Review of Hunter Kestrel Stove

Very nice looking stove, shame about the design faults.

Daniel Davis

I have owned my stove for nearly a year now, I first spotted the kestrel in the shiny brochure in my local stove shop, calculated the size I needed and the deal was done, fantastic service from the stove shop and a few days later a fantastic looking stove arrived. It is a very pretty stove, the finish, and design are perfect. Burns wood very efficiently, when you burn it right there is hardly any ash to empty, easy to light, gives out heat and warms the room very quickly all I need!

but.... there are a few design flaws, firstly the handles and top air control are very hot and require an oven glove to open, if you do not have a flue damper you have to fill the holes with supplied bolts which spoil the look a bit, the levelling legs are just upsidedown bolts and are near impossible to adjust, the riddle system is a bit of a pain, you pull the lever back and forth to choose its position but it snags on a bolt at the back and doesn't move back into position until you wait for the stove to cool and set it back manually. Also where the riddle bar exits the stove is a hole, the riddle bar is the size of a penny but the hole it goes through is the size of a 2 pence, obviously designed like this but takes away the point of a sealed door.

The firebox is a good size, but the grate is at the same level as the bottom of the door and during a fire wood embers tumble and touch the glass which then stains the glass, and of course when you need to refuel these embers have to fall out onto the hearth, if only the grate was half an inch lower problem would be stopped.

The stove is brilliant at what it does, all of its features work, but the height of the grate really does spoil the stove, the airwash works flawlessly but cannot stop the tumbling embers touching the glass, if Hunter could make an improved version it would be easy to recommend to somebody else.

Overall rating:

3.5 flames

Build Quality 4 flames (avg 4.7)
Quality of finish 5 flames (avg 5)
Value for money 3 flames (avg 4.3)
Ease of use 5 flames (avg 4.7)
Ease of lighting 5 flames (avg 4.7)
Firebox size 3 flames (avg 4.3)
How well does the airwash work 5 flames (avg 5)
Controllability 2 flames (avg 4)
Handle operation 5 flames (avg 4.3)
How likely are you to buy it again? 2 flames (avg 4)
What is your overall satisfaction? 3 flames (avg 4.3)