Mark III or SF-250

Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: hamiltow On: Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:40 pm

Hello,

It looks like I'm going to have to go new, since the used Mark II seller you guys found on craigslist doesn't answer, or return messages, etc. Whatever, I'll get new and not have any worries.

Anyway, I've decided on either the Mark III or SF-250. I'm looking for feedback on what peoples experiences are. I'm concerned that the SF-250 just seems TOO darn BIG. I'm not sure how low you can burn the thing. It looks like such a beast, but I like the heat exchanger attachment option, which isn't an option for the mark III without some creative metal work. My house is about 2300 square feet. I'm in northeast VT. I have a cathedral "great room" living room, and an entrance way that would benefit from the heat exchanger piped to those areas. The stove will be in the basement, with the heat being directed up the stairway.

Has anyone had luck incorporating their existing hot air ductwork "propane hot air currently in use".

Lots of questions.

Thanks,

Bill.
hamiltow
 
Stove/Furnace Make: TBD
Stove/Furnace Model: TBD

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: coalkirk On: Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:38 pm

Bill,

A stove is a space heater, not a house heater. If you want to heat 2300 sq. ft. you should get a coal furnace or a coal boiler. The only way a stove will work well is if your floor plan is very open.
coalkirk
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF3000
Coal Size/Type: antrhcite/rice coal

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: LsFarm On: Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:32 pm

Hi Bill, welcome to the forum.. Coalkirks comment is right on the money... If you want to completely replace the propane furnace, you need a boiler or furnace... If you read through the forums, you will find a pretty common question or concern or subject is moving the heat around the house to get even heat.

My suggestion would be to get a boiler... you can locate it where is is most convenient to get coal to it, and ashes from it. and hooked to the chimney. You use pipes to get the hot water to a water-to-air heat exchanger, that goes in your hot air ducting, transfering the heat into your current duct system.

The ability of a boiler to absorb and retain heat in the hot water makes keeping an even heat easier than with a furnace, and an added benifit is you can heat your domestic hot water with the boiler.

You will be spending a lot of money for a SF250, so it isn't too much more to really do the coal heating process the very best way, with a boiler.

Hope this helps.. 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

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Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: xackley On: Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:51 pm

I have my Leisure Line Pocono in my basement. I use my oil fired furnace blow to move the air. It is working very well, keeping the house at 70*. I have not fired up the Oil except a 2 minute test about once a week.

But I built a Jacket for the stove, which basicly made it work like a furnace. I have a limit switch positioned so it collects the heat, so when it is warmer and the stove surface is around 200*, the fan will turn on for about a minute, then off for a few minutes. When the stove heats up above 350* the fan runs continous.

The bottom of the jacket is sucking air from the basement, basement temps fluctuate between 60 to 67, depending on the burn weather. I have 3 registers that feed the basement from the living area, 7 registers piped for heat. So the heat from the stove gets sucked into the Oil Furnaces cold air return, there is a damper to regulate how much air comes off the stove, and the cold air return from the room.
The coal trol thermostat, combined with the air movement system keeps all the living area mostly at 70*. Sometime dipping to 69, sometime up to 71.

I wouldn't think that a hand fire stove will work very well, but every house is different, and you may get lucky and have a natural air flow that will carry the heat where you want it.

Edit: with the coal stove the register temps are not like the 100* you might expect from the propane furnace. The temps are between 80 and 87 at the registers, but as the air movement is fairly slow and fairly constant, the house feels warmer, on reason is that the furnace isn't blasting, cooling, blasting,... like my oil fired furnace.
xackley
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pocono

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: Razzler On: Mon Jan 28, 2008 11:55 pm

...[quote=]I have a 2400sqft ranch house and keep it at 71*. With a harman SF250 in the basement, with a heat collector on it that i ran into the centroal ac duct work. I run the fan 24/7 so that it blows the heat through out the house, not the best way, doo to the fact that the registers are in the ceiling but it moves some heat. I put a hilkoil in and hooked it in to my EFM boiler but couldn't keep the water temp up much past 140* for a domestic hot water tank that would be fine, but not if you want to try to heat the house. So i designed my owne ciol, the hiokoil was 57" long and the one i made was 120" and it still wasn't anuff. I could get the water to 170* but couldn't maintain it to long. Now i install the 57" ciol in as well it was a tite fit but i got it in there and hooked it in sequel for total of 15ft. Now i can heat the hole house and the domestic hot water as well i can maintain between 160* and 180* the only time the oil burner will kickin if there are back to back showers (with three women in the house :eek2:)that uses alot of hot water and then it will only run for 3 minutes or so. Harman makes a great stove. I have no complaints at all.[/quote]

If i had to do it over i think i would look hard at the SF260 boiler. As Coalkirk and Lsfarm suggested. I'm not saying i'm not happy with the SF250 my oil boiler has bin completely turn off for 7 days now and the house has bin 71* for the most part, we haven't ran out of domestic hot water ether. The lowest i've seen the boiler water temp was 130* after heavy use. What i did was made my own version of a boiler. Ware the sf260 is a boiler. The 260 would be easer to hook up and more efficient with a faster recovery time i think. The only thing with the 260 you wouldn't get the radiant heat, dew to the insulated jacket. If i had found this forum before i got my stove, i most likely would have gone with a boiler.
Razzler
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Coal Size/Type: Buck

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: greg white On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 9:44 am

Hi,I have a SF150 little brother to the SF250.I would do it all over again,Remember,you can always turn it down,but you can only turn it up so far.I have no knowledge of thee other stove,but the SF150 will burn bit o mess,antrachite and wood with ease!!!,it dont care,nothing to switch fuels either except minor ka nob turning,you do not have to let the fire die either,just place the fuel in here it will burn,yep.
I have my SF150 in the shop,I would really like a SF250 in my house.
I guess I have used up my .02cents.
GW
greg white
 

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: sandman On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:27 am

i have a mark III and a sf-150

who's going to tend the stove and what are you going to burn?

i'm burning a lot more wood than coal in both.

for me i think the mark III is easier to run (one knob to adjust)

the sf needs more attention when burning wood. the heat exchanger does too good of a job and can cause a build up of creosol if you not careful and keeping a close eye on the flue temp.

if burning coal and you want to tie into a forced hot air system get a sf.
sandman
 
Stove/Furnace Make: harman
Stove/Furnace Model: VF3000, mark III sf150&250

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: hamiltow On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:04 pm

Thanks folks,

I am going to be burning anthracite. I had heard that the SF-250 didn't burn coal very evenly. I was also concerned that on mild days, 35-40 degrees, that even with the thing running fairly low may be too much heat.

I think the heat exchanger could be set up to take cold air in using existing cold air return, then use heat exchanger output to get to a couple of more isolated areas.

I'm concerned about leaving stokers unattended all day while at work, and I want to be able to fall back to the propane hot air when away for extended periods.

Bill.
hamiltow
 
Stove/Furnace Make: TBD
Stove/Furnace Model: TBD

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:47 pm

I agree with the thrust of most posts on this thread.....The more open your floorplan the more options you have. I own a 44'X26' raised ranch (about 2200sf) with an open staircase that allows me to heat the entire house with a hand-fired Harman TLC-2000 located in my basement family room. I like my setup because the stove is a very attractive focal point in the den, was relatively inexpensive to buy, does not require electricity to operate (thus is quiet & will work in power failures) & through the use of egg-crate panels in the (fam room) suspended ceiling & a few small fans, heats the whole house. Another feature I like is the fact that I can heat all winter (in Massachusetts) using only about 1.5 tons of coal.
That being said, your particular floorplan will determine what you'll need.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:50 pm

Sorry for the double post. Is there a way to delete one?
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: LsFarm On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:59 pm

Yep, it's done. :D :lol:
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: Mark III or SF-250

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Jan 29, 2008 2:01 pm

LsFarm wrote:Yep, it's done. :D :lol:
Greg L.


Thanks...How'd you do that?
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

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