Loading of Coal

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Post Thu. Nov. 22, 2007 11:40 am

After fire is burning hot with nice blue flame should coal be loaded evenly in the firebox? I burn nut coal, I fill the stove up to the top of the fire brick, but by doing that coal banks down to the front of the door, I guess causing an uneven burn. Burns about 12 hours, then start to lose fire, with a lot of ash in the front of the stove.

Can anyone help? I am a first time coal burner

F Frantz

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Hand Fed Coal Stove: Modified Russo C-35
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Post Thu. Nov. 22, 2007 12:03 pm

I don't now as you have to fill to the "top of the brick". I'd level the top of the coal with the door or where it might normally fall (below door). I think, they usually burn more toward the front, as that would be the area where the fresh air would be directed.

The fire won't need fresh coal "as soon as the blue flames occur". It will burn from the bottom up. After some of the bottom has gone to ash, then it can be raked down and fresh coal applied.

I've become an advocate of manual pipe drafts for hand fired. I think, a pipe draft will slow the air through the coal and might allow for a more even diffusion of the fresh air going through the coal. ??

Visit Hitzer Stoves

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Post Thu. Nov. 22, 2007 2:27 pm

Hello F Frantz, welcome to the forum. It sounds like you are burning your coal stove to the limit. If you are filling the firebox to the top of the firebrick then you are using the maximum amount of coal in the stove. Most stoves will have the coal slope down in the front when filled to the top of the brick in the back.

If you are only getting 12 hours of burn out of your stove, you must be running pretty hot. Do you have a thermometer on the stove or the flue pipe?? Do you need all the heat you are currently getting from the stove?? Are you running a fan on the stove to wash the heat off the stove body and into the room?

If you have burnt the coal down to just ash in 12 hours, then there is nothing to do but add more coal more often. Or maybe just turn down the air inlet control to a lower level to get a few more hours of burn time.

I do not advocate a manual hand damper or 'pipe draft' without using a manometer to read the draft on the stove body ANYTIME the manual draft is closed AT ALL. These coal stoves make Carbon Monoxide, and the chimney MUST pull anough draft to not only pull air from the fire, but pull a slight vacuum on the stove body and piping. If a manual draft is closed and the draft falls too low, then there is a risk of Carbon Monoxide in your house....

How will the draft fall too low?? By reducing the hot gas flow up the chimney, the weather warms up, or the winds drop, or even turning on the clothes dryer and bathroom fan in the house. Any of these can cause less draft. So I believe in NOT using any manual method of blocking the chimney without a draft gauge on the stove measuring draft over the fire.

And of course at least one or two Carbon Monoxide detectors in the stove's room

Greg L

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