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Old 10-24-2005, 09:59 PM   #1
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Wood stove Questions?

Hello All!

I own and have travelled and lived short term in a converted 85 full size bluebird gmc bus. Now I am in the process of rebuilding the bus. Anyways...

The next step is to spend the winter gathering supplies for the build in the spring and I am looking for suggestions on wood stoves. I would like to find somthing used, small(ish), safe and under $200.

I am hoping to find somthing used here and am wondering what to look for. Please Help

I would like somthing that I can cook on in the colder months. Their will be a catalytic propane back up, however I do not want this as our main source of heat. Should I get bigger than I think we'll need or somthing small like a marine style unit?

We may be living in the bus next winter and I would like to stay married

So, I need your collective assistance.

PS. Does anyone have thoughts on the use of a domestic fridge as a primary fridge and building water tanks?

pps. I have seen number of conversions (mostly older) that are using a domestic gas stove in their buses. I am asuming they are running off propane. Does anyone have any thoughts on this option other than the size and weight?

-Richard
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Old 10-25-2005, 12:42 AM   #2
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Northern Tool has quite a few wood stoves at reasonable prices. Many of them are larger though. When my wife and I got our house we decided to install a wood stove for heat since the house had elctric. THe stove was a smaller one and I did not care for it. I always had to cut the wood really small so it would fit. So if you can fit a larger stove I would get one. Another thing that bugged me about the stove we had was it had a glass window in the front. The glass always got coated with soot and it made me nervious when a burning log would fall against the glass. You also should consider getting a stove that is designed for mobile home use since they draw the combustion air from outside. You could always rig up a fresh air vent for any stove though.

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/ ... 122+766841
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Old 10-25-2005, 06:49 PM   #3
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Forgive me if my understanding is off, but it is the "airtight" models that require a seperate fresh air intake (with can be used in a bus - soused moose did a great looking job) and a traditional stove draws air from the room it is in.

I had been thinking the smaller the better, but your point about the size of the wood is a good suggestion.

I was looking in the local used paper and there seemed to be a number of free standing wood stoves for under $150.

So what else should I be looking for? Seals, rust, general stability and a place for cooking are what I am currently looking at. However additional info would be an asset.

Thanks in advance.

-Richard Haworth
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Old 10-25-2005, 07:48 PM   #4
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I'm debating installing a wood stove. Hate to give up the space, and worry about whether it's going to prevent me from finding places to park the bus in the future.

Here's an interesting stove installation link related to mobile home installations http://www.mygreathome.com/fix-it_guide/woodstove.htm

Oh, and plus, I can't find a cheap one that has provision for outside air inlet. The little Vogelzang Boxwood model that costs about $100 would be fine, but it isn't supposed to be used in a mobile home. I'm more concerned about the sucking-all-the-hot-air-out-of-the-bus-to-burn-the-wood problem than I am with installation issues, which I could overcome.
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Old 10-25-2005, 11:48 PM   #5
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The "air tight" stove we had had a fixed air inlet. They did this so the flippin thing would meet the EPA standards. If you wanted a damper to control the fire you had to install one in the flue pipe. I did not like that idea so I got some scrap metal and made my own damper in the stove. Air tight stoves are the type that don't have gaps in the construction like an old pot belly where you have to seal it with cement. THe air tight models are usually welded with a rope gasket in the door. There are lots of stoves out there and different manfacturers. You will have to look at the stove to see if it can easily be adapted to bring fresh air in. You can always put a fresh air grill right in front of the stove to provide air. When I would damper our stove down it hardly used any air and it would burn 10 hours on a coule small logs.

You might also consider a pellet stove if you have some electricity available. I have seen them in the paper for cheap. Usually they have a burned out auger motor which can always be replaced or repaired. I like the idea of a pellet stove because they can hold quite a bit of fuel and can be vented out the side.

I would look for a welded steel stove vs cast iron. Cast iron tends to crack and I would hate to hit the brakes hard and have the feet crack around the bolts and the stove hit me. A steel stove would be more durable in a mobile use. Our old stove had a flat top so we would keep a pot of water on it for some moisture in the air.
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Old 10-26-2005, 11:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busone
The "air tight" stove we had had a fixed air inlet. They did this so the flippin thing would meet the EPA standards. If you wanted a damper to control the fire you had to install one in the flue pipe. I did not like that idea so I got some scrap metal and made my own damper in the stove. Air tight stoves are the type that don't have gaps in the construction like an old pot belly where you have to seal it with cement. THe air tight models are usually welded with a rope gasket in the door. There are lots of stoves out there and different manfacturers. You will have to look at the stove to see if it can easily be adapted to bring fresh air in. You can always put a fresh air grill right in front of the stove to provide air. When I would damper our stove down it hardly used any air and it would burn 10 hours on a coule small logs.
I was thinking about installing a catalytic converter, too, just to make it more "neighbor friendly" in close quarters.

Quote:
You might also consider a pellet stove if you have some electricity available. I have seen them in the paper for cheap. Usually they have a burned out auger motor which can always be replaced or repaired. I like the idea of a pellet stove because they can hold quite a bit of fuel and can be vented out the side.
Someone I know is going to heat a commercial greenhouse with a corn stove. It burns feed-corn. Same principle, basically, as a pellet stove.

Quote:
I would look for a welded steel stove vs cast iron. Cast iron tends to crack and I would hate to hit the brakes hard and have the feet crack around the bolts and the stove hit me. A steel stove would be more durable in a mobile use. Our old stove had a flat top so we would keep a pot of water on it for some moisture in the air.
Ya know, last night I was sitting pondering all this, and that is exactly the thing that came to mind when I was thinking about bolting down a cast iron stove with feet. Going from 50 to 0 pretty fast would generate a lot of force on feet that are fairly brittle.

I'm leaning toward the welded steel variety, if I can find a very tiny one cheap. I want a stove as opposed to a heater, so I can cook on it if need be.
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Old 10-26-2005, 01:30 PM   #7
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I am also cocerned about air quality and condensation when the real canadian cold hits. I don't like the idea of major moisture problems.

As far as attaching it to the bus; could one not build an additional retention system like a large metal stap that ran over the top of the stove and was bolted though the floor on either side? Assuming of course that it is not a top loader.

-Richard
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Old 10-27-2005, 12:25 AM   #8
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I like the corn stoves as well. They even make furnaces that can burn corn or pellets. When we get into a house again I will be seriously considering one. I may just convert an old oil furnace to burn wvo though. Those hunter stoves are really cool. They look like they would be great in a bus and the price is nice as well.

As far as the cat converter I would not bother with it. They can be a real pain and clog up. If you burn some wood with some metals in it the cat can go bad. THe newer EPA stoves that are non cat work just as good with out the cost or extra maintaince. My Grandma has one of the EPA non cat stoves and the exhaust is clear except when it is first lit up.

I guess you could use a steel strap to hold a cast iron stove down. Some of the cast iron stoves are nicely priced as well.

You might be able to find a good stove at a construction thrift store or even a scrap yard. There is a big construction thrift store here in Denver. I have seen stoves and inserts there many times. I have even seen them at the scrap yard for the price of scrap steel.
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Old 10-27-2005, 09:53 PM   #9
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Whats the name/address Bus one?..AS we just bought a older mobile home finding nice stuff cheaper than we can out here in the boonies could come in handy *S*
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Old 10-27-2005, 11:58 PM   #10
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The place is called Buds warehouse. You can get all the info you need at their website. http://www.budswarehouse.org/ I used to go there all the time years ago before they moved to their new location. I guess the new location is a lot bigger than the old.

The scrap yard I have seen stoves at is C & M in Englewood. You can call them at (303) 781-6779 or (303) 761-7881.

I also know of some junk shops in the Denver area that have lots of misc stuff. If you are intrested email me and I will lookup the phone numbers. Most of these places are small and don't have websites.
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