2. Split it to the right size: Next, split the wood to the proper size for your burner. For most efficient wood stoves, this is usually no more than six inches measured at the largest cross-sectional dimension. A range of piece sizes is best so that when kindling a fire or reloading on a coal bed you have some smaller pieces that will help you achieve the desirable instant ignition. A selection of sizes from three to six inches in diameter for wood stoves will probably serve you well. Keep in mind that firewood only begins to dry seriously once it is cut and split to the right size because in log form the moisture is held in by the bark. So, when buying wood, ask when the wood was cut split and properly stacked to get an idea of how ready it is for burning. For this reason, experienced wood burners like to get their wood in the early spring so they can manage the drying process themselves.