2020-2021 First firewood foray finally finished

Discussion in 'The Wood Pile' started by SilentHatch, Oct 17, 2020.

  1. SilentHatch

    SilentHatch

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2020
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    ME, USA
    Greetings all, I'm new to the forums and this is my first foray into heating with firewood since we bought the house in 2019. Hope you all enjoy this quick write-up. :salute:

    Wife and I are supplementing the oil furnace with 1 cord this winter only on the nights below 20F, but it seems like she's okay with the idea of buying more wood to season for next year. Paid $300 delivered for a cord of 7-10 month "seasoned" wood from a local woodyard near me. We did this for two reasons; 1) I haven't got the time to spend on this at this point in my career, and 2) the time benefit of being with family is well worth the 9 hours at work to earn the $ to pay for the wood delivery. :emptywallet:

    I hear you! Enough talking, more pictures. I'll try to put a blurb with each one if I can figure this out.

    Here's our under-decking storage, taking care not to block emergency window egress, and not covering up the old secondary washer drainage pipe (white pvc). You can just see my inherited Generac 3500XL generator off in the back.
    PXL_20201012_205727932.jpg

    Same picture, angled down. Pallets are from right-front to back-left, 3'x5', 3'x5', 2'x4'.
    PXL_20201012_205715257.jpg

    Here's our firewood delivered, guy showed up in a F250 dump-body.
    PXL_20201014_133905875.jpg

    Other angle. From here you can see the pallets under the deck and the door into the basement. There's three doors here (screen, exterior door, interior door) so I'm stacking it close so I have less distance to travel from stack to basement. PXL_20201014_133915841.jpg

    Here's the final stack from that pile, 4 rows deep. Also, it's really windy through here because we're only about 2 miles from the ocean, so the wind through this area is constant. Makes it tough to cook on the grill ON the deck!
    PXL_20201014_163254445.jpg

    And we had some overflow, so I put down another 4'x4' pallet on the other side of the lawn tractor storage area to finish stacking. It was about this point in stacking that we had realized that our backs were numb from stacking so we grabbed the canvas stool (green in above picture, bottom right) and used those to sit in while stacking. Much better! Small stack of kindling between the post and the pallet from the cleanup of the dump pile, that will be used to supplement the small rack by the wood stove.
    PXL_20201014_163246801.jpg

    And my wife filled up the in-basement storage shown below. I haven't got the measuring tape out, but amazon reviews said "near 1/4 cord" but that looks like less, based on the amount I have under the deck.
    PXL_20201014_174747452.jpg

    Here's the beast in question, with some kindling and paper storage while you sit and feed. This is an original Atlanta Stove Works Woodsman wood stove, and in this picture you can see the new gasket I applied for the door. There's no windows on this wood stove, just the three knobs for vents on the front. You'll also see on top of the wood stove, I've got the $30 heat-powered fan from amazon, and a cast-iron pot to fill with water for humidifying that we picked up from Tractor Supply Co. for $21. The small hatchet at the bottom of the hearth is what I've been using to split apart the pallet wood that we use for kindling, but may be replacing that with a different device soon.
    For those that are curious how this wood stove burns, note the small handle on the upper back-right of the stove (look just below the elbow in flue).. That opens/closes a rear vent to allow fast venting of smoke for startup or log addition to stove. Once fire or logs are going, with door closed, you flip that handle vertical, it closes the rear vent, and now all smoke comes towards the front of the upper portion above the door before proceeding back and up the flue. This allows for more heat retention in the wood stove, and thus more heat in the house. Adjust vents as needed to allow optimal burning of wood.
    I haven't gotten the wood stove really cooking yet, just warmed up the basement and first floor while burning up the leftover scraps from the firewood delivery.
    PXL_20201014_174740016.jpg

    And since this is the Firewood Hoarders Club, it would be rude of me not to show you the inside of my wood stove after we vacuumed it out with the ash vac. Feast your eyes upon the internals. Both ceramic heat reflectors are in good condition, and we did the best we could on cleaning it out.
    PXL_20201014_170109266.jpg


    I'm willing to take any constructive criticism you all can share. Also, lawn tractor is stored under deck because I haven't had a chance to buy a new shed yet, but that's in the works. Still need to decide how much of the garden I want to rip out to make room for the shed, or if I want to move the shed and remove some arborvitae plants for that instead. Either way, shed will have a garage door on it so I can just drive out.

    If any of you folks have any experience with this stove, please share, and let me know if I should be looking at having another cord or half-cord delivered for backup... really interested in reducing our dependence on the oil furnace, but the wood stove in the basement seems like a tough way to heat the second floor! :rofl: :lol:

    Thanks to all for reading, and happy to soak up much information from you all on these forums. Looking forward to being a better hoarder in the future!
     
  2. sirbuildalot

    sirbuildalot

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2019
    Messages:
    1,528
    Likes Received:
    10,973
    Location:
    Mass
    Welcome aboard!!! Lots of great advice and knowledgeable members here. Plan on getting on a three year plan and you’ll never worry about unseasoned wood again. Once you know what you burn a season it will be easy to determine how much you need.
     
  3. SilentHatch

    SilentHatch

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2020
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    ME, USA
    Thank you! Looking forward to burning. We spent about $900 in oil last winter, and turned off the heat in April, only just turned it on a couple weeks ago. I've read about the three year plan but I don't think that's happening in this house, perhaps in the next one when we build it in a few years. Plus it's mandatory for that next house that we have enough land (way more than current) to store the firewood for the three-year plan.
     
  4. Chvymn99

    Chvymn99

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2013
    Messages:
    13,181
    Likes Received:
    59,377
    Location:
    KC Metro
  5. Stinny

    Stinny

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2013
    Messages:
    13,557
    Likes Received:
    56,533
    Location:
    western Maine
    Welcome to FHC SilentHatch ... sounds familiar. Our main heat is oil too, and we have a wood stove in the basement to help out. Works well.
     
  6. billb3

    billb3

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2013
    Messages:
    7,343
    Likes Received:
    38,505
    Location:
    SE Mass
    You'll find room once you get infected with the hoarding disorder.
     
  7. SilentHatch

    SilentHatch

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2020
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    ME, USA
    I put myself on the map Stinny if you're interested in seeing how close we are to each other! I've got family in a few towns around where you live, but I'm quite a bit further south, about an hour and a half or so.
     
  8. Bill2

    Bill2

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2019
    Messages:
    95
    Likes Received:
    592
    Location:
    New hampshire
    Welcome to the Club. You'll get a lot of great advice here.
     
  9. GrJfer

    GrJfer

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2014
    Messages:
    1,766
    Likes Received:
    10,874
    Location:
    The Woods of Arkansas
    Welcome to the land of BTU's. Learn as you can, and burn as you can.
     
  10. Chris F

    Chris F

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    1,017
    Likes Received:
    6,816
    Location:
    Micksburg, Ontario
    Welcome SilentHatch, and that was quite a good introductory post :salute:
     
  11. amateur cutter

    amateur cutter

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2013
    Messages:
    3,221
    Likes Received:
    26,321
    Location:
    Gun Lake MI
    Welcome aboard SilentHatch ! Glad to have you here for sure. I will not offer any "constructive criticism" , but a fair warning. Once your family realizes just how warm wood heat really is you'll be burning more than at just sub 20F. You may wish to check with your supplier as to how much dry wood he has available. Great post & nice pictures! May you have a warm Winter whatever the weather.
     
  12. SilentHatch

    SilentHatch

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2020
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    ME, USA
    amateur cutter
    I think that may happen as well once we get going, but I was talking to a family member today and they mentioned that they know a guy who keeps over 100 cords of seasoned wood to sell in a garage thing, with way more green and partly seasoned stuff for about $50 less than I paid (delivered).. so I may reach out to him once we start getting the wood stove going.
    But it would probably behoove me to reach out now so I'm not stacking a cord of wood when it is 20F or lower...



    And thank you all for the warm welcome! Glad to be here and learn!
     
  13. Horkn

    Horkn

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2014
    Messages:
    20,861
    Likes Received:
    113,148
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Yes, yes he will.

    Welcome to FHC SilentHatch !

    If you only plan on burning a cord a year, you can easily get on the 2 year plan when you make that shed for the lawn mower about 2-3 times bigger. :thumbs:


    I know. We're enablers here.
     
  14. Warner

    Warner

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2017
    Messages:
    2,433
    Likes Received:
    15,571
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Welcome, since you know you are not burning the driest of wood it would be a good idea to keep an eye on the chimney for creosote build up. Plan on cleaning it half way through the season.

    I have my stove in the (unfinished) basement as well. I find that it’s best to light the fire and keep it going rather than light a fire here and there. It looks like you are working with a finished space so you probly won’t have as much heat loss.
     
  15. SilentHatch

    SilentHatch

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2020
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    ME, USA

    Thank you for the advice! We've got our annual chimney cleaner coming a few days after Christmas, they checked out the flue last year and we haven't burned until just a few days ago. I have a magnetic flue thermometer so I will absolutely keep an eye on that, lately been able to keep it around 400 before it goes up the chimney.

    Correct, the basement is 75% finished, but it still takes a while for the walls to heat up - I will probably keep an eye on the temps for a 10 day period, as it tends to stay cold once we get cold! Good advice also!




    I was actually discussing with the wife yesterday where in the garden we could plop down another cord, and she said let's wait a couple weeks...:coldfire:
     
  16. Maina

    Maina

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2018
    Messages:
    1,508
    Likes Received:
    10,595
    Location:
    Maine
    Welcome SilentHatch
    There are a few dealers in southern
    Maine that sell kiln dried firewood. I bought 2 cord each of the last 2 years while I was building up my 3 year plan hoard. I paid $335 per cord delivered from these guys. http://www.daylogging.com/firewood/
    It’s
    well worth the extra money to burn truly dry wood. The amount of heat you get is much better considering you’re not wasting btu’s boiling off water. I see Day’s is sold out but an online search will pull up other options, or maybe for next year.
    Nice little stove btw, haven’t seen one of those in awhile but they put out some good heat.
     
  17. Skier76

    Skier76

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2014
    Messages:
    691
    Likes Received:
    3,466
    Location:
    CT and SoVT
    Welcome aboard! The first year burning is always a bit of trial and error with the stove and the wood.

    You may want to split some of those larger splits in half. I've found in my stove, smaller splits tend to do better. Again, it's all about trial and error.
     
  18. SilentHatch

    SilentHatch

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2020
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    ME, USA

    Thank you for the website!
    I had been looking at Honest Cords Firewood but they sold out of seasoned. He's got green, scraps, and consistent size leftovers, but I don't have the space or time to season that currently. I will take a look around for some kiln dried, I had previously only seen the guys out in Somersworth, NH area doing that but it was getting up into the $500 per cord range by the time I was looking at delivery (10-20% delivery charge).

    Glad to see there are a few folks from around here that are into woodburning!

    Thanks for compliment on wood stove, it's original to the house, and it sure does put off some good heat!

    Question, should I clean out my ash between each fire or once or twice a week? This thing has been awesome in burning darn near everything down to a powder so far.
     
  19. billb3

    billb3

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2013
    Messages:
    7,343
    Likes Received:
    38,505
    Location:
    SE Mass
    Many believe an inch or two of ash helps the fire.
    I had a stove once that recommended sand in the bottom as there were no firebricks.
    Even with a smaller stove with not a lot of height to the firebox which impacts load size I often put it off until it is starting to block the "doghouse" air, sometimes even pushing the ash to the side if it is so cold I really don't want to let the stove go cold to <easily> scoop out ash. Making a coals rake has been on my to do list for quite a while.
     
  20. MikeInMa

    MikeInMa

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2016
    Messages:
    5,405
    Likes Received:
    38,537
    Location:
    Southern Worcester county
    I think your
    First firewood foray finally finished, is fantastic. :cool: