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Old 12-07-2022, 06:04 PM   #1
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Wood stove pipe through the window -- pros and cons from experience?

Hi all,


New here and new to the skoolie world -- just bought my first C60 that is already partial converted. Hoping to get some feedback on anyone who has installed a wood stove with the stove pipe through the window -- tips, tricks, best light weight non-combustible surround materials, pros and cons, etc.



I have a couple options for placement (see attached) -- I am leaning towards building closer to floor level so as to not lose vertical clearance and run the risk of too short a vertical exhaust pipe section before the elbow out the window.



Main reason for my current rationale is it is only temporary use for heating while parked on my property this winter as I will be traveling during the other seasons, so punching a hole through the ceiling seems a bummer when it isn't a permanent heating solution. Also, it would be nice to not totally hose my options for insurance.



Eventually, I hope to install a diesel heater, but for now, I already have a Survivor "Cub" stove from my wall tent and most of the materials to install this woodstove right away without dropping another few hundred bucks.


Thanks in advance!
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Old 12-07-2022, 06:27 PM   #2
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Wood heat is about the best way to heat IMO.
Don't forget metal or brick under it...
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Old 12-07-2022, 08:28 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peteg59 View Post
Wood heat is about the best way to heat IMO.
Don't forget metal or brick under it...
Absolutely. Definitely plan on building a brick/stone platform and cement board and flashing shroud around the back and sides and cement board for porting through the window.
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Old 12-07-2022, 08:28 PM   #4
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I have not installed a wood stove in a bus. Don't do it.

However if you are going to do it...

I've installed plenty in residences, back in the day. Guidance is in National Fire Protection Association code 211 (NFPA 211), available here if you register with the site:
https://www.nfpa.org/codes-and-stand...etail?code=211

Note: if you search this forum you will find a lot of discussion about the safety and practicality of a wood burning stove in a skoolie, and a lot of strong opinions. Many of us love the ambiance but won't take the risk. Others say no big whup, just use common sense. Some of them may already be dead from a bus fire, but as they say, you do you.

Further note: if you read the posts in this forum you'll also find that no insurance company will insure a skoolie with a wood stove. Period. That means all of those folks with a wood stove are skirting the insurance rules. And just because a whole lot of people do this doesn't change the fact that your insurance company may drop you, or refuse to cover your claim (regardless of whether a wood stove was involved in the damage).

Okay, got the caveats out of the way. If I were to do this, which I wouldn't, here would be my minimums, which roughly conform to the abovementioned standard yet are still likely to set a fire to burn your bus like a freakin' roman candle:

1. Floor. Must be noncombustible, and the noncombustible surface must extend 18" from the sides and front of the stove. This assumes you have at least 6" clearance under your stove. Looks like you have that, from your picture. My experience is live coals often fall out of the stove when loading wood, and even 18" isn't enough.

2. Wall behind. Stove must be 12" away, providing you have a 24 gauge steel sheet mounted so it stands off from the wall at least 1" with spacers, open all around for good air circulation. You can use other noncombustible materials but for God's sake don't build a cubby into it to store firewood.

3. Front and side clearance. 36" from any combustible surface unless you have the same treatment as described for the wall behind. From the pictures the only location that might give you that type of clearance is on the little platform.

4. Chimney pipe. At least 26 gauge steel pipe single wall pipe spaced 18" from any combustible surface. Use double wall and you can be about 6" from combustible surfaces. Any horizontal run should not be more than 50% of the vertical run outside the bus. Translation: if your elbow to elbow horizontal run out the window is 36" you need 72" vertical to ensure draft. Having said that, you need 15 feet of chimney for proper draft. Yeah, I know, but that just means if you have anything shorter your draft will not pull all combustion gases out of the bus. All pipe secured so a whack with your hand doesn't dislodge any part of it.

Other considerations:
-the wood stove will wreak havoc with your fire alarm
-when the stove is doing its best job burning wood the chimney is also doing its best to suck all the warm air in the bus out the chimney. Air infiltration may make it so you are too hot near the stove and chilly anywhere away from it, especially near windows and doors. The compromise is a poorly burning fire and associated smoke inhalation.
-wood stoves like the one you show don't burn all night.
-air quality is significantly reduced with a wood burning stove. I wouldn't let a baby sleep in the bus with a wood stove.
-carbon monoxide poisoning is a risk. Never use coal in a confined space unless you are willing to take the real risk of waking up dead.

PS. Diesel heaters are safe and work really well. For ambiance, consider candles in an enclosed sconce.
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Old 12-07-2022, 08:48 PM   #5
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if you are going to use a wood stove for this winter just to make it through till you install a diesel heater or other better permanently installed appliance then by all means make a metal surround piece and put a chimney through a window.. i would simply open the bus window or remove it in a way you can put it back in.. I would probably put some temporary pavers or such on the floor and set the stove on it..



I would never ever recommend a wood stove be installed in a bus thats going to drive.. imagine that thing flying around if you slam on the brakes or god forbid you crash..



im a huge fan of wood fires in a stove or fireplace in a BUILDING.. or a bus that remains 100% stationary but not in anything that can be driven with said stove in the bus...



I realize people want free heat with wood they find etc...BUT..
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Old 12-07-2022, 09:36 PM   #6
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Exit through the window as high as you can safely do. Getting draft started through a chimney can be a problem. The more warm vertical pipe you have can really help getting the the stove to draw.
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Old 12-10-2022, 10:55 PM   #7
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Suggest you get one with an outside air inlet. That gets rid of most of the problems these people are imagining are serious. Through bolt it to the members supporting the floor, or, take it out before traveling.


I don't suppose you need to be told it should be empty and cool before you take it out -- I'll say it so someone else doesn't feel the need.


Most woodstove problems are problems caused by wet wood. In most of the country, found wood is more damp than the stove will like.
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Old 12-11-2022, 09:32 AM   #8
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guess some here did not comprehend that you stated it would be tempory to help the build.yes use metal and brick or keep flammible prouducts away. as far as draft issues keep any horiontal chiminy to a absolute minimun or use 45 degree elbows instead of 90s and go out the window at a angle
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Old 12-11-2022, 09:34 AM   #9
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during your built it will be a good way to dispose of your scrap wood
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Old 12-11-2022, 10:42 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmoore6856 View Post
guess some here did not comprehend that you stated it would be tempory to help the build.yes use metal and brick or keep flammible prouducts away. as far as draft issues keep any horiontal chiminy to a absolute minimun or use 45 degree elbows instead of 90s and go out the window at a angle

It seemed to me like they would be using it repetitively, every winter, not just for the build. Outside air for heating efficiency and good air quality inside seems called for, even if it never moves ever with the stove installed.
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Old 12-11-2022, 12:13 PM   #11
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So your telling him what he meant??.. I trust when he said it would be temporary I guess I assumed he would not lie to me and instead of going Karen like some here do I would offer a good opinion to helhim but........ this is a great example of the constant whining and bickering when you point out the obvious... I'm at the point in life if it looks like **** comes out I call it a ass
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Old 12-11-2022, 02:44 PM   #12
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I'm reading what they wrote. They said nothing about using it only during conversion. They said they would be using it for the winter when they weren't traveling, and they didn't say only the first winter.
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Old 12-11-2022, 03:08 PM   #13
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Old 12-11-2022, 04:04 PM   #14
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Wow, this thread's going to hell. Wonder what happened to all the friendly, helpful people that used to be around here?

But I digress.

Since you're not wanting to run a chimney through the roof, you can make a sheet metal window filler to run it through. Double it up and install fireproof insulation between the two pieces, and if you put one piece inside and one piece outside and bolt them together you can get an inch or more insulation in there without making a permanent modification to the bus. A couple of bolts at the bottom for it to rest on will keep it from moving around the window opening, and it'll need to be sealed against the weather on the outside.

You also want to use the double wall metal chimney for this, with 45 degree angles to pass through the window, and I'd try to get one that has fireproof insulation between the inner and outer tube. A single wall will lose heat too fast, which will cool and condense the air too fast. This will cause draft problems and will accelerate building up creosote in the chimney. A double wall will keep the heat in better and keep the velocity up. You're also going to want to have the chimney go about a foot higher than the bus roof, and will need to support it so a strong wind or ice buildup can't cause it to collapse.

Fire in a small area is a concern, moving or not, so keep a window open far from the fire. I'd suggest in the bedroom area., and build a box to keep weather and insects out while it's open. Just need a triangle box facing down on the outside with bugscreen across the bottom. You can control air by raising/lowering the glass. A carbon monoxide detector in the bedroom area would also be a good idea, and if you start getting an unexplained headache while inside head straight out as a headache is a sign of CO poisoning.

Hope some of this helps
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Old 12-11-2022, 04:12 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by carnyxynrac View Post
it is only temporary use for heating while parked on my property this winter

...

Eventually, I hope to install a diesel heater
Seems like OP really did just say this winter only (hopefully).
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Old 12-11-2022, 09:32 PM   #16
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" Main reason for my current rationale is it is only temporary use for heating while parked on my property this winter as I will be traveling during the other seasons "




All the other seasons? Or not the winters?


Even if it's just this winter it will still work best with outside combustion air, making the heating far more efficient and providing the least particulates and fumes inside the bus.
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Old 12-12-2022, 10:28 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by TaliaDPerkins View Post
Even if it's just this winter it will still work best with outside combustion air, making the heating far more efficient and providing the least particulates and fumes inside the bus.
Talia, interesting point, thanks for bringing it up. I did a little research on outside air intakes and there's quite a bit of merit to your suggestion though, of course a variety of opinions.

Here's a link discussing pros and cons (mostly cons-but a really good discussion about the factors to take into consideration, so, helpful):https://www.woodheat.org/the-outdoor...h-exposed.html

And one more:https://www.michiganwoodpellet.com/w...-all-the-fuss/

If I were to install a wood stove in a confined and tightly insulated space I would definitely install an outside air intake, directly plumbed to the stove.
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Old 12-12-2022, 05:35 PM   #18
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Well then...

Been too busy working on the bus and other winter prep to checkin past few days...so...Thank you all for the variety of informed, speculative, and random feedback.

I love that someone actually thought I would even contemplate driving around with a woodstove piping hot and unbolted to the floor. 🤣 Yikes!

And yes...this is a temporary heating solution and only for while it's parked on my property this winter. The diesel heater goes in after some other finish work and electrical is figured out.
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Old 12-12-2022, 05:49 PM   #19
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"I love that someone actually thought I would even contemplate driving around with a woodstove piping hot and unbolted to the floor. 🤣 Yikes!"


I hate to tell you, there are people who have done even that...
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Old 12-12-2022, 11:26 PM   #20
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Yes-because this is a public forum and pretty much anyone can buy a bus it would be a mistake to assume the average poster is a rational actor, thus 'don't burn in the stove while driving...'
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