Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: magikk On: Wed Feb 06, 2008 8:32 am

Hi everyone,I was just wondering what types of soft coal your burning & how it burns.I'm in the Johnstown-Altoona area & I've been burning a Bender nut its strip mined coal from clearfield county.I burned about 3 ton so far but it has alot of fine & has to be be tended every 3-4 hours.It tends to cake over alot & needs broken up.I've also tried Pittsburgh nut it burns quite well it burns fast & hot but it makes alot of soot.Now the local yard has coal from the Kittanning vein haven't tried it yet but have to get my bin filled soon.The price also jumped $10 to $90 a ton for all of the above coals.I'm just curious what everyones burning.See you Mike
magikk
 
Stove/Furnace Make: US Stove CO
Stove/Furnace Model: Clayton 1600

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: LsFarm On: Wed Feb 06, 2008 9:25 am

Hello Mike, your specific mines and experiences burning those coals are greater than almost all of us on this forum combined.

I'd PM member 'berlin' he is located in the western PA western NY area and has lots of experience with the Bituminous coals available. Maybe he will post a list of mines, breakers and retailers for us.

What you describe about how the coal burns is typical Bituminous. For $90/ton, I'd borrow a truck and drive a few hours and get some Anthracite from the Pottsville area, about one hour northeast of Harrisburg, on I-81.

If you are home to tend a Bitum fire, and have a stove or other burning appliance that can handle the soot/bridging/ ash quantity, then finding the best mine to buy from is worthwhile.

Does your Clayton furnace have V shaped firebrick on the bottom/sides of the firebox?? or are the sides vertical.?? Vertical will make your life much easier for burning Bitum or any coal for that matter.

I'd PM Berlin, he's the bitum guru.

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: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: magikk On: Wed Feb 06, 2008 10:41 am

Hi Greg,My Clayton does have the V-shaped firebox.I found out alittle too late that it wasn't the most effiecient design for burning coal.I'm looking at the harmon furnaces so saving my pennies for a year or two then the clayton is moving to my garage.We live in a mobile home with rooms built on & I didn't have many options to put the furnace inside so I put it in a little shed & burried the duct work.I wasn't really too sure it would push the air that far in the duct work .So I got the cheapest furnace I could,Rather than spend alot & find it didn't work out.I can get reading nut at the local coal yard it was $180 a ton but I imagine the price has gone up on it as well.I have burned the reading coal I tried ten 5 gallon buckets full earlier in the season it burned well but still undecided if its worth it in my current furnace.I can't keep the fire small.It seems like I have to have the firebox completely full to cover all the grates so it'll burn good.I figure this keeps the air moving through the coal instead of around it.This is my first year burning coal at home & I'm having some fun figuring it out.See you Mike
magikk
 
Stove/Furnace Make: US Stove CO
Stove/Furnace Model: Clayton 1600


Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: Berlin On: Wed Feb 06, 2008 4:08 pm

I'm currently burning kittaning coal from jefferson/indiana county and LOVE it, very sooty however. doesn't bridge anywhere near as much as most bituminous coals east of the mississippi do; it's almost a southern illinois coal without the clinkers... which is ideal. if you want to know where i'm getting it, pm me.

I would have to say that this kittaning coal is the all-around best thing i've burned to date.
Berlin
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: Bud On: Thu Feb 07, 2008 11:09 pm

I'm burning bit from a mine south of wellsboro off rt. 287 @ $80 per ton and other than the fines at the bottom it is great two clinkers in one ton . Berlin ,how do you find out the ash content ,volatiles and such for your coal? I show up he weighs my truck comes out loads and I pay. Nothing about the contents is documented anywhere .How do establish BTU per hour ?Very new to this ,still elated as to the difference between $500 a month in fuel oil per month $80 per month in coal. Bud
Bud
 
Stove/Furnace Make: U.S. Stove #1537

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: Painter On: Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:43 pm

I am currently burning high volitile Pittsburgh lump and nut coal from the Cumberland Md.area thats barged in to a coal processing plant 5 miles from my house on the Monongahala river (Braddock,Pa.)burns excellent and hot but puts out alot of soot.I also burn lo -volitile bit. coal from the Somerset Co.Pa. area(Windber field,C-Prime vein).It burns real clean with lo soot output.Its alot slower of a fire compared to the pittsburgh coal.I have to give that stuff alot more draft.I like them both.They are both excellent coal.
Painter
 

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: magikk On: Mon Feb 11, 2008 11:25 am

Hey Painter, how does the Somerset burn on its own? Is it pea size or nut.One of the local yards have the somerset coal but I believe its pea size.One of the guys I know mixes it with the pittssburgh.I need to get at least ton this week so not sure what i'm getting yet.Thanks Mike
magikk
 
Stove/Furnace Make: US Stove CO
Stove/Furnace Model: Clayton 1600

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: Berlin On: Mon Feb 11, 2008 4:50 pm

the somerset low vol is a good coal with one caveat, it has a higher swelling index (more prone to "bridging") than most of the pittsburg coals.
Berlin
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: Painter On: Mon Feb 11, 2008 7:23 pm

Its hard to find the lo vol in nut.I found acouple good sources for nut.It definitely bridges alot more than the pittsburgh coal I have.Which doesnt bridge at all.The pea size compared to the nut bridges even worse.I think the swelling index is around a 8.I think overall it is pretty good coal.lo soot.lo smoke.Give it a try even the pea size works well.Especially in warmer weather .P.m. If your lookin for a source.It also burns good with hi vol coal.I usually burn one or the other but I have mixed the two.
Painter
 

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Tue Feb 12, 2008 3:15 pm

magikk wrote:It seems like I have to have the firebox completely full to cover all the grates so it'll burn good.I figure this keeps the air moving through the coal instead of around it.


Your observation is correct. A deep bed of coal that covers the entire grate is a must. This forces the air to go through the coal bed, rather than around it. Don't be scared to fill the stove to max capacity, the fire is controlled by the air; not the quantity of coal.
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: pnvg On: Sat Feb 14, 2009 3:48 pm

I am close to Hbg. Pa. and need a place to buy soft coal.
I now have a Daka wood furnace converted to coal. I tried anthracite but I am dissapointed with the results.
The weather conditions must be just right for good burning.
I want to try soft coal next before I give up and burn wood only.
pnvg
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Daka
Stove/Furnace Model: 521

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: cokehead On: Sun Mar 01, 2009 10:40 am

I just acquired some cannel coal that has been stored in a basement for 35 years about 24 hours ago. I attempled to burn it in my mother's Godin and my Warm Morning 617-A. I put 4 pieces the size of my fist into the Godin on top of some antracite. That was a mistake! Even with the draft closed down it roared and billowed smoke out the chimney. The barametric damper flapped wildly and I could see the flame going up the pipe. It turned the stove pipe red and scarred the ba-jee-buz out of my mother. I could hear the coal fracturing. It was sort of like throwing a box of 22 rim fires into the stove. You could hear chips of coal pinging against the inside of the stove. It all ended well but the cannel coal is banned from her house and rightly so. I shall flogg myself and kneel on pea coal for my reckless ways.

At home I continued my learning. In a nutshell I have found I can only add pieces one to two times the side of my fist, one at a time. I have to give the stove maximum secondary air and close the primary air intake. Also it is best to keep the firebox as empty as possible to maximize its volume to give the smoke both time and a place to burn. This way the smoke is minimized. I can only use it (the cannel coal) if I'm home for the day and can tend it often. When the orangy flames die down to next to nothing I can throw another chunk in. It is not a good fuel for the long haul.

I will still use anthracite when I go to bed or to work.

I was under the impression that in a basket grate you can burn it in a fireplace but with all the violent fractering I witnessed even I am not crazy enough to attempt it. Keep in mind that I have 24 hours experience with this variety of coal and by no means an authority.
cokehead
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Locke, Godin, Tarm in da works
Stove/Furnace Model: Warm Morning 617-A, 3721, 502

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: europachris On: Mon Mar 02, 2009 1:20 pm

Cannel coal can ONLY be burned in an open fireplace on a grate. It was used "back in the day" for a cheery, bright fire like wood, but without the wood, so to speak.

As you've found out, putting it (with it's extreme volatile content) in an enclosed stove can be dangerous.

Chris
europachris
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM 350/Iron Fireman
Stove/Furnace Model: Custom bituminous burner

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: cokehead On: Mon Mar 23, 2009 10:30 pm

Well Chris, I spent Sunday proving you correct. I made Corned Beef and Cabbage with cannel coal. I had only a very small amount of active coal in the botton of the stove. The red area on the grates was smaller than my hand at times but the flames filled the stove durring the flares. It would get very smokey when I added a couple of small chunks, would flare up for 10 to 15 minutes and then become a small addition to the red embers on the grates waiting for the next carefully placed pieces. The smoke outside was bad and it "snowed" black soot. For the sake of the neighbors I'm only going to use it to save a fire on its way out if even that. I have plenty of wood that would do the same job. I have a couple tons of the stuff. I should trade it off for anthracite or a less smokey bit.
cokehead
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Locke, Godin, Tarm in da works
Stove/Furnace Model: Warm Morning 617-A, 3721, 502

Re: Different types of soft coal.what burns good for you?

PostBy: rockwood On: Mon Mar 23, 2009 10:39 pm

Could you get video of the next time you burn cannel coal? I've never even seen cannel coal let alone burn it so it would be nice to see what it does....If it's not too dangerous.? :)
rockwood
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Stokermatic coal furnace
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Rockwood Stoveworks Circulator
Baseburners & Antiques: Malleable/Monarch Range
Coal Size/Type: Soft coal: Lump and stoker (slack coal)