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Heat Output: cat vs. non-cat

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by 4barrel, Feb 24, 2013.

  1. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    Be Green, Poiint taken. My statement was a generalization. However, in the main, it is correct.

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  2. 4barrel

    4barrel New Member

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    My fireplace is to short height wise and too shallow depth wise. I bought this Olympic because it was the only model that would fit in the fireplace. I wanted to buy a Pacific energy but they would not fit. I don't even know if a fireplace can be reworked like this, that is be made taller and deeper.Any masoners out there? I would like to go with a freestanding stove this time.
  3. Hickorynut

    Hickorynut Burning Hunk

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    4barrell, I feel your pain. I am getting the same poor results with my lopi freedom. Maximum of three to four hour burn times with a load of quality wood. I think they let too much air into the stove with the damper closed plus I do have a strong draft. Also, I get dirty glass almost after every burn cycle. Setting the alarm once, more often twice getting up to reload sucks big time. I say dump the lopi and don't look back.
  4. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

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    Can you just extend the hearth and put a freestander in front of the fireplace? Also, where do you live? Climate may play a patrt in what stove is best for you. I would personally go with a hybrid for my next stove but I do love my Princess.
  5. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Dirty glass may indicate burning too low of tamps and not dry enough wood.
    If we all only got some dollars for everyone that is so certain their wood is quality, when it really is not.
    Setting off alarms is truly not good, and downright dangerous.
    raybonz and Treacherous like this.
  6. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    I have a smoke dragon... and I get 6 hours out of my free Better 'N Bens... if I load that sumb**ch up.... unless it's -15F out... I just blast myself out of the house...
  7. mellow

    mellow Resident Stove Connoisseur

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    Go freestanding with a rear vent exit, plenty of them out there to choose from.
  8. 4barrel

    4barrel New Member

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    Hickorynut, you know what i am talking about. The stove works good don't get me wrong, lots of heat, great convection system, but the burn times are driving me crazy. I think you're about the air inlet, it blows air directly over the wood. I read somewhere on this site that Pacific energy stoves curculate air around the firebox instead. Sounds like a better way of doing it. Any bricklayers out there, is it possible to increase the size of a existing fireplace.
  9. 4barrel

    4barrel New Member

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    Weatherguy, I wish I could. The main problem I have is the depth of the fireplace is to shallow, only about 14 inches.I live in MA like you.
  10. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    Of course it is possible. Is it worth the cost? I removed the masonry fireplace and chimney in my home to install a regular freestanding stove and vertical flue. Any work on a fireplace is polishing a turd.
  11. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    Do you have an old home? Is that a Rumford fireplace?
  12. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    He's setting the alarm to wake up and reload.....
  13. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    I did the same thing. Shoulda done it years ago.
  14. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Same here. It was a two day, dirty process, but I am glad I did it. In earthquake country old masonry chimneys are a liability.
  15. dyerkutn

    dyerkutn Feeling the Heat

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    Hopefully someone is still reading this thread. I am confused about cats being able to go low and slow and non-cats hard to slow down. The dealers I have visited have said that if you want to slow the fire down ( in a non-cat) you just put in less wood or close the air more. Is that not true? I currently have a very old cat stove and have been worrying that it would be hard to switch as I am know how to manage it pretty well,
  16. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    Sure you can always put in less wood, but you also wont get a long burn time. Cats allow you to stuff it full and also get that long burn time, something a non-cat simply can't do, in comparison.
    Joful and HotCoals like this.
  17. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    A cat will burn the smoke and the volatile gases produced by combustion at a much lower temperature than a non cat, so it will produce heat cleanly at a low temperature. Non cat stoves cannot burn those gases until the stove is much hotter, so produce a dirty burn until they get to a high temperature, and the potential heat of the smoke and gases is lost up the chimney until they do reach a high temperature. They burn wood getting to the high temperature, and burn wood faster at the higher temperature. The cat stoves can cruise along with little or no no flame emanating from the wood while they burn the smoke and gases, producing significant heat. The wood is very slowly consumed while they do this, because there is very little oxygen in the fire box. A non-cat simply cannot do that. It will smoulder and create creosote and not heat, if you try to do it. You can adjust heat output of a non cat, just like you can of a cat, by load size and split size, but you canot adjust air down as you can in a cat, so simply cannot produce as slow burnign a fire as you can in a cat and still produce meaningful heat, or produce heat cleanly. Cats are inherently more efficient than non cats. If you are used to using a cat, I cannot see any reason you would consider switching to a non-cat stove.
  18. ddddddden

    ddddddden Minister of Fire

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    It's a matter of degree, but if the dealers are leading you to believe that you can close down a non-cat like your cat stove, that is not true. Below a certain point, you can't "close the air more" on a non-cat stove, if not for technical reasons, then because the EPA says you can't.

    http://www.gulland.ca/florida_bungalow_syndrome.htm
  19. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    I have a PE Alderlea T-5 with the exact same firebox and I get 10-12 hr. burns all the time.. I only expected and sought to get 8 hr. burns so I was pleasantly surprised with the longer burns. I live in SE Mass. and heat about the same size home as you.

    Ray
  20. dyerkutn

    dyerkutn Feeling the Heat

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    That article is way too technical for me. Besides the Woodstocks and Majestics, what other good cat stoves are on the market (Blaze King is out of the questions--no dealers anywhere near me)
  21. Locust Post

    Locust Post Minister of Fire

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    I just purchased a Buck 91 cat have yet to find any bad reviews on them ....might look to see if any dealers in your area.
  22. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

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    You're getting burn times in the 10-12 hour range with a stove top of 350+ 12 hour in? That's pretty good!
  23. dyerkutn

    dyerkutn Feeling the Heat

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    Another brand!! They seem to be unending. According to the Buck website the dealer around here is a place I was planning on visiting Thurs--not too far from me.
  24. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    Honestly I don't look at stovetop temp what I get is a warm stove with blower still running and plenty of coals for relight.. This stove is rated over 80% efficient and the burn times agree with this. I consider this good for any 2 cu. ft. stove..

    Ray
    ddddddden likes this.
  25. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

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    My Endeavor was 2.2 and I could relight after 10-12 hour with no issue but useful heat was long gone at that point even if the blower was still running. If you get bored sometime take a stove top temp reading at reload. I'd be curious to know what the temp was 12 hours in.

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