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So I ordered some Anthracite after getting sick of covering my forge to avoid charcoal sparks. I wanted bituminous but the smoke would be an issue. I've only used charcoal up till now due to my locations distance from mined coal. What I wanna know is; how long will a square foot of Anthracite burn for? Also, once the airflow is stopped on lit Anthracite, how long until it goes out? And lastly, does it help to break up nut sized Anthracite or is that unnecessary?

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It is kind of hard to answer burn length questions as that has many factors:  1. How big is your firepot.  2. How large of a fire are you doing.  3. Are you running with a full blast of air all of the time  4. A "square foot" of coal is not a quantity, its an area.  Did you mean to say a "cubic foot".  4. Anthracite will burn as long as it is getting air from somewhere(think of all of the home and heating stoves).  5.  What size coal is nut size?  Peanut or walnut?  Either should work. 

 

I run a mix of Anthracite and Bituminous to make my Bituminous last longer.

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Short version? Time depends, but it'll last longer than charcoal and shorter than bituminous. It's cheap, but it takes more air. This also makes more of an oxidizing flame if you put the work right in the flame. The smoke from bituminous is awful at first, but clears up pretty quickly once it's no longer "green".

 

If you don't use a cheater like lump charcoal to start the fire, you'll need some of your anthracite broken up to light it. Anthracite is very tricky to light at first, when compared to bituminious or charcoal. Once lit though, it'll break up if you through the larger stuff on top of the flame. It can spit small pieces out when it breaks up though, so be careful.

 

You'll also want to keep a close eye on your work. Since it takes more air to keep going well, it tends to run kind of hot. The good news is, there's usually less clinker (at least in the one I get).

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. The smoke from bituminous is awful at first, but clears up pretty quickly once it's no longer "green".

 

 

 

 

The only time you burn Bituminous is the first time you start a fire. You will never again at any time in your lifetime burn bituminous coal, as you will always have all this coke to burn. The bituminous turns into coke from the heat of the fire. You don't burn it to make coke.

 

I guess my point is that the smoke is a moot point. If you have loads of coal smoke from green coal, something is amiss.

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Years ago not knowing any better I bought a bunch of anthracite the coal was huge chunks so I gave the kids a few bucks to sit with a hammer and brake it up. I worked just fine. Not many clinkers. It took a lot less coal over charcoal.

As for smoke it is only when you light a bunch of green coal dose it smoke. Once it turns to coke not smoke

Some times you just have to go with arability and price

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