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Pyroclassic IV wood fire

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Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 28 Jul '14 09:06 AM

in answer to your question we have a two storey house but with a high roof. when originally installed they forgot the extra 600mm but came back and fitted it- it seemed to draw worse post that! fuel is FINE it's burning fine in a masport up the road- it meets the three sides burnig within a couple minutes of being put on the fire" test. As far as the pyroclassic is concerned I think the flue is too narrow for such a long run- but pivot stoves wont admit it. I suspect there is also a leak somewhere- this may now be blocked up by the creosote which is STILL running. We are in a pretty damp area, when it is raining the fire doesn't draw properly, when the temp is 15 degrees outside the house is nice and warm- drop below ten tho and you need to sit on top of the fire not to freeze. So basically if you have a tiny single storey house, a nice warm outside temp , have an RH of less than 4%, are prepared to buy kiln dried wood and only want a fire when there is an "r"in the month buy this overpriced lump of metal. You also seem to need to feed wood into the fussy thing on the hour every hour if you wish to keep any heat in and the fire burning- so only useful if you intend to sit at home all day looking after it- and it uses HEAPS. If you have a larger house of more than one storey think again! The amusing instructions on how to use the thing which tell you not to light your fire with them are correct- instead light your first fire with the warrenty as pivot stoves have no interest in helping you when things go wrong. Their service sucks worse than the fire which is why we are having the thing taken out and replaced as soon as possible.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 28 Jul '14 07:28 PM

Hi,

So the flue must be at least 8.5-9.5 m long...????

My take on what is happening based on distilling the info out of your posts is that the flue is basically too long for the fire. The smoke is cooling as it heads up the flue and then is condensing forming creosote etc...

What length of flue is the 'masport up the road' running?...

We used to get quite a few issues with longer flue installs from flues gunking up as is this case to complaints about whistling air tubes.

What's the installer saying about the water ingress issues you have been having and the overall performance of the fire and flue issues???


Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 29 Jul '14 09:21 AM

the installer was totally surprised by the issue- the only time they have had an issue with creosoting like this was with someone burning freshly cut avocado! they are quite reputable and I have no doubt if they had been aware of an issue with this length of flue they would have advised us to put something else in. They have been out several times( that's an hour and a half travelling time and they are still awaiting final payment, so it is in their interests to get it fixed soon as) ,bogged up around the flue (stopped the initial water leak but not the creosote or subsequent water leak) checked out the flue, swept the flue on the last visit, made adjustments and contacted pivot stoves- and been given absolutely no support or help from them. Except for an over the phone comment asking them if it was a "sloping roof" (aren't most?) followed by the comment ähh ok"when told it was- no further explanation was forthcoming. I would agree with your assessment that the flue is too long for its diameter- but it is the only flue available for this fire and there is NO mention of this being an issue in any of the pyroclassic literature. There were no issues like this with our previous (20 year old) fire running a standard flue in the same two storey house! to me this is an intrinsic fault in the pyroclassic fire- one that pivot stoves keep hidden from their clients and wash their hands of when it comes to light. My first contact with pivot stoves regarding the issue was answered in a very patronising manner. They did have a staff member who was visiting family in the area who came and saw us- he prefaced every remark with the comment that he was not a technical person -and filled the house up with smoke (setting off the smoke alarms )trying - and failing- to get the thing lit, the installer then swept out about 5lbs of soot and the two of them then had to take the fire to pieces to remove it from the base of the chimney. The heat exchange bars are so badly clogged up that their efficiency has to be greatly reduced After some more twoing and froing we were told that someone from pivot stoves was going to ring us about it the "next"day- that was about 5 weeks ago and we are still waiting for that call. Tonight the fire has been lit for about four hours, I currently have the vent open and am sitting four feet away from it shivering because it is a cold night and it is just not chucking out any heat- we're just watching our firewood go up in smoke (and creosote ) for little heat output.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 29 Jul '14 10:44 AM

Ok the flue water leaks would seem to be an issue with the install not the fire..

If you're not getting much joy from Pyroclassic then speak with the installer. I think it's possible to remove the flue adaptor from the top of the fire (the bit that necks down the 150mm outlet to 100mm) and then install a 150mm (6") flue.. Given that 150mm is pretty much an industry standard that should resolve any issues with a restricted flue and possibly is the same flue diameter as the '20 year old' burner was running.



The installer should be able to certify that I would think. It depends I suppose if you are on a rural property 2ha and greater. As modifying the flue will take the fire out of Clean Air spec. Some installers have issues with this some dont I guess it depends on how 'severe' the local authority is when it come to CA compliance.

The flue install when complete should be compliant with AS/NZS 2918 and the building weather tightness will need to comply with the NZBC.

One thing I would generally say is if you are on a property less than 2ha and therefore need a CA compliant wood burner then generally comparing a modern CA compliant fire to a 20 year old non CA compliant fire can be a bit of a rude awakening. CA legislation and the 4012 4013 testing forces manufacturers to control air flow rates quite tightly in the fire.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 29 Jul '14 12:17 PM

Hi Meg a couple of questions two story house . where is the flue pipe fitted ? ie in the old brick chimney , exposed to ground ceiling then double skinned ? . we have finally got our PYROCRAP as we call it going properly .

and i believe it was made wrong. check the two over air tubes arent burnt away and split on the top of them and rear . when you have a fire going with the slider and door shut . when you have a fire going , look at the two air tubes at the top of the fire , can you see a air steam with flames around it at open ends of them ?

do you have a wet back fitted ?

what i found was this . Take the side panels and front panels off . is there any rust marks around the outside of the tube ? if you have a wetback and you see rust all along the joins . then its leaking ! if the wet back leaks into the combustion chamber . no amount of wood will get draw into the chimney. the water is turning into steam robbing the heat energy .

look at the bottom back of the fire tube , you will need a mirror . there is a slot about 15mm wide and goes about 100mm around the bottom of the steel tube . we found our was blocked with KOawool. this stops air getting to the over air tubes. after fiddly work i managed to get the space clear from the slot to the back of the air tubes . I had to replace our tubes , when i did this the second time i altered them . i plugged the end with a 1/2 iron plug and drilled 8 of 6mm holes 50mm apart down each tubes length. when i refitted the tubes i had the holes pointing down wards . since doing that the slider is hardly open and our ceramic tube is white hot . the slider allows cold air to enter the firebox. this is then sucked strait up the flue . air via the over tubes is pre heated and gets the wood degassing and burning.

I once had a wood fire that a firm fitted that i worked for and it just didnt go . it was a very high ceiling Lockwood ./ the flue was exposed all the way to the apex of the roof . when i put a thermometer on the flue out at the roof , the smoke was only a couple of degrees warmer than air temp . we wrapped the flue in Kaowool from about 3 meters above the fire and it worked a treat . a proper fix after that was to remove the flue and put a liner around it with kaowool between them.

a bigger flue will give you a slower flue speed and less pull . I have a firms thermal camera and my next door neighbors flue pipe 500mm above the fire is 250 degrees . our pyro when roaring is only 150 degrees c . If the flue is over cooling then you will have no draw and water vapour condensing this will lead to hi creosote levels too. The hot gasses in your flue are pushed up by colder heavier air wanting to replace it. people think hot air / water rises . it doesnt its pushed up by heavier air ! . sorry for the ramble but i we have had two years of it . and now selling the house !

hope you get it fixed .

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 29 Jul '14 11:24 PM

Thanks for the helpful comments guys but the problem is on its way to being sorted- the installer is going to rip out the pyrocrap (like the name ) and fix a masport as soon as consent comes through- bear in mind we bought the pyro at easter as an invcestment for the house- ha bloody ha! Interesting to hear about the faulty fire though as I have also suspected there could be a problem with the fire as well as the long flue- will keep an eye out for the problem you describe. (well there is definitely a problem with a $7000 fire that won't heat the house except on warm, dry days!) But yes the flue (looks lovely all that stainless steel right up until it is covered with dribbles of black gunk from the roof to the fire) is totally exposed to the roof (mind you if it was covered the kao wool would be absorbing all that creosote and we wouldn't know it was happeneing). The house is about 20 years old and timber- no brick flue. We have had the tubes glowing red hot on occasion- it generally takes about 3 hours to get hot tho, you have to sit there and feed it wood about every hour on the hour and still doesn't really put heat out into the house- we can get the living room and the bedroom above (mezzanine type) warm but the small open plan room attached to the living room is still freezing. The wet back was really good for the first few weeks but since the blocking of the flue the pipes are covered in gunk so they are insulated and seem less effective. It's been burning ok for the last few days but we have had that run of warm sunny dry days- today we have drizzle and fog and I suspect it's going to be a mare to get going. We don't have leaking at the moment but it's been dry- I did hear dripping one night but there was no external leak I think it was down the inside of the flue. As stated the installer did come out and bog it up - that was after the first week when we noticed the start of the creosote problem. We asked the installer about the flue but the 4inch thing is the standard fitting for it- their hands are tied- we're not in a clean air zone- we were suposedly future proofing and being green with the pyrocrap. Our problem is not with the installer- they have been desperately trying to fix the problem (remember they have not yet had all their money so they are out of pocket) our problem is with the poor service from the manufacturer who refuses to admit the possibility that there might be a problem with the flue or the fire itself to us or the installer. We did our research before purchase (not just from the manufacturers site) and thought we were getting ourselves a good fire that would last us for many years to come, add value to the house, use less wood, put out less emissions that was backed by the manufacturer- boy were we wrong on all counts there! if you've got one of these and it works for you then great but i wouldn't want anyone else getting suckered like we did because their conditions don't meet the fussy and exacting standards required by this overpriced, overhyped burner.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 03 Aug '14 09:38 PM

Hello, I have a bit similar issue, I have had the fireplace for 3 months, I was using it initially according to the Pyroclassic instructions (closing the turboslide) and after three months the flue was completely blocked by creosote. I have over 2 years old dry wood, under 20% moisture, however I was told by Pyroclassic that I use wet wood... Now I have to keep turboslide open but it means the fire last only few hours, not overnight. I have two story house and the flue was designed by Pyroclassic. As I can see I am not alone having such problems...

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 04 Aug '14 07:50 AM

Always (sort of) good to know you're not alone, or you might believe their crap about your wood. All being well by the end of tomorrow we will have a shiny new masport fitted ( if the weather holds) - your post just makes me more glad that we decided to give the pyrocrap the flip rather than just replacing the flue. You managed 3 months we only managed 8 weeks, not exactly great longevity eh?

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 04 Aug '14 08:28 AM

Hello Mag, I like the fire but as I can see what was written by savgas and also what I could google on the internet the design of the flue is possibly to be blamed. While they knew all parameters of my house (and they built a brand new chimney flue) and claiming that they have "30 years of experience" to me it is just a big unprofessional and negligence. I would like Pyroclassic guys to fix as warranty issue and get it working however they say that now it is only my case and that I should fix it myself. If needed I happy to go with it to Fair Go...

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 04 Aug '14 09:29 PM

Hello savgas, thank you for your comments, especially the last paragraph about the flue and hot air. I guess I have exactly this problem of over cooling of my long flue bad design.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 05 Aug '14 07:32 AM

well it's gone, the masport is now in and our installer is only recommending people to buy a pyrocrap if they are going to put kiln dried wood in it, now lets see how this copes with a two storey house. The pyro flue was full of cooked on crap.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 21 Sep '14 08:04 AM

FYI, our pyro IV lasted 8 months before the flue blocked and it has now exploded 5 times after refueling with wood due to wood gas build up. Luckily its design is to throw the top plate off rather than breaking the glass door so not much damage done. However it does throw out a lot of soot and the internal white insulation fibers , which initially I though it was asbestos but it's kaowool which is apparently much safer. Pyro say that we must make sure that the wood is burning before closing the door or that there is a good glowing hot bed of embers which I do and this has helped, but tonight it even blew when there was a solid glowing bed of embers. It's particularly dangerous when cooking, or boiling water with hot water potentially thrown across the room! Pyro classic said that wood gas build up explosions are a common complaint, they get about 5 calls a week due to Pyro IV's exploding. My wife is scared of it. We're going to have to get rid of it...

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 21 Sep '14 09:41 AM

Are you sure the fireplace is working properly? Are both primary and secondary air intakes open to bring the air to the fireplace? Especially the secondary one? You might have the same crippled faulty fireplace as me. Just the Pyroclassic people blame anybody else just they do not admit their error at all... I had several issues, they denied everything... By now it is partly fixed. I had to help myself while they did not agree that it was warranty issue. They might talk nicely but actually they pretty arrogant.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 21 Sep '14 10:46 AM

The fire does run well, easy to start, has a hot fire and holds it heat really well. I think this is the cause of the gasification of the wood. If there are no flames to ignite the timber and the "furnace" is really hot the wood will gasify with the volatile gases going up the flue. If there is a back draft due to outside wind pressure changing, the flow can reverse bringing the explosive gases and oxygen back into the chamber where it is likely to ignite and explode with enough force to send all the panels flying. I'll post a photo. I would be happy with it it it didn't blow up.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 26 Mar '15 11:53 PM

Hi all,

I want to thank you for sharing your experiences owning a pyro. I started looking into these back in 2011 and couldn't find any objective reviews whatsoever, the only available information was complete hyperbole.

I really liked their idea and wanted to install one, but after exhaustive searches of the net and talking to installers and owners the real world performance just didn't stack up. But it was really hard to expose.

Eventually I found an article where a guy published a graph from a datalogger showing the heat up and cool down characteristics of the ceramic chamber. That illustrated the need to basically run them 24x7 and kiss goodbye to any reduced fuel consumption whatsoever.

Likewise creosoting of the 4" flues was mentioned anecdotally in one or two places.

For these and other reasons I installed another make woodburner (before these posts circa 2014) were published.

What you've provided here is really really helpful.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 07 Apr '15 02:58 AM

All I know is that I have had my Pyroclassic wood fire for two years now and it is the best wood fire that I have ever had. It is easy to light and will hold enough heat and coals overnight for near instant start up on the morning.

We live a cooler part of Christchurch on a south facing slope in a early 1940s weather board house with single glazing and this wood burner heats the house rapidly. The top of the wood burner gets hot enough to boil a kettle in under 2mins which is faster than our electric kettle. In order to slow cook on it we needed to get a trivit as all we got before that is frying mode.

The secret to getting the burn right is to get dry hardwood. When we got the pyroclassic installed we had a month when were very disappointed with the initial burn. We were using kiln dried blue gum and though we were ok as it measured 8% moisture when tested. However, when we split some of it an measured a sample it was running at about 20% moisture at the core. One to watch out for. Once we got the properly seasoned wood that was dry right through then there were no problems and the burn was fantastic. Having learnt this lesson we now get our wood in and undercover at least 18months in advance and will check each batch of wood as it comes time to burn it.

The other thing that needs to be right is the dimensions of the wood. It needs to be longer than for a standard fire box as this fire burns front to back and you need to have the entire length of the fire box occupied by wood to get the fire operating properly. Also need to stick to smaller diameters of wood. If this is done then you get a really good economical fire. We used no more than 6-8 pieces of hard wood plus kindling for an evenings fire that will keep the house warm all night (starting at about 6 pm when I get home).

Looking at the first persons problem I would say that there was a major problem with the installation you should never get creosote coming back down the outside of the flue with that. I also think that the offset flue might have been part of the problem. These fires don't really like them that much.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 07 Apr '15 06:59 AM

well I'm glad it works for you- but our wood had been sitting onsite for about 3 years before it came in and sat in our porch for another 9 to 12 months so how much seasoning do you need?- they list 20% as being ok but obviously from your experience even that is too wet. Smaller diameters? great lots more splitting then (and we tried that) - like I said- too darn fussy to be worth bothering with- and if the fire can't cope with an offset flue then why will they cheerfully sell you one? The installer came back and put more sealant in initially but that didnt cure it- I think there was a major fault with the fire itself. The manufacturer needs to acknowledge and front up when their product fails to meet up to their hype because the conditions aren't quite perfect or investigate the fire to make sure it isn't faulty. I suspect your climate is drier than ours as well as it never drew well when it was raining our drizzling (well worse than it did when it was dry)

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 25 May '15 08:11 AM

hello Lyttlescotty. I have had my pyroclassic 4 days so far :)and love it. I'm not getting an overnight burn though and I think its because of he length of the wood. Today i emailed 6 well known wood merchants here in Christchurch asking if they do the longer length wood as I required it for a pyroclassic fire. One told me that there 10 inch wood will burn overnight, one completely ignored the question.....where do you get your wood from ? any advice appreciated

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 24 Jun '15 10:24 AM

Hi All, we are in our third season of using a pryro iv with wetback, and overall we are very pleased with it. But, this season symptoms similar to some posts have arisen. That is, the need to use the turboslide for more than startup and reload and general sluggish performance, following two excellent seasons with no problems. We are not out of the woods yet this season, but here's what we have found. Providing flue cleaning instructions to our sweep lead to a fear of damaging the wetback heat exchanger and incomplete flue cleaning for two seasons. A few weeks ago, following email queries to pyroclassic (who have been responsive and very helpful), the bottom flue section started to crackle, creosote could be heard falling inside, and the lower flue started to glow. We were near ignition for a full on flue fire! Shutting the turbo down killed the heat. We purchased 3x1.5m rods with brush and cleaned the full flue length ourselves, which solved most of the problem. This was the most likely cause for sluggishness, that was provided to us by pyroclassic following our inquiry. The residual issue we believe relates to short lengths (300mm) of douglas slab wood. Moisture is <10%, but it is hard to use the full length of the firebox with short wood, which we were achieving during other seasons when the performance was excellent. We find the first 3 small loads of wood are run with some turbo to warm up the ceramic and develop an ember bed, following that the turbo is closed for normal operation. Burning the handle and damaging air tubes in a few seasons sounds symptomatic of running the fire on turbo and too hot. Creosote staining down the outside of the flue to the interior of the house is related to installation. As we've found out, modern silicone sealant around the rubber roof flashing gasket to the outter flue sleeve are unreliable and may lead to water leaks during wind and rain - easily fixed with a quality fit for purpose silicone product. Our installers were a couple of fussy boiler fitters. The Council inspector commented on the best install he had seen in years. I'll provide a performance update when our longer wood is fully seasoned.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 25 Jun '15 01:39 AM

Subsequent to yesterday's post I've found an article on the Net www.epa.gov/burnwise/workshop2011/WoodCombustion-Curkeet.pdf. New to me, wood can be too dry, so the ideal is between 15% and 25%, which most burners are designed for. In brief - over dry wood rapidly releases gases that require sufficient oxygen for complete combustion that cannot be met by some wood-burner designs. This results in pulsating or hunting combustion and poor emissions that leads to creosote build up. Even if you meet the oxygen demand (open the turbo), the rsulting fire is very hot and can cause damage (burnt handles and failing air tubes). It seems that you are damned if you do....damned if you don't dry wood. So we are starting again - cleaning the flue, inspecting the upper chamber with a cheap USB cam for excessive creosote deposits from cleaning, cutting to ideal length wood of the recommended moisture range, and also checking the airtube inlet is not obscured by any misplaced kaowool or other. A bit of a fuss, but I'll post the results soon.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 25 Jun '15 01:43 AM

You may have sorted this by now, otherwise see my recent posts, which may help.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 25 Jun '15 03:50 AM

or just go for something which is NOT a pyrocrap which is quite happy to burn any reasonable wood that you have felled and seasoned for a reasonable length of time. Something that does not require kiln dried wood which is neither pine, fir or (from our experience) eucalyptus or cut to a scientifically exact length :-). A fireplace that does not require specialist sealing compounds to ensure that the flue will draw properly. Our Metro is happily burning away right now (windblown pine from about 12 months ago, cut from where is fell the other day and split at the weekend ), throwing out plenty of warmth, staying in overnight and boiling the hot water, something the pyrocrap struggled with after the first couple of weeks of use. No brainer which I'd rather have. I can't answer for Metros customer service as we haven;t needed to use it. Unlike pyrocrap's, which was crap.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 29 Jun '15 10:26 AM

I understand some pyroclassic fire users like Madmeg are literally fuming with “pyrocraps” and prefer black-boxes that throw out huge amounts of energy, while consuming massive amounts of wood. To be fair, Madmeg’s photo suggests the retailer and installer should not have recommended a pyro with 100mm diameter flue offset in the manner shown, and creosote can only run down the outside of the flue if poorly installed. This is the summary of causes / solutions to our pyro iv, I’ve now completely sorted. The pyro is a burner based on furnace technology and is actually very simple in design, but it is finely tuned. Three air sources, primary front ports above the door, secondary air tubes supplying hot air to burn gases just as they exit to the top chamber, and a turbo slide primary for starting and reloading. As previously posted, after 2 years using a pyro iv, we encountered problems. During these problems, emails and phone calls to Pyroclassic in Hastings has been well supported. I believe three issues coincided to amp up the poor performance. 1) The flue was not cleaned properly. 2) The creosote wasn’t removed from the top chamber after cleaning. 3) The primary air ports effectively became blocked over time. Addressing the flue, the 100mm dia is finely matched to the draw of a properly functioning fire. As soon as significant creosote builds up, the fire closes down, theoretically avoiding a flue fire. However, to counteract poor performance owners natural call on the turbo, which in our case started a flue fire. Creosote build up in the top chamber, likewise reduces flow and the wet-back heat exchanger becomes less effective. So once again the turbo is called on. Finally, the primary air ports behind the front cover. Our model has heat insulation behind the front cover to avoid heat damage to the front painted surface. When fitting the panel, you need to pull the centre of the panel out to avoid damaging the insulation on the spacer bolt, located between the primary air ports. The bolt is a tight fit on the insulation, and over time the insulation compresses, allowing the front panel clearance to the ports (7mm) to be reduced. This restricts air flow, requiring the use of the turbo. My conversation with Pyroclassic found that the insulation is no longer fitted to the front panels, as testing found it isn’t required, and therefore avoids the risk of blocked air ports. Our fire is back to operating as new. We have not had to replace handles or air tubes, and at present it is purr’ing along using only an arm full of wood for the night, heating the entire upper level of our house.

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 29 Jun '15 09:09 PM

which model have you got? ours was the iv. Our contact was through Pivot stoves in Chch that was the contact number available and I believe they are the company which now makes the things- they were unhelpful verging on rude in the extreme. The manufacturers sweeping advice distinctly tells you NOT to take off the top plate but to only sweep down from the top and says that any remaining creosote will burn off the water tubes (it would struggle with the amount that ours collected in 2 months of burning). Even after being swept and removed about 2kgs of clumped soot from the flue it would not burn properly (this was after two months of use). They do not mention using any special compound on the joints in the literature, our installer was reputable and had fitted a number of the things without any problems- they were also disgusted at the lack of response to queries for help. It never at any stage required just an "armful" of wood for an evening but burnt it's way through more than half the winters supply in three months with minimal heat output. I find your first paragraph patronising (in fact it is the same tone we got from pivot stoves when attempting to deal with them) yes, I have fire to keep me warm, that is its purpose, it is the only form of heating in our 2 storey house and needs to to do the job it was purchased for. The current "black box" uses far LESS fuel than the useless pyrocrap and puts out a good heat. It burns what we put in it and after using it for the rest of last season the soot was minimal when it was swept (there was a HUGE starling nest in it though!). The installer came back several times to try and fix the thing and gave us very good service- which is much more than can be said for pivot stoves who never got back to us when they had promised to and refused to acknowledge there might be a problem with the expensive and useless piece of crap we had bought. It strikes me that the "fixes"you have had to do - take this off fiddle with that etc are all well outside the manufacturers own recommendations. when you spend as much money as you have to to get a pyrocrap then you should surely be getting a quality , well supported product not a fussy, fiddly heath robinson contraption

Re: Pyroclassic IV wood fire

Posted 30 Jun '15 12:41 AM

Hi Madmeg, I agree with your comments and I provided feedback to Pyroclassic that their instructions are not adequate and may lead to problems such as the ones we had. Our fire is a pyroclassic iv. In the end, removing the top plate was straight forward. Only the stainless flue sections are cemented as per the instructions, nothing fancy. The lower cone to top plate spigot is a press fit with no cement, held in place by one screw at the back. We removed the screw and lifted the flue, resting it on a board supported by a stool placed either side of the burner. The top is then easy to remove, though beware that kaowool is likely to stick to the plate, therefore have a flat blade handy to scrape it off without damage. This requires two people to save torture. The lady kitchener is of similar concept design, but the top plate appears to have two sections, making this task easier without lifting the flue. If I were Pyroclassic, I'd develop a similar way to clean the top chamber easily, as inevitably creosote deposits will build up no matter how well you use the fire. I really believe that the ceramic firebox is a huge asset to this fire and that the design is worthy of further refinement to make it more service friendly and avoid many issues posted here. Whether they choose to do so is another thing, but they have at least addressed the blocked primary port problem.
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