Princess brick replacement

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Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Hearth Supporter
Dec 28, 2006
20,940
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
After 10 years of full time heating about 9 months per year almost all of the soft pumice bricks in my princess had deteriorated to the point of embarrassment. Most were cracked but all had “corroded” or lost thickness and started turning back into dirt.

I went to the local masonry yard and they had one firebrick option. No description on whether it was pumice or not for 2.78 each. The bricks ended up being lighter density than the hard ones in my Englander but noticeably denser than BK factory bricks. I think they’re pumice. Okay.

The old bricks crumbled as they came out. It was sad. The princess has two layers of bottom bricks and the bottom layer was in great shape so I reused them along with the front bricks. On a princess with a 6” deep belly there are bricks in front that did not deteriorate for some reason. I reused them too.

There is lots of space behind the unsupported side bricks that fills up with creosote flakes. These unsupported are easy to break so don’t feel bad if yours are cracked in the middle.

Underneath the bottom layer is a thin felt pad that is easily damaged so be careful.

The only trick is that the center floor bricks need to be custom milled to allow the ash door lid to set down right. It’s super easy to mill these bricks so no big deal.

Tools used are shown. A 4” diamond tile saw and disc grinder. Lots of dust.

I didn’t find any firebox corrosion. Just surface gunk.

Princess brick replacement Princess brick replacement Princess brick replacement Princess brick replacement
 
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Princess brick replacement Princess brick replacement Princess brick replacement Princess brick replacement
 
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I've seen that pink tone on used bricks before..

All sides of those bottom layer bricks were red like that. The top layer and side bricks were all light tan on all sides. I can’t imagine that BK used separate bricks but who knows.

I’m going to do my best to not scrape the new bricks with tools. Leave that 1/2” layer to protect the soft bricks.
 
Looks real good. Nicely done.
I’m going to do my best to not scrape the new bricks with tools. Leave that 1/2” layer to protect the soft bricks.
That's a good plan. Also, try to avoid slamming wood into a hot stove. That can crack the rear bricks quickly.

There is another T6 owner here that went through a set of brick in just a few years. I just replaced the back ones last season due to above reason, but the rest are still ok after 14 seasons. The difference as far as I can tell is that I always leave ash on the firebox floor and clean as infrequently as I can get away with. Last season this was once per cord (Thank you doug fir) The other stove got cleaned out every few days.

The new firebricks may be a hybrid. They look finer-grained than pumice firebrick. At that price, I may have to drop down to your local masonry supply store. Pumice firebricks are about $5-6 each (and $10 oem priced). Eventually, I'll need to do a full replacement in the T6 too, but we burn about half the amount of wood per season that the Princess has seen so that may still be a few seasons later.
 
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I’ve never thrown wood into this stove, the soft bricks just deteriorated into dust. With the long burn times i end up reloading on a warm or cold stove. Almost all of the side and back bricks were cracked in the center. The bottom bricks came out as rubble. I am probably most guilty of overpacking the stove which could easily pop the side bricks since those are only supported at the top and bottom, hollow behind.

90 months of burning. It’s expected.

Like the new transmission I just ordered for my f350. Painful but expected after exceeding the expected service life.
 
Like the new transmission I just ordered for my f350. Painful but expected after exceeding the expected service life.
Hopefully you went with one of the aftermarket "built" options...there are some really good ones out there for the 7.3 (which IIRC, you have?)
 
Hopefully you went with one of the aftermarket "built" options...there are some really good ones out there for the 7.3 (which IIRC, you have?)

I almost went with a whole new truck! The factory build transmission lasted me this long so I didn’t opt for any special “built” option for the replacement. I’m not a hot rodder but the software changes I made about 100,000 miles ago turned the transmission into a great shifter. This old girl from the turn of the century has the 7.3 diesel with no emissions controls. Which makes it pretty valuable.
 
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Highbeam, great job after a decade of burning.

The PE1006 you have had 2-layers in the bottom. Not so with the PE32, which is a single layer.

As for the 7.3/6 Speed Manual... I paid $34,000 cash in John Day OR for my truck, with 1 mile on the odometer back in 2000. A week ago my neighbor offered me $22,000 for the truck. No way I'm selling it, with a replacement costing well over $90,000 and no manual option!

With 247K miles, she's still running strong and only 1 clutch replacement thus far. This truck has hauled over 120 cords off the mountain.

BKVP
 
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With 247K miles, she's still running strong and only 1 clutch replacement thus far
You're getting close to injector replacement time there...
 
You're getting close to injector replacement time there...
I had them tested about 2 month ago. The local diesel shop ran their computer diagnostics and came back and said they are in great shop. But they did say time for glow plugs in the next 25K (I replaced them about 75K ago).

BKVP
 
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I had them tested about 2 month ago. The local diesel shop ran their computer diagnostics and came back and said they are in great shop. But they did say time for glow plugs in the next 25K (I replaced them about 75K ago).

BKVP

I replaced all 8 glow plugs and the relay less than a year ago. Pretty easy job. Most of mine were not functioning and with all 8 working it starts up much nicer and cleaner.

I'm at 238,000 and that high market valuation helps me feel better about paying for a new transmission. Stinks to drive a little nissan rogue to work with a really weird Continuously Variable Transmission.
 
I replaced all 8 glow plugs and the relay less than a year ago. Pretty easy job. Most of mine were not functioning and with all 8 working it starts up much nicer and cleaner.
Geez, I'm surprised it would start at all...V8 diesels start poorly with even just 2-3 GP bad!
FYI, Auto Zone carries Motorcraft GP for $10.99/ea...pretty good price!
Sorry, didn't mean to derail the Princess thread
 
Geez, I'm surprised it would start at all...V8 diesels start poorly with even just 2-3 GP bad!
FYI, Auto Zone carries Motorcraft GP for $10.99/ea...pretty good price!
Sorry, didn't mean to derail the Princess thread

It started fine unassisted into the teens on just 4 glow plugs but happier with the block heater. Big cloud of white smoke that is gone with all 8 plugs working. They're pretty easy to test from outside the valve covers but replacing them is under the covers. I got the motorcraft plugs from autozone. Verified that they were authentic too, there seems to be a problem with counterfeits.