Newb with several questions

 
Paper
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Post by Paper » Mon. May. 02, 2022 9:05 am

First of all, Hello Everyone!!
Long time wood burner who's never burnt a single pc of coal, but I can't start any younger, right? :D
I have a Woodland double door wood stove that I modified years ago from a 8" rear exhaust to a 6" top, and also put a diffuser plate in to force the exhaust slightly forward and then up, rather than straight up the chimney.
Anyway, I'm interested in burning coal in it and am thinking about making a shaker rack to slide in my stove. The door opening is 28", and the stove is 36" deep, and almost 20" tall on the inside, so I've got room to play with. What I'm looking for is suggestions on material and how much opening to have to allow ash to shake through??
I'm currently on the IL/WI state line and my bulk coal source would be central Wisconsin, but in a couple of years I'll be relocating after retirement to my place in WY, and so I'm guessing the coal will burn differently being bituminous out there. :?:

Anyway, I'm not looking to make permanant modifications to my current stove, but just a slide in shaker that I can operate with a stove poker hook. I've been a welder/fabricator for a few decades and have a design in mind, but thought I'd gather a few suggestions before jumping in.


 
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McGiever
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Post by McGiever » Mon. May. 02, 2022 9:32 pm

For burning bituminous coal in your double door wood stove you first must have top-side supply of combustion air, so that means spinners or equal on the doors.

What do you have for a floor inside the stove right now?

 
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Post by Paper » Mon. May. 02, 2022 9:38 pm

I have spinners on the doors and everything is covered in fire brick.
Draft is good, and I typically clean my chimney every two-three weeks because it's a very easy process. Single story ranch with a triple wall stainless chimney. It literally takes a couple of minutes to run the brush down to the stove.

 
Paper
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Post by Paper » Mon. May. 02, 2022 9:49 pm

My dreams stove is probably a Hitzer 55, burning Bitiumous coal once I move to Wyoming.
But I have two years here before retirement, and I'm intrigued by coal burning.

 
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McGiever
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Post by McGiever » Tue. May. 03, 2022 9:25 am

Since you will be burning bit coal with little need of bottom air maybe just burn directly on the bricks. Keep your poker handy to break up fused coal and when needing a ash clean out just let it go cold.

 
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Post by Paper » Tue. May. 03, 2022 9:51 am

Fantastic!! I'll give it a shot next heating season!!

So, what's the main differences in burn/conusumption/etc of Bituminous vs. Anthracite? I'm pretty sure what I have available to me here in the Midwest will be Anthracite (I'll be visiting Centeral Wisconsin Coal Sales in a couple weeks) but I'm guessing the coal available to me a couple years from now will be Bituminous when I'm located in Wyoming. I've seen the huge mines near Gillette.

Thanks for the info and this is great info!!

 
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Post by lzaharis » Tue. May. 03, 2022 10:09 am

The coal sold in the western States of Wyoming and Montana is Sub Bituminous coal
unless you can buy anthracite coal from Colorado.
Central Wisconsin Coal Sales only carries Bituminous coal mined in Southern Illinois.

You will be much better off buying either a railroad pot belly stove or a ranch cook stove made by US stove company
to burn this coal as the pot belly stove and ranch cook stove is designed to burn soft coals.


 
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Post by Paper » Tue. May. 03, 2022 10:18 am

Thank you for that info!! Would the Wyoming coal work in something like a Hitzer 55 stove?
As I mentioned, I'm still setting up my future heating out there and I have a pretty much clean slate and starting from scratch. The place has a Mr. Heat ceiling mounted heater, and I'll be installing a mini-split (for cooling/heating to about freezing) when I move there full time.
I'm just looking for heat that doesn't require electricity to operate when I'm out there.

 
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Post by lzaharis » Tue. May. 03, 2022 11:17 am

Please do not use your current stove for burning soft coal.

Use either the farm and ranch stove or the pot belly stove from US STOVE as
you need a much smaller square area to burn the western Sub Bituminous Coal
from Wyoming and Montana more effectively.

You can always take the US stove with you when you move which is the better idea.
The farm and ranch stove has four burner plates on it to let you tend the fire and also
boil water to keep the humidity up in your retirement home and cook in the event of a
power outage.

You will want to buy the Sub Bituminous coal that is oiled for the heating season
as unoiled coal will not store well in the off season.

 
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Post by Paper » Tue. May. 03, 2022 11:36 am

Thank you very much!!!

So, would anthracite nut coal in a bag from Tractor Supply or other locations be something I could burn in my current stove? Just mostly to get a longer burn without choking draft down wood to the point of making creosote.

 
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Post by warminmn » Tue. May. 03, 2022 12:27 pm

There are anthracite dealers in Wisconsin, several. This place was selling a lot of it a decade ago. Unsure about now. https://bossertfireplaceshoppe.com/ Contact Blaschak and other bagged coal wholesalers for other locations near you. There will be more than you think. Harder to get it out west unless you order a semi load of it.

The Hitzer 55 should burn about anything you want to throw in it. Your present stove isnt going to work well with anthracite.

 
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Post by lzaharis » Tue. May. 03, 2022 12:36 pm

I am not sure as you need to have the natural draft combustion air under the fire as well as over it for coal to burn properly.

The other issue is the coal grates, you need properly sand cast coal grates and a grate frame for them to rest on burn coal.

I suppose you could find a foundry that still casts Kalamazoo coal grates and build a frame for the exact number of grates that would fit in your stove but by the time you do that you could probably buy two of the pot belly or farm and ranch stoves from Tractor Supply.

I have not checked the US Stove models but a good pot belly stove should have coal grates that are either shaken or cast teeth cast in the edges of the grates and are rotated with a worm gear and handle to grind up the ashes and let them drop into the ash pit.

 
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Post by Paper » Tue. May. 03, 2022 2:40 pm

Thanks for the info and I'll check out Bossert. I've probably driven/ridden by the place dozens of times, as I often wander through Mineral Point while wandering on motorcycle. Guess I'll have to go have breakfast at the Pointer Cafe and put my hands on equipment.

So much to learn!! Thanks everyone!!

 
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Post by McGiever » Wed. May. 04, 2022 9:40 am

Anthracite coal fields of continuous 48 states are in central to eastern Pennsylvania.

 
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Post by Paper » Wed. May. 04, 2022 11:42 am

Bossert got back to me and they have anthracite nut or rice for $380 a ton in 40# bags, or $8 each. I looked and they're actually 50 yards from where I'd stop for breakfast all the time. Probably have to actually take my truck for this, though. :)


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