First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: sawdust artist On: Sat Dec 10, 2016 1:48 pm

Just learning how to run this thing. So far I'm impressed. I was wondering if my ash quality is normal or if I'm putting out too much unburned coal. The black ash that is remaing looks kinda like wood coals with cracks but it is still hard, is there any heat remainging in that stuff? Boiler is located in an outdoor insulated shed that stays above 60 degrees with the heat off the boiler. Ashing temp set at 110 degrees. These pictures of ash are after 2 days of 17 degrees and windy.
I am heating about 7000 sq ft. House 3 floors, garage, and shop.
I'm new to this posting thing also, got my pictures in the wrong order.

Whats left.jpg
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After vigorously rubbing thru 1/2" X 1/2" screen.


Fines screened out.jpg
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Fine powder shaken out thru screen.


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The way it comes from under boiler
sawdust artist
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS Coal Gun S260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Burnham oil converted to Coal/Wood
Other Heating: Munchkin LP 80,000 BTU

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Dec 10, 2016 4:01 pm

Welcome. That sounds like quite an installation!

How does the fire look when viewed through the door? See any orange?

Ash looks pretty normal in the tub, but there might be some improvement when the weather gets a little colder.

Did you put a big load on the boiler when it was first fired? That helps establish a full fire in the chamber.
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: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: plumberman On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 8:00 am

looks good to me. on mine when it gets warmer out i'll get a lot of black in mine,but if you step on it, it crushes easy and is real dull black. so i call it burned,just not as good!
plumberman
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: coal gun 130
Coal Size/Type: pea
Other Heating: solar dhw/samsung mini split/oil

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:09 am

Good burn.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: fifthg On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:38 am

I guess it is a relative thing.In a testing lab,a lot of that would be considered unburned or at least incompletely burned,and would be put back in the testing oven to finish burning for a true ash test.So yes,there is without question,still "heat"or btus remaining in those black/gray screenings.If that is the best it can burn,it would be considered very high ash,bony coal.I think the coal is moving to the ash pan too quickly.However,No real world stoker or stove will accomplish perfect burn.
fifthg
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Harman DVC 500
Hand Fed Coal Stove: warm morning # 500
Baseburners & Antiques: Peninsular Western Hot Blast No.44K and Reading Foundry & Supply Co.
Coal Size/Type: stove,nut,pea,buck,and rice -Gale Mining Co Anthracite

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:41 am

fifthg wrote:I think the coal is moving to the ash pan too quickly.


I had the same thought. That is why I asked about the appearance of the fire when the boiler is working. If there is no orange visible when the boiler is working, it likely needs an ashing adjustment.
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: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: lsayre On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:53 am

Looks OK to me.
lsayre
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS S130 Coal Gun
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Anthracite Pea
Other Heating: Resistance Boiler (13.5 KW)

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: fifthg On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:53 am

No major adjustment,or one can end up chasing one's tail,so to speak.A little slower feed rate first,maybe,and a little more air second?
fifthg
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Harman DVC 500
Hand Fed Coal Stove: warm morning # 500
Baseburners & Antiques: Peninsular Western Hot Blast No.44K and Reading Foundry & Supply Co.
Coal Size/Type: stove,nut,pea,buck,and rice -Gale Mining Co Anthracite

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:59 am

fifthg wrote:No major adjustment,or one can end up chasing one's tail,so to speak.A little slower feed rate first,maybe,and a little more air second?


the coal is gravity fed on these units, adjusting the ash settings is all you can do. No air adjustment is possible.
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: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: lsayre On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:00 am

fifthg wrote:No major adjustment,or one can end up chasing one's tail,so to speak.A little slower feed rate first,maybe,and a little more air second?


AA's and AHS's don't have these sort of adjustments, but their heat transfer method is so much more efficient than a standard boiler that the overall efficiency is going to favor the AA/AHS in the end despite the presence of some unburned coal.
lsayre
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS S130 Coal Gun
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Anthracite Pea
Other Heating: Resistance Boiler (13.5 KW)

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: fifthg On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:04 am

I have no experience with those units,so I stand corrected on the adjustments.I would feed it some better coal,namely my Gale Coal,in the alternative.I would not be happy with that burn. :D
fifthg
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Harman DVC 500
Hand Fed Coal Stove: warm morning # 500
Baseburners & Antiques: Peninsular Western Hot Blast No.44K and Reading Foundry & Supply Co.
Coal Size/Type: stove,nut,pea,buck,and rice -Gale Mining Co Anthracite

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: lsayre On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:14 am

fifthg wrote:I have no experience with those units,so I stand corrected on the adjustments.I would feed it some better coal,namely my Gale Coal,in the alternative.I would not be happy with that burn. :D


I believe that Gale would be a good match to the AA/AHS units. I know from experience that mine favors coals like Blaschak over Mammoth vane coals such as Stockton (and likely by inference, others from that source and same general mining area). I get a far more complete burn and far fewer (to no) out-fires with a bit softer and more volatile grades of anthracite overall. The really rock hard and shiny dark black low volatility stuff doesn't burn as easily or completely for me. I think volatility is the key driver here. Harmony worked great in my AHS, and it was the most volatile coal I have fed it.

I also ash at 110 degrees, and with 5 degrees of hysteresis.
lsayre
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS S130 Coal Gun
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Anthracite Pea
Other Heating: Resistance Boiler (13.5 KW)

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: lzaharis On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:50 am

sawdust artist wrote:Just learning how to run this thing. So far I'm impressed. I was wondering if my ash quality is normal or if I'm putting out too much unburned coal. The black ash that is remaing looks kinda like wood coals with cracks but it is still hard, is there any heat remainging in that stuff? Boiler is located in an outdoor insulated shed that stays above 60 degrees with the heat off the boiler. Ashing temp set at 110 degrees. These pictures of ash are after 2 days of 17 degrees and windy.
I am heating about 7000 sq ft. House 3 floors, garage, and shop.
I'm new to this posting thing also, got my pictures in the wrong order.

Whats left.jpg
After vigorously rubbing thru 1/2" X 1/2" screen.


Fines screened out.jpg
Fine powder shaken out thru screen.


Untouched.jpg
The way it comes from under boiler

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My Rice Coal ash in my KAA-4-1 looked exactly like that until I changed the timer settings to 2 minutes at 15 minutes and 2 minutes 15 seconds at the 30 minute mark on the 30 minute Intermatic Timer. I realise this is for my keystoker but it has worked and I fill an ash basket in three days on average in milder weather.

ON a heat call I get the wide open burn with a one inch band of ash falling off the stoker and 3 inches of burning coals during a heat call with the blue flames reaching the steam chest and 3 inches of un burned coal with the dancing blue ladies coming off the rice coal that is being pushed to the fire bed.

I have had a consistant hold fire with no out fires since I changed the water temperatures and the pusher plate stroke.

Rehandling it and screening what you think is good coal it only leads to out fires, been there done that, and that is why I gradually slowed the feed rate to 9 plus threads on the stokers pusher plate and reduced my low limit to 120 and my high limit to 150 with a 15 degree differential leaving my dump temperature at 180.

If you can change your water temperature settings to a lower temperature gradually over time like I did I think you will see a huge difference in ash condition as the fiure will burn hotter and longer when needed and when the system is satisfied it will keep up and you will have a finer more burned ash. In my saying that the boiler will cycle more but the coal ash will be much better with little to any un burned coal in it.

I would slow the feed rate down and reduce your high and low limit water temperatures.
By doing that all you need to do is push up the thermostat to make heat and the stoker will
always be working and keeping a hot fire which will make a finer more burned coal ash.

I have had complete success with these lower settings now that I have thrown the Hydrostat 3250 Plus digital controls to the curb and replaced them with Honeywell controls and a B+G RB122-E Low Water Cut Off.


Do you have a direct drive combustion fan or the belt driven option? A lot of the AHS owner folks have had issues with the direct drive units failing due to excess heat apparently.
lzaharis
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KAA-4-1 dual fuel boiler
Coal Size/Type: rice
Other Heating: kerosene for dual fuel Keystoker

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: sawdust artist On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 6:41 pm

Thanks guys for all the info. Seems the two things that affect it are the ashing temp and boiler set temp. Like fifthg said too many adjustments and your chasing your tail.
This reminds me of the old guy who was in charge of the thermostat at church. He told me that when he gets complaints of being too cold and complaints of being to hot on the same Sunday he knows hes got it set just right. :)
I bought this unit used from AHS, it was heating their fabrication shop and the ash temp was set at 110.
The internal boiler is from 1984 but has been updated with all new exterior and controls. It has the belt drive fan.
Early on I had the ash temp as low as 105 because my shed wasn't closed in yet and it would pull really cold air across the ash sensor and drop more unburned stuff.
sawdust artist
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS Coal Gun S260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Burnham oil converted to Coal/Wood
Other Heating: Munchkin LP 80,000 BTU

Re: First season AHS S260. Ash quality?

PostBy: plumberman On: Sun Dec 11, 2016 6:49 pm

i did alot of playing around on ash temps. in a nutshell ashing stays at 130f water 150 untill cold temps set in [single digits] then i raise water to 180f. works just fine for me!
plumberman
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: coal gun 130
Coal Size/Type: pea
Other Heating: solar dhw/samsung mini split/oil