Hello all, first post here. I am considering becoming a coal burner, and an looking for some advice. This will be our 5th winter in out house (~3000 sqft Including finiehd basement). I have a jotul wood insert in the family room which we put it 2 seasons ago., and love. Now that our youngest is no longer a baby, just turned 3, we really want to encourage the kids to play in the basement, so we adults can get some peace and quiet! It's finished, but unheated. When we moved in, there was a coal chubby in the basement. We had all the chimney's cleaned and inspected, and the guys pulled a couple of 5 gallon buckets of creosote out of that chimney. I do not know if the original owner was burning lots of wood or what, but it was a mess. The piping only went up past the damper, and was in pretty rough shape. We decomissioned the chubby at that time.
I want to get heat in the basement with as little out of pocket cost as possible. Hooking up the coal chubby seems to be the best way to do that since I already have the stove, and would not need to add a SS liner to the chimney. Buying a couple tons of coal is cheaper than a liner would be, let alone a wood stove. The wife is a bit skeptical about coal, and honestly, I would prefer wood, as that is my confort zone. My thought is, let's try it for a season and see how we do.
I was considering have the stove reconditioned by Lary Trainer, but since this is a "trial" season, I think I'll wait. I need to replace the mica, but as far as I can tell, everythign else is in working order. The door seals look good, and the shaker shakes, just some surface rust. I'm going for function over looks right now. If we like it, then we can get her all spiffed up!
1. Does this sound like a reasonable plan?
2. What else do I need to be inspecting to make sure the stove is in operating condition?
3. What piping to I need to connect the stove to my fireplace (I think I need a turn damper, and barometric damper, and enough piping to get it up past the smoke chamber)