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Lopi vs Quadrafire insert?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by mdefries, Nov 2, 2006.

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  1. mdefries

    mdefries New Member

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    Loc:
    Boulder, CO
    Hello, fellow stove lovers. After months of enjoying the discussions on this site, and hemming and hawing over whether to put a wood burning insert into our fireplace, my wife and I are ready to make the investment.

    So many great looking inserts out there! We really like the Lopi Declaration (flush look), but, in the end, may take the alternate approach and go with a stove with a front bay on it.

    With that said, I am confused about the actual difference between the Lopi Freedom Bay and the Quadrafire 5100i. These two inserts seem very similar. yet, according to the Lopi's info, the Freedom Bay will heat from 1200-2250 sq; Quadrafire says it's 5100i heats "up to 3500 sq feet". These stoves have the same size fire box, and essentially the same dimensions. Am I missing something here -- or is the Quadrafire somehow heating more because of better design?

    Thanks, in advance for your thoughts!

    Mike

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  2. brian_in_idaho

    brian_in_idaho New Member

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    I had a 5100i, in new construction ('96 when I built), 1800 SF house. It was no more than adequate for this size house, I think they're dreaming on 3500, at least with western wood (fir/larch). Claims on this insert are awfully optomistic, they rate about the same heat output as the most comparable free-standing model IIRC, I suspect they don't "de-rate" for the losses behind the surround. If the firebox size and overall package size of the Lopi were comparable, I don't think you'd see a real world difference in heat output.

    The 5100i is a very good stoves, I can't knock it. A couple of observations, the bay windows, forget about seeing the fire through them, they aren't airwashed and soot up with the first fire. The main door stays quite clean though, the airwash does work well. A small issue is the wire handles, if you are careless, you can get burned with them. If I were doing it over I would have gone Lopi, they had a couple nice features, but I don't recall which model. They use the "ceramic" (ok, its different, and denser) firebrick, the Quad uses the "pummice" ones, they don't hold up all that well. Also, I believe the Lopi, or some Lopi's, meet EPA without the rockwool blanket over the secondary burn baffel. THis is a good thing, you usually destroy the blanket when you remove it to clean the chimney.

    Both are top notch, I wouldn't let manufacturs ratings on house size scare you off. I just checked the 2 web sites, the maximum BTU output is identical.

    Bri

    BTW, if you have seen them you already know this, but the "bay windows" on the Lopi aren't windows, they are vents for air flow. The Quads are real windows, but like I said, you probably won't see anything through them anyway.
  3. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    We had the Lopi Freedom Bay installed this year and so far really like it. Our house is about 2300 sq ft. ranch, with an interior chimney. THe stove does a good job at heating the majority of the house. We do use fans to push the air and that seems to really help. Our intent is to use the stove in the evening, let it burn out overnight, and on weekends. Although we have not had terribly cold weather yet (it is in the high 20's now) I have been impressed with the amount of heat generated by the Lopi. Don't know anything about the quadrafire, but if you choose the Lopi you will enjoy it. I'm not sure what the rockwool blanket referred to is, however, it's not on the Lopi.

    Shawn
  4. Shane

    Shane Minister of Fire

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    I'd go with the company that gives a more real world heating capacity, but I'm severly biased.
  5. brian_in_idaho

    brian_in_idaho New Member

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    Glad to hear the Lopi is working out so well. On my stove there was a layer of firebrick, supported by steel angle, that goes over the secondary burn tubes. They make up the "baffel" and provide the combustion path for secondary burn to take place above them. The rockwool blaknet sits on top of these bricks. It is my understanding that this is additional insulation that helps the stove keep firebox temperatures high enough to enhance clean burning and meet EPA requirements. After it's been exposed to combustion gasses and temperatures for a year or more, its very delicate, its hard to remove without tearing it.

    Have you cleaned your chimney yet? What is involved with the Lopi? On mine, I used to pull the secondary burn tubes, baffel firebrick and the blanket, then sweep down into the stove. Thats when I ran into the issue with the blanket. It's not that big a deal, I'd just buy the blanket material ahead of time and have it available, but it would be nice to avoid the issue all together.

    Bri
  6. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    If the fireboxes are the same size, I would in general consider them similar in heating capacity. Use other features and information - like the dealer reputation, the price, the style, etc. to make your decision.
  7. Gary of LG

    Gary of LG New Member

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    I'm no expert on inserts, but I recently was told by an experienced dealerto consider maintainence requirements and baffle tube replacements. He claimed that in his experience over time the baffle tubes may need to be replaced and it can be very difficult. He also mentioned that cleaning an insert with tubes can also be difficult. He showed me a Pacific Energy insert that uses a 304 stainless steel baffle plate that not only easily removes to permit easy maintainence, but can quickly be replaced should it ever fail. It has a lifetime warranty too.

    That's all I know.
  8. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    I swear ........it wasn't me and i didn't sign up as a different user under Gary of LG ! lol

    :cheese:

    maybe somebody is trying to squeeze in on my commission checks ???? :lol:
  9. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Holy crap! this forum is not big enough for 2 PE supporters.
    In one corner is roo& spike on the defensive, while new commer, gary wearing flaming red trunks, occupies the other corner
    here is the Bell. Spike is comming out tenative appoligising. Roo manning his corner, is barking out encourgement
    Spike go for it, this guy is stealing your thunder, he has invaded your turf no time to be defensive. hey Ref you blind! spike just took a low blow
    Folks this could be a clasic knock down drag out fight. Wait! Spike is back up, roo wispered some encourgement in spikes ear.
    now this is the spike we all know and remember. That stinging jab had some extra zip or ETB in it.
    We all knew spike would finally come out swinging. Nobody cuts into my commission checks and invades my teritiory.
    Gary is back peddling Spike has found that secondary air. I mean he is hot, I see flames comming out of this ears. And this was just round one poor Gary was saved by the bell
  10. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    LMAO Hey ole' ELKer ........ you and ole' BB been hanging on the phone or ya'llz been filling each others PM box up.

    Classic ole' ELKer , just classic. :lol:
  11. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    BTW , We still have Willhounds commission check in the picture and also Gunner is fighting for his check too with his new to be PE “Black Beauty” thats on order.
  12. Gunner

    Gunner New Member

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    :snake:
  13. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    SEE!? what di' tell ya. He sniffed out the thread.
  14. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    You might like to read this post for stove size information and how to compare two different stoves of the same size firebox rated at different BTUs.

    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/4202/

    http://pods.dasnr.okstate.edu/docushare/dsweb/Get/Document-2509/F-9432web.pdf
  15. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    Lopi Freedom Bay:

    Heating Capacity: 1,200 to 2,250 square feet
    Firebox Size: 3.1 Cubic Feet
    Weight: 470 Lbs.


    Quadra-Fire 5100i :

    Heating Capacity:up to 3,500
    Firebox Size: 3.1 cubic feet
    Weight: 540 lbs.

    I myself think 3500 sf is a bit of a stretch tho
  16. mdefries

    mdefries New Member

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    Loc:
    Boulder, CO
    Thank you for your responses.
    We have ordered a Lopi Declaration, which won because of its flush fit.

    We'll post pictures!

    Now, if I could get some of that great northeast, southeast or midwest hardwood out here to Colorado.....

    Thanks again,
    Mike
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