The Right Coal Stove for Me?

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grizzly2
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Posts: 842
Joined: Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 7:18 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30 - 95
Coal Size/Type: pea and nut/ anthracite
Other Heating: Jotul #3 wood stove in garage. Oil backup in house. Electric backup in house.
Location: Whippleville, NY

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 11:03 am

I have been heating with wood for 30+ years and plan to switch to coal. Here are my heating requirements: 1200 sq ft of living space with average insulation (3 1/2" walls, 16" attic fiberglass insulation ) Must be able to heat without electricity, at times up to several days. Would like to be able to burn some wood spring and fall to take off the chill. Would like to have burn times as long (at least) as times between shakedowns (I gather from what I have read here that would typically be 12 hours).
I have a stainless steel double wall insulted Metal Vent stove pipe about 20 feet high from the stove up. I get a real good reliable draft from that with my woodstove. Price is less important than function and quality.

OK all you experienced coal burners, What do I need for a stove?

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Salemcoal
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Posts: 180
Joined: Mon. Jan. 14, 2008 8:22 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: 1960 efm 520
Stove/Furnace Model: Harman Mark II

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 11:40 am

Where are you located in Northern New York ? PM and I'll tell you about some stoves in the Glens Falls area.

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titleist1
Member
Posts: 4405
Joined: Wed. Nov. 14, 2007 4:06 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman Mag Stoker (old style) one in basement, one in workshop
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III on standby for long power outages
Coal Size/Type: Rice/Anthracite; Nut/Anthracite
Location: Cecil County, MD

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 12:46 pm

I've got a Mark III in our basement heating our 2000+ sq ft rancher without it integrated into the ductwork. I burn some wood in it early fall and late spring when I don't need the long burn of coal. As you probably know from using the wood stove the layout of the house will affect how well (or not) the stove heats it. Are you looking for it to heat the space via radiant heat or were you integrating it into duct work or water pipe heat?

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LsFarm
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Posts: 7384
Joined: Sun. Nov. 20, 2005 8:02 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland
Location: Michigan

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 1:47 pm

First products that come to mind are the Harman Mark I,II or III models, they can be run without the blower fan.. I would put one of the Hitzer hopper feed stoves in as my preference, I like hopper feed stoves.. Alaska makes a hopper type feed model, now called the Kodiak.. many older alaske kodiak stoves were electric powered stoker stoves... don't get them mixed up..

Take a look at the various internet sites, and ask questions.. lots of different stoves could work really well for you.

Greg L

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bono1979
New Member
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat. Dec. 29, 2007 4:41 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: kodiak
Location: hunlock creek

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 2:12 pm

I have the alaska kodiak heating my 1400sqft house with no insulation , its stays around 75 with no effort.I used about 4ton of coal this year.

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grizzly2
Member
Posts: 842
Joined: Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 7:18 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30 - 95
Coal Size/Type: pea and nut/ anthracite
Other Heating: Jotul #3 wood stove in garage. Oil backup in house. Electric backup in house.
Location: Whippleville, NY

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 3:09 pm

titleist1, I do have a good layout for heating my house with one stove located in my livingroom. I rebuilt a hundred year old cottage with space heating from the livingroom in mind.

Greg L, The Hitzer 30-95 hopper fed looks like it could be the right stove for me. Unfortunately, their website does not give a lot of detail. Do you or anyone else know the lowest BTU that can be run continuosly on that stove? Is consumption regulated by air vent, or by restricting the opening at the bottom of the hopper, or both? Any problems with coal jamming up where it comes down out of the hopper? Can the hopper be lifted out so wood can be burned in the stove?

bono1979, I checked out the Alaska Kodiak on their web site. 15-100K BTU looks like more than I need by quite a bit. My current Jotul 3 was 30K BTU with the cat. It is now Catless, putting out somewhat less heat than that. I could use probably 50K BTU in the sub 0 temps, but would like to be able to throttle back to as little as 5K BTU idealy.

Boy do I have a lot to learn about coal and coal stoves :?

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LsFarm
Member
Posts: 7384
Joined: Sun. Nov. 20, 2005 8:02 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland
Location: Michigan

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 3:18 pm

Hi grizzly, the Hitzer's heat output is regulated by the air inlet, the hopper is fixed, it is sort of like filling a five gallon bucket with the bottom cut out... fill it with coal, lift it say 2", some coal comes out, spreads out on the ground, as the coal burns, the level of the coal drops at the base of the 'bucket' [hopper] and the coal in the bucket slides down to keep the level at the bottom the same... If you shake the grates aggressivly you will drop more coal faster..

I'm not sure if the 30-95 is the stove with the removable hopper or if it is the other one... Give Hitzer a call, they are great folks, I've talked with them a few times, just asking questions,, they are very helpfull, then if you can find a dealer nearby you may be able to look at some of their stoves.. they are very well made.

I'm a big advocate of used stoves, keep an eye on 'papershop.com' and your local papers as well as Ebay for coal stoves... but ask here before you buy,, some are not worth owning, other brands and models are very sought after...

Greg L

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bksaun
Member
Posts: 967
Joined: Sat. Oct. 28, 2006 9:24 am
Stoker Coal Boiler: Hybrid, Gentleman Janitor GJ-6RSU/ EFM 700
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 503
Coal Size/Type: Pea Stoker/Bit, Pea or Nut Anthracite
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer/ EFM-Gentleman Janitor
Stove/Furnace Model: 503 Insert/ 700/GJ-62
Location: Hustonville, Ky

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 3:43 pm

The 30-95 hopper is removeable the larger 50-93 hopper is not removable,

I spent a few hours at there factory looking at an insert, unfortunatly it would not fit, but these are great stoves the 30-95 is the same size as their batch fed 254, it has no hopper.

BK

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CapeCoaler
Member
Posts: 4469
Joined: Sun. Feb. 10, 2008 3:48 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: want AA130
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine BS#4, Harman MKII, Hitzer 503,...
Coal Size/Type: Pea/Nut/Stove
Location: Cape Cod, MA

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 4:33 pm

As a former woodburner with a similarly sized uninsulated 'Summer House' I love my Mark II. It holds 40# nut and runs 12-18 hours without any fussing. I had a 1980 VC Vigilant wood burner and it needed to be fed every 3-6 hours when it gets cold. Now cold here is 15, so your better insulated house should have equilivant heat loss with your colder temps. The Vigilant is rated for 45,000 BTU/Hr, would keep the house at 66 when it was 15 outside and had to be fed every 3 hours with good Hickory dry splits. The Mark II rated for 72,000 BTU/Hr, keeps the same house at 75 when it was 15 outside, was fed/shaken down after 20 hours and is only cracked 3/4 turn.
I have the Mark II because it was only $500, very lightly used, came with some coal and I was in the right place at the right time.
Power outages are not an issue here but a UPS will be built to give me 24 hours fan time as the fan is really necessary. With enough batteries you could power the fan for 2 weeks.
If I were to buy new or came across a used one, the Hitzer 50-93 would be my choice because of the hopper, front loading Mark II is a minor PIA.
Stick with coal and use the windows to moderate the temps in the spring and fall, you will not miss sweeping creosote.
Coal is not as quick to start as wood but, thanks to this forum, was painless and only took 30 minutes to produce good heat and has yet to go out.

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grizzly2
Member
Posts: 842
Joined: Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 7:18 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30 - 95
Coal Size/Type: pea and nut/ anthracite
Other Heating: Jotul #3 wood stove in garage. Oil backup in house. Electric backup in house.
Location: Whippleville, NY

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 6:18 pm

Man, this info is great. In one day you all have taught me so much.

Since I do not want to rely on any electricity, it sounds like a Hitzer stove or the Harman TLC 2000 fit that criteria. Since I want a long burn time, and still want to be able to burn wood occationaly, the Hitzer 30-95 or the Harman TLC 2000 should meet all of my criteria.

Besides wanting to burn wood intermittently durring cool weather, I also get the opportunity to get some free wood fairly frequently (my mottos: "Have chainsaw will travel" and "Free is Good").

One deciding factor may be which one I can find in good used condition first. Also I have no idea what either stove costs new. Does anyone know the current prices :?:

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Devil505
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Posts: 7110
Joined: Tue. Jul. 03, 2007 10:44 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000
Location: SE Massachusetts

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 6:57 pm

grizzly2 wrote:Man, this info is great. In one day you all have taught me so much.

Since I do not want to rely on any electricity, it sounds like a Hitzer stove or the Harman TLC 2000 fit that criteria. Since I want a long burn time, and still want to be able to burn wood occationaly, the Hitzer 30-95 or the Harman TLC 2000 should meet all of my criteria.

Besides wanting to burn wood intermittently durring cool weather, I also get the opportunity to get some free wood fairly frequently (my mottos: "Have chainsaw will travel" and "Free is Good").

One deciding factor may be which one I can find in good used condition first. Also I have no idea what either stove costs new. Does anyone know the current prices :?:
Sorry but I don't know the current price but the other question is, where are you going to put this stove? In my case, it's the focal point of my basement family room & looks was important. If it is going to be in an often used room, you don't want to have to constantly look at an eye-sore. I like the looks of the TLC-2000 as well as how it operates.

CapeCoaler
Member
Posts: 4469
Joined: Sun. Feb. 10, 2008 3:48 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: want AA130
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine BS#4, Harman MKII, Hitzer 503,...
Coal Size/Type: Pea/Nut/Stove
Location: Cape Cod, MA

Post Sat. Feb. 16, 2008 7:30 pm

The new retail Mark II $1280 to 1800. Hitzer should be in a similar range.
You could swap out your wood burner spring/fall.
The Hitzer 30-95 will burn both wood and coal due to the removable hopper but holds less coal, so only 60% capacity of the 50-93 and shorter burn times.
I too have/had the "free wood" notion. It takes me about 3 hours to prep a full cord of the free wood, good wood from a friends farm in NH, to 18" splits. 4-5 cords stacked, covered and another hour restacked to full dried. Just based on labor alone, it is cheaper for me to burn nut coal at $250/ton than to process free wood. I used the converters to figure my cost per MBTU factoring in the efficiency of each appliance. The wood cost is $125/cord at $250/ton coal. I bill more than $45/hr for my work so I burn coal rather than wood. I still get the free wood, though I trade it to people who burn wood and we both get a great deal in the process. They charge $285-350/cord for cut/split/delivered/"seasoned" wood here and log length is $100/cord green.
Once you factor in the time to deal with a wood stove verses a coal stove it is no contest.
Longer, steadier burn.
Coal is ready to burn.
You can burn wet coal.
Twice a day fussing.
If you run out of your bulk coal you can buy a few bags at a slight premium from most hardware stores.
Different sizes for different burn rates.
Used Mark II sell from $500-900 on craigslist.
Try a good used coal stove to see if you like it. Then you can commit the big bucks for a new 'Ideal' coal stove with a bit more experience.

'

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EasyRay
Member
Posts: 468
Joined: Thu. Nov. 16, 2006 8:44 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman TLC 2000
Coal Size/Type: Pea,Nut or Stove
Location: Central Connecticut

Post Sun. Feb. 17, 2008 10:31 am

I paid $1575 two years ago for the Harman TLC-2000. My wife wanted something easier on the eyes than my old Temp Coal Two we had used since the Seventy's.

If you buy a TLC-2000 spend the extra $150 or what ever it was for the variable speed blower, you won't regret it. On warm days no blower and on cold days use the blower and not crank up the heat as much. On real cold days you can crank both up. On real cold days I never have to use the fan above about half speed. Another plus is when running the fan on low or slightly higher you can't even hear the fan. It will move 135 CFM at max speed.

Good luck... Your going to enjoy burning coal.

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Devil505
Member
Posts: 7110
Joined: Tue. Jul. 03, 2007 10:44 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000
Location: SE Massachusetts

Post Sun. Feb. 17, 2008 12:33 pm

EasyRay wrote:I paid $1575 two years ago for the Harman TLC-2000. My wife wanted something easier on the eyes than my old Temp Coal Two we had used since the Seventy's.

If you buy a TLC-2000 spend the extra $150 or what ever it was for the variable speed blower, you won't regret it. On warm days no blower and on cold days use the blower and not crank up the heat as much. On real cold days you can crank both up. On real cold days I never have to use the fan above about half speed. Another plus is when running the fan on low or slightly higher you can't even hear the fan. It will move 135 CFM at max speed.

Good luck... Your going to enjoy burning coal.
I bought this fan
**Broken Link(s) Removed**
& conne cted it up with a few fittings for very little money. It is very quiet, 3 speed & sits on the floor behind the stove. If it goes, I'm only out less than $30.00

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grizzly2
Member
Posts: 842
Joined: Tue. Feb. 12, 2008 7:18 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 30 - 95
Coal Size/Type: pea and nut/ anthracite
Other Heating: Jotul #3 wood stove in garage. Oil backup in house. Electric backup in house.
Location: Whippleville, NY

Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 6:51 pm

Right now if I had to buy new I am leaning strongly toward Harman Mark I , Mark11 or TLC2000, or a Hitzer 30-95. I still want to learn much more while I am watching the used stove market. Based on what I have learned so far it sounds like the TLC 2000 meets my needs and preferences almost exactly. :)

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