Harmon ST8-VF8

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Duengeon master
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Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harmon Mark III
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite pea and nut mix. Bituminous lump
Location: Penndel, Pa.

Post Wed. Jul. 14, 2010 4:49 pm

I just became the proud owner of Harmon's predecessor to the Magnum. A ST8-VF8 made in Aug. 1986. I have just joined the ranks of the girlie men. :shh: Chris DVC500atlast informed me of it. So we went out to State College to get it. Thank you Chris. The stove needed a new grate and hopper, and some new gaskets, other than that the stove is in excellent condition for it's age. Today I called my local Harman dealer and much to my surprise the stove is so old that I need a retro kit for it. :o The kit is about $600.00+ A new grate, pusher bar assembly Gaskets and a ton of more stuff. A $500.00 stove may end up costing me over $1100.00 :( I need some help from some of you professionals. P.S. I may be selling my .357 and my Harman mark III to buy parts. I hope not.


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009to090
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Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520 HighBoy
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: DVC-500 x 2
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Rice
Location: Warrenton, NC

Post Wed. Jul. 14, 2010 7:18 pm

Ouch! $600 retro kit???? Nothing wrong with the old pusher-bar. Bring the grate over and we'll weld it.
Pictures!! We like Pictures!! :D

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2001Sierra
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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 Wed. Jul. 14, 2010 9:59 pm

Harmon got bought out. And you did too! If the original design was good why did things change? . It sad to say some manufacturers think we will vanish and not need old parts on completely good units. There are many good units that are used by generations.

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Horace
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman ST8-VF8 / Frankenstove
Location: Central PA

Post Thu. Jul. 22, 2010 12:04 am

I have one of these stoves. It's fantastic, though there are a few idiosyncrasies to running it. More specifically (and importantly) is that the path that the exhaust follows at the top of the stove is flat. On the Magnums, this section is peaked like the roof of a house. The flyash on the Magnums falls into the stove so you can clean it out. On our stoves, it settles onto the flat part and builds up. It will build up to the point where it blocks the exhaust coming out of the stove. Then CO will leak out of the stove everywhere it can - imagine stuffing a shirt into the stovepipe and you'll get the idea. I found this out the hard way and spent 24 hours in the hospital sucking pure oxygen.

Now that I've scared the hell out of you, you just need to clean it out several times per season. I usually do so around Christmas time, in March, and at the end of the season. I cut the handle off an old canister vac so I can snake the hose all around in there. Takes about five minutes, and I don't even shut the stove the whole way down.

Does it absolutely need everything in the retro kit? My grate has been cracked for about fifteen years and I've not had a problem with it. As far as I can tell, the pusher rod assembly is pretty simple.

Do you have the manual for it? If not, I can probably scan mine.

One of the other features of the Magnum that we didn't get is the hot air take-off collar. After seeing some pictures of other users' stoves, I came up with an ugly solution: It's Ugly, but It Works

If you have any questions on your stove, need the manual, want pictures, or if I didn't explain the flat-section-flyash-kill-you part accurately, please let me know and I'll help any way I can.

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009to090
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Joined: Fri. Jan. 30, 2009 10:02 am
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520 HighBoy
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: DVC-500 x 2
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Rice
Location: Warrenton, NC

Post Thu. Jul. 22, 2010 9:01 am

Horace wrote: Do you have the manual for it? If not, I can probably scan mine.
Hi Horace, I know Rich has been looking for a manual for this stove, so if you can scan it for him that would be grate ;)

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Horace
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman ST8-VF8 / Frankenstove
Location: Central PA

Post Thu. Jul. 22, 2010 12:44 pm

No problem.

Minus 50 points for the pun, Chris :P

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McGiever
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Stoker Coal Boiler: AXEMAN-ANDERSON 130 "1959"
Coal Size/Type: PEA / ANTHRACITE
Other Heating: Ground Source Heat Pump
Stove/Furnace Make: Hydro Heat /Mega Tek
Location: Junction of PA-OH-WV

Post Tue. Feb. 15, 2011 2:46 pm

Came across one of these recently, but it is built exactly like a Magnum.

Serial # 000805 Haven't figured out what year it was made. :?:

Has pent (roof like) heat exchanger and split grate. Even has one piece glass in door...not the three piece.
Perhaps it was retrofitted w/ the newer Verti-Flow assembly (assembly stamped "VF9 231")...but how did it get the pent H/X in there? :!: :idea:
Verti-Flow assembly and hopper look to be a very low mileage units.

BTW: Got it and 1/2 ton of coal all for $200.00
Needs new ash pan and repairs to ash pan door...paint too.

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LsFarm
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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 Tue. Feb. 15, 2011 3:53 pm

Horace: I hope you now have several CO detectors around the house !!

Greg L


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Horace
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman ST8-VF8 / Frankenstove
Location: Central PA

Post Tue. Feb. 15, 2011 9:49 pm

LsFarm wrote:Horace: I hope you now have several CO detectors around the house !!

Greg L
Oodles of them. And a parakeet next to the stove. (No, I'm just kidding :D) And a recurring, 60 day appointment in all of my calendars (phone, computer, real calendar) reminding me to clean it. Just did so over the weekend, and it was pretty close to closed up. Probably could have lasted another couple weeks at best. :shock: Scary, scary stuff, but the thing heats like crazy.

smitty01
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Stove/Furnace Make: harman
Stove/Furnace Model: st8-vf8

Post Thu. Jan. 12, 2012 8:20 am

i need a manual for this stove. after reading the CO horror stories I may just stick with kodiak woodstove

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Rob R.
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Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy
Location: Chazy, NY

Post Thu. Jan. 12, 2012 8:23 am

Personally I think vacuuming the stove out 2-3 times per season is easier than brushing creosote out of the chimney...with a little bit of maintenance and some common sense you will do fine.

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LsFarm
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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 Thu. Jan. 12, 2012 10:43 am

Carbon Monoxide poisoning can come from a wood stove as well as a coal stove, or even a gas oven or range..

All appliances that burn fuel in the same space that you breath in must be properly vented to the outdoors, and must be maintained
properly and regularly..

Coal stoves tend to lead us to be complacent, because they burn with so little help or attention needed..
But, just like a woodstove needing the chimney swept often to prevent chimney fires, the coal stoves need
flyash vacuumed out of the heat exchangers and out of the flue pipes and elbows..

Greg L

smitty01
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Stove/Furnace Make: harman
Stove/Furnace Model: st8-vf8

Post Thu. Jan. 12, 2012 11:24 am

thanks for input. would like to get this stove up and running, but only documentation I can find is for the newer style magnums. may set up in garage till I get the hang of running this thing. any help would be appreciated thanks . been burning wood in an old kodiak stove from the 70's doesnt need electricity to run and never set CO detector off in 14 yrs of woodburning. no moving parts either but alot of work in wood processing . I got the Harman cheap enough so I thought i'd give coal a try

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Horace
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman ST8-VF8 / Frankenstove
Location: Central PA

Post Thu. Jan. 12, 2012 1:56 pm

smitty01 wrote:i need a manual for this stove. after reading the CO horror stories I may just stick with kodiak woodstove
Check your PMs.

After the initial little screw-up :) the stove has run fine for the past ten years. I didn't mean to scare anyone OUT of using the stove, just INTO maintaining it properly, if you see the difference. One of the reasons that I won't burn wood is because I am afraid of creosote and chimney fires. As a woodburner, you know the exact things to do to prevent them. This is the opposite side of the same coin. I, and everyone else here, am happy to lend whatever assistance I can. It's a great stove - fire it up!

smitty01
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Joined: Wed. Jan. 11, 2012 3:25 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: harman
Stove/Furnace Model: st8-vf8

Post Thu. Jan. 12, 2012 2:22 pm

thanks horace, my in laws had the newer magnum this ones just a little different. stove was in peices when I got it all together now but I have 2 steel plates 4" x 16" not sure where they go?


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