Welcome to the forum. Sit down with a beverage of choice and read through the threads, you will find a wealth of experience about your's and similar stoves.
Here is what usually is the problem with your type of stove, AND mine by the way, I have avery similar type of firebox.
You need to pile on the coal; at least 6" deep. First make a hot wood fire, cover all the grate with fire, and add several inches of coal, keep the ash pan draft open, and the secondary air in the loading door closed. Let the first layer of coal get hot, you should see clear/blue/white flames several inches above the coal.
Then load on several more inches of coal. Don't worry about smothering the fire, it will steam a little, it will snap/crackle/pop like rice-crispies. close the loading door, keep the lower draft open, top closed. Give it 30-40 minutes then check the fire, you will see a bed of red with black spots. With dancing blue/white flames. This fire is about 900-1400*.
The most common 'error' is leaving some of the grate open, uncovered, you can't allow ANY place for air to get around the bed of coals. All combustion air must go through the bed of coals.
For an experiment I had a good hot coal fire going, and I raked an opening down to the grate, a slot about 1"x7". Within an hour the 20"x20" bed of coals was black, it had gone almost completely out. I was able to recover the fire, but just barely in time. I covered the slot in the grate backup, and turned on the combustion blower on HI. It took a long time to get the few remaining hot coals to re-lite the firebed.
I have a long 48" firebox, good for a big wood fire, but very bad for a coal fire. So I covered the back half of the grates with a plate of steel to COMPLETELY block any air getting through the grate. At the front end of the steel plate I made a steel framework to hold firebrick, and I made a new back wall of firebrick. See the attached photo.. in the photo I don't have the 45* sloped firebrick installed.
Just inside my loading door I put a stack of firebrick on edge, to create a removable front wall. Utilizing the new shorter and deeper firebox, I have been able to burn coal quite effectively. The biggest issue I have is the ash from the fire tends to get 'stuck' on the sloped firebrick on each side of the grate. A true coal firebox willhave the firebrick either vertical or near viertical.
I have a 4' long steel poker with a 4" 'L' bent on the end, I use this to 'rake' the sides of the firebox over the sloped firebrick to get the ash to get down to the grate. A bit of a pain, but the only way to keep the firebox from clogging up with ash.
I hope this helps. Greg L
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