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PE Pacific Insert Not Bullet-Proof

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Hogwildz, Aug 18, 2009.

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  1. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    A new thread would be better but I don't think such a poll really says much. Those without issues are less likely to make it to the forum....as you can imagine, those who do have issues might be googling "bad weld Pacific Energy" or something like that and end up here.

    That said, it should be noted that I sold hundreds, if not thousands, of Avalon wood stoves and don't remember repairing one weld......certainly never heard anything within a year or two.....so it could be assumed that anything which is reported a few times has some validity to it.

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  2. Wacky1

    Wacky1 New Member

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    I think that they are seriously looking at this problem and it does take time to decide which is the best course of action in this situation. I am sure they are speaking to their engineers and fabricators to see what just went wrong.. Could be as simple as a bad lot of welding wire or rods. Lack of penetration or the opposite for that matter. The metal could be weaker than it supposed to be. But whatever the case, I dont believe PE is going to tell everyone to go "pound sand" ..so to speak. PE does not have the reputation they do, for not doing good business..
  3. Csmith

    Csmith New Member

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    Need to take a photography class, but these give the general idea

    these two are of the outside , to the left and right of the door near the top

    Attached Files:

  4. Csmith

    Csmith New Member

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    have to click on the door jam pic to see the close up to actually see the crack

    Attached Files:

  5. pilot-werx

    pilot-werx Member

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    Correct, I would not accept a repaired stove. Comparing a car to a woodstove is really not relative. You are comparing a welded steel box to a machine. But I will tell you that if driving down the road and the frame of my new car started to develop cracks, I would not take anything less than a new car, or if they wanted to go through the trouble, a new frame. Same with the stove, I would not accept anything less than a new fire box....
  6. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Out of curiosity, what brand & model stove do you own?
    Ad you have a right to your own view & opinion, I respect that. Whether you would get a new firebox or not , who knows.
    With the amount of these starting to surface, it may go that route, I don't know. I would surely take a new one if offered. But would also want to know the issue causing the problems has been remedied.
  7. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Update:
    I obtained a welding truck, and my neighbor repaired the cracks.
    He had an air drill with burring bit, which made it much easier to grind the cracks out. No way an angle grinder could have gotten to some spots.
    The photos didn't turn out great. For some reason the shiny steel looks bronze or rusted. But it is shiny steel at the repairs.
    First photos of the ground out cracks:

    Attached Files:

  8. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    I did not have a chance to get photos of the weld before he ground the face welds down, but here they are prior to finish smoothing.
    When he re-welded the inner door opening corners, he built it up with more weld than from factory, and also added more to the bottom corners.

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  9. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    Not in this case. Oxy/fuel or tig welds do, but not these kind of mig welds. The tough thing about these failures is that poor penetration isn't always obvious. Cracks are obviously bad, welds that vary greatly in width over the length of the weld, undercutting (groove next to the weld) are the things I'd watch for in this case.
  10. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    The smoothed finished buff looks better than in the photos, but here they are.
    He had a hard time on the hinge side, it was tough to get the disc in there past the hinge post.

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  11. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    Flux-core? Lookin' good so far!
  12. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    And finally a pic of the truck I got. The job took 2-1/2 to 3 hours.
    And then I had to return the truck.
    Man I wish I had the paint.

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  13. greythorn3

    greythorn3 Minister of Fire

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    Looks great feral swine! keep us updated on how it holds togeather!

    Ray
  14. Frostbit

    Frostbit Feeling the Heat

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    Dunno. I think I see stick tracks. SMAW LH78, I would guess. I could be wrong.


    I woulda done it with a MIG
  15. crazy_dan

    crazy_dan New Member

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    The reason I was given was when the air wash was welded in it caused a pressure point then due to the heating and cooling expansion and contraction of the metal it causes a crack. I was told where and what the cracks looked like with out them even seeing the pictures. So I believe that they have figured out the problem and have corrected it I hope. I am sure it is cheaper to fix it at the factory and not after a customer buys it.

    From the sounds of it (my thoughts and feelings) it was either a bad batch of metal or The size of plate needed was underestimated IE. it stood up to testing but in real world use where I know hogs and mine are run 24/7, it did not hold up. It is one of them shat happens kinda things.

    I would still buy a PE product even after having this happen because they have stood behind their product. Every maker has had flaws at one point or another, It is how they handle those flaws is a real measure of the caliber of company you are doing business with.
  16. pilot-werx

    pilot-werx Member

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    I have a PE Summit. Will be a year old next week. If you are happy having it welded then so be it...
  17. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Yes, stick.
    Keep in mind it was done where it sits. The upper innr opening cracks were tough enough position wise.
    Not that it was not possible obviously, but working laying on his side looking up. The generator/welder would have to get up to speed once stick was applied. Which caused it to stick a couple times.
    Prolly easier to do in a shop where the stove can be positioned more than the welder having to position himself to the stove.
    I have got to find some stove bright metallic black paint locally. Lowes, HD & Ace do not carry them as far as I know.
  18. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Check your Stove plate or QC card for date of manufacture. If between 2006-2007, keep an eye on the problem areas.
    I am happy to be able to have heat soon, as it is getting cold here. If they want tp replace it next spring or summer, I would not turn a new one down.
    I don't have time to wait till the middle of winter for a new one now. And highly doubt that option is on the table as of yet.
  19. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    My welder said same thing, could have been a batch of inferior steel. But said he could not tell for sure.
    I am thinking these stoves have been made for years before the problem, and obviously since. I am leaning towards bad batch during the 2006-2007 manufacture year.
  20. madison

    madison Minister of Fire

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    Food for thought:

    I have had my manifold booster replaced last yr under warranty ( http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/30126 ) and during communications with PE, it was stated to me that they had changed (increased) the length of the boost manifold and ran into issues with the expansion of the boost manifold which resulted in warping when it expanded with heating. It was indicated that they had changed the dimension back after some issues.

    I now wonder, that if the air wash piece expands, may it be creating the forces that are causing the cracks? And were there length changes made to that part as well? Both pieces are in the same orientation within the stove body....

    I hope that all issues are resolved to the satisfaction of the customer. Though with the dealer interposed between the manufacturer and customer, I have a feeling that the customer's experience will not be uniform unless the manufacturer "steps up to the plate", and rather than "patch/repair" the issues, find the root cause and replace the affected units.

    I would bet that the end result would be a happier customer, and more stoves sold in the future.
  21. Frostbit

    Frostbit Feeling the Heat

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    Do you have one of those flexible grinding/polishing discs and a 4 1/2" electric grinder? Its the way to go to remove any leftover weld and polish out grinding and burr marks before you paint. It will bring the steel to a bright smooth finish before you paint. I mention this because when you do paint, even the tiniest scratch or mark will be amplified to the eye when the paint dries.
  22. 53flyer

    53flyer New Member

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    That's interesting madison.

    Hog- It looks like it goes back as far as 2005 (or 2004) based on Sisu's purchase although knowing the manufactured dates for all the stoves would help with your "leaning" direction. A bad batch of steel seems unlikely to have lasted 2+ yrs though. Here's what I believe to be pretty accurate but people should fill in as appropriate to give you a better idea as to the timeframe involved and how far back you might lean.
    Inserts:
    Sisu-----[Pacific]---[Bought 2005]--[Manufactured ___?]
    Hog-----[Summit]--[Bought 2006]--[Manufactured 07-06]
    Karl-----[Summit]--[Bought 08-07]--[Manufactured ___?]
    Smitty--[Summit]--[Bought &/or Manufactured circa 2006]

    Free Standing:
    crazy_dan [Summit]--[bought 01-08]--[Manufactured 3-2007]
    minesmoria [Summit Classic]--[bought 08-2006]--[Manufactured ___?]

    Model Summary: 1 Pacific, 5 Summits (3 inserts & 2 Free Standing).
  23. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Frost, the welder actually did do that buffing with a "tiger pad" I think he called it. It was like a mirror finish almost, and he explained the reason for exactly what you just described.
    I bought a can of paint today, painted the entire front, both side grilles, the ash lip, the top plate that overhangs, the lower front pc the slide leer passes through, the lever and the latch tab, of yeah and the entire 3 pc shroud.
    Was only going to do the front of the firebox, but the other pcs has minor scratches, but would stand out next to the new paint on the front of the firebox, so I painted it all up front.
    I pulled the EBT box out and found the flapper was not seated in place correctly at all, so was not working at all. Might have been letting air in all the time also. Called Cory at PE and he instructed me the way it should be set and advised no adjustments or winding needed on the arm. I need a shower guys, long day, I'm dead tires and got the insert up and running about an hour ago.
    I'll post photos & such when I return.
    Oh yeah, mine was purchased 2006 and it was manufactured 2006.
  24. Frostbit

    Frostbit Feeling the Heat

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    Yup, Tiger pad or horizontal flap wheel is what it is. Good.

    Glad to hear its back doing what its supposed to be doing. Look forward to the pics.
  25. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Ok, I should have let the pain air cure a couple days, if it becomes a problem, I'll sand & refinish. I just had to see how it is operating .
    I wanted to see if it operated better now that the EBT flapper was in position and covering the hole when it should be. I did not run it hot enough to engage the EBT yet.
    Seems more level and more easily controllable. I won't really know till its up to full temp.
    Here are some photos:
    Right face after paint, and close up.
    EBT, notice the bees, flys & ladybugs. Note to self, during yearly cleaning, pull EBT, inspect & clean.
    Sorry, forgot to take a phot of the flapper in correct position. it has a tab on each side that sits in a slot in those brackets each side.

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