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Has anyone heard of Liberty Bricks

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by timothyjok, Jun 26, 2008.

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  1. toonjie

    toonjie Member

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    New Fairfield, CT
    My 4 pallets of Liberty Bricks arrived yesterday. (I still don't know if they are bricks or blocks since there was no brand markings either on the bricks themselves or the individual packages or the pallets.

    Here's what they look like:

    [​IMG]

    The guy delivering them got his pallet jack stuck on my driveway, (got to get around to paving it), and long story short, I had to get a chain from the neighbor and he pulled the pallet jack back onto the road with the truck. In doing so, he tipped over the one pallet of bricks. He was very apologetic and stacked all the packs and I just used the broken packs to fill my wood box. That was the only adventure, now onto the review. The bricks are very non-descript and have no markings and just look like compressed particle board or plywood. The shrink wrap packaging is very skimpy so that if you try to carry 2 packs and use one hand to open the door, the pressure on the one spot of the pack with the other pack on top will often break open the shrink wrap. I finally put them in those mail cartons you're not supposed to have to carry 2 at a time. There are 10 bricks in a pack and the delivery guy said they are 3 pound bricks and the Bios are 2 pounds. Every row in the pallet had 1 bag of 8, I assume to fit the pallet. He also said the guy that developed Biobricks sold the Liberty Brick guy the machine to make them, so they are made on the same machine. He also said that his company, BT Enterprises, only made $20 a pallet. (@$255 a pallet)

    Here's some of the packs that fell off the pallet:

    [​IMG]

    Poor guy had to stack them:

    [​IMG]

    I brought 2 pallets worth inside yesterday, it took about 2 hours a pallet:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The first clear advantage is in stacking and space taken up. If they truly are equivalent to a cord and a half, then I was able to store 3 months worth of wood inside the house in the same amount of space as usually 2 weeks worth of cordwood takes up. On the downside, the bricks have none of the ambience of cordwood, they smell like you just cut a pice of plywood with your circular saw. I was impressed with how well the bricks held together, no brick broke apart even under the weight of the pallet tipping over.

    On to the burning: I was very impressed! I started a fire at 9:00pm using 6 bricks and simply put 1 brick in the stove (Quad 5100 insert) and put a Super Cedar firestarter, (thanks for the free sample guys!) and then built a tee pee over that with 2 bricks on either side and one directly over the Super Cedar. The fire caught with no further meddling and temp rose nice and steady. Once the bricks were fully engaged, I started damping it down and I was able to damp it down all the way and still maintain 600 degrees on the stove top. 5 hours later I added 2 bricks and 3 hours later 2 more and the stove was still on at 9:00am. (We have a newborn and it was my night, so perfect for watching the bricks burn overnight!) It was in the low 50's, so just a low fire to take the chill off for the newborn and wifee. It averaged a brick an hour, I used 12 bricks from 9:00pm to 9:00am. I'll post more as I keep burning, but so far they burn great and it is great knowing how much wood I have right in the house, no worries about all this rain on the East Coast, I can now burn until Christmas!

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  2. FireBurner

    FireBurner New Member

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    I am curious to know if you used fire bricks at the bottom of your stove since they burn hotter? I have already order 3 units (300 blocks) of EnviBlocks but will not take receipt till October from a place in MA (delivery $80 for all units).

    I certainly hope I have success as you did with the Libety Bricks but leave the adventure to your driveway (since mine is gravel too)!
  3. backpack09

    backpack09 Minister of Fire

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    You do not need to ADD firebrick to your stove because of a certain fuel. IF your stove originally had firebricks, they should be installed, if it did not come with bricks you should not add them.
  4. High_Iron

    High_Iron Member

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    where is the pic of them burning? ;)
  5. jbroich

    jbroich New Member

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    Thanks for this report, toonjie. Please keep us up to date with further experiments in burning these.
  6. sparklow

    sparklow Member

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    From your photos I can tell you that the Liberty Bricks do not appear to be packaged with the same care that BioBricks are. I bought my first two pallets of BioBricks this year and I was very impressed with the quality of the packaging as I left them in the yard on the skid that they were delivered on from July until last week when I brought the first pallet into the house. To say that this has been a wet summer would be an understatement! They were in perfect condition with no evidence of moisture contamination. I am going to leave the second pallet in the yard until I need them this winter. I would think that the quality of the packaging for this type of product is very important.
  7. toonjie

    toonjie Member

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    [quote author="FireBurner" date="1222470624"]I am curious to know if you used fire bricks at the bottom of your stove since they burn hotter? I have already order 3 units (300 blocks) of EnviBlocks but will not take receipt till October from a place in MA (delivery $80 for all units).

    I certainly hope I have success as you did with the Libety Bricks but leave the adventure to your driveway (since mine is gravel too)![/quote

    My Quad has firebricks on the bottom already. Last night I just built the fire on top of old ashes, but tonight I'm going to clean the whole stove out and report back about how much ash I get burning Liberty Bricks exclusively.
  8. toonjie

    toonjie Member

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    I definitely agree the packaging needs work! Looks like they are just in the initial stages of development because there isn't even any kind of wrapper or identifying mark on them. The shrink wrapping on the 30lbs bag of bricks is barely strong enough to hold them with two hands, if you grab them the wrong way, they rip open-the wrapper is weaker than the one the kids toys come in with a Happy Meal at McDonalds!
  9. trailblaze

    trailblaze New Member

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    hey man .....want to pass the phone number for a cord thats only 70 bucks!!


    i like that price!
  10. sparklow

    sparklow Member

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    A C/S/D cord of hardwood is going for approx. $220 in my part of CT. You probably couldn't fill the trunkl of your car for $70!
  11. jotul8

    jotul8 New Member

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    I found this site for Liberty Bricks and another article that said that they are made on the same machine as the BIobricks (bought the machine from the Tom the BioBrick owner). Not sure if the composition of either brick is standardized but looks similar. I can get 6 full tons of liberty bricks delivered to my door in s.maine for the same price per ton that that I have to go pick up a 1900lb pallet (one at a time from the local distributor) I'm working with some neighbors to split the 6 tons load, if we do I'll be able to compare them to the pallet of BioBricks that we just went through.


    http://libertybricks.com/index.html
  12. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    just saw an atricle in the paper about a sanford, ME company that makes "biobricks" they have eco cast right into them, big fish fence has them for sale, at ( I think) $400 a ton they seem pricey, but the maker says they can't make them fast enough.
  13. asabatelli

    asabatelli New Member

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    CT
    I've now burned 1 ton of these, and I have some serious concerns. The firebox of my Hearthstone stove, for the first time in 4 years, has a layer of very hard creosote-like gunk on everything, especially the after-burn tubes on top (some of the holes are even clogged!) I decided to chip apart several blocks to see what was in these things, and found a range of largish chunks (1x1, 1x2 in.) of material that clearly isn't wood. (Photo coming). Lots of pieces have a white hard shiny surface (even found some smaller pieces with red and blue hard shiny surfaces), and an underside of cardboard-like material (appears to be something like a press-wood plastic veneer cabinet piece, and I believe the woods used in these also contain glues/binders). Other pieces are clearly varnished wood. I've contacted the company and am waiting to hear, but I'm worried that the plastics, glues and varnishes when subjected to the hot temps. of the firebox may have damaged a very expensive stove... I've stopped burning them because I want to do a thorough inspection of my new stainless chimney...Let's hope there's no irreparable damage! In the photos already posted here, you can see some pieces of material that have a distinctly non-wood-like color. I burned Biobricks last year with no issues at all.

    Attached Files:

  14. radesper

    radesper New Member

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    Please keep us posted. I recently bought 2 pallets worth because I couldn't find Biobricks, which I used last winter and loved. I've also have concerns with Liberty bricks. They don't seem to burn as long or as hot as Biobricks, perhaps that has something to do w/ the creosote-like build-up. They also expand quite a bit so if you stack them too tight they turn into a solid mass of wood chips that don't burn. They are definitely an inferior product.

    I haven't noticed non-wood or processed wood in the bricks but I'll be looking carefully for them from now on. I'm a renter and can't afford to ruin my landlord's insert! I have noticed that some darker wood on the outside as a shiny look but I'm thinking that's because it is hardwood that has been "buffed" by the machine. It doesn't look like veneer. Let us know what the makers have to say.
  15. nhtodd

    nhtodd New Member

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    I have some input on Liberty Bricks for those considering them. Last year I burned 4 ton of Biobricks so I have these to compare against. As others have noted before I find the packaging could use some work the plastic is very weak and must be handled carefully or they do break open. The bricks appear to be the exact same size as Biobricks but they are not nearly as dense. It seems like they are made up of larger pieces if wood rather than sawdust. They seem to burn less intensely then biobricks and find I need to add cordwood to get a good fire. They seem to burn almost as cleanly as Biobricks producing fine ash. I have not found chunks of non wood product in mine however I find they do seem to put off a non-wood smell when burning almost like burning rubber. I have checked the stack and they are burning with out smoke so I am not sure what is going on.

    Inspecting my stove I have not seen any buildup or blocked tubes so again I can only assume they are burning cleanly.

    The price is rather high at 336/Ton and if they were as good as biobricks I would have lived with it but at this price I will return to burning cordwood.
  16. sullystull

    sullystull Feeling the Heat

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    http://richmond.craigslist.org/hsh/961777686.html

    Came across this ad on Richmond Craigslist. Seems like you can get a sweet deal right from the factory on their "factory seconds". $40 per 1/2 ton. For those within driving distance to Richmond...might be worth it. Not sure what "factory seconds" are though. I will be down in Richmond over Christmas visiting the in-laws...I might make a trip over to the factory and see what's up.
  17. radesper

    radesper New Member

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    Hello All,
    Well I contacted BT Enterprises (CT) where I got the Liberty Bricks and told them how disappointed I was in them. Apparently, there are two types of Liberty Bricks - one, which is similar to BioBricks and the other - which I got - that are less dense. BT didn't realize that the second type of bricks were so horrible. They have received other complaints now and agreed to exchange them for BioBricks (which they just got in) or the other type of Liberty Bricks (which they swear by). I'm getting one of each. I've attached two photos - one of the "good" Liberty bricks and the other of the "bad" bricks.

    Attached Files:

  18. asabatelli

    asabatelli New Member

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    Ok, so I spoke with Liberty Bricks, and they insist that they use all wood in their bricks--but they also say that there is a possibility of "some contamination" since they buy their scrap wood from outside sources, and don't police everything that goes into the grinders. They do grind pallets and he said they also use some door skins that have been primed with a water based primer (probably the white piece in the photo above). One of my pallets were the chunkier bricks, and he suggested I try to use these since, if anything, they have more wood in them. I've been burning just these for a few days now, and the inside of the stove does appear to be a bit cleaner--though they clearly don't burn as long as the denser bricks made from finer materials. So it appears the "good" bricks may actually have been the ones that led to more deposits. I frankly don't think the denser bricks (made of more finely ground material) are necessarily as "clean" as the biobricks. I think both styles are inferior to the biobricks. The after burn tubes on my stove are covered in dense creosote. The smoke smells very bad/chemical--not like wood--with both types of bricks. I'm convinced after spending nearly an hour on the phone with them that they really don't know what's going into these things; it depends on what someone throws into a grinder and sells to them. My sense is that quality probably varies greatly from batch to batch--so you may get a more pure, hardwood/sawdust based batch, or you may not. It's a crap shoot. With pellets, there is generally a label telling you exactly what kind of wood you are getting, and you pay accordingly--more for hard woods, etc. I'm glad to hear BT is taking these back. I'm going to have to call them next week and see if I can work out an exchange for the Biobricks. Thanks, everyone, for your info/input.

    One last note: the man from Libertybricks was a very nice guy, and was genuinely trying to offer helpful suggestions. I think these kinds of companies are a good thing--for the environment and for job creation in the U.S., etc. I just think companies like this need to be sensitive to the requirements of expensive stoves designed to burn all-wood products.
  19. radesper

    radesper New Member

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    Thanks for the update. That's interesting that the build-up was from the denser Liberty Bricks bricks. I decided that I'm going to stay away from the Liberty Bricks altogether and changed my order to all BioBricks (thank God they're are back). I agree that these type of businesses need to be supported but of course only if they put out a good product. It sounds like Liberty Bricks needs to better control their inputs. Happy heating everyone.
  20. toonjie

    toonjie Member

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    Loc:
    New Fairfield, CT
    Glad I checked back on this thread because I have had some of the same problems. First, the smell of Liberty bricks definitely leads me to believe that there are either some laminates in there or plywood with glue, etc. The smell ranged from a house fire to a chemical smell. I also had a cracked baffle board and loads of creosote build up. We actually stopped getting a draft and I had to climb up on the roof and the screen of the cap was actually totally blocked with soot. I examined the liner and it already had more creosote buildup than last year and I have only burned Liberty Bricks since it was cleaned. I haven't used Biobricks, so I don't have any other pressed wood product to compare it to, but the burn time was fairly good if the bricks were stacked very tightly and the heat output was good. Consumption was somewhere between a cord and a cord and a half being equivalent to a pallet. 4 pallets got me from September 20 until February 1st in one of the worst winters ever. We usually would use a cord a month for the colder months.
  21. toonjie

    toonjie Member

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    I just went to BT Pellet and picked up 10 bags of the brand new Liberty Bricks right off the truck. I can tell you there is even a difference in the way they smelled as I drove them home in the car and there is no bad smell when burning them. They were all smooth and no visible contaminates in them as with the old ones. I'll let you know if the burn time is better, but just wanted to let everyone know that it seems they have vastly improved the screening process and gotten the contaminates out. I also picked up a pack of the 8 pound overnight logs they are carrying. They are claiming a 17 hour burn so we will see how they do tonight.
  22. zombie*mommie

    zombie*mommie New Member

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    I wish I had found this thread and reread it before we got our ton of Liberty. We burned Envi8 and loved them. Unfortunatly, I refuse to deal with the local dealer I got them from ever again. (Long and short - trading post in NM are liars who don't fill preorders)

    We called BT Enterprises and they suggested the Liberty.

    We are gaging on the stench. My husband went running and could smell the smoke from our fire almost a 1/3 of a mile away. We are now stuck with almost a full ton of this carp and don't want to burn it.
  23. nhtodd

    nhtodd New Member

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    I hear you. I bought four ton and my stove took a beating. Many of them were fine but there were plenty that had contaminants. I will not be buying them again.
  24. toonjie

    toonjie Member

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    I would call BT and have them exchange them for the new ones they just got in. I have now been burning the new ones for almost a week and they smell fine and I can't see any contaminates in them like you could with the old ones. They also seem to last longer than the original ones. Now they don't smell as good as cord wood, but they are much better than the old ones.
  25. zombie*mommie

    zombie*mommie New Member

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    Thanks for the suggestion. I will be calling tomorrow. I have to say that so far the service and personel at BT have been really nice. Crossing my fingers that it keeps that way!
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