I’m pleased to report our new kitchen woodstove is working brilliantly.

What? A new stove? No, it’s new to us, but it’s second-hand, and was probably made in the 1970’s. It has seen very little use though. Our old Rosieres was just getting more and more difficult to use, because the seals around the top cast-iron plate had long ago ceased to exist.
Despite having thoroughly cleaned the chimney, we found that the only way we could get the stove going in the mornings was to open all the doors and windows, switch off the newly-installed VMC (extractor fan), and wait for half an hour before the stovepipe was hot enough to draw properly. If we missed out just one of these steps, the kitchen filled with smoke.

So last week LSS had a look on Leboncoin.fr and we spotted a very reasonably-priced kitchen woodburner for sale in a village about 60km away. We asked our neighbour to help with loading and unloading, as these things must weigh nearly 200kg. As it turned out, he was very pleased we had asked him to come along to assist, because the person selling the stove also had a small forge for sale, which was just what our neighbour had been looking for! There was sufficient room on the trailer for the forge, so everyone was happy.

Not only that, but the stove we bought also came with a stainless steel stovepipe! Our old one was definitely not stainless steel, being a very rusty brown colour!

Both stove and rusty stovepipe have now been consigned to the scrap-metal junk-pile. The new stove is installed and functioning, and not only that, not a whisp of smoke escapes when we light it! It seems to put out a lot more heat than the old one, and the dinner LSS made yesterday (burgers and potato wedges) seemed to taste even better than before.

Some progress has also been made with the household water supply; I have become a dab hand at soldering copper pipes together, and water has now reached our new “ballon” in the loft. Hopefully by the end of next week we’ll have nice, clean, transparent borehole water on tap in the kitchen, which will make a nice change from the rust-coloured mouse-flavoured well water we’ve been using in the bath for the past seven months.

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