Category Archives: Personal Stories

Personal stories about cookstoves show us why folks want one of these amazing devices in their homes. Cookstoves are part of a lifestyle taken up by people who strive for simplicity and self-sufficiency, and here you can see what they have to say about their experiences.

The Warmth of Wood Heat

warmth of wood heatThere is just something special about the warmth of wood heat from a stove or fireplace. If you have ever had the opportunity to stand in front of a wood fire to warm up after spending hours outdoors in the cold, you know what I am talking about.

You enter the house that has been heated with wood; and immediately feel the warmth that has heated the wonderful little place so nicely.
You are able to smell the wood and the out-of-doors; yet you know you are no longer out in the cold.

You see the warm glow of the red-hot coals that remain from the fire that has died down while you were out.

The bucket of wood sits to the side of the woodstove. You need to restock the stove, so you put a few logs into the firebox. You hear the crackle of the flue as it warms up again.

warmth of wood heat 2As you kick off your shoes, you feel the warm floor that has been warmed by the fire, it feels so good.

The hot water is ready on top of the woodstove, waiting to be poured into a cup of coffee, hot chocolate, or tea. You pick up a mug and pour a cup of your favorite drink.

You glance towards the recliner you love; your favorite book there, just waiting for you. So come on in and warm up a spell, then relax in the warmth of the trusty woodstove.

– Wrangler Jane.

My Experience With Obadiah’s Woodstoves

There are many places that sell things, but I have never encountered one like Obadiah’s Woodstoves. They have the best customer service I have encountered in a long time. I had been looking through woodstoves online and in catalogs. After much research, I decided I wanted the Vermont Bun Baker. Of course, I wanted the best price, too; and that is what brought me to Obadiah’s Woodstoves. They had the lowest price, from what I could find online.

I called them because I had several questions regarding the Vermont Bun Baker. I was pleased to find when I called, that I was able to speak to a live person, instead of a recording that you get so many times now days. After getting my first set of questions answered, we decided we would purchase our Vermont Bun Baker through Obadiah’s. I called back with a new set of questions in regards to payment and delivery of the unit. I again spoke with a live person, who was very helpful and returned my call with all the answers to my questions. Once this call was over and I had order and delivery confirmation I thought my interaction with Obadiah’s would be over.

When our woodstove arrived, we had a broken piece of soapstone. We noted this on the paperwork we had to sign upon delivery. I called Obadiah’s in regards to the broken soapstone. They asked me to take pictures and send them via email to verify the broken piece. I was happy to do this. I received a prompt reply to my email, stating that another piece was being shipped out.

During the next several months that passed, we had more questions, in regards to the operation of the woodstove. I emailed Obadiah’s many times, always getting a prompt reply. It seemed that no matter what my question was or how many questions I had, they were always willing to go out of their way to make sure I understood what to do or how to fix my problem. For example, during one conversation it was discovered, by what I was saying, that our telescopic stove pipe was professionally installed upside down. This was verified by sending lots of pictures through email. Obadiah’s told me what I needed to do in order to correct the problem. My husband and I were able to reinstall the telescopic flue pipe correctly with the information we acquired from Obadiah’s.

Obadiah’s has some of the best customer service I have seen in a long time. I would recommend Obadiah’s to anyone who wants to not only get a good deal on a stove, but also have someone there to talk you through any problems or questions you may have.

– Wrangler Jane.

Our Woodstove: The Vermont Bun Baker

vermont bun baker 1 I am going to tell you about our experience with our woodstove, called the Vermont Bun Baker. We have owned it for three years now. We really enjoy our woodstove. We had three things we needed to find in a woodstove to meet our needs. The Vermont Bun Baker fit the bill and had all three qualities we were looking for. That made our choice easy when it came to which woodstove to get.

We bought it mainly use in heating our house. We were looking for an alternative heating source for our house. We choose to get the soapstone, because I knew that it would help in keeping the stove warm and thus keeping the area around the wood stove warm. We got the stove in Oct. The first winter we had the woodstove we had no idea how much wood we would need, how long the stove would stay hot, how many times we would have to bring in wood, or even how to operate the wood stove. It was a learning time. We used both the woodstove and our electric heat pump that first year as we learned how to use the stove. We knew from the online research what the stove was designed to do as far as how much area it would heat (700-900 sq. ft.) and what the burn times were (8 hours).

Now, a little bit of information about our house. Our house is an all-electric; 2400 sq. ft. insulated concrete form home. Our ICF walls are 2.5″ of expanded polystyrene foam, 8″ of concrete and then 2.5″ of expanded polystyrene foam again on the outside, thus giving our walls an R-40 insulation value. Both the lower level and main level of the house is this same type of wall, so it is well insulated. We did not know if the woodstove would be able to heat all 2400 sq ft, as the house is much larger than their 700-900 sq ft they say the stove will heat. Our chimney flue pipe is 36′ long, yes 36′ long. The woodstove is in the basement and the flue is a straight shot out the roof on the main level. It is an open concept house. There are no hallways on either floor. Every room (BR, BA, and Kitchen) is off the main room (LR, FR) on that level, except for the laundry and garage.

We found we got longer burn times than what the internet said the stove is capable of. We have gotten anywhere from ten to twelve hour burn times. I am sure this also varies with the type of wood you are burning. We have been burning oak and hickory. Since we had such wonderful burn times the first year, we decided the second year to try to use just the woodstove for heat. We cut a 14″ X 30″ hole in the floor directly above the woodstove, thus allowing the heat to travel upstairs thru the hole in the floor. We also added a fan at the top of the stairs blowing down the stairs; thus circulating the heat upstairs. This worked wonderfully, as the stove is centrally located in the lower level of the home. We estimate that we burn through three cords on a cold winter. The first woodshed we built holds 2.25 cords of wood. The second shed we just finished holds three cords. We are hoping that this gives us enough wood for two winters. The temperature of the house usually maintains itself at 72-75 degrees.

Second, we wanted a woodstove that we could not only cook on, but also do our baking in, if the power went out. There are many different kinds of woodstoves for baking, but we also did not have a large space that many of them require. The Vermont Bun Baker is not big enough for a 9X13 baking dish, so we have learned to adapt to using something a bit smaller. A twelve-inch pizza stone fits and works well for cookies and pizza. These are the two most popular things for us to bake in the woodstove. There is a bit of learning to know how long it takes to bake things. It all depends on what the temperature of the oven is and how much fire you have in the firebox. If you put things on both racks, the stuff on the top rack can easily burn on top if you are not careful, as it is very close to the bottom of the firebox. We learned this by experience when we baked bread in the oven. The soapstone always keeps the teakettle warm enough for hot tea. We have not yet made the transition to doing all of our cooking on the woodstove. We mainly use it to melt butter and warm things up.

Reason number three for choosing the Vermont Bun Baker is the small footprint it takes, if you round up the measurements, it is a 22″ X 22″ square. Most of the woodstoves out there were too big in one dimension or other to fit in our space.

The Vermont Bun Baker not only had the small footprint, but it had the baking ability and the heating capability we were looking for in a woodstove. We have enjoyed our woodstove so far and look forward to learning to use it more as time goes on. If we had to do it all over again, we would choose the same stove.

– Wrangler Jane.

Baking a pie with the Vermont Bun Baker.

Baking a pie with the Vermont Bun Baker.