WhatStove?

Review of Dean Forge Dartmoor W5

Great little performer.

2 years ago

We've had this model of stove for nearly 4 years now. The design caught our eye initially. We have a 1950's house so didn't want anything too modern but neither did we want something ornate and traditional. This design seems nicely neutral in that respect.

The big window is kept really clear by the excellent air-wash and despite not being a large stove, the width (and perfectly flat-top) allows for a medium sized kettle and casserole either side of the flue collar. This was great during a 3 day power cut after local storms. The heat is ample for our lounge during the evening and if lit in the morning during cold weekends it will slowly heat the rest of the house during the course of the day. It's very controllable and can either roar or tick-over when you're familiar with the controls and the idiosyncrasies of the logs in your basket.

It's simplicity is welcome to me although some might rue the lack of a "cool-touch" door handle or a nice neat ash box when cleaning out, (this requires a little fireplace shovel and bucket). It's very solidly built and lighting it in our 4th winter, the key moving parts (door hinges, air controls, door handle) have shown no sign of wear or deterioration. The installer was a bit peeved when one of the adjustable levelling bolts in a rear foot bent on its weld but this was remedied with a strip of lead under the foot and has been long forgotten about.

As with most stoves, this one seems sensitive to the design and layout of flue. We were fortunate that our existing chimney was straight and large enough to accommodate a pumice-lined flue. It absolutely roars on lighting. My mum has the same stove but with an external stainless flue incorporating a couple of bends. It doesn't draw anything like as well, smokes a bit with an open door and the air-wash isn't as effective. Arguably it's easier to control on "tick-over" though.

So would I recommend one? -We're thinking of extending and getting another stove at the other end of the house. -I'd definitely go to a Dean forge stockist first. Very happy.

Overall rating:

5 flames

Build Quality 4 flames (avg 4.8)
Quality of finish 5 flames (avg 5)
Value for money 5 flames (avg 5)
Ease of use 5 flames (avg 5)
Ease of lighting 5 flames (avg 5)
Firebox size 5 flames (avg 4.8)
How well does the airwash work 5 flames (avg 5)
Controllability 5 flames (avg 5)
Handle operation 4 flames (avg 4.6)
How likely are you to buy it again? 5 flames (avg 5)
What is your overall satisfaction? 5 flames (avg 5)