Would You Be Burning Coal If Not for This Site?

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Would you be burning coal if not for this site?

I was already burning coal.
I knew of it and my research led me here.
Never knew about coal until I came across this site.
Total votes: 148

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Posts: 4851
Joined: Sat. Mar. 12, 2011 2:04 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: VanWert VA 400
Coal Size/Type: Buck/Anthracite
Location: Colley,Pennsylvania

Post Sun. Jul. 13, 2014 9:42 pm

I used to work with a past-semi current forum member, who seemed to get off talking about coal. Another co-worker had a mark 3 he wanted to get rid of for various reasons and figured what the heck I'll giver a shot. Hell with new house burning well over 300 gal of fuel oil from march to end of April I wasnt playin that game. The summer before I lit my first coal fire I found this site and wow did it save me from some of the problems I could have incurred. I don't think I even knew what the heck a barometric damper was. 3 years later... I have an awesome rebuilt VanWert boiler (from a current forum member) sittin on a newly poured throne with a very efficient bran new primary/secondary setup with all associated heating equipment ready for its first fire. Been quite a nice ride with all you folks.

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Site Moderator
Posts: 9822
Joined: Fri. Oct. 27, 2006 2:05 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea
Location: Guilford, Connecticut

Post Sun. Jul. 13, 2014 10:17 pm

I burned coal in 1980 in an old Sears cast iron furnace from around 1910-20. It was beast and and I did have a little grief but it was pretty forgiving. When I bought this house the oil was killing me and I purchased a wood/coal hand fired boiler. The V shaped firebox was giving me fits when I switched to coal from wood. Started seaching for tips and bingo! This gold mine appeared. :)
Nothing is impossible for people who don't have to do it themselves.

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Posts: 1844
Joined: Wed. May. 20, 2009 8:09 am
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Keystoker 90 Chimney vent
Coal Size/Type: Rice
Other Heating: Buderus Oil Boiler 3115-34
Stove/Furnace Model: Keystoker 90 Chimney Vent
Location: Wynantskill NY, 10 miles from Albany

Post Sun. Jul. 13, 2014 10:18 pm

Found this site just after buying Keystoker 90. Had a Buderus hopper fed for 28 years. Struggled on my own :mad: Learned things that may have helped others on this site :D I feel I have contributed to others and that is a nice feeling :D
Keep up the good work fellow members!

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Posts: 171
Joined: Tue. Jul. 06, 2010 10:58 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Alaska Kodiak
Coal Size/Type: Harmony Nut, Lehigh Nut
Other Heating: Happy thoughts, good wool and a little propane.
Location: Wild Wonderful WV

Post Sun. Jul. 13, 2014 10:42 pm

I grew up in a part of the country that did not burn coal much if any and even though I knew about it had never seen it done.

As poor students the wife and I had heated with a number of things, but generally lived in a cool/cold house until we where gifted a wood stove.

We burned wood for over a dozen years and in 3 different houses as we worked our way through school. A buddy who is a tree surgeon kept us in fire wood during our time in TN which was the first time we had a warm house during the winter, but there was lots of stove tending and the house would be cold after a long day for us to come home to, but at least we could make it warm while we where home.

I ran into this forum after moving to WV and read it off and on for several years. I had trouble believing what I was reading, but decided to jump on board and switched to coal 4 winters ago.

It was without a doubt the best home heating decision I have ever made. In fact I gave away a bunch of seasoned firewood to a friend in need and have only burned wood in the backyard fire pit since.

So without a doubt I would not be burning coal if it where not for this forum where I have learned so much.

The wife became a convert within the first week of coal burning and was even the one suggesting another truck load of coal this summer instead of next since the pile represents warm winters to come to her.

Apparently spending many hours wrapped in blankets and your warmest coat while studying for midterms or finals warps a person for life, but it is a kind of warped I can live with.


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Posts: 3979
Joined: Sat. Nov. 22, 2008 10:42 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vigilant 2310, gold marc box stove, vogelzang pot belly coat rack
Baseburners & Antiques: Home Sparkle 12
Coal Size/Type: Coal Contractor's stove, a little Kimmels 'nut
Other Heating: Very cold FHA oil furnace
Location: millinocket,me.

Post Sun. Jul. 13, 2014 11:33 pm

Four yrs ago a former boss would boast how warm his home was with his coal boiler and heating oil was well over 4 dollars a gallon and killing me in northern Maine. A stove dealer's web site linked me here and the journey began. I can't say anything new about this site that hasn't been said or thought. Thank you Richard, truly amazing what happens here. :notworthy:
never yell through a screen...you'll strain your voice.

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Posts: 310
Joined: Sat. Jan. 26, 2008 10:02 am
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Coal Size/Type: Rice/Anthracite
Stove/Furnace Make: efm
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520
Location: Indiana, PA

Post Mon. Jul. 14, 2014 5:00 am

Was already burning coal but wanted to share thoughts and ideas with others who do the same.

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Posts: 617
Joined: Thu. May. 01, 2008 7:12 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 608 Energy Master I Stoker
Location: Nottingham,Pa

Post Mon. Jul. 14, 2014 5:47 am

The original search that brought me to this site was one for a alternative for the thousands of dollars spent on oil to heat a 200 year old house. Solved that problem and sold the house. Then bought a ranch home that had a heat pump. Again the search for affordable heat brought me here. Wouldn't have found out about the burning black rocks with out this site. Our Hitzer stoker stove has done the task of heating our home for the past 4 years. Wife still claims the beat idea I have ever had next to marrying her. Thanks Richard! :D

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Posts: 400
Joined: Mon. Feb. 02, 2009 3:47 pm
Baseburners & Antiques: 1912 Smith & Anthony Hub Heater #215
Stove/Furnace Make: Smith & Anthony Co.
Stove/Furnace Model: #215 Hub Heater
Location: Pittsburgh Pa

Post Mon. Jul. 14, 2014 9:37 am

I would be burning coal, but not in as classy of manner! I didn't know about the old parlor stoves before this site. I would probably have ended up with a new wood/coal burner that looked like a square box.

Doing my homework on what is the best furnace to buy, I found this site and opened my eyes to the world of Anthracite too. Heard of it, but I'm in Bit country.

I still want to find an old stove, Germer or Florence hotblast or similar so I can burn the local Bit coal. Haven't come across the right deal yet.

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Posts: 6603
Joined: Fri. Apr. 11, 2008 2:54 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined
Location: Orrington, Maine

Post Mon. Jul. 14, 2014 12:00 pm

When the price of oil hit the fan around 2008 I flat refused to pay $5,000 a year to heat this house....and if oil got to $5 a gallon that's what we were looking at. Wood? We had been there, done that, didn't want to do it again. Coal? When I was 10 years olda friend of my father burned coal. I saw his automatic coal boiler and never forgot. It was the ONLY coal burning device I ever saw. But, seeing it led me down the road to this site and to an Axeman Anderson.
Orrington, Maine

"If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all".

Dave 1234
Posts: 189
Joined: Tue. Nov. 13, 2012 9:05 am
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1948 International boiler, EFM S-20 stoker
Coal Size/Type: Buck,
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: 520

Post Mon. Jul. 14, 2014 6:18 pm

We burned wood for 30 yrs. When my son joined the Marines the time lapse from loading to loading of the stove made the house always cold.
After finding this site, and all you great folks to coach me along, I went for it !
I'm on yr. 2 with a boiler and its great !

Many Thanks to all !!!

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Posts: 1457
Joined: Sat. Dec. 18, 2010 12:02 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Leisure Line Lil' Heater.
Other Heating: Oil Furnace and Kerosene Heaters.
Location: Connecticut

Post Tue. Jul. 15, 2014 9:56 am

I have never bought anything impulsively and I was researching which brand of wood stove was the best. My research about wood stoves led me to a site that compared wood to coal which then led me to this great website.

Inflation is the Grim Reaper to prosperity.
Printing money without a gold standard is the crime of counterfeiting.
The bitterness of poor quality lingers long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.
Mr. McGee, don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry.
Si vis paceum, parabellum.

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Posts: 3080
Joined: Sat. Feb. 20, 2010 3:32 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Stuart,Peterson/ Grander
Stove/Furnace Model: Sunnyside/ Golden Bride
Location: Qc Canada

Post Tue. Jul. 15, 2014 11:12 am

After years of reading the forum and all I can read about coal/anth burning, I got the Vigll after got the antique stoves.
Never think about coming back to wood.
Thanks to all members for the help.

User avatar
Posts: 3895
Joined: Sat. Dec. 20, 2008 8:33 am
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Mark II & Mark I
Coal Size/Type: nut/pea
Location: Springfield, VA

Post Tue. Jul. 15, 2014 6:47 pm

I was looking for a supplemental heating appliance for our house; something to take the edge off the heating bill. My dad burned wood my whole life so I knew the ins and outs of that and hoped that something better was out there. The internet came up with coal. I was intrigued and everything fell into place. I found a Mark II in a store, on sale no less, down the road in Manassas and brought it on sight. It sat in my family room for 8 months while I figured out what to do with it.

I didn’t have a clue about burning coal but stumbled through my first winter. Amazingly, what started out as a supplemental heating appliance turned into a whole house heat source. Burning wood never did that. I found the Forum the fall of my second year and reduced my coal usage and cost while being able to control the fire so we weren’t chased out of the house. I was sold; it took a couple more seasons for DK to come around but he’s a believer now.

Thanks to the Forum for teaching me how to burn coal. I can’t say enough good things about the Folks here. Lisa
“The media class is the wall that we have to climb over for our voices to be heard. Once our voices are heard, then democracy will happen.” Andrew Breitbart.

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Posts: 1029
Joined: Tue. Dec. 13, 2011 4:57 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Chubby Coal Stove
Baseburners & Antiques: Our Glenwood 109
Coal Size/Type: Nut Anthracite
Location: Long Island, New York

Post Tue. Jul. 15, 2014 7:17 pm

There was a Coal Chubby stove and a pile of stacked firewood in the backyard when we bought our house. I played around with wood fires in it for several weeks. Struggling to keep a fire going through the night I decided to try some coal in it, since the name of the stove was a Coal Chubby! I was amazed at the heat output and long burn times the coal provided. My thirst for knowledge of my new found love drove me to this site. This is an amazing site with great people. So, yes I was burning coal before finding this site but I was a rookie. This site helped me out tremendously, thanks to all the good folks on here.

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Rich W.
Posts: 208
Joined: Tue. Nov. 26, 2013 10:29 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Castings Vigilant Multi-Fuel (coal for me); Vermont Castings Vigilant 2310 in the shop
Coal Size/Type: Nut
Other Heating: System 2000 Oil Burner; VC Resolute Woodstove (sold) Jotul 8 Woodstove (sold)
Location: Newport County, Rhode Island

Post Tue. Jul. 15, 2014 7:24 pm

Burned wood for 20 years, and wanted more BTU's and longer burn times. Found a multi fuel Vigilant, which offered me options. Tried coal; paid my frustration dues; found this site; cherished the advice; got the hang of it and never looked back! Only one season of warmth and savings, and wish I had switched decades ago! Thank you to this entire community!
Rich in RI

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