How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 9:43 am

JLF53 wrote:Okay I have both the front glass door and the ash door wide open. I still have a barely 3 or 4 faint flames.



Close the top (glass) door!..All the air must come from below the coal bed for it to work. You are putting out the fire by keeping the glass door open.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 9:47 am

JLF53 wrote:I am going to lay a 2" bed of kingsford and cover it with a thin layer of coal. then light and leave the ash door open until I get the stove pipe at 400 degrees


Charcoal is fine but I find it doesn't burn hot enough to light coal quickly. Throw in some wood scraps & light the coal on top of that. Once you get the hang of it you'll be able to fill the stove in less than an hour. Keep the ash door open ujntil it's full & at the temp you wanty b4 closing it. Stay in the room when the ash door is open.

I'd suggest for your first few fires to start a wood fire & add coal to that. Charcoal takes longer to light coal off of.


In case you missed it, here's what I do:

Here's what works for me:

As far as starting up the coal fire, what I do is just get a good wood fire established (just burning well, way b4 it turns to embers) & then I carefully add a few shovels of coal across the whole fire , making sure flames are still coming up between the coal. (No need to wait for the wood fire to turn to embers...just make sure you don't smother the fire by adding to much coal at a time & make sure you don't overfire your stove by giving it to much air)I play with the ash door to make sure the fire keeps going well & wait a few minutes for each coal layer to ignite b4 I add more coal. When the entire fire is covered with coal (still making sure flames are coming up) I carefully add another layer of coal & watch the stove thermometer. Temp will drop a bit when you add a new layer but as soon as the temp starts to rise again, I add more coal. In very short order you will fill your stove with coal. (to the top of the firebricks) Once filled & at a temp you want....you're done! (I have found that a new fire wants more air than one that has been burning a while so plan on leaving the air inlet open a little more than usual) You'll get the feel for it in no time
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: JLF53 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 2:33 pm

I tried wood yesterday and it smoked so much I did not dare open the top to load coal. What kind of wood do you use?
JLF53
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

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Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Jack Magnum On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:01 pm

Devil,
What size shovel are you using? About how much coal in lbs is that?
Jack
Jack Magnum
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:34 pm

Jack Magnum wrote:Devil,
What size shovel are you using? About how much coal in lbs is that?


Just a hand shovel Jack, from a fireplace coal set.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:39 pm

JLF53 wrote:I tried wood yesterday and it smoked so much I did not dare open the top to load coal. What kind of wood do you use?


If your draft is working, all the smoke should go up the chimney & not back into your house.What kind of chimney do you have & how's your draft?
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: JLF53 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:44 pm

The smoke stayed in the stove, it did not leak into the room, but I did not open thendoor or top load door, as the TIC 2000 is a top loading stove. The smoke from the wood I put in was thick and black and it covered the glass with soot. I let it die down by closing vents.

My flue is the original flue for the house built in 1870 for coal. It is probably 25 to 30 feet over the entry thimble for this stove.

I finally left the bottom vent open full last night and there was flame when I examined it at 10 am this morning, but now it has died completely. I am having trouble getting the coal to light.

How can I check the draft?
JLF53
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:02 pm

JLF53 wrote:The smoke stayed in the stove, it did not leak into the room, but I did not open thendoor or top load door, as the TIC 2000 is a top loading stove.


If you get a good fire going (by opening the bottom (ash) door, you will have a nice strong draft & you should be able to open the glass door or the top load door & not get smoke into the house. (The chimney draft will actually cause any open door to suck air INTO the TLC, not let it out) Keep the glass door closed after you load wood or coal!


JLF53 wrote:How can I check the draft?


Check on threads about "Manometers"........These are device that let you actually measure (quantify) your draft..

I always get my draft going first by putting some newspaper in & burning that first to get warm air going up the chimney.......That will cause the chimney to suck all the smoke out of your stove & up & out of your house.
If you follow the lighting procedures at the beginning of this thread, you should be able to get the coal lit correctly.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: JLF53 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:05 pm

What kind of wood do you use?
JLF53
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:12 pm

JLF53 wrote:What kind of wood do you use?


I just use scraps of 2x4's, shingles, whatever to start my fire in September or October & then, when I have a coal fire going, I'll keep that same fire going all winter! (the joke here is that you only need one match to get you through the winter!! :lol: )
Wood fires blacken your glass window, & they stink up the house. Once you have a coal fire going, the window stays pretty clean & there is no smell whatever!

Again, since we have the same stove, try my technique for starting your coal:

As far as starting up the coal fire, what I do is just get a good wood fire established (just burning well, way b4 it turns to embers) & then I carefully add a few shovels of coal across the whole fire , making sure flames are still coming up between the coal. (No need to wait for the wood fire to turn to embers...just make sure you don't smother the fire by adding to much coal at a time & make sure you don't overfire your stove by giving it to much air)I play with the ash door to make sure the fire keeps going well & wait a few minutes for each coal layer to ignite b4 I add more coal. When the entire fire is covered with coal (still making sure flames are coming up) I carefully add another layer of coal & watch the stove thermometer. Temp will drop a bit when you add a new layer but as soon as the temp starts to rise again, I add more coal. In very short order you will fill your stove with coal. (to the top of the firebricks) Once filled & at a temp you want....you're done! (I have found that a new fire wants more air than one that has been burning a while so plan on leaving the air inlet open a little more than usual) You'll get the feel for it in no time
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: JLF53 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:19 pm

Thanks. Do the shingles create black sooty smoke? Does the smoke come out when you open the top load door to add coal?
JLF53
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:29 pm

JLF53 wrote:Thanks. Do the shingles create black sooty smoke? Does the smoke come out when you open the top load door to add coal?


The wood scraps do create smoke but you won't have wood burning to long anyway if you follow my lighting technique. As far as loading the stove with coal, I suggest that you load it by opening the main glass door & leave the top load door closed. You have much better control of where the coal ends up by loading through the front door anyway! (Another thing I would recommend for the TLC is to goto you stove shop & buy some extra firebrick & add a layer on top of what the TLC come with. You'll have to cut the side bricks (I use a masonry blade on my chop saw) but the back of the stove will take 2 full bricks. This extra firebrick height will make loading easier & let you banks more coal towards the back of the stove for longer burns.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: tvb On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:38 pm

When I had my hand fed Vermont Castings, I would gather the sticks and twigs that fell in the yard all summer and use those. They worked fine. The smoke was minimal and it only took a few minutes to get a decent base going. Once the base was established, I would sloooooowwwwwwwlllllly drizzle coal on top in thin layers. In about 30-40 minutes I usually had a decent fire going.

They were also handy if the coal fire was in danger of dying due to over-shaking or inattention. I would simply dump a few handfuls on top bundled up with a piece of newspaper.
tvb
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: Channing III

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: JLF53 On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:17 pm

Thanks for the advice. I just spoke to the chimney company. They stated that due to the size of my old flue (4' X 12" and 30' long) it will take time to warm up and start drawing. So tomorrow I am going to buy cedar shingles, like Devil 505 uses, and the chimney company states burns hot and with low smoke. I am going to wait until the sun is burning down on my brick house and chimney and then put an electric hairdryer in the baro damper. I am going to open the stove door and place an electric heater with fan in front of the stove. This should start to warm the chimney. Then I will build a hot cedar fire and follow Devil 505's directions. Will let you know how it works.

I will load the coal slowly like tvb recommends.

By the way tvb I live in Flemington, NJ also.
JLF53
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

Re: How to Light a Hand Fired Coal Stove

PostBy: tvb On: Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:20 pm

By the way tvb I live in Flemington, NJ also.


:P

Hello, neighbor!

I'm just north of downtown. Could we possibly be nearby? A short time ago I was outside with my dog and thought I smelled the faint smell of a coal fire starting.

To warm the chimney and get a draft going, try a couple things -

1. If your cleanout is easily accessible, you can light some newspaper in there.

Or, I usually will wad up a couple pages and stick it up into the stovepipe and light it. After a few seconds, you'll hear it whoosh upwards indicating some heat and the establishment of a draft.
Last edited by tvb on Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:34 pm, edited 2 times in total.
tvb
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Alaska
Stove/Furnace Model: Channing III

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