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Biomass, NextGen and Eko all the same?

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by Paul Whipple, Jul 14, 2013.

  1. Paul Whipple

    Paul Whipple New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Messages:
    15
    I'm doing a bunch of research and it seems like the NextGen is a re-labled Eko. Can someone set me straight on this? Also the sticky about Biomass boilers, is that the same as a NextGen boiler?

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  2. Tennman

    Tennman Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2009
    Messages:
    625
    Loc:
    Southern Tenn
    Absolutely not, but I can understand how you'd be confused. The "BioMass NextGen" is a totally separate product line strangely developed and marketed by New Horizons along with the EKO product line. Five years ago, when the BioMass was relatively new to the market, I pulled a trailer up the New Horizons with the intent of bringing home an EKO 60 based on the experience of the large satisfied customer base here on this forum. My mind was made up. I arrived at NH and Zenon took me around his warehouse and pointed out all the design features of about 4 or 5 product lines that offered 60 Class boilers. The choice for me came down to the EKO or the BioMass. So I was faced with the hard decision between buying the proven EKO with about 30 years of service history or the new, low-cost kid on the block with design features common on more modern designs; upper chamber design/shape, two fans pressurization and draft, cast/shaped lower chamber ceramics, same controller as EKO, smaller flue exit.... and other features. Tough choice... an aged but proven performer with a large user base (EKO) or relatively new product without any extended history for longevity or reliability but clear design improvements (BioMass). Took a chance and very glad I did. I've said it before here many times. If I was purchasing a replacement boiler today, I'd step up and spend probably an additional $4-5K to get one of the high end Frolings or equivalent. Back five years ago I didn't know if my wife and I could live with the challenges heating with wood. Now that I know we can and enjoy heating with wood I'd be more inclined to explore pricier options. But if I had to purchase the most cost effective gasification boiler again I'd buy another BioMass. I can't express strongly enough how that small window in the lower door helped me in the early years and still provides 90% of my knowledge into the health of the burn. Read the BioMass user sticky which I started as a singular user site equivalent to what the EKO users have. You'll see lots of BioMass users eventually overcoming their learning curve to become satisfied users.... just like the satisfied users on the EKO sticky. And BTW, it was EKO users that got me out of the ditch ~5 years ago with their boiler experience so I'm definitely not trashing the successful and proven EKO. I fully expected EKO to come out with an updated design within the last few years to preserve their market share. Not sure why that hasn't happened with such a strong market heritage and history.... In any product based business... you snooze you lose. Bottomline, I'm very pleased I took a chance on the BioMass and am a happy user.
    taxidermist and mikefrommaine like this.
  3. I'm another happy Biomass 60 owner. I wanted a simple, reliable and efficient design. And since it uses a 6" flue the install cost was cheaper since I was adding a 30' class A chimney.

    Another big plus for me was the depth of the fire box. It can take a 24"+ stick of wood easily. Lot less cutting and splitting :)


    No matter what boiler you buy storage will make it better.
    BoilerMan likes this.
  4. Paul Whipple

    Paul Whipple New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Messages:
    15
    Tennman and Mike, thanks guys for taking the time to inform me. Sounds like I'm in a similar situation, I think at this point its a choice between the Eko and the Biomass. I'm definitely going the storage route and was working on my the first of 2, 500 gallon propane tank today. Next step is to fill it full of water and get my welder buddy to put a threaded flexolet on it. Thanks again.
  5. Tennman

    Tennman Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2009
    Messages:
    625
    Loc:
    Southern Tenn
    I'm also adding storage at this moment. We could be learning how to tune and run our Biomass's for storage at the same time. I intend to suck Mike's brain dry when I get to that point. He's one of the guys here that's been running storage with his BioMass probably from when he first got it. If you go EKO you'll have even more people here to help you to tune your boiler. 'Course I don't fire up typically until around Thanksgiving... so I may be sucking your brain dry also. Enjoy the process. You've found the right place with a great group of guys.
  6. I went one season without storage, fell in love with the boiler all over again when I added storage!

    There were a couple minor tweaks to the controller once I added storage. Nothing major. The only down side of the biomass (and eko) is that the controller will not shut off the fans off at the end of the burn if boiler never went into idle during the burn.. Couple easy ways to deal with that though.

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