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let us know,  anthracite is supposes to e better than bitumanis less ash and moisture.  just about pure coke.

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Anthracite coal is not close to pure coke ("just about pure coke.")  Anthracite is a more mature, harder coal than bituminous coal.  To get coke, both need to be burned to get rid of the water, oils, sulfur and other impurities in the coal, leaving essentially nearly pure carbon.

Edited by arkie

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Anthracite also needs more air. I have to keep the blower going nonstop at a fairly good flow to keep anthracite burning. With Bituminous coal, I can shut down or significantly reduce the air flow and the fire doesn't die. Also fire maintenance is more important with Anthracite. It's harder to light and if you let the fire burn down too low, it's harder to maintain an even heat as you dump more fuel on.

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This coal was great, my only complaint was that it was wet in the bag. I imagine it was stored outside at some point.

After about 15min heating out the moisture it really took off. I was using the "rice" size, someone came in and cleaned out the entire pallet of "nut" size before I could get to it. There is a little smoke during take off but once the fire hits there is minimal smoke and ash. Works up to a hot hot hot temp in no time, I was able to weld 3/8" bar stock in 6-8 min heat time, and accidentally burned some stock during conversation. I used maybe 2lbs to start, did not feed any more coal and was able to keep the forge running for a solid hour, the remaining coal was level with my brake drum. I shut everything down, and an hour later I was able to come out and kick the hairdryer on and fired it right back up!

For those of you surviving on Cowboy chunk or Royal Oak, FIND A TRACTOR SUPPLY NEAR YOU! 6 bucks for 40lbs is way better than 20lbs of half-assed coal for $15.

The store clerk tells me that this is the first time they have ever carried coal, and they plan to get regular shipments.

 

Any questions? And if pics are requested I'll take some tomorrow.

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Pics are always wanted!!!  Good to hear it worked.  $6 beats $25 for 50lb bag of bitumanis " blacksmithing coal".  How was ash and clinker,   I take it coked up well if you were welding with it.

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Ash was very minimal, as far as clinkers I don't know. They are still under about a pound of coal. After it coked it was very hot, but getting the moisture out was a pain. I'll get some pics probably tomorrow evening.

This is my first time using coal vs hardwood lump coal, so take what I say with a grain of salt. I did have another problem I forgot to mention. My brake drum forge likes to "belch" when I have the blower off. Any way to prevent this? I did not have this problem with lump.

Thanks!

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Technician, "hardwood lump" is charcoal, not coal, if you are describing it correctly.  They burn differently.  The belching may be similar to the "backfire" that sometimes occurs with bellows wherein the bellows will suck fire back into the bellows...not too sure just what it is you are describing.  I had never heard of a brake drum forge belching, but there is always a first.

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Don't know about the belch, but could be from stopping the blower or a gas pocket.  I checked with the buyers at my TSC and she said that they will have in stock through out the burning season for pellet stoves.  So for us that is though February or March then back again in the fall.  She also said if I need a pallet or more she will work with the price some.  That is $300 a pallet if she wants To work on the price, I won 't stop her but 300 bucks a pallet is a heck of a deal!!!! My last pallet cost me $1200.  That's not including the 6 hours of driving

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Yes the belching is a backfire. It's not violent enough to move the coal but the noise is startling, especially with your back to the fire. Is there a way to prevent this from happening?

 

Matto, I agree. The price is definitely worth it. My only other option is to buy Bituminous in bulk, at $70 a ton, but I've got no means to transport or store that amount, and it's an hour away,

Edited by Technician.Austin

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forbidden again...

The belching is caused by the formation of coal gas caused by your wet coal. You can prevent it by keeping the blower running on low to prevent the build up of gas in the air piping.

 

I have a link to a thread here on the subject, but the site keeps telling me I'm forbidden if I try and post it.

Edited by DSW

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It looks like my local TSC has both rice and nut in stock. I've never worked with anthracite; any suggestions which would be better? (NB: I'm working a rivet forge with a lever-cranked blower, doing small-scale hobby work and toolmaking.)

Edited by JHCC

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Thanks for the info - I also heat my house with a rice coal stove. The price they have may be cheaper than the local coal yard - I'll have to check this years prices. The rice coal a lot of times is coated with oil to cut down on dust and is wet (I believe they wet it to add weight for the bags profit margin in sales lol) - so it will need to burn off all the contaminates at first.

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I think the nut coal would be more ideal for forging than the rice size. Rice coal is a little difficult to manage in the coal pan around the fire pot. I feel I get a more even heat though.

Try and see what works in your set up and let us know.

I do believe that there may be more than just water on the coal. It does feel a little oily and the smoke is dark, but Like i said earlier, I've never used real coal until now. Hopefully I will have time for some pictures and such tonight.

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Well, I got a sack of the nut coal. The sample that they had sitting out showed chunks two or three times the size of a Brazil nut. I figured that I can always break it into smaller pieces if I have to. 

To be honest, it looks and feels to the hand a lot like the last sack of blacksmith coal I had a couple of decades ago. I'll let you know how it burns if I ever get a spare minute to fire up the forge again.

Edited by JHCC

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First off thanks for the info. I just called the local tsc and he said they don't carry it but can order it in. He said he could get it by the pallet. I said I just wanted one bag to try and he said they would have one bag by Saturday. For some reason that TSC is awesome to deal with. We have one closer that is a real pain to deal with and I'll never darken their door again even for a bag of coal. I hope this pans out. I can get good coal over in OK but they aren't open on weekends. I've been tryin to get there for over 6 months. Thanks again for the information.

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Funny seeing this thread. I just stopped by my local TSC on the way home last night. Made my purchase and saw a pallet load of coal right at the door. Stopped me dead in my tracks. I will be going back and picking some up next week.

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Progress report: as expected, tough to get lit. Very smoky at first, but clean burning once the oily coating burned off. (I suspect the oil is to keep the dust down.)

I had a hard time getting a forging heat with the hand blower, but then I realized that I could put the nozzle of my electric leaf blower up the ash dump and keep a constant airflow. Success! Burned hot and clean. Little clinker. I wasn't watching at first and burned a corner of the metal, so getting to welding temperature shouldn't be hard. Overall, very happy.

Here's the rivet forge with the blower:

 

IMG_20150918_193250671.jpg

Edited by JHCC

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We burned the nut coal at our open forge last night and it worked great!! I think if you make a mix between the nut and rice it would be great.  It was a hot fire and keep going great.  We only had a silver dollar size clinker left when we broke down the fire. 

 

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 I think if you make a mix between the nut and rice it would be great.

Oh, forgot to add: they only had the nut coal at my TSC. Most of the lumps were about walnut-size, but the occasional larger one needed a whack with the corner of a cross pein to break into smaller bits.

No appreciable coking. Come to think of it, I didn't see any coking at all.

Edited by JHCC

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When your coal burns off the impurities, you should have coke left.  The coal is heavier and denser than coke.  The coke is light, like styrofoam.  That's what you should/will forge with.  You probably would have a better forging fire with the nut size after it converts to coke.

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When your coal burns off the impurities, you should have coke left.  The coal is heavier and denser than coke.  The coke is light, like styrofoam.  That's what you should/will forge with.  You probably would have a better forging fire with the nut size after it converts to coke.

 

except that anthracite doesn't coke....

Basically, yeah. This anthracite is behaving differently than soft (bituminous) coal; more like an incredibly dense charcoal. Unlike soft coal, it doesn't expand and meld together into a mass of coke. It's more like the rocks just start glowing, and the more air you put on them, the brighter they glow. 

Edited by JHCC

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except that anthracite doesn't coke....

Oooops...skipped over the part where he said he had anthracite....my bad.  Thanks for the correction.

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