Stoker for a Small < 1000 Square Foot Well Insulated Home?

Tifford
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Post Sat. Mar. 04, 2017 8:22 pm

Hello,

I'm looking for a small coal burning stove.

Looking for features like:
Auto feed system
Not a lot of BTU output
Auto temperature control

I have a house that is less than 1000 square feet. The house is well insulated with 2x6 walls. I currently have a wood stove that is approximately 24" by 24" by 24". If I put 3 sticks of wood in it, it heats the house nicely. If I load the wood stove up, it'll run us out of the house. I have oil as my main heat source but would like a coal burning stove for a few reasons like:
Coal is cheap
Oil could go through the roof price wise
Wood requires a lot of handling and I'm not getting younger.

So, is there a small coal burning stove out there with a decent hopper, auto feed, temp control?


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Rick 386
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Stoker Coal Boiler: AA 260 heating both sides of twin farmhouse
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: LL Hyfire II w/ coaltrol in garage
Coal Size/Type: Pea in AA 260, Rice in LL Hyfire II
Other Heating: Gas fired infared at work
Location: Royersford, Pa
Contact:

Post Sat. Mar. 04, 2017 8:31 pm

https://www.leisurelinestove.com/product/lilheater/

With the Coaltrol feature, it should not overheat your small house.

Or look for an older Alaska stoker stove in Craig's list, etc. But without the Coaltrol or similar thermostat control, you would have to guess how much feed you need. The beauty of the Coaltrol is it determines feed, blower speed etc based on desired temp.

Rick

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Hambden Bob
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Posts: 6554
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman 1998 Magnum Stoker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Blower Model Coal Chubby 1982-Serial#0097
Coal Size/Type: Rice-A-Roni ! / Nut
Other Heating: Pro-Pain Forced Air
Location: Hambden Twp. Geauga County,Ohio

Post Sat. Mar. 04, 2017 9:30 pm

Yep,sounds like Dave(Flyer5) and Matt(Mathaus)'s Leisure Line Lil' Heater should cut it for You ! :yes:

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oliver power
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Stoker Coal Boiler: KEYSTOKER Kaa-2
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93 & 30-95, Vigilant (pre-Vigilant-II), D.S. 1600 Circulator
Location: Near Dansville, NY

Post Sun. Mar. 05, 2017 3:18 am

Hi Tifford,

I almost didn't reply to your post, as I see you are looking for an auto feed (Stoker) stove, with very little BTU output capability. ............and if that's the case, you're covered.

However, I also see you're a "Wood Burner". Being a wood burner, that tells me you need to be informed / educated on burning coal, and coal stoves. A coal stove burns completely different than a wood stove. You'll have more control, longer burns, and way less work. For starters, I'm assuming you want to put your new coal stove in place of the wood stove, using the wood stove chimney.

Let me ask you this; If your power goes out, you have no oil furnace, correct? That's the nice part about the wood stove. It's a back up to your oil furnace. If you buy a "Stoker" coal stove, you've lost your back up. When the power goes out, so doesn't the stoker stove.

If you were to buy a hand fired coal stove, you'd still have your back up to the oil furnace. There are many hand fired coal stoves out there. I'm going to talk about the HITZER 30-95, as I've run one for years.

The HITZER 30-95 would fit your bill perfectly. It would be everything you'd want. Low BTU output when heat is not needed. Auto feed (Gravity Fed Hopper). Auto (Bi-Metallic) thermostat, along with ash pan door vents. Long burn times. Heat during power outage. Easy stove to run. No monkeying with it.

You have to do everything to a stoker, that you have to do to the HITZER 30-95. ........and that is; empty the ashes, and top off the hopper ( in that order). The only additional thing you need to do at tending time, is to shake the grate. That takes about 30 seconds. Maybe a minute. IF poking is needed, maybe another minute. NOT a big deal at all.

Here's the HITZER tending procedure:
1.) Empty the ashes from the previous tending.
2.) Shake the grate, and poke ONLY IF NEEDED.
3.) Top off the hopper with coal.
That's it! You don't touch the stove again for AT LEAST another 12 hours minimum. Every 12 hours is a nice schedule for hand fired stoves. During warmer outside temps, one could be stretched out to 24 hour tendings, as less BTU's are needed.

A bad part of stoker stoves in the living area is FAN NOISE. You have two fans. A combustion fan, and a circulator fan. You can not shut these fans off.
The HITZER 30-95 also has a fan. It's a circulator fan. It can be shut off, or not used at all. YOUR CHOICE. I would recommend getting the fan option, whether you use it or not.

The HITZER 50-93 is another great stove, that you can idle down low. Just not as low as the 30-95. The 30-95, with its single grate, concentrates the air flow to less coal.

coalfan
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Hand Fed Coal Stove: handfed coal stove
Coal Size/Type: nut/ pea ant.some bit.
Stove/Furnace Model: ds circulator/1500 sl/wh.
Location: NW ohio

Post Sun. Mar. 05, 2017 3:34 am

well put o.p. !

Tifford
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Post Mon. Mar. 06, 2017 10:27 am

Thanks for the replies. Looks like you guys helped me narrow it down to two stoves.

Hitzer 30-90.....pros: No noise from a blower and heat if the power goes out.

Leisure Line Lil.......Pros: Thermostat control, long run time. Have to hook up generator to blower if power goes out OR stick a Ker-o-sun heater in the basement for those power outages.

The noise of the blower might be a determining factor since my TV is close to where the stove would go. I see if I can't find some videos of both heaters and then drive to find these stoves in person. I figure if I'm going to have this stove for the next 25 years I'd better be happy with my choice.

Thanks again guys for helping me narrow down the field.

rberq
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Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300 with hopper
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Anthracite Nut
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators (fuel oil); propane
Location: Central Maine

Post Mon. Mar. 06, 2017 1:35 pm

Tifford wrote:The noise of the blower might be a determining factor since my TV is close to where the stove would go.
Blower noise is better for your mental health than most TV. :P
But blower noise drove me crazy with my Harman Mark 1 stove, and I suspect the two blowers on a stoker would be worse. Trying to judge noise level in the large area and/or noisy environment of a stove shop is not easy. What seems quiet there may be excessive in your living room.
If you get the Hitzer 30-95 I highly advise getting the hopper version (I'm not sure there IS a non-hopper version, but get the hopper).

Tifford
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Post Fri. Mar. 10, 2017 4:32 pm

How well does the Hitzer 30-95 keep the temp of a room at a certain temperature?

Lots of research to do and I'm glad this site is back up.


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oliver power
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Stoker Coal Boiler: KEYSTOKER Kaa-2
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93 & 30-95, Vigilant (pre-Vigilant-II), D.S. 1600 Circulator
Location: Near Dansville, NY

Post Sat. Mar. 11, 2017 1:36 pm

The 30-95 will maintain room temperature quite well, with use of fan. If tired of fan noise, turn fan off. If far side of room cools some, turn the fan back on. The 30-95 is an excellent performer (With Fan).

Another nice stove that I believe would fit your situation is the D.S. circulator model 1400, or 1500. No fan what so ever. It circulates nicely, in silence. Feels like hot water heat. Will the D.S. perform like the HITZER 30-95?, NO WAY. Does the D.S. need to perform like the HITZER 30-95?, Maybe Not. Depends on floor plan, and how well insulated you are.

I know from personal experience, the HITZER 30-95 performance puts the D.S. 1600 Circulator to shame. Yet, the 30-95 is half the stove of the D.S. 1600. Don't get me wrong. I like my D.S.. In a house setting, it may be just fine. In a shop setting, not very good. I'll be replacing the D.S. 1600 with a HITZER 50-93 for next winter.

rtay677
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Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: nut

Post Sat. Mar. 11, 2017 9:24 pm

Hi.
About the power outage and having heat. If you expect an outage to exceed 24 hours thus chilling the home, you might be well off setting up a battery bank in the basement. 2 deep cycle 6 volt golf cart types in series (12v output) on a trickle charger with a 120volt inverter(small) will be a decent standby for your blower only. Would take some dedicated wiring that you can figure out I'm sure. If you're at their mercy like I am, I'd do that as I did to have peace of mind on a cold dark winters night.

Tifford
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Post Thu. Mar. 16, 2017 6:02 pm

Well, I went to a store that is dedicated to coal stoves and sells coal.

They carried Leasure Line and Hizter.

They were out of the Lil Heater and Pioneer......go figure. They had the 30-95.

Thoughts on what I learned:

The woman had the 30-95 in her home. She said she gets 12 to 13 hours burn time. The lil heater will run about a day and the pioneer about 2 days. The 30-95 takes bigger coal and has to be shaken.

It took some digging but I found that the lil heater and pioneer can go down to a 5,000 BTU output. The 30-95 goes down to 11,000 BTU output.

I am leaning towards the pioneer for the following reasons:
1. It can put out as little heat as the smaller unit
2. It can put out more heat than the little unit
3. It can run longer due to the bigger hopper
4. It has the bigger hopper
5. If power goes out I can take two courses of action
A. A cheap kerosene heater. Or
B. A generator
6. Coaltroll
7. Good reviews

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oliver power
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Joined: Sun. Apr. 16, 2006 9:28 am
Stoker Coal Boiler: KEYSTOKER Kaa-2
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93 & 30-95, Vigilant (pre-Vigilant-II), D.S. 1600 Circulator
Location: Near Dansville, NY

Post Thu. Mar. 16, 2017 9:25 pm

Your call.......... Personally, #5 would be my deciding factor. I don't like A or B

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windyhill4.2
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Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both
Location: Jonestown,Pa.17038

Post Thu. Mar. 16, 2017 10:06 pm

Using a cheap kerosene heater inside your house makes as much sense as allowing a herd of pigs in to warm you. During & after their stay with you,your house will stink !! :sick:

Sunny Boy
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Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Anthracite Industrial, domestic hot water heater
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood range 208, # 6 base heater, 2 Modern Oak 118.
Coal Size/Type: Nuts !
Other Heating: Oil &electric plenum furnace
Location: Central NY

Post Thu. Mar. 16, 2017 11:15 pm

windyhill4.2 wrote:Using a cheap kerosene heater inside your house makes as much sense as allowing a herd of pigs in to warm you. During & after their stay with you,your house will stink !! :sick:
A kerosene heater is just as bad as if you piped the car exhaust into the house - they both pump out carbon monoxide.

And opening a window doesn't help much unless there's so much cross ventilation that a lot of the heat is lost. What makes safe ventilation difficult is that carbon monoxide is far more easily absorb in you system than oxygen, but it stays in the body far longer and blocks oxygen absorption. So even small doses of carbon monoxide become cumulative and over time can build to toxic levels in the body. You slowly asphyxiate. There's a very good reason that kerosene heaters were banned in many places.

https://www.reference.com/vehicles/kerosene-fumes-dangerous-fc742d1b65f458bb

You and the family will be safer if you get a small generator and put it outside and use an extension cord to run the stove.

Paul

Tifford
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Post Sun. Mar. 19, 2017 9:41 am

Stopped by a place that had the pioneer in stock. It looks like a nice stove and I am sold. I will get a generator for when the power goes out.

I owe just 6,300 on my house and it should be paid for this summer. After that the pioneer will be the first upgrade....then hot water heater....metal roof....hardwood floors.


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