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Pellet House pellet search and review "Ultimate Pellet search"

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by jtakeman, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    I swept the inside of the stove into the ash pan. I also tapped lightly on the pipe and removed the t-cap and dumped what was in the cap into the ash pan. I shifted out any loose pellets with a 3/16 screen into the mason jar for volume photo. Then I dumped the mason jar into a ziplock bag and weight the ash. Scale was tared fpr ziplock bag weight.

    Way too hot to burn anything now, But in the fall We can start a new thread with our new test results.

    Is this how we check pellet density??

    I have ordered a 12"x12"x12" box(1 cubic foot). I will fill the box with pellets and weight the filled box. This will give us the volume measurement some are looking for. 1 bag of the dense pellets will fit in the box with room to spare. I will add some from the 2nd bag to fill the box. If a bag wills the box and the isn't room for all the pellets, Then this is a less dense pellet.

    I am just checking to see if all agree on checking the density of the pellet brands? I would say we want the whole bag plus. The bags that don't fit are the pellets that aren't going to produce great heat. But they may burn a little longer than the dense pellets.

    Next would be overall burn time(how long each or both bags burn for). Just trying to cover all the base's.

    Anything else we need to check?????

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  2. ChandlerR

    ChandlerR Minister of Fire

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    Jay, before you know it, you'll be able to quit your job and take this show full time..... JTIPRL...(Jay Takeman Independant Pellet Research Lab) As always, thank you!
    Hope your summer is going well!

    Chan
  3. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    Oh boy' that sounds techie and makes me feel nerdie even!

    Summers going good. Getting a lot of fishing in. Be a bit to warm for me though! Muggy,hot and stick isn't my cup of tea! Yukk even!

    How's your summer going??
  4. ChandlerR

    ChandlerR Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, this summer's been a good one, if you like the heat and humidity.... Glad you're getting some good fishing in! I'm writing this from the Moose River Campground in St. Johnsbury, Vermont. We've been her for almost two weeks. Came up to see the Dog Chapel and Dog Mountian. We're backed up to a trout stream that produces well in the spring but is pretty low now. This is a beautiful area and I see that almost everyone here stocks pellets. Supermarkets, hardware stores, feed and grain stores, you name it. I'll have to look and see what kind they sell before I go home.

    Chan
  5. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    :lol:
    A true piggie, Even on vacation! Ahhhhh I feel the pride. :lol: :lol: :lol:
  6. iceman

    iceman Minister of Fire

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    J- how bout you set up a papal and we can doNate! Then you can test for us again this year!
    I would like to thank you for all your time and making it much easier to buy pellets worry free!
  7. schoondog

    schoondog Feeling the Heat

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    This gets my vote for a sticky too!!! Simply to much work and information to let it lay in the backround. I am always going to find info from this thread.

    Schoondog
  8. imacman

    imacman Guest

    X3
  9. ChandlerR

    ChandlerR Minister of Fire

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    I agree. Jays work is just to valuable to have to keep bumping it to the top.

    Chan
  10. imacman

    imacman Guest

    I sent a PM to Moderator BeGreen asking that these be made into a sticky.
  11. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Dog Mt and Chapel....didn't this guy die this summer???
  12. ChandlerR

    ChandlerR Minister of Fire

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    I Think it was last year. He killed himself in his shrinks parking lot.

    Chan
  13. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    iceman,

    This year cash isn't a problem, its going to be time as I am busy making to much cash. :)

    I have offers from pellet places donating pellets for the next test. It seems they like the testing as much as we do. They get a feel for how they stack up to other brands.
  14. vvvv

    vvvv New Member

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    outdoor & indoor temp, humidity of combustion air & room air, direction & speed of wind, cleanliness of stove & heat exchangers.. a denser pellet will burn hotter but a bag wont last as long as a less dense pellet & there the combustion air ratio should be accounted for........did i forget any other variables? which are accounted for with the BOMB CALORIMETER.
  15. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    Each batch started out with a clean stove. Pellet density will be checked as best as possible.

    Blimp you are honestly looking for a controlled test, Which is something I can not do for you. Twinports will gladly test any pellet you send them for a slight FEE! Sorry you are just asking for WAY too much! You might be better off testing your own and ignoring what we are looking at doing here! Sorry! :zip:
  16. vvvv

    vvvv New Member

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    naw, this is entertaining & I do take it into consideration
  17. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    I'm really glad my fellow members find this useful, web has the stickies on the top of the forum. Top shelf even! Thanks Web!


    If only POOK could see me know! :) :lol: ;-P
  18. WoodPorn

    WoodPorn Minister of Fire

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    Congrats J! You're definately a big pig now!

    Somehow I think pook is looking right at you!
  19. schoondog

    schoondog Feeling the Heat

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    Jay you are in the big pig club for sure now. :lol: Thanks again for all you do.

    Schoondog
  20. trogers

    trogers New Member

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    Thanks, J! This is a fantastic test, and probably one of the most useful (and this is saying a lot) post ever on this forum. I do have a question that I'm hoping you or someone else can answer. Do pellet results vary greatly in different stoves? I have a Harman Accentra insert and I have been running mostly softwood, such as Okies and Spruce Pointe. I have also run NEWP blend and found them to be very good as well. tghere is a difference in ash volume, but the heat seemed to be relatively close. What is you view as far as cost/BTU is concerned? Let's say you can get a 9000 BTU pellet for $290 per ton and a 8000 BTU for $250 per ton, is the "delivered" heat difference worth the extra dough?

    I realize that this is may be a difficult question to answer, but I tought that I'd throw it out there.

    Thanks again!
  21. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    I definitely was a lot of fun, But it took lots of time to do.

    Yes, With a different stove you should see different heat results. There are variables that come in to play. Feed rates and stove efficiency are the big ones. Ash results should be pretty darn close. I don't think the stove can make a pellet produce or reduce the ash amount. The only way is if it pushes more of the ash out the vent?

    I don't do cost per rated BTU because I don't trust what is put on the bag for BTU amounts. The main reason I stress to burn them and measure temps.

    The last question is a good one. So if I used your example, you would be getting 200,000 extra BTU/s per ton with the $290 pellets.

    Heres the math:
    8000
    x2000 = 16000000 @ $250 = $.000015625/BTU

    Add another 200,000 BTU's @ $.000015625/BTU= $31.25

    For a total of $281.25

    So you would need another 6.25 bags at 5.00/bag=$31.25

    I would say pretty darn close. But you would need to haul the extra bags and also I have found the hotter pellets burn much cleaner and that gives them the edge! Heat first, ash second and then whats in your price range.

    You could figure out the delivered heat difference if you knew exactly how much fuel you we burning per hour at XºF temp with pellet A against XºF with pellet B. But its lots of math and I could not convert it to BTU's either. It would just be ºF per lbs of fuel!

    Hopefully someone will check my math and I didn't mess it up!
  22. trogers

    trogers New Member

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    Thanks! This seems to make sense to me.
  23. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    One other thing about this is the Higher BTU pellet will produce higher output temps from your stove. If you have a stove that is struggling to keep temps in the house I would not recommend the lower BTU pellets in the extreme cold weather. This is were you want the max heat output from the higher BTU pellets. You can burn the others in the warmer shoulder season.

    No matter what I do for my pellet purchase, I always get at least some max heat pellets for the cold season. I get skimpy and save in the shoulder season only! I stay much warmer that way and my stove is never set on the max feed setting! Maxing out the stove for short periods is OK and helps clean up the stove. But burning on max long periods isn't good, and may reduce the life of the stove components.
  24. ADVA

    ADVA New Member

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    Glad to see the box for density.
    An issue may be the pellet length.
    Since may create more air gaps between pieces of the pellets.

    Wondering if you lined up say a 1' in length of pellets that are 1" long.

    Also if you make a tool say that holds those inch pieces in a 1' length.
    Then say push them together with the same force.
    Cut off the last piece so they are all fitting into that 1' under the same amount of pressure.
    Then measure the weight.

    Sure the ends of pellets will not be cut exactly square & will not be "exact".
    However it is "controlled enough" to be of value as to the findings/comparisons.

    But heck,...You could even wood file the ends a little bit to square them up!
    So if you have the same amount of pieces per each test.
    So the 1" long is not so critical.
    Just the amount/number of pieces in the 1' length
    Then it will be the most controlled.

    I would assume you would have to do this at least three times from different parts of the bag.

    This could be done as a "secondary density" test along with the 1'x1'x1' box.
    This way we could see the correlation of density & pellet length.

    Appreciate Greatly all your going thru to get us all some fair decent readings & reviews on the pellets!!!
  25. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    I will try to do the box density the same way that PFI does it. But that is as far as I will take it. Lets not over do this please. Logging outside temps, Humidity and wind direction. Wind speeds and dog farts in close proximity to the vent. There will be to time to burn the pellet and I will be so confused. :ahhh:

    How about I just burn them and show ash volume and weight. Skip all the controversial stuff?
    jjs777_fzr likes this.

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