Wood Boiler to Coal Conversion

Wood Boiler to Coal Conversion

PostBy: wagado On: Wed Jan 30, 2008 4:21 pm

Has anyone successfully found a way to burn anthracite coal in an outdoor wood boiler? Or is this really not reasonable?
wagado
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Timber Ridge - Wood Boiler

Re: Wood Boiler to Coal Conversion

PostBy: LsFarm On: Wed Jan 30, 2008 5:21 pm

It's possible. It really depends on the design of the OWB. Anthracite must have all the combustion air coming up through the coal bed. No air can be entering above the fire.

So if you have a typical OWB with a solid steel bottom to the firebox, where you shove the fire out of the way and use a shovel to remove the ashes, then you would have to raise a false floor, at least 5-8" above the actual floor, make the new floor with shaker grates, cut a hole in the end of the OWB to make a door for an ash pan to be slid under the grates. Make a door with an air vent to let in air under the new floor.

With the above modifications you could burn coal in the OWB, but you would have load of coal around 200-300# to make and keep a fire going, the entire firebed must be composed of only coal and at least 6-8" deep. This amount of coal in the firebed makes the redesigned OWB impractical unless you are near the coal mines and breakers.

It would be cheaper to get a used EFM, AHS, AxemanAnderson, Keystoker Harman, Van Wert or Gentlman Janitor bliler and build a building around it, to burn anthracite well. These boilers are designed to burn anthracite and the heat exchangers are designed to get the heat out of the coal exhaust, and to be cleanable to remove flyash.

Post a photo of your firebox in your OWB, if you are lucky and have one with built in grates and an ashdrawer, you could possibly make it work.

Hope this helps. Greg L

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LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Wood Boiler to Coal Conversion

PostBy: wagado On: Wed Jan 30, 2008 5:45 pm

Thanks for the answer! Yes that does help.

I do not have any grates or ashpan in my OWB. I tried buring some Anthracite on a small fireplace grate right in front of the blower on the door. It got hot from the wood fire, but didn't stay burning. I don't mind burning wood, but I'm running out, and need to go cutting. I thought it would be cool to have a alternative fuel.

Thanks again for the help.
wagado
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Timber Ridge - Wood Boiler

Visit Lehigh Anthracite

Re: Wood Boiler to Coal Conversion

PostBy: LsFarm On: Wed Jan 30, 2008 5:58 pm

Where are you located?? Bituminous coal burns sort of like wood, it can be added to a wood fire and it will burn with the wood, and augment the wood fire. Bituminous coal is more forgiving about having the air coming only from below the fire. But you will not usually burn a big chink of Bituminous coal completely, it still needs the hot coal bed and under-fire air to burn completly to ash.
Bituminous coal costs less and can be purchased in bigger chunks that could work in an OWB.

Let us know where you live, and Maybe someone knows where a source of Bitum coal is.

Greg L

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LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Wood Boiler to Coal Conversion

PostBy: wagado On: Thu Feb 07, 2008 12:23 pm

I live in Erie County PA. I don't know much about where to get coal, so any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks
wagado
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Timber Ridge - Wood Boiler

Visit Lehigh Anthracite