not true freddy, i have burned both, i have easy access to both, but anthracite is a little more $$. I would prefer bituminous in a hand- fired or a stoker. once you know how to burn it properly the fact that it has volitiles and produces some soot does not create any additional mess or problems. after you know how to burn it properly with the right setup/equiptment the only dirt/ dust issue is the same between both coals, coal dust from loading and ash dust from ash removal. bituminous coal is more forgiving and easier to burn in many ways than anthracite. I would burn bit coal even if they cost the same $$ per btu. there are certain considerations that make burning bit coal less desierable (unless you have a stoker) such as living in very close proximity to others or an inapropriate setup for bit coal (less than 8" chimney, poor stove etc) but that is really it in my opinion.
the main problem is there are very few purpose built bituminous coal burning stoves or stokers. most people that do burn bituminous burn it in combo wood/coal furnaces, woodstoves, or anthracite stoves. whenver you try to burn somthing in an appliance not well designed for it you are not going to have a very fun experiance; especially compared to burning anthracite in a stove/boiler etc. that was well designed for it from the ground up. think of it this way- how much would you like anthracite if you kept trying to burn it successfully in a fisher wood stove?? you might get it to "kind of" burn, but not well and it would be an ungodly hassle, this combined with a lack of knowledge on how to fire bit coal properly is why most people prefer anthracite. take greg and his bit stoker for example; if he would have installed it in refractory hearth and allowed a 4" ash bed to form around it like it was designed, he probably would have enjoyed the experiance much more, but without that type of installation for a stoker that was designed for it, coke trees would form and cause problems with the burn. bituminous issues are adressed by equiptment that is designed apropriately for it and proper firing techniques, then it burns as well or better and easier than anything else.