Living tiny gives you the freedom to live your life on your own terms. Brent and Lindsey's shuttle bus lets them explore the country in comfort at a moment's notice. Check out their story below and on their Instagram @shuttle_and_crew.
Tell us about yourselves and your rig.
Brent and Lindsay Miller. I (Brent) am a farmer practicing regenerative agriculture, and Lindsay is a Clinical Therapist. We take every chance we get to head out and explore remote places around the country in our 1995 Ford E350 shuttle bus.
Why did you decide to build out a shuttle bus? How is it going so far?
My first experiences living tiny were while thru hiking the Appalachian and Pacific Crest Trails. As we started to grow more roots and had more responsibilities, we decided to convert a bus to give us the ability to travel at a moments notice. We currently live tiny part time. During the winter, the farm season winds down so we use the time to travel in our bus.
How did you decide you wanted to put a tiny wood stove in your rig?
Our Tiny Wood Stove is our only heat source in the bus. I once spent a winter living in the back of my pickup truck heating with propane. I would wake up in the morning with the entire truck camper covered in condensation. This made the decision to install a wood stove in our bus an easy one.
Why did you choose a Dwarf stove in particular?
After researching every other tiny wood stove on the market it stood out among the rest. Our friend installed the Dwarf 4kW in their camper and I experienced how efficient it was. The ash pan and large viewing window was a big selling point as well. The TWS staff was also very helpful when deciding what stove was right for our space.
How did your installation go?
I had experience installing several wood stoves in various homes so installation was very straight forward and easy. After building the platform for the stove and installing heat shields on surrounding walls, we bolted the stove to its platform.
The most nerve-racking part of the installation was cutting an 8 inch hole in the roof of our bus. Along with the stove I had ordered TWS's rv/bus roof exit installation kit and a few other flue parts to fit our specific install. The kit came with everything we needed and was very easy to put together.
The TWS team was very helpful along the way as well. My main concern was how the flue exiting the roof would handle high winds while driving 70mph down the highway. The TWS staff gave me great advice and the reassurance i needed. Outside of having to get creative on how to reduce rattling of internal parts and damper knobs as we drive down bumpy roads, it has worked flawlessly.
How has your wood stove changed your space?
Since we do most of our tiny living in the winter its hard to imagine our bus without the tiny wood stove. The ability to have a warm flickering fire makes our space feel like home no matter where we are parked.
How do you like having a wood stove in your bus?
We love it! I have been heating with wood for most of my life and I get a lot of satisfaction from cutting wood and tending the fire. There is nothing like being parked in the middle of nowhere when its freezing cold outside and being snuggled up next to the stove with a good book.
What would you suggest for others building out a similar space?
I think a tiny wood stove the best option for off grid sustainable living, and I think it's the most comfortable heat you can have in your space. My main advice for folks thinking about a mobile wood stove is to include space in your RV/bus for wood storage. It was important for me to be able to stockpile a week or so worth of wood so I don't have to constantly worry about whether we have enough. This is especially important if you are traveling through the desert, or other places with fragile ecosystems that don't have abundant wood sources.
Heating with wood is very romantic but the reality is that it takes effort. There is no turning it on and setting a thermostat. Depending on the temperature outside, plan on waking a time or two in the night to stoke the fire. It takes a little time and work but is by far the most rewarding and comfortable way to heat a space.
Interested in a small stove for your tiny space? Contact us on the form below and we can help you sort through all the details in getting the perfect stove and installation configuration for your unique space!