Harman --coal gets stuck in shaker

Boby HuffardDecember 6, 2007

Does anyone have this problem? We have a Harman coal stove (Mark II). The former owner told us he burned "nut coal". The coal supplier verifies that this was what the former owner of this home always burned. We frequently run into problems with a piece of coal sticking in the shaker and the only solution is to let it all burn down and restart the fire. What a pain! Last season we had the stove taken out and serviced (new firebox, check the shaker mechanism and handle, etc) thinking that would fix the problem.

Any thoughts or suggestions?


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Rock the grates with short choppy strokes back and forth, just enough to shake the ash through the grates. This won't allow the coal to drop and wedge between the grates.
It takes a little practice, but I'm sure you'll be much happier.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2007 at 6:27PM
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Boby Huffard

We try to be very careful about how much we move the handle back and forth. How many degrees off center would you recommend? We think the problem may be in the wide variation in the size of our lumps of coal. Is this common?

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 9:08AM
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That's a common occurance with any coal stove that you have to rock the grates back and forth to shake the ash. If you can apply enough force the grates are strong enough to crush the coal that may have come lodged in between.

Besides the short strokes that was suggested above, you should also have a poker handy to dislodge any coal that may get stuck.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 9:56AM
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Another tool to have on hand is a bar that you can use to lift the grates by levering them from the bottom, as you try to move the grates. As we all do get coal or clinkers stuck in the grates. Those short choppy strokes could be spoken of as rattling the handle so that the coal bed vibrates. If you watch the coal bed as you move the shaker handle, you will see the bed seem to move up and down. Slow and deliberate works, and it is not necessary to get every smidgen of ash out, I try to stop just before I could see red coals fall.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2011 at 12:44AM
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