Bio Bricks

Bio Bricks

PostBy: hyway61 On: Tue Oct 14, 2008 6:02 pm

Anybody try fueling with these Bio Bricks in a a hand fired coal or wood stove. In Europe they are called brown brick coal I believe. If you tried how did they run? Around here a bag of Blachak is over $11.00..!!

Link to Bio Bricks....http://biopellet.net/


,,,hyway61
hyway61
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Russo
Stove/Furnace Model: C-55

Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: Richard S. On: Tue Oct 14, 2008 6:20 pm

You might as well not burn coal if it's $11 for bag, that's insane. Probably cheaper burning gas.

I was just to the Fireplace Gallery the other day and he had some, said they worked well. Something like $300 a ton though. Don't know how they stack up against coal. you'd need to know what kind of BTU's you get for 1 ton of bricks.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: klinker On: Tue Oct 14, 2008 6:34 pm

I've burned Bio bric in my Harman Mark II this past week. I used one of them along with real wood ...it helps to get the fire going since they are a compressed sawbust material. I wouldn't use them without the addition of natural wood since they burn rather quickly on there own 3hrs and you need 3-4 in the stove to generate any heat. If you used them 24hrs a day on there own you would probably burn 20 bric a day ( just a guess ) that would be very costly. That's all I know
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Stove/Furnace Make: harman
Stove/Furnace Model: Harman Mark II

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Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: Mike Wilson On: Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:30 pm

I tried some in my Jotul a few years ago. They burn very well, and very hot. In fact, you can't put too many of them in there, as they put out noticeably more heat than cordwood. Basically, you have to stack them together tightly, so as to keep the surface area as low as possible, so that you don't get an overfire condition. Either that, or put some in the stove in the back, and put regular wood on top and in front of them. Also, they violate some manufacturers' warranties.
That said, I don't use them, nor would I. They are just prohibitively expensive, on a cost basis analysis. Where I am, the cost of the BioBricks is equal to or higher than pellets, which is higher than oil. I suppose if you could get them cheaply enough, like 200/ton, maybe it would be worthwhile, especially as they do stack so well in the basement, have none of the dirt and bugs associated with firewood, and are just plain convenient as hell. It's definitely a wife-approved product, but for the cost.

-- MW
Mike Wilson
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Keystoker 90 DV
Stove/Furnace Model: Jøtul Kennebec Wood Insert

Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: rberq On: Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:56 pm

hyway61 wrote:In Europe they are called brown brick coal


I think bio-bricks are MODELED on the brick coal used in Europe, but are compressed wood chips and sawdust, not coal. I burned about one and a half tons of them two winters ago, in a Russo catalytic wood stove.

You have to follow instructions and stack them close together to avoid too-fast a burn. Also don't try to use them unless your stove is air-tight and controllable, as you can get a run-away fire more easily than with logs. I didn't have any run-aways, but I could see the tendency was there. There's a "technique" to burning them, basically rake your coals to one side or to the front, and stack the bricks so they burn from one side to the other like a cigar, rather than all together. (Though a couple hours after reloading you will probably have the whole mass burning.)

If I stuffed the stove with bricks I could get about the same length of burn as a full load of wood. One thing I didn't like: when the fire was burned almost out, the remaining "coals" were low density compared to regular wood coals, so you couldn't just stir up the coals and throw on substantial chunks of wood or bricks to get the fire going again; more likely you had to throw on some kindling and nurse it for awhile. And tossing a few more bricks onto a burning pile tended to disrupt the burn because of the lower density of the half-burned bricks -- they might just collapse and scatter. Overall, the bio-bricks required more attention than wood and were not quite as flexible because of the stacking and density issues.

Definitely neater and cleaner to store and handle, and lots less work than burning cord wood. Creosote and ash were comparable to burning dry wood, no better, no worse. The same smoke enveloping the house and the neighbors' houses on rainy nights. The same up-and-down, hot-and-then-cold problem as with regular firewood. The same problem of getting up at 3 am to replenish the fire so it wouldn't be dead by morning, though the bricks needed more time and attention to replenish compared to wood, as described above. $300 per ton here in Maine, though that may decrease if we get a couple local plants producing them and cut out some of the transportation cost. So all in all, bio-bricks are a viable but not ideal alternative to firewood if you weigh the extra $$$ against all the labor of firewood.
Last edited by rberq on Wed Oct 15, 2008 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: Uglysquirrel On: Wed Oct 15, 2008 12:26 pm

Tried them in a airtight low efficiency mid moe wood stove(conventional box stove, no recirculator pipes, etc). They burnt well for some initial minutes, they expanded before they are fully burnt, my findings were that as the exterior burns, the interior material gives off gases that burn on the outside (outgasing seem as blue torch like flame adjacent to surface cracks) , was left with the strong feeling that the interior gives up it's energy content by internal heating (what is that called, pyrolosis ?) before interior material is actually burnt by flame contact. I was never able to really get the stove *hot* with these bricks compared to seasoned hardwood. If I got them really cheap I'd use them though I'd have to feed them in more frequently than wood pieces.
Uglysquirrel
 
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: envisage On: Wed Oct 15, 2008 4:39 pm

I am sure that these beasties have their place, especially at a good price. If the opportunity presents itself I will definitely pick some up. Nevertheless, there is nothing like having a nice piece of seasoned oak, black locust or hickory burning in the wood stove. The aroma is wonderful (considering the wood type), and the heat is great. Plus, I love splitting, stacking and burning wood (not so hot on the gathering part)! :-)

P.S. - I LOVE COAL as well !!! :-)
envisage
 
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Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: hyway61 On: Thu Oct 16, 2008 8:02 pm

$396 per ton around here, which they say equals 1.5 cord of wood. The vendor said they are made exactly like pellets and from the same material...i.e. they're just big pellets. Too pricey for me. Hope i can find a coal vendor here in L.I. NY that has bagged coal at reasonable price.


...hyway61
hyway61
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Russo
Stove/Furnace Model: C-55

Re: Bio Bricks

PostBy: rberq On: Thu Oct 16, 2008 8:30 pm

hyway61 wrote:$396 per ton around here, which they say equals 1.5 cord of wood


And I thought $300 per ton was expensive. Also, when they say a ton equals 1.5 cords of wood, they lie big-time. Bio-bricks ARE wood, therefore about 8000 Btu per pound. Any cord of respectable firewood (oak, maple, beech, ash, etc.), dry, is going to weigh significantly more than a ton and also have 8000 Btu per pound. The ratio is probably more like, one cord of wood equals 1.3 tons of bricks.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

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