Bituminous in a stoker

Bituminous in a stoker

PostBy: gambler On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 10:58 am

Under the Leisure Line section of this forum there is a thread about bituminous in a stoker. I thought that I would post the question here and maybe get some more replies. I am very interested in hearing from people that have tried this because I can get bituminous coal where I live for about 1/4 to 1/5 the cost of anthracite ($50 a ton). I have a Leisure Line Pioneer and I do not want to try the bituminous if it will cause damage to the stove or worse catch the hopper on fire. So if there is anyone out there that has used bituminous in a top fed stoker I would like to hear from you and how it worked out.
gambler
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer

PostBy: europachris On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 11:21 am

I don't think you'll have a issue with damaging the stove, and I don't think a hopper fire is too likely except at maybe a long time spent at low feed rates (giving the fire a chance to burn back to the hopper). I'm not familiar with the feeder design on that stove to know.

I think the bigger issue is if the stove can handle the size of the coal and also burn it properly with the tendency of most bituminous coals to swell and stick together as well as the ash to fuse into a big clinker.

I'd love to have a stoker that would burn the bituminous we get here in Illinois. It's very high in volatiles, clinkers like crazy, and has quite a high sulfur content. It will smoke like a tire fire in a poorly designed stove.

An underfed unit like HardWood's Combustioneer would be the ticket. He burns that Ohio coal with excellent results.

Call Jerry at LeisureLine. He and I discussed this exact topic at length a month or two ago, and he's working on the issue. It's going to boil down to the specific coal you have and whether it will work or not.

chris
europachris
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM 350/Iron Fireman
Stove/Furnace Model: Custom bituminous burner

PostBy: LsFarm On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 12:18 pm

Chris has outlined the issue very well, the problem will be with the coal you have available.
Anthracite when it is shoveled onto the grate in your LeisureLine stoker will be a handfull of individual pieces of coal. And they will stay that way till they get pushed off the end of the bed or grate.

Bituminous coal will tend to swell, stick together into one chunk, and quite possibly stick to the sides of the chute of the grate.

Bituminous is usually pretty 'dirty', that is it has lots of differing sizes of coal in each load, and lots of fines. So getting well screened coal will also be an issue.

I have a few buckets of bituminous arund here, I'll try screening some and try it in my Pioneer in my shop. Darn, I just put a new glass in the door, it's gonna be black in about 5 imutes of bitum burning :shock: :lol: :(

IF I find time I'll try this experiment tonight or tomorrow morning.

Greg L

Chris the LL stoker is very similar to the one you own, we can compare side by side when you are here.

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

Visit Lehigh Anthracite

PostBy: Yanche On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:03 pm

When I bought my Anthracite only AHS S-130 stoker four years ago, Jeff the company owner told me about a boiler they sold to a plumber in KY. He had large plumbing job to convert a school boiler from bituminous coal to oil. Part of the contract was to remove the existing coal. I don't remember the exact amount but it was a large amount in excess of 25 tons. Since the coal was free he wanted to put it to home use. AHS reluctantly sold him a S-130 boiler with a modification to the combustion blower speed. In spite of all additional efforts, modifications and experiments by a knowledgeable owner it didn't work. The boiler was returned.

Yanche
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

PostBy: LsFarm On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 5:03 pm

Hello Rick, I added a handfull of bituminous to the existing anthracite fire in the LeisureLine pioneer in my shop. I wouldn't ever recommend trying this coal in any anthracite stoker appliance.

The Bituminous did what bituminous does: thick yellow oily-looking flames, with thick black sooty smoke, The fire is obscured by the thick smoke in the stove, and the window glass is clouding up rapidly.

The coal was only 3/4" thick, I could see the coals through the gaps in the bituminous. But the coal appears to be sticking together in a big chunk, I

The only way I'd consider trying to feed bituminous through a bed-type stoker, would be if I added an other blower and put a secondary air pipe above the stoker grate to burn off the the thick sooty smoke. The inside of the stove box is going to be covered with black soot. The regular fly ash from anthracite coal is dusty, but not black and impossible to remove from carpets etc.

I'll look at the fire in an hour or two and see how bad the clinker will be.

Greg L

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

PostBy: gambler On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 5:13 pm

Greg, thanks for doing the burn trial for me. Now I don't have to get my stove all gunked up!! :lol:

I was just curious as to how the bituminous would burn.
gambler
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer

PostBy: LsFarm On: Fri Feb 23, 2007 6:55 pm

I looked at the sample of bituminous coal, it has fused into a 4"x7" chunk, floating on the top of the anthracite on the grate. It will eventually be pushed off the end of the grate as fist sized hard clinker.

This particular bituminous coal has too high a swelling index to be considered for use in a stoker, I can't see a way to make it work.

Greg L.

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

Visit Lehigh Anthracite

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