coal dust

G

green park

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25 Sep 2013
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after some months of breaking up coal into small enough bits to fit my firebox, i have about half a bucket of dust too small to use. just wondering if if it can be burnt usefully somehow or do i have to bin it somewhere? if i had some way of binding it together into lumps (reconstituted) i could use it, rather like compressing sawdust into those briquettes that you see. maybe paraffin wax to mix it into a slurry and roll into little pellets? would be so messy and might be some residue left after burning. any ideas anyone? mind you, the coal is so cheap for the amount we use its not for the cost of it, just the recycling factor. martin...
 
tramcar trev

tramcar trev

all manner of mechanical apparatus...
Use it in your hearth..... or as you say cast it into blocks (Cake tin) with a bit of wax as a binder for use in an open fire...
I have to get some Coal to fill the bunker on my Steam tram and everytime I go past where there is some for the taking I dont think of it....
 
400Parker

400Parker

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18 Nov 2013
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I'm not sure if I read it right Martin, but you wrote that you've spent some months breaking up pieces of coal. You must have a lot by now! :happy:
But why don't you run on anthracite grains (or beans if you want bigger pieces)? Much easier than breaking up coal yourself and anthracite is better suited to our locos. It costs about £9 per 25kg bag. What's not to like?
Cheers!
Steve
 
G

green park

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25 Sep 2013
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i did word it a bit wrong steve, i meant i have had coal reducing sessions when required since having the loco, ending up with this dust. i use anthracite beans straight from the bag although now and then i have to break them down a bit, but i have a bag of house coal that i like to put on when fires going well and thats the stuff in large lumps. of course the lumpwood charcoal needs breaking up as well. i notice the coal catches light quicker, the smaller it is and pieces the size of small grapes seem about right. martin...
 
bobg

bobg

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3 May 2010
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Smaller pieces also burn away quicker and require topping up more often. It's about striking a balance. Be careful with house coal it can contain some nasties, but it can make nice smoke. Be sure to clean the tubes out well, and often when burning it, it tends to goo things up a bit.
 
funandtrains

funandtrains

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20 Sep 2011
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There must be a way to make small brickets from the coal dust a that is what was done and still is in many countries with the real thing. You would need to make a mold which you could compress the whetted dust into and then leave then to dry. I drill press with a rod in the end would probably make a good press but I would imagine that there would be quite a lot of black water leaking out making a mess. I would use a water soluble gum rather than wax as wax will burn fast and may leave a residue in the boiler.
 
G

green park

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25 Sep 2013
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yr right bob, i do notice the smaller pieces burn up quicker, after a few laps the fire is just a bed of low red hot embers whereas with the bigger stuff there is still some black edges burning. thats when i put on a lump or two of the house coal. i even had to sweep the chimney as it was reducing the bore with all the soot. wondered why it wasnt so free steaming. might lay off the house stuff as the anthracite smells ok and certainly leaves better ash. might try mixing a slurry and letting it dry and chop into lumps steve. if that don't work i will bury it in the garden and make a whole new coal seam for future exploitation... ;-) mart
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
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St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
Sieve it with a Flour Siever (don't let any women see you doing this) bag it and sell on Ebay for OO and other Modelers to use. Some on here may like to use some of the bits, no substitute for Real Coal on you Locomotives. I have some Bonsai Sievers so make up varying sizes for this task.
JonD
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
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Tamworth, Staffs.
So, what size should coal lumps be for putting in wagons / hoppers then ??
;) :D :happy:
 
bobg

bobg

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Loose coal being delivered to merchants could be any size, including quite large lumps.
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

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25 Oct 2009
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Looking at pictures of BR Coal Wagons in Steam Days, it used to be graded to what looks to be Big Lumps say 10-12 inches or so, medium at around half that and what appears to be Coal Dust.

Big would quite often be Locomotive Coal.
Medium could be also Locomotive or Coal Merchant, perhaps smaller for Merchant.
Dust and very small would be Power Station or Gas.

I tend to use bits at most sizes on my Locomotives, finishing off with Dust to fill the Gaps.
Jond
 
G

green park

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25 Sep 2013
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sell it!... now thats something i had'nt thought of. Actually, i would be happy to give it away for the cost of postage if i knew it would be used for something worthwhile like modelling projects. i will grade and separate it and see what we have to deal with. great idea, thank you... mart