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Thread: Wood Stove Heat Absorbers???

  1. #1
    Member jojomoose's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011

    Default Wood Stove Heat Absorbers???

    Hello All, My cabin is coming along well and can't wait to post a good story at the end of the summer with its progress. The problem I have is a very cheap wood stove, that has all of these air holes in it. It is the cheap one you get at SBS or Lowes for like $200 bucks. It warms the cabin very well, and very quick, but I have to wake up every three to four hours to restart a fire due to everyone being cold (it isn't even winter yet). I haven't insulated the cabin yet, due to me saving all interior jobs to the winter. My buddy has the cylinders that sit at the base of the wood stove that are filled with a liquid. He says they are for that exact reason, they will hold their heat a lot longer than the wood stove so I might be able to get a good eight hours of heat out of one good burn. What are everyone's thoughts on this issue? Anything besides spending a fortune on a backwoods cabin stove. Thanks


  2. #2
    Member KantishnaCabin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012


    I probably have the same exact Volgelzang Boxwood stove. Haha, there is no cheap fix. The only resonable solution I have bee able to find is buying a used airtight stove off of craigslist. You can usually find a pretty decent replacement for around $500.

  3. #3


    When I first started burning wood years ago, I had a huge stone fireplace that someone could crawl back into because it was so big.
    I had the idea of removing the little insert and just using the fireplace. Nice to look at but you might as well throw the wood
    over the back bank. Didn't throw much heat. I put the insert back in and closed off the chimney with insulation above metal. The insert
    didn't have the roping on the doors. I went through wood like I was running a train. So hard and hot that it eventually blew both glass
    doors out at different times. I took the frames and put heavy steel in them. Then installed a fan behind it to shove heat out in the room.
    Then I eventually moved into a double wide with a fireplace. Glass folding doors. Once again you might as well throw the wood over the
    back bank because it didn't put any heat out in the room even with a fan. Then we went into a house with a old Franklin stove. I didn't
    even try it. Not air tight. I bought two new free standing stoves. Each have the tubes for the second burn. What a difference. I like the
    the tubes because it basically makes the smoke burn which creates a cool floating fire. So it's important to basically keep the air out. Just allowing enough air in to keep it hot enough to prevent chimney problems. I'm not familiar with your stove. Maybe you can seal it up some.
    It really would be worth buying a good sealed stove if available. It could save you a lot of wood down the road. Also a lot of work.

  4. #4


    Anything you do to the stove will be a Band-Aid. I'm not sure what the holes and or gaps look like. Maybe you could use a high temp stove caulk
    to seal it up some. Keep some on hand to repair any that might eventually break apart later. Maybe bolts with sealant for any round holes? There are really several reasons why a stove may only burn a few hours. Capacity of the stove, air issues, type of wood, does the chimney need a damper, etc...

  5. #5
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    You could put firebricks in the stove to provide some additional thermal mass, but the only way to get an all night burn is a well designed stove that can be loaded up with wood and the damper adjusted to get a long slow burn going.

    The additional challenge with a small cabin is it's really tough to get a small stove to hold an all night burn, and if you get a big enough stove for an all night burn it'll blast you out of the cabin when you're getting it up to temp.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

  6. #6
    Member Sobie2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006


    You will go through a lot less wood, and go longer between firings with a proper EPA certified catalyzed type stove. Paul H is correct about increasing the thermal mass too. I don't know what your price range is but I have seen the some good stoves for around $700 and up. And they are worth it, so change that sucker out!



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