Thanks, coal berner... even though I grew up in the Valley always knowing about coal, I've never KNOWN coal. It is still coming as a surprise as to just how close we really are to the mines, even with an ex-miner living right next door to me while I was growing up. Hell, I even remember climbing Mt. Pisgah with good friends from Jim Thorpe and coming home with a beach bucket of coal just lying by the side of the trails (around the trail and area leading up to Blue Heaven, they must have lost tons off the sides over the years...). Here I am at the top looking over the Blue Heaven mine...
But even with all that it still takes a second-take as to just how close we are to what I read is the heart of the whole industry. The breakers you kindly listed are actually a real short trip, time to think about getting some of the people I work with with CDL's (work at MACK) to go in with me for renting a small dump body and do a tiny coop thing with the few people I know burning coal. I'll start contacting the breakers to see what there low limit is, I know we can't handle a full trailer load and will have to settle for a small dump body.
The last time I helped burn coal.... I remember helping my grandfather in Easton when we visited to shovel coal from the coal room into the L&DBL...(The Lehigh & Delaware Basement Line he called it...) the absolute most amazing and coolest contraption ever for a 7 year old, a tiny rail car on teeny tracks right in the floor that moved coal from the coal room to dump into a small pit that the auger drew from..moved the coal a whole whopping 15 feet or so with a 90 curve. Actually carried about 60lbs a load and really dumped! (I have no clue what that old furnace was, but it was enormous, ominous black, and looked like something from "The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy"). Then, especially if it was really cold and snowy or sleety when we were out playing while visiting, my brothers and I would take off our wet coats and stand on the massive iron grate that filled the entire space between the "front parlor" and the dining room. Looking down into that scary black pit, with hot air blowing us dry in no time, made us both nervous and quickly dry. I remember playing with a Tonka Tow Truck in the dining room and somehow lost the whole Red rotating Light assembly from the roof into that black pit. The comment was dryly made by all concerned, barely looking up from their papers or coffee and shoofly "well, kiss that truck goodbye".
But I never really got over stepping over it rather quickly even later in life, even when they switched to gas in the 70's. So after those memories, I'm SO glad I'm going with the boiler so that I can just soak up the nice, even radiator heat!
Again, thanks for giving me an option to work on!