So, I've made my design to the book as much as i can; followed all the measurements and what not.
What i found:
• Putting the feed
in the front instead of on top ("L" shape instead of "J") worked a lot better. I had a much easier time getting the fire started and keeping it going. The draft was better as well.
• Sometimes, for no apparent reason, i suddenly get a huge amount of smoke, just going everywhere, including out the feed. Maybe just wetish wood
, but, wow, too much smoke out the feed.
• This is a dry run, no mortar, and using a clay/sand or high heat mortar in between all the bricks will tighten it up.
• My heat riser is only a couple inches thick, leaving a 4-5 inches pocket around it. Today I will fix that and shrink the pocket down to 1.5 inches with a much thicker heat riser.
I've never done anything like this before, and no one in my area (Ashland, OR, of all places) has stepped up to help me out that has made one before. Maybe i need to make some more phone calls. If anyone can help mentor me with this, that would be great. It's really cold here and i would love to be able to move into my new home ASAP
...letting the journey mold me and be the richness of life, not the goal i am after, life is good.