Thanks to Dungeon Master I finally got my hands on so bit to play with. It burned in 3 distinctive stages. The flare, then a fairly long period where it burns like charcoal, and finally a very long low heat output period even if I get it a lot of air. When it flairs it burns smokey and produced lots of soot which coated the inside of the stove and stove pipe in the first stage. I kind of liked the smell but I'm not sure about the neighbors. In the second stage the bit kind of melts together into a large mass that I have to break up with the poker after the initial flare up is over. It puts out a fair amount of heat and little smoke durring that stage. In the third stage I find that the fire lingered at a low heat output almost forever. The third stage lasted so long that it was filing the stove up so I couldn't continue to add layers of fresh coal. If I were heating with it in earnest I think I would of had to shake some of the coal in the third stage into the ash pan to make room for a fresh batch. There wasn't as much ash as when I burned antricite and the ash was almost powdery when I shake the grates. I'm glad I got a chance to experience it but it won't be my first choice as an everyday heat source.
I'm letting the stove go out tomorrow. If I need a little heat I'll burn brush and trash to take the chill off. Unless I get my little coal fired hot water heater set up, I think I'm done with coal for the season. Maybe next fall if I can get my hands on some coke I get that figured out. hint hint