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One man's EKO 40 Illustrated Story - Start to Finish

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by stee6043, Jan 5, 2009.

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  1. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    NoFossil, would it be "bad" if I were to throttle my circs with the ball valves to control flow? I know to some extent it will increase velocity initially but I should reach a point where I'm decreasing flow and moderating velocity? My thoughts are to slow the main circ since my EKO is so close to the storage. I'm running 007's. I thought perhaps I'm just getting too much flow through the boiler right now. But then again, if 20 degrees is good, maybe I should just leave it alone?

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  2. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    Throttling with ball valves makes me nervous. If it were me, I'd think about how to reduce the portion of your flow that goes through storage. I don't remember what your schematic looks like, so I don't have any specific advice on how to accomplish that.

    If you want to reduce circulator flow, some folks have had success using a lamp dimmer. I'd watch temperatures like a hawk, though.
  3. seabee570

    seabee570 New Member

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    Instead of throttling the ball valves at the pumps,you could add a small bypass loop at the boiler.this can be done many ways.you can put the loop from supply to return and use a ball valve to control flow between supply and return.You could use amixing valve sensing temperature to allow 140-145 degree water tro return to the boiler thru the bypass loop.you could also use a electronic/electrical temp control and a solenoid to do the trick. this is used with cinventional hydronics.I think that it could help your boiler recover faster by returning a small amount of hotter water mixing with the colder return water...hope it helps
  4. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    Thanks, Seabee. My system does already include the appropriate mixing valve and I always run 140 on the return. My question to Nofossil was regarding reducing the flow through the boiler since my circs have such a small amount of pipe to run. I may ultimately try the dimmer approach....we shall see....
  5. taxidermist

    taxidermist Minister of Fire

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    Dont use a light dimmer use a celing fan speed control switch.

    Rob
  6. hareball

    hareball Member

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    That is one very impressive project! How much of a commitment isit to run? Do you completly shut a system down like this once heat is no longer needed during the warm months?

    That is one very cool way to harness the power of heat man!
    And I thought moving 300+ gallon aquariums around my home was a pain ha!
  7. huffdawg

    huffdawg Minister of Fire

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    Hello Stee , I will be starting a similar project to yours in the new year. " Awesome job"! I have a few questions .
    _ Does the 6" chimney pipe work fine ? I see in the manual it says 8"
    _ How much for the pallet rack and where to get them . That looks like an excellent way to stack the tanks.
    _ Do you have any detail drawings for the tank modifications ,plumbing and piping.
    _ What did you do to the inside of tanks as far as cleaning them out .


    Cheers Huff.
    .
  8. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    It takes a month or two to get a routine down, maybe even the first year depending on the quality of wood you burn. For me the time commitment is quite small. I start a fire every day (during cold weather) at 5:30-6pm. That takes 20 minutes or less. I load a half load at 7ish (5 minutes of work) and then I fill it all the way up at 9-9:30ish (another 5 minutes). So on an average day I have just over 30 minutes total into heating my home 100% from wood.

    I summerize the boiler in Spring. Quite easy...no running in the summer months for me....Thanks for your kind words, hareball.
  9. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    6" chimney works great for me, huff. Several of us EKO 40 users on this site are running 6" and I haven't heard anyone complain about it. I paid $400 or so for the pallet rack. I used Steel King racking. If you google them you can find your local distributor. I'm sure you can find cheaper rack but you want to make sure you have properly sized beams for the upper tank. She's 5,000lbs full of water and most standard pallet rack with a 10' bay opening isn't designed to support this much weight. I supported mine in the middle just in case, even though the design load was 6,000lbs+.

    I didn't modify my tanks at all. They had plenty of openings stock. All I did was add dip tubes using 1" copper. I also didn't have to clean them (other than a pretreatment) since mine were brand new. Used tanks are quite different. Search "mercaptin" on this site and you'll find some good tips....
  10. huffdawg

    huffdawg Minister of Fire

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    If you dont mind me asking what did you pay for the new tanks. I priced them out here, they are $2k a piece new or $1100 refurbished .
    I could probably get untagged tanks for $500 a piece
  11. hareball

    hareball Member

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    Wow! Can't beat that! Sometimes I feel like a slave to this old stove. One of these days I hope to get my other hearth up and running. I'll have to shoot for a project like yours in my next life haha!!
  12. mwk1000

    mwk1000 Member

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    I love the racks. Perfect place to mount the piping.

    For me it's always the wood. I have an eko 60 with 1500 gal of storage It takes a full 8 hours to get the tank close to 180. That ONLY happens with dry wood the eko pushes 185-190 and the tank charges fast. With moderately moist wood ( I really need to get a moisture meter ) the EKO will only hit 170 and the tanks get to 160 if I am lucky.

    Seems like you might have the same -- 1000 gal against and eko 40 is a lot of BTU's to transfer. I'm not sure what the 40 puts out max or real world but it sounds like you are right where you would expect to be with the burn times you are talking about. I messed with my settings quite a bit but I found that for me 50% fans, 9-10 mm 60-70% secondaries is where it stays VERY hot and long burns. IF I have dry wood. I got set up last winter and so next winter I hope I am set good for a dry wood supply. I had some massive oak trees go down this year and they will be ready next winter.
  13. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    I paid $1300 each for new tanks, with tags. Tanks can be had in the $300 ballpark around here used and untagged. The extra 2 grand was worth it for me. I didn't have the ability or patience needed to properly clean used propane tanks.
  14. razvy

    razvy New Member

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    @stee6043
    Your chimney looks nice on the house , I am going to copy your design except for the 90 I am coming out from the house I like to have a cleaning "T" .
  15. BulldogAcres

    BulldogAcres Member

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    What is the Brand name of the Temperature Gauges and where did you buy them at.
  16. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

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    Holy old post! Hah. This was my pride and joy of a thread back in the day. There is a Tee on the exit, razvy. You just can't see it and it's not easily accessible. I use the T's on the inside for cleaning....
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