How do you refurbish an old wood cook stove? (pic heavy)

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thelight
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How do you refurbish an old wood cook stove? (pic heavy)

Post by thelight » Sun Mar 02, 2014 11:32 am

I found a great deal on an old Majestic wood cook stove (model FS-121H) on Craigslist for $150, and just got it home yesterday. It's in fantastic shape, overall, and could probably be put into use as it is. However, I want this thing to last another lifetime if possible. The question is: What should I do to ensure it lasts? This will be the primary cook stove and secondary heat source in my BOL, which gets weekend use a few times a month. Here are some pics of it as it stands now.

Picture of the front. Perfect enamel, no dings or scratches.
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Picture of the back. Mostly just surface rust, with a bit of heavier rust in one area.
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Picture of the front, doors open. You can see it's in excellent condition, with just a bit of surface rust here and there. The top itself will definitely need to be refinished.
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Detail of the top. It's in great shape. Just needs some sanding and new paint.
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The firebox and underside of the cook top.
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Detail of the water tank. I think it should come out and get wirewheeled. Should it? Should it be painted if I do that? What about the inside?
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Worst rust on the whole stove. This angled piece will need to be replaced with some new metal since it holds the backsplash on.
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The bottom of the ash pan will need to be replaced as well. That's simple, though.
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At a minimum, I'm planning on cleaning up the stove top by sanding/blasting it down and repainting it with high temperature stove paint. I also plan on replacing the bottom of the ash pan and welding some angle bracket to the spot in the back right corner. My skills in this area are limited, but I have friends who have offered to help and teach me, so this is also a fantastic learning opportunity.

Specific questions would be:
  • Should I take the whole thing apart and clean every piece?
  • Should I blast/clean the entire interior of the firebox area? If I do, how should it be finished, if at all?
  • Does the underside of the cooktop also get painted? If not, does it get treated at all?
  • What do I do about that water tank? both interior and exterior. I'd like to plumb it in as a backup water heater if it holds pressure.
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Re: How do you refurbish an old wood cook stove? (pic heavy)

Post by TacAir » Sun Mar 02, 2014 1:30 pm

Looks like you got a good deal. I would suggest you consider a complete tear-down, professional sand-blasting and repaint. Replace the ash box with a new piece of metal and spend a few more bucks to replace the water tank with a stainless steel version as well.

You might want to also consider welding a small loop on the bottom while it is torn down you you can secure it in your mostly unoccupied place - I'd hate to see your new stove ripped off while you are away.... Theft from unoccupied cabins has become a real problem here - meth-heads are becoming a plague.

Finding a stove with good ceramic is quite lucky - hope it turns out well for you. Good luck!
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Re: How do you refurbish an old wood cook stove? (pic heavy)

Post by Halfapint » Sun Mar 02, 2014 4:57 pm

That is AWESOME! Good find and congrats....
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