1980 - Volume #4, Issue #5, Page #31[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Masonry Stove Claimed To Be Most Efficient
Originating from the colder regions of Europe, where it has been used for over 500 years, the attractive indoor stove is known as the Russian or Finnish fireplace. It is a multiflued brick stove that burns virtually all combustable materials and stores the heat. Rather than burning continuously, it's fired about twice a day.
Manufacturer Basilio Lepuschenko, Richmond, Maine, who custom-builds the stove, maintains that it's "the most efficient woodburning system known to man. All gases are burned off, and there is no problem with creosote and virtually no smoke to cause pollution."
There are two sizes - the 3-flue and 5-flue. The latter is about 25 in. wide, 5 ft. deep and 7 ft. high. The 3-flue is slightly smaller.
Because of high combustion temperatures in the firebox of the stove, there is no creosote buildup within the stove and chiminey. The brick walls of the stove radiate a constant, even warmth, with a heating range of around 20 ft., according to Lepuschenko. The 3-flue stove will heat up to 800 sq. ft.; the 5-flue up to 1,200 sq. ft.
The 3-flue requires 600 common brick and 79 firebrick; the 5-flue requires 1,000 common brick and 120 firebrick. "If you know how to lay bricks you can build your own with a set of do-it-yourself plans," Lepuschenko told FARM SHOW. A mason could supply materials and build the stove for $1,400 to $1,800, depending on size and local brick prices, he says. Materials alone would be in the area of $400 for the 3-flue; $500 for the 5-flue.
Lepuschenko, a cabinet maker by trade, has built about 15 of the stoves in his area of Maine. Another small company building them is Maine Wood Heat Co. at Norridgewock, owned by Albert and Cheryl Barden. Cheryl told FARM SHOW that the stove is truely efficient, and that she and her husband earn their living building it and selling other woodburning equipment. She says they don't recommend that brick-laying novices build the stove.
After a 2 to 8 mo. seasoning period for a new masonry stove, it has to be broken in slowly with a series of small fires. When in full use, mire built in the stove for 20 min. to an hour can store enough heat for 12 hrs. The outside of the stove reaches a temperature of about 150? F.
The secret to the stove's efficiency, according to Lepuschenko, is to have all the fuel burn at the same time, creating a bed of hot coals covered with ash, so that the damper may be safely closed with no danger of carbon monoxide escaping. If small and large wood are burned together, the damper must be kept open until the large wood is burned down to coals, thus sending valuable heat up the chimney instead of into the bricks and on into the house.
There is a lag time of 4 to 6 hrs. between building a fire in the stove and maximum heat output.
Cost of a 24-page brochure, from Lepuschenko or the Bardens, showing detailed construction plans is $10 ($12 in Canada).
For more details, contact:
FARM SHOW Followup, Basilio Lepuschenko, Alexander Road, Richmond, Maine 04357 (ph 207 737-4793).
FARM SHOW Followup, The Bardens, Maine Wood Heat Co., Route 1, Box 38, Norridgewock, Maine 04957 (ph 207 696-5442).
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