Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Rick 386 On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:03 pm

Pacowy wrote:Not sure what Rick is blah-bering about here.

Mike



Mike,

I was just jabbing Rob a little, having a little fun. :box: It was getting late........

I was fortunate enough to move into a place with the AA 260. My nephew moved into a place similar to ours that has an EFM 520 DF.

I like them both. Both are fine running units. Now if I was going to have to purchase one for my own use, after having been on here for quite a while, I'd really have to do some calculating and pricing and whatever else is needed before I would purchase a coal fired appliance. I know what works for me and I see what works for my nephew. And like others, I would probably be asking a lot of questions before plunking down the hard earned cash. Manufacturer's claims, printed documents, projections, etc. mean nothing to me. Let me talk to someone who already has what I want and has some experience using what I want. Then I can make an informed decision and find someone to purchase from or install it for me.



Rick
Rick 386
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AA 260 heating both sides of twin farmhouse
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: LL Hyfire II w/ coaltrol in garage
Coal Size/Type: Pea in AA 260, Rice in LL Hyfire II
Other Heating: Gas fired infared at work

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Rob R. On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:15 pm

coalnewbie wrote:Blah, blah, blah. Forget water as a heat transfer method buy AnthraKings pocket the $20,000.


Forced hot air is a great option, especially when preceded by the old saying "pick whatever blows your skirt up". :D (sorry I just couldn't help myself). It depends what works well with what is already there, and what you are most comfortable with.

The mention of installed cost is an interesting point...as you mentioned, it can vary widely depending on the situation. Not every house has a big enough basement for the bigger boilers, not every house has an outside basement entrance, not every house has enough headroom for duct-work, etc. Like Sting always says, "it depends".
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: whistlenut On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:17 pm

Remember guys, this is only a coal forum. There are dozens of boilers that work very well, and aren't even mentioned here. Sure, cost DOES matter, and even though some might want more BTU's, that may not be possible on some budgets.

It is like the Ford, Chevy, Dodge, Toyota, Nissan thing.....if it keeps the water hot, the home comfortable, and is affordable, then you are better off than most. Tell Arnie that a Van Wert is a lesser machine than an EFM!!!! I chose to evaluate before shoving both feet in my mouth, so take that any way you want. Sometimes it is better to shut-up rather than broadcast what many may already suspect.

If you lived in the Soviet Union, probably it would not matter what the hell you kept warm with, as long as you did not have to live in a spruce thicket to survive. No TeePee ever had an EFM or any other coal burner, and they were still were pretty healthy people.

Inclined stokers have a shorter 'no power burn life', but that is a remedy that can easily be overcome. I've seen a home-made coal stove in Ravine, PA that will blow away even the most pessimistic......so brand loyalty is wonderful, but respect the 'other guys' too. I've burned in a lot of different units, but there are still many I'd like to have and try out. There is some history in those PA hills, that hopefully will never die......not as long as you guys keep sharing.

Having had AA's that remain untouched for twenty years except for routine gasket and lubing requirements says a great deal also......however I did have to double up the 260's to stay warm on those places without a roof......still pulled .04 on the baro as long as the chimney was 30 feet tall.......

For all you nay-sayers, how about a six one bedroom apartment buildings in Northern NE heated and hot water with an AA130 in each.....using about 90 lbs a day in the cold weather. I had to go see it to believe it myself.

Before we get into " I've got more draggin', that you have hangin'" posts, continue to learn as you burn and PLEASE say "Thank You" to the fine folks who dig it for us, process it, and allow us to utilize it to keep our homes and businesses warm affordably. One last comment from your pets who LOVE the EXTRA warm sports in the house...Thanks for choosing coal from the fuzzy guys also. I wonder if Scotty's Gerbel has other warm spots........guess I'll call him in a few minutes......

AA's have a shelf underneath...hmmmmm, no such place on an EFM........is there an alternative location in Malta? :eek2: :rofl: :funny: :secret: :rambo3:
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

Visit Lehigh Anthracite

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Rob R. On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:29 pm

whistlenut wrote:Tell Arnie that a Van Wert is a lesser machine than an EFM!!!!


Less adjustable maybe, but they are a powerhouse boiler. Rugged, simple, and LOTS of btu's.
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Pacowy On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:53 pm

Rick 386 wrote: I was just jabbing Rob a little, having a little fun. :box: It was getting late........


Hey, I just had to stand up for my EFM bro's. Interesting perspective you have for comparing EFM vs. AA - would like to hear more of your thoughts/observations on that. I've had plenty of experience with EFM's but pretty much 0 with AA's.

Mike
Pacowy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: H.B. Smith 350 Mills boiler/EFM 85R stoker
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/anthracite

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Rob R. On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:25 pm

Rick 386 wrote: I would probably be asking a lot of questions before plunking down the hard earned cash. Manufacturer's claims, printed documents, projections, etc. mean nothing to me. Let me talk to someone who already has what I want and has some experience using what I want. Then I can make an informed decision and find someone to purchase from or install it for me.


It is always nice to talk to someone that has direct experience burning coal in the unit you are considering...especially if they have nothing to gain or lose by your decision.

:idea: Hopefully the seller and installer burn coal themselves, and understand the unique parts of heating with solid fuel.
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: oliver power On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:33 pm

Not being in the HAVAC business, I have to say I'm very happy with my entire hydronic heating system. I bought books; and read them over and over. I designed my entire heating system to match the heat load. Then added another 15% to the radiation (recommended in book). Then rounded up when buying radiation. Then hired a HAVAC friend of mine to help with the install. My system is like a perfect match for my house. It pays to do the home work. It was an after thought to put a bigger central boiler in it's own boiler shack/house, and heat everything from one central place. I think that's how I'd do it if I were to do it over. Hind site is always 20/20. Oliver
oliver power
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: KEYSTOKER Kaa-2
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93 & 30-95, Vigilant (pre-Vigilant-II)
Baseburners & Antiques: MANY (Mostly when burning wood)
Stove/Furnace Make: HITZER / KEYSTOKER
Stove/Furnace Model: 50-93 & 30-95 , Kaa-2

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: steamup On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:41 pm

I did not have a feel for coal until I started burning it myself. My only experience with it prior was as a summer helper boy to a HVAC mechanic who had me help him clean a few old gravity style stoker coal furnaces. Never got to see one operate.

Now that I have had more experience, the dots have connected and the light bulb came on. :idea:

Coal is totally different that any other fuel. It doesn't have the problems other fuels have when you oversize the boiler a bit. A coal boiler can idle along with minimal load if properly set up. Many boilers have fuel feed adjustments that turn down firing rate.

The dead men knew that and never wanted their customer to come up short. Also, they didn't have fancy computers and engineering data to allow them to calculate to the tenth of a btu!

The real problems occurred when those coal boilers were converted to push button fuel or replaced with a boiler of the same size that fired a different fuel.

The approach to applying a coal boiler to a heating sytem needs to be slightly more "old school" than todays hot shot condensing technology.

A little bigger coal boiler won't bother you. A little too small coal boiler will frustrate the hell out of you.
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Scottscoaled On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:11 pm

whistlenut wrote:Remember guys, this is only a coal forum. There are dozens of boilers that work very well, and aren't even mentioned here. Sure, cost DOES matter, and even though some might want more BTU's, that may not be possible on some budgets.

It is like the Ford, Chevy, Dodge, Toyota, Nissan thing.....if it keeps the water hot, the home comfortable, and is affordable, then you are better off than most. Tell Arnie that a Van Wert is a lesser machine than an EFM!!!! I chose to evaluate before shoving both feet in my mouth, so take that any way you want. Sometimes it is better to shut-up rather than broadcast what many may already suspect.

If you lived in the Soviet Union, probably it would not matter what the hell you kept warm with, as long as you did not have to live in a spruce thicket to survive. No TeePee ever had an EFM or any other coal burner, and they were still were pretty healthy people.

Inclined stokers have a shorter 'no power burn life', but that is a remedy that can easily be overcome. I've seen a home-made coal stove in Ravine, PA that will blow away even the most pessimistic......so brand loyalty is wonderful, but respect the 'other guys' too. I've burned in a lot of different units, but there are still many I'd like to have and try out. There is some history in those PA hills, that hopefully will never die......not as long as you guys keep sharing.

Having had AA's that remain untouched for twenty years except for routine gasket and lubing requirements says a great deal also......however I did have to double up the 260's to stay warm on those places without a roof......still pulled .04 on the baro as long as the chimney was 30 feet tall.......

For all you nay-sayers, how about a six one bedroom apartment buildings in Northern NE heated and hot water with an AA130 in each.....using about 90 lbs a day in the cold weather. I had to go see it to believe it myself.

Before we get into " I've got more draggin', that you have hangin'" posts, continue to learn as you burn and PLEASE say "Thank You" to the fine folks who dig it for us, process it, and allow us to utilize it to keep our homes and businesses warm affordably. One last comment from your pets who LOVE the EXTRA warm sports in the house...Thanks for choosing coal from the fuzzy guys also. I wonder if Scotty's Gerbel has other warm spots........guess I'll call him in a few minutes......

AA's have a shelf underneath...hmmmmm, no such place on an EFM........is there an alternative location in Malta? :eek2: :rofl: :funny: :secret: :rambo3:

I for one know that the shelf is on the top of the EFM's, arm height. And its sort of insulting that you call my Gerbel. Sick man. Talk about dragging stuff and in the same breath you talk about "bull Gerbels". Sick. Right now my dilemma is choosing between the DF520 already set up in the barn or going with a DF Van Wert 600. Hard not to notice their attributes after setting up a couple. Smaller footprint, 140K, 87% efficient, right up there with the AA130's. And self cleaning to boot. In a Duel fuel. About this learning curve you keep talking about. While you have had many years to amass your knowledge, some of us have been force fed. Some have learned by the "hard knocks". I put my boiler in the barn. Talked to the wrong people about the pex install. Now I pay. From 4 tons the first year to 10 tons this year. I heard that coal was dirty and didn't want it in the house. I know much more now and the boiler is going in the house. Getting the DF model clinched it
Scottscoaled
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520x3, 700 Van Wert 800
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: EFM 150, Keystoker 150
Coal Size/Type: Lots of buck

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: Rob R. On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 8:48 pm

Well Scott, you certainly did a good job of getting everyone out of the coal bin and ready to voice their opinions. Live and learn, lots of people do the same thing and install the boiler in an outbuilding due to fear of gasses, explosions, dust, etc. Set that VA600 up in your house and you will never look back.

steamup wrote:The real problems occurred when those coal boilers were converted to push button fuel or replaced with a boiler of the same size that fired a different fuel.


I agree. A stoker boiler is very different from its oil and gas fired cousins....slower to ramp up, slower to ramp down, and the big difference...even when you are not stoking, you are still burning coal and generating btu's. The boilers were designed to have sufficient thermal mass to absorb the heat generated after a heat call...if you swap in an oil or gas boiler with 1/4 the thermal mass and the same btu input, it will short cycle horribly and burn a lot of fuel.
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: whistlenut On: Fri Feb 01, 2013 8:52 pm

WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I rated a double post!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Is this like your Proctologist who uses TWO fingers so he has a second opinion from one visit???????????????????

Pick on AA's and it will cost you!!!!! I have a 130 up on top of my truck rack and 4 people asked me what it was today...I told them I was retrofitting it for the summer Fair Circuit...a Pop Corn Maker that can make 130 bushels of popped corn in a day, while using only three cans of Sterno!!..99.99% efficient!

I was hoping Scotty would correct my spelling...I think Gerbil has an 'eye' before the 'L'. Fortunately neither of us knew the correct spelling, OR I WOULD have to wonder about the boy from Malta.....

Scotty, I need to ask you about a boiler you used to burn wood in...back in the day. Triple pass, split zone, tube boiler...must be about 300K...I was thinking about stuffing a couple stokers in a new base and sparking it up.
I know one thing for sure, I STRONGLY dislike the damned bases on the 520 series...20 years old and they SUCK!!! Not that the AA's are any better, but I've shared too much skin with those poorly designed rigs.....and while I'm at it,
the Fitsgibbon boilers are more user friendly than the EFM models....AND a cleanout in the back of a 520 would be essential for easy cleaning.......AND rails to remove/access the stoker...finger smashing SOAB's!!!!!!
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:18 pm

On my way home from Pa with my AA260 in the bed of my pickup, at a fuel stop, a guy wandered over and looked and looked at the AA, finally he asked:
Is that a Peanut Roaster ??? LOL..

Yeah, the bases on the boilers are very basic, and certainly could stand some improvements.

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

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: NoSmoke On: Sun Feb 03, 2013 7:05 am

Rob R. wrote:
NoSmoke wrote:I think as society with a diminishing energy supply, it is best if we use logic to heat our homes instead of sheer size.


Aren't you the guy with an 800 square foot kitchen at 90+ degrees? :lol: :P

All jokes aside...


It is not really a joke because it is true, but here is the thing; while I am getting enough btu's in my kitchen, what I am not doing is putting that heat into the bedrooms, and that is why I need a better distribution system. There are multiple ways to do that, and pros and cons to those ways, but I sometimes wonder if those people that are having a difficult time with boiler output are really having distribution problems and not boiler output problems. Another whole aspect is heat retention problems.

For example; around here a common problem is old farmhouse that are drafty with limited insulation, and so to save on heating costs people go out and buy an outside wood boiler. What they are doing is getting a massive boiler to over-compensate for heat, when what they really should do is, instead of spending $10,000 to $12,000 on an outside boiler, is to use that same amount of money to put in insulation, better windows and doors, and seal up the cracks in the foundation. In other words retain they heat they make and thus reduce their BTU requirement rather then just pound a pile of BTU's into the home because it is cheap to do so.

My house is a totally different scenario. It is well insulated and incredibly tight, but where I am failing is using two completely different methods to heat my home; hot air from a hand fed stove to heat one part of it, and liquid radiant floor to heat the other. I am convinced that for the best results I need to apply radiant floor heating throughout my home, and use the thermal dynamics of water, and the ease of pumping it evenly across my entire home, to get the comfort level and efficiency that I need.

Now in that case, what boiler I use to heat the water is almost immaterial. Yes my house still needs X-amount of btu's to keep it warm, but the engineered part of it is what will make it efficient. The sensors in the concrete slab telling the computer the amount of heat I am losing, the temp sensor outside adjusting every minute what the water temperature should be flowing through my slab, and the temp sensor on the return lines telling the metering valve what it needs to inject into the system to keep the infusion of heat to the absolute minimum. All I need to do is provide hot water to that main loop and it does not matter if it comes from my propane boiler, or a coal boiler, or even solar panels...as long as that main loop is fed hot water (100-150 degrees) it will work; the rest of my system does the rest...efficiently.

With the advent of numerous radiant floor choices, radiant floor heat can be applied to almost any dwelling, from over-laying existing concrete to retrofitting under wood floors, and is probably one of the most efficient choices out there. So this is a choice that homeowners have, but it is a choice a lot of homeowners do not want to do. And I don't blame them; it would be inconvenient, obtrusive, messy and most importantly expensive, and inevitably they ask, "Why can't we just use the distribution system we already have", whether it be fin and tube, or forced hot air. So the heating tech is forced to size a boiler for an inefficient distribution system. It is certainly easy, just over-compensate of the boiler and the home will be warm, but it is not the most efficient way. But I don't blame the tech who sized it; his hands are tied. And I do not blame the home owner; its expensive to go with the most efficient system. But I think the majority of the time, the boiler is not actually undersized, it is just tied in to an inferior distribution system system that the homeowner is not willing to (understandably) change.

My house is an example of this; my junk Vogelzang puts out 24 million btu's for every to of coal I put through it, yet my bedrooms are so cold that the propane boiler kicks on during the night. It produces enough btu's, it just fails to distribute that heat adequately, but an engineered radiant floor heating system will take care of that, and I am in the process of doing just that.

(Great topic by the way)
NoSmoke
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: New Yoker WC90
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vogelzang Pot Bellied Stove
Coal Size/Type: Stove/Nut/Pea Anthracite
Other Heating: Munchkin LP Boiler (Back-up)

Re: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: whistlenut On: Sun Feb 03, 2013 10:19 am

I am happy to see the interest in Scott's comments. We have all learned a great deal thanks to Richard and the fine folks who 'share' their experiences on this forum.
I will have some pics coming of current projects and one that involves a Van Wert 4000, 100 lb stoker......that the 'Greeniacks' are trying to convert to a pellet burner.
I am only a by-stander on this project, however I may be asked a question or two. I think the 'smilee' WTF needs a hyper-model for this one.

Oh, I can assure everyone that no animals were harmed in this post about 'friends of members' in Malta, NY.
Perhaps Scott's current boiler project will get a few pics posted soon. I think he is warming to Van Wert.
No matter what the source, it's all about making BTU's, that satisfy demand.........winter is NOT over! :idea: :shock: :!:
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: Scottscoaled boiler sizing method

PostBy: lsayre On: Sun Feb 03, 2013 10:34 am

I kinda like Van Wert Green myself. A VA 600 would likely do the job nicely for me. No current need for it of course due to my AHS S130, but then it's not green.
lsayre
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS S130 Coal Gun
Coal Size/Type: Stockton Anthracite Pea
Other Heating: Resistance Boiler (13.5 KW)

Visit Lehigh Anthracite