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Blaze King, not my option

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by jrprusak, Nov 17, 2010.

  1. wildlandfirefighterswife

    wildlandfirefighterswife Member

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    Maybe that was not the only stove ever installed on that pipe?

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  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    The big hole in the logic is that there is only about 85 cubic feet of wood in a cord. Air space doesn't burn worth a damn.
  3. HotCoals

    HotCoals Minister of Fire

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    Yep..I didn't know about it till I found it in the manual.
    You think its shut all the way but it's not if you don't give it that extra pull.
  4. daleeper

    daleeper Minister of Fire

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    Neither does a single solid block of wood the size of the firebox. And tough to load, especially a King sized one.
  5. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I used Chimneysweep's # for BTU's available per cord and he accounts for this:

    "Weight and Heat content figures are based on seasoned wood at 20% moisture content, and 85 cu ft of wood per cord. A cord of wood is defined as a stack 4 feet high, 4 feet deep and 8 feet long, which comes to 128 cu ft, but we deduct for air space between the pieces in the stack."

    I then used the real world firebox volume, 3.75 cu ft, as opposed to the published 4.3. This is how much of your wood pile you can reasonably replicate in the firebox as opposed to how much air Autocad told the designer is in there.
  6. Treacherous

    Treacherous Minister of Fire

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    I'm always impressed with the discussion of these BKs with their fine tuned controls and long burn times.
  7. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    Same here.

    However just as the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence I'm sure the stove is always warmer... I dunno, somewhere :)
  8. Treacherous

    Treacherous Minister of Fire

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    I have no buyers remorse with my stove. It more than gets the job done in my small 800 square foot cabin. I am usually there only on the weekends so extra long burn times aren't as important to me. I usually need blazing heat anyway. When I go over after Thanksgiving I may be lucky to be heating it up from the high 20's. I drain all water between visits so no issues with frozen pipes.



  9. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    In a basement where you don't have to look at that ugly stove, NOTHING beats the heating utility of the blaze king king. Huge firebox, cat for low burns (if desired), longest burn times of any stove, automatic thermostat, etc. The BK is superior in all aspects of basement heating. The low flue temps are all the evidence of magic you need since that cold flue means more heat is staying at the stove, my non-cat stove has a flue temp of 800 right now wasting heat up the flue.

    Running a cat stove will always be more complicated than a non-cat. That said, you don't have to fiddle with it as much as a modern non-cat so you will overall be paying less attention to the BK and since it is in your basement, the set-and-forget nature of the BK with stat is superior.

    One more option, have you considered a wood furnace? If Crappie Keith was still around he would be pushing a yukon furnace. Non-cat but longish burn times and high reliability so long as you have electricity.
  10. jrprusak

    jrprusak New Member

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    Correct, for me looks is not a consideration for a stove replacement, but maintenance and amount of wood is…

    In the Interior of Alaska our choice of firewood is not the best, birch, (23,600 BTU/cord), and white, (18,100 BTU/cord). Due to short growing season and cooler temps the density is low. The average size birch logs vary from 4”-10” on my property and after splitting once or twice what goes in the stove is even smaller… Spruce does get much bigger, but I have to go off my property to get it.

    You guys with them pictures of big chucks of split oak and elm make me jealous.

    I will admit I think my wood my have more moisture than fully seasoned, (I do not burn totally green). Summer here is so darn short, not much time to dry.. I am not the kind that gets a few years ahead either..

    I am going to get a moisture meter and start to checking what I am burning before I commit to the BB King to make sure the cat will operate during full burn without a lot of maintenance and expense..

    Are there preferred moisture meters out there??

    Any Alaskans out there with some experience on using a Cat stove? I would like to here what you have to say….

    I’ll check back later, I got to get back to snow plowing, temps here went from -25* last week to +30 today and they are talking rain on top of the 15” of snow we have… bad mix…
  11. ecocavalier02

    ecocavalier02 Minister of Fire

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    THeres a few guys from alaska on here using the blaze king. bogydave i know is one of them. i believe he burns almost all birch. you'd definatnly want get at least a couple years head especially if u got the wood right on ur property. makes life easier. that birch would still dry out pretty fast i think even in winter the dry wind helps not like summer but it does dry out some.
  12. Renovation

    Renovation New Member

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    Yes, I was going to make the same comment as Solar--I think the calculation is correct for it compares apples to apples--there are air spaces between the wood in the cord volume and the firebox volume. Thanks for a great conversation.
  13. Renovation

    Renovation New Member

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    Look up Blaze King in the Reviews section. Many of the reviews are from enthusiastic Alaskans, and that stoked my interest (pun intended). I figured if it works for Alaskans, that's a good sign.
  14. jrprusak

    jrprusak New Member

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    Easier said than done, every year I get older it's hard enough to put up 5 cords, hee hee... And I given up on the day natural gas will be at my house, even though we have the biggest untapped reserves up north, (I do not even want to go there).

    I will say in the Interior Alaska low humidity, (like sometimes zero), does dry wood faster and due to small diameter logs a small electric wood splitter is easy to split down to 4 pieces so it dries faster. Especially since this job is the wife’s job. She is a well trained stacker also. I just need to get it fallen, cut to length and put in a pile within the length of my extension cords.

    Moisture testing may shed some light on this too….
  15. Work Less Play More

    Work Less Play More New Member

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    the bk needs dry wood otherwise its not worth the money
  16. Renovation

    Renovation New Member

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    Yep, BK says right in their intro video that green wood clogs up the stove and cat. That is something to consider when choosing a stove. Might thermal (non-cat) secondary burners be more tolerant of green wood?
  17. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    Non cats do not like it either!
  18. Work Less Play More

    Work Less Play More New Member

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    As much as some people say their stoves can't burn seasoned or kiln dried wood... any moisture content in firewood just limits it's heat output. In many cases, it's better to sell the firewood for $60 a facecord and buy fuel oil with the cash. You can then leave for the weekend, come home, and not have frost on your tupperware.
  19. Akmechanic

    Akmechanic New Member

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    John,
    Here's a testimonial for ya from the local area. My 1200 square foot house is so poorly insulated that I sued the guy that built it. It has a Laser 73 toyostove and at 0* the house wouldn't get above 60 and the toyo was on High all winter burning 8+ gallons of fuel everyday. Out of necessity I started shopping for woodstoves and found Blaze King to be the most efficient that was available at our very popular wood stove dealer down on college road. Lol. About 4 grand for the princess stove, flu, and install. I've had it since july 2008 and have never owned or operated a woodstove prior.
    My heating oil usage is now less than half, I burn 4 cords a year starting in September each fall. My burn times are anywhere from 3 hours when it's -40 or colder to 12 hours when it's around 0. And if I want too, and sometimes I do, I can get this drafty cabin up to 90 degrees when it's 40 below in about an hour. I follow the manual to a T since I'm an aircraft mechanic and that's the only way i know how to do things lol, and I had my chimney cleaned for the first time this fall. The sweeps said keep operating the stove they way I was because it was one of the cleanest flus they had seen lately.
    This year I'm burning almost exclusively birch and it's seasoned for 1 year. I have absolutely nothing to compare it to, but all my research before and talking to others around here after I bought it has only reinforced how great I feel about it.
    There ya go, a local testimonial and I'm not even attempting to bash other stoves, cuz I don't know no better. :)
    -Kevin
  20. Akmechanic

    Akmechanic New Member

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    I misspoke er um mistyped. I was burning almost 300 gallons a month that first winter. Now I'm burning 600 a year between november and April so about 100 a month. Quite the savings. Once I get this place reinsulated I suspect I will only use oil when I leave for vacations. :)

    -Kevin.
  21. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Another guy drinkin the Kool-Aid. Welcome to the forum Kevin.
  22. jrprusak

    jrprusak New Member

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    Sounds like you have a good match with the BK. My guess is with a poorly insulated house you are running the stove at maximum capacity which is great for the combustor. I on the other hand live in a very tight super insulated house and do not need to run my stove full throttle.

    After talking to other BK owners and others with Cat-combustors I decided to go the non-Cat route with a PE Summit. Even several dealers on the outside said they have stopped carrying all Cat stoves due to the large volume of call backs.

    Last week, I helped a friend haul his Cat stove out into the snow bank which he replaced with a PE also. He burns 3-4 year old seasoned wood.
  23. Mcbride

    Mcbride New Member

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    As the owner of a blaze king, king model in my first home with wood heat, i installed the same model in my next home when I moved.
    My reasons for getting another blaze king were simple. Its easy to use, works very well, and can idle down all day if warm out, or crank out a lot iof heat when temps drop to -35 and keep the house nicely warm, and my electric heat set to about 60F never comes on to supplement, even on those -35 days, as the house is still 73 F where i like it, or more.
    have had to open a window or door briefly to cool the place to a comfortable level when i forgot to set the damper lower at -35.

    whomever told you the blaze king is a high maintenance, difficult to use wood heater has likely never owned one themselves.
    After a combined 12 years of ownership of a king model, in my opinion they are nothing less than GREAT!
  24. Akmechanic

    Akmechanic New Member

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    Glad you found a stove that's meeting your needs John!

    To clarify some points for others that though: Actually I run it at half or less, most of the time. When it's -40 it may be slighty more than half but right now it's 0 and it'll be at 1 for most of the day. If I leave it on full (like I fall asleep right after stoking it which was more of a problem before I quit drinking lol), it'll burn out fairly quickly, say in less than a couple hours. In accordance with the operation manual, I do run it on full when I first stoke it to get the cat active - takes about 10-15 minutes. Not sure about the kool-aid comment. I know quite a bit about combustion, though not in a wood stove as well as catalyst burner technology and frankly, it makes quite a lot of sense to me in this application as well. I read one post on here where someone likened it to a baffle slowing down the escaping exhaust gases. That's not the intended function of the cat as it doesn't merely allow more time for the gasses to cool off in the stove. It's actually reburning the exhaust gasses to 1, reduce the unburnt particulate matter in the smoke and 2, in the process extracts more heat out of it, thus getting more of the available BTUs into the house as opposed to out of the chimney. If you don't trust that synopsis or any of the several websites quoted in above posts, drive your car or truck that has a catalytic converter on it for 15 minutes and lay your hand on the cat. Ask yourself why it's so dang hot. It's because it's also reburning the exhaust gases to lower unburnt fuel. In that application though, the heat is wasted. In our cat stoves, it's used to heat the house.

    My girlfriend and I were talking about this last night and little did I know, she's had a different model woodstove in every house she's ever lived in her whole life and says this blaze king is the easiest to operate she's ever seen after a short learning curve, has burn times she thought were impossible and is the easiest to build a fire in.

    Now let me say this - the Internet gave everyone an equal voice. Even the ignorant and angry. I'm neither but I really hate these typical forum arguments where someone gets their panties in a bunch because of a difference in experiences or opinion. I haven't heard of any call backs or anyone ever having an issue with a blaze king in the local area. If someone else has, I get that and I'm not saying they're full of it: they just have a different experience than me. I'm happy with my stove and shared that for others trying to make the best decision for themselves. Whats right for me may not be right for everyone. And what's right for others may not be right for me. I appreciate others sharing their different experiences but you all ought not do it in a way to put down others. I kinda sound like my grandmother but it needs said.
    If someone doesn't understand or agree with the science of combustion, fine. If people on this forum start insulting me for my experience and opinion (and the kool-aid comment is used to indicate blind following and ignorance (ref: Jonestown) which I see as an insult and don't take too lightly), I'll merely leave.
    And btw, lower 48ers, part of the reason I live in Fairbanks, is because you can still get you butt kicked for calling someone a liar when they're not. I read in previous posts ateast the implication that someone wasn't being honest. The internet also gave anonymity to those who feel they need it so consequences are hard to come by on here.

    Let's keep focused on honesty and mutual respect and post accordingly.
  25. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    No insult intended, that was from one BK burner to another. A lot of folks around here think we belong to a cult.

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