The Hesitant TLC 2000

The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Granite Burner On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 12:00 am

I have been burning coal for about 7 years, and for the last 2 years I have been using a new TLC 2000 that I bought from my local dealer. All has gone well with the TLC up till recently. After burning for about 6 weeks this year, the performance of the stove has changed significantly. Most notably, upon reloading fresh coal, the blue flame is smothered and takes an hour or two to relight. I have found this to be true in weather ranging from 5F to 45F. I shut down the stove and inspected the exhaust pipe but found that it was clean. My current hypothesis is that the coal itself is some how different than what I am accustomed to burning. I think the coal may contain less volatile matter. This causes the new coal to act as a heat sink and requires an hour or two for it to get hot enough to evolve flammable gasses. By the same effect, I imagine that the coal which is currently lit cools enough to the point where the gas evolution slows and the flame dies. The other characteristic which I have observed is that once the blue flame does eventually return as an initial flicker, opening the ash pan door causes the flame to go out. I think this is because the gas mixture is too rich in oxygen and not enough fuel. In the past, opening the ash pan door would cause the fire to burn robustly. Does this sound familiar and do you have any suggestions??
Granite Burner
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harmon
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC 2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: zeeklu On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:15 am

When you shut down did you clean out the stove? My TLC2000 likes to get choked with ash unless I shake it down really well once in a while .I also have a small piece of steel that I poke up through the bottom until all the grates are clear.Welcome to the forums, Chris
zeeklu
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman TLC2000
Coal Size/Type: nut
Other Heating: oil fired boiler
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC 2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Granite Burner On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 8:44 am

Hi Chris, Thanks. I think I have done an adequate job with the shaking. The other possibility here is that I am not getting enough secondary air. I have noticed that if I open the front door in combination with the ash door, I get good burning. I tried cleaning the ducts for the secondary air vents but this is difficult because the stove is hot and I am not sure of the orientation of the ducts because my view is obscured due to the bends in the ducts. Any experience with inadequate secondary air??

Thanks,
Mike
Granite Burner
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harmon
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC 2000

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Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: zeeklu On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:11 am

I'm not sure about what you mean by secondary air.I am fairly new at this. The best way to see if you have done a good job shaking is to open the ash door and look for any dark areas on the shaker grates after a good shaking. Definately an odd problem. Chris
zeeklu
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman TLC2000
Coal Size/Type: nut
Other Heating: oil fired boiler
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC 2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Granite Burner On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:44 am

Shaking is adequate because I can see a bed of hot red coals from the underside of the grates when I remove the ash pan and use the aid of a mirror. I am really at a loss to explain. It seems like adding more coal just extinguishes the fire. This is something I have never experienced.
Granite Burner
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harmon
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC 2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Devil505 On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:51 am

Try opening a window in the stove room. You may have a house that is so tight that there isn't enough combustion air to burn well. (My daughter does!) Have you added any window sealing, or such, for the cold weather?
If not that, check to make sure your exhaust pipes aren't clogged. Are you poking the fire from the top to check for air pockets?
( I always do that at every shake down with a mature fire. Just make sure you have a lively fire going b4 you do that!)
Last edited by Devil505 on Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:54 am, edited 2 times in total.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Razzler On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:52 am

When shakind the ash down don't stop when you see the first hot coal drop, keep going untill you see a nice glow in the ash pan, you should see it just by looking in the ash door. Did you try a different brand of coal?
Razzler
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Coal Size/Type: Buck

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Granite Burner On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:06 am

I get my coal delivered in bulk from the local dealer and I am not aware of any changes in his source. Given that coal is naturally occuring and prone to variation, I am starting to think that I have hit a pocket of coal that is more difficult to burn. I will try to scoop some coal from a different portion of the bin the next time I reload to see if that makes a difference. I might also go buy a bag at a different store to see how that does.

I did replace the upstairs windows over the summer and the house is probably tighter now. The stove is in the basement were I have a small window that is not very tight. I was able to burn for about 6 weeks so far this year without any issue so I think the coal might be more responsible.

Thanks for the ideas.
Granite Burner
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harmon
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC 2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Gary L On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:37 am

Do you have allot of "Shake", broken bits and pieces, of coal mixed in with the chunks you are adding?

I find when I add a shovel that has nothing but good nuggets I get a much faster ignition and better burn. A shovel with too much small stuff tends to smother the top fire for a while but eventually is consumed.

I also find that the less handeling of my coal, the less of this shake I end up with because each time I transfer it a certain amount does get chipped off and broken in to pieces.

Gary
Gary L
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Russo #1
Stove/Furnace Make: Russo

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: Devil505 On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:47 am

Make sure your secondary air sliders are full closed (down) to keep more air just going through the coal bed.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: rberq On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 11:12 am

Granite Burner wrote:My current hypothesis is that the coal itself is some how different than what I am accustomed to burning. I think the coal may contain less volatile matter.


Since you have plenty of experience with this and the former stove, I'm also going with your hypothesis that the coal is different. I am switching back and forth this year between Kimmel and Blaschak, and I have noticed the Kimmel is quicker to light off than the Blaschak. (I think of the Blaschak as being "drier" than the Kimmel.)

When I reload, it almost always kills the flames, if there were any. I generally open the air inlet all the way, then I carefully open the load door every minute or so and immediately close it slowly. At some point in the opening or closing the air/volatiles mix is right to kindle the flames, though I may have to repeat a few times before the flames are self-sustaining. As soon as they are, I close the air inlet back toward normal burn settings. Only rarely do I get a puff-back with this method, and so far no severe ones.
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: The Hesitant TLC 2000

PostBy: oliver power On: Thu Jan 01, 2009 11:33 am

rberq wrote:
Granite Burner wrote:My current hypothesis is that the coal itself is some how different than what I am accustomed to burning. I think the coal may contain less volatile matter.


Since you have plenty of experience with this and the former stove, I'm also going with your hypothesis that the coal is different. I am switching back and forth this year between Kimmel and Blaschak, and I have noticed the Kimmel is quicker to light off than the Blaschak. (I think of the Blaschak as being "drier" than the Kimmel.)

When I reload, it almost always kills the flames, if there were any. I generally open the air inlet all the way, then I carefully open the load door every minute or so and immediately close it slowly. At some point in the opening or closing the air/volatiles mix is right to kindle the flames, though I may have to repeat a few times before the flames are self-sustaining. As soon as they are, I close the air inlet back toward normal burn settings. Only rarely do I get a puff-back with this method, and so far no severe ones.
Rberq, I'll double your reply for the same reason......already has experience. I read Granite Burner's post back when he had just a few replies. Thought the same as you.
oliver power
 
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