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Inserts without the surrounds? pics or advice?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by tickbitty, Jan 10, 2010.

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  1. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    I am interested in information and PICS of fireplace inserts where the surrounds were not used. I know there are a few in here, drdoct has one in his signature and there was another that I saw recently and can't re-find.

    We installed our stove today with a full liner. It's a Lopi Republic 1750 insert. Decent looking, fairly plain. I had to go down to get the surround as it just came in (though we got stove last week.) Because my fireplace is quite large, I had to get the largest surround, 12" on all sides. THat means that although it will come nearly to touch the wood trim on the sides of the mantel surround, it still isn't quite tall enough to reach the top of the fireplace opening. So I will have to seal that with something (maybe the mantel shield) and there will still be brick showing above on top, but not on the sides.

    I'm not minding the way the stove looks in the fireplace without the surround at all right now and I am thinking of just skipping the surround altogether (too late to get my hundred bucks back on the surround though - oh well.)

    We did not build a block off plate for the bottom of the chimney (YET) but would using or not using the surround make any difference with heat retention or loss or draftiness from the chimney? We should probably do the block off plate regardless, but the installation manual does not show one in this type of installation so the guy installing it for me didn't do one. If I do one I am figuring I might do it in two pieces so I don't have to take the liner off the top of the stove to get it in.

    If anyone has any pics or advice for me on this let me know. I would definitely need to make a curved black thing to block the bright silver flex liner as a foot or more of it is showing at present.

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  2. Funk Brother

    Funk Brother Member

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  3. Captain Hornet

    Captain Hornet Member

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    We took our surround off when we installed our liner. We found that ours puts out a whole lot more heat without the surround and I think it looks much better also. Make sure you put in a good block off plate down at the stove end of the chimney. When you do that, there is really no reason to put the surround back in. What you have really done is turned a poor heating insert into a efficient free standing stove. David

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  4. Captain Hornet

    Captain Hornet Member

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    Second pix

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  5. gibson

    gibson New Member

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    I may be wrong on this but I believe that the Lopi inserts are actually the same as the freestanding, although without the surround.
  6. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Cool, thank you folks for responding and especially for posting the pictures. I like this idea more and more. Our fireplace looks much better without the fireplace doors that were on it before too. It's all sooty inside but I kind of like the way it looks! I really would have preferred a hearth stove but the clearances just wouldn't have worked, so I think this is near the same thing.
    Bluto, It's actually the Avalon stoves that are the same freestanding or insert, not the Lopi, but they are both made by Travis. The Lopi freestandings are step-top stoves and the inserts are not, but they aren't terrible looking or anything either so I think it makes a fair looking hearth mount. Legless, and with a blower, but it ought to crank some heat!

    Here were a couple images I found in my searching.
    This one is from this site, on the galleries pages:
    [​IMG]

    This one I found online randomly
    [​IMG]

    And I am still searching for a cool one I saw on here last night - someone who had a string of dried chili peppers hanging up on their hearth, where did it go?! Found it! (or is that Okra?!)
    [​IMG]
    (It's weird that all the ones I was able to find on my own were Lopis?) I see the ones you other folks did look nice that way too!
  7. Lburg

    Lburg Member

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    I had the same problem when I bought my Regency I2400. I had a sheet of 16 gauge steel cut to fit. It cost $50.00.

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  8. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Nice! How did you seal and/or anchor it in there? Or did you?
  9. Lburg

    Lburg Member

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    I didn't. The insert holds it in place.
  10. ce208b

    ce208b New Member

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    I just put this one in last month.

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  11. FireAnt

    FireAnt Minister of Fire

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    What stove is that ce208b?
  12. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    ce208b, that looks great! We have a pretty nice collection of these on here now in case anyone ever wants to see this kind of thing again!
  13. trouba

    trouba Member

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    Sorry I own a Lopi and according to their web site the stoves are all the same insert/hearth and free standing, same stove.
  14. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Trouba, yes, for the most part, but not exactly the same. Same firebox, mostly the same exterior too, but not exactly. In the Avalon stoves it is like the same EXACT stove, but with legs or a pedestal. With this Lopi, for example, the Republic 1750, the stove is a slight step top while the insert is not, and is made to put the surround on. Plus on the insert there is a top damper, while on the same stove, that control is somewhere else (I don't know where, on the side or something?) So even though it's the same, it's not quite the SAME same.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  15. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    The differences in person are more extreme than they appear in the diagrams above, but you get the point. As far as functionality, I do think that the insert will work pretty much similarly with or without the insert and that it will work pretty similarly to the stove. I am not sure if you could just put the stove flat on the floor with no legs, maybe you could but I don't know. (on a pad or whatever, I mean.)
  16. ce208b

    ce208b New Member

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    It's a Buck Model 74
  17. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Nice looking Buck!
  18. trouba

    trouba Member

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    I was told my Lopi Answer was the same exact same stove free standing or insert, I guess I can not speak for the rest but my owners manual shows both ways to install including putting on the legs or pedestal if its not going to be an insert.
  19. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Huh, well that would be pretty neat. The Answer is a nice compact stove so you must be right. I was looking for something a little larger, like the revere, and the republic is just the no-frills version of that. I think the Avalon Ranier is similar in size and if the stove shop I bought mine at had one of those that I could see I would have considered it, I don't like the look of the avalons quite as much but it does seem really neat that if you moved or something you could completely convert the stove.... like if I moved somewhere without a fireplace I could just get some legs and install the pipe and pad and be good to go. Seems like a great option.
  20. drdoct

    drdoct Feeling the Heat

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    Tickbitty, not sure if you decided on the surround or not, but I suggest you go ahead and do the block off plate and clean your fireplace anyway. It's not too bad to clean the fireplace. What I did was scrape and brush all the heavy places then vacuum the floor good. The brush I used was one of those nylon type scrub brushes. Then I sprayed the whole inside with easy off oven cleaner and let it sit for an hour. Then I just scrubbed it again and used paper towels (lots) to get the layer of gunk off. Then a bucket of water and scrub brush to clean it all up (could also use a spray bottle with water in it) until it's where you want it clean wise. The dirtiest part is cleaning off the easy off. After you get the blockoff plate in and notice how ugly your liner is sitting in there you can go buy a piece of 8" black stove pipe and cut it to fit over the liner. It finishes it nicely.
  21. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Haven't decided for sure about the surround or not, but if I have it my way we won't use it. Drdoct, you should put up a bigger pic of yours to go with all the others here! We will probably do the block off plate, but for now we just wanted to get it up and running, and it is! Yay! Will definitely get a pc of black pipe to cover the liner, since it's insulated and all it looks pretty giant and silver and definitely needs to be covered. Don't think I can get the fireplace all that clean without moving the stove at this point and since we just got it hooked up I am reluctant to move it now! Maybe at the end of the season. Fireplace does look blackened inside similar to a few of the ones I pasted in above, but I kind of like the way it looks and it's not loose or crumbly or anything so I don't mind letting it be for now.

    It is super cold out and we haven't noticed any draft from the chimney around the stove, (when the stove is cold) but I do think that the block off plate would eliminate some additional heat loss so it's on the list. Will have to be done in two pcs though to get it around the pipe, and after I get some insulation blanket. THanks drdoct I am happy to have (finally!!!) joined the Lopi club.
  22. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Dr.doct, what did you cut the pipe to length with, (the black pipe to hide the liner I mean) and did you secure it on the liner at all or does it just sit there?
  23. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Speaking of pictures... did I miss that post?
  24. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    Lol. Was waiting on that till the rest of my stuff comes in. Hearth extender and mantel shield are not here yet and we are doing some "make do" things in the meantime that don't look so nice. Not that my house is such a showplace anyway... but I want to have my real setup before I take pics. End of the week, I hope. I'll put it on here to go with the others!
  25. bodhran

    bodhran Member

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    I took the surround off my Regency I1200 and the difference in the heat is amazing.What a waste before. All day with the fire going I'd struggle to get 20c out of it and now with no fan on I'm hitting temps of 23-24c.
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