Three days and I'm out

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Mountainman37 On: Mon Jan 12, 2009 9:21 am

Thanks, Devil505, that live link worked just fine and I read everything there!

A lot of discussion on pea vs nut and compacting and so on. I have slavaged coal I got for free...just my labor to shovel it...and it's big stuff. I started using it and it is doing very well so far! We'll know better tomorrow (day 4) and the next day (day 5). My bagged coal is nut. I do think the decent size of that Hitzer firebox is what allows burning the big "stove size" coal.

And this is day three...the bewitching day for me. Morning maintenance went well with good response and a "roaring" fire...I get up to 600f surface temp before shaking. I went well past the first few embers to where I had a good overall glow.

Following advice on this forum I stoke only one side at a time and let the fire come back after the first stoke, then after the second stoke and then before the "last step" which is close the ash door.

the fire was so vibrant that it continued to 700F after the ash door was closed. The thermostatic damper was shut tight as it is set to run at 475. I stayed with it, until the fire turned the corner at 750 and started back down. At that point I closed my direct vent (a Hitzer thing I think) for better economy of burn.

The poking part is good news....that is it not forbidden! I will not be afraid now to watch for grey areas as you folks have advised and use my poker!

I'm real bad when it comes to computers....can someone tell me how to post a picture of my stove here, the way I see a lot of guys have?

Mountainman37
Mountainman37
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 55 U.L.

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: JIMTORL On: Mon Jan 12, 2009 1:12 pm

I burn PEA in my 503 and after 2 months without losing the fire it still looks good.
I shake with short choppy strokes until red embers fall if I see dark spots on the bed I shake the daylights out of it until a lot of embers drop. That seems to take care of the built up ash.
Jim
JIMTORL
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Cato On: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:22 am

Here is some of the tools I use when shaking my stove down. The poker and rake and two sizes of 'pokers' which someone posted on this forum awhile ago! They (can't remember who) recommended making a tool out of metal campaign (political) sign frames (large ga.) and bending them to a certain length on the 90 (4in.) I added the 'handle'!

I use the small 'pokers' to clean out the grate from the bottom after shaking until I see red embers coming down and see a 'glow ' in the ash pan. I then take out the ash pan and use them to clean more ash off the grates (from the bottom). After that I add a layer of nut - let it catch with the ash door open and when it's going good close it down and empty the ash pan. I leave the air intake on the ash door open 2 0r 3 turns while I'am emptying the pan and when I come back the fire is going good enough to add more coal. I follow the same procedure (leaving the ash door open for a min or two) and then turn the air-intake on the ash cleanout door to 1/2 to 1 turn. The stove 'levels off' in about 20 min and maintains a stove temp of 400-500 and stack temp. of 150. The stove room is around 80 and the living room (two rooms away) is 70 or so!
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Cato
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman Magnafire
Stove/Furnace Model: Harman I

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Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Mountainman37 On: Tue Jan 13, 2009 6:31 am

Thanks, Kato, good pics! I can see what I have to make now....all I could come up with in a hurry was a metal coat hanger and it's not beefy enough!

and I need to learn how to post pictures here!
Mountainman37
Mountainman37
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 55 U.L.

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Devil505 On: Tue Jan 13, 2009 9:46 am

Mountainman37 wrote:The poking part is good news....that is it not forbidden! I will not be afraid now to watch for grey areas as you folks have advised and use my poker!


Glad things are working out!

As far as poking is concerned, some people do it from the top (like me) while other poke up from under the shaker grates. I don't think it matters how you do it, as long as you find the air pockets & get the dead ash out! ;) My stove makes it difficult & messy to poke from under the grates but my first stove (a Better N' Bens) was easy to do that way.
Everyone needs to find what works best for them & their equipment.
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: imrich31 On: Tue Jan 13, 2009 11:00 am

I had the same problem, fire would go for three days or so then go out no matter how much shaking I did or how much air I added.
Swithced to pea coa, and burned great. Problem went away, perfect fire.
imrich31
 
Stove/Furnace Model: keystoker

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Mountainman37 On: Thu Jan 15, 2009 9:25 am

Well, my Hitzer is still on the same fire and it's day SIX.....and counting!

Thank you to all for the great tips....aggressive ash shaking and judicious poking!

I run my thermostat to maintain a stove surface temp of 475F and it's been wonderful. When I open my ash door to start my routine, I wait for the fire to freshen up to 550-600F and then shake. The fire at that point is always lively and flaming well!

I only stoke one side at a time and wait for the new coal to cool the stove down and then come back up. Stoking just one side at a time has eliminated my (scary) blow backs!

How do I get my stove picture on the side where my name is?
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Mountainman37
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 55 U.L.

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Devil505 On: Thu Jan 15, 2009 9:37 am

Mountainman37 wrote:How do I get my stove picture on the side where my name is?


User Control Panel/Profile/Edit Avatar

(you may have to re size your pic
Devil505
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: TLC-2000

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Rob R. On: Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:06 pm

You may want to consider adjustable elbows on your stove pipe in order to eliminate that 90 degree bend at the end, I suspect you will have a lot of fly ash accumulation at the elbow before the thimble.

I know what you are saying about the puff backs, I have gotten some pretty impressive ones in my Hitzer. They occur when a lot of fresh coal is added and the automatic damper opens wide to increase the stove temp. The coal will burn from the bottom up and when it finally gets going good enough to cause the automatic damper to close, the fire keeps building and causes the damper to close completely. At that point you have a very hot fire with fresh coal on top, and no air passing through the stove...the gases build in the stove and when the damper finally opens a little...boom! The solution, as you've discovered is to not cover the entire firebox with fresh coal.

My technique is to fill about 75% of the firebox, leave the direct damper open and then top it off an hour later once the bulk has started to burn. Leaving the spinner on the loading door open about 1 turn helps as well.

Does the Model 55 have a secondary combustion chamber like the 82?

Edit: Another thing you can do to help minimize the chance of a puff back is top off the stove more often, if your schedule permits. I shake/reload my stove every 12 hours, it will go longer...but then I have to add more coal, which encourages the situation I described above. If I get detained and let the stove burn really far down, I follow your method and load one side then the other.
Last edited by Rob R. on Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: sharkman8810 On: Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:20 pm

I know the puffbacks on these can be pretty good, i saw flames through my baro in the pipe, and it scared the wife. I dont flip the lever to run the flue gasses into the secondary burn chamber until everything is caught and kinda settled (like 1/2 hour or so). It lets the gasses escape quicker and build up less is my thought on this, than wait for the draft to pull them through the secondary burn chamber. The knob at 1 turn is a good number, i did it a little higher like 3 turns,and it can get alot of air for top combustion of volatiles and make the situation worse, especially if you have alot of fresh coal.
sharkman8810
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 82 ul
Coal Size/Type: nut
Stove/Furnace Make: hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 82 u.l.

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Mountainman37 On: Thu Jan 22, 2009 7:43 am

Hi Markviii,

Sorry to be so long getting back to the forum, I am not on the computer everyday and things can get hectic and many days go by before I can get back on. And then there is so much new stuff to read! Like the stuck grate! I just read that thread 'cause I had some close calls but have been able to muscle my grate and get past the thing.

Yes the smaller Hitzer 55 has a baffle with the direct vent damper. When closed (normal run postion) the gases have to flow down that baffle and pass within an inch or so of the burning bed and turn up after passing under it, in order to exit the stove.

I am now day 13 of a constant burn and loving it!

You mentioned blow backs and I've had them. I think I am avoiding them now, with a different technique. I only tend my stove twice a day, morning and night. After the fire freshens with the ash door open-I don't bother to change the auto damper....used to crank that up to high and then put it back, but don't bother anymore and leave it my setting for a 450F surface temp on the stove.

I "open up my stove" to do the tending twice a day. Open the spinner to 3/8" out or so, open the direct vent and open the ash door. Leave firebox door shut, of course.

When the fire freshens up to 550F I will shake and then stoke one side of the Hitzer and wait. Ash door remains open the whole process. I wait for the temp to dip, which it does due to the new coal and then come back up....and all the way back up to 550 at which point I open the firebox door and stoke the other side and close the firebox door and wait. The direct vent damper remains open thru out, like the ash door.

Wait for the second stoking of coal to get all the way back to 550. Yes, the auto damper is shut tight since my setting is 450 but I have found the fire getting back to 550 takes enough time to heat the coal and catch it and has enough time to drive off the majority of the volitiles that cause the blow backs.

So, after my second stoking and wait for the fire to come back to 550 I close the ash door. And I am very happy to report all is quiet re little explosions. There may be gentle "fluffing" but no puffs, no rattle of the auto damper! The first three to five minutes seems to be the crucial time. If I get by that period, there will be no puff backs. That's been my experience now for several days and "tendings".

Let me say at this point, that the advice to never cover a coal fire completely with new coal is right on...the flames of the burning coal act as "burners" for the volitile gas that accumulates. But I think we have a different situation with our Hitzers in that even loading one side, let it catch and load the second side does not prevent blowbacks if the fire hasn't had time to burn off the volitiles, because...we can have all the nice flames in the world but when we close the ash door, they are going to settle way down as the auto damper is still closed! The air supply from the spinner is important and having the direct vent open is important, but if the fire isn't hot enough, the volitiles will build a bit and get ignited causing the unwanted blow backs.

So, I've found, so far, I get no blow backs if I wait after each stoking for my fire to get back to 550F stove temp, which takes 15 to 25 min so patience is required, but it's worth it for no blow backs.

So, after the second stoke and climb to 550 and shut the ash door, I wait for the cool down....direct vent is open and the spinner remains open. It can take 20 min or longer for the temp to drop to 450 where the auto damper finally opens to take control. At that point I close my direct vent damper and close the spinner down to about 1/8" open and I am done for the next 12 hours.

I am one very happy coal burner at this point!
Mountainman37
Mountainman37
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 55 U.L.

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: Mountainman37 On: Thu Jan 22, 2009 7:58 am

Thanks, Devil505, for info on getting picture on my profile....I've got to figgure out how to resize as I tried to upload it and got the message it has to be between......

I'll try to work on it!
Mountainman37
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 55 U.L.

Re: Three days and I'm out

PostBy: PC 12-47E On: Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:28 am

Mountainman37 wrote:Well, my Hitzer is still on the same fire and it's day SIX.....and counting!



How do I get my stove picture on the side where my name is?


Hi Mountainman37, Check your "new messages".

RS.
PC 12-47E
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Estate Heatrola, Jotul 507

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