First fire of the season


Yeah, I know – I took this pic right after most of the kindling had burned down and before I stoked the stove for actual heat. It’s a process. The process is kind of a pain in the ass, but once you own the infrastructure and tools it’s super cheap and reliable. It’s a fire in an iron box: The only way to make it simpler would be a stone circle on the floor and a smoke hole in the ceiling. The world outside the Gulch could go full Mad Max and I’d still have winter heat.

There’s only one complicated bit, and every year at this time I have this anxious moment while I wait to find out if the heat-actuated fan still works.


I’ve had bad experiences with electronic gadgets that work fine when I put them in storage and then never again. But this thing…


I’ve had it for a long time now. A Generous Reader gave it to me – I dunno, pushing ten years ago. I shouldn’t say anything stupid like it’s apparently never going to break, but…

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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8 Responses to First fire of the season

  1. WJW says:

    So you just jinxed yourself.

  2. Bigus Macus says:

    Ask for the Blessings of Saint Eligius. The patron of Goldsmiths, Blacksmiths, Horses, Taxi Drivers and Mechanics.

  3. malatrope says:

    There’s no electronics in those fans. The motor is directly wired to a thermocouple. It will last forever.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Can your provide the make and model number of that unit?

  5. Mike says:

    Those wood stove fans are great. I modified one a few years ago to circulate heat from my Mr. Buddy heater around my small workshop.

  6. Joel says:

    Anon 2:51, it’s a no-name Chinese knockoff. There isn’t even a brand name on the box.

  7. M says:

    It was/is available at Amazon. We bought ours 2 years before sending one to Uncle Joel. Only another 15 years and you’ll have an antique!

    Anywho – a quick check shows a Black Friday price of $34.25: https://www.amazon.com/VODA-4-Blade-Fireplace-Increases-Friendly/dp/B01CD2AIV8

    Glad to see it’s still a twirling’ – it’s officially cool when I know this is out of the box.

  8. Anonymous says:

    There is probably no electronics in that fan, maybe just a simple thermal disc that “puckers up” in the other direction and acts as a switch (or triggers a switch). Might be a little metal spot on the bottom where it sits on the stove to keep clean of debris, for thermal transfer to the disc, but it will last a loooong time. The motor will probably die before the disc does.

    boynsea

To the stake with the heretic!