Wood Stove into patio propane stove

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Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
Hello all! I got a nice (and rusty) wood stove for free (Vermont Casting, Intrepid model).

Unfortunately, the local codes do not allow me to burn wood in my backyard, so my option would be installing a propane burner(or charcoal), from what I understand.

Some pictures of the stove's state: current

20210508_112941.jpg 20210508_112931.jpg 20210508_112951.jpg

I plan to have it scuff sanded using steel wool and/or a 180 sanding sponge. Remove all grease and wipe it with mineral spirits. After that, applying the tremclad high heat paint flat finish (https://www.rustoleum.ca/en-CA/product-catalog/consumer-brands/tremclad/specialty/high-heat-enamel).

That's the paint that it's available in the nearby stores, and I can apply it over rusty surfaces after the sanding.

The stove also has a little bit of rust inside, but it is not recommended to use this paint in areas exposed to flames. So I am thinking about using a rust converter from rust-check. I am still waiting for their support's answer to see if it could be applied in areas exposed to high heat/flames.

That is the "easy" part. My idea is to use it outside to:
  1. Use as a heat source for people in front of it.
  2. Cook something? At least marshmallows.
  3. Look good.
As I can't burn wood in my backyard, I am thinking about installing a propane pipe burner or an H-shaped one (BBQ burner). The problem is I am not sure if it is possible without heavy modifications. My main concern is where the propane hose will be inserted. Through the flue collar is the more accessible and dumber way, it looks like, for the hose will be REALLY exposed to the flames. Maybe I could use a copper pipe or something and then connect the hose in the pipe OUTSIDE the stove?

I will take pictures of the process and post it here, almost as a guide, if I execute it well.

Any advice, ideas, suggestions, links, or constructive criticism?:)

Thank you very much!
 
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gthomas785

Feeling the Heat
Feb 8, 2020
413
Central MA
I would definitely drill a proper hole for the gas line to come in at the bottom. Pipes above the burner is, as you put it, a dumb idea.

Also make sure the air intake is sufficient for gas. Will you burn it with the door open?
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
87,751
South Puget Sound, WA
Moved to the gas forum for a more targeted response.
 
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Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
I would definitely drill a proper hole for the gas line to come in at the bottom. Pipes above the burner is, as you put it, a dumb idea.

Also make sure the air intake is sufficient for gas. Will you burn it with the door open?
Thank you for the reply.

Yes, I will probably drill a hole somewhere. It will depend on the burner type I end up using: If I use a round one, I will drill a hole in the bottom; if it is an H-shaped one, a hole in the back.

I would burn it with closed doors, if possible. Maybe I remove the glass. The back is opened through (picture below); however, I don't know if it would give the necessary air intake.

In a perfect world, it will be possible to align pipe burners in the ashtray in a position where the flames go through the firebox' slots. But that's a long shot.

20210508_174307.jpg
 

gthomas785

Feeling the Heat
Feb 8, 2020
413
Central MA
I think you'd just end up heating the grate that way and possibly melting it. You need space around and above the burner or it won't burn right. Put the burner on top of the grate and make your pipe hole big enough to get some oxygen. Maybe get some of those fake embers that they put around gas fireplace burners to make it look nicer.
 

Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
Good point. I am thinking about using this one:
20170522161842591.jpg


It was $89 in Amazon, but it is out of stock now. The next "best" price for the same thing is +$200.:-\

Anyway, I started using a steel brush and it looks much better now:
20210508_204547.jpg


I really like the natural color. Because of that, I entered a high heat paint rabbit hole, but I think I will just stick with the tremclad or rust-oleum high heat paint designed for stoves and BBQ, indoors/outdoors.
 

gthomas785

Feeling the Heat
Feb 8, 2020
413
Central MA
High heat stove paint will look good. If you paint it flat black, it will turn dark gray over time after you heat it up. I think you'll like it.
 

Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
I am still working on the stove! No more rust!
But as the high heat paint requires a flame to cure, I want to have the burner ready to go.

I am looking at basically two options (pictures below):

  1. A 12 x 6 inches H-burner without a plate;
  2. A much more expensive h-burner that already comes with a pan.

I plan to place the burner on the bottom of the firebox. For both options, the inlet is at the side, so the plan is to install a 90-degree elbow (pointing down) and drill the bottom of the firebox.

I would be installing the air mixer in the elbow (burner > elbow > air mixer).

Is having a pan a necessity? Could I get away buying the burner with no pan and creating my own (using a metal oven tray)?

Another option would be using a 6 inch round burner with the inlet already at the bottom, but I think the flame would not be as nice.

Any thoughts or corrections?:)

BURNERS:


 

gthomas785

Feeling the Heat
Feb 8, 2020
413
Central MA
You can still paint it and cure it later. It's usually recommended to cure within 30 days but I've waited longer than that and it's been fine. The paint gives off a lot of smoke / stink on the first firing. Since you'll be using it outdoors you don't have to worry about timing it for when you can open the windows.

No idea what purpose the pan serves except to reflect heat and maybe help shape the airflow / convection around the burner. You probably want something to project the heat forward, but I don't think you need that exact pan. Play around with it and see what gives you the most desirable results.
 
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Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
Thanks, gthomas785!

I will buy the cheaper one and see if I can use a steel oven tray as a burner pan, or something like it.

Do you think it is ok to do burner > elbow > air mixer?
 

gthomas785

Feeling the Heat
Feb 8, 2020
413
Central MA
Thanks, gthomas785!

I will buy the cheaper one and see if I can use a steel oven tray as a burner pan, or something like it.

Do you think it is ok to do burner > elbow > air mixer?
If it's a regular Venturi type air inlet then you need a certain amount of straight pipe between the air shutter and the elbow. I don't know how much - it depends on the orifice and tube diameter but I'd guess a few inches. If you put the elbow too close then the turbulence may cause some gas to come out the air inlet and it won't work right.
 
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Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
Hmmm... The burners or kits that I am looking said to use an air mixer when using propane. The air shutter is another system, looks like. Maybe those burners don't have a venturi type air inlet?
 

gthomas785

Feeling the Heat
Feb 8, 2020
413
Central MA
Hmmm... The burners or kits that I am looking said to use an air mixer when using propane. The air shutter is another system, looks like. Maybe those burners don't have a venturi type air inlet?
Well, they all work on the same principle. I really can't think of a problem with having an elbow after the air mixer. Some burners are designed that way.

Seriously though, this whole thing is an untested configuration so I don't think you'll get any definitive answers until you try it. Just set it up outdoors and light it up, if it doesn't perform the way you want then start tweaking.

As my dad would say, "What's the worst that could happen?" :rolleyes:

When working with propane, just be careful not to create "puddle points" where unburned gas can accumulate under the burner since it tends to settle. A few holes drilled right through the bottom of the stove probably wouldn't be a bad idea.
 

Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
A quick update: I tested my propabe burner setup! Looks like it is working!

I chose a firepit/fireplace burner.

I will drill the holes needed in the stive and post as I advance.
20210529_134137.jpg
20210529_134230.jpg
 

Corey

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
2,558
Midwest
Neat to see the project coming along. I think you'll have fun with it and a lot of heat! I'm in the process of doing similar, but with an open fireplace. After dealing with mine for a bit, the only thing that strikes me so far is that your burner looks a little fuel rich. Ideally you'd have blue flames - at least at the base, possibly (likely) tapering a bit to yellow at the tips.

Not a huge deal as this is outside so cabon monoxide issues are minimal. But if you can get more air in the mix, you'll put out more heat with less propane and things won't get sooted up as much. Ideally when you first turn the stove on, you might even think you've ruined the fire effect because the flames will be mostly blue. But as your logs heat up, the flames will take on a nice yellow color.
 

Machete

New Member
May 8, 2021
8
Canada
Neat to see the project coming along. I think you'll have fun with it and a lot of heat! I'm in the process of doing similar, but with an open fireplace. After dealing with mine for a bit, the only thing that strikes me so far is that your burner looks a little fuel rich. Ideally you'd have blue flames - at least at the base, possibly (likely) tapering a bit to yellow at the tips.

Not a huge deal as this is outside so cabon monoxide issues are minimal. But if you can get more air in the mix, you'll put out more heat with less propane and things won't get sooted up as much. Ideally when you first turn the stove on, you might even think you've ruined the fire effect because the flames will be mostly blue. But as your logs heat up, the flames will take on a nice yellow color.
Thanks for the feedback!

I will try tweaking the air mixer a little bit then. Maybe it is because it was not straight up as it should when I tested.
That being said, the burner is a firepit/fireplace one, and they say that it is supposed to have a more yellow flame.

I managed to drill two holes for the line using a hole saw. I am glad to say that it was easier than I was expecting (usually is the other way around).

Some pictures:

20210606_181450.jpg

20210606_190706.jpg

20210606_185314.jpg

20210606_185320.jpg

20210606_185923.jpg

20210606_185948.jpg

20210606_191116.jpg

20210606_191125.jpg


That's it for now! Next steps are brush it a little bit more to remove any remaining rust, and paint it! 20210606_185320.jpg