What did you do to prep today??


Memento Mori
Brass Subscriber
Yesterday, Maint Day for the "New" Freeze-Dryer: Swapped in the Rebuilt Oilless, and ran a Vacuum Test - OK!
Ran a Comparo with "New" Oilless Pump that has Been working Hard - Both get to nearly the same Vacuum in nearly the same Time 170/185 mTorr in circa 30 Minutes.

Good Cleaning of Chamber and Drain Hose, Rack and Door.

Nuther Load of Banananas in. Coming out today. Next Up: Buncha Fuji Apples.


Well-known member
Brass Subscriber
Well - we WERE prepared.

Hol had a chimney fire tonight. Buck & I ran our big extinguisher down... and when I got the dogs back in my house, grabbed the other two smaller extinguishers to put out the reignition. It would've been 20 mins for the fire company to get here - if they could even find the place. And by then, it would've been a real FIRE. She's used to managing fire, from her work. So, she was moving at the speed of light when we got there.

We have to make a parts run tomorrow, so extinguishers will get repaced and those fire out logs will be purchased. Chimney pipe needs inspecting & cleaning too, before she lights the stove again. It's REAL windy tonight, so that probably added to the speed it took off.

Dogs freak out at the smoke alarms; I passed Beeb on the way down the drive and knew he'd head for my house, and she passed Knuckles to me, to put in ranger to keep him out the wind. Pitbulls don't have much coat; and he's white & pink... even thinner.
Just a word or three on wood stoves and wood heat.
In my experience, I have found tis better to have a slightly undersized stove and run it a tad hot.

Lots of folks buy bigger stoves then they need for the cubic feet they are trying to heat.
Thinking bigger is better.

Then they typically sit and simmer closed way down most of the time,
because they toss out too much heat if you run them more open.

The slow burn allows for the build up of more creosote.
Larger stoves running at near idle will require more frequent chimney cleanings.

The second part is wood choice and curing.
Personally I believe all wood should sit split, covered, and exposed to moving air for at least one full year, not cut in the summer and burned in the winter. 2 or more years for Oak.
Think covered, slotted, wood shed with space between the rows. Air flow is critical.

Physics tells us water doesn't burn. wood with a high moisture content, will dirty a stove and chimney
much faster than dry wood will.

I have people tell me their outdoor wood furnaces get more heat out of wet wood.
I call BS. It takes heat (BTUs) to boil off the water. Best to let the sun and the wind do that.

There are only so many BTUs in any given chunk of wood.
The water must be boiled off before the wood can burn.

The choice of wood can dictate chimney cleaning intervals.

My hands down favorite fire wood choice for wood stoves is Beech.
I seasons fairly fast, has a very low resin content, it burns hot and leaves little ash.

Ash is another great choice, especially if you are trying to cheat on the curing times

Red or White Oak is great wood and high on the BTU per ton scale.
But it takes at least 2 years of proper seasoning to get it ready to burn.

Cherry burns hot, but it contains a lot of resin and will dirty your chimney sooner.
Same goes for white and red pine,

Birch is like Cherry, it burns decent but carries a lot of chimney plugging resins.

Tamarack (Larch) burns fairly clean, but it doesn't offer the nearly the BTUs per ton hardwoods do.
Also any soft wood will leave you searching for coals to rekindle in the morning. They usually burn down to nothing.

I believe chimneys should be cleaned twice per season, no exceptions,
once at the beginning, once about half way through the winter.

It can be a pain, but way less so than even a small chimney fire.
Or worse yet, standing out in the yard (if you're lucky) in the middle of the night in your skivvies,
watching your house burn to the ground.

The info above is based on a lifetime of wood stove use, in northern New York and now northern Michigan experience.
There may be many trees better or worse than those I listed. these are just what I have experience with.

The same goes for curing (seasoning) times. Wood in California will cure up faster than wood in the Adirondacks.
Sunny days and low humidity accelerate the process quite a bit.

Here and in the 'Dacks the humidity is ridiculously high much of the time.

Wood shed location is also a factor. a south facing open front with a generous roof coverage and slotted back and sides is about the best. I like to stack the wood in spaced row parallel to the rays of the sun.

This allows the entire shed to get hammered by the suns rays. plus as the wood heats the air rises causing a good amount of circulation and there by drying.

Another cool option if you have extra labor,
or don't have a proper shed is the Holz hausen

Basic Version,

More advanced and entertaining version,

I have built several of these over the years and they work extremely well.

That is all,
Last edited:


Well-known member
Brass Subscriber
The theory behind the Holz Hausen.

Theoretically, the sun hits the top heating the upper layers of wood.
The heated wood causes the air to rise.
The rising air creates a vacuum.
That causes cooler surface level air to be sucked into the pile.
Giving you air circulation similar to a wood shed.

I never just tossed my wood in into the middle like these guys
The traditional German way is to stack it vertically in the center.
So that is what I did.

The cooler air flows into the down sloped outer wood and then chimney effects its way to the top,
circulating drying air throughout the entire stack.

I found these to be very effective, labor intensive at the start, but well worthwhile.
Last edited:


Just a guy
Brass Subscriber
I was just reading your freeze drying thread. !!!! Still thinking about buying one.
I tell you what, it’s not just great for storing food, we use it a ton for snacks too. Much easier to make some healthy snacks, put them in mason jars, and snack on them instead of reaching for chips or candy.

We do jalapeño poppers, steel cut oatmeal bites with actual apples and raisins, Greek yogurt bites with strawberries and bananas (pre frozen in ice cube trays, and other stuff. Just finished off some pumpkin and cream cheese bites from our pumpkins of 2021. They were stored in the cupboard in a mason jar, no special treatment.

Just picked up 50lb of ground beef and 60lb of pork loin to run through the FD


Domari Nolo
Forum Merchant
When it come to building the LTS supply, I have always been a slow and steady wins the race sorta guy. A freeze dryer seems to be such a natural extension of that style. Make two meatloafs instead of one and FD the second one. Makes total sense. Maybe after I get done putting a 4K new metal roof on the barn this year. lol


Brass Subscriber
When it come to building the LTS supply, I have always been a slow and steady wins the race sorta guy. A freeze dryer seems to be such a natural extension of that style. Make two meatloafs instead of one and FD the second one. Makes total sense. Maybe after I get done putting a 4K new metal roof on the barn this year. lol
you will love a metal roof .i never looked back. never go back to shingle.
today is gas bottle run for welding.......time to get welders set up from the move.


Trump back to WH winter 22/23
Brass Subscriber


Just a guy
Brass Subscriber
Eggs Out, Bananas In the Freeze Dryer. Next Up: ELK Grinds, Eight Pounds!

Work on Yearly Cleaning on alla Mah Pea-Shooters. Inventory of all AMMO, and Reloading supplies for More, MORE MORE!

Time and Weather Permitting, Gonna do some Air-Rifle Shooting.
I need to do some eggs. Our chickens are finally going gang busters, and we must have 20+ dozen eggs.

Just took another 8lb of 90% lean ground beef out of the FD last night. Another 8lb will go in today.