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How to tame the Beast (30-NC)????

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by herdbull, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. herdbull

    herdbull Member

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    So far, so good with the new stove. I installed it about a month or so ago and it is getting used as required. The true test won't come until next fall but I have a question on how to tame this thing down. I will say this, I'm not used to the echo...echo...echo.... when I open the door :) and peer in.

    I'll run through last nights scenario just to give you all an idea of how she's burning. Yes, it's a she but I haven't picked out a name yet. Might need help with that too.

    8:15 pm: started the typical fire. Burned on medium to low with some smaller splits to get a few coals in her before bed time.

    9:50 pm: loaded up (N/S) with about what I would call a half load of medium sized mixed splits. It was dry but not oak or locust. Left the air turned down for an overnight burn. Stove top around 400*.

    10:00 pm: she's ignited and ready for take-off!

    10:10 pm: full take-off achieved, all secondaries burning like a ***** ape. Temps jump to 700*.

    10:15 pm: she's hovering between 750*-775* with a screaming freight train of fire from front to back in the top 6" of the stove. This goes on until 11:30 pm when she finally drops back to 700*. I head to bed.

    5:30 am: not much left this morning, stove is at 200*. It would probably start a new fire without much work but that is not needed today. Kind of mixed feelings on the burn times. My little Napoleon 1101 was burning longer with a more controlled burn. This thing just seems to take right off even with the air chit down (shrug).

    I am a little hesitant to load her up with some good oak come this fall. I really don't want to see 800*-850* when I'm not here or at night when I'm sleeping.

    How can I tame this thing? I'll do the dollar bill test again later when she's totally cooled down but it was sealed great when I put it in. It just seems it needs to be choked down a little more than it is or I'll never see the burn times it is capable of producing. Any thoughts?

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  2. GAMMA RAY

    GAMMA RAY Minister of Fire

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    I don't reload until the stove top temps are lower. Loading at 400 on a hot coal bed is gonna send it off to the races in no time.
    I start turning the air down in increments when the stove top gets to about 450-500.
    When your burning at temps of 700 you are not gonna get long burn times.
    It will take you awhile to figure things out. I love my 30 but it does take a bit to get used to.
    You will learn to control it.
  3. GetWoodGone

    GetWoodGone Member

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    Loc:
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    Love my 30 also. Installed this winter and yes she is a she. Seems like all the manly names such as Chief and Beast were already spoken for. Affectionately call her Daisy. Comes from the childhood game of pulling the petals off the daisy. She loves me, she loves me not...... The first night she loved me, the second night not not and so on and so on. The learning curve was longer than I anticipated. I had been a reader of the forum for several years before the purchase and knew there would be some unknowns. Nothing works like first hand experience. Well Daisy loves me now.

    I agree with Gamma Ray. Load her up when the temp is down around 200-250, Start easing off the throttle around 450. A name will come to you to describe her temperament! Ha. Let us know what you christen her.
  4. herdbull

    herdbull Member

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    That's the weird thing though.... the coal bed was minimal at best after only a couple splits and less than 2 hours of burn time on a totally cold stove. When I loaded it up or half way up the air was completely shut down already. No backing it off as she warmed up

    I have done smaller reloads at 250* and it does the same thing. Hence learning to have the air completely shut down ahead of time. I totally agree about burn times or not achieving longer burns when temps cruise to 750+. I'd love to see it sit and cruise around 600* for hours on end with a full load and not take off like a rocket ship.

    The real bummer was I had to open windows at 10:30 pm because it was 50 degrees outside - lol. But dang it right to heck if I was turnin on the ole fuel guzzler in the basement!!
  5. GAMMA RAY

    GAMMA RAY Minister of Fire

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    I find the "sweet spot" for the air inlet is to have the end of the spring even with the ash lip (more or less). I don't ever shut it completely. I like to have some flames bouncing off the splits and not just doing the secondary "action."
    If it is 40-50 degrees outside at night...we don't burn because it just gets too darned hot. I like it hot but when it puts you into a "coma type" state...no good.
    Pen has the 30 for several years and he says he is still learning.

    You might want to try the cigar burn...rake all coals forward. By doing this the wood will not out gass all at once. It will burn from front to back and cruise at about 500-550 for a good amount of time...that would be if you are loading n/s. I have not tried e/w yet in the 30.
    The 30 is a mean heating machine...:ZZZ;lol
  6. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Yeah if you are burning N/S then drag your coal bed forward and just put the front end of the splits on the coals. And as Gamma said "cigar burn" the load from front to back. Personally after burning all N/S in the stove for six seasons I went to all E/W loading doing the same thing with pulling the coal bed forward this year. Like it a lot more. Long burns with lots of nice flames and none of the drama of an out of control N/S load. It takes some practice and not as easy at first to get a burn going but it is the way the stove was designed to burn. And it does it well.
    Ryan Clark likes this.
  7. bluedogz

    bluedogz Minister of Fire

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    This almost exactly describes my runaround... back and forth, too much air... too little air... whoops, too much again...

    Finally getting into the swing of it. 'Course, now it's April. :confused:
  8. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    Shut it down sooner..... Load on lower temps...... Load it up if you want a Looong burn.

    A half full box is only 1.75 cu ft. A full box 3.5 cu ft will give a Much Longer burn.

    All good things posted above.... It takes time. I had a full season this year (Oct install) and I will still learn next year. As my Wood will be 2 seasons old instead of some from April and some from the year prior. All good wood this year. And will get better every year after this.....

    Next year will be 3 yr seasoned wood! !!

    Dry wood, load on low temp, and shut down early.. Otherwise. This stove becomes a Nuclear Black Box that becomes uncontrollable.
  9. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    So do yu see the same stove top temps (more or less) as the N/S loading, I assume my Summit was designed the same way, I am going to try the E/W loading like you talked about.
  10. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    If I do it right I see lower stove top temps with E/W.
  11. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    After being told my whuffing problem was the result of shutting down the air control too soon on a large load, before it completely charred over, I'm wondering how you get away with loading the stove and keeping the air control low from the beginning. Is this something unique to the NC30, or am I just missing something?

    Referenced thread: http://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/whuffing.85739/
  12. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    I think whuffing is also the result of a marginal draft, in this house with the two chimneys and two stoves I've had I have never had a whuffing issue not one no matter how I run the stove, in my old house with a poorer draft I had to be more careful.
  13. herdbull

    herdbull Member

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    Could be something with the 30 (dunno)?? My conditions are with the air completely shut down from the start of the load. For me there is no backing off of the air as it gets hotter. It's already backed off as far as it goes. On low it might just let more air in than I was accustomed to on the 1101. I'm just afraid a full load is gonna take off just as bad and run hotter yet.

    With the air shut down completely I still get significant flame from the air inlet. typically 2"-3" wide about 16" deep into the stove. I'd love to shut it down more but I can't. I guess for now it's wait and see, wait and see what next fall brings. I have noticed that when I load this up half way I'm using more wood that a full load in the 1101, but I'm not getting near the burn times. Makes me scratch me head and think this stove will just run hotter and go through wood quicker unless I can find a way to shut it down more.
  14. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    Could something be wrong with the Primary control and the plate its hooked to?.

    Have you looked in the main inlet and seen how far it closes?

    How tall is your chimney? Is it Class A ( inside or outside house) or a liner?
  15. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Maybe the draft is so strong that you have too much secondary air? Might need to experiment w/ blocking a bit of the secondary air.

    Another quick test could be to block the dog house air. Use a bolt in it and pack a bunch of ash around it, or use a dab of furnace cement on a piece of firebrick and see how things go, really use whatever you can come up w/ to restrict it for testing.

    pen
  16. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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  17. astrodon

    astrodon Member

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    Wow, there is absolutely no way my 30 would start like that with the air closed down and the door closed. Not to sound like an a-hole, but are you sure you don't have the air all the way open? All the way out is open and all the way in is closed. If in fact you have the air control pushed all the way in, is the ash plug (inside the firebox, on the bottom in front) properly seated? I just cant imagine starting that way on a minimal coal bed as you described:confused:
  18. herdbull

    herdbull Member

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    Don't worry about sounding like an a-hole. And yes, it's pushed all the way in, the ash dump plug was the first thing I checked and everything is sealed up tight. You can definitely tell the air is coming from the dog house via the flame.

    The chimney is a 6" liner, roughly 20' and all but about 5' of it are inside the house. It's a 16' vaulted ceiling with a massive brick FP in the middle of the house.

    Thanks Bart, that's a good read. I think I know what I need to do.
  19. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    The doghouse air is unrestricted. It isn't controlled by the primary air control. The air for it enters through holes in the bottom of the firebox behind each of the front legs. Magnets fit over one or both of them real easy.
    Ryan Clark likes this.
  20. DaveGunter

    DaveGunter Member

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    As a newbie to EPA stoves with a 30-nc, I'd love to hear exactly where all the combustion air comes from outside of this stove and where it goes to inside this stove.

    The 3" inlet, controlled by the slider supplies air to the stove how?

    The smaller rectangle hole above and to the rear of the 3" inlet, with no control, is for the secondaries only?

    Air holes behind the front legs? Mine is on the pedestal are these holes covered?
  21. blades

    blades Minister of Fire

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    No they are not cut off by the pedestal. It is possible that your draft is greater than some others so you may need a damper for your flue. When I shove my control all the way towards the fire box I can see the air jet diminish from the dog house on the coals and flames. It is possible that your control plate is out of kilter. I have heard of it once or twice before. I get the hebee jeebeies when i hit the 700 + bracket course I had a different stove go ballistic a number of years ago haven't gotten over that yet. It is very exciting(?) when the double wall black flue pipe is glowing dull red from the top of the stove to the ceiling,in a mfg home of 1980's vintage.
  22. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    The 3" hole is the Primary air control. This is also your air wash. This only comes in from the area at the top of the glass.

    The square/rectangular hole near it, is the secondary air inlet. It is unregulated. Unless you manually cover it.

    The 2 small square holes on the bottom front are also unregulated. Thats the Doghouse air. The Doghouse may seem to slow down when the Primary is closed, but it has no effect on it. Only way to regulate this air, is manually (some here use magnets).
  23. herdbull

    herdbull Member

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    Thanks guys, this is all good information. I'm still playin around with getting longer burns times out of this stove but the temps just seem to want to climb to 750 pretty easy and often. I guess 750 isn't all that hot for this stove and it hasn't ever really inched much over that. Right now it's not so convenient but give it another 2 months and I'll be lovin it!
  24. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Did you ever try magnets over the doghouse air holes to restrict that? Another thought might be to consider an inline damper.

    750 is a hot stove, but not worrisome to me. Once we start getting over the 800-850 mark, then I start considering using the flue damper.

    Even in the coldest weather, with the stove top hitting 750 to 800 on a load, I can go 12-14 hours between reloads and still have coals to easily relight the next load. If I try putting more than 2.5 loads through the stove in a day (without opening the air up later in the burn to get the coals to burn down quicker) I'll be fighting with excessive coals.

    pen
  25. Ryan Clark

    Ryan Clark New Member

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    Being a new 30 user this year, I have been on a steep learning curve. I read all the info you guys post and try to see what parts affect me most. I also live in area where the wind blows incessantly! So knowing that, i have a flue damper at my disposal. Will this aid me on burns or just keep the stove pulled back when it is very windy?

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