The Cold Weather Is Here!

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: Rob R. On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 10:59 am

This morning on the way to work I saw a few "heated by wood" houses that had vapors coming out of a second chimney. Guess the stove wasn't up to the task or was burned out by morning...I sure don't miss those days.

If it gets to the point that I need to fire up the oil boiler for extra btu's...it won't be safe for man or beast outside. Right now the EFM is easily doing the job at 50% output.
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: lowfog01 On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 11:18 am

Wahoo! the Harman sure came through last night. 14* when I got up at 4:15 but the house was a toasty. Tonight they are forecasting about the same but after last night I know how to better set my stove to maximize the heat production even more.

My thanks to the forum for showing me how to get the most out of the stove? Keep warm, Lisa
lowfog01
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Mark II & Mark I

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: coalkirk On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 11:56 am

freetown fred wrote:Off to the State Mod. interment camp for you my friend. ;)


But, but, but....wait! Let me explain how I ended up in this lowly state!

When I bought this boiler in 2003, I hadn't found the coal forum yet. :(

I selected it because it was rated to handle my homes heating load for the "normal" winter weather for my region. We historically have not had much teens and below temps. It happens but its not the norm. My thinking was to size it for the norm which I thought would be the most efficient. Sizng for extremes is not efficient.

For the first 8 years, I ran this boiler at about 145*-160* only, constantly sending tempered water (usually about 100*) through a water to air heat exchanger. The fan in the air handler ran 24/7. House stayed a pretty constant temp. This year I added some new controls to the air handler. Now the air handler cycles on and off. (OK, I got tired of hearing my wife complain about the air handler fan running 24/7) The heat exchanger pump cycles on and off. I still temper the water to the heat exchanger somewhat but its usually around 150* or so. Up until last night, the temp in the house was held to whatever the thermostat called for.

This morning at 6:00 am when I went down stairs and saw the temp in the house was 2* lower than the 68* setting, I may have paniced too qucikly. I don't keep a vent pipe on the oil boiler and I have a wire disconnected from the burner so it can't fire. I started the coffee maker and went to the basement to reconnect the vent pipe and attach the wire. I hit the reset button and then heard that awful sound. :shock: That would be the sound of the oil burner actually running. I was overcome with shame and guilt. :oops: Then it hit me!!! I would have to go to the forum and confess my sin, admit my defeat.

If I knew then what I know now, I probably would have asked coalberner to hook me up with a scrapper23 EFM rebuild. I'd have plenty of excess capacity and have a classic beauty in my basement. But life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. So I've got the VF3000 and it saves me thousands per year in oil and meets my needs 99.5% of the time.

So if the powers that be feel I need to be stripped of state mod status and sent to a re-education camp, I'll understand. I still won't be getting a calendar or Christmas card from the oil company. Whoa is me.

:flush:
coalkirk
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF3000
Coal Size/Type: antrhcite/rice coal


Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:22 pm

I haven't gotten a calender from the oil company in years, but I still use the nifty letter opener.
DSCN0828.JPG
(60.23 KiB) Viewed 3 times
View: New PagePopup • Select:BBCode
[nepathumb]32375[/nepathumb]
Wood'nCoal
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1959 EFM 350
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Magnafire Mark I
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Fisher Fireplace Insert

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: titleist1 On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:34 pm

Hey CoalKirk.....
Give it up....don't try for any sympathy from those Freetown Folks.....

You were already on thin ice in their eyes cause you is a girlie man runnin' one o' them thar stoker thingies!!!

That Fred fellow would be much more understanding if you wuz a hand fed guy! ;)


coalkirk wrote:
freetown fred wrote:Off to the State Mod. interment camp for you my friend. ;)


But, but, but....wait! Let me explain how I ended up in this lowly state!

When I bought this boiler in 2003, I hadn't found the coal forum yet.

I selected it because it was rated to handle my homes heating load for the "normal" winter weather for my region. We historically have not had much teens and below temps. It happens but its not the norm. My thinking was to size it for the norm which I thought would be the most efficient. Sizng for extremes is not efficient.

For the first 8 years, I ran this boiler at about 145*-160* only, constantly sending tempered water (usually about 100*) through a water to air heat exchanger. The fan in the air handler ran 24/7. House stayed a pretty constant temp. This year I added some new controls to the air handler. Now the air handler cycles on and off. (OK, I got tired of hearing my wife complain about the air handler fan running 24/7) The heat exchanger pump cycles on and off. I still temper the water to the heat exchanger somewhat but its usually around 150* or so. Up until last night, the temp in the house was held to whatever the thermostat called for.

This morning at 6:00 am when I went down stairs and saw the temp in the house was 2* lower than the 68* setting, I may have paniced too qucikly. I don't keep a vent pipe on the oil boiler and I have a wire disconnected from the burner so it can't fire. I started the coffee maker and went to the basement to reconnect the vent pipe and attach the wire. I hit the reset button and then heard that awful sound. :shock: That would be the sound of the oil burner actually running. I was overcome with shame and guilt. :oops: Then it hit me!!! I would have to go to the forum and confess my sin, admit my defeat.

If I knew then what I know now, I probably would have asked coalberner to hook me up with a scrapper23 EFM rebuild. I'd have plenty of excess capacity and have a classic beauty in my basement. But life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. So I've got the VF3000 and it saves me thousands per year in oil and meets my needs 99.5% of the time.

So if the powers that be feel I need to be stripped of state mod status and sent to a re-education camp, I'll understand. I still won't be getting a calendar or Christmas card from the oil company. Whoa is me.

:flush:
titleist1
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman Mag Stoker (old style) one in basement, one in workshop
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III on standby for long power outages
Coal Size/Type: Rice/Anthracite; Nut/Anthracite

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: Rob R. On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:39 pm

Was the VF3000 running flat out when you decided to fire the oil unit? Not a bad idea to put some fresh fuel through the burner anyway.

I burned a gallon of fuel oil last week while I brushed out the EFM.

:bag: :out:
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: Dennis On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:47 pm

I hate to say it also,but the first day of each month i turn my oil gun on for 5 minutes from 160 to 170 degrees, then shut off till next month.I haven't bought oil since Dec. 2009, and only have 3" of oil left. I guess i see the oil man visiting in the near future. :mad:
Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: spiker On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:02 pm

Just reading through these posts since yesterday kept cracking me up.

Great to see a group of people who celebrate the cold weather.

10 F this morning outside, 67 F inside. I ran the stove at 450 F all night and it did the job. I may try for 500 F the next time it gets this cold. This is my second full year with the hand fed and I keep getting better at having it hit the desired temp.

The wife's comment this morning: "The house is warm" :D

That is mostly because the house stayed warm all night, so the couch did not feel cold as she drank her morning coffee.
spiker
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Salvo
Stove/Furnace Model: Citation

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: Dennis On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:10 pm

spiker wrote:Great to see a group of people who celebrate the cold weather.

bring it on :box: :flex:
Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: steamup On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:50 pm

-8 at least at the house last night, 5 deg. outside when i got up. First year on 100% coal and the super complex system I installed passed with flying colors. The AA-130 just chomped along spitting out btu's.
steamup
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson AA-130, Keystoker K-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: HS Tarm 502 Wood/Coal/Oil
Coal Size/Type: pea, buck, rice

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: steamup On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:56 pm

coalkirk wrote:
freetown fred wrote:Off to the State Mod. interment camp for you my friend. ;)


But, but, but....wait! Let me explain how I ended up in this lowly state!

When I bought this boiler in 2003, I hadn't found the coal forum yet. :(

I selected it because it was rated to handle my homes heating load for the "normal" winter weather for my region. We historically have not had much teens and below temps. It happens but its not the norm. My thinking was to size it for the norm which I thought would be the most efficient. Sizng for extremes is not efficient.

For the first 8 years, I ran this boiler at about 145*-160* only, constantly sending tempered water (usually about 100*) through a water to air heat exchanger. The fan in the air handler ran 24/7. House stayed a pretty constant temp. This year I added some new controls to the air handler. Now the air handler cycles on and off. (OK, I got tired of hearing my wife complain about the air handler fan running 24/7) The heat exchanger pump cycles on and off. I still temper the water to the heat exchanger somewhat but its usually around 150* or so. Up until last night, the temp in the house was held to whatever the thermostat called for.

This morning at 6:00 am when I went down stairs and saw the temp in the house was 2* lower than the 68* setting, I may have paniced too qucikly. I don't keep a vent pipe on the oil boiler and I have a wire disconnected from the burner so it can't fire. I started the coffee maker and went to the basement to reconnect the vent pipe and attach the wire. I hit the reset button and then heard that awful sound. :shock: That would be the sound of the oil burner actually running. I was overcome with shame and guilt. :oops: Then it hit me!!! I would have to go to the forum and confess my sin, admit my defeat.

If I knew then what I know now, I probably would have asked coalberner to hook me up with a scrapper23 EFM rebuild. I'd have plenty of excess capacity and have a classic beauty in my basement. But life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. So I've got the VF3000 and it saves me thousands per year in oil and meets my needs 99.5% of the time.

So if the powers that be feel I need to be stripped of state mod status and sent to a re-education camp, I'll understand. I still won't be getting a calendar or Christmas card from the oil company. Whoa is me.

:flush:



Having to burn a few gallons of oil to get through an extreme temp time is no sin. Coal isn't free either and a highly efficienct coal boiler/system shouldn't be ignored. Hey, even the railroads would help that freight over the hill with an extra engine rather than have all of the needed capacity connected constantly.
steamup
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson AA-130, Keystoker K-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: HS Tarm 502 Wood/Coal/Oil
Coal Size/Type: pea, buck, rice

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: coalkirk On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:33 pm

Rob R. wrote:Was the VF3000 running flat out when you decided to fire the oil unit? Not a bad idea to put some fresh fuel through the burner anyway.

I burned a gallon of fuel oil last week while I brushed out the EFM.

:bag: :out:

Rob

Well the stoker never shut down. I could push a little more coal but I don't want to overfire it. I'm still using my original grates from 2003. They are showing wear but no warpage. I attribute that to not to not pushing the stoker beyond my normal burn rate. I had about an inch of ash at the end of the grate. If I pushed more coal and opened up the combustion fan restrictor more, it would undoubtedly do alittle better. Since low teen and below temps are really the exception here rather than the rule, I prefer for now to burn just a little oil to doing that. If we start moving into an ice age, I may have to re-examine that strategy. As you said, it's not a bad idea to put some fresh fuel through the burner once in awhile anyway. Probably burned a gallon this morning.

The flue that is for the oil boiler which is an 8" x 8" terra cotta is normally not in use. I have in the past had various hand fed and stoker coal stoves connected there just to play with. Over the years I've had a Harman mark I, a Jotul 507 and a mag stoker there. Right now I don't have a stove down there. I could always put one there and leave my basement door open which would send a bunch of black rock btu's scampering up the basement stairs. As it is now my basement level is very toasty, even this morning. My duct work serves that level too which is mostly finished. So it gets forced air heat, radiant off of the boiler and radiant off of the 100' or so of 1 1/4" copper pipe that runs between the boilers. No one lives in the lower level anymore but my philosphy is that heating that space only benefits the floor above. I suppose I could shut off the registers in the lower level and insulate the 1 1/4" copper and maybe event the boiler itself. Bit I hang out down there quite a bit and I like it toasty. I usually keep the first and second levels at 70 degrees. If it was just me here, I'd probably keep it 72 but we heat with coal and menopause in this house. ;) Gotta try to keep momma happy too.

Maybe I'll just sit down stairs and stare at the boiler and drink a beer and think about it. I'm off today and it's 5:00 pm somewhere. :cheers:
coalkirk
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF3000
Coal Size/Type: antrhcite/rice coal

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: coalkirk On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:37 pm

steamup wrote:Having to burn a few gallons of oil to get through an extreme temp time is no sin. Coal isn't free either and a highly efficienct coal boiler/system shouldn't be ignored. Hey, even the railroads would help that freight over the hill with an extra engine rather than have all of the needed capacity connected constantly.


Thanks steamup. That's how I feel too. Even though intellectuallu I know it, it still bugs the crap out of me to hear that oil burner firing! :D I'm a true believer in black rocks.
coalkirk
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF3000
Coal Size/Type: antrhcite/rice coal

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: Rob R. On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 3:02 pm

coalkirk wrote:If it was just me here, I'd probably keep it 72 but we heat with coal and menopause in this house.


:lol:

I like the basement around 75...it makes the floors above very comfortable. I have gotten so spoiled with the warm floors that when we go over to certain friend's houses I bring a pair of slippers.

I've never had to to bring the oil unit online to "help" the EFM, but it is there if I need it.
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: The Cold Weather Is Here!

PostBy: steamup On: Wed Jan 04, 2012 5:02 pm

coalkirk wrote:As it is now my basement level is very toasty, even this morning. My duct work serves that level too which is mostly finished. So it gets forced air heat, radiant off of the boiler and radiant off of the 100' or so of 1 1/4" copper pipe that runs between the boilers. No one lives in the lower level anymore but my philosphy is that heating that space only benefits the floor above. I suppose I could shut off the registers in the lower level and insulate the 1 1/4" copper and maybe event the boiler itself. Bit I hang out down there quite a bit and I like it toasty. I usually keep the first and second levels at 70 degrees. If it was just me here, I'd probably keep it 72 but we heat with coal and menopause in this house. ;) Gotta try to keep momma happy too.

Maybe I'll just sit down stairs and stare at the boiler and drink a beer and think about it. I'm off today and it's 5:00 pm somewhere. :cheers:


Now wait a minute. Let's think about this. Why heat a space to benefit the floor above? Keep it only warm enough to use it and keep the floors from becomming to cold. Shut down those registers. If not, insulate that pipe. Heat the space only when you need it.

At a 99 deg. F. temperature difference (say 170 deg. water temp) between fluid and space, copper pipe looses 93 btuh/ft. With 1" of good fiberglass pipe insulation, that loss is 11 btuh/ft. Now the difference of 82 btuh/ft times 100 feet equals 8200 btuh. That's over 8%. What I am saying is insualate you pipes and gain capacity to put the heat where you want it. Cut those registers back too. Keep the basement 3 to 5 degrees cooler than the occupied space and you will probably make it over the hump without oil.
steamup
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson AA-130, Keystoker K-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: HS Tarm 502 Wood/Coal/Oil
Coal Size/Type: pea, buck, rice