Blaze King Princess 29 versus Pacific Summit LE - Insert Replacement for Regency I3100L

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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
Hello. I'm replacing a Regency I3100L and wondering if folks have an opinion on which might be a better unit for my case, the Blaze King 29 or the Pacific Energy Summit LE.

Both of these units have a larger firebox and I have a great deal of firewood cut at approximately 18", as the Regency I3100L had a generous firebox (2.9 cu ft I think), and could handle a max log size of 20".

Home is a typical two story colonial, outside chimney with ~28 feet of insulated 6" flue. It is generally in the upper 70s and 80s in the rooms near and with the current insert and upstairs in the 60s. It's been PERFECT for comfort in the evening and sleeping. Move some heat around with fans and the like.

I understand the PE Summit LE is the most like my old Regency, non-cat with removable baffle, and the Blaze King is a cat unit with a recurring expense. That said, I believe the BK Princess 29 qualifies for the tax credit (assuming that credit is something I qualify for).

If it was one of these two units, what would you chose and why?

I appreciate the help and opinions.

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stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
Depends. Which one do you like the looks of?

Brands are both good.

One will have more flame view than the other. Is that important?

18" is pushing it for the BK (at 18.75"...)

The firebox of the PE is 0.4 cu ft larger, so more BTUs in, and.possibly more out (per hour) or longer burns (if the have the same efficiency in your set up).

The BK is great, but the other one may be more what you are used to. Why are you thinking of switching the type of stove? (I.e. why is the BK a contender?)
 
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zmender

Member
Dec 27, 2021
130
CT
I’m located a few miles away in Guilford and I’m really looking forward to getting a cat stove in the future (more precisely BK). We don’t get too cold here, a few nights per year of single digits, handful of nights in teens. We have a lot of days ranging from 20-40; and oir shoulder season is in 30-50s. High output stove doesn’t mean much for me since I have yet to run my insert at >30% sustained, more likely I’m wishing to have a better unit that can heat >24hrs when it’s not freezing outside.
 
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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
Depends. Which one do you like the looks of?

Brands are both good.

One will have more flame view than the other. Is that important?

18" is pushing it for the BK (at 18.75"...)

The firebox of the PE is 0.4 cu ft larger, so more BTUs in, and.possibly more out (per hour) or longer burns (if the have the same efficiency in your set up).

The BK is great, but the other one may be more what you are used to. Why are you thinking of switching the type of stove? (I.e. why is the BK a contender?)
Thank you for the response.

PE Summit has a little better look to it in my opinion.

Yes 18 is probably pushing it for the Princess and perhaps I'm wishful thinking. I must have 14 cord of wood cut. I'm sure it'll be lots of longs that become annoying.

Excellent point on the size of the Pacific energy summit firebox. That's got to be at least 20% larger. I tried to compare the EPA rated BTUs on those but I could not find it for the blaze King. I was looking for some measure, equal measure apples and apples, that I could use to compare these two units.

It's more important that we get a quality unit that will last and throw at least as much heat as our old unit. We tend to give a good load of wood in the morning, and one late in the evening. So she runs 24/7.

Considering the blaze King as it would be more even heat perhaps. But maybe not. The old unit would run up and just cruise for maybe an hour hour and a half in the sweet spot for temperature and then come down. That would make it tough sometimes to be in that room. I thought the blaze king might be more even in terms of distribution. Same BTU but over a longer period of time. From what you're saying about the fire box sounds like the blaze King princess 29 will have lower output than I'm used to.

I think the blaze King princess 29 gets the tax credit 26% so that does help. I'm not excited about having a catalytic converter, and the summit large baffle looks very sweet and easy to get in and out for cleaning. Certainly easier than what I have with right now.

I appreciate these considerations with you. They are about the same price installed, but there would be about 1200 bucks back on the ways king.

Thank you
 

davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
I’m located a few miles away in Guilford and I’m really looking forward to getting a cat stove in the future (more precisely BK). We don’t get too cold here, a few nights per year of single digits, handful of nights in teens. We have a lot of days ranging from 20-40; and oir shoulder season is in 30-50s. High output stove doesn’t mean much for me since I have yet to run my insert at >30% sustained, more likely I’m wishing to have a better unit that can heat >24hrs when it’s not freezing outside.
Climate is not too much different in Bethany but I am at 500 ft of elevation which means I get snow often when you get rain. I have many friends in Guilford it's a really great town.

If I can find an apples and apples comparison on the BTU output of these two units that would be helpful. The princess 29 sticks way into the room which I wonder if that would make up the difference in size of a firebox. Not entirely sure.

I just don't want to give up too much on the heat that I've been getting out of my old unit. I haven't burned oil to heat my main house in 7 years.

Thank you for the reply!
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
28,452
central pa
Thank you for the response.

PE Summit has a little better look to it in my opinion.

Yes 18 is probably pushing it for the Princess and perhaps I'm wishful thinking. I must have 14 cord of wood cut. I'm sure it'll be lots of longs that become annoying.

Excellent point on the size of the Pacific energy summit firebox. That's got to be at least 20% larger. I tried to compare the EPA rated BTUs on those but I could not find it for the blaze King. I was looking for some measure, equal measure apples and apples, that I could use to compare these two units.

It's more important that we get a quality unit that will last and throw at least as much heat as our old unit. We tend to give a good load of wood in the morning, and one late in the evening. So she runs 24/7.

Considering the blaze King as it would be more even heat perhaps. But maybe not. The old unit would run up and just cruise for maybe an hour hour and a half in the sweet spot for temperature and then come down. That would make it tough sometimes to be in that room. I thought the blaze king might be more even in terms of distribution. Same BTU but over a longer period of time. From what you're saying about the fire box sounds like the blaze King princess 29 will have lower output than I'm used to.

I think the blaze King princess 29 gets the tax credit 26% so that does help. I'm not excited about having a catalytic converter, and the summit large baffle looks very sweet and easy to get in and out for cleaning. Certainly easier than what I have with right now.

I appreciate these considerations with you. They are about the same price installed, but there would be about 1200 bucks back on the ways king.

Thank you
What ever stove you choose get your draft under control. The princess will give you lower output than the 3100 but it will be much more even.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
The Princess will indeed be much more even. Also (and in particular) during shoulder seasons.

So, do you want a stove to be able to handle (without back up of oil) worst of winter or one that is able to handle 90-95 pct of the time, and that makes life easier in 40-50 F weather.

If you are a wood heat purist (only wood and I'll be damned if I use anything else to supplement a few percent on the coldest three days), then you need to get the bigger stove.

If it's the other way around and running the heat for 3 days, but only a little because the insert does most of the heavy lifting, then the princess might be good.

That is my view. Others might see things differently.
 
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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
What ever stove you choose get your draft under control. The princess will give you lower output than the 3100 but it will be much more even.
I have no reason to believe the draft is not under control. The unit would cruise right in its sweet spot for an hour, hour and a half and slowly come down. New dealers and installers that I've talked with say there's absolutely nothing wrong with my setup and they would install it per the manufacturer's recommendation. Nothing about my setup is different they and do tons of two-story colonials just like mine.

But thank you.
 

davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
The Princess will indeed be much more even. Also (and in particular) during shoulder seasons.

So, do you want a stove to be able to handle (without back up of oil) worst of winter or one that is able to handle 90-95 pct of the time, and that makes life easier in 40-50 F weather.

If you are a wood heat purist (only wood and I'll be damned if I use anything else to supplement a few percent on the coldest three days), then you need to get the bigger stove.

If it's the other way around and running the heat for 3 days, but only a little because the insert does most of the heavy lifting, then the princess might be good.

That is my view. Others might see things differently.
This is a very thoughtful response that I can use to help me understand which way to go. I will share these exact thoughts with my wife. Sometimes we get blown out of this room when we want to be here and that would be less so with the princess it sounds. Very much appreciated. Great thoughts
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
28,452
central pa
I have no reason to believe the draft is not under control. The unit would cruise right in its sweet spot for an hour, hour and a half and slowly come down. New dealers and installers that I've talked with say there's absolutely nothing wrong with my setup and they would install it per the manufacturer's recommendation. Nothing about my setup is different they and do tons of two-story colonials just like mine.

But thank you.
I am simply trying to keep you from having another stove fail prematurely.

Btw that short of a sweet spot is another sign of excessive draft.
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
4,353
Long Island NY
In regards to the above discussion, I would see if you can get the installer of the next insert to measure draft (which needs to happen when the fire is burning, so when the current insert is still installed). It would be useful to know that draft is within specs. (And it can be hard to do with an insert, so better on the old one in case some parts need to be altered to do it.)
 
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brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
7,128
NE Ohio
Btw that short of a sweet spot is another sign of excessive draft.
Kinda what I was thinking...I can get that with my little Drolet 1400i in the fireplace!

To OP, does Woodstock have anything of interest to you? They are pretty close to you and well known for going above and beyond with customer service!
 
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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
Kinda what I was thinking...I can get that with my little Drolet 1400i in the fireplace!

To OP, does Woodstock have anything of interest to you? They are pretty close to you and well known for going above and beyond with customer service!
I will check out Woodstock and I appreciate the input.
 

davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
In regards to the above discussion, I would see if you can get the installer of the next insert to measure draft (which needs to happen when the fire is burning, so when the current insert is still installed). It would be useful to know that draft is within specs. (And it can be hard to do with an insert, so better on the old one in case some parts need to be altered to do it.)
I will visit the installer tomorrow and see if they offer this service.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
93,171
South Puget Sound, WA
I will check out Woodstock and I appreciate the input.
Woodstock does not make an insert, only freestanding stoves.

The PE and Regency are both secondary burn stoves, but they have quite different internal designs.

I second the suggestion to get the draft checked with the current stove burning.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
7,128
NE Ohio
Woodstock does not make an insert, only freestanding stoves.
That's true...I wonder if between the adjustable height legs and top or rear flue connection that some models have there is something in their offerings that would still be of interest? Guess it depend on the dimensions of the fireplace, and how tied OP is to the traditional insert (with faceplate) look...
 
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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
In regards to the above discussion, I would see if you can get the installer of the next insert to measure draft (which needs to happen when the fire is burning, so when the current insert is still installed). It would be useful to know that draft is within specs. (And it can be hard to do with an insert, so better on the old one in case some parts need to be altered to do it.)
I do wonder if the newer stoves are less easy breathing, so if there is a strong draft the newer stove would have more resistance to that draft. I'll still inquire about getting it measured .
That's true...I wonder if between the adjustable height legs and top or rear flue connection that some models have there is something in their offerings that would still be of interest? Guess it depend on the dimensions of the fireplace, and how tied OP is to the traditional insert (with faceplate) look...
Really want something functional and have some latitude on looks. Fireplace is 28 in high and 40 in wide. 20 in deep. So I don't know if a rear exit on one of these could work. It would be interesting if and it would be a look that my wife might like as well. From what I have read inserts are the best way to go for the situation I have. Not sure if that is true or not.
 

brenndatomu

Minister of Fire
Aug 21, 2013
7,128
NE Ohio
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MongoMongoson

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2021
288
Wisconsin
The new Summit is not less easy breathing. I can tell you that. We have less chimney than you do and had issues with our Summit trying to run away on us until I installed a damper. If you go Summit, please be aware that it does breath easily and you will likely need to do something about draft for that stove.
 
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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
The new Summit is not less easy breathing. I can tell you that. We have less chimney than you do and had issues with our Summit trying to run away on us until I installed a damper. If you go Summit, please be aware that it does breath easily and you will likely need to do something about draft for that stove.
Thank you!!!!

Does seem smart to have a damper installed....... Can't hurt right?

How does it get controlled. Do they drill a hole in the backer plate and a lever stick through? Is there even enough room to install one? Will keep learning!
 

MongoMongoson

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2021
288
Wisconsin
Well, mine is the freestanding version so a damper for me is a much simpler installation.

I bet bholler can answer that question. I don't know of how they do it with an insert.
 
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davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
Well, mine is the freestanding version so a damper for me is a much simpler installation.

I bet bholler can answer that question. I don't know of how they do it with an insert.
Instead of spending money to have it measured, I can put that money to adding a damper. Worst I do is run it opened if not needed. There is very little room for a damper above the unit. 28" high opening.
 
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MongoMongoson

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2021
288
Wisconsin
How much does it cost to have the draft measured? The process is not super complicated. I have the tool to do it. I will probably never use it again. If you want to measure it yourself and pay shipping both ways you can borrow it.

 

davidmsem

Minister of Fire
Oct 30, 2014
544
New haven, Connecticut
How much does it cost to have the draft measured? The process is not super complicated. I have the tool to do it. I will probably never use it again. If you want to measure it yourself and pay shipping both ways you can borrow it.


Love the cat next to the fire!!!! I'm an engineer, would love to test it. If you are serious I would pay the shipping. Extremely nice of you and I'm replacing a unit that went bad. Some here think it was drafting too much. I would return it right away.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,279
Southern IN

Sometimes we get blown out of this room when we want to be here and that would be less so with the princess it sounds. Very much appreciated. Great thoughts
You mentioned using fans to move heat; Have you tried a small desk fan on the floor, outside the stove room, blowing (low speed) cool, dense air into the stove room through the bottom of the doorway? That will force warmer, lighter air out the top of the doorway, boosting the natural convection that is already happening because warm air rises. If the fan is on low, it won't disturb the natural stratification in which the cooler air is low, where you are sitting. Not sure if the stove blower could possibly disrupt this...?
After years of running a cat stove, I got my SIL a PE Alderlea on the basis of very few moving parts, no cat replacement expense, and build quality. She's very happy with it, and it seems to heat for a LONG time in the coaling phase of the burn.
Instead of spending money to have it measured, I can put that money to adding a damper. Worst I do is run it opened if not needed. There is very little room for a damper above the unit. 28" high opening.
One damper doesn't cut a lot of draft. I have two dampers in my SIL's connector pipe and it cuts additional draft. That would be tough to do on an insert, though. I'd have to believe that tall chimney has a very strong draft, but you'd know that better than I from first-hand experience.
I won't go into some of the other ways to reduce draft, if excessive draft IS an issue. Now, it might be less of an issue with the BK, since you can cut the air lower in a cat than a non-cat. High draft could still be a problem for a cat stove, I think.
I've run four different cat stoves over the past 20 years, but my next stove will be a non-cat of simple design. To each, his own.
 
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