First Firing

I finally hooked up the new stove to the chimney. I wanted to have the room finished, the hearth complete; in reality though, the room is dark and the hearth missing finish masonry work. Still it was cause for great joy to give our second stove, the Alpiner, its first firing. Our first cookstove, the Sweetheart, which covered us for 3½ years will be able to take a break. We won’t have to fire it so hot on the really cold days.

It’s a big deal for us, this represents a lifetime of super nice and free heat, hence the celebration.

The Alpiner is a really nice stove, it has a lot of mass. Chimney draft seems to be perfect, we didn’t have to warm it up and the smoke went right where it was supposed to.


I spent a week end head inside a wood stove I’m restoring.

It needed to be re-bricked, but un-bricking it was an excruciating pain as most of the bricks had been cemented onto the stove surface. In fact it simply wasn’t possible by hand so I acquired an incredible new tool I didn’t know existed before: a rotary hammer. It’s meant to drill holes in concrete and other hard materials. However, it can be set to just hammer (not turn) and you can give it a chisel bit; thus turning it into a tiny jack-hammer. I’m a fan.

Tiny Jack-Hammer! Takatakatak!

Ice on the stairs? Tiny Jack-Hammer!

Definitely a fan…

Almost done

Squeaky clean

It’s going to be very nice when it’s refinished. I’m lucky enough to have spent time in Alps, which is where some of my ancestors are from. This stove is a nice reminder; not that I give much meaning to one’s ancestry.  The Alps though, sometimes they call me, but I’m not leaving the Appalachians.