Gert Odendaal

Solving my charcoal shortage problem

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Good day members.

As I made progress with my forging endeavor I realized I need to find a reliable charcoal source. I decided to call on my good and trusty friend Google...and came up with the following solution, actually a mix between different procedures....but ALL CREDIT to the persons who shared their knowledge on the web regarding how they make charcoal...I did use two 210 lt oil drums...one drum have a lid , the other drum was cut open on both sides..holes/grinding slots were made 2 inches from the . bottom. The same slots were grind in at the bottom of the drum with the lid where the wood will be packed in. 

The drum with the lid and the slots at the bottom sides.

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The drum with slots..

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The " afterburner drum"

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The drum --packed with pine off cuts:

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Fire started from the top to burn to the bottom where the oxygen is coming in from the bottom through the slots...

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As soon as the fire is burning strongly..put the after burner drum on top..all smoke will immediately dissipates...the gases exiting from the wood is burned in the afterburner and no smoke is evident through out the whole process..no open fires, extremely safe for small  yards in towns...

Charcoal burning in progress..notice there is no smoke..while huge flames are burning in the after burner drum..

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Different burning times produce different quantities of charcoal..I am burning it for one hour now , cut the oxygen by putting  the lid on and close the slots up with sand..

One hour burn yield the most charcoal..

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There were a few pieces that did not burn through..I will add these on the next burn,,,,

Thank you for watching...

 

Regards

 

Gert

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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As I don't like the smoke, I use a separate fire to make my coals and built a shovel out of rock shaker screen so I scoop up a bunch of coals, shake it to get rid of ash/small pieces and dump them in my forge as needed.

More than one way to skin a cat!  Have you seen the indirect method that uses the gas produced as a burner to help heat the production barrel?

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1 hour ago, BIGGUNDOCTOR said:

I take the easy route when I am low on coal , and just add wood to the fire. It turns to coals soon enough.

This is my first attempt to get fuel for my forge..I would like to use coke instead of charcoal..but I still need to burn coke for my forge ...all in good time..:D I will take this journey step by step ......on the end I need to enjoy the journey ...my way...Thomas, yes it is a method I definitely will explore..I already am looking out for a geyser to build this indirect burner inside a 210 lt drum...it is still one of two projects I need to do... 

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On Saturday I can show you some other retorts! A pity You couldn't make it for Friday as we could have done a burn in the evening! However it'll be an opportunity to strip the retort and take photos and to repost pictures that were 'lost'

Btw. "good' charcoal is black not grey:)

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Yes  Ian, but we will make time in the future for such a opportunity. Saturday visit will be a courtesy visit to get to know you . I think the type of charcoal I made in these experiments are good enough to start a fire. On the end I want to forge with coke...but making the charcoal is fun, cheap and can be use for a lot of different things...I will eventually get to the point where I will have enough knowledge to be able to do the things in a forge that I set out to do ..

Regards

Gert

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On 11/12/2015, 10:02:13, ianinsa said:

On Saturday I can show you some other retorts! A pity You couldn't make it for Friday as we could have done a burn in the evening! However it'll be an opportunity to strip the retort and take photos and to repost pictures that were 'lost'

Btw. "good' charcoal is black not grey:)

I am glad you are going to repost that. I myself am still scrounging around for a 30gal drum for the interior. 

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