Blaze King install puzzle

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Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
Does your manual actually require 6” to a concrete wall in the rear or is it a “clearance to combustible”? There’s a difference.

If not prohibited by the manual due to rear clearances, I would prefer not to have the additional 90 and horizontal section on your relatively short chimney. As I recall you only have a 16’ stack and two 45s subtract from that to make your stack less than the required 15’ minimum.
I just came in again and thought I'd look for emails before retiring. A few days ago I added a three-foot extension of 8 inch rigid above the chimney, and it's very sturdy and looks good. It really helps to lift the smoke, invisible or visible, well above the roofline.

Again, thanks everyone for your advice and wisdom of experience.
 
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Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
6" to a masonry surface is not a safety issue, rather performance based. The OP' rear wall could reflect heat back to the thermostat and not allow it to perform as designed.
After I have enough experience with the stove, it might be possible to insert some blocks between the stove and the wall surface and see how differently the stove performs. Of course the blocks would need to be plastered to the wall to act as part of the wall itself, so heat would be conducted/absorbed or reflected/radiated as the wall would, and I should be check the wall temperature regularly as part of the experiment. If I would ever have time for such an experiment....

Meanwhile the draft seems good enough. I was wondering whether BK tested the unit for efficiency using only vertical venting, or whether it was also tested with some angles and horizontals, and if so, how much more friction and less vigorous draft affects efficiency?
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
After I have enough experience with the stove, it might be possible to insert some blocks between the stove and the wall surface and see how differently the stove performs. Of course the blocks would need to be plastered to the wall to act as part of the wall itself, so heat would be conducted/absorbed or reflected/radiated as the wall would, and I should be check the wall temperature regularly as part of the experiment. If I would ever have time for such an experiment....

Meanwhile the draft seems good enough. I was wondering whether BK tested the unit for efficiency using only vertical venting, or whether it was also tested with some angles and horizontals, and if so, how much more friction and less vigorous draft affects efficiency?
There must be a sweet spot for best efficiency, not too much of a good thing, too easy draft, either? Note I added an extension at the top of the chimney, see comment above.
 

MissMac

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2017
923
NW Ontario
Every install is different. On mine on a cold start: I open it all up then warm the flue for 10-20 seconds with my torch. add 3 -5 peices of wood. Start it with 1/4 super cedar. Let it burn till the cat is active. Then close the bypass and shut the thermostat all the way.

If the room is cold I kick the fan on for an hour. If not then it just runs as is for the next 7 hours or so.

On a restart when im adding wood to a warm stove: Open it all up. Rake the coals forwards. add 3 - 5 pieces of wood. Let burn till cats active or 5 minutes, which ever is longer. Flip the bypass closed and turn it all the way down. Come back 8-12 hours later.
I think that so long as your wood isn't covered in icicles or rain water (which hopefully you'd know better than to huck directly into your stove), then you should close the bypass immediately after you reload if your catalyst is still in the active range. I believe that this is in fact the instruction from BK. Bypass should only be open if your cat is inactive.

Here's a spin-off reason in support of closing the bypass asap if cat is active:

Yesterday i was burning a bunch of uglies in my stove, which included some pieces of a butt-end of a tree that was quite flared. I performed a reload of these uglies with a good bed of coals and an active cat. Somehow, while I was loading, a piece of the flared end on one of the uglies shifted and got pointing upwards. After I had loaded the stove (and the pieces were already catching on fire), I closed the door and went to throw the bypass - it wouldn't close. Clearly obstructed. Heart pounding, tried twice, realized it wasn't going to close - okay, time to open the door (and thus add a lot of air to the already robust fire) and try to see if something was obstructing the door from closing (it was). With gloves on and a lot of expletive words, i was able to identify the piece, and pull it down and readjust it. All the while with a raging inferno before my eyes. Closed the door, successfully flipped the bypass, changed my pants, made a tea.

Now, if I had waited even a couple of minutes with the bypass open to let the load more fully engage before attempting to throw the bypass, and THEN realizing it wasn't going to close, I would have been in trouble. Just some food for thought. Fifth year on my BK and i have never once accidentally loaded a piece of wood that impeded the bypass, but clearly, stuff happens.
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
So Dale,
Are ya figuring out how to run this stove yet ??
I've been off this thread a couple days. I still have questions:

I'm using a pile of wood that's several years old, but was not properly covered outdoors (frequently rained on) and was split only six weeks ago, then stacked indoors in a heated space with an electric fan blowing through the stack 24/7. It's mixed hardwood, a few pieces still have bark on, and I can't test every piece, but they're still mostly over 20%. Now, consequently, the very short (approximately 8 inch long) horizontal portion of the stove pipe assembly is leaking water and creosote liquid at the bottom of one of the seams of an adjustable angle fitting. (This conforms my suspicion that the seams of adjustable angle fittings are really not sealed.) The drops begin to appear every time I add wood and continue for at least an hour each time. I have collected about a quart over the last several days. It is mostly water, the color of tea, surprisingly not too smelly, and doesn't feel sticky when it dries on my fingers. I've been making the stove quite full the last few days, putting in about ten large pieces at a time. I keep the thermostatic temperature control set at the very beginnng of the white stripe on the dial, because even at that low setting the cat gets very hot.

Since the cat thermometer is still well up in the white ("active") zone when I reload, I don't wait long to close the bypass (and I'm also thinking with the bypass open even more creosote and moisture will make it into the chimney pipe). The cat thermometer rises very quickly to almost the top of the white ("Active") zone, and last night for a short while it even went just BEYOND the end of the white zone after loading, at which point I opened the bypass for awhile, thinking the cat might be damaged by overheating. It dropped a little bit, back into the white zone, after I opened the bypass.

My questions are: (1) What is the effect of excess moisture on the cat? I read somewhere yesterday that too much moisture all at once can cause thermal shock damage to the cat. Evidently the cat is not able to destroy all the creosote its receiving, even at the very high temperature that its been reaching.

(2) How would you handle this stove (King 40) to get the most out of it? Since I saw on your post King Ultra heating over 5000 square feet on medium/low....
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
I think that so long as your wood isn't covered in icicles or rain water (which hopefully you'd know better than to huck directly into your stove), then you should close the bypass immediately after you reload if your catalyst is still in the active range. I believe that this is in fact the instruction from BK. Bypass should only be open if your cat is inactive.

Here's a spin-off reason in support of closing the bypass asap if cat is active:

Yesterday i was burning a bunch of uglies in my stove, which included some pieces of a butt-end of a tree that was quite flared. I performed a reload of these uglies with a good bed of coals and an active cat. Somehow, while I was loading, a piece of the flared end on one of the uglies shifted and got pointing upwards. After I had loaded the stove (and the pieces were already catching on fire), I closed the door and went to throw the bypass - it wouldn't close. Clearly obstructed. Heart pounding, tried twice, realized it wasn't going to close - okay, time to open the door (and thus add a lot of air to the already robust fire) and try to see if something was obstructing the door from closing (it was). With gloves on and a lot of expletive words, i was able to identify the piece, and pull it down and readjust it. All the while with a raging inferno before my eyes. Closed the door, successfully flipped the bypass, changed my pants, made a tea.

Now, if I had waited even a couple of minutes with the bypass open to let the load more fully engage before attempting to throw the bypass, and THEN realizing it wasn't going to close, I would have been in trouble. Just some food for thought. Fifth year on my BK and i have never once accidentally loaded a piece of wood that impeded the bypass, but clearly, stuff happens.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
#2: burn only dry wood. Seriously. It doesn't make sense otherwise.
You're wearing the cat, you're wearing the stove pipe, you're creating chimney hazards, and you're wasting the heat by having to evaporate all that water using the energy in the wood.

I'd simply stop burning until you have properly dry wood.

Wood does not season much when not split....
 
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Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
Sounds like you load yours pretty full sometimes. I'm not loading too close to the cat shield so that flames won't rise directly into the cat. You mentioned icicles and rainwater on wood that you would not load, but what has been your experience with internal wood moisture over 20%? I've read that adding too much moisture to the stove box can cause thermal shock to the cat. Maybe a very large load of very slightly moist wood, even just a little over 20%, could introduce that much moisture into the stove box? Maybe I should be putting in just a few pieces at a time and loading every few hours like a non-catalytic, re-burn tube stove. I had planned on filling this stove to the max and trying to get the longest possible burn time.
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
#2: burn only dry wood. Seriously. It doesn't make sense otherwise.
You're wearing the cat, you're wearing the stove pipe, you're creating chimney hazards, and you're wasting the heat by having to evaporate all that water using the energy in the wood.

I'd simply stop burning until you have properly dry wood.

Wood does not season much when not split....
Do you think the cat getting so hot because I load more than five or six pieces at a time, or maybe because of the wood "quality" or because the cat is brand new and "overactive"?

Some of this wood is about dry enough (from dead standing trees) but it's a hodgepodge of different kinds. Of course I looking for a source of drier wood now. I have a cord stacked indoors with heat and fan on, but it might take months. Well, at least no external moisture. With our ancient stove in the greenhouse and the open fireplace it didn't make as much difference.

It's interesting that the seam in the horizontal acts like a collector and I can measure it. Everything runs downhill to there.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
Yes, these stove work best by stuffing them - every reload you have to run them hard for a while, creating some smoke and a lot of heat going up the flue before turning down to a more efficient mode. Minimizing such inefficient disruptions is best (for me).

I don't have experience with damaging the cat. The point is that thermal shocking the cat may crack the washcoat, which over time will decrease its efficacy as cracked films will spall off easier than non-cracked films (and there may be more reasons why). I avoid that by burning drier wood. It doesn't make sense to run the motor of a new car in a way the manual says not too because it will (over time) damage it. So I don't either with a BK.

Moreover, you create hazards in the pipe by burning such wood, as evidenced by your leaking. That *will* lead to chimney fire hazards. Moreover, have you measured the energy needed to boil water? All that energy is coming from your wood. You're just wasting 10s of percents of the energy that could heat to simply boil water. (And then 30% is going in the ground b/c of the uninsulated slab and walls).

Again, I'd simply wait until you have dry wood - however sourced.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
Do you think the cat getting so hot because I load more than five or six pieces at a time, or maybe because of the wood "quality" or because the cat is brand new and "overactive"?

Some of this wood is about dry enough (from dead standing trees) but it's a hodgepodge of different kinds. Of course I looking for a source of drier wood now. I have a cord stacked indoors with heat and fan on, but it might take months. Well, at least no external moisture. With our ancient stove in the greenhouse and the open fireplace it didn't make as much difference.

It's interesting that the seam in the horizontal acts like a collector and I can measure it. Everything runs downhill to there.
no, new cats get hot because they are hyperactive as new cats. It'll behave more measured after a few months (depending on how much you burn).

Ancient stoves did easier with wet wood yes. Because they pumped more heat thru the flue to the outside, keeping it hot and pushing all the stuff outside rather than having it condense on the flue walls. This is why everyone says "modern stove? --> dry wood(!!)".

I'd look at your horizontal part; does it sag, how is it angled etc.

And no, they are not supposed to be airtight.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
But again, the only, the best, and all I can say is: burn dry wood.
Protect your home, your stove investment, and get some heat out of the wood you worked for.
Burn dry wood. Seriously.
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
Stop burning until all dry wood is not an option now, because we'll be having single digit temperatures the next few nights. The stove is keeping the basement warm and thereby helping with the upstairs heating.

I plan to build a roofed-over firewood storage and keep ahead three or four years on splitting. I am used to our old greenhouse stove and open fireplace that can tolerate last-minute splits, unsplit wood, fungus bark, or anything.
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
no, new cats get hot because they are hyperactive as new cats. It'll behave more measured after a few months (depending on how much you burn).

Ancient stoves did easier with wet wood yes. Because they pumped more heat thru the flue to the outside, keeping it hot and pushing all the stuff outside rather than having it condense on the flue walls. This is why everyone says "modern stove? --> dry wood(!!)".

I'd look at your horizontal part; does it sag, how is it angled etc.

And no, they are not supposed to be airtight.
The pipe is level at that point, but the bottom of the adjusting seam (is the seam called it a "groll" or something?) is just a tiny bit lower than the rest of the pipe, so that's where it comes out, drop by drop into a container I set below.
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
I just checked it again, it seems to have stopped again. It happens for awhile after each loading, and I make the stove box about 3/4 full. About ONE CUP of liquid is collected from the last two loads I put in last night and this morning.

If I had not needed to make a horizontal to keep the required clearance from the wall, this liquid would have run back down into the stove and I would not even be aware of it.
 

ElderlyIron

New Member
Jan 6, 2022
3
Southern Oregon
If you are intent on using the King 40, (Not saying to do it, just saying if you are determined to) I can give you a couple of pointers. First off, though, your insurance still won't pay if you have a fire due to improper stove installation. Now, on with the show. Aluminum reflects 98% of all radiant heat. I have never understood why no one produces aluminum heat shields. Placing a sheet of "aircraft" aluminum on the wall adjacent the stove will prevent 98% of any radiant heat loss to the concrete wall. I have a cinder block house and placed a 5 foot square piece of aircraft aluminum on the wall with a 1" spacing. It made a huge difference in the room! I also use it on the archway next to the stove, though my clearances are in spec. There, you can put your hand behind the aluminum and the wall is ambient temperature, regard of how hot the stove might be. Same goes for the floor. Radiant heat loss to the floor will be negligible. I will say, though that when my King 40 is at full temp, I can place my hand agains the bottom of the stove. We have the legs instead of the pedestal, and it's on a brick hearth. I used to place my shoes, gloves and other item for warming nder our old stove. Not so with the King 40. There's hardly any heat at all coming from beneath it, but you don't want any heat loss at all, which you WOULD get by setting it directly on the concrete.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
I just checked it again, it seems to have stopped again. It happens for awhile after each loading, and I make the stove box about 3/4 full. About ONE CUP of liquid is collected from the last two loads I put in last night and this morning.

If I had not needed to make a horizontal to keep the required clearance from the wall, this liquid would have run back down into the stove and I would not even be aware of it.

But you would get aware of it in due time from corrosion around your bypass valve mechanism.

I'm surprised you have water this close to your stove; that is supposed to be the hottest part of the flue. If it condenses (or does not re-evaporate after running down) here, imagine the stuff at your chimney top... You need to be aboven250 F to avoid creosote condensation. Evidently you are not.

Is your chimney insulated?

Did you have a stove in this location before? (Re: not being able to stop burning) or did you leave the basement cold?

Resplit your wood into smaller pieces before stacking near the stove; it'll dry faster.

Try to get some sawdust (no was additives etc!) Logs to mix with the wood. They are dry.

Get pallets and mix with the wet wood. (Take *all* nails out; cats don't like metal)
 

Slate Dale

Member
Dec 27, 2021
159
Slatington, Pennsylvania
But you would get aware of it in due time from corrosion around your bypass valve mechanism.

I'm surprised you have water this close to your stove; that is supposed to be the hottest part of the flue. If it condenses (or does not re-evaporate after running down) here, imagine the stuff at your chimney top... You need to be aboven250 F to avoid creosote condensation. Evidently you are not.

Is your chimney insulated?

Did you have a stove in this location before? (Re: not being able to stop burning) or did you leave the basement cold?
I broke out the 60-year-old, deteriorated and too small clay oil heater flue and relined with 8 inch rigid stainless, insulated with vermiculite and Portland cement.

There is no insulation where the rigid stainless passes at a 45 degree angle through two feet of solid concrete into the basement, but that part of the basement wall where it protrudes is quite warm now.

The basement was never really cold. The old oil heater (circa 1970) and the pipes coming out of it on their way upstairs "wasted" some heat energy into the basement.

I don't think the stove pipe BEFORE it goes into the wall is hot enough, because I can hold my hand on it most of the time. The cat thermometer registers high in the active zone, the stove top is too hot to touch, and the telescoping vertical pipe is hot, but the temperature seems to drop off toward the wall.

My infrared thermometer has been missing for months, may need to buy another. I'll be offline the rest of the day. Thanks for your help.
 

BKVP

Minister of Fire
That amount of moisture could and likely will result in rusting out parts of the stove, including the flue collar, dome components etc.
As recommended, look for some manufactured fuels, such as North Idaho Energy Logs, Malheur Forrest Products logs and Bio Bricks. You could burn these until you obtain properly seasoned wood.
 
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showrguy

Minister of Fire
Aug 2, 2015
558
Marysville, Pa.
That amount of moisture could and likely will result in rusting out parts of the stove, including the flue collar, dome components etc.
As recommended, look for some manufactured fuels, such as North Idaho Energy Logs, Malheur Forrest Products logs and Bio Bricks. You could burn these until you obtain properly seasoned wood.
What he said !!
 

showrguy

Minister of Fire
Aug 2, 2015
558
Marysville, Pa.
I've been off this thread a couple days. I still have questions:

I'm using a pile of wood that's several years old, but was not properly covered outdoors (frequently rained on) and was split only six weeks ago, then stacked indoors in a heated space with an electric fan blowing through the stack 24/7. It's mixed hardwood, a few pieces still have bark on, and I can't test every piece, but they're still mostly over 20%. Now, consequently, the very short (approximately 8 inch long) horizontal portion of the stove pipe assembly is leaking water and creosote liquid at the bottom of one of the seams of an adjustable angle fitting. (This conforms my suspicion that the seams of adjustable angle fittings are really not sealed.) The drops begin to appear every time I add wood and continue for at least an hour each time. I have collected about a quart over the last several days. It is mostly water, the color of tea, surprisingly not too smelly, and doesn't feel sticky when it dries on my fingers. I've been making the stove quite full the last few days, putting in about ten large pieces at a time. I keep the thermostatic temperature control set at the very beginnng of the white stripe on the dial, because even at that low setting the cat gets very hot.

Since the cat thermometer is still well up in the white ("active") zone when I reload, I don't wait long to close the bypass (and I'm also thinking with the bypass open even more creosote and moisture will make it into the chimney pipe). The cat thermometer rises very quickly to almost the top of the white ("Active") zone, and last night for a short while it even went just BEYOND the end of the white zone after loading, at which point I opened the bypass for awhile, thinking the cat might be damaged by overheating. It dropped a little bit, back into the white zone, after I opened the bypass.

My questions are: (1) What is the effect of excess moisture on the cat? I read somewhere yesterday that too much moisture all at once can cause thermal shock damage to the cat. Evidently the cat is not able to destroy all the creosote its receiving, even at the very high temperature that its been reaching.

(2) How would you handle this stove (King 40) to get the most out of it? Since I saw on your post King Ultra heating over 5000 square feet on medium/low....
You need to have good fuel to see what this stove can/will do..
Standing dead doesn’t mean dry…. I cut a red oak 2 yrs ago that was standing dead 8 years, it was all over 45% on the meter..
my stove is on the 1st floor of a 2 story house with a very open floor plan, 1sr floor is 40 x 60, 2nd floor is 40 x 80, my stove has never run on high other than fresh startups..
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
28,443
central pa
I broke out the 60-year-old, deteriorated and too small clay oil heater flue and relined with 8 inch rigid stainless, insulated with vermiculite and Portland cement.

There is no insulation where the rigid stainless passes at a 45 degree angle through two feet of solid concrete into the basement, but that part of the basement wall where it protrudes is quite warm now.

The basement was never really cold. The old oil heater (circa 1970) and the pipes coming out of it on their way upstairs "wasted" some heat energy into the basement.

I don't think the stove pipe BEFORE it goes into the wall is hot enough, because I can hold my hand on it most of the time. The cat thermometer registers high in the active zone, the stove top is too hot to touch, and the telescoping vertical pipe is hot, but the temperature seems to drop off toward the wall.

My infrared thermometer has been missing for months, may need to buy another. I'll be offline the rest of the day. Thanks for your help.
What size masonry chase is the 8" liner in? Very few are large enough for an 8" liner and room for proper insulation.

Regardless if you are having that much water drip out of the pipe your wood is very wet. So you are loosing 1/3 of your BTUs to the surrounding soil. And about 1/4 of your BTUs wasted boiling the water out of your wood. That doesn't leave much to heat your house with.
 

MissMac

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2017
923
NW Ontario
I've been off this thread a couple days. I still have questions:

I'm using a pile of wood that's several years old, but was not properly covered outdoors (frequently rained on) and was split only six weeks ago, then stacked indoors in a heated space with an electric fan blowing through the stack 24/7. It's mixed hardwood, a few pieces still have bark on, and I can't test every piece, but they're still mostly over 20%. Now, consequently, the very short (approximately 8 inch long) horizontal portion of the stove pipe assembly is leaking water and creosote liquid at the bottom of one of the seams of an adjustable angle fitting. (This conforms my suspicion that the seams of adjustable angle fittings are really not sealed.) The drops begin to appear every time I add wood and continue for at least an hour each time. I have collected about a quart over the last several days. It is mostly water, the color of tea, surprisingly not too smelly, and doesn't feel sticky when it dries on my fingers. I've been making the stove quite full the last few days, putting in about ten large pieces at a time. I keep the thermostatic temperature control set at the very beginnng of the white stripe on the dial, because even at that low setting the cat gets very hot.

Since the cat thermometer is still well up in the white ("active") zone when I reload, I don't wait long to close the bypass (and I'm also thinking with the bypass open even more creosote and moisture will make it into the chimney pipe). The cat thermometer rises very quickly to almost the top of the white ("Active") zone, and last night for a short while it even went just BEYOND the end of the white zone after loading, at which point I opened the bypass for awhile, thinking the cat might be damaged by overheating. It dropped a little bit, back into the white zone, after I opened the bypass.

My questions are: (1) What is the effect of excess moisture on the cat? I read somewhere yesterday that too much moisture all at once can cause thermal shock damage to the cat. Evidently the cat is not able to destroy all the creosote its receiving, even at the very high temperature that its been reaching.

(2) How would you handle this stove (King 40) to get the most out of it? Since I saw on your post King Ultra heating over 5000 square feet on medium/low....
be careful smouldering wet wood in your stove. that equals creosote. inspect your chimney frequently
 
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MissMac

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2017
923
NW Ontario
Sounds like you load yours pretty full sometimes. I'm not loading too close to the cat shield so that flames won't rise directly into the cat. You mentioned icicles and rainwater on wood that you would not load, but what has been your experience with internal wood moisture over 20%? I've read that adding too much moisture to the stove box can cause thermal shock to the cat. Maybe a very large load of very slightly moist wood, even just a little over 20%, could introduce that much moisture into the stove box? Maybe I should be putting in just a few pieces at a time and loading every few hours like a non-catalytic, re-burn tube stove. I had planned on filling this stove to the max and trying to get the longest possible burn time.
you can't do this with wet wood, and if your wood is over 20%mc, it's too wet.