The Van Wert VA600 Project

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Fri Jul 22, 2016 9:56 pm

An extended coil mount is the way I am thinking of going. Maybe for now we will get the extended mount installed and use the bad coil plate to block it off. That way if a coil has to go in, it will be quick and easy.

-Don
StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

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Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: Scottscoaled On: Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:00 pm

I like using a blank off plate and a tube of the right stuff gasket maker from Napa. Cheap, easy, and did I say easy.
Scottscoaled
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520, 700, Van Wert 800 GJ 61,53
Baseburners & Antiques: Magic Stewart 16, times 2!
Coal Size/Type: Lots of buck
Other Heating: Slant Fin electric boiler backup

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:05 am

I finally have a plan for this VA-600. I'm going to put it in my basement to replace the current BairMatic/Van Wert boiler. One of the reasons for doing this is the VA-600 has a nice set of covers that can be well insulated. This will help keep my AC system from being overworked during the Summer.

Another reason is the VA-600 will have no problem supplying heat to the house, DHW and the garage at the same time.

On Tuesday while I was snowed in, I put the stoker together and started running a series of feed rate tests with rice coal. Since I have read about quite a few people gearing down there VA-600 stokers, I wanted to know what feed rate we would be running at. in this series of tests we are using a 21 tooth pot auger sprocket instead of the VA-600 18 tooth sprocket.

Test rig. The bin auger has 1.5 flights sticking out the end of the pipe.
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DRIVE COMPONENT SIZES:
Pot auger sprocket = 21 Tooth
Gearbox sprocket = 10 Tooth
Gearbox ratio = 600 : 1
Gearbox pulley = 3"

In this test we changed the size of the motor pulley to change the feed rate.

MOTOR PULLEY SIZE = POUNDS PER HOUR:
3" = 10
3.5" = 12.125
4" = 14.5
Split pulley set at 3.25" (all the way in) = 11.5
Split pulley set at 3.05" (1 turn out) = 10.5

3" motor pulley, 10 pounds per hour.
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3.5" motor pulley, 12.125 pounds per hour.
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4" motor pulley, 14.5 pounds per hour.
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Split pulley set at 3.25" ( all the way in), 11.5 pounds per hour.
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Split pulley set at 3.05" (1 turn out), 10.5 pounds per hour.
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So now I have a good idea of what feed rate to expect running the 21 tooth pot auger sprocket. It can be run from 10 pounds per hour up to 14.5 pounds per hour. I don't think we will need to go below 10 pounds per hour but obviously we could by opening up the split pulley more.

I may run some feed rate tests with the 18 tooth pot auger but I'm pretty convinced the 21 tooth is the way to go when burning rice coal. The 18 tooth speeds up the augers which requires slowing down the pulleys to the gearbox to achieve the same feed rates. Slowing down the pulleys, slows down the combustion blower, possibly to the point that it can't supply enough air.

-Don
StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:12 am

Sounds like a great project.

I would put some effort into getting buck size coal rather than modifying the stoker to burn rice.
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: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:37 am

Rob R. wrote:Sounds like a great project.

I would put some effort into getting buck size coal rather than modifying the stoker to burn rice.

It's more like extra effort and expense. I'm pretty sure the VA-600 will burn rice just fine. Outside of the coal region, coal suppliers only offer the 4 basic coal sizes; Stove, Chestnut, Pea and Rice.

My rice coal gets delivered strait into my bin for about $40 a ton less than I can get Buckwheat for. I have no real reason to switch to Buckwheat either. I don't need anymore BTU/hour out of my boiler.

All that being said, I would still love to try some Buckwheat, just to see what it does!

-Don
StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: CoalHeat On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:51 am

Very creative use of smoke pipes there.
CoalHeat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1959 EFM 350
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Magnafire Mark I
Baseburners & Antiques: Sears Signal Oak 15 & Andes Kitchen Range
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Fisher Fireplace Insert

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:19 am

It is strange that it is easier to get buck at the Canadian border than in PA.

Time to build that coal bunker and get a tri-axle load.
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: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: Dave 1234 On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 1:31 pm

Rob R. wrote:
Time to build that coal bunker and get a tri-axle load.


+1 ! ! Don, If you have extra space in the yard its easy. I put down a 16x20 sheet of rubber roofing, laid 3 utility poles on the sides, brought the rubber up over the top of the poles . Now the trucker can back the tt load of coal in, slowly dump and creep forward. Vwala! instant coal bunker for next to nothing. I'm in Ct. so trucking is more for me, but my last tt load was 175.00 a ton total cost.

I just ran out of buck 3 weeks ago and now I'm back to the original pile of rice. I wish I had the buck . I'm going through rice at almost double the rate of my buck. Both lehigh coal so the increase feed can't be only BTU value.

Dave 8-)
Dave 1234
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1948 International boiler, EFM S-20 stoker
Coal Size/Type: Buck,
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: 520

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Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:07 pm

Thanks for all the advice guys! I hope I never have to go through what you guys in the Northern states go through to get your coal. I do need to consider it though, my coal supplier will likely retire or drop dead at some point. If his son doesn't pick up the delivery part of the business, I will be out of luck.

Right now it's just way to easy, I make a phone call, I open the basement door, he puts the chute in and suddenly there's 6 ton of coal in my bin, AND it's cheaper than me going to pick it up myself!

I also live on a hill with a long, steep, narrow, curved driveway. A tractor trailer would have a difficult time getting up here. Even if it did, there is no room for it to turn around.

I have no flat yard space to put 10 or 20 ton of coal. Even if I did, I have no way of getting the coal out of the yard and into the basement. There is no way I'm shoveling 10 ton of coal.

For right now the plan is to prey for a long and healthy life for my coal guy!

-Don
Last edited by StokerDon on Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: Dave 1234 On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:15 pm

Don if I had a way to get coal shot directly into the boiler bin it would be awful !
The way I do it now gives me reason to bit**ch and moan every time its muddy or snowing like last week . :lol:

Dave 8-)
Dave 1234
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1948 International boiler, EFM S-20 stoker
Coal Size/Type: Buck,
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM
Stove/Furnace Model: 520

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:24 pm

Dave that's one of the great things about this forum. I can sit on my couch and read about all you guys with outside storage complain'in about frozen coal, snow on top of your coal, ect... :lol:

The Van Wert just sits there in the basement sipping coal out of it's bin!

-Don
StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Sun May 21, 2017 5:09 pm

I probably think to much about this kind of stuff but the other day I was thinking about the interchangeability of stoker parts between the VA-400, VA-600 and VA-800. So, I started wondering if the VA-800 pot extension and burn rings would fit in a VA-600 base.

VA-600 on the left and VA-800 on the right.
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The 600 has 9 burn rings, the 800 has 10. The 600 ash ring is 13.25", the 800 is 14.625". The 600 pot extension has 3 bolts for the ash ring, the 800 has 4. Both pot extensions are attached with 3 mounting bolts to the base.
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So naturally I though the VA-800 pot extension would bolt right on the VA-600 base.
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Not quite. For some reason the VA-600 bolt circle is slightly wider than the VA-800.
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It's only a little bit off so I took care of it with a round file.
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Then I mocked it up. It fits pretty good!!!
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VA-600.
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VA-800.
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This seems like an interesting way to Hot Rod your VA-600. I can't think of a good reason not to do this. The ash ring will be 5/8" closer to the boiler walls but that shouldn't be a problem unless we burn some bad coal that klinkers up.

I will likely start this with the VA-600 rings and pot extension. I just wanted to be sure all these parts would fit together. This way, I can install it later without any guess work.
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-Don
Attachments
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StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

Re: The Van Wert VA600 Project

PostBy: StokerDon On: Fri May 26, 2017 7:31 pm

Today I got most of the stoker parts cleaned up.

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Air chamber is ready to go in.
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I cleaned and wire wheeled the blower housing. It looks pretty good the way it is, I have not yet decided if I will paint it.
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Gearbox with mount and blower. On this one I don't think I'm going to take it apart to paint it.
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The stoker mounting plate. I think I am going to paint this a darker color. The boiler will be two tone so this plate will get the darker of the two.
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Air adjustment and data plate. They look good as is.
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I still have to clean up the Motor, the transfer head and all the hardware.

-Don
StokerDon
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: BairMatic BMC-500 with Van Wert VA400 Stoker, Gentleman Janitor GJ-671/EFM S-15 stoker, Van Wert VA-600
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF3500
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Noth'in but COAL! Well, Maybe a little tiny bit of wood

Visit Leisure Line