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Alaska Coal Stove Identification

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by justinh, Sep 26, 2006.

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  1. justinh

    justinh New Member

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    Hello,

    I just purchased an Alaska coal stove manufactured sometime around 1980.
    The stove measures 19" wide X 19" deep by 34.5" tall (measured from the feet to the top).
    There is a single door on the top (not top loading, door on front of stove) used for loading the coal and has a sliding damper.
    The ash tray also has a damper, and had a built in handle when slid out of the stove.
    There are four feet, and one foot has a bolt used for stabilizing the stove.
    The stove has no glass.

    The stove had never been used by the previous owner. He believes he purchased it sometime around 1980.

    Just wondering if you could help identify which model this stove is and give me all the info that you can about it (what type of coal it burns, how much it holds, tips for burning, etc).

    I can post a picture if anybody needs it.

    Thanks for any and all info that you can gather.

    Justin
    justinh@yahoo.com

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  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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  3. justinh

    justinh New Member

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    Almost forgot to mention, I did contact Alaska and this was their response:

    "We have no information on the older wood/coal stoves that were made that long ago. Sorry."

    Justin
  4. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Methinks your best hope is Forum member Corie. Coal burner par excellance and should be along soon.

    If he isn't under a welding hood finishing that stove.
  5. Corie

    Corie Minister of Fire

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    justin,

    I've got a pretty good idea of what stove this is. However if you could throw up a picture for me of the exterior and the grates on the interior I can give you a 100% answer.

    Without a picture though, I can tell you a few things. First off, I don't believe there was an Alaska hand fired stove that burned anything smaller than chestnut sized coal. Generally the style of grates that I can recall seeing in these stoves has slots that are too far apart to allow good burning charecteristics with pea sized coal and below.

    That said, like most stoves, you'll achieve the longest burning fires with stove sized coal, but it can be quite a bear to light and most distributors won't bring it. Chestnut is a great size coal to burn and you can get it in bagged and bulk form.

    Coal burning tips that craig has listed on the website here are great for lighting a fire in that stove, just like most. Has the stove never been used at all?
  6. justinh

    justinh New Member

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    Wow, you guys are amazing! I had this same question posted on another board for about a month without any response. Anyway, I think that you're right about either using stove coal or chestnut. When I saw the size of the grates, I began to worry if even Chestnut was going to be too small.

    The stove was never used, not sure if you can see how clean the fire brick is from the photo. I paid a bit under $500 for the stove.
    I figure that was a cheap enough price to give this coal burning thing a try. I almost fainted when I saw the prices of the new Harmans and Alaska's.

    Thanks again,
    Justin

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  7. Corie

    Corie Minister of Fire

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    I have to tell you this is a new one on me. I wonder if craig or one of the other members might recognize it?

    Ultimately though, the model number isn't important. I assume that grate is made of solid square bar and simply rocks back and forth or pivots to allow the removal of ash from the burning coal.

    That said, it looks like it'll be a little demon of a coal heater. It has everything a good coal stove has, and nothing it doesn't need (Like a window).

    You won't have any problem burning chesnut on those grates, even though the spaces look big. The spaces on most russo's look enormous, but once you get a load of coal in there its not a problem at all.

    The air control on the bottom door is the one you'll use to control the burn rate of the coal. The air control on the top door should be set to a fairly small opening and left alone. It is just there to provide a bit of air over the top of the coal bed to allow secondary combustion of unburned gases before they make their way up the stack. The door air control could also be used if you decided to burn wood in the thing, but to best honest, the size of the firebox makes me think that coal is your best option.

    Let me know what else you need to know!
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