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Ideal Steel Hybrid
Winner of the 2013 Wood Stove Design Challenge


Award-Winning  The IDEAL STEEL Hybrid was developed in 2013 as Woodstock Soapstone Company’s entry in the Woodstove Design Challenge. The Design Challenge had 14 finalists from 5 countries competing for a $25,000 grand prize awarded for the best overall performance in 5 criteria: affordability, efficiency, emissions, innovation and market appeal. The Ideal Steel Hybrid was the grand prize winner!

High Performance   The IDEAL STEEL Hybrid has a record 82% EPA tested efficiency and average emissions of 1.04 gm/hr. It will easily burn 12-14 hours, and will heat large areas comfortably. It’s high efficiency means that it will produce up to 131,000 more BTUs per day than a standard non-catalytic stove.

Affordable   To make the IDEAL STEEL Hybrid affordable, we changed from cast iron to steel as our basic building material. Steel costs about half as much per pound as cast iron. We believe that the IDEAL STEEL Hybrid is the most efficient, cleanest, and longest burning stove in its price range (less than $2,000).

Standard Color Options  To view the IDEAL STEEL Hybrid standard color options, visit our Ideal Steel Color Viewer.  

Custom Artwork  We offer low cost customization on the IDEAL STEEL Hybrid. You can choose a design for the sides, the top, and the andirons from our design book, or you can design you own parts using our GEARED 2U DESIGN SERVICE.  We can produce almost any two dimensional graphic design for your stove!

Click here to see our GEARED 2U DESIGN BOOK



HxWxD (Max.Leg Height): 35.5"x29.5"x27.5"
HxWxD (Min. Leg Height): 30.5"x29.5"x27.5" (Ash Pan Not Available)
Leg Height Adjustment: 5" (in 1" increments)
Firebox Size: 3.2 Cubic ft.
Wood Length (Maximum): 22"
Burn Time: 10-14 hrs
Area Heated: up to 2,200 sq.ft.
BTU Output: 13,017-60,530/hr (per EPA tests)
EPA Efficiency: 82% (per EPA tests)
EPA Emissions: 1.04 grams/hr (per EPA tests)
Combustion System: Hybrid (Catalyst & Secondary Air)
Flue Exit: Top or Back
Flue Size: 6"
Flue Height to Center (Max Leg Height): 29.5"
Flue Height to Center (Min Leg Height): 24.5"
Window Size (viewable): 12.25"H x 17"W
Draft Control: Manual
Weight: 620 lbs.
Loading Door: Front Only
Ash Pan: Optional (cannot be retrofit to stove)
Rear Heat Shield: Optional              Bottom Heat Shield: Standard
Stove Rear Clearance (No Protection): 14"
Stove Rear Clearance (w/ Heat Shield Kit): 6"
Stove Side Clearance: 19"                Stove Corner Clearance: 6"
Hearth Front Clearance:16" (from stove body)   Hearth Sides: 6"
Hearth Back Clearance: 6"                          Hearth R Value: 0.41
2100 Degree Stainless Foil Catalyst: Standard
Automatic Catalyst Air: Standard
Multi-temp Cooktop: Optional
Heat Transfer Radiator: Standard
Load Door/Bypass Lever Interlock: Standard
Easy Catalyst Access: Just Lift the Top Lid!
Choice of Colors: Charcoal/Black/Blue/Brown/Copper/Metallic Gray, and Surf Sand, plus many more custom color options
Click here for our Ideal Steel Color Viewer
Customizable Sides, Cooktop, and Andirons: Design Book or Individual Requests


Ideal Steel Beta Stove
Doug K., Newbury, VT
Colors: custom Almond Body/Surf Sand Accents
Art Scheme: Fleur de Lis

Boulter Stove, VA
Colors: Charcoal Body/Charcoal Accents
Art Scheme: Customer submitted design

Ideal Steel Beta Stove
(with Gear Head Crew)
Lincoln C., Bethel, VT
Colors: Charcoal Body/Moss Green Accents
Art Scheme: Labrador Retriever

Plus, you get options and performance not available in other steel stoves:

  1. Top or Back Vent Option
  2. High Heat Output
  3. Adjustable Leg Height
  4. High Efficiency/Low Emissions
  5. Optional Ash Pan
  6. Customizable (both design & colors)


The IDEAL STEEL is a hybrid. It has (1) a catalytic combustor, (2) a secondary combustion system, and (3) automatic catalyst air. Together they provide enhanced viewing pleasure, increased output and efficiency, decreased fuel consumption, and clean burning.

In addition to record woodstove efficiency, the IDEAL STEEL Hybrid has a large 3.2 cubic foot firebox, will burn easily for over 12 hours on a load of wood, and will heat large living spaces.

The cut-away drawing below shows the basic elements of the combustion design.

Secondary combustion occurs across the top of the firebox. The fireback slopes so that you can easily see the secondary flames. Secondary air is preheated by passing across the back of the stove before entering the fireback.

Any exiting smoke and particulates not burned by secondary combustion must pass through a catalytic combustor, where they are ignited at temperatures as low as 400 degrees. The catalytic combustor is made of stainless steel foil, tested and approved for continuous operation at 2,100 degrees F. The thickness of the foil is approximately 50 microns (the thickness of a human hair), which is why it heats up and “lights off” so quickly.

Both the secondary combustion and the catalytic combustor produce heat. Without a hybrid system, some of this heat would be lost up the chimney.

The catalytic combustor is located right under the cooktop, so you get the full benefit of its heat. A radiator also transmits catalytic heat to the sides of the stove. Complete combustion, achievable only through a hybrid combustion system, and good heat exchange are what makes for record 82% efficiency. If the catalyst pointed toward the stack, as opposed to the cooktop, more heat would be lost and efficiency would drop.

The catalytic bypass damper interlocks with the loading door. You cannot open the loading door without opening the bypass damper first. This helps to ensure smoke free loading.


Everyone’s house, hearth, and décor is different, so, why not your stove? Lots of people decorate their mantels, their refrigerators, bookshelves, and dining tables with images, photos, symbols, and memorabilia and centerpieces that are important to them. So, why not do the same thing with your stove?

The IDEAL STEEL Hybrid is the first woodstove that can accommodate owner designed artwork. The sides, andirons, and the cooktop burners can incorporate your design visions. All you have to do is send us a drawing, photograph or image of what you would like to see on your stove and let our artists do the rest. If you are not feeling creative, you can choose a design from our GEARED 2U Design Book. And if you are really adventuresome, you can create a “Trophy Stove” like the Moose Stove and the “Poisson de Manon” pictured at the right. In any event, you get to choose between the 4 basic design options below, and then add any of our standard colors. To view the Ideal Steel Standard Colors, click here.

The design options are:

  • Essential Stove: We’re always happy to make a stove with no ornamentation. All you have to do is tell us what color you want.
  • Design Book: Choose a design from our, always growing, Design Book. There are a lot of good ideas there.
  • Custom Design: We have a Geared 2U Design Service. Tell us what you want, and give us an image, drawing or photo to work with, and let us show you what we can do.
  • Trophy Stove: We can extend the stove well beyond the confines of the basic box. Whether it’s for a special occasion or a special person, we can make your stove into a Moose, a Fish, a Genie, an Angel, or a Mermaid.

The IDEAL STEEL Hybrid offers high efficiency heat, a great fire-viewing experience, clean burning and an opportunity to express your own design ideas.