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I Forge Iron

Finding Sewell Coal

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I need to replenish my supply of coal and wanted to go with Sewell Seam this time based on all the references about it being one of the best blacksmithing coals out there.  So, I start to scour the forums and collect the names/numbers of suppliers. 

There are a number of suppliers listed throughout various forums so I start to call around to find the best price.  Hmmm, turns out I am not looking for the best price - I am actually trying to just find a supplier that hasn't gone out of business.  Here are the folks I have called and the results so folks here don't waste time putting up a post for a supplier that now isn't available:

- Groves Coal (out of business)

- Cumberland Elkhorn (hasn't returned numerous calls)

- Greenbrier Minerals (apparently in business but have not returned multiple calls)

- Lloyd Burns (available but at $270 per ton)

- Beury Mountain Carbon (out of business)

- Pocahontas Coal and Coke (out of business)

- Sewell Mountain Coal (out of business)

Anyone have a suggestion on another supplier of Sewell Seam that may still be in business?  Also, is Poco No. No. 3 "as good" or close enough that I couldn't tell the difference?


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The coal industry has taken a major hit and with the end users such as power plants being shut down. This lead to the trucking companies, and mines closed. Then the drivers and miners were laid off and the restaurants, grocery stores, mom and pop shops closed due to lack of business. Craigslist etc was very active with 4-wheelers, boats, and extras being sold for money to run the family. The June 2016 floods in Southern West Virginia did not help as homes and in some cases entire cities were under water or washed downstream. Recovery is being measured in years from the flooding.

Running (mining) coal again will depend on the buyer wanting coal, and if it is economical for the owner to open or reopen the mine(s).

You may want to expand your search to metallurgical coal. There are two mines opening in southern WV at the VA border in the spring.

The coal you will want to look for has high BTUs, low ash, low sulfur, etc, etc. Ask for the analysis of the coal you will be getting before you buy.

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