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Messages - Undersky

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Other Winter Camping Gear / Re: candle stick holders
« on: April 05, 2019, 07:34:12 pm »
I agree on the effectiveness of Luci lights and equivalents.

Has anyone ever seen a type with a warmer coloured, and ideally a full spectrum light?

Deeper slush, where the machine has to push a layer of snow out of the way if it cannot climb on top, seems to be a problem for a tentative driver:

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: Wood Stove with Windows
« on: February 24, 2019, 05:30:34 pm »
BV, I love how you dig until you have the answer to every question! Thank you!

I am anticipating that a quick, temporary attachment of the new stove front (with window) over the door space will not be too problematic - might even be able to hinge it. The existing protruding edges of the stove box might be incorporated to hold a vertical hinge rod (a good friend gave me a batch of small diameter Ti rod :), and the existing door latch hook might be used for the new window door, too.

Just thinking that if your stove front is flat (once the door is open all the way) could you use a simple shape like a shallow rectangular cookie tin, or the lid from same? The new front "wall" of your stove, containing the window, would stand off the original stove front a little, but likely that's ok. Perhaps your draft could be similar to Bioguide's but installed in the top surface of the window box so that cool intake air would stream down the inside surface of the glass.

I should really learn how to post drawings!

And I should get back to writing reports!

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: Wood Stove with Windows
« on: February 23, 2019, 07:10:32 pm »
As you say GF - great project to start back into hobby welding with. Tidy folding will accomplish some of the shaping, I think, but the "beveled" corners might work best with a weld. Welding is so much more elegant than pop riveting - despite what Rosie says!

I will let you guys know when the mica comes in, and how suitable it looks for this job.

Hmmmm....I wonder if heat transfer is greater or less through a mica window (or any window) than through the metal stove wall?

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: Wood Stove with Windows
« on: February 22, 2019, 09:08:04 pm »
GF - do you weld? I'll happily shift from shim stock to 26 gauge if you will take a stab at welding corners and brackets, etc.

Next best thing is that I'll find out how the mica works in this application, and you can be the wiser when it comes to your build and purchase mica or tempered glass.

Avoiding sooting-up is a primary goal (he says, convincing himself of the need to figure out how to have cold intake air washing down over the inside of the glass).

It would be nice to have the entire door opening glazed, have the air intake above that, and have the entire covering hinge easily to make getting new wood in that much smoother / quicker.

BV, I have a couple of money pits that need filling too, so count me in on your heist of ill-gotten wealth!   ;)

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: Wood Stove with Windows
« on: February 20, 2019, 11:39:38 pm »
I am in, GF!

But, oops, yesterday online I bought a sheet of mica (or isinglass) to try instead of the tempered glass. I am thinking it is lighter and easier to work with. .

I have some light-weight stainless shim stock that may work to build the "frame" to support the mica window and for the draft. I've enough to share for sure, GF.

The first mod I would like to try will be a repeat of Bioguide's brilliance. Might put the draft at the top of the glass so the soot is minimized by a down-flow of cool, clean combustion air, especially considering that mica might be harder to clean than tempered glass.

Tempered wire, something with a little spring to it, will be all that is needed to hold the window&frame in place if the combo is lightweight. Like BG, I'll try attaching this wire around the existing door hinge (with the door wide open), and the door latch.

Arrgh! So many good projects, so little time!

But this one is going to jump to the front of the project cue as the resulting firelight will be beautiful.

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: Wood Stove with Windows
« on: February 18, 2019, 03:50:34 pm »
Bioguide! Great idea re the stove window.

Looks like you retrofitted, or "addition-fitted" to the opening that exists when you open your current wood stove door all the way. Is this correct?

So simple, so effective, so easy, no risk to messing up a good, functioning stove; I really respect this approach.

I resolve to do the same.

What do people think of using isinglass, or mica-glass sheet rather than tempered glass? The mica sheet would be much lighter weight, less breakable (maybe), and might be cheaper. A 6 x 6 x 0.005 inch sheet of clear mica runs $18.00 USD.

Considering trying an adjustable draft at the top of the glass as it might allow cold intake air to flow down over the inside of the "glass", thereby keeping the window cleaner. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Argh! I am already looking forward to enjoying a little of that ambiance you have created. Imagine having all of that beautiful colour and mystifying flame waiting for us just on the other side of a thin sheet of opaque metal.  No sense not taking advantage of it!

Bio, if you have any particular advice re the "window door DIY build", I am all ears. Please share if you will.

Get rid of the leather belt - it is a pain to undo and do up again! Shock-cord with a sliding toggle can work as well.

Choose a moment when have a lot of heat on board so the venting action does not affect heat balance too much to the negative.

Pull it all down from the waist.

Get 'er done!

Pull it all back into place, smile, and marvel at how "relief" is spelled "p, e, e".

It looks like it will be warmer by Friday, BV, but tonight, (-36C without wind), will be a good night to enjoy a book inside rather than experimenting with techniques of finding relief outside, me thinks!

Might try that recon once again this Sat.

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: DIY galvanized ductwork wood stove.
« on: January 26, 2019, 09:32:32 am »
"Clever" is an apt descriptor for Lonnie, I think.

You'll see regular examples of cleverness and effectiveness throughout his videos - the result of an intelligent and creative mind. In his videos he certainly takes advantage of the fact that most viewers learn more by seeing than by hearing.

His approach compliments Dave Hatfield's DIY stove building techniques.

It would be neat, if you had the disposable cash, to attempt to follow these building methods using Ti pipe and sheet to build a small box stove for a very small but comfortable solo hot tent. Maybe a goal could be a home-built solo tent, stove, pipe, and ground cover at under 8 lbs!

Tents and Shelters / Re: How cold before the stove can't keep up?
« on: January 24, 2019, 11:54:21 pm »
Another way to consider this question - how cold can it be and still have a comfy temperature inside? - might be to think of the stove as heat input to the tent, and pretty much everything else as heat loss: convection and conduction out through tent walls, doors, and vents, as well as melting and sublimation of the floor snow, if it is not covered.

The stove is just a container for a chemical reaction that releases heat. Every stove/wood/draft/damper/chimney combination has a limit to the amount of heat that it can put out in optimal conditions.

If heat loss is equal to, or less, than the amount of heat input required to make the tent space comfortable for you, then Bob's your uncle - everything is good.

If heat loss is greater than heat input then the tent will be cooler than would be comfortable.

A buddy who used to insist on trips on Lake Winnipeg, and on camping on the ice or in the bush quite near the lake, had a tent/stove combo that, with good wood, could add as much as about 60 C to the outdoor temperature with no wind, and as little as 35 C if the wind was strong.

So, if it was a dead calm night with outside temp at -30C we could get the tent to +30 if we tweaked the stove to max output with no pots on top.

But, if it was -25C with a 60 km wind leaning on the tent we could barely get the inside temp up to +10C (at sitting waist height).

I agree that camp location, wind, wood quality, a fly, or a tent liner, (or using a smaller tent!) will directly affect the temperature inside, all other things being equal.

And it sure is fun playing with all the variables, eh?!  Especially when you can stoke the fire before slipping outside in the dark to say hello to Mother Nature, complete your ablutions, and slip back into that exquisite radiant heat!

Fantastic!! I will never tire of wood stove heat.

Fire and Woodstoves / Re: The Need for Stove Baffles
« on: December 16, 2018, 11:40:59 pm »
While using a large (9ft x 20ft) group tent firing a 26"x12"x12" box stove with a big group we use both methods.

A: no special combustion air intake, instead just rely on combustion air being drawn in "naturally" through the tent material and through openings/gaps door flaps and tent skirts.

B: a 3 inch combustion air intake pipe running from under the tent wall behind the stove, along under the stove with the inside end turned up just below the stove door/draft. We use aluminum dryer vent flex pipe .... carefully.

When relying only on "A", tent air seems fresher, and relative humidity is definitely lower. The draft moving down the walls and across the floor toward the stove is worse, and the air temperature near the floor is cooler: "A" = draftier, fresher, cooler. So you end up burning more wood to compensate, if you need more heat.

All other things being equal, the interior tent air temperature is higher using "B", but so is the humidity higher, and that is usually not a good thing. The flow of cool air moving from the wall behind you across the floor beneath/beside you is slower: "B" = less drafty, stuffier, more humid, warmer, and I guess you can save on the volume of burned wood a bit.

So what works best? Both do.

When the ridge line is full of drying clothes, 10 people are inside laughing, singing, talking, breathing, and there are 2 steaming pots and a big open frying pan on the stove, you need to get rid of moisture. Stuff a cloth pot grabber in the top of the fresh air combustion pipe to stop the flow, stoke the stove with skinny splits every 10 minutes and keep it cranking out high heat. You let the tent breathe as well as it can by lowering the internal pressure. No, it is not as hot as it could be, but venting moisture takes precedence in this situation, and it is lots warm enough anyway.

Later on, maybe there are only 4 people relaxing in the tent, the cooking is long done, there is only one lidded pot heating on the stove, and only a couple of bone dry boot liners left hanging on the ridge line. Then you add a few thick long splits, close off the stove door draft a little, and pull out the cloth plug to let the fresh combustion air stream straight into the stove door draft. Now is the time to bask in the heat as the tent temperature rises, and the cool air sheeting down the walls, and coming in the tightly closed door, reduce to a trickle.

In warmer winter weather (-20s C and above) it is easier and healthier (better air quality) to just use situation "A". Maybe you end up cutting a few more armloads of wood, but that is no big deal.

In cold weather (-30s C) when you are not cooking, and not drying lots of clothes, using "B" and closing up the door flaps tight can give you much appreciated "extra" heat to bask in for a little while.

In either situation A or B, we always leave the bottom foot of the door zipper open and the two ridge vents open when it is sleep time. It is going to get cold in there soon anyway, and as ScouterGriz reminds us, when the group is tucked into sleeping bags we want the tent's inside pressure to be neutral and the tent vents open so that remnant combustion gasses never stop venting up the pipe, even as the stove cools off.

So, like everything else in our excellent online Winter Trekking community, members keep as safe as we can, do what works best for each of us, and tell others about it.

Winter Camping Clothing / Re: Noob with Footwear Questions
« on: December 10, 2018, 11:03:38 pm »
Hey Tessieia!

I'll add my "Welcome!", too!

Just thinking about this weekend....could be challenging conditions for sure: right near freezing with falling snow.

How fit are you? Body type? (Now you're reconsidering this Forum, eh? Just got on and they're pestering you with personal questions! What's with this!!????  Ha!)

Just two rhetorical questions really. Don't answer them in type.

Reason I ask is that the combo you mention for the upcoming weekend looks to me like it will keep your feet mostly dry from snowmelt and water coming in from the outside, but, as GF stated, you'll be getting wet from the inside through the day from your own perspiration. That said, for a constantly active ectomorph or mesomorph they would likely have enough insulation (assuming your neo-sock is mid-weight at least) to keep you comfy while you are active.

Once you slow down for the evening your feet may get cold, especially true if the temp is near zero and it is snowing. Many would agree that these are some of the most difficult conditions to stay comfy in!

Can you bring something else to change into for standing around in the evening? Hmmm... sorel-type boots are too heavy. How about a second pr of large, thick, dry, loose wool socks with a light weight synthetic-insulated booty with a water-proof sole and rand over-top? Or that big pr of dry socks with insoles inside a pr of Neos or Actons

I guess if it is 0C and snowing you might find me electing for all of us to cram into the biggest tent, fire up the stove within reach of the vestibule, enjoy a few hot chocolates livened-up with a little something, and have a poker tourney till sleep time.

Cold and dry is such a relief from zero and wet!

Take an umbrella?

Let us know how it goes!


Maybe it is the craziness of the logistics of such a meet-up is what appeals about it!  I am daydreaming too much about trips post retirement when schedules won't be so constrained ... and SAT communications will be even more varied and cheaper.

If a transit of WCPP ever comes to be from our end, I'll let you know our proposed route and ask for your opinion regarding the Eastern side. Too bad that there has been so much more logging done in the last 40 years, or so it appears on satellite images.

Getting the OK from the local trappers would be essential, even if not legally required. It would be valuable, too, to know where their typical winter trails were. Winter portages can be so much safer, and are not always obvious if there isn't any visible snow machine evidence.

Here's to dreaming and hoping :)

Hey Harlan,

You are exploring the East side of Woodland Caribou on your many and well-videoed trips.

Thanks for these vids, I really enjoy them!

Some of us from Manitoba are tripping on the south west side of WCPP.

Maybe we should start dreaming of a mid-Park rendezvous in a not-too distant future?!

Wouldn't it be neat for parties to winter-trek multiple days from each side, and meet in the middle?!

I'll bring something to toast our good fortune with ;)

Other Winter Camping Gear / Re: candle stick holders
« on: November 25, 2018, 12:57:03 pm »
BV's got that right - There is no question that LEDs are safer, quicker, more effective for specific and spot lighting (cooking, searching inside a pack/box/etc.) and lighter weight for longer trips than are candles. The smallest re-chargeable luci light or luminaid style (perhaps with the inflatable plastic box removed) seem to need relatively little time in the sun to be ready for another evening. No breaking, dripping, fumbling....

But the ambiance a lowly candle stub provides is soothingly wonderful in my mind.

Maybe with recent attention given to reducing shorter wave-length light (blue & green) from our screen devices, an LED company will come up with a camping light that gives an array of light that is as appealing as the light from a candle flame?!

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