Well fellas, Its getting to be that time of year.. The shoulder month into spring. I'm happy to see it finally coming in!
This is the tricky time of the season for operating a hand fed. Keeping draft in the chimney and at the same time not heating yourself out of the house or burning an excessive amount of coal to keep her alive. I like the challenge of it haha.. Today is a good example, currently 58 degrees outside and I've got the Clayton down to a cool simmer with 74 in the house. My fire is nearly in suspended animation and has been since this morning, about 10 hours. Last shake and load was 22 hours ago. It's running so cool that the snap disk mounted on top the air jacket won't hit 115 degrees to turn the blowers on. Only warm slow gravity fed air is circulating thru the duct work during days like this. I keep her going thru the day so I can revive her later for night time heating..
-.01 to -.02 on the manometer
192 over the load door
122 degrees on the pipe
195 degrees just under the load door.
This is all the primary air she is getting right now.
The spinner is closed. Just a sliver open on the other primary air control.
And here is what makes this coal stunt doable. Extra secondary air. This opening leads into the secondary air pipes I installed. There is one on each side of the load door. The extra secondary air flows in over the coal bed, gets heated and goes up my outside block chimney to keep the tiny amount draft flowing the right way while at the same time pulling just enough primary air in to keep her alive.
From now till May I'll do the 24 hour shake and load with a grate slice and poke in between. Later this evening, I'll open the ash door to let her have a big breath of fresh air till her coal is burning good, then do my shake and load. I'll get her down to burning 30 pounds a day, maybe less, which is pretty good I'm thinkin for a fire box capable of holding over a 100 pounds.
By the way her name is "Ashley"..
Coal burning is so much fun!!
Yeah, yeah, I know... I'm such a coal geek...