Pacowy wrote:I think zoning a steam system would face major challenges, as would converting the boiler steam to sauna steam.
I kind of like the idea of a stoker stove in the sauna, drawing combustion air from outside the sauna. I don't think direct venting is necessary. Many of the stoves wash air over the top of the combustion chamber - I think you'd need something with a removable top (like many of the Alaskas) or plan to hang the rock container against the side of the body of the stove so the rocks would get hot enough to make steam. With a little practice you'd know how long it needs to run to get up to temp, and the rest of the time it could idle quietly.
I'm seriously doubting my abilities to properly maintain and tune a steam system. I'd probably feel more comfortable with a forced hot water central system providing heat for my entire house. I cant really see converting the entire house heating system over to steam just for the purpose of being able to run a steam room. Plus, your point of converting boiler steam to steam for a steam room also presents challenges. I'm thinking that I may just bite the bullet and get a purpose installed steam generator for the steam room. I just wanted to be able to utilize coal instead of electric power for reasons of economy.
Regarding the sauna: Interesting, you say the Alaskas have a removable top? I'm on Alaska's site right now and checking out the models, but none of the pics show them with the tops off. Did you have a stove model you were thinking about? Perhaps something could be fashioned that allows the combustion flames/temps to directly touch the rocks, a tray or rock cradle of some sorts that would fit over the stove on top. Is this what you were referring to?