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Old August 11th, 2017, 10:05 AM
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Default Bad / Toxic or metallic smoke smell

Hi, looking for some insight from others with home built evaporator / boilers. I have a home made vertical barrel burner with a truck rim inside for a burn grate, airflow from below and a smoke stack 8 feet high. Barrel top cut out to hold the syrup pan (8 gallon stainless braising pan). Works great, boils off 2 gallons / hr, and heats pan evenly.

My problem is the smoke. It smells toxic or metallic like burning coal sort-of. Even if It's burning clean - no smoke, it still had the same smell. I'm near other homes and don't want to be off-putting to the neighbors.

I'm using hardwoods fully seasoned and covered. I've been doing the same setup for 5 years.

Thanks for any ideas - I hope these pictures are descriptive
Attached Thumbnails
Bad / Toxic or metallic smoke smell-1620604_1426882987552632_287424764_n.jpg   Bad / Toxic or metallic smoke smell-1620848_1426882984219299_161284512_n.jpg   Bad / Toxic or metallic smoke smell-16825791_1850715448502715_4211641774750217896_o.jpg   Bad / Toxic or metallic smoke smell-16992049_1854572481450345_269110670316009171_o.jpg   Bad / Toxic or metallic smoke smell-16665749_1847776598796600_8564669873619891725_o.jpg  

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Old August 12th, 2017, 10:02 AM
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Is it coming out of the stack or do you smell it by the stack near your burner? I get a similar smell from my wood stove when I get it really cranking. Was the dog overcome by toxic smoke?
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Old August 12th, 2017, 09:38 PM
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It's the same either way. I just can't understand why it smells that way even when burning clean / no smoke. Its a black stove pipe too. Used to have a zinc coated vent pipe before I switched.

Dog is fine haha
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Old August 13th, 2017, 08:30 AM
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Just a guess, but my brother heats his quonset barn using a double barrel stove. When that gets good and hot it give off a metallic odor. I won't guess on it being toxic or not, but I suspect the steel in the barrel starts to break down when real hot. That being said, it doesn't seem to be a fast process, he's had the same double barrel set up for about 10 years, but it is only used maybe 30-40 times a winter. He has had to change the stack pipe at least 2x (every 3-4 years).
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Old August 13th, 2017, 06:48 PM
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I've had that metallic smell with my woodstove when it's burning super hot. I left the door open once with kindling and slab wood in it and went outside and got side tracked. Came inside and my whole house was a haze of metallic smelling smoke and pipes were smoking hot. After it cooled down the smell went away and pipes looked no different then they did before that. Paint was still good and no peeling or chipping. My guess Is the heat you are running your evaporator at is probley at the max point of the high heat paint on your drum or pipe. And the smoke smell is comming from the paint. I've also seen someone use automotive header paint for their woodstove and it always produced a weird metallic smell when it was going in his garage. I couldn't stand being in there.
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