Question sent in from Ellen-
Hi Stove Guy, Your website is a great resource for first-time buyers like me (and probably long-time owners, as well!). Thank you for compiling this information and for sharing your personal expertise. I am shopping for a wood stove for a small house. The main level is 800 sq. feet. There is a converted attic space that is an additional 500 sq. feet (also a basement that is 800 sq. feet if that is relevant, but I have no plans to use this as living space). I have pretty much narrowed my options down to two: the Vermont Castings Intrepid II and the Hearthstone Craftsbury. They both seem appropriate for the space I need to heat and they both seem to be high quality with low emissions. I am torn… I really like the top-loading feature of the Intrepid II, but the Craftsbury is bigger, which I like because I want this to be a focal point of the living room (which may not be an issue either way– it’s 200 sq feet). I am wondering if you have any advice or points to consider? Any thoughts are very appreciated! Thanks, Ellen
Well Ellen, they are both great stoves. I do love the top loader in the Vermont Castings as you know, but unless there is a really good reason I typically shy away from the catalytic stoves because of the replacement costs. The Vermont Castings Intrepid II is a catalytic stove. The Hearthstone Craftsbury is not.
So my recommendation in your situation would be the Craftsbury not just because of the non-catalytic system but also because I would go with your gut on how it is going to fit into your room. Your new stove will be off more than it is on and having it look right in the room is critical.
I used a Craftsbury for a few years in my own house as the sole source of heat and was extremely impressed with it.
Hope that helps,
The Stove Guy