It looks like a potbelly stove and stands about 5' high. The outer jacket is missing so it could be like the bottom right one in the ad. The grate has holes about 2" wide by 6" long. As far as the sap burning, as long as a fresh suppky is added it won't burn, once it gets boiled down to about 90% done I let the fire die down and drain it off and finish it up inside. The last little bit is critical, an extra couple minutes and it all turns to honey, then the only fix is to add water and try to reboil it but the taste is pretty much ruined at that point. I've never boiled with coal before, but I have a good tall stack on the coal beast so it shouldn't affect the flavor one bit. I'm not an expert at sugarin' by any means, but it's fun trying. The good news is the local maple fest is a few weeks after I get a chance at making my own, so if I screw up I just buy a gallon or 2.