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Gasser function differences?

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by 711mhw, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. 711mhw

    711mhw Feeling the Heat

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    I do have the other one, I just didn't haul my lazy a$$ down to look before. Fred, they changed the doors somewhat and the area on the door that is in the path of ash flow. They have a pc. of SS there to deflect things. As for the refractory, how many times were you replacing the center bricks? I understand that they are "sacrifical" and exlected to wear. Did you loose the "shelf" that they sit on? I do see some erosion on the door seals but that was explained to me as being a reg. maint. type thing. My guess looking at them is I'll be ready for them next season (#3) . Looks like a few bucks of sillicone caulk and some fire rope. I wonder how fast I can unscrew that plug and get another aquastat in the hole! :lol:

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  2. Fred61

    Fred61 Minister of Fire

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    There was just enough points of shelf left to keep the bricks from falling through.
  3. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    This is good, but if you have it to "on" say at 140F, then it won't go "off" until it drops back to 140F less differential (or "on" at 140F + differential and "off" at 140F), and that still is a lot of fan running before "off" even though the fire is out. It could be better than that.
  4. Fred61

    Fred61 Minister of Fire

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    The problem is that you need that wide range in order not to fool the control. If you have only a small piece glowing for re-light it may take quite a while to get a fire that is actually adding heat to the boiler. During that time the boiler could cool more and kick off on "no fuel".
  5. infinitymike

    infinitymike Minister of Fire

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    The guys at AHS said They use a Honeywell dual aquastat part # L4018B 1096 and an on/off (start/run) switch to bypass the shutdown limit. I cant find it but CAN find L4081B 1096. and the wiring schematics is in the manual.

    What do you guys think. How would this go together?
  6. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    There has been discussion of this method of control, which involves a manual start with a bypass switch "on" until the sensing location temperature rises above the lo-limit shutoff, then turning the bypass switch "off" with the lo-limit now "on", and then when the sensing location temperature again falls to the lo-limit point, the lo-limit switches off and shuts off the circuit. Honeywell L4018B .

    Rather than the manual on-off bypass switch, an on-off timer switch would work just as well, and obviate the need to turn a switch off, and also a temperature controller with a manual reset would work well.

    As mentioned in posts also, the exact location of the sensor will be very important to determine actual "fire out" as opposed to some other temperature condition which would turn the boiler off and not let the fire restart. This can be complicated if the control is to handle idle situations. It would be quite easy in a situation of burn until out with no idling.
  7. 711mhw

    711mhw Feeling the Heat

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    quote]The problem is that you need that wide range in order not to fool the control. If you have only a small piece glowing for re-light it may take quite a while to get a fire that is actually adding heat to the boiler. During that time the boiler could cool more and kick off on “no fuelâ€. [/quote]You guys are really helping me connect the dots. Is there a was to monitor this (out of fuel) with a stack temp reading, I would think that in a WG application, with that giant fan running (especially sucking in the cold outside supply air) you would have a reasonably resopnsive reading compared to waiting for the water jacket to cool enough to activate any switching. If this would work, is there a simple open/closed type of thermo. like the beautifuly simple aquastat, or are we getting into relays and switching stuff?
  8. infinitymike

    infinitymike Minister of Fire

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    You guys are really helping me connect the dots. Is there a was to monitor this (out of fuel) with a stack temp reading, I would think that in a WG application, with that giant fan running (especially sucking in the cold outside supply air) you would have a reasonably resopnsive reading compared to waiting for the water jacket to cool enough to activate any switching. If this would work, is there a simple open/closed type of thermo. like the beautifuly simple aquastat, or are we getting into relays and switching stuff?[/quote]

    711,

    I spoke to AHS and the sell the controllers to shut the unit on low temp as well has have it cycle on every so often fro a set time ( that feature would be used to heat DHW in the summer or used in the shoulder seasons to keep it ready for heat).

    The are about $250 each.
    They also told me what the parts are if I wanted to buy it and build it on my own. I looked into and it willl cost more for me to buy the stuff on my own rather than just buying it off the shelf from AHS
  9. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    I wish I had the technical knowledge some of you guys have. Then sometimes I think we might be making this wood burning process a bit to complicated. We are, after all just burning wood. One of the reasons I bought the Wood Gun is because it was so simple. A few Aquastats, a circulation pump or two, and a fan. Simple. But I do see how having some of the extras could really help with the efficiency and comfort (or piece of mind) that come with them. I guess the only way for me to find out is to offer for you to come over to my house some weekend, buy you guys all the beer you want, food, card games, and let you install the parts on my Wood Gun that I buy and try it out. What do you say guys? It could be like Pimp my Wood Gun or something like that. I will be willing to be the guinea pig, canary in the cave, whatever you want to call. Oh boy, the things I have to do for you guys. Let me know soon, I need to plan for this.
  10. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    Wood burning is simple. Some of us burners, like me, not only want our gasifier to operate as efficiently as it can, but also style other aspects of our lives to conserve. Good for the environment, good for our grandchildren, and good on the budget -- better use of that money elsewhere rather than blowing it off in a puff of smoke.
  11. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    ;-) I know what you guys are trying to do Jim, and I think that is great. And I am envious of yours, and others abilities. That is why it started with, "I wish I had the technical knowledge.....That was just my attempt, and apparently a poor one, to have a laugh with you guys. :cheese: Have a good one.
  12. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    I wasn't being negative in my comment -- 5 years ago I made a mess of my first attempt at installing my Tarm. As they say, inquisitive minds want to know. I've never stopped being inquisitive. I look not only for what works, but also to answer the question "why does it work?"

    In January 1981 as I contemplated buying my first PC, I went to the computer store, the sales guy pushed a keyboard button and said, "look what happens." I looked, and then asked him why that happened when he pushed that button. No answer. I bought the computer, but I also then learned basic and other programming, did a little assembler and machine code, learned how to reprogram a keyboard, developed some software that I still use, and never stopped asking questions.

    And I enjoy laughing with all the guys and gals. Keep at it.
  13. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    Well here is a computer joke for you then! :lol: Probably been around for a while. I'm going to go load my boiler now. There, I mentioned boiler, I am keeping the thread on track for the boiler room. ;-)

    Bill Gates once reportedly compared the computer industry with the auto industry and stated: "If GM had kept up with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving twenty-five dollar cars that got 1000 miles to the gallon."

    In response to Bill's comments, General Motors issued a press release stating: if GM had developed technology like Microsoft, we would all be driving cars with the following characteristics:

    For no reason whatsoever your car would crash twice a day.

    Every time they painted the lines on the road you would have to buy a new car.

    Occasionally, executing a maneuver such as a left turn, would cause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would have to re-install the engine.

    Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, was reliable, five times as fast, and twice as easy to drive, but would only run on five percent of the roads.

    New seats would force everyone to have the same size butt.

    Occasionally for no reason whatsoever, your car would lock you out and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously lifted the door handle, turned the key, and grabbed hold of the radio antenna.

    GM would require all car buyers to also purchase a deluxe set of Rand McNally road maps (now a GM subsidiary), even though they neither need them nor want them. Attempting to delete this option would immediately cause the car's performance to diminish by 50 percent or more. Moreover, GM would become a target for investigation by the Justice Dept.

    Every time GM introduced a new model, car buyers would have to learn how to drive all over again because none of the controls would operate in the same manner as the old car.

    You'd press the "start" button to shut off the engine.
  14. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    Sorry about 711. I will get your thread back on subject. I have been wondering if anyone on the site runs one of the newer model Wood Doctor outdoor gassification boilers. http://www.mainewooddoctor.com Just curious how they like it. What is different about the design, how efficient are they, etc. Anyone have any experience with them or know someone who does? If so, can you or they eplain some of the benefits of them.
  15. rkusek

    rkusek Minister of Fire

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    Jim's experience is what makes this country great in my opinion. It's great to be able to figure things out and understand them on your own so you don't need to rely on somewhere else. You don't have to be an expert to be informed on the basics. The same applies to many other facets of life whether it be food, shelter, politics, self defense, our kids schools, etc. Any time someone tries hide the details or can't explain reasons for their actions I start to question their motives. A public that is informed on a variety of areas is a good thing.
  16. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    Jim’s experience is what makes this country great in my opinion. It’s great to be able to figure things out and understand them on your own so you don’t need to rely on somewhere else. You don’t have to be an expert to be informed on the basics. The same applies to many other facets of life whether it be food, shelter, politics, self defense, our kids schools, etc. Any time someone tries hide the details or can’t explain reasons for their actions I start to question their motives. A public that is informed on a variety of areas is a good thing.

    Very true indeed. And it is a great thing we have so many of you guys that are very good at figuring this type of stuff out. There is so much to learn and not enough time in the day to learn everything I would like to. I use to try to do all the repairs and updates to my home, while at the same time working 50 hours a week at the job, helping a friend or family, etc. A lot of us do this to try and save money. As my family grew I quickly realized I just do not have the time, and sometimes energy, to do it. So I started hiring some of it out. Sometimes you just have to. Concrete pours over a yard or two, electrical and boiler stuff were three of the things I decided hire out. Not enough experience in them and not enough time to learn enough to get good at it. Oh, taping and mudding sheetrock as well. Don't like doing, don't want to do it. With a wife, four kids, a large house, and a very large family that live all around me, I do not have the time anymore. I also like to spend my time cutting/splitting/stacking wood. I really enjoy this. You know what they say. "Do what you love and you will never work a day in your life." Well, I have to agree with that. Even though I can not cut/split/stack wood all the time. I try to do it every chance I get. That makes me :)
  17. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    One of the things that sold me on the GW100 (1st Gen) was the simplicity.

    there are two controls:

    1) Aquastat - +/- 10 °F differential
    2)Flow switch - closes damper if flow not detected.

    Control #2 above leaks, and tended to be problematic on re-start. It's currently disconected.

    After about 1 season of use and much reading on Hearth.com, I have decided that my unit, like other RMND units, it's somewhere between a traditional OWB and a Euro-style down draft. I like the simplicity of mine, but I'm reasonably sure it's not as efficient as other secondary combustion hydronic units.

    The other 'advantage' of the RMND units (I think, since I've never operated the other style) is that these units are a bit more forgiving on wood. It can be a bit 'less-dry' and definitly can be unsplit. Yep, the higher MC will still cost efficiency.

    Jimbo
  18. mark123

    mark123 Member

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    The cycle timer on my E-180 is an Intermatic 4 hour cycle timer C8845. Also I have the wood/oil combo and the low temp. shut down works in wood only mode.
  19. MNBioman

    MNBioman New Member

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    I'm a little late on this thread but I just noticed it and thought I woud add my 2 cents worth. I Have heated with wood for about 35 years with the last 17 using indoor wood boilers. I bought a Greenwood 4 years ago when I moved into a new home that was in a pole building. I bought the boiler because of its simplicty, 1 aquastat that controlled the draft and ciulating pump. Unfortunatly it was a bad choice and greenwwod went bankrupt 6 mo. after I bought it. I had to scrap it this spring and just finished installing a Biomass 60 about 3 weeks ago. I fired up the boiler and could not get it burning up to temp. After 2 days of use the controller blew a fuse and them the fans quit about an hour after filling the stove full of wood. I got Zenon to send me a new controller which burned out the circuit board just before the Power diode that controls the fans. I took the panel off panels off the stove and found the wires for the power, the rear fan and the circulating pump laying against the boiler, melted and shorted out. I rewired everything running the wires in conduit and on the outside of the stove. I had to solder a small wire across the burned out part on the circuit board. I got everythig working and the stove finally up to temp. It has taken me a week to get thing figured out. First of all I had problems with the wood hanging up and the stove going into no fuel mode. I have figured out that I need to have about 6-8" of coals in the stovve and now have no more problems with the wood hanging up in the stove. I love the stove now but am looking at the posability of putting putting a second LCD display in the main room of the house so I don't have to go back to my boiler room to check on the status of the boiler. Secondly I would like to but a warning light or busser in the main part of the hose to let me know if the boiler temp drop below 160. Anybody have any ideas on this? Could I solder wires on the circuit board for the LCD and run them 50 feet to another part of the house and conect them to another LCD display?

  20. I remember something in the controller manual about outputs that could be used for an alarm
  21. MNBioman

    MNBioman New Member

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    There is some info in the controller manual but I think the alarm is for over heating not to sound when your water temp gets low. I need to give Zenon a call on this some time to get his input.
  22. 711mhw

    711mhw Feeling the Heat

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    Could somebody tell me about the Garn units. They seem to be highly respected here and I was curious why? (not be sarcastic at all) I understand that the built in storage might be handy but what else? What happened to Rick? the last thing I rember reading from him was some water trouble and some serious efforts on his part cleaning and getting back in good order. Why do they use a non pres. design?
    Where I'm coming from here is I really love my radiant heating sys. and making hot water with wood. I shamefully, did very little research on wood boilers, (we were very busy moving out of state) but luckly, I'm completely satisfied with my whole set up. I was taught that you have 2 ears and 1 mouth, and to use them in that proportion. I do a bunch more reading (here) than I do commenting. I've had quite a few admirers of my system and (friends and neighbors) and I realize that the combination that works for me, might not be the best for sombody else's situation and I would like to be able to offer realistic, practical suggestions for them, allways suggesting to do their own homework, and hire a pro for the radiant design. Tell me about the Garns, Thanks
  23. bpirger

    bpirger Minister of Fire

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    Anything particular you want addressed? I spoke about the Garn back on the first page, as i think Jim might have too.

    Very simple, wide out burn into storage, once a day a in the heating season. Very easy to start fires. One every few to four days in the summer. Rugged. Solid. Heavy. Not cheap ($13K for the 1500). There's a fan attached....and that's about it. No other "parts". No flappers, no motors, no anything else. Just plumbing. Well, there is a controller which I described in the first page (post #8), but I haven't installed it yet. I have a thread a week or two ago about the one year anniversary with the Garn....way too long.

    When I hear people talking about bridging, smoking, creosote, storage plumbing, etc. I'm SO happy I bought the Garn.

    When I read Jim's thread last year about his corrosion problems, I almost crapped my pants! But hopefully not in the GArn water, which was the suspected culprit with Jim....chicken poo in the water and biological attack on his system. This is the biggest drawback to the Garn that I know of, it is an open system, and you have to maintain the water. So twice a year samples are sent off and you "trust" the water guys, and put in what they tell you, or however you want to deal with the water. This testing is "included" with the Garn purchase price supposedly. I'm due to send off a sample now. Last I looked, few weeks ago, water was crystal clear and no signs of problems....after 1 year in operation. Only initial treatment required so far, included with the Garn unit.

    One other "issue" with a Garn I'd say.....If you have baseboard or water to air HX, where you MUST have hot water (180 and above say), then the Garn might not be the best unit for you. I find my Garn (with 11K BTU/gallon) won't stay over 180 (say from 190 down to 180) for very long under a load, maybe just hours. No way could I get through a cold night and have 180 water. 160? Maybe. But not 180. So in order to really benefit from the Garn, radiant heat is much preferred, becuase there I can go down to 120 and be warm. Heck, this morning the Garn was at 99 and the house was toasty. Hadn't burned in 48 hours though. Now, it wasn't cold out, only 30F or so, but the floors can be heated with 100 degree water...although perhaps not when it is -20F outside. So if you require hot water for all the time you are heating, i.e. baseboard, I think I would recommend one of the other boilers that can "throttle" on and off. Of course, you have all those issues with shutting down (smoke, creosote, etc.) but presumably the high temp can be supplied longer there. I don't have baseboard or water to air, I'm all radiant, so those with bb or otherwise might be able to comment better. Of course if you planned on 140F water with your BB or panel install, you can go to lower temps....

    Otherwise, so far I find the Garn great. It's big. The 1500 is about 6' tall and about 10' long....and about 3500 pounds dry, so it might not fit well in the basement! Primarily they are in out buildings.

    Oh yeah, all the tiny splits I see in the other gassers? Holy cow....I'd have to split all my wood again in half or maybe quarters! I split everything and cut to 24" (my splitter size), but my splits are probably twice what I see in the other gassers.

    I do worry about the long term water/corrosion, but only because of the amount of money involved and the potential frustration it would be. Presumably with proper monitoring, it will outlast me. I'm 42. heaterman has showed us some old ones still going strong after 20+ years.....It convinced me!
  24. 711mhw

    711mhw Feeling the Heat

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    pbirger, I must apologise, I did read your resopnse and it was too long ago for my memory! Sounds like the Garn is a real nice fit for radiant. It's a wonderful thing isn't it! This is my first experiance with radiant and I'm still in the honeymoon phase with it! So it was a chicken sh!t problem that was not a chicken sh!t problem for Rick/Jim (again, memory) I hope he has it worked out. Do you know why they (Garn) don't run pressurised? It seems like it would eliminate a worry. I know that there are requirements of some sort for a pressurised vessel (I'm using terminoligy that I've heard but don't know) but that might just be up at steam pressures. Thanks for your resopnse.
  25. bpirger

    bpirger Minister of Fire

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    The only reason I know of would be the cost/danger associated with a pressurized vessel? Martin Lunde, the owner of Dectra (Garn), is a pretty conservative engineering guy I think...and I bet back in the early 80's or whenever the first ones were built, the idea of a pressurized vessel with a fire in it was a concern. Yeah, my oil boiler is exactly that too....but the oil boiler can be shut off instantly almost, a fire can't. I'd have to think that is the idea. How thick is the walls of a propane tank? With all the inspection costs, etc. associated with a pressurized vessel, I bet that just pushed into the open system. And apparently it was successful enough.

    But I have to agree, a pressurized Garn would be really nice. What happens when you hit the 30 psi mark and your fire is still raging because someone did something stupid? Boiloff water into a "dump zone" in a big way? Or dump it on the floor like my oil boiler would? But again, the oil fire shuts off fast, another 60 pounds of wood is still going to burn....or perhaps you could shut off the blower and put out the fire...though that is completely against the Garn rules of efficient burn....

    Just my thoughts....maybe Heaterman will fill us in with more details....

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