longislandsteve wrote:My floor plan is very open and I will be placing the coal stove at the bottom of the stairs and the bedrooms will be up stairs.
That’s where my stove is, at the bottom of the stairs. Unless I use a pedestal fan blowing across above the stove, too much heat goes up the stairs and not enough into the first floor living area. We find the pedestal fan to be like white noise, not as intrusive as the fans built into the stoves.
longislandsteve wrote:I was considering using the central air handler to push the heat thru the house
What is your “central air handler”? Is it associated with your boiler, or with an AC system, or what? If you can make it provide even heat distribution that would be very handy. Since your stove heat will be coming from an entirely different location from your old boiler, I assume it would not work right without adjustments.
longislandsteve wrote:I am also looking to please the wife … Can I have functional and attractive?
Probably not attractive enough to please a standard wife. The best you can hope for is that she will tolerate it and come to appreciate the cost savings and only grumble once a month or so.
Unless of course you get one of the antiques and she falls in love with it.
P.S. Will you keep your current boiler available for backup heat? It's awfully handy if you need to leave the house for a few days, if you are sick and can't feed the coal stove, and so on.