stove, or do you have a (minisplit?) heat pump as well that can be used in the shoulder season (of which you may have a decent amount), leading to the stove only being used when it's colder. And do you want a flame view? I'm asking because in a shoulder season burn, the BK will not show much flame (instead a smoldering heap providing fantastically long - 20 hrs for a 20.2 model - and very even heat).
I'm leaning towards multi-zone mini-split heat pumps. Flame view would be nice, but not essential. I saw a YT video of a guy and his BK 30.2. Beautiful stove and he also mentioned long slow burns - I was very impressed. Do you not think I would be able to achieve the same low level smoldering on a Hearthstone.


5. A BK 20.2 has more or less the same output when running at its lowest as a larger BK 30.2 - but the larger model can do so for 30 hrs rather than 20 (allowing 24 hr reloads...). And it can provide a bit more heat when it's cold, i.e. its high end output is higher.

Space needs are a bit larger though.

Finally, do you have wood already? Most wood needs to be split, stacked off the ground, and preferably covered (in sun and with wind) for 2 years to be suitable for burning in these modern stoves. (Pine can be done in a year.) You can't buy wood that's dry enough. Seriously. I'm burning 3-4 year old wood and it's a big difference from 2 year old wood. Get wood for next year Asap. Pine, Ash. And get wood for the second year stacked too (cherry, maple). ANd get wood for the third year (oak, of course, hickory). And after doing all that, you'll only need to get the quantity of wood that you burn in one year to replace what you burnt - and it'll dry for three years, and you'll be much, MUCH happier.
Or buy a pallet of biobricks to go with the stove for the first year (and store them inside).
I was considering the 30.2 as well, do you think it's not overkill for the space?
My builder cut down a bunch of trees when they did the clearing and grading and set them aside for me to use as firewood. I will have a ton of work ahead of me to cut, split and set them aside to season. There are a lot of folks in the area selling wood so I'll probably end up buying for the first couple of years or do the biobricks as you suggested. Thanks for your input!
 
I’m not sure a Vornado will move enough air to keep your loft from being incredibly hot. But maybe it will. Hard to guess at.

If you set up your cabin like the pic, you may want to build a small waist high wall behind the stove. I wouldn’t want someone scooting a chair back into the stove. I could also see a jacket on the back of the chair getting dinged or lit up when ben it gets pushed up against it. The small wall would also hide the back of the stove from view.
 
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One thought from a southern wood burner. I’d would not be getting a cat stove. Heatpump and a secondary combustion stove is a great combo. Take last couple weeks as an example. We have had lows in the low 40s where a fire might have been nice but it was up to 60-70 by 2 pm. AC was on yesterday and it will be back down to 39 Wednesday night. You want a nice little fire with pretty flames and then let it go out.

I lake the pacific energy t5. Some days I think a blaze king would be great but most of the time I’m happy to light a small fire or just turn the thermostat up.
 
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With that type of layout I would be looking for a more radiant stove. Of those two stoves I would pick the Heritage. If you like the soapstone stoves look into Woodstock as well.
 
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I might suggest whatever device you select for moving the air above the stove, you'll likely need to turn it off during initial lighting and reloads. All of the EPA 2020 approved wood stove models are very efficient and draft related issues can be challenging to detect. Air movement is one such obstacle as well as down drafts appliances, bathroom fans etc.

With this in mind, I'd suggest a remote control able device or perhaps a switch nearby to turn off the ceiling fan briefly during reloads.

As for back of stove appearances, I'd do as suggested, build a half wall and make use of the one side to build your wood rack. You could bring into the cabin 2-3 days of wood and the added conditioning time will help in stove performance.

BKVP
 
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i would do any stove before blaze king they are meant really for the high north , really cold /
they have a low temp system that not work well unless its really cold
 
i would do any stove before blaze king they are meant really for the high north , really cold /
they have a low temp system that not work well unless its really cold
I would disagree completely. BKs thrive in a warmer climate where they can be turned down low most of the time. When it's really cold out a BK has to be turned up and has no advantage.
 
I would disagree completely. BKs thrive in a warmer climate where they can be turned down low most of the time. When it's really cold out a BK has to be turned up and has no advantage.
Thank you. Except, "no advantage" isn't entirely true. The thermostat still, even on "high", meters out the energy within the fuel load. Even heat heat production, for some, is still a plus.

BKVP
 
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i would do any stove before blaze king they are meant really for the high north , really cold /
they have a low temp system that not work well unless its really cold
This is indeed quite wrong.
In fact, there are many BKs running in moderate pacific climates too.
And me on Long Island is not that cold either, and it works fantastic at low outputs (i.e. when it's not that cold). Indeed the thermostat keeps the output even for a long long time, and that output can be dialed down much more than in many other models making the stove ideally suited for warmer climates (too).
 
One thought from a southern wood burner. I’d would not be getting a cat stove. Heatpump and a secondary combustion stove is a great combo. Take last couple weeks as an example. We have had lows in the low 40s where a fire might have been nice but it was up to 60-70 by 2 pm. AC was on yesterday and it will be back down to 39 Wednesday night. You want a nice little fire with pretty flames and then let it go out.

I lake the pacific energy t5. Some days I think a blaze king would be great but most of the time I’m happy to light a small fire or just turn the thermostat up.
Thanks. I believe the Heritage is a hybrid in that it has both a cat and a double burn. From what I've researched you can leave the cat disengaged and it will run in secondary combustion (pls correct me if I'm wrong).
 
Question: Is there something different between the BK thermostat vs the air control on the Heritage or any other long burning stove?
I thought they were the same thing, but it seems like the BK does something different where it can go into a very low and slow burn. Would you not be able to achieve the same results by lowering the fresh air supply on the Heritage?
 
i do not think there is much difference in the air control , but the cat on the bz is very large
and works like a restrictor, very low temp on the flue gases 300-400 degrees I have seen customers run them low then end up with a chimney fire / because they are using a stove meant for very cold
 
Blaze king has a much different air control. It has a bimetallic thermostat that regulates the air coming in which gives you a much longer even heat output that any other stove. Ideal for those not so cold days. Be advised the BK also requires a proper chimney setup and good dry wood for optimal burns.
 
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There are videos on this forum that show how the thermostat works on our product. It is VERY different than a manual damper style air control.

BKVP
 
i do not think there is much difference in the air control , but the cat on the bz is very large
and works like a restrictor, very low temp on the flue gases 300-400 degrees I have seen customers run them low then end up with a chimney fire / because they are using a stove meant for very cold
Please consider limiting your comments to your experience. Your recent posts "from a friends" experience are not at all accurate. While our products do have pluses and minuses (like all products), your observations are not accurate.

Your willingness to share here is appreciated, just so long as the sharing is accurate. Incidentally, your friend is always welcome to join and share their experiences, both positive and negative.

BKVP
 
i do not think there is much difference in the air control , but the cat on the bz is very large
and works like a restrictor, very low temp on the flue gases 300-400 degrees I have seen customers run them low then end up with a chimney fire / because they are using a stove meant for very cold

Why do you keep saying BKs are meant for very cold only? It is not true. If you want to live in a fantasy world that is fine but don't spread your BS to people trying to learn the truth.