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  1. StackedLumber

    StackedLumber New Member

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    Oct 28, 2009
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    Loc:
    Michigan

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  2. juddspaintballs

    juddspaintballs Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    Messages:
    149
    I don't know. Seems like spalling might be a problem or cracking over time. If it doesn't sit level or care isn't taken putting it into place, the whole thing could crack and be ruined. I suppose it could work, but I think the masonry skills would have to be top notch to prevent a disaster. Then you'd have one very heavy paper weight.
  3. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    Messages:
    2,296
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    NASA may be interested in this guy if he's invented a new concrete unaffected by heat:

    "Heiss Heaters are made from a break through masonry material that is not affected by high heat or corrosion, there is a special tempering process also."

    I'd be leary, personally. Ask for references and ask how many units are installed. Ask to see one that's been running 10 years.
  4. StackedLumber

    StackedLumber New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2009
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Michigan
    I'm not in need of or interested in buying this boiler . . . . . I guess I have to give the guy some credit for trying and thinking outside the box. I'm just not convinced it would work, and wanted other's opinions on it.
  5. juddspaintballs

    juddspaintballs Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    Messages:
    149
    Well, for firefighting training buildings, they use concrete or fire brick for regular plain old class A combustible fires that are vented. When we actually train in a flashover simulator (where the temperature reaches around 1200* F), the structure is made from steel. 1200* F is more like the temperature a boiler would hit, especially the gassifiers since that is basically forced flashover in a controlled firebox. Like Stee said, if NASA doesn't have a special concrete and the guys paid to design burn structures don't have it, I doubt a guy in his garage has it.
  6. Birdman

    Birdman New Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    278
    Loc:
    NH
    hhhhmmm thinking outside the box....this picture makes me think about forest fires. Maybe when one of those big suckers gets started out west... we can harness the heat somehow and use it? That's what this picture makes me think of.
  7. HVAC tech

    HVAC tech New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    I bought one of these, it is one third the cost of even the least expensive steel outside unit. I found several minor issues with it. But then when the price is this low I just bought good quality controls. The price was still over two thousand dollars less than the lowest steel unit. All wood stoves smoke and I live in a very rural part of the country so that is not an issue. Almost everyone here heats with wood. Yes the unit has minute cracks but none that leak air or water. I built a small shed around the unit and store about a weeks worth of wood inside with the bulk just outside. I find it holds the water temp at 130 F over a fourteen hour span with outside temps of 20 F. I heat a two story home 65 by 24 at 70 F to 75 F. I find 130 F works well for me with less wood required.
  8. Gary_602z

    Gary_602z Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
    Messages:
    930
    Loc:
    Lake Odessa,MI
    "ceramic effect"? and cleaning ash out once a month? :roll:

    Gary
  9. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    It seems to have some similarities to the more traditional RMND units here (Seton|GW|GF|Adobe). While it may be easier to MOVE heat with water, I can say from personal experiance that the mass of my unit definitly STOREs heat. When firing up from cold I am always amazed at how much wood it will eat, taking the refractory from say 45 °F to ??? °F . When the fuel supply is exhausted the heat remains in the mass. It would be nice if there were a good way to get that into the water though at that point.

    As far as how often to clean out ash . . . I guess I though most of the Euro-style downdrafts had the ash drop down into an ash collection system of some sort. For that matter, some RMND units - I believe Seton and GF- have grates and ash pans. Again, from personal experiance with the GW, if loaded appropriatly, I can go a month between major ash removal. Overloading and/or use of wet wood will speed up the need to remove ash.

    But having said all that . . . I think my greatest concern would be what happens when the concrete cracks and there is no 'frame' to hold the boiler together.

    Oh, and I think salesmen should have to disclose their status here :sick:
  10. HVAC tech

    HVAC tech New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    As I don't sell these units, I feel it is better to hear from someone who has bought one and actually has used it, as opposed to a lot of guessing by those that haven't.
  11. tom in maine

    tom in maine Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2008
    Messages:
    717
    Loc:
    Searsport, Maine
    We have done a LOT of testing on the energy that refractory heating eats up.
    Simple thought: the more massive the unit is, the longer it takes to get up to temperature and the longer
    it takes to cool down.
    If you cannot use this energy, like having that refractory heat pass into a living space when the unit is not being fired, then all the energy that
    heats up 2000# of refractory is going to be wasted to some degree.
    The units we did were tiny compared to Setons, etc. and the impact on total efficiency was very significant like 15-35%.

    Once again, if the unit is inside and the draft is off when the unit is not firing, that heat might be usable.
    If it is outdoors, and cannot be shuttled into indoors storage, it is lost.
  12. bigburner

    bigburner Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2010
    Messages:
    438
    I think refractory is the holy grail of gasification, it makes everything better. At least at my house. 15,000 lbs of it
  13. tom in maine

    tom in maine Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2008
    Messages:
    717
    Loc:
    Searsport, Maine
    It is important to have refractory, it is just a matter of how it is used.
  14. kabbott

    kabbott Member

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2007
    Messages:
    384
    Loc:
    Hampstead,Maryland
    :gulp:
    I have "only" 14,000 lbs of water... How big is your house?... what is the boiler output? Sounds like that thing would heat a school.
    I am firmly in the "less is more" camp, my boiler only weighs ~650 lbs. The water is for storage, not the boiler. Heats up FAST, Cools down fast. very little
    heat wasted up the stack when not burning.
  15. man016

    man016 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Heissheater claims not affected by high heat, not true. If it were true they wouldnt crackup like they do, I know first hand. Im looking for feedback.
  16. HVAC tech

    HVAC tech New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    I also have a Hiess. What cracked on it? Does it leak water? The only problems I've had in the structure is the door gasket.
  17. jimbom

    jimbom Combustion Analyzer

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Messages:
    1,022
    Loc:
    Missouri Ozarks
    Hiess offers "many references on request." I would go that route and then evaluate the quality of the references. That would translate in my mind to the quality of the man and the product. When I think of all the refractory we used in foundry, heat treating and forge operations I am angry we didn't use concrete. It would have been much cheaper.
  18. man016

    man016 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    The door is cracked on all four corners and the cracks extend around and down both sides. Where the cracks are the morter has separated and shifted with some pieces falling off, plus I have also noticed the inside fire box is cracked in two places which continue length wise, they look to be all the way around. The door (as I see it) is set to tite in the opening and leaves no room for the expantion of the metal door frame. I sent Heiss pictures of the problems I have accured with the unit and they blew it off as "normal". I also have observed some fire box flaking. The unit is only 3 months old, not at all happy with the workmanship or business practices of Heiss Heater.
  19. Como

    Como Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    Messages:
    866
    Loc:
    Colorado
    I do not think it is a workmanship issue, more a function of the design/materials used.

    So it may well be normal, whether it is acceptable is another issue.

    If it last a few years and has paid for itself then that is probably all you could expect.
  20. HVAC tech

    HVAC tech New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    I have several years experience's with all types of boilers, I may be able to help. I just need a little background. Is your unit exposed to the elements? You mention four cracks around the door. Are they cosmetic or do they leak air or water? Does the door still seal? Leaks through to the interior are noticeable when the unit is fully fired, you shut down the damper and smoke seeps through the cracks or the door seal. Through cracks will allow excess oxygen to enter the interior and over fire the unit at times as well. You mention mortar. Do you mean the original concrete structure or have repairs been attempted already? What water temperature do you maintain? Do you use a lot of wood to maintain this water temperature? Does it take a lot make up water? Do you use any boiler water treatment? I have had good luck with my unit but I'm aware others may not have been so fortunate and would like to help them with what may be a problem for me in the future.
  21. HVAC tech

    HVAC tech New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    I have worked in a few foundries and would recommend an industrial grade refractory for these units to last long term with low maintenance and few necessary repairs. But as you mentioned it does cost a lot more. There is also no reason that when I do need to repair the structure that I can't use a quality industrial refractory or even low cost furnace and retort cement.
  22. bpirger

    bpirger Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    May 23, 2010
    Messages:
    606
    Loc:
    Ithaca NY Area
    I couldn't find any detailed info on the use of the concrete in these...maybe I'm blind. Don't many of the modern boilers use a refractory concrete mix of some kind? I know the outdoor EconoBurns do. That was my concern with it....when the refractory cemet all fell apart, how do you replace? Maybe it never will....I don't know.

    As for NASA, unless the stuff is really light, it isn't of too much use. :)
  23. man016

    man016 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Como,
    The workmanship is in the infrastructure of the unit (how well is the re-bar and wire mesh tied together) also the exterior components configuration have allot to be desired.

    HVAC tech
    My 28 plus years in the construction field working with people from Honeywell to NASA besides various government instulations,Thank anyway,read my threads in hearth.com (anyone heard of heissheaters forums) this is a simple minded system.

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