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Thread: So I take it that burning birch in a stove sucks.

  1. #1
    Member billy jack's Avatar
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    Default So I take it that burning birch in a stove sucks.

    Spent last night in the new wall tent w/ my hunter cylinder stove. Needless to say, I had to fill the stove every 2-3 hrs, and the heat was nothing to brag about. this morning I noticed that there is some creosote dripping from the chimney pipe running down too. It wasn't too cold last night but figured that this stove after all the reviews on Cabelas, that this thing would run us out of the tent after filling her up. I guess that I need some seasoned spruce.

    Anyone?

  2. #2

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    Your birch fuel was not dry. Birch takes near two years to dry, for perfect burning. "DRY" Birch is the best fuel after a bed of spruce coals is established.

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    What AGL said. Seasoned birch would run you out of the tent before seasoned spruce would.

  4. #4
    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default Any unseasoned wood...

    ... will produce less heat and more creosote. The moisture has to be burnt off, reducing BTUs, and the moisture then cools from gas back into liquid and eventually solid, as it makes it's way up the chimney.

  5. #5
    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Default spruce maybe

    seasoned anything would be better than what it sounds like you had but seasoned spruce tends to blow up the stack a LOT quicker than Birch, by my experience Birch if well dry is the most awesome stuff in the state,

    If you're in the field it's a tough find but even limbs from a deadfall, even 2"diameter sticks just stuffed in there on a bed of coals will crank heat and last a long time.

    Keep looking for the Birch

    I actually lived in a Visqueen Tipi in Talkeetna woods for a winter heating with a little tin stove probably similar to yours and Dry Birch kept me toasty all night even in -25,

    Oh how I miss that Birch Firewood, here in Kodiak watching the seasoned Spruce just Burn Too Fast,
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    You were doing something wrong, as others mentioned, wet birch isn't a great heat source. We stayed at a state cabin in March and all we had was wet birch. It took several hours to get the fire going, but once I had a bed of coals and loaded up the stove, the 16' sq cabin was litterally too hot all night long.

    Split your wood and it should be seasoned in a year, especially smaller pieces for a tent stove.

  7. #7
    Member billy jack's Avatar
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    Most of our wood was here when I bough the place last summer, I've has all of the wood under tarps, pretty sure it is pretty well seasoned. Most of it is small birch, 2-5 inches in diameter. we're gonna test it this weekend again, hopefully we'll have some colder wx to test the stove and tent properly.

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    Member greythorn3's Avatar
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    i leave my wood exposed in the sun to elements, i dont like the tarp cause it traps in moisture, only tarp the top if you do, or just throw some plywood over the cords leave the sides open to air out
    Semper Fi!

  9. #9
    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    Birch seems to stay damp a very long time in the round with the bark intact. The bark seems to act kind of like plastic wrap so I split even the very small stuff open as soon as I can. I have cut down green trees, then split and find it will burn fine after just 2 or 3 months loose stacked with plywood over it. The smaller you split the faster it drys but the faster and hotter it burns also. I have had 8' long logs just rot before they dry with the bark on them intact, birch bark is very different than most trees bark.
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    Member atvalaska's Avatar
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    Post no one likes a "wet" woodie...

    i burn nothing but birch as i have horads of it at my place....i find that cutting the trees down ..rite at the time the "buds" open and the leaf is the size of your little thumb nail...down she comes, in short order the leafs will "bloom out" Pulling out all the water! and moose to munch on the new leafs...lim it then i cut a line w/c-saw thur the bark the whole length...wa- la super dry wood not corkie and a long/hot fire
    WHEN IN DOUBT> THROTTLE OUT.......

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by atvalaska View Post
    i burn nothing but birch as i have horads of it at my place....i find that cutting the trees down ..rite at the time the "buds" open and the leaf is the size of your little thumb nail...down she comes, in short order the leafs will "bloom out" Pulling out all the water! and moose to munch on the new leafs...lim it then i cut a line w/c-saw thur the bark the whole length...wa- la super dry wood not corkie and a long/hot fire
    +1 on scaring the bark to let the wood breath.
    Have some neat bark sitting on the shelves that is complete.
    Wood rotted out in the middle.

  12. #12
    Member walk-in's Avatar
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    Default +1 on cutting the bark

    I generally split birch into smaller pieces than spruce if it can't age for at least a year and a half and always run the chainsaw down the length of the log for anything that is too small to split. Works great. I've got about 1/2 dozen birch trees that I just cut down last weekend. I'll buck them up and put them in the wood shed this weekend. They'll dry surprisingly fast that way.
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