Frequently asked Questions – General

Does the burner require a blower?

Yes. Because the burner’s plenum needs to be pressurized in order to have all the orifices burn evenly, you will need a blower. A venturi or “atmospheric” system using only high pressure gas will not work.

Will the burner run on either propane or natural gas?

Yes. The burners work equally well with either fuel.

Are these burners suitable for all applications?

No. Our burners are designed to fire relatively large chambers. If the firing chamber is less than 0.75 cubic feet in volume, even our mini-burner would be too big.

These burners are also designed to be turned on full blast and bring the appliance up to working temperature as quickly as possible. Good examples would be glory holes for glassblowing and forges for metalworking. These burners are not designed to operate at low settings like those required to slowly bring a glass crucible or pottery kiln up to temperature. There are, however, several people using our burners with invested crucible glass furnaces and small color glass furnaces using assay type crucibles.

How do I position the burner in the chamber?

The burner can be mounted in any position. Top and side fire seem to be the most popular. If the firing chamber is round, it is not necessary to mount the burner on a tangent. It is OK to mount the burner on a tangent, and some prefer to do so, but it usually makes installation more difficult. The burner is normally centered front to back in the chamber, but if you prefer one end of the chamber to be a little hotter you can move the burner in that direction.

LP390 mounted at 10 o’clock

LP190 burner bolted on for side fire

Mini-burner top mounted in small forge

How does the burner mount in the appliance?

The burners are designed to be sealed into the wall of the appliance. Once in place they actually become part of the wall. When the burner is initially placed in the wall, there should be a gap of about .25″ to .375″ between burner and wall. Once the burner is bolted in place the gap is packed tight with high temperature fiber insulation. Under no circumstances should the appliance be allowed to exhaust around the burner.

Bricking in the burner

Burner sealed in place

How much gas pressure do I need?

Our burners will run on as little as 7″ WC natural gas (standard residential pressure) up to 15 psi of propane. Low gas pressures require larger pipes and valves to supply the required BTU’s. This becomes more of a concern with the larger burners. Once you know your blower output pressure, we can quote you BTU requirements to insure your plumber or utility installs adequate supply pipe.

What is a gas/air mixer, and do I need one?

The Pine Ridge Burner is a premix type burner. This means that the air from the blower must be combined with the fuel prior to entering the burner. The point at which the air and fuel combine is referred to as the mixer. There are many different mixer designs, from inexpensive and homemade, to expensive and high tech. They all do basically the same thing, some just do it better than others. We sell a simple mixer that works well with our burners. For some applications the more high tech mixers are well worth the money, and in some cases even necessary. See our “links to suppliers” for more information.

How a mixer works

One style of gas/air mixer

Should I install a safety system?

The burner should be installed according to all federal, state and local plumbing and electrical codes. In some locations an “attended appliance” (an operator in attendance at all times) requires only an easily accessible emergency shut-off valve on the gas supply line. Many appliances built using our burners rely on this system. Check with your local building inspector and Fire Marshal to see what’s required for your installation.

If your appliance will be left running unattended, we recommend installing a normally closed solenoid valve on the gas supply line. Run electrical power through an air sensing switch to the solenoid valve and blower motor (see schematic below). Use a normally open momentary switch to jumper over the air switch at start up. Once the system is running, air pressure from the blower closes the air switch which opens the solenoid valve and maintains blower power. In case of power interruption or blower failure, the air switch opens and the solenoid shuts off the fuel. The entire system stays off until it is manually restarted with the jumper switch. This “proof of air” system also insures that, at light up, no fuel can be supplied to the burner without combustion air from the blower. This system does not protect against flame-out. Flame-out protection requires installing UV detection hardware. If flame-out detection is required for your installation, or you feel it is necessary, please contact one of the companies listed in our “links to suppliers” for further information.

Typical “proof of air” safety system

Is this burner system a “do-it-yourself” project?

It is for most people. It does require basic knowledge of plumbing and electricity. Our burners come with written instructions, working drawings of burner installation, and schematics of typical gas/air plumbing systems. There is also a CD-ROM available for more in depth instructions. You will need to be able to read and understand this material. If you do not possess these skills, you should seek help from someone that does.

The basic “LP” system is very straight forward. The “GH” system requires a bit more plumbing and a few more parts. (See photos and schematics below). If you choose not to do it yourself, there are several manufacturers listed in our “links to suppliers” that build high quality equipment using our burners.

All the information we supply is true and correct to the best of our knowledge. It works well for us because we understand it. Since we have no control over the consumers interpretation, understanding, or implementation of this information, the consumer uses it at their own risk. Our burners leave the factory in perfect working order. Since we have no control over the shipping, installation, or use, we will assume no liability for the safety or performance of any appliance built using these burners.