Lopi Liberty welds

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Deppizzymo

Member
Feb 28, 2022
55
Missouri
Should I be concerned about these welds on my Lopi Liberty that was just installed? One looks like an actual gap between fire box and the top plate and the other has a glob that has a fissure in it you can actually see into. I thought it might cause issues with controlling the air if it made the fire box less air tight.
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ABMax24

Minister of Fire
Sep 18, 2019
1,701
Grande Prairie, Alberta, Canada
The first one, how deep is it? It doesn't appear to be a full thickness discontinuity, but I can't really tell by the picture. if not it probably won't be too much of an issue. Although this is technically a weld fault called "undercut" or sometime called "lack of fusion".

The second one could be a crack, but it could also be silicon slag islands left over from the welding process that weren't removed in blasting. Try gently scraping it off, if it is a slag island it will come off fairly easily. If not its a crack, and I'd be concerned that the crack will grow over time. If you can actually see into it I would call Lopi, that's not cool and I wouldn't accept that.
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
19,997
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
Often, these joints are welded inside and out. Is the seam behind these questionable welds welded?
 

Deppizzymo

Member
Feb 28, 2022
55
Missouri
Well I talked to the Liberty representative and they indicated that as long as I can't see light shining through using a flashlight to test from one side to another, it should be fine. I don't see any light shining through the gaps but I still don't like it. I may cover the gaps with some stove cement or something.
 

Ctwoodtick

Minister of Fire
Jun 5, 2015
1,781
Southeast CT
Perhaps ask for something in writing from the company, so that if it does ever become an issue, they can’t say you didn’t notify them during the warranty period.
 

Hoytman

Minister of Fire
Jan 6, 2020
513
Ohio
Show a picture a little further away so we can get a better idea where on the stove these cracks are.

You also may want to show this same sort of picture to Lopi, then as the other poster mentioned, get something in writing that it will be fine to use as is. Otherwise, no letter as such means DO NOT accept this stove or burn it as is. Make them or the dealer do something about it. If they can’t give you a letter stating they trust it, then you can’t trust it either. That puts the responsibility on them.

Keep all records of emails, and record phone calls (tell them you are recording the conversation). It’s just business.

It may not be a big deal, but it isn’t right. If it had a weld behind it on the inside then it also wouldn’t be such a concern. Lopi should be able to tell you if there is a weld behind it.

Also, some wood stoves may have a heat exchanger in the top (some coal stoves have this) and as such could be double layered above the firebox. At the moment I can’t think of any wood stove manufacturers that have this, BUT if they do then there also may be no cause for concern. Honestly, you would still need/want to call the manufacturer to get confirmation that the stove is ok to burn as is with a crack in the weld.

I have one stove that has a crack below a weld, and where the crack is it is fine because the stove has an outer layer of steel as well as an inner layer…making the outer crack purely cosmetic. However, the crack is an easy fix by drilling each end of the crack (crack is usually a tad further than can be seen) with a drill and filling the holes be welding them shut. You would also grind a “V” along the crack and also weld it back shut. Grind it all flat, then paint.

A lot depends on the length of the crack and the depth, as well as if you can see light through it, on whether or not the crack needs to be dealt with. Usually, if it is a crack cause by heating and cooling them it will likely get larger over time. If it’s a new stove having never had a fire in it, then the crack might have been caused by natural stresses of the weld itself.

Bottom line, if you’re not comfortable with it and it’s a new stove, then your dealer and Lopi should make it right for you some way, somehow.

By the way, if that is a new stove and they don’t make it right for you, then please let us know. I will them be getting rid of my used Lopi Liberty and I may not ever buy a new Lopi. You can be sure that you can show them this post also. I don’t mind you showing them at all. These things cost too much new for you to not be satisfied and/or have safety concerns.

I could easily fix something like that, BUT that isn’t the point. Not everyone has those skill sets to fix it. Lopi, at the least, should be able to ease your mind by giving you something in writing that the tiny crack is of no concern to you and your safety by giving you a letter telling you it is ok to use as is. They would shouldering any responsibility. Again, if they tell you it is no big deal, then a letter should also be no big deal. It’s just that easy to reassure you it will be fine.
 
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Deppizzymo

Member
Feb 28, 2022
55
Missouri
I appreciate all the advice. Every communication I have with them is via email so I have a representative from Lopi telling me it is safe to use. I just don't like that a new $7000 stove has a non-continuous weld visible to everyone who walks by it (no one is gonna see this or look for it but still...). I think post-COVID world has given us the worst of everything... poor workmanship/rushed labor/higher prices and this stove is kinda the result of that. The really ugly weld at the top is fortunately only connecting the plates to the jacket and therefore isn't going to cause me any issues. It's the gap under the weld on the bottom plates that I don't like. It does have welds on the inside as well but they are just tack welds/spot welds that don't cover the length of the plate. It does not go all the way through however as I cannot shine a light on one side and see to the other. I think the email saying "it's fine" will be ok. I'll dab some stove cement or high heat masonry caulk in there and move on with life.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
96,312
South Puget Sound, WA
$7000 stove or $7000 stove installation?
 

Hoytman

Minister of Fire
Jan 6, 2020
513
Ohio
I appreciate all the advice. Every communication I have with them is via email so I have a representative from Lopi telling me it is safe to use. I just don't like that a new $7000 stove has a non-continuous weld visible to everyone who walks by it (no one is gonna see this or look for it but still...). I think post-COVID world has given us the worst of everything... poor workmanship/rushed labor/higher prices and this stove is kinda the result of that. The really ugly weld at the top is fortunately only connecting the plates to the jacket and therefore isn't going to cause me any issues. It's the gap under the weld on the bottom plates that I don't like. It does have welds on the inside as well but they are just tack welds/spot welds that don't cover the length of the plate. It does not go all the way through however as I cannot shine a light on one side and see to the other. I think the email saying "it's fine" will be ok. I'll dab some stove cement or high heat masonry caulk in there and move on with life.
As stated, it’s an easy fix by weld or cement and really probably isn’t a big deal at all. It’s just the point of paying that much and not being totally satisfied. Some might call that persnickety, but it’s your money, not theirs that was spent on that stove. If cement satisfies you and you have record of it them all is well. Enjoy your stove.

Just to reiterate, the point of my post wasn’t to pick on that tiny gap/weld, but the fact you spent much hard earned cash on something you appeared concerned about. That’s a legitimate deal to me on a new stove fresh install…being satisfied. Now that you are satisfied and have piece of mind, you’ll feel better about it, and so do we.