Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: smokeyCityTeacher On: Thu Nov 26, 2009 2:05 pm

I've been reading claims made by wood cat stoves of 40 hour low burn times, efficiency above 80% and consistent low stack temp -- i.e. heat goes to the house not the chimney.

The question is - how much better is this than a good "air-tight" non-cat that gets 70%+ and has burn times of 5 - 8 hours on low burn ?

The cats with the top specs are as much as $1000 or more expensive than the good non cats.
Seems I could buy a lot of seasoned split hardwood for $1000.

Reminds me of buying a Prius. Yeah, you save a ton of money on gas but you pay that money up front (and a lot of it) up front instead of paying as you go over the life of the car. Thus you need to keep that car a long time to get your $$ back.

Anyone have a catalytic wood burner? Anyone have both ?
smokeyCityTeacher
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30-95
Stove/Furnace Make: Englander, Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 30-NC, 30-95

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: 009to090 On: Thu Nov 26, 2009 3:39 pm

My FireplaceXtrordinaire has a Catalytic Combustor, and not sure if it creates more BTUs by post-burning the gases not burned in the burn chamber. Unfortunately, after 10 years, the honeycomb pattern of the combustor has crumbled to pieces. Probably from the excessive heat generated. The cost for a new one is $500, so I'm not going to be replacing it anytime soon. The chimney is still staying shiney-clean, no build-up at all, so just stick with seasoned hardwood and you should be fine.
009to090
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520 HighBoy
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: DVC-500 x 2
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Rice

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: rberq On: Thu Nov 26, 2009 8:15 pm

I had a Russo with a catalytic combuster, prior to the coal stove. I owned it for 18 years but burned it only about 10. I felt it reduced creosote significantly, but certainly not 100 percent. For reasons I don't understand, there was significant buildup of creosote and soot in the stovepipe close to the stove, less in the chimney.

At a moderate burn rate, the probe thermometer just after the combuster would register 1400 to 1600 degrees. When pushed it could reach 2100 degrees or higher, but that's not good for the catalyst. I don't recall the stack temperatures being low -- they were in the low to middle portion of the "good" range imprinted on the thermometer.

As to 40 hour burn times (was that a misprint?) I don't know if that's possible. All I can say is, mine could not be set to burn low enough for warmer weather, and in cold weather it would seldom go through the night unless I got up and fed it at 3 am. The smoke was not especially clean -- it would stink up the area pretty bad in 40-degree weather when there was rain or fog that kept the smoke from dispersing.

From what I have been told about good non-cat stoves, I would say the catalyst is not worth the dollars and has little or no advantage. Having burned coal for several years now, I would never go back to wood, catalyst or no, even if you gave me the wood for nothing.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane


Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: rockwood On: Thu Nov 26, 2009 9:01 pm

smokeyCityTeacher wrote:I've been reading claims made by wood cat stoves of 40 hour low burn times

That's not possible with any average sized stove, even if burning the best hardwood.
rockwood
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Stokermatic coal furnace
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Rockwood Stoveworks Circulator
Baseburners & Antiques: Malleable/Monarch Range
Coal Size/Type: Soft coal: Lump and stoker (slack coal)

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: smokeyCityTeacher On: Fri Nov 27, 2009 12:51 am

40 hr burn time is not a misprint. Its a claim made by Blaze King stoves. I also have my doubts anyone is going to reproduce those times.


rberq wrote:I had a Russo with a catalytic combuster, prior to the coal stove. I owned it for 18 years but burned it only about 10. I felt it reduced creosote significantly, but certainly not 100 percent. For reasons I don't understand, there was significant buildup of creosote and soot in the stovepipe close to the stove, less in the chimney.

At a moderate burn rate, the probe thermometer just after the combuster would register 1400 to 1600 degrees. When pushed it could reach 2100 degrees or higher, but that's not good for the catalyst. I don't recall the stack temperatures being low -- they were in the low to middle portion of the "good" range imprinted on the thermometer.

As to 40 hour burn times (was that a misprint?) I don't know if that's possible. All I can say is, mine could not be set to burn low enough for warmer weather, and in cold weather it would seldom go through the night unless I got up and fed it at 3 am. The smoke was not especially clean -- it would stink up the area pretty bad in 40-degree weather when there was rain or fog that kept the smoke from dispersing.

From what I have been told about good non-cat stoves, I would say the catalyst is not worth the dollars and has little or no advantage. Having burned coal for several years now, I would never go back to wood, catalyst or no, even if you gave me the wood for nothing.
smokeyCityTeacher
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30-95
Stove/Furnace Make: Englander, Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 30-NC, 30-95

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Fri Nov 27, 2009 9:59 am

smokeyCityTeacher wrote:I've been reading claims made by wood cat stoves of 40 hour low burn times, efficiency above 80% and consistent low stack temp -- i.e. heat goes to the house not the chimney.

Could you provide a link? I'm calling horse puckey on the 40 hour burn time and the 80%. 80% is difficult for most boilers, a wood stove with those numbers is an "untruth".
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: rberq On: Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:20 am

coaledsweat wrote:Could you provide a link?

Here's a link, and that's what they claim for model KEJ 1107. I don't believe it either.

http://www.blazeking.com/wood-stoves.html
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Fri Nov 27, 2009 11:22 am

I see how they do it now, by using their real world numbers.


http://www.blazeking.com/btu.html
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Are the catalytics (wood) worth the extra $$ ?

PostBy: smokeyCityTeacher On: Sun Nov 29, 2009 6:05 pm

coaledsweat wrote:
smokeyCityTeacher wrote:I've been reading claims made by wood cat stoves of 40 hour low burn times, efficiency above 80% and consistent low stack temp -- i.e. heat goes to the house not the chimney.

Could you provide a link? I'm calling horse puckey on the 40 hour burn time and the 80%. 80% is difficult for most boilers, a wood stove with those numbers is an "untruth".


Here's the link with the claim of a 40 hr burn:
http://www.blazeking.com/Brochures-En/WoodProductPDF/KingWoodStove.pdf
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.
smokeyCityTeacher
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30-95
Stove/Furnace Make: Englander, Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 30-NC, 30-95