A nice little tool for our new wood stove
I found a great tool for getting a wood fire going. It goes by the the rather cumbersome name of "Fire Dragon Bellows / Poker". Apparently the generic name for this tool is a "blow poke," which sounds like something that should not be mentioned in polite company.
Anyway, this is basically a hollow fire poker, with a brass mouthpiece on the the end, so you can blow air into the fire with pretty good precision. Here's a picture:
This one is less expensive than the others I found online - about US$40. (I didn't find anything like this at either of our local fireplace stores. And it's been really helpful for me since our first load of firewood has proven to be a little damp. It's not green wood, but I suspect it got rained on at some point.
At any rate, I really like this thing. We've mostly only been burning wood at night. If I remember and have time, I toss a log into the coals in the morning before I leave for work. Then by the time I get home, it's lightly charred and well dried. And surprisingly, even if I don't toss a log in, I still find hot coals at 5pm. With the remaining embers and the blower, I can get a fire going without matches or a lighter.
More on some other topics when I get a chance. Right now I'm exhausted.