Need a beautiful lifetime stove for SHTF scenario.

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Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
19,304
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
How much is a Blaze King Catalyst now a days? Expect to pay that every other year. I’d be looking at steel non cats with a 2 cu ft fire box.
200$ each but that cost is more than repaid by wood savings. The dang things only last about 12000 hours whether that takes you 2 years or 100. “Years” is really an asinine way to estimate.

People preparing for SHTF type things are really varied. To some folks that means 3 days without power, some people think they can actually prepare for being the only person left on earth. As such, we just have to try and help this guy without imposing our SHTF beliefs.

My last noncat was a stone stove, about ready to be trashed due to wear after just 6 years! I’ve gotten much longer life from my cat stove.
 
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bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,094
central pa
200$ each but that cost is more than repaid by wood savings. The dang things only last about 12000 hours whether that takes you 2 years or 100. “Years” is really an asinine way to estimate.

People preparing for SHTF type things are really varied. To some folks that means 3 days without power, some people think they can actually prepare for being the only person left on earth. As such, we just have to try and help this guy without imposing our SHTF beliefs.

My last noncat was a stone stove, about ready to be trashed due to wear after just 6 years! I’ve gotten much longer life from my cat stove.
If you see wood savings yes it may cover the cost of cat replacement. If you don't see wood savings it is just an added cost
 
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stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
1,922
Long Island NY
Efficiency is not the most critical issue here (and modern non-cat stoves have similar efficiencies); a shtf scenario requires the simplest system there is. The more parts you have, the more can break. A set of tubes can be finagled by someone with a decent toolset. A cat cannot. Extra (bypass) valves can malfunction too.

If one truly wants to be self-sufficient, a cat stove is not the way to go, imo.

These are just different requirements leading to a different best advice.
 

Prof

Minister of Fire
Oct 18, 2011
582
Western PA
I like considering shtf scenarios. Couldn't an EPA stove like my Summit basically be turned into something comparable to an old smoke dragon if I removed the baffle and increased the air going into the stove?
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,094
central pa
I like considering shtf scenarios. Couldn't an EPA stove like my Summit basically be turned into something comparable to an old smoke dragon if I removed the baffle and increased the air going into the stove?
It could be but why? Most tube stoves are extremely durable
 

Prof

Minister of Fire
Oct 18, 2011
582
Western PA
It could be but why? Most tube stoves are extremely durable
I know--just wondering about earlier posts about the advantages of a fisher or other such stove in a shtf scenario.
 

Hermit

New Member
Sep 10, 2021
35
Canada
Man the amount of options and opinions is overwhelming. Just when you think you're narrowing it down, everything gets blown apart. I guess I'm just gonna be freezing me ass all winter while I research
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,277
Southern IN
Man the amount of options and opinions is overwhelming. Just when you think you're narrowing it down, everything gets blown apart. I guess I'm just gonna be freezing me ass all winter while I research
Better to take the time now to learn, then make a well-informed decision as to what will meet your needs. Also factor in the possibility the S may never HTF. ;)
 
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Todd

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
9,447
NW Wisconsin
Lopi Endeavor, Pacific Energy Super or Alderlea T5, Regency 2450, Quadrafire Millenium 3100, Osburn 2000.
All great recommendations , would also add Jotul F45, it has a very well built stainless baffle system and long burn times.
 
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BKVP

Minister of Fire
We made secondary combustion stoves, not just catalytic models. Tubes and baffles are parts sold by every single manufacturer. Some are warranted to a greater degree than others. To assume these parts are not prone to ever fail, well that's not accurate. I can appreciate catalytic combustors can fail as well. But I'll clarify "fail". It's different than having a depreciation of ability to burn exactly the same as day 1.

Failure was rampant beginning way back in 1984. Oregon passed emissions regulations and hundreds of manufacturers placed cats into stoves. The vast majority used one of two ceramic substrates. If you look at these substrates with an electron microscope before washcoat and precious metals are applied, they look rather smooth. Once the washcoat and precious metals are applied, they take on the appearance of an English muffin. This adds tremendous surface area and creates turbulence.

When repeatedly subjected to temperatures in excess of 1600F, a conversion of alpha alumina to gamma alumina takes place and the English muffin appearance flattens out loosing tremendous surface area. It usually won't be long before the combustor begins thermal degradation. Lest you feel the metal substrates are "better", the same loss of surface area still happens and rather than fracture, they become less effective and can start to plug. This is the truest meaning of "fail".

Now, most secondary combustion stoves are build robustly. I have a friend that made one of the highest regarded wood stoves on the market. Due to emissions regulations requiring fewer and fewer P.M. concentrations, the minimum allowable air setting have been increased, meaning you can't cover as much of the hole as you could previously. I and others watched in person what happened to that incredible stove when temps dropped below -20F. It began to glow...flue collar and areas of the top. The owner of the stove company was stunned.

Stack effect, the difference between inside and outside temperatures, increases as that difference increases. Mind you this is precisely what caused so many cat stoves to fail and even a few, less robust design secondary combustion stoves to "fail".

I can appreciate that every stove made today is cleaner burning, more efficient and better designed than ever before. And what must happen is design and engineering need to keep up with the influences or impacts wood heaters are subjected by ever changing regulations.

Thank you
BKVP
 
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EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,465
SE North Carolina
I and others watched in person what happened to that incredible stove when temps dropped below -20F. It began to glow...flue collar and areas of the top.
This is this SHTF scenario we all should be considering. How long can a stove run safely at this temp?
 

BKVP

Minister of Fire

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
1,922
Long Island NY

Lol. Excrement hit the fan...

But it was my understanding that he OP was talking about society collapsing, not some stove overfiring situation. (See discussion about stocking up on spare parts).
 

Todd

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
9,447
NW Wisconsin
We made secondary combustion stoves, not just catalytic models. Tubes and baffles are parts sold by every single manufacturer. Some are warranted to a greater degree than others. To assume these parts are not prone to ever fail, well that's not accurate. I can appreciate catalytic combustors can fail as well. But I'll clarify "fail". It's different than having a depreciation of ability to burn exactly the same as day 1.

Failure was rampant beginning way back in 1984. Oregon passed emissions regulations and hundreds of manufacturers placed cats into stoves. The vast majority used one of two ceramic substrates. If you look at these substrates with an electron microscope before washcoat and precious metals are applied, they look rather smooth. Once the washcoat and precious metals are applied, they take on the appearance of an English muffin. This adds tremendous surface area and creates turbulence.

When repeatedly subjected to temperatures in excess of 1600F, a conversion of alpha alumina to gamma alumina takes place and the English muffin appearance flattens out loosing tremendous surface area. It usually won't be long before the combustor begins thermal degradation. Lest you feel the metal substrates are "better", the same loss of surface area still happens and rather than fracture, they become less effective and can start to plug. This is the truest meaning of "fail".

Now, most secondary combustion stoves are build robustly. I have a friend that made one of the highest regarded wood stoves on the market. Due to emissions regulations requiring fewer and fewer P.M. concentrations, the minimum allowable air setting have been increased, meaning you can't cover as much of the hole as you could previously. I and others watched in person what happened to that incredible stove when temps dropped below -20F. It began to glow...flue collar and areas of the top. The owner of the stove company was stunned.

Stack effect, the difference between inside and outside temperatures, increases as that difference increases. Mind you this is precisely what caused so many cat stoves to fail and even a few, less robust design secondary combustion stoves to "fail".

I can appreciate that every stove made today is cleaner burning, more efficient and better designed than ever before. And what must happen is design and engineering need to keep up with the influences or impacts wood heaters are subjected by ever changing regulations.

Thank you
BKVP

Good points! A little insurance for these over drafting incidents would be a pipe damper or dare I say it, a slight mod of the air intake.
 

BKVP

Minister of Fire
Good points! A little insurance for these over drafting incidents would be a pipe damper or dare I say it, a slight mod of the air intake.
EPA’S greatest concern. And they follow these threads.....
 

BKVP

Minister of Fire
Lol. Excrement hit the fan...

But it was my understanding that he OP was talking about society collapsing, not some stove overfiring situation. (See discussion about stocking up on spare parts).
Thanks for clarifying.
 
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bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,094
central pa
We made secondary combustion stoves, not just catalytic models. Tubes and baffles are parts sold by every single manufacturer. Some are warranted to a greater degree than others. To assume these parts are not prone to ever fail, well that's not accurate. I can appreciate catalytic combustors can fail as well. But I'll clarify "fail". It's different than having a depreciation of ability to burn exactly the same as day 1.

Failure was rampant beginning way back in 1984. Oregon passed emissions regulations and hundreds of manufacturers placed cats into stoves. The vast majority used one of two ceramic substrates. If you look at these substrates with an electron microscope before washcoat and precious metals are applied, they look rather smooth. Once the washcoat and precious metals are applied, they take on the appearance of an English muffin. This adds tremendous surface area and creates turbulence.

When repeatedly subjected to temperatures in excess of 1600F, a conversion of alpha alumina to gamma alumina takes place and the English muffin appearance flattens out loosing tremendous surface area. It usually won't be long before the combustor begins thermal degradation. Lest you feel the metal substrates are "better", the same loss of surface area still happens and rather than fracture, they become less effective and can start to plug. This is the truest meaning of "fail".

Now, most secondary combustion stoves are build robustly. I have a friend that made one of the highest regarded wood stoves on the market. Due to emissions regulations requiring fewer and fewer P.M. concentrations, the minimum allowable air setting have been increased, meaning you can't cover as much of the hole as you could previously. I and others watched in person what happened to that incredible stove when temps dropped below -20F. It began to glow...flue collar and areas of the top. The owner of the stove company was stunned.

Stack effect, the difference between inside and outside temperatures, increases as that difference increases. Mind you this is precisely what caused so many cat stoves to fail and even a few, less robust design secondary combustion stoves to "fail".

I can appreciate that every stove made today is cleaner burning, more efficient and better designed than ever before. And what must happen is design and engineering need to keep up with the influences or impacts wood heaters are subjected by ever changing regulations.

Thank you
BKVP
Yes tubes do occasionally need replaced. But honestly in 10 years I have replaced a total of 7 tubes over hundreds of stoves. Now baffles do need replaced more often on many brands.i have seen more bad tubes but they were in stoves that were severely abused and had much more severe issues than the tubes. We actually have a pretty big stock pile of good tubes from stoves we have scrapped
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
90,531
South Puget Sound, WA
Back in mind-80s during the first years of EPA phase 1 stoves many used mild steel for tubes and baffles. They often didn't stand up over time. All the major stove makers switched to stainless tubes and baffles and that pretty much ended the issue except for the constantly overfired situations. It's been that way for a couple decades now. I'm not a fan of fragile baffle boards, period. Nuf said there.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
26,094
central pa
Back in mind-80s during the first years of EPA phase 1 stoves many used mild steel for tubes and baffles. They often didn't stand up over time. All the major stove makers switched to stainless tubes and baffles and that pretty much ended the issue except for the constantly overfired situations. It's been that way for a couple decades now. I'm not a fan of fragile baffle boards, period. Nuf said there.
Agreed I don't understand why so many manufacturers still use the 1/2" fiber board baffles.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
90,531
South Puget Sound, WA
Agreed I don't understand why so many manufacturers still use the 1/2" fiber board baffles.
It's a cheap way to achieve high insulation values and in some designs it may allow for a bit larger firebox volume. The cynical side of me says it's also a revenue stream, like printer cartridges.
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
1,465
SE North Carolina