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Great American Pellets (aka Keystone Pellets) story Saturday 3/12/11

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Alternative Guy, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. Alternative Guy

    Alternative Guy New Member

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    Copying the format used by another poster, with a slightly less descriptive story.
    This was pubished yesterday:
    http://www.tnonline.com/node/181103

    The story says that the plant in Palmerton PA has begun production. They use whole trees, just like the Geneva Wood Fuels plant another poster mentioned.

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  2. Avalon

    Avalon Member

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    It's great that another pellet producer is coming into the market. The more producers, the lower the prices for everyone through competition!

    However, I am a little uncertain about how I feel about them harvesting trees, rather than recycling sawdust from other business activities. Part of the enjoyment I get from my pellet stove is knowing that I'm heating my house with what would have ended up in a landfill.

    Am I off in thinking that most pellet brands are made from waste sawdust?
  3. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    Not that I know the entire pellet business but I do know that green wood will cause problems with pellets. No how much green wood is going to lead the way cause I do not know.

    Eric
  4. Alternative Guy

    Alternative Guy New Member

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    I heard that there is a large source of trees (3000 acres?) somewhere in Eastern PA that are diseased. Whether that had any influence in building the plant, I don't know. Perhaps not, as they are expendible.

    As a woodburner, I burn trees that are culled mostly because they died or were removed for construction. So I have a similar good feeling about using non-lumber quality trees that may otherwise be left to rot or be burned outside.

    The enthusiasts here can speak to statistics. The local plant Treecycle (which appears to be failing) switched from recycling stumps and pallets and construction waste to freshly ground trees (ground by a nearby supplier) this past year, which seems to have resulted in a higher quality product. I believe there is a flooring manufacturer that uses its own cutoff waste in a pellet operation.
  5. Como

    Como Minister of Fire

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    The 3 manufacturers in my area use logs, if they incorporate recycled material they certainly do not advertise doing so.
  6. Madhatter

    Madhatter Member

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    I have been watching this pellet mill as it comes online as it is only about 8 miles from my house. Hope they make a good pellet!
    From their website ( http://www.greatamericanpellets.com/index.html ):

    At Great American Pellets, we not only protect the environment - We improve it.

    At Great American Pellets, we get our raw material from trees harvested in Timber Stand Improvement Projects.

    Timber Stand Improvement (TSI) is the process of reducing the density of living trees for the overall improvement of a given forest stand. This thinning allows the remaining, trees to thrive.


    Currently, the amount of wood grown in the United States is more than double the amount harvested. On average, undesirable trees occupy one third of the total growing space available. Forests with many small diameter trees can lead to underdeveloped crowns, poor tree growth, and poor form. This can result in low-quality timber, high tree mortality, an underdeveloped organic layer, and little to no understory or natural regeneration.

    The utilization of low-grade forest products over the past few decades has created new opportunities for landowners to realize financial benefits from trees that previously were of little value but are an ideal source of bio fuel.

    There are many economic, ecological and wildlife-related benefits associated with TSI. Because TSI is designed to improve the health and productivity of the forest, many of the above treatments also benefit such things as water quality, forest soils, and aesthetic value.

    As forest improvement measures are taken, the forest canopy will begin to open up and will in turn encourage vigorous growth by the remaining tree crowns. Healthy tree crowns provide more shade, help maintain moderate water and soil temperatures, and produce more organic matter With more moisture and growing room available trees are better able to withstand stresses caused by insects, disease and drought

    Wildlife also highly benefits from TSI. Increased crown growth yields higher fruit production and can even reduce the amount of time it takes a tree to reach maturity. New forest openings promote an understory growth which will increase the forests’ structural diversity and attract a wider variety of wildlife species.

    Great American Pellets is proud to do our part in improving our environment by supporting Timber Stand Improvement.
  7. mascoma

    mascoma Feeling the Heat

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    Don't believe the hype about keeping sawdust out of landfills, it never went there.
    Tipping fee at our local landfill is $70/ton, how much dust in anyone dumping at that rate?
    Whole tree operations keep loggers in business that would be unemployed otherwise.

    Believe it or not timber operations also help keep land undeveloped. Paper companies owned most of norther VT/NH/ME and there is now little paper produced here. If they don't use it for something they may sell it to be developed or cut up into many privatly owned parcels.

    And last time I cut a tree down, another grew back!
  8. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    First time poster I just scored 10 bags of these at the Cozy Barn in Windgap $ 4.00 a bag I'll test them out and see how they perform. They also have Hammers & Turmans in stock $ 4.80
  9. imacman

    imacman Guest

    Welcome to the forum Will. Hope you can post a pic of your stove for the members, and the test results on those pellets.
  10. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for the welcome my test won't be anything like Jay man's that guy is great I've learned so much from reading his posts. I'll give you my opinion, but like what everyone says try a few bags before you commit to the tons. Working on the stove pic's may need the help of my daughter as sometimes I'm technology challenged if you know what I mean.
  11. Alternative Guy

    Alternative Guy New Member

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    We have great weather to try them out. Chilly today in the Poconos. Anxious to hear about how these new pellets compare with the competition.
  12. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    Yeah just waiting for the hopper to empty give the stove a quick clean [ full total clean last weekend a clean stove is a happy stove]
    and give them a fair test
  13. slvrblkk

    slvrblkk Minister of Fire

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    Where did you guys pick the pellets up at the plant? I'm only about 20 minutes away and would like to grab some to try.
  14. Alternative Guy

    Alternative Guy New Member

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    That is Windgap, PA, about 15 mi east of the plant, off route 33.
  15. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    Hey silver & black the Cozy Barn is just off rt 512 in Wind Gap it's the 1st left past the Burger King down in the back I think they have Sunday hrs. 630 Washington st. 610 863 8162 They just these in this week . Hope this helps
  16. slvrblkk

    slvrblkk Minister of Fire

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    Yup...thanks, I bought pellets from them before and didn't realize they would be carrying them.....nice people.....what was the price on those?
  17. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    They were $ 4.00 a bag nice folks help you load ect.. Hope these Great Americans turn out to be a good pellet. As you know the big boxes in our neck of the woods seem to run out of pellets in Feb. but I would rather give my $$$ to a local guy you can count on even if it costs a bit more.
  18. philbrick

    philbrick Member

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    Currently, the amount of wood grown in the United States is more than double the amount harvested. I have heard there is more woods today there was say in the 1700 or 1800. The reason being is then if a fire started then it could travel for months until mother nature put it out. Today we have firefighters. To add to that everybody in the world could live in the state of texas and the density would be the same a NY city
  19. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    Hey phillbrick what are you saying???
  20. philbrick

    philbrick Member

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    That there is more wood today then a few 100 yrs ago. A fire then could travel for months. Again that is what i read
  21. slvrblkk

    slvrblkk Minister of Fire

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    Yea, I hear ya....I'm going to stop by tomorrow and pick up a few bags to try....
  22. Alternative Guy

    Alternative Guy New Member

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  23. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    hopper empty 1st bag of GAP's burning as we speak
  24. will711

    will711 Minister of Fire

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    Ok 1st impressions down to 16* last night first floor where stove is located a cozy 72* approx. 550 sq. ft. open kitchen dining living room R 30 in attic R 11 walls Anderson windows Tyveck wrapped. I run stove in stove temp mode set at 4.5 feed rate 4 distribution blower lowest setting. Into the hopper very few fines and saw dust, pellets consistent length 1"< , flame white blue orange color, ash light and fluffy no clinkers or clumps, heat output appears to be very good I don't have a IR gun but using the hand test in front of blower don't leave it there to long you may start to cook it. So for me these appear to be a very good pellet at a good price $ 4.00/ bag and the plant is 25 miles from home so it should keep shipping costs down. I say try them see how they preform for you. I'll continue to burn these for a long term test if any issues arise I'll keep you posted .
  25. slvrblkk

    slvrblkk Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for the update....heading to the Cozy Barn at noon to pick up a few bags......

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