Don't know where to start, figured this is as good as any. I'm an old hand at wood burning, having grew up in a family of sawyers and loggers. I have had both wood burning furnace and free standing wood stoves. Mostly due to age I decided to switch to coal, but don't know anything about it. I live near Oxford Pa, lots of anthracite within a couple hours drive. I have an old house, I think it was already here when the Pilgrims landed. I currently use a fireplace insert on one end and supplement that with a propane heater on the other. The wood burner carries about 80% of the load.
I just bought a Glacier Bay wood/coal insert to replace the current one. It is 70's technology, would something like a used Harman Mark 2 use a lot less coal than the GB insert? Second question is about buying and storing coal. I will buy a truck load, maybe two before prices go back up. If I continue to burn wood early/late season for a night time or early morning fire and use coal when daytime temps stay in the mid 50's or colder, 50 ton will probably last longer than I will. I guess I should buy nut coal??? So where should I buy the coal for best value? Mt Carmel, Tamaqua, Reading, somewhere else? Anyone have a phone number? And what sort of structure do I need to store it? 25 or 50 ton will last a long time, I don't want it spreading out and disappearing into the ground. I can use my front end loader to bring it to the house a bucket at a time. And what about the dust? My grandsons will be helping with the stove, I don't want them breathing that stuff. Lots of questions, I know. Any help greatly appreciated.