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BioBricks in Massachusetts, South Shore area

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Cath, Oct 19, 2007.

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  1. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    For those of you on the South Shore you now have a couple of places to go for BioBricks:
    South Shore Wood Pellets - Holbrook, MA -- $245.00 per pallet
    Eastern Ice, Brockton, MA -- $250.00 per pallet

    We picked up a couple of 20 brick sample packs at South Shore Wood Pellets, but haven't had a chance to try them yet.

    We dealt with one of the owners, Ken. This is the first year he bought them. Apparently “BioPellet” (BR Thomas) contacted him after I asked if there were any retailers South of Boston.

    He bought one trailer load but didn’t get it until after his “ValPak” advertising went out. Although he has had some minor interest he questions whether he’ll be able to sell the entire trailer load at the price he feels he has to charge. He said he would like to be able to sell it for less than cordwood, which is probably why he’s charging $245.00 rather than the $250.00 you typically see. He was told he was getting the “Summer” price but that later orders would be more. I hope that doesn’t mean he would have to charge more.

    If anyone in the area wants to give them a try the 20 brick packs are $5.50. If I remember correctly a pallet contains 50 of the 20 brick packs. At $245.00 per pallet each pack would be $4.90. So $5.50 seems like a reasonable amount to give them a try. I didn’t think to ask how much delivery would be since we have a truck and would probably just pick them up ourselves.

    We had a fire yesterday morning to take the chill off. If it’s cool tomorrow morning perhaps we’ll try some BioBricks.

    Interestingly, Ken says that both pellets and BioBricks are used all year round. Apparently the pellets are used for animal bedding. And he says the BioBricks work really well in chimneas.

    I suggested that he might want to join us on the boards so he can see what members are saying about BioBricks, and pellets for that matter.
    ~Cath

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  2. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Cath things are working out well? I will be getting the insert offset flue adapter but it may take a couple of weeks. I have not forgotten you. I still think you got a great deal on that insert
  3. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    Elk,
    We've only had one fire since the initial test fire. Craig ran it yesterday morning to take the chill off. He seemed pleasantly surprised at how well the blower works; and even on high the blower isn't overly loud.

    He did use a fan in the dining room to try and move the air through the circular first floor layout and up the stairs. I think the outside temps were in the 60s. The livingroom thermostat was set for 72 or so, the actual temp was about 80, and the upstairs temp was 71.

    According to Craig the difference in temp between the downstairs and upstairs when the furnace is running is usually about 10 degrees so I think we're doing ok.

    If it's chilly tomorrow we'll probably try the BioBricks.

    Thanks for asking. Please keep me posted on the offset box.
    ~Cath
  4. Stevebass4

    Stevebass4 Minister of Fire

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    wow that's a great price for the bundled package as i paid around 8.00 each last year - i might just take a drive down to pick up more
  5. senorFrog

    senorFrog New Member

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    Thanks for the info cath. These guys advertise $239/pallet plus delivery: http://www.pelletsdirect.com/pricing.htm

    It would be so much easier to have a pallet of these delivered and moved into the garage vs a cord of wood dumped on the driveway, then stack, stack, stack. Plus there is are no worries if it's dry or not.
  6. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Cath still have that 1800 number for Vc kicking around please PM me with it or post it there are a few VC posters that could use that info
  7. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    Stevebass4 & SenorFrog,
    My working assumption is that South Shore Wood Pellet's price will be competitive even if it's shipped since Ken also owns a trucking company, of course that may depend upon how local he is to you.

    For what it's worth, I was struck by what seemed to be his genuine desire to make his profit on volume, rather than with the gouging you hear about with prices in the $300.00 per pallet range.
    As I mentioned before, he would like to keep his prices below that of cord wood. But BioBricks offer more than just convenience; they offer consistency which makes shopping on price more reliable, not just on the amount of wood but on the moisture content. When is the last time someone had an overage --as opposed to a shortage-- on seasoned cord wood they bought?

    If the heat output of a pallet of BioBricks is roughly the same as that of seasoned cord wood then I would just as soon use BioBricks as long as they are roughly the same in price. Although we still haven't burned any BioBricks so the jury is still out on burn time and intensity of heat. Assuming the heat value is comparable then the convenience features (e.g.: cleaner, bug free, takes up less space, easier to stack) would be a bonus.

    Of course, I am hoping we can scrounge as much wood as possible to subsidize the cost of whatever we may buy.

    One more consideration, I do have allergies and they have been acting up more this year for some reason. I'm not sure, but the fire we started the other day may have aggravated it a little. Craig thinks it may be the dry heat but if it's the wood I wonder if the BioBricks are less likely to trigger an asthma attack. My guess is that could vary with the type of wood used in the BioBricks. Craig noticed that one package smelled more of cedar than the others.

    Does anyone else have any thoughts on compressed wood fuel and allergies?
    ~Cath
  8. babalu87

    babalu87 New Member

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    Cath , thanks for the info.
    I wonder if Brockton Ice would sell a bag for $5.50? I did know about the place in Holbrook though.
  9. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    Babalu87,
    I know that Eastern Ice in Brockton would sell them for $5.50. In fact I almost went there because the website for South Shore Wood Pellets indicated you needed to buy a minimum of 10 sample packs. Fortunately I called them after speaking with Eastern Ice because they couldn't tell me how many bricks were in a pack. I think he said 10 or 12, as opposed to the 20 there should be, unless retailers can get smaller sample packs.

    Either way I'm glad I called South Shore Wood Pellets because either there are more in their sample packs for the same price or they are more familiar with the product. I hope for his sake he corrects their website to reflect that you can buy a single pack for $5.50.
    ~Cath
  10. senorFrog

    senorFrog New Member

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    I called Eastern re BioBricks and they answered right away nd seemed okay. I could get a pallet in the truck okay on their end. Just not sure how I'd get it out on my end.
  11. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    Senor Frog,
    A brick 20 pack is 38 Lbs. A pallet has 50 packages of 20 bricks. So the question is how hard it would be to move 38 Lbs 50 times. The good news is they are fairly compact so the weight is manageable. Each package is about 6" by 10" by 18".

    I don't think of myself as being very strong but I could probably unload a pallet from a truck as long as I paced myself. But then again, I've been chasing toddlers and carrying them up and down the stairs for awhile now.

    Regarding the size of Eastern's sample packs. I do notice that some Ebay retailers are selling them in 10 and 12 brick packages so if that's the size Eastern is selling you could be paying about twice as much to give them a try. It may be worth a trip to Holbrook if you're planning on buying more than a couple of sample packs.

    If you wind up having them delivered I would suggest you contact South Shore Wood Pellets to see if they deliver (I can't imagine that they don't) and if so how much it would cost.

    Also, DH suggests asking for an extra pallet to stack them onto.

    ~Cath
  12. senorFrog

    senorFrog New Member

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    Thanks cath. Makes sense. I was thinking of unloading the entire pallet w/ramps or something. Your way sounds much easier and less chance of breaking my foot or something.

    Wood stoves are a lot of work. :)
  13. CSM-StovesandFurnaces

    CSM-StovesandFurnaces New Member

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    Loc:
    Monson, MA

    CSM Stoves and Furnaces in Monson, MA sells BioBricks for 4.95 a bag (20 bricks) or 225.00 for a pallet (50 bags).
    We are located on Main Street Monson. (413) 267 4334 is the phone number to the store.
  14. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    Where is Monson?
    ~Cath
  15. GVA

    GVA Minister of Fire

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    Never heard of it........ :cheese: j/k

    it's next to Palmer, MA
    Not quite near you, though....
  16. Mike Wilson

    Mike Wilson New Member

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  17. iceman

    iceman Minister of Fire

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    i am gonna have to check them out its 20 minutes from here!!
  18. FiremanBob

    FiremanBob New Member

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    I was quoted $259/pallet by Negus Lumber in Swansea. Delivery to my house (only 5 miles away) would be $10. I can see the advantages of them (consistent, drier, cleaner, easier to handle) and would pay if the premium were just a little lower. My last cord (mostly maple, honest cord but not the best quality) was $185.
  19. CSM-StovesandFurnaces

    CSM-StovesandFurnaces New Member

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    Monson is between Palmer, MA and Stafford CT. Follow route 32 from palmer, into monson. (main street is rt. 32)
  20. Cath

    Cath Feeling the Heat

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    CSM,
    Your closer proximity to the manufacturer probably explains the lower prices. I am slightly south of Boston. Unless you deliver and the cost of delivery is relatively inexpensive then we are better off picking them up at South Shore Wood Pellets in Holbrook, MA. Aside from the cost of gas that would be a long drive for us.
    ~Cath
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