Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: LsFarm On: Tue Jan 15, 2008 1:08 am

Yes, logic says that stopping the ashing would make the fire burn through the whole firechamber, I tried that several times. It didn't work. Pete Axeman and the AA serviceman both told me it wouldn't work. What happens when you don't ash is that the fire burns up to the top, not out to the perimeter. When the fire burns up, it eventually burns up into the feed tube then goes out. Leaving behind unburnt coal in the lower portions of the burn chamber. Doesn't make sense but this is what happens. The fire burns hot at the top and the fire won't burn down into the firechamber. So you have to ash agressively to get the fire down near the bottom of the firechamber. then the fire will keep all the coal above burning.

These weird burn characteristics are why it has taken me over two months to get it burning right. It defies logic and defies the burn characteristics I've learned from my other boiler, both handfed and stoker fed, and helping other locals burn coal. I burnt buckwheat coal for awhile to burn a coal with a different ash characteristic. I didn't see much if any difference.

I am burning a mix of coal from Hegins breaker, and Harmony mine. I'll try pure UAE Harmony later, and some of the Summit coal I brought home as well.

I'm finally very impressed with the low coal consumption, and the heat output from the AA 260M.

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: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: LsFarm On: Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:45 am

Hi Bob, there are no specific directions in the 1948, 1950 or 1958 owners 'manuals' that I have copies of... I think AA assumed a lot of installer knowledge..
The directions you stated from the AHS manual make perfect sense. Especially for a larger model like a 260 or 500. AA doesn't address burn time for the inital fire, or btu load, or anything. They just say to add paper, kindling, start the fire, and add some coal. Once the added coal is burning, turn on the auger and it will soon be making heat.. A bit of assumed knowledge and lots of presumptions...

The 130 size firechamber is a much easier size of fire to get fully started and this was part of my confusion, how can the same design work so well for so many and I was having such a problem with mine... ? I was starting to get pretty depressed over it !! :roll:

But the fire has stayed fully lit, making lots of heat , clean ash with some manageable clinkers. This weekend it is supposed to be pretty cold, so it will get a workout!!

Thanks for the PM .

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: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: Steve.N On: Sun Feb 24, 2008 5:34 pm

Hi Greg,

My name is Steve and I have been following this thread as I just bought a used AA 260. How has the boiler behaved since Jan? I was somewhat discuraged after reading all the problems that you had getting it to burn properly and was glad to hear that you had settled it out.
I own a store and warehouse that I now heat with oil and the cost is bankrupting me. I burn some coal at home in a hand fed stove and knew that there was a big savings over oil.
Your signature says 150 to 250 pounds of pea a day, is this just the AA or is that combined? If it is just the AA how much load do you estimate that you have on it as I am trying to get an idea of how expensive this boiler will be to run.
I bought the boiler sight unseen, it is a 1980 manufacture and was only burned around 10 years. When I went to see it there was actually 2 AA 260's and I was told that if I took one I had to take both. Seemed like a deal to me. The boilers have been setting disconnected in a heated dry basement and have not seen fire in at least 15 years.
The plan is to install sometime this summer for next year's heating season, insurance will not allow the boiler to be installed in the main building so the plan is to install it in an adjacent garage that I own and pipe the heat in underground.
I am going to have a lot of questions on burning this guy once it is hooked up and it is comforting to have found the experience here.

Steve.N
Steve.N
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman mkII
Stove/Furnace Model: Axeman Anderson 260 at store

Visit Lehigh Anthracite

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sun Feb 24, 2008 5:56 pm

Hi Steve, I can definitely help you get it up and running correctly, my problem was that as stated in the begining of this thread, I couldn't figure out what the fire was doing/not doing. I finally figured it out, and the fix was pretty easy. Now that I know what was causeing the problem.

I'll be glad to help, my setup is very similar to what you are planning, a remote location for the boiler, underground piping of the hot water to the point of use.

I'm filling my 1500# hopper every 6-7 days, this depends on the weather.. and if I want to let the hopper go all the way empty. I may let the hopper empty tomorrow [I filled it last monday] so I can clean out the area around the auger tube inlet, the fines tend to accumulate, and may eventually interfere with the smooth feeding of the auger... a little maintenance is easier than fixing frozen pipes..

So right now I'm using about 3 tons a month, I'm heating a 40x60' shop [pipes in concrete floor] and a 4100 sqft house with poor sealing, insulation and fair windows.. So I'm spending about $600 for coal, and I'm comfortable.. over the same period with similar temps and weather, my propane bill would be $2400-2800/month at today's propane prices [$2.30/gallon]. and I would have the thermostats set MUCH lower too. [wearing hat and sweater in the house].

I'm sending you a PM,

Take care, welcome to the forum.

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: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: gregolma On: Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:18 am

I start the fire in my AA130 every so often when low coal in the bin causes the tube to run dry. It is no issue what so ever. I put a few handfuls of strips of cardboard in and five or six pieces of wood and soak it with charcoal lighter then I dump a little coal on top. I like to use a Turbo torch to light it and then hit the power and dump more coal on top. Works every time. Nothing else to do.
gregolma
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Axeman Anderson
Stove/Furnace Model: 1980 Anthratube 130

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: LsFarm On: Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:42 am

Yep, that's all it takes to get a fire going, and with the small diameter 130M firepot,[11" diameter] the fire migrates well and fills the whole firepot. But with the much larger 260M firepot, which is 16" in diameter, the fire doesn't like to migrate all the way through the entire firepot. Especially at the base of the fire, on the grate.

Just to give some perspective, I started over a dozen fires in my 260M, and none of the fires migrated to burn all the way through the whole firepot. It didn't make any difference which coal I burnt, or how much much I set the ashing controls, Or how hot I set the water, or how large a btu load I put on the boiler, even with a 35-45 minute burn, the whole firepot did not ignite..

It was only with a manual cleaning of the perimeter of the firepot from below, removing the unburnt and partially burn coal around the perimeter of the base of the firepot, did I make room for the burning central column of to be dropped down on the grate, [smashed down from above with a big steel poker] where it has been burning fully for the last two months.

It is interesting that the AHS manual is MUCH more specific with it's directions on how to get a full fire. AHS says to have a cold house, cold water, and to burn the fire for an hour plus without any ashing to 'establish a full fire'. AA pretty much says start a fire, and flip the switch..and you will have a coal fire in a few minutes... Which didn't work with my AA260. But I now know what to look for, and what to do to establish a full fire.. it's not automatic with the big firepot in the AA260.

All part of the 'learning curve' with a 'new' boiler.

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: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: Coal Jockey On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:47 am

Steve.N wrote:Hi Greg,

My name is Steve and I have been following this thread as I just bought a used AA 260. How has the boiler behaved since Jan? I was somewhat discuraged after reading all the problems that you had getting it to burn properly and was glad to hear that you had settled it out.
I own a store and warehouse that I now heat with oil and the cost is bankrupting me. I burn some coal at home in a hand fed stove and knew that there was a big savings over oil.
Your signature says 150 to 250 pounds of pea a day, is this just the AA or is that combined? If it is just the AA how much load do you estimate that you have on it as I am trying to get an idea of how expensive this boiler will be to run.
I bought the boiler sight unseen, it is a 1980 manufacture and was only burned around 10 years. When I went to see it there was actually 2 AA 260's and I was told that if I took one I had to take both. Seemed like a deal to me. The boilers have been setting disconnected in a heated dry basement and have not seen fire in at least 15 years.
The plan is to install sometime this summer for next year's heating season, insurance will not allow the boiler to be installed in the main building so the plan is to install it in an adjacent garage that I own and pipe the heat in underground.
I am going to have a lot of questions on burning this guy once it is hooked up and it is comforting to have found the experience here.

Steve.N


Hi Steve,
Any chance you'd like to sell the second boiler? ;)

LSFarm,
With these issues resolved, how do you think an AA 260 would work for my pretend 10,000 sq ft building if it was running full bore? Does anyone know if Axeman Anderson has a dealer network - or if they ship to individuals - or whether they even sell to Canada? I'd become a dealer if I knew a little more about the technical aspects of boilers. Everybody and their dog is selling these Outdoor Wood Boilers - literally thousands of them smoking up the countryside and suburbs here...and all for over ten grand. I could easily compete with a similarly priced coal unit and sell them the coal to boot... 8-)
Coal Jockey
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Newmac
Stove/Furnace Model: GAO

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 8:29 am

Axeman will sell the units to anyone that is licensed plumbing/heating contractor IIRC.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: LsFarm On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 10:25 am

Hi CJ, I'm sure that an AA260 would do a fine job heating that 100x100' slab. Providing you install it right, insulated etc. And that you have a source for good coal..
Since the building is a slab on grade build, where will the mechanicals room be?? central, or way off to one side?? Can you install a large coal hopper, and how will you transport the coal and ashes?

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: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: Bob On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 11:48 am

AA sells through dealers/installers when one is available in your area. When I was looking they indicated that they would sell direct to me because there was no dealer/installer in my area.
Bob
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS 130
Coal Size/Type: Pea/Anthracite

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: coal berner On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 12:27 pm

LSFarm,
With these issues resolved, how do you think an AA 260 would work for my pretend 10,000 sq ft building if it was running full bore? Does anyone know if Axeman Anderson has a dealer network - or if they ship to individuals - or whether they even sell to Canada? I'd become a dealer if I knew a little more about the technical aspects of boilers. Everybody and their dog is selling these Outdoor Wood Boilers - literally thousands of them smoking up the countryside and suburbs here...and all for over ten grand. I could easily compete with a similarly priced coal unit and sell them the coal to boot...

I think you would need a AHS 500 It is good for 15.000 Sq ft The 260 is 8.000 sq ft with good insulation aswell for any size unit Check there site out You also might want to contact them about a dealer Program good luck :)

http://www.alternateheatingsystems.com/coalboilers.htm
coal berner
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1986 Electric Furnace Man 520 DF
Stove/Furnace Make: Electric Furnace Man
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 12:32 pm

coal berner wrote:LSFarm,
With these issues resolved, how do you think an AA 260 would work for my pretend 10,000 sq ft building if it was running full bore? Does anyone know if Axeman Anderson has a dealer network - or if they ship to individuals - or whether they even sell to Canada? I'd become a dealer if I knew a little more about the technical aspects of boilers.


Call Pete Axeman @ A-A, he has all the answers.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: coal berner On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 12:46 pm

coaledsweat wrote:
coal berner wrote:LSFarm,
With these issues resolved, how do you think an AA 260 would work for my pretend 10,000 sq ft building if it was running full bore? Does anyone know if Axeman Anderson has a dealer network - or if they ship to individuals - or whether they even sell to Canada? I'd become a dealer if I knew a little more about the technical aspects of boilers.


Call Pete Axeman @ A-A, he has all the answers.
Coaledsweat I did not ask the Qusestion I left the info Coal Jockey is who asked the Qusestion Just Pulled it from one of the post above ;)
coal berner
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1986 Electric Furnace Man 520 DF
Stove/Furnace Make: Electric Furnace Man
Stove/Furnace Model: DF520

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: bullsie On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 2:49 pm

Hello, just found this site. I love Axeman Andersons. Dad put one in in the early 1970's. Its still there. I have moved into the old farm and hope to replace the oil with an axeman anderson - hopefully, this summer.

I use charcoal briquets (sp?) to start the fire. Dad uses firestarters.

One thing about the AA, it is a critter that never varies. In other words, once you have it up and running reliably, the fire box will always look a certain way at a certain time, the auger sounds will be the same. When you see or hear any deviation, you know you have something amiss.

And the colder it gets the better it runs!

Enjoy your axeman!

susan
bullsie
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Axeman-Anderson
Stove/Furnace Model: 130

Re: Axeman Anderson 260M Success.. Finally

PostBy: Steve.N On: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:12 pm

Just an update on my pair of Axeman Anderson's.

We started removing the boilers from their home today. All went smooth until we cut the domestic hot water lines then total flood. Though the lines were valved out to the boiler, one valve was shot with no other way to isolate the water source. Thank god for Shark Bite Fittings, I picked up two 3/4" caps from the local plumbing supply house and jambed them on under a deluge of water, got soaked to the bone.

I thought that both boilers were 1980 models but the one in the rear was built in 1952. I know that the boilers were installed at the same time so I can only surmise that one boiler was purchased used and one new. I know the guy who had the boilers installed and plan to call him out of curiosity.

Today we moved the boilers out and removed the stokers. There was about 30 ft of 2 inch copper plumbing attached so we salvaged that also. The 1980 boiler is beautiful and only shows a little wear on the ash shaker excentric. The 1953 has some crusty rust under the dosmetic hot water coil but I think it is just on the surface. Both boilers are missing thermostats or something as there is a vacant thermowell on each boiler with disconnected wiring.

When I figure out how to do it I will post some photos. The forcast is for 16 inches of snow tonight so stage two of this caper might have to wait until next week. Oh and I was wrong about the three oil tanks, there are four :cry:

Steve
Steve.N
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman mkII
Stove/Furnace Model: Axeman Anderson 260 at store

Visit Lehigh Anthracite