AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: EarthWindandFire On: Fri Dec 30, 2011 11:52 am

I was browsing the AHS website and came upon the WOC boilers. They seem to be very well designed from what I've read but not well publicized. I like the fact that they have a Riello oil burner and have Auto switch over. The Riello is a better burner than Beckett in my opinion and of course, the Auto switch over is priceless!

Does anyone have one of these units or have any feedback?
EarthWindandFire
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Leisure Line Lil' Heater.
Other Heating: Oil Furnace and Kerosene Heaters.

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Rob R. On: Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:02 pm

Off the top of my head I can think of two forum members that have one. Here are some of their posts:

AHS Customer Experience Poll (EVEN IF YOU DON"T OWN ONE)

Real Rating BTU

Dennis seems to like his, Phil sounds like he is struggling...perhaps due to a sizing or piping issue. They look like a well built unit...but I have never cared for coal/oil units; there is always a compromise.
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: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Dennis On: Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:07 pm

I have the woc55, 225kbtu coal & oil,180k wood,55% effencinty on wood,70% on coal and 88% on oil. 1400 lbs.,3/4" stainless steel fire box,1/4" outer shell, 59 gal. vessel
it can burn bit. coal also. It has the combustion blower in the ash pan for ant. coal and has a motorized air draft on the door for wood and hook up a chain to the door lever to the bottom ash door draft for bit. coal. And for the Riello burner i used it for 1 1/2 days and only fire it once a month,it sounds like a jet plane with the size of the firebox.Yes,you can have the auto switch over from coal/wood to oil when the boiler temps. drop below set temps.I believe they had thought of everything on their multi-fuel burners.Its a real heat monster,I have reduced the firebox in half and still have 80 lbs. of coal in it at 13"deep bed for 15 hr. burns without having to nurse the fire back.I shake down and throw 30 lbs. on and shut the door a walk away(5 minutes).Before I reduced the firebox I was always dumping into my radatiors. I had asked Ben at AHS why they dont advertise or push their multi-fuels,his reply was they want to sell their coal and wood guns. Dennis
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Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: macdabs On: Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:02 am

When I was in the showroom at AHS I looked at the WOC models and was very impressed. I just wish they would make a WOC model that is a stoker also or a wood/ coal stoker even would be nice. After moving on from a DS handfed boiler I don't think I could ever go back from the coalgun or any kind of a stoker. Cutting wood or even stacking the wood didn't bother me. The fact I had to be around at that particular moment in time to refuel the boiler was the issue.

Mac
macdabs
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS 260
Coal Size/Type: Pea
Other Heating: Pellet,oil
Stove/Furnace Make: AHS
Stove/Furnace Model: S260

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Dennis On: Sat Dec 31, 2011 8:51 am

yes, They are very inpressive boilers,and agree about having to be there to feed the boiler,but with 12 hrs. plus burns its not all that bad,if needed to go away thats what the oil gun is for,just need oil and at the price oil is going for,thats not going to happen when i have 8 tons in the basement. I was kicking the idea of putting a stoker in :idea: ,I dont think it would be that hard,but must likely more expensive than practial, :? but if I could find a under feed stoker cheap,maybe :?: Dennis
Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Dennis On: Thu Feb 16, 2012 3:49 pm

A little update.
I've been using my oil burner almost everyday and loving it, I finally found a use for it (pics. inclosed). Boots nice and dry next morning.

I have also gotten 24 and 27 hour burns with boiler temps. and recover times the same as 12 hr. burns,I've been expermenting since I might need to work out of town.
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Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Phil May On: Thu Feb 16, 2012 5:10 pm

They are a well built unit. They are overrated for btu available. The rating on them is max output with feeding constantly. As long as they are oversized for the load it will work perfect. If you want to buy one mine is for sale. It does not have an oil burner just wood and coal.
Phil May
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 700
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: 700

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: ValterBorges On: Thu Feb 16, 2012 8:34 pm

Denis,
How did you go about reducing the firebox size?
ValterBorges
 
Stove/Furnace Make: AHS
Stove/Furnace Model: S260

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Dennis On: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:21 pm

ValterBorges wrote:Denis,
How did you go about reducing the firebox size?


I placed an 8" block in the front and a 6" block in the back of the firebox then caped the top off with 3" solid blocks to stop air flow. The 16" long block sits on the fire brick 2" above the grates and makes a 13" deep coal bed. At the end of the season the 6 and 8" block are destroyed by the heat of the coal and throw them away.
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Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: ValterBorges On: Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:07 pm

Thx, Dennis.

I wonder if this could be done to an S260 for summer, kind of turning it into an S130.
It would be interesting to see how it interacts with the moving grate.
ValterBorges
 
Stove/Furnace Make: AHS
Stove/Furnace Model: S260

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: cabinover On: Sat Feb 18, 2012 8:20 am

I don't see how you could put blocks into an AA. You'd have to stick them to the burn chamber and that would not help your transfer of heat to the vessel itself. They wouldn't accomplish anything sitting on the ash grate other than raising your coal height in the chamber as far as I can see.

'Twas a good thought though. :D
cabinover
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Hybrid Axeman Anderson 130
Baseburners & Antiques: Sparkle #12
Coal Size/Type: Pea, Buckwheat, Nut
Other Heating: LP Hot air. WA TX for coal use.

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Benjamin On: Mon Dec 15, 2014 11:02 pm

Hello, newbie here looking at changing over to coal with oil backup. I recently bought an old farm house that has an ancient beast of a oil-fired boiler in the cellar. There are two 2-hundred gallon tanks (I think) down there. I haven't moved in yet but will be in a few weeks. I need to replace this boiler. Here's the layout and distribution of the house: approx 1400 sqft with baseboard water radiators on the main level. The second level has multiple rooms totaling about 1300 sqft and each room as a cast iron radiator. My calculations say I need a system that outputs 200k Btu to sufficiently heat the home (with some margin tucked in there).

The current oil boiler looks to have been installed back in the early 70's, outputs 345k Btu and guzzles down 3 gal/hr. Many of the boiler companies I've had walk in to quote me a replacement system can't believe this thing and say it's practically commercial sized. I don't quite understand why this was put in back then, but my calculations seem to agree that it is oversized for this house.

The current system exhausts through a very tall brick chimney (dual flue for a wood burning fireplace on the main floor).

I don't have a good answer to how well the house is insulated since I haven't lived in it yet. This farm house was a foreclosure and I had to buy it as is. But I can't believe it would be too bad going by the looks of it.

I looked at propane and also straight up oil boiler replacements but I really like the idea of having flexibility with my fuel source. I found AHS while researching such systems and am eyeing the WOC55. Coal would be my primary with oil as my backup. But realistically I'd run the oil for a while until I get up to speed on how to use coal properly. I have never had either type of fuel source before so I am trying to read up and learn as fast as I can on these. The WOC55 seems to give me what I need from a system output standpoint but I don't know that much about the system or its reliability, and communication with AHS has been intermittent at best. Can't seem to get specific answers to many question.

For example:
1. What kind of efficiency can I expect to get out of the coal. I understand that it varies with the type of coal I would buy. I live just outside of Baltimore, MD.
2. What kind of efficiency can I expect to get with the backup oil gun if I use this as my automatic switchover backup fuel or even as just my main fuel for the nearterm?
3. Does AHS have reps in Maryland that I can contact? They gave me somebody outside of Philly near where I grew up but I can't believe he would be the person I schedule for installation down here.
4. Does AHS offer a tour of their plant so I can see how to use one of these in person before I commit to their product?
5. Do I have to have my chimney lined with stainless if I use the multifuel boiler systems? I was expecting to get a chimney sweep out here to clean it but lining it could cost a good bit.


Can any of you help me out with these questions or by sharing your general comments and experiences with AHS and these muitifuel boilers? I feel a bit overwhelmed at the moment and I want to make sure I buy a new system that is sized correctly, reliable, and fuel flexible.

Thanks. Sorry this intro post got lengthy. I look forward to your replies.

Ben
Benjamin
 

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Dennis On: Wed Dec 17, 2014 9:49 pm

Hi and welcome Ben,for your questions
#1-yes,all coal will burn differently,but in general all coal is somewhat close in burn characteristics
#2-I have the Reilo oil burner,although i've only ran about 50 gal. thru it,but it really heats the 60 gallons of water rather quickly on the WOC55
#3- I don't believe AHS has their own installers,but if you need a coal boiler installed, someone on the NEPA forum might know and refer a good reliable installer in your area
#4-I went to the AHS showroom in Chambersburg Pa. and saw their line of products.They didn't have any boilers burning coal there
#5-you don't need a liner for your chimney and it would be better to remove it if your going to be burning coal
I've had my WOC55 for 5 yrs. now and havn't had any problems at all with it. I"ve done some tweeking and modifyings on a few things to my likings,but nothing drastic.The boiler is very reliable and built extreamly well.
So,now that we got the WOC55 discused.If I knew what I know now, I would have bought a stoker boiler form the get go.I get 12hr burn times during the colder months and can go longer spring and fall,but i'm not using the total capacity of the boiler.If you have any more questions just ask,and if you want to see my boiler in use,we can make arragements to see it.
Dennis
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: AHS/WOC55-multi-fuel/wood,oil,coal
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite/stove size

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: whistlenut On: Thu Dec 18, 2014 9:30 am

Welcome....and from 3 gallons per hour, anything would be an improvement. I will suggest a stoker as well. 50 years ago I purchased two AA's (130 and a 260) and never went from hand fed to' stoker luxury.'
As this post gains momentum, I will wager that a stoker will be in your future. A few are listed in the 'For Sale' index, and more are available. PLEASE do the research before jumping the gun. A few days won't impede an investment that will last for half a century. Consider location when thinking of a purchase, it could be that the basement may not be the best/easiest spot to locate the heat source.

AHS will gladly show you around and they are very good at explaining themselves, and to give references. They also have other boilers for you to look at, so make an appointment, and read further to be more educated as to what you can tolerate.
whistlenut
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AA130's,260's, AHS130&260's,EFM900,GJ&VanWert
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Franks Boiler,Itasca415,NYer130,Van Wert
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Yellow Flame
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Alaska-4,Keystoker-2,
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Alaska,Gibraltor,Keystone,Vc Vigilant 2
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Van Wert, NYer's, Ford,Jensen.
Coal Size/Type: Rice,Buck,Pea,Nut&Stove
Other Heating: Oil HWBB

Re: AHS Multi-Fuel Boiler.

PostBy: Benjamin On: Thu Dec 18, 2014 11:58 am

Thanks. I will be researching a little while longer. I would prefer a stoker but haven't had much luck finding other supplier models that have the auto switchover to oil as a backup fuel.
Benjamin