Emptying Ash - Dealing With Dust

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.
treysgt
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Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: Mark1
Location: Hunterdon County, NJ

Post Mon. Feb. 11, 2008 9:27 pm

I am a few weeks into my Harman Mark 1 and generally happy and impressed with the unit. I've had it going steadily for over a week and have a good feel for when I need to shake it and reload. Only thing I have yet to figure out is the best way to deal with the dust from the ash. Our stove is in our living room so the cleaner I can keep the pan emptying procedure, the better. I had been emptying the pan outside into an extra hod, but then the dust blows all over the porch. I just bought a 6-gal metal pail with lid that I was sure would allow my to 'seal' the dust in while I transfered from the Mark1's pan. Not much better. Just wanted to poll to see if anyone has a simple dust-free procedure for emptying the pan.

Thanks -Trey
Harman Mk1 in the living room, Hitzer 30-95 in basement

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CoalHeat
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Stoker Coal Boiler: 1959 EFM 350
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Magnafire Mark I
Baseburners & Antiques: Sears Signal Oak 15 & Andes Kitchen Range
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Fisher Fireplace Insert
Location: Stillwater, New Jersey

Post Mon. Feb. 11, 2008 9:33 pm

No such thing exists, esp. when the wind is blowing.
Obviously I shut the blower off before I do anything with the stove, my problem is I keep forgetting to turn it back on. I installed a switch in the connection box, easier then unplugging it every time (I ended up installing a switch for the wall receptacle that also controls the blower to the kitchen heat-transfer duct).
Guess you should just empty the ash a little farther from the house!. I emptied the Alaska ashpan in the cellar once. Now I carry it outside as well.
Heating a circa 1832 farmhouse with a Harman Magnafire Mark I & a 1959 EFM 350 (heating DHW).
100% Oil Free!
"It's what we learn after we think we know it all that counts."

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gambler
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Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer
Location: western Pa

Post Mon. Feb. 11, 2008 9:43 pm

I carry the ash about 15 feet out from the house and dump it into a metal trash can making sure I stand upwind of course. Like wood n coal said "No such thing exists".

edit: I keep 3 of these cans, 1 working can and 2 full. When I get 3 full I will take one by dolly or sled and fill potholes in my 450ft gravel driveway. The remaining full ones are kept for use on the ice that covers the driveway after a snow. Works real well for anti-skid.
Last edited by gambler on Mon. Feb. 11, 2008 10:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Take Care and God Bless
Rick

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steinkebunch
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Stove/Furnace Make: Homemade Bituminous Hand-Fed
Stove/Furnace Model: Prill underfed stoker Model M8
Location: Wyoming

Post Mon. Feb. 11, 2008 10:04 pm

I have a home-made hand-fed, but patterned after the Mark III. My ash pan is 16"x16"x8" deep. It will hold about 2 or 3 days of ash from my Wyoming high-volatile, high-ash bitumnous coal. I load every 12 hours. Every few days, I will emty the ash pan 12 hours after the last "shaking", just prior to shaking again. By then, my ashes are cool enough that I can dump them directly into our metal dumpster in the alley. It is a little heavy (40 lbs or so), but it's better than trying to lift an entire garbage can of ash, or dump the pan every 12 hours.

I have never had a dumpster fire with this method (though I did have one when I dumped it after only waiting about 3 hours! :rambo2: ). It's best if I can dump the ash before the neighbor or the wife puts any garbage in the dumpster, but I do it even if garbage is present.

However, I noticed that the bottom of the steel dumpster is rusting out very quickly. I believe that the garbage truck will get a surprise very soon when the entire dumpster load of garbage falls out of the dumpster bottom when the truck picks it up. Maybe that's part of my garbage fee? :oops:

Another way I keep my in-house mess down is with some "funnels" I built under my grates. I cut some sheet-metal and attached some funnels under my grates (to what I call "grate yokes" that hold my grate axles). The funnels direct the ash into the pan, instead of letting alot of it fall beside the ash pan. I now only scoop "escaped" ashes out of the stove about once every week or two instead of every day or two. With a few mods to the funnels when I get time, I'll only need to scoop about once a season.

Steinke

treysgt
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Posts: 60
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Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: Mark1
Location: Hunterdon County, NJ

Post Mon. Feb. 11, 2008 10:48 pm

steinkebunch wrote: ...
Another way I keep my in-house mess down is with some "funnels" I built under my grates. I cut some sheet-metal and attached some funnels under my grates (to what I call "grate yokes" that hold my grate axles). The funnels direct the ash into the pan, instead of letting alot of it fall beside the ash pan. I now only scoop "escaped" ashes out of the stove about once every week or two instead of every day or two. With a few mods to the funnels when I get time, I'll only need to scoop about once a season.

Steinke
that is another good point - the pan that comes with the Marks almost seems like an afterthought. It seems to me they intentionally undersized it to allow you to cram it back in to the bottom even when there is scads of ash still in the bottom chamber. (kind of like something you'd get in an engineering meeting at 4:30 on a Friday) So I end up getting around 90% of the ash in the pan. The funnel/yoke idea sounds like a great idea - if you get a chance for some photos I would appreciate it.
Harman Mk1 in the living room, Hitzer 30-95 in basement

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coalstoves
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Stove/Furnace Make: Harman and Liberty
Stove/Furnace Model: Magnum and Victory 700
Location: Mt.Carmel Pa. Located on The Western Middle Anthracite Field

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 4:56 am

I like when it snows cause I run out at night with my ash pan and chuck it in the street then the plow comes and Swooosh it's gone :lol:
"No Fuel Like An Old Fuel"

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coal berner
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Stoker Coal Boiler: 1986 Electric Furnace Man 520 DF
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Stove/Furnace Model: DF520
Location: Pottsville PA. Schuylkill County PA. The Hart Of Anthracite Coal Country.

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 6:01 am

coalstoves wrote:I like when it snows cause I run out at night with my ash pan and chuck it in the street then the plow comes and Swooosh it's gone :lol:
Hey coalstove Don't the town come around and pick the ash cans up any more up there They still do down here They use them on the Roads :?:
J.C.

Heating house & water with a 1986 electric furnace man DF520 using buckwheat Anthracite coal

lincolnmania
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Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 6:14 am

they pick the ash up here too though we use all of it on our own driveway and so does our neighbor that burns coal

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coalstoves
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Location: Mt.Carmel Pa. Located on The Western Middle Anthracite Field

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 6:36 am

coal berner wrote:
coalstoves wrote:I like when it snows cause I run out at night with my ash pan and chuck it in the street then the plow comes and Swooosh it's gone :lol:
Hey coalstove Don't the town come around and pick the ash cans up any more up there They still do down here They use them on the Roads :?:
Naw they don't do much of anything anymore .
"No Fuel Like An Old Fuel"

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Richard S.
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Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 10:56 am

treysgt wrote:Not much better. Just wanted to poll to see if anyone has a simple dust-free procedure for emptying the pan.
The only way you'd be able to almost completely eliminate it is if you had a lid that fit snugly over the ash pan. This lid would also need a fairly large funnel on one end. You'd also need a garbage can with a lid (or whatever you're dumping it into), the garbage can lid would need hole slightly larger than the funnel on your ash pan lid. The funnel would fit snugly when dump it into the garbage can so no dust could escape... Just let it sit for a while and the dust would settle.

I'm pretty sure someone mentioned a similar setup they had. Whatever the case the only way you can eliminate it is by not letting it escape.
"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."

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traderfjp
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Stove/Furnace Model: Channing 3
Location: New York

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 1:16 pm

I love my stove but I can see why oil and gas replaced most of the coal appliances in homes over the years. This morning it was 10 out and I had to go out to get coal and dumping the pan is really messy :sick: . However, I found that a plastic bag works best for dumping ash. I slip the pan into the bag and then flip the pan while closing the bag quickly. I've only had the bag melt once. This is the cleanest method I've found so far. It would be cool to have a disposable, aluminum liner with a top. But I guess the cost would add up quickly. Another idea is to get a garbage can and then cut a hole in the lid that is the same size as the ash pan. Then weld or screw a small lip around the ash pan. To dump you would flip the pan into the hole and wait for the dust to settle. Obviously 2 pans would be needed. Another cool option would be sides that fold up on the ash pan so when you are emptying the pan you could have a little more security so if you bump something ash isn't going to get out of the pan. When reinserting the pan the sides would fold down. I'm only talking about 2-3" flaps but it would be a great option for me.
Last edited by traderfjp on Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 5:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Disclaimer: I'm not an expert in any coal or plumbing related field. I only post my own experiences, research and common sense. If you choose to use any of the information in this post or any other post you do so at your own risk.

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italia899
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Location: NE Ohio

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 4:56 pm

treysgt wrote:Only thing I have yet to figure out is the best way to deal with the dust from the ash.
If you have black dust in your living room that is most likely coal dust, not fly ash. Dampen your coal prior to shoveling or pouring it into the hopper. This greatly cuts done on the coal dust. I use a 16oz spray bottle filled with water. The dampness of the coal will not affect its performance, and some may argue damp coal burns better than dry coal.

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CoalHeat
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Joined: Sat. Feb. 10, 2007 9:48 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1959 EFM 350
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Magnafire Mark I
Baseburners & Antiques: Sears Signal Oak 15 & Andes Kitchen Range
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Fisher Fireplace Insert
Location: Stillwater, New Jersey

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 6:34 pm

treysgt wrote:
steinkebunch wrote: ...
Another way I keep my in-house mess down is with some "funnels" I built under my grates. I cut some sheet-metal and attached some funnels under my grates (to what I call "grate yokes" that hold my grate axles). The funnels direct the ash into the pan, instead of letting alot of it fall beside the ash pan. I now only scoop "escaped" ashes out of the stove about once every week or two instead of every day or two. With a few mods to the funnels when I get time, I'll only need to scoop about once a season.

Steinke
that is another good point - the pan that comes with the Marks almost seems like an afterthought. It seems to me they intentionally undersized it to allow you to cram it back in to the bottom even when there is scads of ash still in the bottom chamber. (kind of like something you'd get in an engineering meeting at 4:30 on a Friday) So I end up getting around 90% of the ash in the pan. The funnel/yoke idea sounds like a great idea - if you get a chance for some photos I would appreciate it.
All the Mark series owners complain about the ash pan. I can't figure out why there aren't metal panels under the grates to deflect the ash into the pan, one on each side. I usually shake, empty the ash, do my poking up through the grates with my wire tool (ashpan still out) and then shovel all the ash out of the bottom of the stove before replacing the ash pan. If you are careful dumping the shoveled ash into the pan this can be done with a minimum of ash flying around.
I spray the coal with water as I'm filling the scuttle also.
Heating a circa 1832 farmhouse with a Harman Magnafire Mark I & a 1959 EFM 350 (heating DHW).
100% Oil Free!
"It's what we learn after we think we know it all that counts."

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steinkebunch
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Stove/Furnace Make: Homemade Bituminous Hand-Fed
Stove/Furnace Model: Prill underfed stoker Model M8
Location: Wyoming

Post Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 11:05 pm

Don't want to hi-jack this post, but I guess it relates to ash mess. Attached are a couple pics of my stove mod to get the ash to funnel into the pan. First pic is before funnel, next pic is after funnel installed. Of course you can't see the ash pan, because I removed it to take the photos. But the funnel does get the ash to all fall into the pan. I just need them about 1 inch longer to reach the stove front to get every bit of ash into the pan.
DSC02468.JPG
View of underneath grates from ash door
winter08 014.jpg
View after funnels added (grate connecting rod also removed and relocated to center of grate, to allow room for the funnel)
Steinke

treysgt
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Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: Mark1
Location: Hunterdon County, NJ

Post Wed. Feb. 13, 2008 11:23 am

steinkebunch wrote:Don't want to hi-jack this post, but I guess it relates to ash mess. Attached are a couple pics of my stove mod to get the ash to funnel into the pan. First pic is before funnel, next pic is after funnel installed. Of course you can't see the ash pan, because I removed it to take the photos. But the funnel does get the ash to all fall into the pan. I just need them about 1 inch longer to reach the stove front to get every bit of ash into the pan.

Steinke
That is some good rigging right there! I will see if I can fasten something similar under my Mark1 grates (once it is cool, and that might not be until Spring at this rate)

I suppose it does not need to be real heavy duty metal. Only issue I can think of is the left side where the shaker mechanism will probably get in the way. Thanks for the photos.
Harman Mk1 in the living room, Hitzer 30-95 in basement

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