Tag Archives: wood stove

Advice from the Wilders

Twelve hour power outage yesterday.

The electricity went out at about one in the afternoon, coming back on at about one in the morning. Odd thing being, it took me a while to notice it. With the battery backup and 12v system in the RV, the only things that need grid power are the microwave, air conditioner, and wall sockets. Although my computer ran out of juice, I hardly needed the air conditioner. And we had light, water, the furnace, and the ability to cook.

Although we probably had two days worth of power if we were conservative, we decided to be super-conservative. If this ended up lasting a few days, I wanted the furnace working as long as possible. Of course, I still allowed myself the luxury of a shower at night and a shower in the morning. That’s the best part of having power even if the lines are down – the 12v water pump still works.

If the outage had gone on for several days, we would have (as we have before) gone pioneer and moved out to the tinycabin, stoking the woodstove for heat. We’d use the propane stove. We would toss a five gallon bucket on a rope down the well to get water, and then heat it on the woodstove. We’d take a half-bath in a washtub.

And then Laura Ingalls Wilder would walk in and whisper, “Hey stupid, the power’s been back on for three hours!”




Filed under adirondacks

It Won’t Be Long Now

The sunflower blossoms are starting to open! Saw my first one today. Looks like the small and mediums are going to bloom nicely. The giants haven’t quite gotten tall enough to have blossoms yet, but there’s still hope for them too.

I have a pile of rags and a tube of stove blacking all ready. Today I’ll be sprucing up the woodstove for the new season. Might climb up on the tinycabin roof too – looks like I have a little leak. I think I might have forgotten to high-temp caulk around the collar of the chimney or something. I think it’ll be an easy fix, whatever it is. It’s hardly rocket science up there.

You have a great day too!


Filed under adirondacks

Hooked Up, Adirondack Style

I don’t know if I can adequately describe how happy I am to be hooked-up in the cabin – everything sorted out, no lumber to dodge, no pieces of the ceiling in the middle of the floor, no furniture stacked on top of furniture. I don’t even have to stumble over five things and sandwich myself behind a piece of insulation to sit at the piano. And the wood stove … aah, the woodstove. Nice to have the holiday decorations up too. You think I’m the first person to ever put a Christmas bow on an antique prop sword that was used in the Ziegfeld Follies? Yeah, probably.

Anyhow. Love the sheddycabin.

Sure, there is still some silver-colored ceiling … insulation showing that I need to put planks over. And you’ll see some OSB chip-board here and there. But it’s functional. And it’s awesome. And it’s warm. Well, heck. Don’t take my word for it. Here’s a few pics.


Filed under adirondacks

Throw Another Log on the Fire

See that photo? Know what it is? It’s the sweet sight of success. That, ladies and gentlemen, is my first woodstove fire, viewed through a removable cook lid. My woodstove is installed, up to code, double-wall insulated, and fired up. And the chimney doesn’t even drip.

Ladies and gentlemen, I’m coming at you from my rocking chair, with a fire in the wood stove next to me.

Sure, I cut my hand on a piece of stainless steel, and I spent two days on an icy roof. And I think I might have acquired arthritis. But it’s done, and it works.

Very interesting getting to know the personality of my stove. Each behaves a little differently, especially when it comes to starting fires and how much air it likes. After just a day of fussing with mine, I’m getting used to it. I’ll be looking for a chart that tells me what-kind-of-wood-burns-how.

The horrific stink from the fumes and firing it up the first time were pretty awful, but that will go away. No more propane in the little sheddycabin. We figured it would be costing about $90 a month in propane to heat this extra “luxury” building. Not any more. Wood is cheap-to-free around my parts (if you know people), and a friend has a garage full I can just have.

And now, warmed by wood, I can set to working finishing off the cabin and making it pretty. Awesome.

You have a great day too.


Filed under adirondacks

The Hot Head

Sorry for the radio silence, friends. Long few days.

You know those few areas in your life that you take way too seriously? Oh, yeah. I totally ran into one of those this week. Long story short – We need to heat the cabin/studio, we discovered the propane heater was going to be inadequate and way too expensive, and I wanted a woodstove. Who knew a woodstove could cause such angst?!

I found a helluva deal at Tractor Supply – a very nice cast iron box stove that can accomodate 23 inch logs. Small, nice looking, perfect. Even has a cooktop … tea on the woodstove in the cabin! And on super-sale for $149, which is unheard of.

I allowed myself to get way too excited about it. I understand why – a woodstove is sort of a heart’s-desire thing with me. And I didn’t think. All my neighbors’ stovepipes go out through their walls. I planned the same. And crashed and burned. $500-something additional bucks to run the pipe through the wall, up the outside, and above the roof. Well, there’s just no way. I don’t care if wood heat is free – we can’t lay out almost $700 to heat a cabin. It would take two or three years to recoup that.

Then, in the way that these things always happen, a friend who also has an Amish-built cabin took issue with my estimates, and explained his rig – with the stovepipe going through the ceiling. Duh. My estimates were sky high because I was foolishly running most of the length outside, where you need to use expensive insulated stovepipe. (Safety, and codes besides – both of which I respect.)

I made new plans to run the pipe through the ceiling, called Tractor Supply to see if they had the Metalbestos thimble/chimney/cap/stuff I needed, and found that I could do the whole thing for $390. Including the stove. Tight, but doable. Especially considering that we won’t be paying the estimated $90 per month for propane in the cabin. And two neighbors have already offered as much free wood as I want. Oh, and that woodstove pictured above? By Sunday evening, it will be sitting in the corner pictured here. They only had one left, so I paid for the everything over the phone.

Quite literally – Over the river and through the woods, to Tractor Supply we go.



Filed under adirondacks