A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: pineyguy On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 6:57 pm

I have an SF-250 too. Very good stove. Everybody else probably gave you more than enough info on burning it (good job figuring it out on your own BTW.) The only thing I wanted to mention is that if the blower is on the back, make sure to run it. You'll get a lot more heat transfer than using just that box fan. If you don't have one, you should consider it. Better to put the heat in your house than up the chimney.
pineyguy
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman SF-250, Mark 2

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: Hambden Bob On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:21 pm

You're on the Roll now,HK22 ! How Ya Feelin' regarding the Great Advice you're starting to get?
Hambden Bob
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman 1998 Magnum Stoker
Coal Size/Type: Rice-A-Roni !

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:07 pm

Welcome.

Does your stove have a built in blower?

Did you catch the person that threw coal all over the floor? 8-)
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Visit Hitzer Stoves

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: Hambden Bob On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:09 pm

Rob,You Be The Eastern Devil !! :doh: :rofl:
Hambden Bob
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman 1998 Magnum Stoker
Coal Size/Type: Rice-A-Roni !

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: jjs777_fzr On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:19 pm

Re the portable fan shown in the picture - looks like it is facing the stove (I see what looks like the handle on the right).
That may disturb the dust around the stove, and impact the natural inlet air of the stove.
...it is generally best practice to position such a portable fan in a room that is cold - and aim it towards a warmer room for optimum effect.
In other words blow colder air towards a warmer room - rather than the opposite.
If I mis-interpreted the fan positioning or if it was just temporarily sitting there...just ignore my comment :)
jjs777_fzr
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Penn Coal Stove & Chubby
Other Heating: CFM Wood Stove & Englander 25-PDVC Pellet Stove

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: helkat22 On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:17 pm

I really can't thank you all enough!

About the fan...yes, it's a 3 speed fan pointing at the side (not directly at the front) of the stove. I was told (perhaps falsely) that it helps circulate the warm air better. I will move the fan to a cooler area and have it blow toward the basement...so thanks for all that info about how the fan positioning probably isn't great!!
The stove does have a blower that runs all the time. I don't know if there are different types/powers of blowers?? The blower seems to blow the warm air out the 4 holes in the top of the stove (behind the kettle in the pic).
I am definitely going to look into the CO monitor and the thermometers for the stove itself. But if I find that the stove is running too hot, I'll likely freak out and not know what to do about it, LOL!!

So, a basic question...the spinner on the ash door. I usually have it between 2-3 turns out. Does it put out more heat the more open it is (and also a shorter burn time)? I have been keeping the spinners on the load door open about 1/2 turn. I was (I assume falsely) instructed that the more open they are, the more heat the stove would put out, so for a few days I had them open 2-3 turns as well...but read that they should be practically closed, so that's where I'm at now.

Thanks so much for all your help!!
helkat22
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF 250

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: Hambden Bob On: Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:06 pm

Relax,how's the House temperature in your Home? A Sunday Night with Big Time Cold and Work Coming for a Monday isn't time to make changes in Combustion Air Knob Settings. Let's work on that when you can make an adjustment and check on the Stoves Burn every 15 minutes for an hour or so. 2-3 turns out on the underfire air knob on the Ash Door sounds a little high open to me....Again,Relax,,,You're doing good,but when you can do that monitor the stove routine that I mentioned we may start closing the Ash Door knob down a little.Stay with it,you're doing good! :up:
Hambden Bob
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman 1998 Magnum Stoker
Coal Size/Type: Rice-A-Roni !

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: jjs777_fzr On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:16 am

I agree with taking things slow and I don't want to keep throwing comments out - but I didn't read anyone bring this point up.
Isn't that stove a sf-250 duel fuel ?
If so then this stove can burn wood or coal.

That's why they have the two air inlets on the load door - primarily for burning wood.
If burning coal I'd imagine the load door air inlets should be nearly shut 100% - perhaps just 1/8th open per dial.
The only air inlet for coal would be that found on the ash door as coal requires air from the bottom - traveling up through the coal bed.

If burning wood you would close the bottom air 100% and only use the load door air knobs.


I look forward to other sf250 owners critiquing my comments.
This is where thermometers help - for example - while you adjust the air inlets - you would be able to see how the stove reacts.
Mind you...coal reacts very slowly - so if you change the air dials - you need to wait at least 15min to 30min to see any change.
jjs777_fzr
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Penn Coal Stove & Chubby
Other Heating: CFM Wood Stove & Englander 25-PDVC Pellet Stove

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: pineyguy On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:06 am

You don't need the load door knobs open at all when burning coal. The exception is when you put a fresh load of coal on. I open one of them a couple turns until the gases light off. The furthest I ever have my ash door knob open is around 2 turns . That's not for safety or anything. It just seems like where I can balance heat output and burn time. Your experience will vary depending on draft, etc. It makes sense that you had yours 3 turns open, because with the upper knobs open you were losing draft through the coal bed and needed to be further open to get the same amount of air drawn through.
pineyguy
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman SF-250, Mark 2

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: helkat22 On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:16 am

I think technically you can burn coal and wood, but the EPA says no wood! I do use wood to get the fire going when it's almost burned out, though.
Thanks so much for the info on the upper spinners being primarily for wood and the lower for coal :) You guys are gonna make me a pro in no time!!

My house is hanging out in the low 70s, which is perfect. Let's see where I'm at when I get home from work this afternoon!! I turned the lower spinner down to about one and three quarter turns.

And Rob...yes, I have a mess!! Most of it was already there, but I admittedly am not the swiftest at making sure all the coal actually makes it into the fire!! Sometimes I toss it in and it rolls back out!!

Thanks again!
helkat22
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Harman SF 250

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: franco b On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:28 am

helkat22 wrote:Thanks so much for the info on the upper spinners being primarily for wood and the lower for coal

Just to repeat what others have said. Some air over the fire is good and very important after loading a fresh batch of coal. All batch loading stoves have the potential to puff back if too much unburned gas accumulates in the stove and then puffs or even explodes. Best way to avoid this is to load in several smaller batches. Fresh coal when heated gives off this gas.

Even with a mature fire a small amount of air from the loading door can help to burn off carbon monoxide that results from air starvation in the deep bed of burning coal. With a moderate fire there should be blue flame most of the time but not the large quantity as from a fresh load.
franco b
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: V ermont Castings 2310, Franco Belge 262
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood Modern Oak 114
Coal Size/Type: nut and pea

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: biggerpatterson On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 3:43 pm

Don't forget to clean the little blower on your stove for better air flow. I shut mine off and use an old tooth brush to get the accumulated dust loose then use the vac . If you have pets , it's amazing how much pet hair will get in the fan.
biggerpatterson
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Baker Contender II
Other Heating: Oil to gas conversion hot air furnace
Stove/Furnace Make: Baker
Stove/Furnace Model: Contender II

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: jjs777_fzr On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 5:17 pm

helkat22 wrote:.... I do use wood to get the fire going when it's almost burned out, though.
.......


I mentioned it once before in another post - if I find I have almost lost the fire - have a bag of wood pellets on hand.
Throw in just a cup full and it will help get the fire going again rather quickly - enough to allow you to reload with a couple scoops of coal.
At less than $5 for a 40lb bag - one bag lasts quite some time.
I've been able to save my coal fire when barely a few coals are glowing.

Careful not to throw in more than a cup full - or smother the coal bed too much with pellets or you may get a mild poof when things reignite.
jjs777_fzr
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Penn Coal Stove & Chubby
Other Heating: CFM Wood Stove & Englander 25-PDVC Pellet Stove

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: Lightning On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 5:35 pm

helkat22 wrote:Thanks for the replies thus far!! First off, I am not a Bro! A Sis, maybe, but definitely not a Bro!!

Sorry Sweets, yer screen name shoulda gave me a clue :oops:
Looks like your in good hands... Good luck, you'll get the hang of it.. :D
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut/Stove Size Mix

Re: A little overwhelmed! New to coal stove (Harman SF 250)

PostBy: Hambden Bob On: Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:49 pm

Hi HK22 ! Let's recap a little....How was the House temp when you got Home. I see you started messin' with your air controls late at night. Did your stove still perform well and keep the House warm when you woke up?
Hambden Bob
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman 1998 Magnum Stoker
Coal Size/Type: Rice-A-Roni !

Visit Hitzer Stoves