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 Post subject: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:24 am 
I have a dumb question.
Why did locomotives need to use the Wooten Firebox to burn anthracite? Why wouldn't a Belpaire or another work?


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 12:05 pm 
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Miner Dave,

I split this off into a new topic. I suspect it has to do with air flow but that is a guess.

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 12:11 pm 
Thanks for that. I was going too, but I guess I clicked the wrong button.


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 6:29 pm 
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Miner Dave wrote:
I have a dumb question.
Why did locomotives need to use the Wooten Firebox to burn anthracite? Why wouldn't a Belpaire or another work?


The Wooten Firebox was not designed to burn anthracite but rather anthracite culm. John Wooten, Superintendent for Philadelphia and Reading Railroad (later the Reading) designed the firebox to burn culm as a cheap and plentiful source of fuel for their locomotives. It was first used on the camelback locomotives.

M.T

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 6:52 pm 
I knew about the camelbacks andthe Reading, but not why. Thanks for the info! Didn't the Pennsy experiment with Wotten fireboxes? Why would you need a special firebox for culm?


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 8:34 pm 
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Miner Dave wrote:
I knew about the camelbacks andthe Reading, but not why. Thanks for the info! Didn't the Pennsy experiment with Wotten fireboxes? Why would you need a special firebox for culm?


Too much air flow will blow culm right out the stack, Wooten's design corrected that. You can burn high-grade anthracite in any locomotive but you need to have the correct grate design. Bituminous is a far more cheaper fuel than anthracite and that's why railroads preferred it as a fuel source.

M.T.

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 8:38 pm 
how did he fix it?


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 8:49 pm 
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Miner Dave wrote:
how did he fix it?


He designed the wider fire box with a very smaller grate opening. Created a slower burning fire with slower air flow.

M.T

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 9:10 pm 
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The common misconception with the Wootten Firebox is that it was exclusively designed to burn only pure anthracite, when in fact, it was designed to burn culm, the lowest quality, highest rock content, and unfit for market (otherwise waste), form of anthracite.

M.T.

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:40 am 
why wouldn't the Belpare work? Were the Wotten's hand-bombers, or did they have automatic stokers?


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 12:08 am 
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Miner Dave wrote:
why wouldn't the Belpare work? Were the Wotten's hand-bombers, or did they have automatic stokers?


Again, a Belpaire will operate on high-grade anthracite and even coke for that matter. High-grade anthracite is very, very, very expensive compared to bituminous. The railroads, being a business, would use the fuel most cost effective for their operations. It all boils down to keeping the shareholders happy. If you lower operating costs by using a cheaper fuel source, the result is a higher net income, which increases the stock price and dividend yield for the shareholders.

No Wootens I know of had automatic stokers, it was all done by hand.

M.T.

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:42 am 
Wow. What was the average grate area for a camelback?


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:19 pm 
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Miner Dave wrote:
Wow. What was the average grate area for a camelback?


I know on Reading camelbacks, depending on the model, grate area would vary from 68-92 square feet.

M.T

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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:10 pm 
Damn. And the fireman had to hand fire them! They definately were real men! I mean, think of it. You are exposed at the back of a locomotive, with only a small roof to keep the rain and snow off of you, with no side rails to keep you from falling off of the locomotive. And to top it all off, you are bouncing around at 50 mph. I don't envy those guys.


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 Post subject: Re: Burning Anthracite in Locomotives ?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 11:31 pm 
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We're the Camelbacks most for switching?

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