Not Enough Heat...

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.
4570FAN
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Posts: 23
Joined: Mon. Feb. 04, 2008 4:26 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: MkIII
Location: Richburg, NY

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:10 am

I started burning coal in my Harman Mk III about a month ago. I started out using nut coal. I didn't have any trouble getting a fire started or maintaining it (thanks to this forum). But I wasn't happy with the heat output compared to what I had been getting with wood. I was happy with the length of time between "messing" with it. I had only bought 10 bags of nut coal. When this was gone I burnt another face cord of firewood. Then I bought 10 bags of stove coal. I have been happier with the stove coal, but I still like wood better. I am using a baro set at .06" vented into an interior masonry chimney. The stove is in my basement and I'm heating 1,200 sq.ft. Airflow is not the issue, because I get good results with wood. I am able to get wood for $55 a facecord already split. At this point, COAL SUCKS. Unless I can figure out my problem, I'm going back to wood. Any suggestions?

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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 Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:14 am

If the heat output started out fine but has gotten much worse (over time), I think your problem is too much ash in your stove.
Try this thread: More of a Mid-Winter Cleanout Than A Shake Down
War is a game that is played with a smile. If you can't smile, grin. If you can't grin, keep out of the way till you can.
Winston Churchill
Shaking & Poking The TLC2000 Video

4570FAN
Member
Posts: 23
Joined: Mon. Feb. 04, 2008 4:26 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: MkIII
Location: Richburg, NY

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:16 am

It really hasn't been satisfactory since the beginning. Everywhere I've read that coal produces twice as much heat as wood. I would like to know who came up with that idea. :roll:

4570FAN
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Posts: 23
Joined: Mon. Feb. 04, 2008 4:26 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: MkIII
Location: Richburg, NY

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:21 am

I've not had a problem with losing the fire, and I shake my grates atleast twice a day. When I shake, I also poke up from underneath until there is an orange glow throughout the entire ashpan. I discovered right away that shaking until a few coals drop is NOT enough. I forgot to mention that I'm using Blaschak coal, not some unknown garbage.

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av8r
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Posts: 1163
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Leisure Line Hearth with twin turbos (sounds like it)
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Hearth model with twin turbos
Location: Near Owego, NY

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:27 am

4570FAN wrote:I've not had a problem with losing the fire, and I shake my grates atleast twice a day. When I shake, I also poke up from underneath until there is an orange glow throughout the entire ashpan. I discovered right away that shaking until a few coals drop is NOT enough. I forgot to mention that I'm using Blaschak coal, not some unknown garbage.
Some think Blaschak is the lower end of the coal quality spectrum.
"Fools you are. To say you learn by your experience. I prefer to profit by others' mistakes and avoid the price of my own."

- Otto von Bismarck

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SMITTY
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Posts: 11915
Joined: Sun. Dec. 11, 2005 12:43 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Patriot Coal - (custom built by Jim Dorsey, Taunton MA - RIP 4/18/13)
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III (SOLD!)
Coal Size/Type: Rice / Blaschak anthracite
Other Heating: Oil fired Burnham boiler
Location: West-Central Mass

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:38 am

My father started off burning Blaschak in his Mark I, & when he switched to Kimmel's , he said there was a dramatic heat increase. Could be the coal, or you might need to crank the damper open more. Get that pipe up around 250* - 300* & it should cook you out. ;)
The laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are
neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. ...Such laws make things worse
for the assaulted and better for the assailants, they serve rather to
encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with
greater confidence than an armed man."

- Thomas Jefferson, quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria in "On
Crimes and Punishment."

CapeCoaler
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Posts: 4429
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 Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:42 am

The MarkIII will heat that space with coal no problem.
Usually a lack of heat with a 'good burn' means too much draft.
You are filling to the top of the bricks, yes?
Body of the stove 300-450*?
Have you verified the draft with a manometer or are you just using the marks on the barometric damper?
No creosote on the barometric damper?
Pictures of the setup will do wonders for finding a cure to the problem.
Blaschak is consistent and is a good benchmark to eliminate variables when there is an issue.
There are different coals that may burn better for your conditions but Blaschak seems to be one of the better bagged coals.
I am not an engineer, train or otherwise!
I stay at a Holiday Inn at least once a year!
Most of all I do have common sense and a practical application of logic.
Oh, add humor, on the dry side, along with a wee bit 'o sarcasm.

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

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:45 am

4570FAN wrote:It really hasn't been satisfactory since the beginning. Everywhere I've read that coal produces twice as much heat as wood. I would like to know who came up with that idea. :roll:
If your draft is ok, your house is not too air-tight for enough combustion air & you are filling your stove up to the tops of the firebricks then I can't imagine how your stove could not be putting out a good amount of heat, even when first lit???
War is a game that is played with a smile. If you can't smile, grin. If you can't grin, keep out of the way till you can.
Winston Churchill
Shaking & Poking The TLC2000 Video

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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 Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 11:49 am

4570FAN wrote:Airflow is not the issue, because I get good results with wood.
In actuality, coal needs much more air than wood to burn well. Try opening a window in the stove area to see if that helps.
War is a game that is played with a smile. If you can't smile, grin. If you can't grin, keep out of the way till you can.
Winston Churchill
Shaking & Poking The TLC2000 Video

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rockwood
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Stokermatic coal furnace
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Rockwood Stoveworks Circulator
Baseburners & Antiques: Malleable/Monarch Range
Coal Size/Type: Soft coal: Lump and stoker (slack coal)
Location: Utah

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 12:12 pm

How long is the burn time? After you load it up, how long before you add more coal? Do you have a magnetic thermometer so you can tell us how hot the stove pipe is (before the baro damper) at mid burn cycle?
"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free." -Goethe

4570FAN
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Posts: 23
Joined: Mon. Feb. 04, 2008 4:26 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: MkIII
Location: Richburg, NY

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 12:20 pm

My house is about as airtight as a sock! :P Actually though Devil505, I was referring to heat distribution. My baro has been verified with a monometer. I'm sorry, but I am unable to provide any pictures. There is a 90 coming off the back of the stove with it's outlet at a 45 deg angle from verticle. Then there is 24" of pipe to my tee with the baro. The tee is connected to a 45 into the chimney. I am currently running the draft spinner at 3 turns open. I have a pretty good fire going now. The flue gas temp is 225 after the baro. I am going to try turning down the fan that is sucking air out of the basement. Maybe I am causing "negative" pressure down there. Thanks for all the ideas though guys.

BeerMonley
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Posts: 215
Joined: Mon. Aug. 11, 2008 8:39 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Lesiure Line
Coal Size/Type: rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Lesiure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono
Location: Lake Winola PA

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 12:30 pm

maybe it is the coal? im new to coal also and the last load of coal I got was different than my regualr stuff and it burns at a lower temp, my new coal burns with a yellow flame the old stuff I had burned with a blue flame. I also have a mark III and it keeps my house toasty, I have no baro and run the ash door vent 1 turn open when im at work and about 1 1/2 to 2 turns when I want to warm things up

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SMITTY
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Posts: 11915
Joined: Sun. Dec. 11, 2005 12:43 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Patriot Coal - (custom built by Jim Dorsey, Taunton MA - RIP 4/18/13)
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III (SOLD!)
Coal Size/Type: Rice / Blaschak anthracite
Other Heating: Oil fired Burnham boiler
Location: West-Central Mass

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 12:30 pm

3 turns out is quite a bit! Especially if your chimney is pulling a .05 or more. My chimney averages about a .05 & on warmer days I run the stove at 1.25 - 1.5 turns out. Today is in the 20's outside (teens this morning) & I have it at 2 turns. In the single digits, I had it at 2.25 .

You need a stack temp. to determine if that setting is too much. If it's burning too hot, most of the heat will go up the chimney & rapid ash buildup on the grates will choke the fire way down. In that situation, not much heat makes it into the house.

EDIT: just re-read your post. 225* AFTER the baro is very hot..... this may be the problem
The laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are
neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. ...Such laws make things worse
for the assaulted and better for the assailants, they serve rather to
encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with
greater confidence than an armed man."

- Thomas Jefferson, quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria in "On
Crimes and Punishment."

CapeCoaler
Member
Posts: 4429
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 Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 12:46 pm

Too much air sucks the heat up the chimney, typical word burner mistake.
Cut the spinner to 1.5 turns and you should start making heat.
I am not an engineer, train or otherwise!
I stay at a Holiday Inn at least once a year!
Most of all I do have common sense and a practical application of logic.
Oh, add humor, on the dry side, along with a wee bit 'o sarcasm.

Paulie
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Posts: 834
Joined: Tue. Apr. 08, 2008 8:44 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer
Location: MA, South Shore

Post Sun. Jan. 04, 2009 12:53 pm

.06 seems high on the baro. Most people here use .04 as a base line. I shoot for between .02 and .03 as my chimney will
suck the chrome off a bumper.

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