Pellets

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MJ80
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Pellets

Post by MJ80 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:57 pm

Do any of you make pellets with your sawdust. What volume do you produce? Looking into a biomass boiler and a little pellet machine.

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Re: Pellets

Post by york33 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:18 pm

Considered it, but then you also need a hammer mill for pellets (making your sawdust smaller) or to turn it into briquettes instead, which seemed to result in more expensive machines. I looked a couple of years back and gave up, now it goes (for free) to a bloke with a horse! I look on it as a self emptying sawdust shed!

That said, I'd be very interested if you do find anything cheap/decent.........

George Fisher
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Re: Pellets

Post by George Fisher » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:29 am

I did toy with the idea of building a small briquette machine myself but it's pretty complicated it seems. Commercial ones are all huge and £10000

I wish someone did an inexpensive machine I could chuck in the corner as my central heating is wood fired.

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Re: Pellets

Post by mark270981 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:55 am

I've been looking into this myself and I'm not getting very far at all, we seem to produce about 400kg a week of scrap wood when we are in full flow.

I think retail value of pellets is a quid a kg.

Unless the machine for me was fully automated it simply wouldn't be worth commercially

However I was more interested in having a biomass boiler installed at the new house, at 5k for the boiler itself it wouldn't be long before it pays for itself
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Re: Pellets

Post by jfc » Mon Dec 16, 2013 8:55 am

I looked into it aswell and got no where . The pressure needed to make the wood react and stick together is massive so no DIY pellet maker is going to work .
The guys at timbawood installed one last year . I think they said it cost @20k :shock: I was given a van load of pellets for free and they burn well but I can buy a 10kg bag of coal for £3.99 and that burns a hell of a lot better .
My own saw dust now serves the chickens of Hanworth :D I also drop two bags at a time into the local ( sell everything ) shop and he sells them for £10 a bag :lol:

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Re: Pellets

Post by MJ80 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:56 am

It seems like we are all hitting the same wall. We are looking at places to buy over in Germany and most are oil fired which is really expensive. Pellets don't work out much cheaper but the thought of all my waste doing something useful is really tempting.

I was convinced that the chineese pellet machines would be OK, but saw an article that says they are for making animal food and not designed for the constant attrition of driving sawdust through them and the gearboxes go on them. Has anyone actually tried them or is it more conjecture? The thought of having a auger driven pellet store in the basement is brilliant. Just empty the pellets into and free heating. Ill have a look into any grants that are available over here, but I think that would interfere with my plans of staying under the radar. :(

Also was trying to work out the volume of pellets per bag of sawdust to see at which point it would be economical to invest. I saw a brilliant silo extractor on ebay over here which acts as a hopper to a pellet mill, but finding house and new workshop ........ Boring

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Re: Pellets

Post by tusses » Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:51 pm

im reading up on rocket mass heaters and hoping i can burn saw dust and off cuts in one.

I find sawdust burns ok in a log burner if you put it in a bag in the stove, then it tends to keep it's shape and burn like a log.

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Re: Pellets

Post by thatsnotafestool » Mon Dec 16, 2013 2:10 pm

Didn't British Hardwood or someone have a burner designed to take just sawdust?
The advantage of a bad memory is that one enjoys several times the same good things for the first time.
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Re: Pellets

Post by thatsnotafestool » Mon Dec 16, 2013 2:11 pm

mark270981 wrote:.....we seem to produce about 400kg a week of scrap wood when we are in full flow.
...
Can I please bring my trailer ?
The advantage of a bad memory is that one enjoys several times the same good things for the first time.
Friedrich Nietzsche

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Re: Pellets

Post by mark270981 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:26 pm

thatsnotafestool wrote:
mark270981 wrote:.....we seem to produce about 400kg a week of scrap wood when we are in full flow.
...
Can I please bring my trailer ?
Feel free
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Re: Pellets

Post by Peter Sefton » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:42 pm

A mate of mine that runs a big workshop (30 makers) leased an automated biomass heating system but gave it back after 18 months. It kept breaking down a they had one worker almost full time just keep unblocking and feeding it.
I looked into it when setting up the furniture school but thought it was to expensive so opted for a multi fuel stove in the machine shop and a saw dust burner in the hand tool room. http://www.stovesonline.co.uk/wood_burn ... stove.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
It works well, was cheap to set up and burns all our waste.
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Re: Pellets

Post by Leveller2911 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 8:06 pm

Peter Sefton wrote:I looked into it when setting up the furniture school but thought it was to expensive so opted for a multi fuel stove in the machine shop and a saw dust burner in the hand tool room. http://www.stovesonline.co.uk/wood_burn ... stove.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
It works well, was cheap to set up and burns all our waste.

We have been looking into Briquette machines for a couple of years but they work out far too expensive. Regarding the workshop heating, just out of interest Peter what company does your workshop insurance?. Our company won't allow naked flame within the workshop. Tried to shop around with insurers and no one will entertain naked flame in workshops. Tried NFU,Towergate etc.

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Re: Pellets

Post by JamesG » Mon Dec 16, 2013 8:46 pm

Recently bought a Mythos briquette press and found its excellent although I don't think I would buy one to make an extra income. The sole reason I bought mine was to keep the 2 log burners going at home. For every 2X200L extraction bag I get a black bin full. There is only me and some times one other in the workshop and i make WAY more than I need, I usually give them away to customers who have wood burners as a nice gesture. You also need to keep them sealed as I've found if you leave them exposed they swell with the moisture and become loose.

James

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Re: Pellets

Post by Peter Sefton » Mon Dec 16, 2013 8:50 pm

Aviva cover our workshops but this is under a school policy (not cheap) but they are aware of our wood burners.
Peter Sefton

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http://www.peterseftonfurnitureschool.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Pellets

Post by MJ80 » Tue Dec 17, 2013 8:00 am

Looking more into the biomass boilers and I see that they have a reputation for being quite tempramental. Its going to be an interesting decision when it gets down to it.

Can the briquetting machines run a smaller die to make pelletts?

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Re: Pellets

Post by woodpecker » Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:14 pm

mark270981 wrote:However I was more interested in having a biomass boiler installed at the new house, at 5k for the boiler itself it wouldn't be long before it pays for itself
Taking into account the loss of interest on capital, depreciation and notoriously high maintenance cost of biomass boilers I doubt it would ever pay for itself in a small scale or domestic situation.

Richard

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