FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Space Can A Kimberly™ Or Katydid™ Heat?

In determining which wood stove is best for your needs, one should consider not only the heat output of the wood stove but also the heat retention of your space, as well as your own personal expectations; in other words, are you comfortable at 68-degrees or is 75-degrees more comfortable for you?

We recommend that you consider the following variables when making your purchasing decisions:

  • Local climate and weather conditions.
  • Square footage and ceiling height of your space.
  • Insulation in your walls and attic.
  • Window quality and number of windows.
  • Location of your wood stove within your space.
  • Air movement & humidity levels within your space.
  • Wood species and wood moisture content of your fuel.

As well, your investment in a moisture meter with an accuracy of +/- 1% can be made for less than $50 and it will help to ensure you are getting the most heat from the least amount of wood, and the longest possible burn times.

What Burn Time Should I Expect With A Kimberly™ Or Katydid™ Wood Stove?

Experience has shown that you might expect up to 10 hours for Katydid™, from coal bed to coal bed, and up to 8 hours for Kimberly™, from coal bed to coal bed.

Individual results will vary as the species of wood, the moisture content in your wood, and the size of load in your firebox, will affect your results, as will the length and function of your chimney.

For example, softwoods such Douglas Fir and pine will burn to ash far quicker than hardwoods such as oak, hickory or maple. Likewise, a high moisture content in your cordwood will produce less heat and more creosote than a low moisture content. For maximum heat output, always burn wood that is 20% moisture or less as verified by a moisture meter.

The lower the temperature that a wood releases its gases, the longer the burn time in your Unforgettable Fire™ wood stove. Extruded sawdust logs can gasify at a lower temperature than cordwood. Your experience with extruded sawdust logs will vary by brand, as the size, shape and the amount of pressure that the extruded logs are formed under varies from manufacturer to manufacturer.

Our experience has shown that the more sheen on the surface of a sawdust log, and the darker the exterior color of the extruded logs, the greater the pressure that the extruded log was formed under, and the longer one’s burn time.

The Kimberly™ and Katydid™ wood stoves are gasifying wood stoves. Instead of burning the wood hot as most wood stoves do, Kimberly™ and Katydid™ gasify the wood by restricting oxygen in the primary combustion so that it smolders and burning the wood gases {smoke} in the secondary combustion.

It is the burning of the smoke in secondary combustion that produces most of the heat in an Unforgettable Fire™ wood stove; the process of releasing the wood gases is called, pyrolysis, which is defined as “decomposition brought about by high temperatures”.

In gasification wood stoves, such as Kimberly™ and Katydid™, live flames will gradually diminish, leaving behind coals, which will continue to release heat into the room, until they too have extinguished. The temperature in your home when you wake up in the morning will be determined by your home’s ability to retain heat, which can be affected by one or more variables below:

  • Local climate and weather conditions.
  • Square footage and ceiling height of your space.
  • Insulation in your walls and attic.
  • Window quality and number of windows.
  • Location of your wood stove within your space.
  • Air movement & humidity levels within your space.
  • Wood species and wood moisture content of your fuel.
  • Size of fuel load.

Because dry, seasoned wood will produce more heat, burn longer, and produce less creosote than wood containing greater than 20% moisture content, your investment in a moisture meter with an accuracy of +/- 1% can be made for less than $50 and it will help to ensure you are getting the most heat from the least amount of wood.

Summary:

  • Can you expect to wake up to active, live flames in the morning? {No.}
  • Can you expect to wake up to a warm stove and chimney with live coals, making it easy to get your fire going again? {Yes, depending on fuel and function of your chimney.}
  • Will my house be cold when I wake up in the morning? {That depends upon the insulation and heat retention of your space.}

Are Your Wood Stoves EPA Certified & CSA Certified?

Our Kimberly™ and Katydid™ wood stoves are EPA Certified & CSA Certified.

Kimberly™ provides an exceptionally clean burn, emitting just 3.2 grams/hour in EPA testing, as compared 7.5 grams/hour allowed by current federal EPA standards and 4.5 grams/hour allowed by Washington state standards.

Our Katydid™ wood stove was certified at 1.9 grams/hour, exceeding the new federal EPA standards for the year 2020 and exceeding the standards for Washington state and Fairbanks, Alaska. Katydid™ is one of the cleanest-burning non-catalytic wood stoves on the market today.

What Kind of Fuel Do Your Wood Stoves Burn?

As wood stoves, Kimberly™ and Katydid™ were designed to burn regular cordwood, although given the size of their fireboxes, cordwood should be cut shorter than for stoves with larger fireboxes.

Also, many people burn extruded logs because they are convenient. However, never burn sawdust logs, which contain waxes or paraffins.

Remember to always burn wood that contains 20% moisture content or less, as verified by a moisture meter. Hard wood that has been well-seasoned will produce far more heat and far less creosote than soft wood or wet wood.

 

What Size Logs Should I Burn?

Kimberly™ can accommodate one log of 4-inches in diameter and up to 9.5-inches in length.  Most people find that loading two logs of a shorter length is easier than loading a single log of a longer length inside Kimberly’s tiny combustion chamber.

Katydid™ has a much bigger firebox and can accommodate more logs and a bigger diameter than Kimberly™. We find that logs cut to 8-inches in length work the best.

How Are Your Gasifier Wood Stoves Better Than Pellet Stoves?

Pellet stoves will provide a more consistent room temperature than a wood stove during the day while you are absent or at night while you are sleeping. This is because they are self-feeding by use of electricity, except for one model which is gravity-fed. This, we believe, is where the advantage ends.

When your power goes out due to a winter storm or during a long-term emergency, a pellet stove will leave you cold because they need electricity. While many pellet stoves have a 72 battery for back-up, how will you keep warm if your electricity is out for a longer period? Also, a pellet stove will be hostage to the availability and affordability of pellets. If you are unable to purchase pellets, you cannot burn an alternative fuel.

The charm of a wood stove over any other heat source is not only the warm glow of the flames, but the unquestioned reliability of wood heat.

With that said, some wood stoves need electricity for startup or monitoring moisture content in their fuel, and this type of wood stove will still be inoperable when the grid goes down.

Your fuel options are much greater with a Kimberly™ or Katydid™ gasifier wood stove. With no moving parts to wear out or fail and no electricity needed to start or operate, your Kimberly™ or Katydid™ gasifier wood stove will keep you warm in good times and in bad.

How Do I Vent Your Wood Stoves?

Our Kimberly™ wood stove is certified to use 3-inch double-wall stainless steel pellet stove pipe with a Class A pass-through thimble at the ceiling, attic and roof.  This unique venting system saves owners hundreds of dollars in installation costs, perhaps as much as $1200 in savings, simply because pellet stove pipe is far less costly than using Class A chimney pipe as other wood stoves require.

Katydid™ uses 4-inch double-wall stainless steel pellet stove pipe with Class A pass-through thimble at ceiling, attic, and roof, also saving owners hundreds of dollars in installation costs.

Most people find that installing a Kimberly™ and Katydid™ wood stove is easy for the Do-It-Yourselfer. Please consult the Kimberly™ or Katydid™ Owner’s Manuals for appropriate installation instructions. Feel free to contact us for further information regarding your specific venting needs.

Can I Vent Your Stoves Out of a Wall, Instead of Through the Roof?

In Unforgettable Fire, LLC Owner and Inventor Roger Lehet’s 30 years of selling and installing wood stoves, he has always preferred to vent straight through the roof at all times. There are a few instances where this becomes impossible due to construction styles, but it is rare.

When venting any wood stove out of a wall, the cost of installation increases substantially. Also, the flue is exposed to cold outside air, which can cool the exhaust temperatures and negatively impact the performance of the chimney. This method also allows heat to be transferred to the outside, rather than kept inside the home where it belongs. Additionally, horizontal runs with elbows put back pressure on the venting system, which can cause hard starts and smoke spillage when opening the door for reloading.

In effect, your Kimberly™ or Katydid™ is the “heart” of your wood stove installation, and the chimney is the “lungs.” The heart can not function properly if the lungs do not provide it with sufficient oxygen.

Whenever possible, always install your venting vertically inside the house, through the ceiling and roof. This is is true not only of our Kimberly™ and Katydid™ gasifier wood stoves, but it is true of all other wood stoves as well.

Which Is Better: A Catalytic or a Non-Catalytic Wood Stove?

In catalytic wood stoves, the smoke flows through a coated ceramic honeycomb device contained within the firebox, allowing smoke particles and gases to ignite and burn. This is much like a car’s catalytic converter. Even though catalytic stoves are capable of producing long, even heat output, there are many disadvantages in this technology:

    1. Many owners of catalytic wood stoves find that they need to “babysit” a catalytic wood stove until it heats sufficiently to activate the catalytic element.
    2. If at any time a catalytic wood stove is over-fired, or fueled with inappropriate material (such as treated wood or household trash), the catalyst may fail in as little as two years. Burn paper printed with colored inks or have a stray nail end up in the combustion chamber? The catalytic element will be immediately rendered useless. Six years of use can be expected from a well-maintained catalytic stove using only appropriate fuels: Even under the best of conditions the catalytic element will degrade and require replacement, which is expensive.
    3. The mining and processing of catalytic elements is costly to the environment, not to mention there are the political considerations and risks of mining the catalytic elements in the volatile Middle East.
    4. When spent, Catalytic elements must be disposed of, causing an unnecessary burden to our landfills.

Kimberly™ and Katydid™ are non-catalytic wood stoves. Unforgettable Fire, LLC has developed the means to get catalytic action from a non-catalytic wood stove by use of gasification technology.

Our non-catalytic Kimberly™ gasifier wood stove was EPA-certified and CSA-certified at 3.2 grams per hour particulate, well under the Washington state emissions standards of 4.5 grams per hour.

Our non-catalytic Katydid™ gasifier wood stove was EPA-certified and CSA-certified at 1.9 grams per hour particulate, making Katydid™ one of the cleanest-burning non-catalytic wood stoves on the planet.

Why Are Your Kimberly™ Wood Stoves so Costly?

When considering the price of any new wood stove, always consider TOTAL installation costs, not just the cost of the stove itself. Even a “free” wood stove can quickly become a $2,000 investment by the time you add in the cost of Class A chimney pipe, hearth pad, shipping and installation labor.

However, because Kimberly™ is OMNI-Test Labs Listed to vent with 3-inch double-wall stainless steel pellet stove pipe, which is much less costly than Class A chimney pipe, the reduced cost of installation makes Kimberly™ competitive with other high-end wood stoves.

Our Katydid™ gasifier wood stove is OMNI-Test Labs Listed to vent with double-wall stainless steel pellet stove pipe as well, using a 4-inch diameter.

For specifics on the installation requirements for each stove and your particular installation, please download the appropriate Kimberly™ or Katydid™ Owner’s Manuals.

Additionally, Kimberly™ is made of high quality heat and corrosion resistant stainless steel. There are 118 laser-cut and hand-welded parts inside, which are made from domestic feed stock by American workers, all of whom pay taxes and support our country. Six years were devoted to research and development, and the certification testing alone cost $40,000. It will be some time before these costs are recouped.

On the other hand, by replacing expensive or environmentally unfriendly options such as gas, electric, or oil heat, Kimberly™ is a sound investment, which can be recouped in as little as 1-2 years. Due to Kimberly’s reliability and portability, Kimberly™ might even save your life in a natural or man-made disaster, when other options fail. At that point, Kimberly™ becomes priceless.

Quality does not come cheap in this world, and we at Unforgettable Fire, LLC refuse to produce any product that is less than top quality.

 

When Will Your Optional Accessories Be Available?

For information about the thermo-electric generators and baking ovens visit our accessories page and then contact your Authorized Dealer for information on pricing and availability.

How Is a Gasifier Stove Different From a Rocket Stove?

The Kimberly™ stove and the Katydid™ stove are gasifier wood stoves, not rocket stoves.

When a Kimberly™ or Katydid™ wood stove is dampered down, the fuel maintains an approximate 450-degree Fahrenheit temperature as it burns, thus creating massive amounts of smoky gases. As the smokey gases rise to the top of the combustion chamber in our Kimberly™ or Katydid™ wood stoves, the gasses ignite and burn at a very high temperature.

The bulk of the heat produced in our Kimberly™ and Katydid™ wood stoves comes from the secondary combustion process, which produces a very efficient and clean burn, with very little smoke emitting from the chimney.

On the other hand, while rocket stoves burn very hot and clean, they are not very efficient. Rocket stoves are hungry and consume lots of fuel.

What Grade Stainless Steel Is Used in Kimberly™?

We use Type 304 grade of stainless steel for our Kimberly™ gasifier wood stove. Type 304 is noted for its ability to withstand extremely high temperatures and highly corrosive environments over long periods of time. Unfortunately, as well as being very durable, Type 304 stainless steel is also very costly.

Can I Burn Saltwater Driftwood in My Kimberly™ Stove?

According to the Department of Toxicology Division of the Washington State Department of Ecology, burning saltwater driftwood is hazardous to the environment and to human health.

The salt residue, which remains in the pores of the wood even when dry, contains chlorine atoms. The chlorine forms dioxins during combustion, creating chemicals that are toxic to the immune system and known to be carcinogenic (cancer-causing).

For your own health and that of the planet, never burn saltwater driftwood.

 


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