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Help! What do these dials do? 2 dials on a new EPA stove...

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Swedishchef, Sep 26, 2013.

  1. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    A good friend of mine just had a Newmac NS220E installed in his house.

    The front has a Burn Rate dial and a Thermostat dial. What do these do and what do they control? I have never seen a thermostat dial (heard about them on BK...but aren't they the same as a primary air control?) 2 dials...one stove??

    I know these stoves also allow to adjust the secondary air on the back but what do the ones on the front do?

    The manual doesn't clearly indicate anything...

    Thanks

    Andrew

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  2. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    Unusual stove there.

    Yes, Blaze kings have a thermostat (as do VC, though the VC system doesn't work quite as reliably as BK). In both BK and VC the primary air level is attached to a bimetallic coil which is in turn attached to the primary air inlet valve. Once set where you want it, what happens is that if the fire heats up the coil will close the air flap a bit slowing down the fire, or if the fire cools off the coil will open the air flap to speed things up. The idea is to be able to keep a consistent stove temp throughout most of the cycle without having to manually adjust the draft as the load burns down.


    Now if I read that manual you posted they tried to accomplish something like that on this stove by having two primary air inlets, one controlled by a traditional valve, and the other thermostatic. Seems like unnecessary complexity to me.
    Oldhippie likes this.
  3. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Thanks Jeremy. That is what I thought the bi-metallic coil did...

    I wanted to make sure I wasn't reading the manual improperly. Sounds complex indeed.

    My buddy is trying to reach the company and has left a voicemail but I figured I would check in with the pros on this forum first.
  4. KaptJaq

    KaptJaq Minister of Fire

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    Did you see the information on the bottom of page 10 and page 11 of the manual you listed the link for? It provides a pretty good explanation of the controls and their purpose...

    KaptJaq
  5. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Timer operated secondary, that is unusual.
  6. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    KaptJaq: I did read the manual. But I don't understand why there are 2 knobs for primary air control. And since it is the case, what is the relation and how do they work in sync?

    "PRIMARY AIR starts the fire. Opening or closing this air supply then regulates how fast the stove will burn. Primary air is supplied by the following: a dial with settings for burn rates and a thermostat. Use the Primary Air Control (PAC) dial

    (on right) to control the burn. Adjust the settings to obtain the desired heat output. Always start a fire with the PAC set on high and leave it on high until the secondary flames continue to burn after the PAC has been adjusted to a lower
    setting. Reset the PAC to high when reloading. The thermostat also controls the amount of primary air entering the unit. Set it on “Open” when starting a fire and leave
    it on “Open” until the stove has been burning long enough to keep the secondary flames burning when it is closed. Set the thermostat on “Open” for 10 to 20 minutes when reloading."
  7. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Is that a good thing or a bad thing?? lol
  8. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    That depends. This sounds like a stove for fire geeks. Good for some but my wife would hate it.
  9. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Yeah I agree, not very user friendly. Nor the prettiest.
  10. Hardrockmaple

    Hardrockmaple Feeling the Heat

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    I just replaced the older version (non EPA) Newmac with a Drolet Austral. I used that stove for 25 years in my basement and a neighbor took it for his shop it was in that good shape. I looked at the EPA version but decided it seemed overly complicated for me to go with. These stoves are manufactured an hours drive from where I sit typing now. I had great luck when calling their office as the very helpful gal who answered the phone willingly gave me the phone number of the engineer who designed the new and the old stove. His knowledge of wood burning is awesome and was very willing to talk.

    I hope your friend has the same good luck. Btw., the Newmac was a great wood heater, not pretty and gobbled wood but was fantastic to use. It never cost me a penny over those 25 years.
    Oldhippie likes this.
  11. KaptJaq

    KaptJaq Minister of Fire

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    The way I read the manual the "Burn Rate Dial" (on the right) lets a fixed amount of air onto the stove. By picking a setting on this dial you can adjust from LOW to HIGH burn rates.

    The Thermostat Knob will adjust the air to maintain the burn rate. If the stove cools the bi-metal will let more air in, if it warms it will reduce the amount of air.

    It will take some testing to see exactly where the knobs should be set for your situation. First leave the thermostat open and determine what level fire you need with the burn control knob. Warmer days towards low, colder days a little higher. Once the first knob is set then adjust the thermostat to keep the secondaries burning at that level. As fuel is used and the stove cools it should open the air supply. If the stove starts to heat up it should close down a little...

    On most stoves with bi-metal controls these two knobs are combined into one. The bi-metal controlled air supply is not allowed to close all the way thus providing a minimum amount of air to keep the fire going...

    Try a couple of fires then come back with questions...

    KaptJaq
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2013
  12. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    As a mechanical engineer, Id also say not a very elegant solution. Unecessary complexity often leads to unnecessary failures.
    Swedishchef likes this.
  13. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    KISS usually works in general: engineering or life :D

    Thanks for the information Hardrockmaple. The problem is the old Newmacs worked well. These new ones are fancy. HOw do you like the Drolet? There's a representative from SBI who make Drolet on this website (if you ever have questions he can answer them). And where do you live? I have relatives down that way....

    Andrew
  14. Hardrockmaple

    Hardrockmaple Feeling the Heat

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    re: Drolet too soon to tell, I won't fire it up 'til it gets cold. I live in the Annapolis Valley. Oh and, I never thought of the Newmac as a problem.
  15. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    I didn't meant Newmacs were problems, I meant it as in they are attempting to make something that works to work better and sometimes that complicates things.
  16. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Looks like a stove an engineer would love and his wife would hate.
    Swedishchef likes this.
  17. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Horizontal and vertical hold? ;) :)
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  18. KaptJaq

    KaptJaq Minister of Fire

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    Does your television also have a 6" round screen that only shows black & white pictures? I don't think anybody born in the last 50 years has any idea what horizontal and vertical hold knobs are![​IMG] (Unless they are the original Twilight Zone fans)

    KaptJaq
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2013
  19. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Hehheh . . . I figured there were a few "old timers" who would get this reference and other folks would have no clue. I actually grew up in the 1970s with TVs that had the vertical and horizontal knobs -- I think one of them was actually color . . . even came in a cheesy looking faux wood (plastic) set up with attached, hinged doors that you could close when the TV was not in use so that it would look like furniture . . . if furniture had rabbit ear antennas sticking out the back.
  20. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    Hey I remember the vertical hold knob in the 80s.... Even early 90s I think. Along with the big remote control to steer the Yagi up on the roof ;)
  21. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    I am 33 years old. I only remember getting up to turn a dial if I wanted to change the channel and rabbit ears. The rest is beyond my years. ;)
  22. WES999

    WES999 Minister of Fire

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    Here is a YT video explaining how the stove works.
    Interesting, the stove actually has 3 controls.
    A typical primary air control, a bi-metal primary air control and a timer to close the secondary air, to extend the coal bed,
    Swedishchef, ddddddden and begreen like this.
  23. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Now that is one thing I didn't think the small company had: a video. KA-CHING. Sold. Thanks! lol Now I will send it to my buddy with the stove.

    Yes it has 3 controls, one of them is in the back for secondaries.

    Thanks Wes!

    Andrew

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