Unburned nut coal in grate

PostBy: LsFarm On: Thu Jan 25, 2007 2:43 pm

When you have lost the fire, was there any portion of the grate not covered by coal?? The only problem with banking a fire is that the shallow part of the firebox without the deep new coal will burn out sooner, leaving a way for combustion air to get around the pile of coal. This greatly reduces the air to the active coal bed, and soon it will go out.

So if you have deep coal on one side of the firebox, once it has started burning you need to either add more coal to the shallow portion, or rake the coal level.

I don't bank my fires. I have a deep firebox, and if I have a hot bed of coals, I add 4-6" of nut and stove mix coal, give it half an hour and it is a bright red with 6"+ blue-white flames, then I add on another 6-10". This appears to 'smother' the fire, but you can hear the coal cracking and popping, and 30 minutes later it is all glowing red again, and it will burn for 10-12 hours with a 14-16" deep coal bed.

I would open your manual damper at least 20%. This will increase your draft. What I suspect is happening, is that when your fire is fresh, you have enough heat in the chimney that even with the manual damper closed you have enough draft to keep the fire going. But as the coal burns down, you have less heat, therfore less draft and soon your fire goes out. Try leaving the damper open more, and close off the combustion air a little to compensate for the added draft.

You may need to get a barometric damper to even out your draft.

Greg L

.
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

PostBy: dirvine96 On: Thu Jan 25, 2007 3:02 pm

Mark,

What you might want to try leaving the manual damper alone until you get the hang of it. Then slowly start to paly with it and see how your stove burn. I don't think you're going to over fire your stove. The worst thats going to happen is you'll put to much heat up the chimney. With my stove I open the damper before I shake and before I refuel. If I put a large amount of coal in I leave it open for about 10-20 minutes. If I just put in a couple of shovels in, I close it and walk away. Every stove is different, thats why I think you should just leave it alone until your figure out its basic personality.

Just my option.

Good Luck Don
dirvine96
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer 82FA

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Thu Jan 25, 2007 3:05 pm

Greg, I agree with the damper opening 20%, sounds like a good idea.

The baro's only function is as a draft limiter, it can do nothing but aggravate a poor draft situation as they leak even when closed.

Mark, how about some chimney details?
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea


Chimney Details / Damper

PostBy: Mark D On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 10:38 am

Bear with me all, as I am a coal virgin & still have my training wheels on.

DAMPER:
Thanks for the feedback on this one. I think I'll do the 20% open & then monitor what happens. I definitely need to learn the quirks & details about the stove - it never really occurred to me to play around with this.

CHIMNEY:
My stove is in the basement which has 8' ceilings; from the stove, I have a 6" elbow, and then a straight run to where it elbows into the wall / chimney approximately 5' above the floor. The chimney, is brick, and then rises approximately 30' above grade, to where it ends. The stove is the only thing piped into this chimney.

Thanks for the help guys. I'm going to clean her out tonight & prep for my long weekend - just me & my stove :) I'll start it Sat. am & then monitor it throughout.
Mark D
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Franco Belge

PostBy: LsFarm On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 11:21 am

Mark, if you can, buy either one of the magnetic thermomters or buy a laser thermometer, you can find them at good autoparts stores or Harbor Freight.com . The laser has so many uses, I'd go with it. About $45 I think from Harbor Freight.

I'd leave the damper open, control the heat and fire with the ashpan air control. Then monitor the chimney pipe temp, if it is getting above 250-300, then I'd cut back the hand damper maybe from straight open to half, watch the temp, and see what happens.

With a bit of time and experimentation, you will get it figured out.

Take care, stay warm, Greg
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

PostBy: spc On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 11:55 am

I thought closing the damper kept heat from escaping as long as you have good draft? My stack temp is between 180 -200.
spc
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 12:48 pm

spc wrote:I thought closing the damper kept heat from escaping as long as you have good draft? My stack temp is between 180 -200.


Yes, but in this case it may be so restrictive it kills the fire. The key is really the chimney, a good one makes a low fire so much easier.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

PostBy: dirvine96 On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 2:54 pm

:(
dirvine96
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer 82FA

PostBy: dutch On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 3:21 pm

coaledsweat wrote:Greg, I agree with the damper opening 20%, sounds like a good idea.

The baro's only function is as a draft limiter, it can do nothing but aggravate a poor draft situation as they leak even when closed.

Mark, how about some chimney details?



As I read more and more, I sense a conflict of opinions about
the baro. On one hand, it sounds like they can regulate the
draft, for optimum performance. The other take is that it is
really only there to prevent overfiring.

I have never touched mine, and have never seen mine move
from the closed position. Even the one on my boiler right next to it moves
when the wind is blowing across the chimney. (1 chimney
with 2 flues). I have no problems burning as I know it, and
feel the stove performs well, but am always wondering about
efficiency, and coal usage. I normally run with stack temps
from 200-225, but on colder weather I will open my ash door
air control to run a little hotter.
If I open my ash door before shaking, (a quick warm up), and
I then reload with high temps, I still don't see the baro move,
and I can tell there is a very good draft going on by the way the
stove is behaving.

I guess my question is this:
Without a meter, is it worth trying to adjust that baro , maybe when
I have the stove really roaring, so that it opens a bit, and watch it
as the temps come down and see if it affects the draft at normal
temps?

And, will any baro adjustment really improve performance? or is it
really just there to prevent overdraft/downdrafts?

some more details of my setup... basement location for the Mark III,
of a 1700 sq ft ranch, with masonry chimney up thru house, above peak,
and a fairly well protected area,,, not on top of a hill with high winds very common.

thanks for any input
dutch
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Alaska Channing III

PostBy: WNY On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 4:24 pm

When I talked to my coal dealer and going to convert my Direct Vent to a regular chimney, Just remove the power vent and hook it to the chimney. He said I didn't need a baro damper since it was a bottom vent anyway...if that makes a difference or not? I will try it without and see how it goes maybe this weekend once I move the stove? :)
WNY
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Keystoker 90K, Leisure Line Hyfire I
Coal Size/Type: Rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Keystoker, LL & CoalTrol
Stove/Furnace Model: 90K, Hyfire I, VF3000 Soon

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Fri Jan 26, 2007 4:58 pm

The baro will regulate the draft only when it exceeds the setpoint. The only way I know of to set one properly is with a draft gauge or manometer. They do have #s that are fairly close to set-up the unit, but without a gauge you will never know where it really is. Be carefull that the counterweight is on the correct slide for the stovepipes orientation (vertical or horizontal). Overdraft can overfire a unit, that is the saftey issue. But even if the unit doesn't overheat it will waste a lot of energy up the chimney if the draft is to high. So yes, it is more than a safety.
My own baro never really worked much unless it is windy or fired up until I set it properly with a gauge. It moves more now, especially in this cold but not a lot more. It's antics are more or less determined by your chimney's draft. If it's good, it will be working hard. If it is poor, the baro won't have a lot to do. But it will be there if needed.
Most unit manuals will require a baro, some do not mention it. I personally feel good sense requires it. :wink:
If you have a real poor draft to begin with it can make it worse however. This is why a proper drafting chimney is so important.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea