Shortened Firebox... Front or Back?

Modern and vintage hand fired coal stove are similar to a wood stove and in some cases can burn either. They need to be regulated and fed by hand usually every 12 to 24 hours depending on your usage. They require no power to operate making them ideal for rural settings with long power outages.
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mudnut
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Stove/Furnace Make: Brunco
Stove/Furnace Model: Brunco 150
Location: McKean County, PA

Post Mon. Dec. 03, 2012 12:15 pm

Ok if anyone has been keeping up with my nubieness on other posts I'm amazed at the amount of coal that I'm going through. I can easily fit 3 40# bags of nut anth in my Brunco and am burning about 2 bags a day even with the mild winter that we've been having.

I've got an MPD that is run almost closed, not 90 degrees but just so the edges contact the pipe (6 inch flue). Draft blower adjuster is closed 3/4 of the way, no baro.

I know that I have to replace my ash door gasket, thought it was ok but took the door off last night when I was filling the hungry beast up and it does need to be replaced. Will pick some up on the way home tonight and I know that will help but it's only bad in once spot and not leaking around the whole door.

I figured out that if I disconnect the shaking rod from 1 or 2 of the shakers I could fill some area with brick which would in effect shorten my firebox and decrease the amount of coal that my burner will hold without decreasing the depth of the coal. I figure that it's easily reversed if I don't like the burn times. My question to the experienced burners is this. My stove has a draft handle that slides a V shaped piece of plate steel from the front to the back of the burner to direct the heat and gasses to the flue. Understanding that when I have that "closed" the heat and gases take a longer path to the flue. If I add the bricks to the back of the firebox to shorten it from that direction then most of the fire will be sitting below the "open" portion of that draft control. Would it be better to shorten the box from the front and keep the heat taking the long route to the flue?
“Until the 20th century, reality was everything humans could touch, smell, see and hear. Since the initial publication of the charged electromagnetic spectrum, humans learned that what they can touch, smell, see, and hear…is less than one millionth of reality”

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michaelanthony
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Post Mon. Dec. 03, 2012 1:37 pm

There are folks that partition the fire box from the rear with a steel plate and fire brick. I believe you have a convection blower at the front, so I would shorten the box from the rear for ease of operation and performance reasons. I wouldn't think the gases care where they originate from inside the furnace same as a fire that was dying in the rear. Just my 2cents. Mike
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mudnut
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Stove/Furnace Make: Brunco
Stove/Furnace Model: Brunco 150
Location: McKean County, PA

Post Mon. Dec. 03, 2012 1:54 pm

I know the gases will find their way out, I just wasn't sure about placement of the "filler" the fan is up front but the back half is covered by the draft controller (which really doesn't control much more than the path that the gasses take). I could see the benefit in both scenarios, bricks in back bring the fire closer to the draft blower, bricks in front keep the fire over the steel plate forcing the heat to stay in the stove a little longer.

I picked up some red clay bricks to try this idea out. I know they won't last as long as firebricks but they will give me an idea of how this thing will work with a shorter firebox. If I like It I will have some steel plate cut and pony up for the firebricks.
“Until the 20th century, reality was everything humans could touch, smell, see and hear. Since the initial publication of the charged electromagnetic spectrum, humans learned that what they can touch, smell, see, and hear…is less than one millionth of reality”

Boots
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Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Burnham SFB 101 (sold)
Location: Central PA

Post Mon. Dec. 03, 2012 7:01 pm

i do not know much about your setup, or about anything for that matter but, I would say you need a baro damper. What kind of draft are you pulling? If you have excessive draft that could be part of the reason you are burning an excessive amount of coal.

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mudnut
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Stove/Furnace Make: Brunco
Stove/Furnace Model: Brunco 150
Location: McKean County, PA

Post Sun. Dec. 09, 2012 2:25 pm

Ok shortening my firebox was no bueno, burned less coal but didn't produce enough heat... since the temps here are in the 40s and 50s during the day right now I've switched back to wood for the time being. Once Christmas and the related costs are over I will order up some new shaker grate rockers as 4 of mine are warped and that lets too much good coal through when I shake. I'll also pick up a manometer and check my draw, install a baro if necessary and we'll try this again.

I want to have everything in place once winter really sets in, once the daily temps are in the teens I'll want the reliability of coal back.

I would really like to look into a coal/gas fired boiler, I know that it would be much more efficient than the furnace that I'm using now and I don't want the mess or cost of burning oil just not sure how many options there are for that as I only have 1 flue for the boiler.
“Until the 20th century, reality was everything humans could touch, smell, see and hear. Since the initial publication of the charged electromagnetic spectrum, humans learned that what they can touch, smell, see, and hear…is less than one millionth of reality”

Boots
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Posts: 196
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Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Burnham SFB 101 (sold)
Location: Central PA

Post Sun. Dec. 09, 2012 6:38 pm

mudnut wrote:I would really like to look into a coal/gas fired boiler, I know that it would be much more efficient than the furnace that I'm using now and I don't want the mess or cost of burning oil just not sure how many options there are for that as I only have 1 flue for the boiler.
I do not know much about multi fuel boilers but, I do know that a power Venter or adding a second chimney would probably be Cheaper than buying a new or even use multi fuel appliance.

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mudnut
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Stove/Furnace Make: Brunco
Stove/Furnace Model: Brunco 150
Location: McKean County, PA

Post Mon. Dec. 10, 2012 8:31 am

Boots wrote:
mudnut wrote:I would really like to look into a coal/gas fired boiler, I know that it would be much more efficient than the furnace that I'm using now and I don't want the mess or cost of burning oil just not sure how many options there are for that as I only have 1 flue for the boiler.
I do not know much about multi fuel boilers but, I do know that a power Venter or adding a second chimney would probably be Cheaper than buying a new or even use multi fuel appliance.
Well I've actually got 2 chimney's one for the coal/wood furnace and one across the room with a double flue, one for the fireplace and one for the oil boiler that's awaiting it's demise (or sale if somebody needs it). There's no way I'm paying $3+ per gallon for heating oil when coal and wood are so cheap. No natural gas up our road yet but that is supposed to change this summer.
“Until the 20th century, reality was everything humans could touch, smell, see and hear. Since the initial publication of the charged electromagnetic spectrum, humans learned that what they can touch, smell, see, and hear…is less than one millionth of reality”

Boots
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Posts: 196
Joined: Thu. Nov. 10, 2011 4:38 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Burnham SFB 101 (sold)
Location: Central PA

Post Mon. Dec. 10, 2012 5:35 pm

with that many flues you could just install an assortment of appliances and just use whatever strikes your fancy at the moment

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Bootstrap
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Post Tue. Dec. 11, 2012 7:09 am

I would say right off the bat, you should get that door fixed. Two bags a day is alot of coal, If I burned that much my house would be 90 degrees. I don't know much about your stove but I saw a good deal of more effeciency when I switched out from my Warm Morning 523 to my much, much newer Harman Mark 1 and even more with my Hitzer 30-95. Others will say I'm full of crap but I fully believe the newer stoves are a better design.
Multi fuel stoves are a horrible idea. They are not optimized for any one fuel, so they are not good at burning either one. You might end up burning more coal than you do now with a multi fuel stove.
Don't get too fooled with natural gas. I have it. I can say whole heartedly that my heating costs are about 25% less with coal. Because running my Hitzer is a piece of cake with almost no work what so ever, burning coal is worth it to me.
throw in the supply/delivery/screw you up the rear charges and nat gas suddenly isn't that cheap.
I pick coal up and put it down.............in my stove!

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mudnut
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Posts: 46
Joined: Thu. Nov. 08, 2012 5:41 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Brunco
Stove/Furnace Model: Brunco 150
Location: McKean County, PA

Post Tue. Dec. 11, 2012 11:00 am

Bootstrap wrote:I would say right off the bat, you should get that door fixed. Two bags a day is alot of coal, If I burned that much my house would be 90 degrees. I don't know much about your stove but I saw a good deal of more effeciency when I switched out from my Warm Morning 523 to my much, much newer Harman Mark 1 and even more with my Hitzer 30-95. Others will say I'm full of crap but I fully believe the newer stoves are a better design.
Multi fuel stoves are a horrible idea. They are not optimized for any one fuel, so they are not good at burning either one. You might end up burning more coal than you do now with a multi fuel stove.
Don't get too fooled with natural gas. I have it. I can say whole heartedly that my heating costs are about 25% less with coal. Because running my Hitzer is a piece of cake with almost no work what so ever, burning coal is worth it to me.
throw in the supply/delivery/screw you up the rear charges and nat gas suddenly isn't that cheap.
Hey Bootstrap, the doors are good, new gaskets on both load and ash door and they both seal tight. My grates are warped pretty badly, I was so used to pulling the ash box and dumping every 4 or 5 days with wood that I unknowingly let the coal ash build up and by the time I dumped it for the first time by grate was toast.

I'm only thinking about a coal/gas boiler as it would be nice to have gas as a back up if we're going to be out of town. Coal would be the primary fuel source. I've already realized the benefits of burning coal, just need to fine tune the flue suction and replace the grates and I'll be back in business. It's been so warm here lately that I'm fine burning wood for now but once the temps start to head South I will want the extended burn times of coal, by then I'll have the shakers replaced and a manometer installed (and probably a baro).
“Until the 20th century, reality was everything humans could touch, smell, see and hear. Since the initial publication of the charged electromagnetic spectrum, humans learned that what they can touch, smell, see, and hear…is less than one millionth of reality”

User avatar
Bootstrap
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Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
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Post Tue. Dec. 11, 2012 2:43 pm

He he...yea you gotta keep an eye on that ash pan... :?
I pick coal up and put it down.............in my stove!

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