I know what you mean about what happens if I get near the range and Melissa is cooking.
She "bought" me the range as a present, but I think it was because she wanted to use it and couldn't move it.
I know exactly what you mean. When I first got my range I was using a lot of wood because it's much cheaper around here than coal. Seems like every farmer and his dog is in the firewood business. Even my Lawyer cuts and sells firewood on the side and he's well into his 70's now.
But after a few seasons I stopped using wood. Even the windfall wood on my property that's free. It's not worth all the extra time having to tend the fire and dampers just to try to get even temps for cooking. And if I didn't come in from the shop soon enough I was spending time restarting the fire. Plus, it could never make it though the night on a load of wood. So every morning I woke up to a cold stove and kitchen , then having to spend time getting it going while using the expensive pro-pain stove to heat water to make my coffee.
With using coal, I come down to a kitchen that's 70F and the kettle is just short of boiling. On the middle back round cover it stays about 200F - 210F.
It's surprising to many wood-fired range owners how long, and how even the temperatures are with a range run on coal. Glad your enjoying and benefiting from it.
That's some red looking coal ash chunks. Looks like you may have a high iron content coal. That can be tough to break it up and get it past any grate bars. Last year's Tractor Supply Kimmel's coal was like that. I had quite a few iron "meteorites" grow in there that jammed the grates. I had to look in with a mechanic's telescoping inspection mirror under the grates to see where the jam was, then go digging with the fire poker from above to get them out of there so I didn't have to shut it down and empting the firebox.
How often are you turning the grate bars ? That may contribute to some of the jams ????
Early on I found I was turning the grates too often and too much. Not knowing how often the grates had to be turned to break up clinkers while they were still in the crumbly stage, I was getting jams from coal that did not have quite enough time to burn to ash. And when I turned them too far I was dumping too much ash along with many still burning coals. With experimenting, I learned how much is enough for the coal I use and the temps I run the range at during the day. That's 550F-650F at the round covers over the firebox and 130-140F three feet up the stove pipe.
Now, I only turn them over once a day - first thing in the morning when reloading after the range has had a long burn over night. For my triangular grates, that means just a 1/3 turn to the next set of bar faces. Then give the bars the short, choppy, shaking until I see a few embers drop and the ash pan just starts to get an even orange glow from above.