Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Winter time

It's been a rough winter, overall -- with temps much colder than we've been spoiled with the past few years. Since this is our first year trying to make it through with only wood heat, it has definitely been a learning and growing experience.

After much effort and modifications, we finally got the wood stove fully in place and operational in late October, I think. Then we began the learning curve of building fires just properly, trying to control or create updraft, etc. Since we have a stove with a 10" vent, and we funnel it down to a 4" chimney liner, it has been a real challenge.

I might just review all the steps we went through all of last year to make this happen:

  • Purchased used Franklin Wood Stove
  • Found someone giving away used floor quarry tiles
  • Re-arranged living room to make room for stove.
  • Ripped back carpet and underlying linoleum in wood stove area of living room.
  • Helped good friend lay tile in the area
  • Ripped paneling off East living room wall
  • Cleaned out old brick chimney
  • Repaired/mortared loose bricks in chimney
  • Took out chimney liner, repaired, added to, replaced and cemented
  • Took many layers old wallpaper off east wall, down to old plaster
  • Replastered both wall and chimney exterior, multiple coats
  • Cement board over old furnace air intake
  • Stove board installed on back wall
  • Adapted stove vent from 10" to 4" to work with chimney

It was a months-long project. But so far the wood stove has provided us with warmth sufficient for the below-zero wind chills we had over multiple days. Only this week did we begin to have issues - we believe some creosote was partially plugging our already-constricted vent, causing much more smoke inside the house than should be. This should be resolved this week, as we finally get temperatures warm enough that we can clear out the fire for awhile.

Been doing lots of cutting and splitting of wood lately.
video

Much else has happened in the two months since I last posted. More than I can list. Spent two weeks in Branson, MO. Had a good Thanksgiving meal with family at the farm. Had a visit from my daughter's boyfriend over school break, and we all visited the Cosmosphere, among other things.

Right now, we're just counting the days until spring. Browsing the seed catalogs, waiting for the ground to thaw...

Bella and Lilly