Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 4:57 pm

Anyone have any hints/tips on un-jamming a Harman shaker mechanism?
Wouldn't you know it!! Just b4 the coldest few days of the year I got to agressive shaking down my Harman TLC2000 & managed to jam the shaker grates in the full open position!! (The coal bed is staying up out of the ash pan but I can't budge the shaker handle & don't want to force it & possbly break the grates) The fire is still going well & I figured I'll see if I can run it this way for another day, to get through the cold snap. I figure if I cant unjam it, I'll shut it down, clean it out & restart it for the 2nd half of the winter...... but I'd like to wait until Saturday to do so.
What I've done so far:
1. Iv'e looked underneath the grates but can't see any obvious obstructions.
2. Jiggled the handle as hard as I dare to
3. poked blindly up from under the grates
4. Left the ash pan about 1/4 full of ash to help absorb some heat in case the whole burning coal bed falls down into the ash pan
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Dano On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 5:46 pm

hey devil try this its a little daring but I had to do it wait a little bit so that the ashes build up no glowing coals visible reach in with your hand make sure grate are not to hot!! feel between the fingers on the grates you should find the little culprit and pull or poke it out I had to do the same thing and after the grates had a fair amount of ash on them they were luke warm at best good luck (figures right before a cold snap)
Dan
Dano
 
Stove/Furnace Make: harman mk1

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 6:14 pm

Dano wrote:hey devil try this its a little daring but I had to do it wait a little bit so that the ashes build up no glowing coals visible reach in with your hand make sure grate are not to hot!! feel between the fingers on the grates you should find the little culprit and pull or poke it out I had to do the same thing and after the grates had a fair amount of ash on them they were luke warm at best good luck (figures right before a cold snap)
Dan


Thanks for the reply Dan. I'm trying to keep the fire going normaly (through the cold snap ) so right now the coal bed is burning at about 250* (on my magnetic stovepipe thermometer) & hasn't collapsed into the ash pan. I'm not about to stick my hand down there! I figure I'll wait until later tonight & see if whatever is jamming the grates (& it is jammed tight...no play at all) has weakened/dislodged due to the heat , enough so that I can break it loose with the shaker mechanism. (if it is unburnt coal maybe it will burn through or loosen up)
If I still can't budge it I'll just keep feeding it fresh coal (it's burning normaly right now) for another day to get through the cold weather & then shut it down & clean it out.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

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Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:16 pm

I've done that!
You probably went a little too far with the shaker lever. It's either a piece of unburnt coal or a large hard clinker. Depending on which way the grates are turned, it's either in the front or the back of the stove. usually which ever grate is up by the firebox wall. Once the lever jams like that pushing it farther to try to dislodge the jam usually makes it worse.
Get a piece of metal rod, a wire coat hanger or a piece of a tomato "cage" will do, cut a straight piece about 20" long, then bend one end at a 90 degree angle. Remove the ash pan, and probe along the edges of the grates to see if you can find the jam. Then try and dislodge it with the wire. The coat hanger probably won't be rigid enough to do this. If the TLC is anything like my stove, it's difficult to get to the grate edges, but it can be done.
Good Luck!
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: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: rberq On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:28 pm

Dano, you are one brave guy! I don't care if I have to let the fire die, no way would I stick my hand up amid the grates of a live stove no matter how cool they are! I just picture myself dislodging the jam, the grates snap back to horizontal, my hand is trapped between the grate and the firebrick, the ashes and hot coals descend, and then it occurs to me that I should have used the OTHER hand because now I can't reach the shaker lever with my free hand to un-trap myself. I am shuddering just thinking about it. I'm a sissy that way.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:31 pm

rberq wrote:Dano, you are one brave guy! I don't care if I have to let the fire die, no way would I stick my hand up amid the grates of a live stove no matter how cool they are! I just picture myself dislodging the jam, the grates snap back to horizontal, my hand is trapped between the grate and the firebrick, the ashes and hot coals descend, and then it occurs to me that I should have used the OTHER hand because now I can't reach the shaker lever with my free hand to un-trap myself. I am shuddering just thinking about it. I'm a sissy that way.


Sounds like something that would happen to me.
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: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:33 pm

Wood'nCoal wrote:I've done that!
You probably went a little too far with the shaker lever. It's either a piece of unburnt coal or a large hard clinker. Depending on which way the grates are turned, it's either in the front or the back of the stove. usually which ever grate is up by the firebox wall. Once the lever jams like that pushing it farther to try to dislodge the jam usually makes it worse.
Get a piece of metal rod, a wire coat hanger or a piece of a tomato "cage" will do, cut a straight piece about 20" long, then bend one end at a 90 degree angle. Remove the ash pan, and probe along the edges of the grates to see if you can find the jam. Then try and dislodge it with the wire. The coat hanger probably won't be rigid enough to do this. If the TLC is anything like my stove, it's difficult to get to the grate edges, but it can be done.
Good Luck!


Thanks for the good ideas John. Right now I'm not in panic mode as I got almost a feel charge into the stove just b4 the jam happened, mid afternoon & it's running normaly. (My big concern was the the whole fire would suddenly just collapse into the ash pan, so I left a good bed of ash in there to absorb some heat.) I don't know what is actualy holding the coal bed up, as the shaker handle is lodged fully in (towards the back of the stove) & wont budge a millimeter! The stove has been running continuosly since late October so I good cleaning out won't hurt it........Now, if I can only keep it running for another 48 hours till the warm weather hits! (Could be 60* by mid-week)
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:36 pm

You can use the same wire poker to drop some of the ash from between the grates later on if you need to. As I said, I've done the exact same thing with my stove.
The bent wire idea was from Ls Farm. It also works great to loosen up the ash when there are dead areas in the coal bed.
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: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Dano On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 8:44 pm

hey to each their own but usualy the piece that is jambing things is just out of sight and you dont have to stick your hand so far up as to put your hand into a burning fire (that would not be smart) tell you what next time before you shake your stove down when you first open the ash door put your hand on the under side of the grates my guess is that their warm but not real hot as the air cools them as it enters especially if they have a good layer of ash on them devil thats great you can go over 24hrs with out shaking
Dano
 
Stove/Furnace Make: harman mk1

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Devil505 On: Wed Jan 02, 2008 10:57 pm

Wood'nCoal wrote:You can use the same wire poker to drop some of the ash from between the grates later on if you need to. As I said, I've done the exact same thing with my stove.
The bent wire idea was from Ls Farm. It also works great to loosen up the ash when there are dead areas in the coal bed.


I'm leaving the fire as-is tonight,as far as trying to unjam the shaker grates. I will just add coal as needed because it's burning normaly & then tomorrow I will try the shaker mechanism again. If I can't get it to move (at least to the closed posiition so it will support the coal bed) I will try poking around from underneath. I made a tool out of an old paint roller by breaking off the roller mechanism & bending the frame a bit. Should work fine for poking up throught the grates. (Come to think of it, my first coal stove was a Better N Bens model that I ran for 3 years (after the shaker grates froze solid on me) by scraping the ashe from under the grates with a tool) I'll let you know what happens.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: titleist1 On: Thu Jan 03, 2008 1:13 am

I've done the same thing on my Harmon. I just let it burn and by the next shake down I was able to "un-stick" it. I guess the offending chunk burned enough by that time to get broken up by the shaking. About once a year this strategy doesn't work because a fist sized clinker will have formed and there's no breaking those things up! When that happens I usually let it burn out, clean everything up and start again.
titleist1
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman Mag Stoker (old style) one in basement, one in workshop
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III on standby for long power outages
Coal Size/Type: Rice/Anthracite; Nut/Anthracite

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: Devil505 On: Thu Jan 03, 2008 12:15 pm

Eureeka....Life is good again!!! Emptied , cleaned out & restarted the Harman this morning. (pulled out a marble sized clinker that was wedged perfectly between the rear grate & the back of the stove) Mechanism is smooth as silk again & the grates look fine.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Unjamming A Harman Shaker Mechanism??

PostBy: greg white On: Sun Jan 06, 2008 9:00 am

I made the above mentioned little poker stick by installing the 3/16 bent wire in the end of a old axe handle, more rigid.
GW
greg white
 

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