Saving A Dying Fire

Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:20 am

General opinion is that if the fire is not burning all across the coal bed, the fire is on the way out and the stove must be emptied and restarted. I have had this happen several times. Once the area gets too small, not much can be done.

This morning I had fire in 2/3 of the coal bed. I carefully added a layer of coal to the burning area and gave it plenty of air. I later added more coal. Once the fire was hot, I shook it down thoroughly and then gently scooped out the ashes in the dead section of the stove with a small shovel through the loading door. The burning section held together. Then I gently pushed some of the burning coal from the top of the bed over to the empty area. I added a little fresh coal and left it alone. Since then I have been able to fill the stove and it's cooking along. If the burning area is really small I have dug down to the grate next to the burning area and added charcoal (not Matchlight) and brought the stove back, but usually it won't last more then 1 or 2 hours.
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: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Dano On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 8:46 pm

wood'ncoal i have a mk I as well this is my third season with it i love it now but i have had problems with bad coal in the beggining and have been so determined not to dump the fire i brought back a fire that was a little more than have out once only to have it go completly out 10hrs later now i use blachak coal wich isn't as good as the deep mined i keep hearing about but i consistantly get 12 to 14 hr burns at good temps 200* on flue and 500* on side of stove i use nut with a little pea on the top
Dano
 
Stove/Furnace Make: harman mk1

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:05 pm

Dano wrote:wood'ncoal i have a mk I as well this is my third season with it i love it now but i have had problems with bad coal in the beggining and have been so determined not to dump the fire i brought back a fire that was a little more than have out once only to have it go completly out 10hrs later now i use blachak coal wich isn't as good as the deep mined i keep hearing about but i consistantly get 12 to 14 hr burns at good temps 200* on flue and 500* on side of stove i use nut with a little pea on the top


Hi Dano,
I realize all the problems with ash and decreased burn times that I have been having are due to the coal I've been using. It's my intention to get the deep-mined coal at some point. Coalberner is waiting for me to make the trip.
If the bed is more than 1/3 out, the chances of saving it are very low. By late afternoon the fire was very low, I ended up restarting it. The problem is all the ash this coal creates, the coal doesn't burn as long and the ash blocks the air flow.
I've used Blaschak, it's very good as strip coal goes, the coal I'm burning now is from somewhere around Tamaqua, PA (strip-mined).
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

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Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:13 pm

Wood'nCoal wrote:General opinion is that if the fire is not burning all across the coal bed, the fire is on the way out and the stove must be emptied and restarted. I have had this happen several times. Once the area gets too small, not much can be done.

This morning I had fire in 2/3 of the coal bed. I carefully added a layer of coal to the burning area and gave it plenty of air. I later added more coal. Once the fire was hot, I shook it down thoroughly and then gently scooped out the ashes in the dead section of the stove with a small shovel through the loading door. The burning section held together. Then I gently pushed some of the burning coal from the top of the bed over to the empty area. I added a little fresh coal and left it alone. Since then I have been able to fill the stove and it's cooking along. If the burning area is really small I have dug down to the grate next to the burning area and added charcoal (not Matchlight) and brought the stove back, but usually it won't last more then 1 or 2 hours.


Been there many time (trying to save a fire) but I wouldn't do this....."Then I gently pushed some of the burning coal from the top of the bed over to the empty area.".......Just add fresh coal to the hole you have created & leave the fire alone. The burning coals will eventualy ignite the new coal & fill it in just fine. Always works for me!
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Dano On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:16 pm

i use bagged blaschak and it can vary from bag to bag sometimes i get lots of ash (empty tray twice a day) and sometimes just a little ash yes it is frustrating when you come home to a fire that is very low and a time consuming pain in the a** to nurse it back or dump it and start over i to would like to take a trip down and get some of that good stuff
Dano
 
Stove/Furnace Make: harman mk1

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:22 pm

Devil5052 wrote:
Wood'nCoal wrote:General opinion is that if the fire is not burning all across the coal bed, the fire is on the way out and the stove must be emptied and restarted. I have had this happen several times. Once the area gets too small, not much can be done.

This morning I had fire in 2/3 of the coal bed. I carefully added a layer of coal to the burning area and gave it plenty of air. I later added more coal. Once the fire was hot, I shook it down thoroughly and then gently scooped out the ashes in the dead section of the stove with a small shovel through the loading door. The burning section held together. Then I gently pushed some of the burning coal from the top of the bed over to the empty area. I added a little fresh coal and left it alone. Since then I have been able to fill the stove and it's cooking along. If the burning area is really small I have dug down to the grate next to the burning area and added charcoal (not Matchlight) and brought the stove back, but usually it won't last more then 1 or 2 hours.


Been there many time (trying to save a fire) but I wouldn't do this....."Then I gently pushed some of the burning coal from the top of the bed over to the empty area.".......Just add fresh coal to the hole you have created & leave the fire alone. The burning coals will eventualy ignite the new coal & fill it in just fine. Always works for me!


I thought of doing that, but I was able to skim coal that had just ignited off the top of the bed, Since coal burns from the bottom up (as well as across) I figured this would work out better.
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: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:23 pm

One thing that is a given when trying to save a dying fire......Plan on spending quite a bit of time at it! (There is no way I have found to rush the fire along. The most certain way there is to kill it dead is to try to rush things!
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:25 pm

Dano wrote:i use bagged blaschak and it can vary from bag to bag sometimes i get lots of ash (empty tray twice a day) and sometimes just a little ash yes it is frustrating when you come home to a fire that is very low and a time consuming pain in the a** to nurse it back or dump it and start over i to would like to take a trip down and get some of that good stuff


The quality always varies. Depends on where it's mined. One dealer I bought from last year was good, this year-no good. I burned Reading with good results, others say it's really bad. The only solution is the "good stuff". And it costs less too!
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: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:27 pm

Devil5052 wrote:One thing that is a given when trying to save a dying fire......Plan on spending quite a bit of time at it! (There is no way I have found to rush the fire along. The most certain way there is to kill it dead is to try to rush things!


If the fire is too low, it's easier for me to just dump it and start over. With charcoal I can get it up rather quickly. I remember the hours with the stove when I first got it trying to get it going, Then I found this forum.
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: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:27 pm

I thought of doing that, but I was able to skim coal that had just ignited off the top of the bed, Since coal burns from the bottom up (as well as across) I figured this would work out better.

I hear you but have always found the less I mess around with the fire the better my chances are of saving it. ( burning coal will ignite fresh coal regardless of it being on top, beside, next too...whatever)
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:38 pm

The worst thing you can do is poke into or start digging into the fire.
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: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Mastiffman On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:04 pm

I almost lost the fire this morning.
Came down and opened the vent a turn and it came right back to life.
Here is where I usually shake it down, but today I forgot, and just added more coal.
At about 11 this morning I noticed my back wasn't warm, and the room was down to 72 from the low 80s.
The whole middle of the fire was dead, all ash. I had about a fist worth of glowing coal off to either side. I opened the bottom door for air. 15 minutes later I opened the top and scooped the ash out of the middle, and as it slowly came to life I'd spread the glowing pile slightly and drop and tiny bit of fresh coal on top by hand. I had the bottom door open for over an hour!
It took me until 2:00 this afternoon to get it going good again! - LOL
It would have been much faster to dump and restart, but after reading the whole "one match" thing I want to keep this fire going until Spring.
It's a sickness I tell ya!
Mastiffman
 

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:14 pm

Mastiffman wrote:I almost lost the fire this morning.
Came down and opened the vent a turn and it came right back to life.
Here is where I usually shake it down, but today I forgot, and just added more coal.
At about 11 this morning I noticed my back wasn't warm, and the room was down to 72 from the low 80s.
The whole middle of the fire was dead, all ash. I had about a fist worth of glowing coal off to either side. I opened the bottom door for air. 15 minutes later I opened the top and scooped the ash out of the middle, and as it slowly came to life I'd spread the glowing pile slightly and drop and tiny bit of fresh coal on top by hand. I had the bottom door open for over an hour!
It took me until 2:00 this afternoon to get it going good again! - LOL
It would have been much faster to dump and restart, but after reading the whole "one match" thing I want to keep this fire going until Spring.
It's a sickness I tell ya!


A nobel effort, I might say.
I gave up on keeping the stove lit continuously after the first week.
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: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: coal berner On: Thu Dec 06, 2007 5:13 am

Wood'nCoal wrote:
Dano wrote:wood'ncoal i have a mk I as well this is my third season with it i love it now but i have had problems with bad coal in the beggining and have been so determined not to dump the fire i brought back a fire that was a little more than have out once only to have it go completly out 10hrs later now i use blachak coal wich isn't as good as the deep mined i keep hearing about but i consistantly get 12 to 14 hr burns at good temps 200* on flue and 500* on side of stove i use nut with a little pea on the top


Hi Dano,
I realize all the problems with ash and decreased burn times that I have been having are due to the coal I've been using. It's my intention to get the deep-mined coal at some point. Coalberner is waiting for me to make the trip.
If the bed is more than 1/3 out, the chances of saving it are very low. By late afternoon the fire was very low, I ended up restarting it. The problem is all the ash this coal creates, the coal doesn't burn as long and the ash blocks the air flow.
I've used Blaschak, it's very good as strip coal goes, the coal I'm burning now is from somewhere around Tamaqua, PA (strip-mined).

That would be south Tamaqua coal pockets inc. it is all stripping from all over the place they are 10 miles up the road from me ;)
coal berner
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1986 Electric Furnace Man 520 DF
Stove/Furnace Make: Electric Furnace Man
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520

Re: Saving A Dying Fire

PostBy: coal berner On: Thu Dec 06, 2007 5:15 am

Mastiffman wrote:I almost lost the fire this morning.
Came down and opened the vent a turn and it came right back to life.
Here is where I usually shake it down, but today I forgot, and just added more coal.
At about 11 this morning I noticed my back wasn't warm, and the room was down to 72 from the low 80s.
The whole middle of the fire was dead, all ash. I had about a fist worth of glowing coal off to either side. I opened the bottom door for air. 15 minutes later I opened the top and scooped the ash out of the middle, and as it slowly came to life I'd spread the glowing pile slightly and drop and tiny bit of fresh coal on top by hand. I had the bottom door open for over an hour!
It took me until 2:00 this afternoon to get it going good again! - LOL
It would have been much faster to dump and restart, but after reading the whole "one match" thing I want to keep this fire going until Spring.
It's a sickness I tell ya!
How do you like the new coal is better then the last stuff I bet it is a little hotter :lol:
coal berner
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1986 Electric Furnace Man 520 DF
Stove/Furnace Make: Electric Furnace Man
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520

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