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Back to wood heat in shop

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#1 Gtractor ONLINE  


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Posted November 28, 2015 - 11:19 PM

Many years ago I heated the shop with wood but I didn't like babysitting the stove.  Really didn't have a place to cut wood plus its hard to regulate the draft on the old boxwood stove I used back then.  Switched to propane with a room heater I got out of the dump from a house that was being torn down to make way for an auto shop.  Got along great for many years with that setup.  In recent years my propane supplier really rips people off with the 100 pound cylinders.  They must want to phaze them out so as to not have to mess with them.  $95 to fill the cylinder and thats approx. 33 gallon of propane.  CRAZY high! 

Im a tightwad!

So this year I went back to wood heat for the shop.  There are several dead trees around here that need removed anyhow so its a win/win situation. 

You'll never guess where I found this wood stove.  The city dump.  It was rotted out around the back and needed some TLC,  but it was free.  Here it is before I started.


wood stove 1.jpg


This was just laying out back for at least a decade exposed to the weather.  I know that didn't help it but the cast parts aren't going to rot out anyhow.   Once I got it in the shop and looked-er over good I could see all the seams were rusting and pushing apart where it'd be hard to control the draft.  I took every joint apart and cleaned the mating surfaces. 


wood stove 2.jpg


With new bolts it went back together and sealed nicely.  All the years I was growing up we had an oval shaped stove in our house almost identical to this one.  Only difference is this one doesn't have the glass in the door so you can't see the flame without opening the door.  I used left over 20 gauge sheet metal from another project.  In the rear center of the stoves sheetmetal there was a cast iron piece that bolted directly to the sheetmetal to keep the concentration of heat off the sheetmetal.  it was in bad shape and VERY heavy so I left it out.  Won't know for a season or two if that was a good idea or not.  Being so heavy it would likely warp the sheetmetal and cause problems.  The nearly identical stove we heated our house with didn't have that piece.  Here is the new sheet ready for the front to be installed.


wood stove 3.jpg


I didn't take a pic of the finished product but today was its trial run.  My shop is 14 X 24 feet old wooden one car garage with not much insulation. The roof has some but nothing on the walls and the swing out style doors are impossible to seal.  When its real cold or windy out I hang a heavy canvas tarp over the drive in doors.  There is also a walk in door that is drafty and the building has a couple of windows.  I installed very nice double pane windows a few years back.  Take a wild guess where I got them?  Yup,  The city dump. 

Anyhow,  my wood is kind of wet from recent rains so I had to keep the vents open and keep the fire up just to keep it burning today.  It was mid 30's [F] and no wind today.  80 degrees inside the shop.  had to open the walk in door some.   Once my wood supply dries out I can regulate the heat much better. 

If I remember, I'll get a pic of the finished product installed tomorrow. 

Edited by Gtractor, November 28, 2015 - 11:24 PM.

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#2 Eric OFFLINE  

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Posted November 28, 2015 - 11:40 PM

I also heat our house and barn with wood, we live on 8 acres and own another 47 for hardwood harvesting so I think I will make it through at least my lifetime! I love wood heat, both the cutting and burning, always respect the man with an Axe and time on his hands. Nice dump finds indeed, looks like my grandmother's old coal fired stove a bit I miss the old coal shoot, as a kid it was that oddity that drew my attention. Now to build a harvester out of an old tractor and stuff, then I will be on the path to heat freedom. Good luck with staying warm, you have my respect and welcome to the club!
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#3 propane1 ONLINE  

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Posted November 29, 2015 - 12:31 AM

Gotta like wood heat and the exercise that comes with it. I also burn some coal. I only use it in my shop, the wood and coal. Propane in the house, if I could get rid of the propane, I would. Noel
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#4 boyscout862 ONLINE  

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Posted November 29, 2015 - 01:33 AM

I heat my house with passive solar and wood for backup. I haven't started a fire yet this fall but I expect that the time is soon. Couple of little facts: a cord of hardwood is about equal to 200 gallons of heating oil, an acre of hardwood trees should yield about a half cord of wood per year without damaging the woods. Good Luck, Rick
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#5 holdenboy1960 OFFLINE  

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Posted November 29, 2015 - 06:11 AM

you just can not beat wood warmth ,next you will have ya bed in there just to cosie lol. i love my stove heater in my hut nothing like it in winter,


you should get a stainless steel kettle & set on top for fresh coffee or tea  , i have 2 kettles on mine but i have a grid plate off an gas stove to set the kettles on so they don't boil to hard 


but i have also got the copper pipe coil on the stack for hot water for winter baths 



Edited by holdenboy1960, November 29, 2015 - 06:15 AM.

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#6 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted November 29, 2015 - 08:24 AM

I agree with all you guys, wood heat is the best.  I heat the house mainly with a multi-fuel stove using a shelled corn and wood pellet mix.  Cost of pellets is going up as is corn price so that may slow down.  Have a wood fireplace in the corner of the open living, dinning, kitchen area.  If there is a little bit of wind for draft it works real good and can get it up over 70 real easy.  No wind have to burn a higher fire to keep it going.  I don't work in the shop much when it is real cold.  Have a kerosene forced air heater I use in there just to knock the chill off.  At $4.75 a gallon for fuel it is not used much  I could run diesel in it but that don't burn as clean.  Have propane in the house more for backup.  Started with a full tank in Sept of 2014 and have 40% left so that will run through this winter.  Have a good supply of Oak and Walnut on hand so good there too, unless it gets buried in snow..  Dummy me I didn't cover the un-split pile so it is wet now.  Mostly Oak.  Holds water good but dries out fairly fast after it is split.

Edited by chieffan, November 29, 2015 - 08:26 AM.

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#7 Gtractor ONLINE  


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Posted November 29, 2015 - 10:56 PM

It was 90 degrees in the shop today.   :wallbanging:   Thought I'd melt.  When I get some dry wood It'll be much better.  I have 220 wired in and a 4800 watt heater so when its too warm for the wood heat [like today] I can run the electric.   The stove is only about 20 inches from the wall so I split an old fuel barrel and unrolled it to go around the stove to keep the wall from getting too hot.  Barrel was stiffer than I figured so liked to not got it straightened out but kept at it.  Tough stuff!!.   Used it as a burn barrel for many years until the bottom rotted out so never thought it'd be that hard to bend.  Spaced the barrel out from the wood of the wall because I know it'll get hot too.  Won't be heating the shop unless I'm out there.  The fan is supposed to keep air flowing around the hottest part of the stove moving the worst of the heat away.  This fan pictured doesn't move much air but I have a bigger fan I'll switch it out for.  It was raining all day and I didn't want to trekk out to the other shed to get the bigger fan.  I

 I think when it actually gets cold enough to need some heat this will work well. 

I wanted to build a box outside for the stove and pipe the warm air in through the window that the chimney goes out of currently.  Be much easier to regulate the heat that way. Want it on a trailer mount too so I can wheel it to the house if the power goes out for an extended time - or the furnace dies alltogether.  I have a couple small generators that will run the furnace [BTDT already] or a fan to circulate air during a power outtage.

Maybe I'll get that insulated outside box for the stove done by next year......  I have the material.  It was a walk-in cooler in a convience store at one time.  VERY nicely insulated but gotta cut it down quite a bit.  

Yes,  the metal needed to be a little higher but then I couldn't get the doors open on the cabinets.


wood stove 4.jpg

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#8 grnspot110 ONLINE  



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Posted November 30, 2015 - 07:15 AM

I used to use wood in the house, but don't anymore.  I've used wood heat in my 14' x 20' shop since it was new over 30 years ago,  HPIM2994 (2).JPG

I prefer a jacketed space heater, replaced this one (which was burning out) with one I found on CL  HPIM2997.JPG  The one I have now hadn't been used much, but looked pretty beat up on the outside.  A couple hours with a rubber mallet & some new bolts brought it back into shape!  It's the fourth stove since the shop was new, All were used stoves.  I let the insurance company put in a new insulated flue pipe while re-roofing our buildings after last year's hail storm.  I keep a fire in it all winter.  I do spend a lot of time with the door open, also have a fan in the cupola, which I can close off with a sliding door.

I've got over two year's supply of mixed wood at home;  HPIM3184.JPG  And an endless supply at the farm!

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#9 Chopperhed OFFLINE  

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Posted December 04, 2015 - 04:37 PM

Being in the city, living where I do, I can only use natural gas in the house.

I heat my shop with a combination of electric and propane. Its 22 x 26 feet
I use a Honeywell 1500 watt 120V electric heater just to keep it even, and I have a 75000 BTU construction heater for when it gets chilly.

The electric heater running 6 am to 9 pm has been keeping it around 15C 59F for a while. but it hasn't been really cold yet, soon enough I'll have to run the electric 24-7 and use propane Elaine for when it gets chilly. I never run the propane heater for more than 10 minutes or so, as it heats things up pretty quickly.

I also have 90 gallons of water in barrels as thermal mass, it helps hold summer time heat for winter. Having a lot of Iron and steel helps too, my shop get's chilly when it's been empty a while.
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#10 KennyP ONLINE  



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Posted December 04, 2015 - 05:05 PM

I'm making a small wood burner out of a 35 gallon drum. I'm not going to use it for major heat, just to get the chill off. Small fire to warm the tools up to use. If it's 60 in there, I'll be happy!

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#11 shorty ONLINE  



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Posted December 04, 2015 - 05:22 PM

I'm making a small wood burner out of a 35 gallon drum. I'm not going to use it for major heat, just to get the chill off. Small fire to warm the tools up to use. If it's 60 in there, I'll be happy!

That will be nice. Its a lot more fun to tinker when you are not freezing.
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#12 Lauber1 OFFLINE  


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Posted December 05, 2015 - 12:38 AM

you got enough hedge trees down there to burn for the next 10 yrs, but you might want to put the cast part back into the furnace. I need to get my wood burner going again its all in pieces.


They got lp down to less than a buck a gal now so maybe I need to look more into using the gas furnace like I used to. Our bottles of 100# went over that price a few yrs back and I just quit using the furnace.  

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#13 Gtractor ONLINE  


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Posted December 05, 2015 - 10:02 AM

Hope to avoid the hedge.  My chainsaw would have a hernia trying to cut that stuff and I know I can't split any of it.   With such a small building, elm is probably the best to use, at least with what I have available. 

If the cast piece was in better shape I'd sure put it back but it had a good-size hole in it and when I took the first bolt out it broke in two from its own weight.  Still, I been thinking about some kind of baffle to divert the worst of the heat inside the stove. 


Been too warm for nearly a week now to even light the stove.  Guess I won't complian about that!  I know winter is coming.  Got the shop all cleaned out and ready for a winter project.  Likely start on the Utilitor.  Think its problem is in the wrist pin.  Definately taking the piston out of the bore this time. 

Then I gotta make some sort of progress on the Model T. 

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#14 Jazz OFFLINE  

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Posted December 11, 2015 - 01:43 PM

I been doing little but keeping fire on in garage when on the weekend my son pointed out crack in stove. I phoned vendor and followed up with pictures. He said it is indeed very rare but stove is guaranteed for life and it will be taken care of. It's a Pacific Energy stove,,74% efficient. Burns very little wood compared to the old wood burner I had previously. This stove only has to be 14" from wall and rated 60,000 BTU. The stove is 7 years old,,had I not phoned vendor I would have just welded it up

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#15 Gtractor ONLINE  


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Posted December 11, 2015 - 02:37 PM

Are those sledge hammer marks there by the crack?  :poke:


Glad the manufacturer is going to stand behind their product.  Kinda rare these days