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Anyone Else Using a Non-EPA stove?

Post in 'Classic Wood Stove Forums (prior to approx. 1993)' started by xjcamaro89, Nov 3, 2011.

  1. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    I have a Century Heating Whistler stove, 110,000 BTU. And everyone here talks about their EPA stoves, secondary tubes, cats, and all that. Just wondered if anyone else is running something like mine and what are your experiences.

    Thanks!

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  2. nola mike

    nola mike Feeling the Heat

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  3. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    Well mine isnt a old stove, its a new stove, just non EPA
  4. leeave96

    leeave96 Minister of Fire

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    +1

    I also liked it when you could post pictures and chat about your stove in this forum without having it moved or closed. Now you got to visit multiple forums to keep-up. It makes it harder to have a continuous conversation with everyone. I should think if it is woodstove related, chat, pictures, advice, etc. it would be in one place - but it ain't my forum - which is probably a good thing... ;)

    Bill
  5. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    I have a pre-EPA Blaze King King. It eats a lot of wood and makes some creosote, but really cranks out the heat. I can get a 16 hour burn pretty easily in the dead of winter. This time of year I can do 12 on 1/2 load if I keep the fans off.

    If I had to replace this one, I would definitely get an EPA stove but there's no ROI on it for me. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to have a newer stove, but this one serves me just fine.
  6. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Growing Pains guys. If it weren't for the seperation of some things, threads get completely lost as there would be 3 pages worth of new threads in one room per day. The "cream" stays at the top. Trying to keep more threads up in that range is the goal. Just happens with more and more members which is a good problem IMO!

    pen
  7. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    My stove burns through the wood fast too. But im lucky if i get a 2hr burn on a load, but maybe im not loading completely correct. I just know how to work my stove to get max heat out of it quickly. Because we only burn in the evenings and weekends so its quick and hot. But definately saves on oil.
  8. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    I had a non-EPA stove until this season. Mine had controls on it, where yours does not. Do you have a thermometer on the stovetop? 2hrs seems like you might be hitting super high temps! If you do not have a damper over the stove, then I would get one and mess with closing it a little after you get your burn going. If you do have a damper, then maybe get another. It wouldn't be horribly strange to have two in a row on a stove with no adjustments!

    Just don't choke it down too much, you still want to have decent stovetop temps to prevent creosote buildup!
  9. oilstinks

    oilstinks Feeling the Heat

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    I got both. A non epa sierra and an epa englander. I like both but my sierra honestly uses a lot more wood than my englander. Im not pushing either one its what ever you like but i would like to replace my wood eater with an epa just because it takes so much dang wood.
  10. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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  11. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    The stove gets its air through slots the go across the stove right above the door, and it air washes the door. I experimented last year with a bar that i could adjust how much of those slots were exposed to control air intake, but it didnt work out like i planned, maybe due to my damper situation at the time (read below).

    I actually moved the damper prior to this season. Prior the damper rod ran though the stove's cast collar and was restricted from closing more than 60% due to the mounting bolts for the collar being in the way. So i moved it up about 4" and mounted it through the stove pipe giving me the ability to close it all the way. I know last year i probably burned it a little too hot some times due to the lack of not being able to close the damper, i could just smell it. But this year ive sort of got a system down, now i dont know what the stove top and flue temps should be because no where in the manual does it say what it should be. I ran all last year without guages. I got 2 guages this year, one for the stove top and one for the flue. I just got two of the same guage, because when i ordered them online it didnt say if they were for one or the other. But after getting them it looks like they are for the flue because of a certain part of the guage says burn zone and creosote zone and over fire zone. They are magnetic so im thinking they should be close on both points.

    Now what i do it leave the flue damper all the way open, and start the fire with the door opened a crack until it gets going, then i shut the door and let it go, i wait until the flue temps get right into the "Burn Zone" according to the guage which seems to be right around 250-300* (i think) by that time my stove is getting up to 400-500*. At that point i have a decent fire going and i throw a couple decent splits in, shut the door and close the flue the whole way (Now there are open spots on the damper and some space around the edges of the damper, so its not truely completely shut) Now what happens now is what i feel as a more controlled burn. After i load it and shut the flue the whole way the flames calm down nicely and look like a nice calm slow fire. The flue temps hold at the 250-300* mark and the stove top will run between 500-600*. This will cruise like this depending on the splits, maybe 2 hours, even when the wood is almost burned up, as long as there are really light almost invisable blue flames, the stove top and flue will still hold close to those temps but slowly drop off. Now all of that is based off those guages.

    Now i dont know if that is where im supposed to be, but thats where it seems the stove runs good, produces some good heat, burns the longest, and constant. I feel alot better about the way im burning this year than last year. And i dont have a problem with the burn times cause we only burn for a max of 6 hrs in the evenings, and 12 hours a day on the weekends. This is due to the stove being on a finished porch that is connected to the house through our main doorway which is where our dead bolt locks are, so i cant leave that door open all night cause the outside door to get on the porch is just a storm door. So those burn times are good enough for me.

    Now last year we burned from Oct 1st through basically the end of April and used about 3 cords. Now i dont care if i would go through 6 cords because what i pay for a cord of slab wood that i use greatly out-weighs the price of oil. I can burn all i want all winter for under $100 in wood. So even if i doubled that i would still be saving a boat load of money.
  12. lanternman

    lanternman New Member

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    i am. all 3 of my stoves are non epa!
  13. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    Danno, that is where i got my stove from, Northern Tool. Now i dont know if many people have ordered stoves from there, but it ended up being a extremely easy process from online order to setting the stove in place.
  14. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    It really looks as if you are doing what I would be doing for burning. Those temps you are giving sound appropriate. I don't know what overfire is for your stove, but I would guess that keeping it under 650-700 would be best. If it gets over 750 then you should start doing something to reduce temps.

    Out of curiosity, what are the dimensions are your firebox? (I guess I could look at the firebricks in the manual)
  15. lanternman

    lanternman New Member

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    mine will go about 2hrs if you load it down and shut the air control and the damper almost shut. gets really hot though. mines a chinese vogelzang knockoff that has an eagle on the door. really heavy cast iron.
  16. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    Never mind on firebox size:

    That's bigger than my old 12. Crazy that you can't get longer burn times out of it. They even only claim 1-2 hours...
  17. bluedogz

    bluedogz Minister of Fire

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    Non-EPA Sierra here... just a big steel box with a door.

    Wintertime wood usage is still unclear for me because this is my first year burning properly dry wood, so I'm using somewhat less. So far, it seems a full load will burn 3+ hours, although I've managed to eke out some overnight burns.
  18. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    Ya, i bought this going in blind, i had no idea what a EPA vs non EPA was except for the tax credit. What i was looking for was price and price compared to burn times. The only burning i did prior was at my father-in-laws camp and that burner is just a huge box with a hole in the top for the chimney. Im not complaining about my stove, it more than paid for itself last year (firrst year burngin) with the saving over oil, and this year its paying for the new windows in my house, so it wasnt a bad decision, and it makes the winters all that much more bearable. Now in the future i might see if i can sell off this stove for a couple hundred and buy a more efficient one and install a real door on the porch with real locks and leave the door open to the house from the porch all night and burn that sucker, then i would be saving even more.

    Ive seen my temps spike a few times up around 700-750* but it doesnt stay long, and im sure i was up over that a couple times last year because even when it got up to 700-750 this year i couldnt smell it, but last year i could when it would get hot.

    But one thing ive always wondered about was the BTU's on these things, mine is 110,000, but alot of the EPA ones are much less. Would i be sacrificing warmth for effeciency? Or how does that work. Some stove say they will heat 1200-1500 square feet but are much less BTUs than mine.

    And just a note, this is also my first winter burning properly dried wood, last year the wood at the least was seasoned for 5 months.
  19. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    Yes and no on the warmth vs efficiency question. Here's the most simplified version
    1. An EPA stove will turn more of the fuel into heat, that's a good thing.

    2. A stove with longer burn times and lower BTUs may heat as well, but if it does it's because of the lack of swing in temps.

    If your reload is every two hours you will have wild swings in temps in the room, I'm sure you've been someplace where the room felt fine all day at 72, then you came home and it was 70 and that felt really really cold. If your stove warms your room to 75 then drops down to 68 by the end of the burn cycle you will feel colder more often than with a stove that keeps it at 70 for three times as long. Make sense?
  20. Agent

    Agent Member

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    If you're talking about burning sawmill cutoff slabwood, then I can easily see having only 2 hour burntimes. That's right about the same I get when burning pallet pieces during shoulder season burns. Those little pieces like to burn HOT and fast if you're not careful. I've accidently let my temps spike to 850F+ a few times that way.
    And you're right about the savings! For under $300, I got 6 cords of pine (2x what I used last year), and that includes a 140 mile round trip drive to get each load!
    Sure, we have to fidget and fuss with our stoves a little more, but I can stand being slightly inconvienced in order to save a thousand+ dollars on a newer stove.
    Now that I think about it, my Big Buck isn't even UL listed, let alone EPA certified :)
  21. xjcamaro89

    xjcamaro89 Member

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    The slab wood i buy is sawmill cuttoff, but its not your usual junk, i dont know what this guy does that his slab wood is so thick, but i pick through and grab only the thick stuff, and most of the time i dont even have to pick through it, its all good and thick. Alot of the slab wood i have is at last 3" thick, and some of it i had to split!, so its not your usual slab wood where there is more bark than wood. And i have 6 cords of this stuff, enough to get me through 2 winters. I get it for $15 a truck load, and he is within 10 miles of my house. That equals about two truck loads/cord.

    My stove saved me over $1000 in oil last year, and probably more this year. I got filled with oil last year at christmas time, i have a 275 gallon tank, i still have 100 gallons left.

    The really sad thing is, i work for the oil company! lol
    Realstone likes this.
  22. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    I rather like having a separate forum for 'classic stoves,' thankyouverymuch!
  23. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    This ain't a classic. Should be moved to the hearth where there is more traffic.
  24. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I feel the same way. If you hadn't PMed me about the thread you posted in Picture Perfect I would have never seen it.
  25. agartner

    agartner Feeling the Heat

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    Pre epa kent sherwood, and i love it. For its time, in the mid 80s, it was an advanced design, kind of a precursor to the current flock of hi efficiency stoves out there now. And im ok with the separate thread for classics.

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