Considering a Boiler?

Stoker Coal Boilers automatically feed the coal and have controls and pumps just like any conventions boiler. They are intended to be used as a primary heat and often have domestic hot water coils as an added bonus. They can be set up independently or in dual sytem with your existing oil/gas boiler. They can accommodate both hot water base board or steam plumbing.
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coalkirk
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Posts: 4682
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 Mon. Jul. 14, 2008 2:29 pm

One factor that should be strongly considered now is the size coal it willl burn. Rice is a problem now and if I were in the market for a coal boiler, I'd be looking for one that burned pea.
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.

coollx
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Post Mon. Jul. 14, 2008 3:48 pm

The manufacturer recommends burning rice or buckwheat coal in the Keystokers I'm looking at so I'm curious why "rice" is a problem? Availability?

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coalkirk
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Posts: 4682
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 Mon. Jul. 14, 2008 5:18 pm

Yes, availability is the problem.
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.

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e.alleg
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Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: 520
Location: western ny

Post Wed. Jul. 16, 2008 8:59 am

Blaschak and Reading both produce rice coal and I don't think they plan on running out (and going out of business) any time soon.
Burning coal is definitely worth the extra work involved.
"Good enough" is not good enough.

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Freddy
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Posts: 6606
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 Wed. Jul. 16, 2008 9:21 am

The two boilers that I know of that burn Pea are Alternate Heat ystems and Axeman Anderson.

There is a temoprary issue with bulk Rice. You can get it with a few days notice at some places. I think there's plenty of bagged rice.
Orrington, Maine
Fred

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

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Richard S.
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Joined: Fri. Oct. 01, 2004 8:35 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite
Location: NEPA

Post Wed. Jul. 16, 2008 10:33 am

e.alleg wrote:Blaschak and Reading both produce rice coal and I don't think they plan on running out (and going out of business) any time soon.
You're missing the point. All the breakers make rice coal but its the most popular size. 45 to 50% of my customers burned rice coal. They don't specifically make sizes. They crack it and get what they get, then they screen it and get X amount of each size. To "make" rice coal they have to crush up larger sizes like pea coal but they don't like to do that because of the expense. First it has to be re-crushed and re-screened, you're also "making" a lot of sizes smaller than rice that do not carry the premium price. e.g you're crushing up a product that is perfectly salable that commands the same price or nearly the same price as rice to partially make one that is not. The incentive to make rice is not all that great, and if they start doing that the price for the rice is going to rise dramatically.

The smaller sizes like Barley they can sell which is the next size down from rice and that is usually 10 to 15% cheaper than the rice. The next size down is practically dirt which is sold to different customers like those that use it for filtration but you don't get the premium price for it.

As I mentioned in the other thread rice becomes a problem near the end of the winter especially during cold snaps and that's an issue now before all these people started buying these stoves. Generally at this point in time breakers are stock piling coal. The guy that delivered my coal said there isn't much there at all and usually at this point in time they'd have 500 ton laying there at least. The one year they had so much coal laying there they were running out room and had to knock some banks down to make more room.

FYI the Keystoker boilers burn buck, I think my brother has a ka-6 and that's all he uses.
There is a temoprary issue with bulk Rice
This should not be an issue at all at this time of the year. It's only going to get worse. Most people don't start ordering their coal until the end of August. ;) Usually they start trickling in at this point and then it snowballs from there until the start of November where it evens out.

Having said all that you also have to remember that those stock piles provide a buffer for when the breaker is shut down. Most breakers will stop running when the temps drop down below 10 to 20 degrees. No stock pile no coal.

Edit: Let me put it to you this way, there is more people using this site now than there was in this past fall and winter. This place was ghost town at this time of the year 2 years ago, you'd be lucky if there was a few posts a day and a few people online. The traffic right now compared to last year at this time is 5X what it was and that was surprisingly good then.
"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."

- Albert Einstein

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