Woodstove for Off Grid - first timer

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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,415
South Puget Sound, WA
That is reassuring to hear that the T6 door shouldn’t be a battle. I swung the trivet tops out with no issue, but the door I tried at least 20 times, giving it every ounce of strength in me. The salesman had white knuckles and his hand shook a little when he did it, but he said it’s fine and there is nothing to improve. I’m not sure what the v notch is? I wish there could have been more productive discussion today when I asked why it was so challenging, because if there was a way to make it work I’d get the T6.

I have torn ligaments in both hands, unfortunately no it isn’t temporary. I feel like this is strange to say out loud so please don’t judge me but I am a female, so my hope is that I find a likeminded partner who is already interested in this lifestyle and wouldn’t mind being the wood splitter :) Of course I wish my hands were more capable, it’s incredibly frustrating they can’t do more. For now I’ll be ordering cords of seasoned wood and only using the stove by myself on occasion or during power outages etc.
Sorry to hear about the torn ligaments, they heal very slowly. And no reason to apologize. @Dix will be by sometime to greet you to the stove burning sisterhood.

The latch on the T6 is as simple as a fence latch. The roller on the door handle drops into a slot that gets narrower toward the bottom. Somehow during shipping the steel tab got bent in too much. The adjustment will be just bending it out a little. Takes about 5 seconds if one knows what one is doing. It just takes a little tweak to make a notable difference. If it's too loose it just gets a tap with a hammer. At first I thought it was too basic, but it has stood up well over 12 yrs and I have only adjusted it when the door gasket was gettin old. And then once again when I put in a fresh gasket. The whole stove is built this way, on the KISS principle. It keeps maintenance to a minimum.

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Dave_in_ABQ

Member
Oct 27, 2021
81
New Mexico
I'll add that I looked at a new Alderlea T6 in the store and found the door tight but not difficult to close.
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
On my T5 the latch was adjusted properly, but needed lubrication. It's a simple lever, but if it doesn't want to move, it'll make closing the door difficult. Just saying before bending metal, make sure the other side is working right.
 

Woodsplitter67

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2017
2,081
Woolwich nj
One of the things I believe that has been missed is wood and wood storage. Often wood is second to getting the stove. Of your considering on getting a stove and living more off grid your going to need to get wood now and start seasoning. You should plan on getting 3 years ahead. Most people burn 3 to 5 cords in an average house with good insulation. Your going to need to store this wood

With out dry seasoned wood your burning experience will be less then enjoyable. You will not get the advertised burn times and heat no matter what stove you purchase
Cat stoves aren't just an epa thing, yes it will burn cleaner which is not a bad thing, but the advantages are a more even heat and that ability to burn clean at low temperatures which you will appreciate in shoulder season. The cost of the cat is not like a car thousands of dollars.. it will run around 2 to 350 ish depending on stove but you get years out of them
 
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Todd

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
9,513
NW Wisconsin
I have the Jotul F45 that is the same stove as the F55 just a bit smaller. I’ve been off grid for 3 years now and the F45 has performed great. easy operation. long burns, and clean glass. I really like the concept of these cast iron shroud surrounding a steel firebox, they give off a good even softer heat verses a strong searing radiant heat. The F55 would probably be a good fit for 2000 sq ft in your area. Don’t worry about the rear vent, the stoves flue collar can be set up either top or rear, it’s adjustable.

I also like the T6 it’s very similar to the F55 in performance and IMO a better looker. The door shouldn’t be that difficult, probably needs an adjustment.

I’ve burned cat stoves for many years and really liked them but they do take a little more maintenance and are a little more involved in operating them. if you burn a cat stove 24/7 you’ll prolly need a replacement every 2-3 years with a $200-300 cost and I expect that cost to rise in the future.
 

all night moe

Member
Nov 19, 2015
94
earth
He can burn half the wood in a newer EPA stove with dry seasoned wood. My friend had that stove and served him well for many years but used to go through 6-7 cords a year. My house is bigger and only use 4 cords. A newer EPA stove is the way to go.
Yes, I am aware of this. I mentioned this stove for the cost and using the savings for getting more wood this late in the season.
I also mentioned this stove because the OP mentioned she was leaning towards a non cat. Since she is off grid that may be beneficial for less than fully seasoned splits.

For the record, I am looking to put a second stove in the front of this house and I do want a cat stove. Leaning towards a BK or one of the soapstone stoves. I am also researching for building my own OWB gasifier.
 
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ispinwool

Feeling the Heat
Feb 5, 2010
270
Butler County, Pa.
@OffGridGoals and there's me too! Hello and welcome to the "Sisterhood of the Burning Embers"!

There are many ways to heat with wood. Hubby and I both have buggered-up shoulder joints and I have a bum knee--we do
our best with what we have. We get our wood for free but our gas powered log splitter cost some funds...but neither
of us should be chopping wood. So it's a trade-off.

Brew yourself a cuppa and read through the site--it's a wealth of information freely given!==c

p.s.--I don't know how long your ligaments have been damaged but, given time, they may heal. When I first damaged my
shoulder about 3 years ago, I couldn't lift a cup of coffee to drink it. Now I'm almost back to normal...but don't want to risk messing
it up again.
 

Prof

Minister of Fire
Oct 18, 2011
610
Western PA
I'm not off the grid, but wouldn't be in a bad position in a STF situation. I'll throw my 2 cents in about the PE Summit. I have a PE Summit in my basement which provides 1/2 of the heat for my house. It does have heat shields on the sides, so the heat isn't as harsh as you might fear. It not a cast/jacketed stove, but I am sitting about 12 ft from it now as I type and am quite comfortable (actually just woke from a nap). One great thing about the Summit is the large surface area on the top. I cook 200 plus meals on it a year--made a huge pot of turkey/rice soup just yesterday and fried eggs for the family for today's breakfast. If I was off the grid completely this would be a huge asset. It is as close to bullet-proof as modern stoves come. Very simple. We are on year seven with it; without any problems. With dry wood, I'm not sure I would ever need to clean the chimney. I do every two years anyway, but get less than a coffee cup of creosote.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,415
South Puget Sound, WA
The Summit is the T6 without the cladding and trivits on top.
Yes, the Summit has the same internal firebox as the T6. The stove body is porcelain steel jacketed instead of cast iron. There is a removable grille on top for indirect cooking or for direct contact with the stovetop if removed. However, this does not expose the large area that the swing-away trivets do.
 

Prof

Minister of Fire
Oct 18, 2011
610
Western PA
Yes, the Summit has the same internal firebox as the T6. The stove body is porcelain steel jacketed instead of cast iron. There is a removable grille on top for indirect cooking or for direct contact with the stovetop if removed. However, this does not expose the large area that the swing-away trivets do.
I think we are talking about different summits. Are you referring to the Summit classic? The full steel summit like I have has a much larger cooking surface. I use some trivets for low heat/simmer.
 

marty319

Feeling the Heat
Nov 17, 2014
432
Belair mb
That is reassuring to hear that the T6 door shouldn’t be a battle. I swung the trivet tops out with no issue, but the door I tried at least 20 times, giving it every ounce of strength in me. The salesman had white knuckles and his hand shook a little when he did it, but he said it’s fine and there is nothing to improve. I’m not sure what the v notch is? I wish there could have been more productive discussion today when I asked why it was so challenging, because if there was a way to make it work I’d get the T6.

I have torn ligaments in both hands, unfortunately no it isn’t temporary. I feel like this is strange to say out loud so please don’t judge me but I am a female, so my hope is that I find a likeminded partner who is already interested in this lifestyle and wouldn’t mind being the wood splitter :) Of course I wish my hands were more capable, it’s incredibly frustrating they can’t do more. For now I’ll be ordering cords of seasoned wood and only using the stove by myself on occasion or during power outages etc.
Pick me lol
 

bigealta

Feeling the Heat
May 22, 2010
350
Utah, NJ
Is the chimney already set up in your space? Or do you need to have one installed?
 

Dix

Minister of Fire
May 27, 2008
6,481
Long Island, NY
*Flies in, parks broom* ;)

Welcome to the forums!!!

Always nice to see another Sistah here !!

I can't give much advice on the stoves, but I'm partial to PE. Insert w/ original baffle still strong after 13 years, with annual maintenance. Can't complain.

My top advice is...

DO NOT DELAY>>> GET FIREWOOD NOW !!!
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,415
South Puget Sound, WA
I think we are talking about different summits. Are you referring to the Summit classic? The full steel summit like I have has a much larger cooking surface. I use some trivets for low heat/simmer.
Yes, my bad. I have my friend's Summit Classic in mind. That's the one I see most often. Black porcelain with the nickel trim.
 
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ispinwool

Feeling the Heat
Feb 5, 2010
270
Butler County, Pa.
I'm not off the grid, but wouldn't be in a bad position in a STF situation. I'll throw my 2 cents in about the PE Summit. I have a PE Summit in my basement which provides 1/2 of the heat for my house. It does have heat shields on the sides, so the heat isn't as harsh as you might fear. It not a cast/jacketed stove, but I am sitting about 12 ft from it now as I type and am quite comfortable (actually just woke from a nap). One great thing about the Summit is the large surface area on the top. I cook 200 plus meals on it a year--made a huge pot of turkey/rice soup just yesterday and fried eggs for the family for today's breakfast. If I was off the grid completely this would be a huge asset. It is as close to bullet-proof as modern stoves come. Very simple. We are on year seven with it; without any problems. With dry wood, I'm not sure I would ever need to clean the chimney. I do every two years anyway, but get less than a coffee cup of creosote.
We "accidentally" purchased our Hearthstone Heritage (it's a long story) ...we love it but it wasn't very long afterwards that I came to wish we'd gotten a 'cook stove type' of wood stove.
Oh well. 🤷
 
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ispinwool

Feeling the Heat
Feb 5, 2010
270
Butler County, Pa.
*Flies in, parks broom* ;)

Welcome to the forums!!!

Always nice to see another Sistah here !!

I can't give much advice on the stoves, but I'm partial to PE. Insert w/ original baffle still strong after 13 years, with annual maintenance. Can't complain.

My top advice is...

DO NOT DELAY>>> GET FIREWOOD NOW !!!

What a coincidence! I also use a broom!😁

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