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Lopi Declaration vs Jotul C550 Rockland?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Riggs, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. Riggs

    Riggs Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    91
    Loc:
    Eastern PA
    Note: I'm now between the Vermont Castings Merrimack and the Jotul c550 rockland, With the Lopi following up a close 3rd.


    hi guys, i've been lurking around here for quite some time now and i've read through just about everything. i must say this forum is a deep ocean of information..it's really quite impressive! what i'm looking for are some opinions on these two stoves. Parts costs are said to be high for the VC which is a concern if they need them more often than not. The Jotul looks and sounds great and of course the wife loves it the most. And the Lopi just looks like a really well made stove and everyone seems to say the it outa ton of heat.

    I'm looking for the best combination of heat/burn times/solid built in the stove.

    i'm stuck between a Lopi Declaration & Jotul C550 Rockland. i've read a enough threads about the jotul to know that it seems a little more tough to get to run well...but as the same time there are a lot of threads dedicated to how much some people love it. but i haven't been able to find a lot of info on the Lopi..so i'm hoping you guys can help me decide.

    this insert is going into my living room...it's going to serve as a secondary heat source for my downstairs. the living room is where this will be located...and the kitchen is right next to it. it's a very open floorplan for the downstairs so it should serve the purpose well based on sq/ft of the downstairs

    i'm not looking to help keep heating costs down with this stove but it is not serving as a whole house heater by any means. i have an endless supply of free hardwoods and i love cutting/splitting...and who doesn't love a fire to watch!

    so anyway....many thanks in advance...please let me know your opinions?

    and if i've missed anything let me know and i'll answer any quesitons

    thanks,

    Riggs

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  2. jkahn

    jkahn Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    eastern PA
    I have had the Lopi Declaration in my living room for 2 years now. It's a pretty nice unit, well made and easy to install. The glass door makes it a pleasure to watch. The living room is about 1,000 ft2 with 10 foot ceilings moderately insulated older house.
    On all but the coldest days, 0 degrees in Pennsylvania, it heats quite well and also keeps the adjoining kitchen comfortable. The stove is simple to light and control. It does take a while to get up to heat until the fan kicks in 20 to 30 min. When the fan turns on it takes the noise level from 60 db. no fan, to 70 db fan on 3/4, to 75 db fan on full, we generally run at 3/4 fan. We burn 2 to 3 ft3. in a 7 hour evening. This insert replaced a Volcano Supreme insert that seemed to burn a little cleaner but did not put out nearly as much heat. I'm happy with this choice and intend to keep it around for a while. Good luck with heater.
  3. Riggs

    Riggs Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    91
    Loc:
    Eastern PA
    hi jkahn,

    thnaks for the feedback....i really like the Lopi and it was a firm contender but after this weekend i'm down to the VD Merrimack and the Jotul C550 Rockland. i took my wife along and while she didn't dislike the Lopi...she really enjoy the look of the Merrimack and was of course in love with the Jotul. i'm sort of between those two right now and i'm back and forth over a few things. one is burn times and the other is heat, and lastly noise. i've been reading up on the Merrimack and it seems that a lot of people have had issues with the noise from the fans and i can't seem to find if there was a solid fix for that or if it's just the way it is. burn times...just seems like people get 10 hours on average out of the Merrimack and about 5-6 out of the Jotul at best. also...i have read up and on all the serive issues and around here...the one big VC dealer has a very bad reputation with service...and the Jotul dealer 4 miles from my house is looking really superb..so that's a biggie. i'm just torn...so many decideing factors and i'm just lost in all these info.
  4. Ansky

    Ansky Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2013
    Messages:
    109
    Loc:
    central CT
    So what did you decide? I have definitely done better than 5-6 hours with the jotul. But it all depends on the wood I'm burning. Good wood = longer burn times. Simple as that. Just this morning after a 7.5 hr burn, I came downstairs to a ton of hot coals and even a little flame that was left. Plus the fan was still on and it was throwing a lot of heat. But other mornings after I packed the stove with less than quality wood, I came down to a cold stove after 6 hours. So, you get out of it what you put into it. Literally. :)
  5. Riggs

    Riggs Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    91
    Loc:
    Eastern PA
    went with the jotul 550....best price and install from a really reputable guy in the area. he was the one and only guy in the area that didn't try to BS me about something and when i asked him questions i didn't know the answer to...he was honest about it and gave it to me straight. i've got a guy locally that will deliver 2 year seasoned wood for a good price and i've got a lot sitting around that will be ready for this stove so it'll all be minimum 2 year old wood.

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