OUTDOOR Wood/Coal Furnaces...Seeking Advice Before We Buy??

A Coal stoker furnace or stove controls most operations including automatically feeding the coal. They are quite similar to any conventional oil and gas units and easily operated for extended periods of time. They commonly use rice coal but may use larger sizes like buckwheat. They can be used as primary heat, supplementary heat or have a dual set up with your existing oil/gas furnace.
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coalkirk
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Joined: Wed. May. 17, 2006 8:12 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1981 EFM DF520
Coal Size/Type: anthracite/rice coal
Location: Forest Hill MD

Post Tue. Jan. 13, 2009 8:54 am

sarge wrote:ls you were right my owb does not burn anthracite coal very good .I am in the heart of winter now and have burned wood to keep warm.I am looking at an alaskan combo stove it burns pellets or coal but the dealer wants 4400 dollars for it .I really want to get away from cutting wood and stoking that owb.I really wish I knew how much coal I would burn that would determine if I should buy the alaskan
If you want to burn coal, buy a boiler designed just for coal. I've never seen acombo unit that will burn anthracite coal well. Too many compromises. The AA unit Doug suggests is a heat machine.
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life. Winston Churchill

"I would rather have a German division in front of me than a French one behind me." —General George S. Patton

Burning rice coal in a 1981 EFM DF520, nut coal in a hand fired Jotul 507.


sarge
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Joined: Tue. Sep. 09, 2008 9:36 pm

Post Mon. Jan. 26, 2009 9:03 pm

L.S Do you know where I can locate a dealer to price one of the axeman andersons .Ireally want to burn this anthracite I am plain tired of wood just the other day I was cutting wood outside at 20 below zero .I am saying no more of this ,since I am set up for hotwater heat I am selling the owb to someone who likes that kind of stuff.I really think the axeman would be for me I thought about building my own but I have no plans to go by and probably would be further ahead just purchasing one .I live near st.paul but I am on wisconsin side so if you could recommend a dealer I would appreciate it.Someone mentioned to run the owb parrell with axeman but why monkey with two stoves I think one coal stove will heat me up just fine.this winter has been cold and I am sucking down wood fast ,it has not been above zero at night since x-mas and last night was 36 below .I have decided a pallet of coal looks nice this time of year instead of a dwindling wood pile.

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Berlin
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Posts: 1847
Joined: Thu. Feb. 09, 2006 1:25 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal
Location: Buffalo/Adirondacks, NY

Post Mon. Jan. 26, 2009 11:00 pm

you might want to take a look at firing a boiler with an underfed stoker from wil-burt. you are far away from anthracite country and very close to excellent illinois stoker bituminous coal. a bituminous stoker, properly setup, will burn the much less $$ coal pretty much smoke free and save you money over anthracite.
Burning western Pennsylvania Bituminous in WNY using model 77 stoker furnace. BITUMINOUS equiptment: 2 hand fired stoves of my own design, Many Combustioneer Model 77 stokers, stokermatic furnace, Many Will-Burt stokers, & and Two Iron firemen.

sarge
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Joined: Tue. Sep. 09, 2008 9:36 pm

Post Tue. Jan. 27, 2009 12:05 am

I am not familiar with wilburt and I am pretty green to coal burning .But I have been told bituminios coal is black and dirty,are you saying I can burn this coal cheaper without a lot of smoke ,and could I burn it in my owb.I tryed anthracite in my owb and it gets red and glows but does not seem to get my water hot and a lot of coal don't even burn .i just throw wood on top of it and eventually it burns or falls into ash area . I just gave up on trying to burn it in owb seems to be a waste.But if you have something you can recommend I am all for checking it out I am wanting to burn coal bad. I think people would catch on quick here.Right now if you tell someone in wisconsin your going to burn coal they think your crazy.People here are blind to the fact coal has come a long way for heating ,i see everyone out east is doing it

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Berlin
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Posts: 1847
Joined: Thu. Feb. 09, 2006 1:25 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal
Location: Buffalo/Adirondacks, NY

Post Tue. Jan. 27, 2009 2:11 pm

I'm not sure what you mean by black and dirty, all coal is "black and dirty" even anthracite if it's not washed well or it's shipped/handled a lot. bituminous coal is softer, and will get your hands dirtier from touching it than anthracite. Bituminous coal also has a high volitile content and if burned with little oxygen such as in a bulk-fed (hand-fired) appliance will produce smoke; the higher sulfur content together with the incomplete combustion of volitiles makes the smoke smell like fresh asphalt. This is why I suggested a stoker, an underfed stoker will burn the much less expensive and very high quality southern illinois stoker coal with almost no smoke and be much more convenient. I would not reccomnend loading your outdoor boiler with bit coal, it will simply smoulder much like the anthracite did, but with more smoke. All coal (with the possible exception of lignite) needs underfire air to burn properly.

wil-burt:
**Broken Link(s) Removed**
Burning western Pennsylvania Bituminous in WNY using model 77 stoker furnace. BITUMINOUS equiptment: 2 hand fired stoves of my own design, Many Combustioneer Model 77 stokers, stokermatic furnace, Many Will-Burt stokers, & and Two Iron firemen.

sarge
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Post Sat. Jan. 31, 2009 8:00 pm

berlin I got in touch with wilburt,unfortunately there quite a ways away but willing to work with me .Since I already have constructed my owb I may need to make revisions to adapt the underfed unit.seond off I need to find someone with the bit coal and price it in my area.Ireally which I could see a picture of an underfed boiler so I could get an idea of what to build.Being a certifed welder can save me lots of money but I need to know what I am building.I am so damn frustrated no one is into coal up here ,with our weather it would sure be a savings, everyone is going mad over owb now wood is hard to get for free anymore.loggers say there making more in firewood logs than saw logs.I can get the bagged anthracite up here but it is 350 dollars a ton.And as cold as we get it could get expensive even with that.most dealers here if any have one stoker stove on display.

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Berlin
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Joined: Thu. Feb. 09, 2006 1:25 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal
Location: Buffalo/Adirondacks, NY

Post Sun. Feb. 01, 2009 8:25 pm

this is what a stoker looks like in a boiler:

http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/publications/books/housin ... e12.07.jpg
http://homepage.ntlworld.com/howard.v.moore/boiler_house.htm

some info on where coal is mined in illinois (central and southern illinois coal is superior for stoker use, in general):
**Broken Link(s) Removed**These guys arn't too far away from you, brokers, and mining co's should be able to give you a rough idea of what it'll cost/ton based on current shipping and your desired coal (High vol, low ash, low FSI)

**Broken Link(s) Removed**
Burning western Pennsylvania Bituminous in WNY using model 77 stoker furnace. BITUMINOUS equiptment: 2 hand fired stoves of my own design, Many Combustioneer Model 77 stokers, stokermatic furnace, Many Will-Burt stokers, & and Two Iron firemen.

sarge
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Posts: 24
Joined: Tue. Sep. 09, 2008 9:36 pm

Post Mon. Feb. 02, 2009 7:15 pm

Thanks berlin the info was very helpful I may be able to use my existing boiler ,in the pic it does not show where the ash goes and another question is does bit coal last longer than anthracite.some of the forums on here show guys burning 35 lbs of coal on average per day.I guess I would like to get buy for under 1500 a year or I might as well buy oil.I am relly hoping this under fed with bit works out


sarge
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Post Tue. Feb. 10, 2009 7:56 pm

just got my quote from wilburt today and they want 4,500 dollars for the underfed stoker plus the mods on boiler so at this point it is getting costly not to mention the bit coal fro illinois is 8 hours away so trucking is a killer.I really had my heart sset on coal but no matter where I look it is just not cheap enough being that I am so far from the mines.But you know listening to the old guys around here all they talk about is burning coal in the old days .Iwonder how they got here in wisconsin they say you could buy it at any lumber yard ,now it is unheard of except in power plants in bulk by rail.so wood will have to do I hate it but the savings over gas and oil is what its all about .thanks guys this forum is great

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Berlin
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Posts: 1847
Joined: Thu. Feb. 09, 2006 1:25 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal
Location: Buffalo/Adirondacks, NY

Post Wed. Feb. 11, 2009 12:30 am

there is no reason why coal, with trucking, would cost you over 1/2 what you're paying for oil currently (around 1.95/gallon). yes the stoker and an initial truckload of coal is an investment, but it's one that will last a lifetime (the coal obviously won't, but the stoker and happiness you'll have from having a relatively automated, inexpensive, all-american form of heat that requires minimum labor will).
Burning western Pennsylvania Bituminous in WNY using model 77 stoker furnace. BITUMINOUS equiptment: 2 hand fired stoves of my own design, Many Combustioneer Model 77 stokers, stokermatic furnace, Many Will-Burt stokers, & and Two Iron firemen.

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DOUG
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Posts: 904
Joined: Wed. Jul. 09, 2008 8:49 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: CHUBBY, D.S.MACHINE BOILER
Stove/Furnace Model: CLAYTON 1600
Location: PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA

Post Wed. Feb. 11, 2009 12:26 pm

Berlin is right. I'd still give some serious thought about the coal idea you have. If I had an outdoor system such as yours, with the talent of making your own unit modifications you have, I'd bee looking into the parts of some of these soft coal stokers to see if it would be feasible for a homemade unit from the available parts. I'm sure you could fabricate something that works as good if not even better than what you can buy in completed form. Just a thought. :idea:

sarge
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Post Fri. Feb. 13, 2009 8:01 pm

I checked on illinois stoker coal and to have delivered would be 150 dollars a ton ten ton minium.I don't know how much I would burn a season I am guessing 5 ton .I called on no 2 heating oil today and it is 1.82 a gallon I burn about 1000 gallons a winter when I used to burn it so thats 1820 dollars a year at current price.It was over 3 dollars last winter.Bit stoker coal would run me 750 a year at 5 ton so I would save thousand dollars a winter not bad.I did find a guy in fairbault minnesota that purchased an aa130 direct from factory and bought a semi load of anthracite delivered at 275 dollars a ton says he loves it and averages about a bag of coal a day.He has invited me to see it the boiler ran him 6700 dollars he says it was money well spent.I am hopimg to see the design of the aa because I am sure I can build one with my asme certification .building the boiler is the easy part for me its th coal that is hard to get .why couldnt we have some damn coal mines here you guys are lucky

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DOUG
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Joined: Wed. Jul. 09, 2008 8:49 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: CHUBBY, D.S.MACHINE BOILER
Stove/Furnace Model: CLAYTON 1600
Location: PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA

Post Fri. Feb. 13, 2009 8:24 pm

Hey sarge, check out this post Greg, Lsfarm made. It may help. Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 260M Disection

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Berlin
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Posts: 1847
Joined: Thu. Feb. 09, 2006 1:25 pm
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal
Location: Buffalo/Adirondacks, NY

Post Sat. Feb. 14, 2009 12:29 am

unfortunately for you the AA won't burn bituminous and WHEN oil does go up again having a boiler designed to burn the fuel that's closest to you geographically is important, shipping anthracite from pa @ 4 or 5 $/gallon diesel will make heating with anthracite in northern illinois very expensive.

the stoker paying for itself in as little as five years (even sooner if oil goes up) for a lifetime of use is NOT a bad investment; and if you ever do find a cheaper, closer source of bit coal you can use it as well.
Burning western Pennsylvania Bituminous in WNY using model 77 stoker furnace. BITUMINOUS equiptment: 2 hand fired stoves of my own design, Many Combustioneer Model 77 stokers, stokermatic furnace, Many Will-Burt stokers, & and Two Iron firemen.

sarge
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Posts: 24
Joined: Tue. Sep. 09, 2008 9:36 pm

Post Sat. Feb. 14, 2009 4:18 pm

BERLIN I am with you 100 percent on the bit anthracite is spendy here thats why most guys buy a semi load at a time .the cost of the stoker is not the problem I just want to make 100 percent sure this will work before I go all out.I do live in a small uncorparated town so I do not want to get neighbors excited with black smoke.Some of the old guys say when they used to clean stack at the creamery in town back in the 40s the women would get mad because of the black soot on the clothes hanging outside.Of course the creamery does not operate here anymore ,so I am posting some pics of my outdoor boiler for you to review along with my thermo syphoning sidewinder I built for my hot water .Right now I have a car radiator for a heat exchanger in plenum above the oil furnace.I want you to look at my boiler and see what changes I would have to make to insert stoker .I know I will need to fab shaker grates thats not a problem them grates in there now are schedule 40 stainless pipe spaced one half inch apart this grate just sets on angle iron up center of boiler.the air is coming in underneath directly through the ash door .There is to ash pan I just pull ashes out with hoe and have pan I slide under door.This boiler was fabed from a lp tank the jacket is from a 1000 gallon tank cut in half . 1/2in thick steel the firebox is 500 lb lp cylinder 3/8 thick it has water all the way around it holds about 350 gallons of water.C ould this burn bit coal or is the firebox to big,another question is I have access to bit coal I think is out of the dakotas they barge it in for the power companys in st paul which is close ,the guy says they usally sell 25 ton min but would sell me 10 ton it looks fairly good sized coal.I know I have a lot of questions but I appreciate you guys help
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