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Sunday, July 25, 2004



We are thinking about buying a Jotul. What size is yours? Do you like it? How big a room is it in? We are considering the "Castine" or the "3" something. Our house is very little. Concerned that Castine may be too big, but the "3" won't burn all night. Both have ash pans. The smaller models do not.
Thanks for any input. The sales person was not too helpful. He does not have a wood stove himself.....
Mary and Russ, Wisconsin


Mary, our Jotul is the Oslo, and while it is plenty big, it is not the stove we use the most. Our primary stove is a Vermont Castings Encore in a beautiful enamel green.

According to the manufacturer's specs, the Oslo can heat up to 1,800 square feet and can burn continuously for up to 10 hours. Vermont Castings says the Encore (which is physically smaller than the Oslo) can heat up to 1,900 square feet and can burn continuously for up to 9 hours - and I can tell you from experience that this has proven true for us.

I like our Jotul, but love our Encore - and for exactly the feature that I thought would dampen my enthusiasm for the Encore: the Oslo can be loaded from the front or side, but the Encore can be loaded from the side or top. I thought top loading would be a nuisance, but it has proven to be incredibly fast and easy.

It took us a season or two to really get the hang of operating the Encore at peak efficiency. We've found that the use of the catalytic converter helps extend burn time. And I can't imagine using a woodstove that doesn't have an ash pan, allowing us to empty ashes even when the fire is going strong.

I really hope you can find a woodstove dealer who actually heats his own home with wood. No matter how much sales literature he may have, it seems to me that he can't really advise you that well if he can speak directly from experience. That's like a car salesman who has never driven a car. Our woodstove dealer has heated his home with an Encore for decades!


Your lighthearted acct of your husband? shoot and possibly injury "to die later of it's wounds" 2005 acct of trying to rid your farm of groundhogs is very insensitive and very crule, no mater what the animal it should not have to die of it's wounds.....I don't imagine you would like to .

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