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Alaska files suit against OWB owners

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by mikefrommaine, Jan 15, 2013.

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  1. simple.serf

    simple.serf Feeling the Heat

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    My town currently has no regulations, other than the dumb NYS rules. We did have someone who installed one that was smoking up the local school, setting off the fire alarms, etc. Legal action had to be taken there.

    I am looking at wood/coal options, both because I like the option of using either fuel and because they are exempt from the NYS laws.

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  2. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

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    I think it's more important that government work with the people, not against them. In this case, both the boilers passed state inspections, and are sold legally here.

    If they remove those boilers, the next day another neighbor could install those exact same boilers legally...

    They tried to pass a blanket law last year that would of potentially banned ALL wood stoves/boilers...

    It's much harder to regulate wood burners, because a lot of the "burn quality issues" relate to the users and how they burn. Which is why it is so hard for the state to regulate wood, especially in a place where so many people burn wood to keep warm.
    Taylor Sutherland likes this.
  3. kopeck

    kopeck Minister of Fire

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    Is that the decent size dairy far right on RT 1? Really nice looking, well kept place?

    If he's heating all that on one boiler...that's impressive. I'm surprised they haven't devised a log loading system. Stick one and in and it just keeps feeding it's self. :)

    I guess I'm most surprised, given his heating load and location he doesn't have some sort of chip burning setup.

    K
  4. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    Yeah sounds like the place. It's kept pretty clean and nice looking all things considered. Most of the farm buildings are red. Bar-Bet-Tom Dairy Farm is the name of the place.


    I don't know exactly how it's all plumbed in or what size/brand of boiler even. I've only been over there a few times. If I get a chance I'll ask my brother if he knows more about it.

  5. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    Interesting read. I have to wonder, if oil were cheaper up there......think pipeline......... would this be such a problem? I worked with a guy from Alaska, and he said oil was even more expensive there as it is here. Keep stuffing the green wood in there:rolleyes:

    "Lucy.....someone have some splainen' todo!".......... Rickey Ricardo

    TS
  6. Benwa907

    Benwa907 New Member

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    Fairbanks
    My dad just had a heating oil delivery a couple days ago and he paid $4.12 per gallon for heating oil!! I think during the summer it had gotten down to around $3.50 but that's still pretty high for a state full of oil and gas!!
  7. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    Those people being the ones who burn green wood in an OWB? ;)
  8. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    This picture illustrates (in a small way) what happens in Fairbanks and North Pole. I took it last Sunday when it was -8* here.
    You can see how the cold air traps the smoke in a layer. The farm in the picture sits in a little "valley" where the grade of the land falls off to the north toward the creek behind the buildings in the picture.
    The image quality is pretty poor from my cell phone but you get the idea. The CB7620 or 7260 or whatever it is is fogging away on the left and the haze is just hanging in place even with a little west wind trying to push it.

    Also of note; you can see the stack from the oil boiler in the barn to the right emitting steam vapor. That great big CB is not able to keep up with the demand and the oil boiler comes on to heat the building load + dump hot water back into the CB.
    We did the install on the oil boiler back in 2005 or 6 when oil was $1.79/gallon. The owner was looking for options when oil hit $4 a couple years ago and had the CB installed by the local dealer. Obviously, it does not work as intended.

    It's things like this that are and will continue to give wood burning in general a black eye and if users don't start adopting "best practices", meaning good equipment and seasoned wood, it will be no ones fault but their own when wood burning gets banned entirely. The equipment is out there. Burning green wood helps no one.


    063.jpg
  9. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

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    Our gas/oil is usually in the top 10% of pricing per gallon apparently. We tax the oil companies, and they tax us indirectly. The system works.
  10. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    In that photo, how much of that is just steam/heat and not smoke though? My chimney will "smoke" like that when it's cold out.
  11. Fred61

    Fred61 Minister of Fire

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    That haze hanging just above the barn roof ain't steam!
  12. nate379

    nate379 Guest

  13. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    This issue is one of many that draws into focus who we are as individuals and who we are as community. Are we more like a python, purely focused on the self, advancing our own self interest and satisfying our own needs regardless of impact on others? Or are we more like a hive of honey bees, focused on dividing labor, protecting the entire hive community, and ever willing to sacrifice ourselves for the good of the whole so that the community has the best chance of surviving?

    I lean in the direction that in the long run the more we act like the hive of honey bees, that is act in community, the better off all of us will be and we then will have the best outcome for us as individuals and for our community, state, and nation.
  14. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    As long as my house is warm I don't really care if the chimney was rolling black coal like a diesel truck or spitting out rainbows and kittens. :p

  15. Downeast Farmer

    Downeast Farmer New Member

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    which is why we'll always need government....
    Benwa907 likes this.
  16. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    Interesting discussion we have going here.......

    TS
  17. BillsWS

    BillsWS Feeling the Heat

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    My 2 cents. Dry wood. I see OWB just puking heavy, heavy smoke. You know they are burning wet wood. We burned dry wood in ours and there was hardly any smoke at all. But yet I'll see the same make/model just pouring out the smoke. They should send moisture nazi's to your house with hatchets, moisture meters and ticket books. THAT would make way more sense. Like I said, just my 2 cents (in this economy I'll concede its 1 cent worth). ::P
    webby3650 likes this.
  18. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    I have a neighbor that has a well known OWB, I never see smoke rolling. Another neighbor has another well know brand and it pours smoke. Smoke will actually settle in my field, I'm about 400 yards away from the boiler. I couldn't agree more, wet wood is the biggest problem with these units. Another issue I think is that most around here over size the boiler, then when it needs heat, it chugs away.
  19. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    I'll say and agree to the following;

    *The OWB industry is its own worst enemy at this point because they had a huge part in creating the monster that now exists. For years I have heard.....and still hear..... the salesmen and dealers representing nearly all brands make statements like "Our boiler will burn ANYTHING!" or "Our boiler does BETTER with green wood". Now that they have indoctrinated nearly an entire generation of wood burners with this tripe, they are beginning to back track and say, "Welllllll......these newer units actually need to have dry wood to burn right". All I can say is you've made your bed, now lay in it. Time to pay the piper for all the junk and misinformation you promoted over the years. Time to start promoting best practices, building good equipment and making honest claims about it.

    *The picture that I posted is most definitely not ice fog. I've been on that farm many times and have actually seen brown snow 100 yards downwind from that beast. The fog is a massive cloud of particulates emitted by the wood burner.
    I think I've told about a family (4 brothers who all live within a mile of their business) that all own OWB's from the major company. Their truck repair shop uses the largest unit made by this manufacturer and that thing alone will obliterate the sun once in a while. They live on a low level stretch of land along a state highway and between the 5 OWB's they have burning, I have seen the smoke so thick there that traffic actually has to slow down due to the haze.

    *The use of green unseasoned wood is more than likely a larger problem than the poor engineering and design of most OWB's. Heck, my favorite farmer manages to almost plug the flues on the Garns he heats his barn with due to cutting one day and burning the next.......(my poor babies.......) :(

    *Attitudes of indifference to the welfare of our fellow human beings speak loudly about the character of an individual. We are ALL called to be our "brothers keeper". It is our responsibility to seek the best outcome for everyone involved in a given situation. It is what separates us from the animals and makes us worthy to be called human.
    My dad always said, and beat into my head the following statement regarding business and it applies to all of life also. His words were these......"Profit is the greatest amount of good, for the greatest amount of people". In other words, true profit, not just monetary, is profit that benefits all parties involved not just the seller of a given product and not just the user who is saving a buck at the expense of someone else.

    *In this day and age with booming population growth and dwindling resources worldwide, we must all consider things like true life cycle costs of the product we purchase rather than merely looking at the first up front cost, as the only cost.

    The soap box is now open..
  20. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    I've only been to Fairbanks a dozen times if that so not familiar with that farm/truck shop.
  21. TheMightyMoe

    TheMightyMoe Minister of Fire

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    Fairbanks, Alaska.
    The hospital can get a similar haze. Not to say it is or isn't pollutants floating the air.
  22. goosegunner

    goosegunner Minister of Fire

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    Likewise, If you had neighbors with chimneys doing the same thing and blowing to your house it would be fine with you right?

    gg
  23. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    My sarcasm obviously flew over a few people's heads!
    Taylor Sutherland likes this.
  24. tmudd

    tmudd Member

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    I stand on the side of cleaner burning standards. Where I live,we are the goverment. We vote for our neighbors,our friends, our co workers, our relatives and sometimes complete strangers to every office. It all starts at the local level here, county road and bridges judges ,school boards, then state level. There are a lot of elected officials that I disagree with philosophically but agree with on the core principles. There is almost no zoning and that means no property protection. We just passed a sewer ordinance which means your staight pipe can't dump out at the property line anymore. Now that is progress. Clean air, water and safety---these are the minimum standards to ask of your goverment. The whole idea that things have to be unregulated to make them affordable is nonsense and a false choice on our resources. Without reasonable regulations every corporation would maximize profits- the slash and burn theory . When elected officals break their promises, I vote for somebody else. Everything you want to do in this world is possible, and all cost are passed on to consumers. You pay for it one way or another.

    As far as wood burning technology is concerned, The woodpart as fuel is a lot of work, I don't know why anyone would not want to maximize efficiency and minimize the work part of it all. The Europeans have been playing this movie for centuries and that is why they are kicking ass in technology. I suspect when our population densities reach theirs we will then make better resouce choices.

    TLM- Happy gassifier owner with 1000 gallons storage.
    Downeast Farmer likes this.
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