Hi everyone!! I'm a newbee here. I'm happy to have found this place. I am a member of a lot of clubs like car racing and so on, but I couldn't even imagine there were a fireplace forum!! Anyway, I love making fire and I'm so lucky to have a fireplace at home. It's just an old style open fireplace built in the house, you know. It's usually for wood burning, but the problem is wood burns up too fast and I would like to burn coal to keep warm cheeper and longer. Please advise me. My concerns are more towards safty than ease of burning. 1. Is coal safe to burn in an open fireplace? I mean, doesn't it product harmful gas like carbon monoxide when it burns? I know that the gas can be fatal if you take enough of it. Some people suggested using soft coal or briquettes but again, do they produce dangerous gas when they burn? I guess I'm concerned because my fireplace has no door or cover. If harmful gas is produced it seems that it will flow right out and inflict damage to people in the area. 2. I read from this site that it is not easy to burn hard coal in an open fireplace. But is it possible? If possible, any advice? It's good that there is a place for me to ask these questions. Thanks to all of you.