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Hi folks,

 

How would one go about drying coal that's got wet. I've just got 6+ bags of what I believe to be bitumenous coal as it seems to burn different to the anthracite I had tried before, stickier when burning and the coke seems to form in bigger chunks.

 

The issue I have is it's been stored outside in a bunker with a broken roof, so as you'd imagine in the (not so) sunny north of England it's been rained on.

 

Also could have another 4/5 bags of coal fines, how does this burn in a forge without just falling throught to the ash dump?

 

Dan

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My current coal is shipped as fines; how you use it is to stick it in a bucket of water and then take it out in shovels/scoops, let it drain against the side of the bucket and apply it to the sides of a going forge fire.  Let it coke up in big chunks and rake it inward as needed.

 

Now what was the question about damp coal again?

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To use it, stick it in a bucket of water and then take it out in shovels/scoops, let it drain against the side of the bucket and apply it to the sides of a going forge fire. Now what was the question about damp coal again?

 

I think he needs more damp (grin)

Or to just start using the coal as is.

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Nothing wrong with your coal Dan though it'll probably need a little wetting when you use it.

 

Frosty The Lucky.

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Uh, yeah, what those guys said.

 

Also, get rid of that anthracite. It's ok for heating your house or whatever but is totally unsuitable for blacksmithing.

George

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So ..... Why is anthracite coal unsuitable for blacksmithing ????  Blacksmiths that live in areas with anthracite coal are unable to do any blacksmithing or are there no blacksmiths in areas with anthracite coal ???

 

I have also been told over and over that sulfur coal is unsuitable for blacksminthing .... That is all we have in Ohio and It has been working well for the last 5 years. I have a lifetime supply of the stuff  .... I just need to let it heat up and the sulfur seems to burn off. Wet it, then it's time to forge. I have some anthracite and I was planning to use it this weekend as it doesn't have the sulfur content like the coal from my area does.

 

Ohio Rusty ><>

The Ohio Frontier Forge

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So ..... Why is anthracite coal unsuitable for blacksmithing ????  Blacksmiths that live in areas with anthracite coal are unable to do any blacksmithing or are there no blacksmiths in areas with anthracite coal ???

 

I have also been told over and over that sulfur coal is unsuitable for blacksminthing .... That is all we have in Ohio and It has been working well for the last 5 years. I have a lifetime supply of the stuff  .... I just need to let it heat up and the sulfur seems to burn off. Wet it, then it's time to forge. I have some anthracite and I was planning to use it this weekend as it doesn't have the sulfur content like the coal from my area does.

 

Ohio Rusty ><>

The Ohio Frontier Forge

Sulfer content doesn't matter worth a hill of beans for Blacksmithing. Not sure why it's even listed on there but can only guess maybe is for the benefit of factories and power plants who burn tons per hour as opposed to tons per year as Blacksmiths do and need to worry about pollution and such.

 

As to Anthracite, go ahead and give it a try. After you're done I think you'll agree that the stuff just generally sucks.

George

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Sulfur degrades steel; not a problem with general smithing but it does matter for blades! (look why *all* modern steels tend to contain Mn).

It also degrades smiths---sulfuric acid in the lungs anyone?  Using the lowest sulfur coal you can get easily and cheaply is a good thing.

 

Ohio Rusty;  Ohio does not grow any Citrus fruits; I assume by your reasoning that nobody eats oranges there? Folks have been shipping coal around since Roman times. Coal was a common item to be shipped back in the days when the coal stove and furnace was a typically found in almost every home in the USA.  If you are going to pay to ship coal for your smithing business, might as well pay to ship the best!

 

Basically blacksmiths tend to use whatever they can get ahold of to forge with---even peat has been used to forge with (treeless, coaless areas...)!  You can forge with anthracite; it's just much more of a pain to work with---much more like coke in how you handle it.

 

Good Bituminous coal  is so much more a joy to forge with that I plan to pick up a couple hundred pounds of it at Quad-State and bring it 1500 miles home with me just to have a break from the local stuff which is mediocre, cheap and close! 

 

One of the reasons propane has been such a big deal with smiths is the lack of sulfur and the ease of sourcing and use. In the late 19th century it would have been hard to find and coal would have been easy.

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