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Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Greg Omagh, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    No pellets are created equal. Yes raw material and density is the key to a good pellet but if they sat outside for 3 month at one retail location or sat in a warehouse for three months, you will have a different burn.

    Eric

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  2. john193

    john193 Minister of Fire

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    And what may be a good pellet one year doesn't mean it will be good next year. Sticking with the more reputable brands is a good start but it is no guarantee on quality.
  3. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    When larger mills pull from batches with 100's of tons of raw material every few tons can be different.

    Eric
  4. Harvey Schneider

    Harvey Schneider Minister of Fire

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    Density, moisture content, BTU per pound and ash content are all controlled to some extent, but the content of resins is not. I suspect that the reason soft woods and blends are so impressive is that they have higher resin content. Resins burn much faster and, therefore, hotter than cellulose.
    I agree that moisture content can make a good pellet into cat litter-box filler, but I think that choice of raw materials is important in the resulting qualities of the pellets. That begs the question; do the manufacturers know how to control those qualities, or is it mostly random luck.
  5. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    I would say that comes from where they get the dust. I know one mill that tried to get going in this area bought dust from KraftMaid. 90% of KraftMaid's dust was from pressed boards. That meant the dust came with a glue/binder. I also know another pellet maker uses mostly ground pallets. What if that pallet was soaked through with oil? Some mills use dust from their own lumber mill so they know but if you shop around for raw material you are at their mercy.

    Eric
  6. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    That all depends on the mills quality department. Some just wing it and some actually test the fiber before it even hits the conveyors.
  7. john193

    john193 Minister of Fire

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    Is there a list of these manufacturers with higher QC standards? I have noticed that every brand of pellet bag I look at from different manufacturers now has the pellet institute seal and analysis. Who conducts this analysis? Because every brand indicates under 1% ash and I keep smelling bull..
    Harvey Schneider likes this.
  8. Harvey Schneider

    Harvey Schneider Minister of Fire

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    Think of it as an insurance policy.
  9. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    But if the pellets arrive at the retail location and sit outside for a few months how does that mess with the PFI data?
  10. Harvey Schneider

    Harvey Schneider Minister of Fire

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    Another bit of information.
    Quadrafire says that the vent should be cleaned every 3 tons of pellets. I just cleaned my vent and the increase in heat is dramatic. I used to get convection air temperatures in the range of 230 to 250 degrees running in manual with flame height 4. After cleaning the flue, and especially the screen at the cap, I am seeing temperatures of 260 to 290 with the same fuel and the same settings.
    Even though I thought my stove was burning well, it wasn't performing as well as it could. I guess more frequent cleanings are in order.
  11. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    A clean stove is a happy stove.

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