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Thread: Is Blaze King too much stove?

  1. #1
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    Default Is Blaze King too much stove?

    I have a 16x20 cabin near Talkeetna. Eight inch D-logs, half loft.
    I'm looking to replace my barrel stove with something that will give me a longer burn time.
    I've read a lot in the archives and get the impression the Blaze King Princess is a pretty solid stove. I've looked at AK Fireplace and the guy there really pushes this stove. I dont have a problem spending the money on one. The barrel stove will heat the cabin, but I'd just like to replace it with something more efficient.
    I'm not there the entire winter, just a couple weeks a month.
    I burn mostly 1-2 year old birch, with a little spruce mixed in.
    Sounds like the BK will allow me to be out all day and return to a warm cabin, but will it be overkill for a 320 square ft cabin? AK Fireplace thinks not.
    My goal is to replace this one time, with the right stove. I realize there are a lot of stoves of different quality out there, I dont want to climb a ladder, I want to go right to the top. I dont wanna go thru winter wishing I'd have spent more for a better stove.
    I haven't seen any post yet from someone not satisfied with the BK.
    One concern might be the catalytic stove. I dont know much about them.

  2. #2
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    Rooster, you are trading up on this by far, blaze king has been in business for as long as I can remember. I was in the woodstove business in CO for many years and they are good/great stoves. Ak fireplace does push this stove pretty hard and that is fine... he stands behind the stoves he sells. I had my favorite as well which was Lopi, and Harmon stoves. You will get a better burn time from BK by far than a barrel stove.
    Burn time and heat transfer can be gauged in two ways with these stoves. Barrel stove will handle more wood and get a higher heat transfer but will burn faster and cool faster. The BK will take a little longer to heat up( heaver stove and will take a bit longer to get heated thermal mass) but will hold the heat longer and burn more efficiently meaning less fuel to gain the same amount of heat.
    Birch is a fast burning and high heat (BTU) wood.... I burn the same but also burn coal as well and that will get the longest burn time. We are limited up here on what we can burn. Birch is the best burning wood over pine and much cleaner as well. Coal will last longer and higher BTU than most wood but we do no have the best coal. Keep in mine you can not burn coal in all stoves.... only stoves that have a shaker great.

    I would suggest getting a non catalytic stove over one with a catalytic converter. The reason is you have to burn at about 500 degrees for the cat to work properly and folks like to damper down for that long burn time which cuts the heat of the fire down. I base that on CO and high altitude burning with pine so that my be a bit different here with birch.

    Either way good luck on your choice I hope this helps.

    Sweepint
    Wasilla, (when not overseas)
    '' Livn' The Dream ''
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  3. #3
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Bk stove will be a bit overkill but you won't regret it at all when it comes to stoking it once a day or when temps drop. It will cruise rather than running hard when its cold and you want it warm inside.
    We have a king in the house and a princess at the cabin, 10 years and we still love 'em. Ak Dan has been great to work with on both buying experiences and any questions we had.
    The king will hold coals up to 48 hrs princess about the same depending on the setting you leave it at. I would not bother with the fan kit as you won'tneed it for a cabin that small. Plus you want a clean, unobtructed top to cook on, reheat items, keep a pot of water on, coffee, etc....
    Bk

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    Rooster, we live in a 16 X 24 stick frame "cabin" full time here on the Kenai peninsula. We installed a BK Sirocco 20 a couple years ago and could not be happier. It is a smaller version of the BK princess. Burn times as long as 15 hours on low with birch and a little lower with spruce. On low, the combuster will stay active. Those times we leave for a few days, we have a direct vent propane heater to keep things from freezing up. It also helps on those cooler shoulder season nights

  5. #5
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    Great info, appreciate it!
    Is the Sirocco 20 catalytic? If I recall, BK does make one with out catalytic converter. I asked AK Fireplace several times about a smaller stove but he seemed to be stuck on the Princess, mainly because of longer burn time I think.

    Is AK Dan on the forums?
    I wont do the fan kit as I'm off grid. I have one of those little fans to sit on my barrel stove, I dont think they move much air, but it's a good guage to tell when the fire is burning.

    I know this is a huge step up from the barrel stove, like I said, I want to buy one more stove and be done with it, rather than keep climbing the ladder every couple years til I find the one that works best for me. Thanks for the advice on the catalytic. I'm afraid if I burned it that hot, I'd need to put more windows in the cabin to cool it off.

  6. #6
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    Yes, like the king, princess and chinook, the Sirocco is a catalytic stove--check out the BK website to compare. We purchased at the BK dealer in Sterling

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    If you want to do it right the first time don't buy a princess. It is too big. The stack exhaust burns too cold. Get a stove with some mass.
    Your barrel stove will heat your cabin a lot better if only wrapped in a heat absorbing stone or sand. Get an old upright freezer or refrigerator. Gut it out and open up the bottem end. Put your barrel stove in the refrigerator and fill up around it with rock and sand. A second barrel on top help also.

  8. #8
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Rooster,
    Ak Dan is Alaska Fire place Dan, the owner. Most likely the guy you have been talking to.
    Bk

  9. #9
    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    There is truth to everything posted so far. BK makes a high quality stove (they are also very expensive). That said, I personally have never met a catalytic stove I really liked, regardless of manufacturer. Besides BK, there are many very high quality, very efficient, non-catalytic stoves out there capable of serving your needs. The most expensive stoves are not always the best designed stoves! Do your research. This company >LINK< makes a very high quality stove at a very reasonable price point. I have had one as my primary heat source for several years and can recommend them highly. (Can't say the same for some similar looking, higher priced stoves I am also intimately familiar with). The burn box design utilized by this company is VERY well engineered!
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
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  10. #10
    Member Redlander's Avatar
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    Have you considered a Vermont Casting Aspen model? Or Jotul 602? In a small cabin and good stove, you don't have to have a big stove. If I ever get to move up, we're bringing Fisher Baby Bears (because we've cornered the market and over bought). Our neighbors in AK have a smallish cabin, and they have a Baby Bear. They have to keep it choked down to keep it from running them outside. A Jotul 602 is just a tad smaller. A good stove will save you wood and labor.

  11. #11
    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    I have a BK Primcess non-cat in my 16x24. It works great. I have triple wall 8" all the way, and the stack stays clean if I crank it up every once in a while. What I like about the big BK is that I can fit full rounds (8" or so) in which lets it burn longer without roasting us out. The key is to learn the stove: starting, adjusting intake, and adjusting damper to keep it going all day, yet not overheating the cabin.
    ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    There is truth to everything posted so far. BK makes a high quality stove (they are also very expensive). That said, I personally have never met a catalytic stove I really liked, regardless of manufacturer. Besides BK, there are many very high quality, very efficient, non-catalytic stoves out there capable of serving your needs. The most expensive stoves are not always the best designed stoves! Do your research. This company >LINK< makes a very high quality stove at a very reasonable price point. I have had one as my primary heat source for several years and can recommend them highly. (Can't say the same for some similar looking, higher priced stoves I am also intimately familiar with). The burn box design utilized by this company is VERY well engineered!
    Can I ask which model you bought and approx how much you had to give for it?........just for a comparison, as I see we have a dealer down here.....
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

  13. #13
    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    Can I ask which model you bought and approx how much you had to give for it?........just for a comparison, as I see we have a dealer down here.....
    I have a Kodiak 1200 on legs. Don't recall accurately what I paid for it. Could look it up but it would take some digging... However; cost was appreciably less than similarly sized/styled stoves of similar alleged output, from the same dealer. If I had it to do over again, especially if for use in a more upscale dwelling than the one I currently occupy, I would get the Boston simply for the aesthetics. As said, I have lived with and am quite familiar with several comparable brands and can say unreservedly that this stove is very well engineered and constructed. I'm really impressed with it. You'll notice that all the 1200 models and 1700 models have the same efficiency/output specs respectively... That's because the firebox is exactly the same for each. They use a modular type production system...The price varies based upon the fanciness of the exterior, and the options chosen, but the "guts" (firebox) remains exactly the same, regardless of the exterior dressing. The firebox/airflow management/door seals/door latch/etc is all really well engineered and executed. I've lived with this one as my primary heat source for 5 years now and it would be a really tough sell to get me to switch to a different brand at this point, even if there was a significant price difference.

    About 15 years ago, I had a Vermont Casting Aspen (suggested by Redlander below) in a different cabin and found it to be a very nice little stove too. It's in a completely different size class tho (it's a bit less than half the size of this stove), so apples to oranges. One thing about the Aspen: you need to be VERY diligent about emptying the ash pan regularly (every other day), as it's a very unforgiving design if you don't.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
    I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. ~Gerry Spence
    The last thing Alaska needs is another bigot. ~member Catch It
    #Resist

  14. #14
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    Thanks for the input. I've checked out the Enviro, as well as Vermont Castings. The Aspen is a nice little stove, but I like the burn time of the Resolute Acclaim much better. Again, maybe overkill for my little cabin.
    I definitely want to find a dealer and look at the Enviro.
    Appreciate the advice!

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