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Does this make sense for kindling woodstoves?

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Alan Harris, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    I have special storage spot in the camper for a stack of SC's..

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  2. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    Interestingly, NO one has been rude or smart mouthed to you. Maybe you should rethink your membership here if people simply answering a question sets you off.
  3. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Yes, you are correct. We've had a number of positive responses to FiAir from catalogues, as well as the casual BBQ, firepit and grilling communities. You guys really know your stuff. Thank you.
  4. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Yikes. I really didn't mean to sound smart mouthed at all...just a lame attempt at humor. We've had other feedback, such as using a garbage can lid to fan charcoal grill fires, and responded in a similar way. I apologize. I truly meant it to be light, and do appreciate your feedback.

    Hope we can be friends...

    Alan
  5. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Hi Thomas -- we don't have inventory yet. Hoping to ship in Spring 2013 and we will no doubt set aside several units for reviewers... thanks for the thought.

    Alan
  6. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Hey Man -- Are you a fellow Yinzer or a Pgh transplant? Either way, thank you for the offer..As I said to Thomas, we won't have inventory until Spring. Is there a way for me to get in touch with you off line?

    Alan
  7. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Hmmm -- good thought. We haven't found that to be a problem with fireplaces. FiAir's tip is tapered to pinpoint airflow and the motor is powerful enough to do the job, but not overkill. We'll need to test this out... thanks for mentioning it.

    Alan
  8. jwoair23

    jwoair23 Burning Hunk

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    Yep I am a short shot out of the city through the Squirrel Hill tunnels! I will PM you my email address, it will show up in Inbox at the upper right of the forum.
  9. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Thanks for your kind comments. We are committed to making it in America no matter what. Also I appreciate the other details. We've been looking at some wood stove videos and see what you mean. FiAir might still speed the process, but that may not be an important requirement for most users. Thanks again.

    Ala
  10. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Thanks for the comments. We're here to learn and you guys are helping us drink from a fire hose! As you say, FiAir has demonstrated its appeal to the open fire and outdoor fire crowd...wood stove users may be another story.
  11. firebroad

    firebroad Minister of Fire

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    I would have to say no. Now, if you come up with an electronic firestarter that lights fires automatically, then you might have a customer here...otherwise, I'll stick to supercedars.:)
  12. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Good to hear -- and any time or money spent is worth bringing mfg. back to America. FiAir does simplify and speed the process of kindling, that we know for sure. What do you think is a reasonable retail price for such a product? We've already set the price point, but would be interested in hearing your thoughts. Thanks.

    Alan
  13. David Tackett

    David Tackett Member

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    I am sure there is a market somewhere for your product Alan. I personally cannot think of any uses that I would have for it. I wish you the best of luck on your product. It looks very nice and well designed.
  14. KaptJaq

    KaptJaq Minister of Fire

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    Noticing all the hot embers blowing towards the hand in the video I would think that you should add some form of metal tube to the business end that can be slid back into the unit when not in use...

    What is your price point? Expensive (Brookstone catalog), Inexpensive (Target, etc.)?

    I have no need at home and would not carry the extra weight when camping.

    KaptJaq
  15. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    Outdoor use - perhaps I could see using it, but again most of the time I don't see the need. In the house I wouldn't even blow the fire for the previously mentioned issues with ash being spread about. Another factor to keep in mind for woodstove burners is that if you have a fire that is smoldering (the type that could most benefit from this sort of product) then it is likely smoking quite a bit - thus opening the door far enough to stick your hand in and use this device is likely to result in a fair amount of smoke spillage into the room. If the draft is strong enough to keep the smoke in the stove (pulling in from the open door) then likely it is strong enough to fan the fire with the door closed or cracked as well.

    You ask about what I'd be willing to pay for it - well... I suppose nothing really given my lack of a need, but if I were to give it to someone I suppose somewhere in the $15-20 range would be the high end assuming it is well made. If it is cheap/light plastic that has that "about to fall apart any minute" feel then I wouldn't pay more than $5-10.

    Basically it appears to be a DC fan in a plastic tube with a push button switch and batteries. Nicely designed perhaps, but a very simple device none the less. From a business side of things I hope that you have some (read multiple) patent protections lined up to keep others from jumping into the market if you do start having any sort of success. Being such an easy to duplicate concept I'm sure there are knock off companies out there who can get one to market in a matter of days at a very low unit cost. I appreciate "Made in America", but history shows us that the general US population has been very bad at putting their $'s behind this concept when faced with buying decisions so that alone isn't likely to ensure your success.

    Best of luck and thanks for sharing.
  16. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Okie doke...thanks for the input --

    Alan
  17. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Thanks for the input. KaptJaq. Sparks fly, of course, but they have never even caused a flinch requiring hand protection during hundreds of tests with outdoor grills and fire pits. FiAir will retail at $29.99; as for the weight, it is less than 4 oz..

    Alan
  18. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Thanks for the thoughtful response. Let me just respond to a few things you raised.
    1. You should be able to use FIAir with a wood stove door cracked just an inch or so to refresh a smoldering fire. The beauty of FiAir is that you don't have to stick your hand into the chamber. The airflow is strong enough that it should keep the smoke drafting away from the room. But we will be eager to test this.

    2. Retail price will be $29.99. I know what you mean about poorly made products. We wanted FiAir to be a quality product from a design as well as a materials standpoint. It's made of rugged ABS plastic, weighs under 4 oz. and feels comfortable but substantial in the hand. Even our prototypes have been very durable through hundreds of tests.
    3. The design looks easy to duplicate; but trust me, it was not easy to create. Our industrial designer had to throw out a lot of assumptions and revise the prototype multiple times until it performed as envisioned. Nevertheless, we do have multiple patents pending!

    Thanks again for taking time to respond,

    Alan
  19. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Thanks, Dave. Appreciate your opinion.

    Alan
  20. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Moving this discussion out of the Hearth Room and into the DIY forum, where it's a more appropriate fit. Rick
  21. EJL923

    EJL923 Feeling the Heat

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    I do know this, if i brought one of those out to start a fire with my friends around, they would revoke my man card.
  22. schlot

    schlot Minister of Fire

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    I didn't see anything disrespectful in his answer that warranted you get all bent out of shape.
  23. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Let it go. Discuss the topic if you like, but don't go off on an unrelated tangent...one of the quickest ways to get a thread shut down. Rick
  24. Alan Harris

    Alan Harris New Member

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    Seriously? Even if you were scratching and downing shots at the same time??
    firefighterjake likes this.
  25. seige101

    seige101 Minister of Fire

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    I was going to say the same thing.

    My suggestion to Alan would be for this product to meet both of those needs (air mattress inflater/fire starter). Instant increase of the market place

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