Ash content to be content.

Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Freddy On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 10:33 am

By winter I'll have an Axeman Anderson 130 on line and burning coal. I understand it will burn just about any pea coal, but, if I had a choice, what ash content would make me and the machine happy? Will it like a lower or higher ash %? I guess I'll be happy if it just heats without too much attention, but if 7% ash coal burned better for some reason, I wouldn't want to order something with 12%.

Thanks!

Fred
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 10:58 am

Hi Freddy, I've burnt both high [~14% ] and low [~6% ] ash coal in my AA 260.. the only issue is that really low ash coal will make more and bigger clinkers.. and of course the ash pan will fill up quicker..

Once I got my AA260 burning correctly [you won't have this problem with the AA130] it produced around 1/4 to 1/2 an ash pan full every 24 hours.. this depended on the weather.. and therefore the coal use..

My Coal Hopper holds about a week's worth of coal.. When I'm at work [gone for 5 days] my caretaker swaps the ashpans every day, unless it is only 1/4 full, he doesn't like them when they are full, too heavy for him.. he leaves the full pans in a row next to the boiler for me to empty :lol: .

With the AA130, your ash pan is smaller, so the weight won't be as much of an issue.. I think the fill-rates will be about the same, really cold weather will mostly fill an ashpan in 24 hours.. of course this will vary with your heating load..

I mix the low and higher ash coal.. I don't understand why, but a 50/50 mix of Superior and UAE seems to burn hotter, and create less ash. Forum member Jpen mentioned to me at the Meet&Greet that he sees the same effect with mixed coal..

I don't think you will go wrong with Either UAE or Superior coal.. UAE is a dry breaker,, the coal has more fines in it, so is a bit 'dirty' to work with,, Superior is washed several times.. That's the major difference I see with the two.

Greg L

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LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 11:13 am

7 is too low and 12 is too high IMO, when you get around 8,9, its just about right. :D What's strange is when you get into really low ash coal it has tendency to not fully burn or not burn at all. Just to add if you talk to alot of these old timers they want some bone in the coal....

Coal can be a funny animal and I often wonder sometimes when I see on here someone saying they got bad coal if in fact it's the exact opposite. I'll tell you a little story.... Once upon a time in a land far, far far away....there was stretch when Hudson was putting out some 6% ash where they were getting the raw product from down near Hazleton. This coal is usually very dense, its the type you can literally crack and get shards sharp enough to shave with. Most of my customers were used to lower quality product more in the 10% range with some bone in it and had been set in their ways for many years in their habits and how they burned it. In any event I started getting a odd assortment of complaints, mostly from people with stokers. The people with the hand fired stoves on the other hand were ecstatic for the most part except for the ones complaining it was too damn hot because they had to put so much air on it. Long story short they needed to adjust the furnace/stove to meet the specs of the coal.

the only issue is that really low ash coal will make more and bigger clinkers..


Red ash...Red ash... ;)
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

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Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 11:47 am

Red ash,, Red ash.. well I have a theory.. first,, is there any white ash coal that is 6-7%?? Currently only red ash coal is available in that low ash content.

I think that as the coal burns,, each piece of coal burns from the outside surface towards the center of the piece of coal.. So the outside turns to ash, and then neighboring pieces also turn to ash.. so there is a layer of ash acting as an insulating layer or barrier between the pieces.. Without the ash, or with too little ash, the hot coals tend to weld together and make clinkers.

That's my theory anyway. I can't figure out otherwise why low ash coal makes clinkers so easy.

Greg L
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 12:57 pm

Well Greg to tell the truth I don't know if there is white ash that low using testing methods, what I do know is white ash don't clinker. :D If burned correctly you can get it to turn to powder, done it myself as previously mentioned in a Franco Belge. Long slow burn is the key for that.

The ash from the stoker is different story though and you have to really get it set right, you'll get a lot less ash during days like this when it has a chance to "simmer".
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: rberq On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 3:07 pm

I noticed the same thing this Spring, setting the air about as low as it would go so we had heat at night but not too much during the warm days. The burn time was 24+ hours rather than 10-12 hours. With the same coal, the ash was much finer and more powdery than in mid-Winter when it was really cranking.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Freddy On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 4:04 pm

Thanks guys, good info. I am a bit confused though with "the only issue is that really low ash coal will make more and bigger clinkers.. and of course the ash pan will fill up quicker.. ". I was thinking low ash would mean less emptying the ash can. The clinkers make it fill faster? Generally speaking, wouldn't 12% fill the bucket faster than 8%? Or am I missing something simple like, percentage by weight doesn't follow percentage by volume?

Looks like Superior will be the place that get's my money.
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: LsFarm On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 5:33 pm

Hi Freddy, yes I should have explained that better.. the clinkers take up more space, if you are getting clinkers,, Some boiler designs don't clinker, others do.. I f I'm burning hot, i sometimes see clinkers the size of a telephone book,, I am surprised the ashing action is able to eject them from the burn chamber... they look like they would get stuck in there..

Obviously, if there are no clinkers, and the coal is burning well, then the low ash coal will be slower filling the ashpans than a higher ash coal.

Greg L.
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Freddy On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 7:46 pm

That shouldn't be too much of a problem for me.... we have a small phone book! ;)
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Yanche On: Sun Jun 08, 2008 10:00 pm

I had my AHS 130 at an idle for 3 days last week. I got a dual flue clay lined brick chimney built where my single flue block chimney had been. The brick masons came a few days earlier than I had expected and I didn't have enough time to let the fire go completely out. So all I did was shut off the electric power. They tore the block chimney down and built the new one up in 2-1/2 days. All the time the coal fire was burning. They finished and I just powered the boiler back up. In less than an hour I had full boiler temperature. When I dumped the ash it was the finest powdery white ash that has ever come out of my boiler. A much more complete burn than I usually get. Superior brand pea coal that was mined in April or May 2008.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

Re: Ash content to be content.

PostBy: Richard S. On: Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:02 am

Well for comparison for Yanche's post, I've had a fire last 6-8 hours or better after being turned off. Please don't ask me how I know this. :oops:
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Visit Lehigh Anthracite