Everything Drolet Tundra - Heatmax...

brenndatomu Posted By brenndatomu, Feb 8, 2015 at 9:42 PM

  1. Woodworm21

    Woodworm21
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    Aug 23, 2017
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    Just an update for anyone interested in the Tundra 2. My thoughts so far after about a month of moderate use is that this is a great unit. Very even heat distribution and efficient wood consumption. Even the rooms on the opposite end of my house are heated equally. I have a thermostat connected on the main floor. Anyone familiar with wood units know it's difficult to control the heat output once they get burning. I typically turn up the thermostat up when lighting or adding wood. After 5 minutes or so I turn it back down to close the damper and let it burn steady. The nights are getting frosty here now in Eastern Canada, and this unit is keeping my house at a toasty 25-27 celcius burning seasoned fir, spruce, birch mixture.
     
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  2. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    I hope everyone has had a great year so far. With the cold nights, I have started having overnight fires within the past week or so. It got me thinking on my stove install - as I have had a chimney liner on my mind for awhile. I had a very highly rated local chimney company out to give me an estimate for a SS liner.

    Here's my setup -
    Tundra installed in basement of a 2 story home.
    26.6' tall interior chimney. Inside spacing of current clay liner is 6.5"x9.5"

    I know everyone highly recommends a 6" liner for these stoves. I have paid attention to everyone's suggestions as far as other items that reduce draft (upstairs windows open, bathroom fans, and clothes dryers running), and I even open my basement window on the upwind side of the house, but I still have smoke/fumes spill back into the house if I open the stove door more than 1/3rd open - So I try to be quick when loading the stove but you still get some smoke. I do not have the proper amount of draft unless I have a good hot fire going.

    The chimney company owner examined my setup and simply advised me to clean my chimney, and tape off my barometric damper and see if I have an improvement. He liked that I had taken consideration of everything else - and even liked the temp controller that I built (thanks to this thread). The chimney is not spotless but is pretty clean - and I have never seen the BD open since I adjusted it. He said they would install a liner if I wanted, but he was concerned that I may not be completely satisfied with the results and did not want a dissatisfied customer - this was due to his concern that the ovalized liner would almost be too small. I did the math and ovalizing a 6" liner to 5"x7" reduces the cross sectional area of the liner by ~5% if I recall correctly, so I don't think that 5% would be a significant size reduction.

    As far as the fit/installation, my chimney as it is will likely not fit a round 6" un-insulated liner. He said they often they bust out the clay liners in order to make additional room for a liner, but due to my offset around my fireplace, he did not want to do that - I wouldn't allow it anyways..

    The issue I have run into, as I originally considered doing the chimney lining myself, is that my current chimney size is small enough to make installation of a liner difficult. I have read about using ovalized liner but even ovalized liner, after insulation, would be very tight fit in that 6.5" liner, not to mention any sloppy mortar joints. He said - and I agree with his assessment, that it would be a very frustrating install regardless of whether I do it or they do. His recommendation was to clean my chimney every 2 months, maybe install a basement cold air supply from outside, on my west wall, and if I ever have a chimney fire then that will necessitate removing the clay liner and installing a insulated 6". It is further complicated by a very steep roof pitch.

    I did find what I believe is 1 minor air leak in my flue pipe and will address it - but I don't think this leak existed last burning season. Otherwise, what's everyone's thoughts?
     
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  3. Woodworm21

    Woodworm21
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    Aug 23, 2017
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    I'm no expert but I usually jar a window a few minutes before lighting. Also if I'm lighting and everything is cooled down I usually light a piece of cardboard or paper in the back of the firebox and this helps send the draft up the pipe. Other than that when I add wood to the fire I turn the stat up to open the air inlet and open the door relatively slow at first. With a hot fire I don't get alot of smoke back up at all. I'm running 6 inch flue into a 7 inch prefab stainless insulated chimney.
     
  4. maple1

    maple1
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    I don't have a Tundra. But that sounds like a tall chimney that should give lots of draft even if not insulated - since it is inside. Have you ever measured it with a manometer? Did you try closing the baro damper? Sounds like your chimney guy is being pretty straight up with you.

    You can't really tell for sure without measuring with a manometer. If it is insufficient, I would have said bust out the clay & put an insulated steel liner in - but not sure what your fireplace offset comment means exactly.
     
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  5. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    What's your stove pipe like? 90s in it? How long? Have pics of your setup?
    An interior chimney like that should suck like a hoover...but a liner will only make it better. You shouldn't have to ovalize it much.
     
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  6. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    I have a manometer permanently plumbed into my flue pipe. The draft varies with the conditions of course. Right now, on a few small pieces of wood taking off right now - I did have a fire overnight but only had a few small coals left, 36°F outside, I'm at .03 draft.

    As far as the fireplace offset - My wood furnace is in my basement. I do have a fireplace on the ground floor - so my basement chimney for the wood furnace goes up, then offset around the top of the fireplace. The guy explained that in offsets, with the tool they use to bust out the clay liners, they are operating "blind" and can do excessive damage including busting out more than just the clay liner. He had an example of a house that was poorly built that when they bust through the chimney, it came out in the customer's kitchen.

    My concern is that even if I ovalize to 5", once I insulate it is back up to 6-6.5" and that will be too tight of a fit to feed it down.

    I did tape off the BD as he suggested, and I noticed a small gap where the flue enters the thimble so I secured that. With a small fire going, if I go around every joint in the flue with a lighter, there is a couple spots where the flame sucks into the connection joints, but not what I would consider excessive - but it is not air tight either.

    The guy commented that I have one of the nicest stoves he's seen while in the business, and was very impressed by the temp controller as well.
     

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  7. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    I would think uninsulated would be fine on an interior chimney...should work a lot better than what you have now.
    One thought, how far is that stove pipe shoved into the breech? I have heard of people having issues with draft and it ended up being that the pipe was shoved way too far into the chimney connection...
     
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  8. maple1

    maple1
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    Ya, 0.03 is not very much draft. But I think you're saying that is on coals? What is it mid-burn?

    Is there a cleanout at the bottom? Well sealed?

    You might be kind of between a rock & hard place. Tall chimney, but all that cold clay plus what is sounding like some bends for that offset thing might be too much to overcome. (You aren't saying that the fireplace & furnace are on the same flue are you?). That's assuming the top of the chimney is in specs, like far enough from the roofline etc..

    You can get draft inducers, that might be a help for when lighting and reloading. No experience with one, but it was suggested as an alternative to me if my draft situation didn't quite work out. But I was OK without one.
     
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  9. KC Matt

    KC Matt
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    Oct 29, 2016
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    I will update this thread as well. I have a late Tundra 1 running 3 Johnson Control 420 boxes using supply temperature to regulate the fan speed, damper, and fan on. It's all run through the factory limit switch. After running all last winter no cracks have appeared, firebrick looks perfect and aside from a little dust inside the firebox, this furnace looks new. Last year I cleaned the chimney once and got a cup or two of soot and I will clean it again tomorrow. I'll also install the updated fire brick that's been setting here all year.

    The control system is a necessity for these furnaces in my view. Before the controllers I was sorely disappointed with this stove before the controllers but now love it.
     
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  10. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    Yeah that was my take also...I was disappointed until I installed the temp and fan speed controller...big difference...
     
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  11. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    I hadn't really considered uninsulated, but I agree with you that it would probably be sufficient, just due to it being a warm interior chimney. I have read of someone on here who packed the top 3 feet of the clay flue with insulation around their SS chimney liner, just to hold as much heat as possible in the chimney below the top plate. The only thing is, I'm not 100% on clearance to combustible requirements, but my house is built around the chimney so the chimney company owner yesterday said it "required" insulation to meet code for CTC. But with the SS liner and the temp controller on the stove, I wouldn't be so worried about over temp as long as I kept the chimney clean.

    My flue pipe is not pushed too far into the thimble, in fact I don't think it was far enough in. Since hitting it further in I think I have a little better draft than yesterday.

    Sorry, .03 was on start of my morning reload. So the chimney was cooled off some but not cold. I am running around .05-.06 during operation, with 350°F flue temp (damper closed). I can get another .01 if I open the basement window. As I mentioned above your quote, I think my flue pipe was not sealed in the thimble. It is BETTER now - but still not 100% IMO.

    You're correct that I'm not saying the 2 are on the same flue.
     
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  12. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    Aug 21, 2013
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    True on the CTC. But better with a liner in it than the way it is now...IMO...
    BTW, my draft drops like that later in the burn too...I still have no smoke roll out issues...
    If your draft is 0.01 better with the window open then I'd be installing a fresh air intake
     
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  13. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    According to the Tundra manual, a minimum draft of .04" W.C. is required at all times. I definitely don't meet that requirement.

    I'm wondering about ovalizing a 6" or running a 5.5" liner. I will do the math to calculate the difference in cross sectional area.
     
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  14. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    Stupid question. Is a fresh air intake plumbed direct to the wood furnace, or just into the basement room that the stove is in, in general?
     
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  15. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    Some stoves can be connected directly, Tundra doesn't have a kit for this, so it would just be to the general area of the furnace.
    You want to put a cold air trap in so cold air doesn't flood the basement. I have a 6" FAI, (or OAK) but I think a 4" would be enough unless your house is really tight or you have a lot of other things (fans, etc) drawing air too.
    Here is some suggestions from the Yukon manual.
    upload_2017-10-28_15-12-48.png upload_2017-10-28_15-12-48.png
     
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  16. DoubleB

    DoubleB
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    Mar 4, 2014
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    @TDD11 ,
    In your pictures in post 2281, your tee appears slanted to the rear so your baro must also be slanted to the rear, which I think can mess up the reading. Simple fix if you twist the tee 1/4 turn to either side.

    I have an uninsulated liner and seems to be fine with me (I haven't tried my Tundra without it for comparison, though).

    @KC Matt , I don't remember if you've posted about this yet. Do you have a schematic? Sounds really interesting.
     
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  17. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    I seem to recall the BD manual stating that the shaft that the damper pivots on, has to be installed horizontal. I'll see if I can find this in the manual when I get back to a computer. It's a vozelgang for reference.

    I think I mentioned earlier but I never notice the damper open.
     
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  18. maple1

    maple1
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    Yes that is correct.

    Seems I have heard on here before some questions about the vozelgang quality but not sure. But taping it shut then seeing the impact of that on the manometer would determine that.
     
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  19. TDD11

    TDD11
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    Oct 24, 2016
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    Ok, so weekend update. I have had the BD taped off and also closed off that gap where the flue connector is pressed into the thimble.

    During operation I have .05" W.C which is great. If I open the window, and slowly open the door, my smoke rollout is reduced a lot from last week. At times I haven't seen any smoke roll out at all with the door wide open - although I have been trying to use my nose to see if I can smell any fumes - so far it is GREATLY reduced. I attribute it mostly to that gap that I found. I'm tempted to replace the BD with regular pipe, but if I do go with a liner, than I may need the BD because I would probably have overdraft.

    I guess I need to decide how I would want to do a fresh air intake into my basement, in the room the wood furnace is installed in. It makes a .01" WC difference according to my manometer, just by opening the window. Not to mention it would negate the effect of the bathroom shower fan or dryer running and puling my draft down further. Do we all agree on that?

    My next question then is what size liner would you guys go with? Uninsulated 6" would be very tight. I was wondering about minor ovalizing of it, but I don't know what sort of headache the ovalizing creates when it comes to the Tee connector and Top plate connections. I know that ovalized kits and the adapter fittings quickly increase the price. Lets hear your thoughts? If I'm going to do this, I need to pull the trigger and order something soon.
     
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  20. maple1

    maple1
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    Is this a new install? This will be the first winter for it?

    I might be tempted to go as-is for this winter - your draft should improve as the weather gets colder.

    For intake air, I have a window right behind my boiler. I open it a crack, and stuff some FG insulation in the crack. Air is able to be pulled in but it stops big drafts from coming in. Not likely a pro grade solution but it's what I do.
     
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  21. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    I'd be temped to order a round liner and try it. If no go then you can DIY ovalize it...it wouldn't take much...there are lots of DIY ovalizing youtube vids. You just work it back round out on the ends to install the tee and cap then...
     
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  22. TDD11

    TDD11
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    This will be my 2nd winter with the stove. I believe I fired it up in mid-late December of last year. I don't really recall having the draft issues as much initially as I did later in the winter/early spring last year.

    Great point about it not being super cold yet. Although tonight after cleaning my burn tubes and flue connector, and having a basement window on the west side of the house open, I was hitting .08" W.C. at maybe 250°F flue temps into a start up. I was impressed although that is certainly not the norm. I just need to determine the best way to install that fresh air supply vent.
    I thought about trying to form it back to round, enough to get the connectors on. I wasn't sure how easy that would be. I have a very steep roof, though I think I could do it with 2 ladders with ridge hooks. I just thought I better get the kit ordered before the weather gets too cold.
     
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  23. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    I guess really you would put the tee body on, and then ovalize from there up...but leave the top 6-12" of liner round for clamping the top plate/cap assembly on...I assume it would be a top down install...the tee body has to go on before the install...the tee snout gets clamped on once the liner is in place. You could test fit by finding the liner diameter and then lowering a piece of pipe, paint can, etc down to see if it clears or if there is any mortar that needs broken off
     
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  24. KC Matt

    KC Matt
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    Oct 29, 2016
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    I've never drawn a schematic or taken pictures since there seemed to be little interest in my setup when I first posted about it. I will do so this evening and post a couple of pictures. The install is ugly because it was intended to be temporary/testing piece but it worked so well I never had the desire to rework the boxes.

    How do you draw a schematic MS Paint?
     
  25. KC Matt

    KC Matt
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    Oct 29, 2016
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    I did get some pictures, and I learned something very valuable today. In preparation for taking pictures I started to seal up some of the duct work to impress all of you, my internet friends. What I quickly discovered is that for each joint sealed up, the stove became noticeably more quiet. That made me realize the stove could be losing a lot of heat so I took a long lighter and started looking for leaks. Wow, was that an eye opener! For anybody who has not done exactly that test, I strongly suggest you do so immediately. The increase in efficiency was immediately noticeable and as I type this, I have the doors open because it's just too damned hot in here.

    Some of the leaks that would blow out the lighter were: the extra 8 holes on top of the plenum that surround the ducts that were used- these were screw holes to hold the block off plates. Where the chimney stub passes through the heat exchanger: THIS WAS A MASSIVE LEAK! Where the starter collars meet the ductwork. Where the filter adapter meets the furnace body. At every pipe joint. On and on...

    Seriously, if you have not spent the time to track down all of the leaks in your ductwork you are losing a tremendous amount of heat. It took 3 hours to seal up the duct work you will see in these pictures. I used half a tube of duct seal and probably 100 feet of foil tape. I also bought some hi heat concrete based caulk that's certified to 750* to seal the massive gap between the chimney connection and the body of the stove.
     
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