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1980 VC Vigilant - stovepipe damper or not...and other ?'s.

Post in 'Vermont Castings & CDW Dutchwest older Models' started by spolleypt, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    Great site for a newbe like me to get lots of info on how to opperate my new stove...Thanks
    Purchased a home with a VC Vigilant in basement. Setting it up, cleaning etc. and need to know whether or not to put a damper in the stove pipe. Manual on VC website says no, but this manual is for newer stoves... 8" pipe to 8" thimble, short run from stove to thimble is approimately 27".

    Also where can I find a manual for this stove. Read the manual on VC website, seems appropriate for my stove, but designd for coal.

    Lastly... I purchased a new oval to round adapter from Heat-Fab, but there is a 3/8ths gap on each end. I assume I just fill this with stove cement?

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  2. Woodsrover

    Woodsrover Member

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    I have an original manual. If you can't find one I can take digital photos of it for you and send them along.

    I ran mine for years without a damper but it wouldn't be a bad idea. There were a couple times when the stove started to get away from me and anything you have to help slow it down helps.

    3/8" gap? Where? You'll want that stove pipe as air-tight as you can get it. Maybe you got a bad piece of pipe?
  3. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    Thanks for the offer on the manual. If it is easier and you can photocopy it, I will send you the cost of postage. I will then scan it and post to this forum for others reference. I have seen the request before.

    The gap is at each end of the oval opening where the stove pipe goes into the stove. The actual opening measures 9" x5" but the pipe measured 8.5x5. I could not find one that measured 9" online. It fits snuggly throughout but has the gap on each end. Can I fill this with stove cement to seal it up? I'll post a photo tonight.
  4. Woodsrover

    Woodsrover Member

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    Sure, I can copy and send it to you. I'd be slow to post it on-line for copyright reasons. I'm probably not supposed to copy it either but I'm an outlaw.
    Don't have it with me today but I'll bring it to work Monday and do it.
  5. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    Understood, thanks. I would assume manuals don't fall under strict copyright laws, especially since the company that produced the manual is no longer in buisness and the current Vermont Castings offers no support for products sold before they bought the company. I couldn't believe it when I read this on their website.
  6. Woodsrover

    Woodsrover Member

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    That's nice. I was impressed with my old VC stove but not so with the company. I needed a couple parts when I first installed it and neither the company nor the local dealers were any help at all. I don't think I'd buy a new stove from them the way they treat their old stove customers.
  7. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I have a PDF version of the manual. Not sure how to get it to you, though.

    I used a damper when I ran a Vigilant for the previous four years. It worked well when I needed it.
  8. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    Is there any reason I shouldn't fill the small gap with firerope and stove cement between the stove pipe oval and the stove collar?
  9. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    There really shouldn't be that much of a gap. Not enough for a gasket to fit in, at least.

    Post a pic.
  10. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    Here is a picture... P1100720.JPG
  11. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Pipe doesn't seem to be in all the way.
  12. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    Look at the front. The rolled edge is tight to the stove. Will not go down further.
    P1100721.JPG
  13. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    The back should be further down.
  14. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    I guess I don't understand how. That rib in the the pipe goes all the way around and is right up against the stove collar front and back. The pipe is level, although the first pic looks to be tiped forward. Trust me the pipe oval is about 3/4" smaller than the stove collar.
  15. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Okay. It looked uneven in the pic.
  16. spolleypt

    spolleypt New Member

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    So do I full with stove cement, stove cement and rope, or go back to drawing board and find larger oval and new pipe. (I already spent 70$ on this pipe and oval adapter). The different adapters are shorter and would need longer pipe to fit correctly.
    This pic might be better P1100722.JPG
  17. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I didn't worry about any gap that I had. I screwed the pipe in to make sure it was a tight fit and it worked fine. I have CO monitors next to all my stoves and it never made a peep when the Vigilant was running.

    No harm in filling it with furnace cement, which I have done when the Intrepid was connected. I wouldn't go as far as stuffing it with gaskets, though.
  18. defiant3

    defiant3 Feeling the Heat

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    +1. If you have an adaquate draft, a gap like that shouldn't matter. Gasketing or cement is fine to fill it if you need to, and I certainly would if you install the cast stovepipe damper. Maybe just run it as is and see how it goes. Remember that unlike gas and oil appliances, woodsmoke smells and long before CO becomes a problem, you'll smell the smoke in the house, be coughing, eyes watering etc.

    THere may be any number of other issues w/an old Vig. so run it, see how it goes, report back! Hope for a good season.
  19. Ducky

    Ducky Member

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    I don't mean to hijack the guys thread, but....

    Initially when I got my stove, it was given to me... I put in a damper in my pipe. My stove came witha reducer and 2 sections of black pipe, and 1 section of double wall... I wish, I would have skipped the reducer, but that's a different story (would have allowed me a better draft with a shorter pipe - for you lurkers)

    My damper.... Is for a gas furnace, it's a comercial damper.. Possibly even industrial, but how it's made. Its made to work with a thermostat... I have 8 more on the shelf.. It's pretty heavy duty, alot heavier than the stove pipe material... Moving on...( I want to clarify that, cause I know folks will give me a hard time.. 'you put a WHAT!? As a damper?!'. Hehe.. Ya, inexperience.. What can I say? I can say, NEVER use a piece of aluminum as a 'fill the gap' piece... Lol we won't go there....

    Ok so, I ran my vigilant for 4 years, using the damper in the pipe as my control. Man what a friggin pain in the tail! Getting it set right... Ugh!

    Then I did the hearth forum's screaming 'no no'

    I bought a magic heat box from northern tool....

    I'm a fan of that little box. Though, I'm heating 2k sq ft of open floor space.. It helps, and for a long time I was looking for a bigger stove... I came on here, and some guy, I don't even know who, kept telling me over and over, start the stove get it HOT. Then add big stuff, get that burning good, and close the stoves main damper.... Crack the door a lil if you have too... And viola! It worked.. Like holy crap! Not only did it work it works awesome! I consume 1/5 less wood, and I get amazing heat output...

    Moral of the story, get the flue damper, but don't use it. My damper is above my magic heat box.... Which everyone around here says is a waste of money... Maybe it is? But I have it, and my stove is set up and I'm not gonna mess with it to remove it, so I use it... The in the pipe aka flue damper, I never use, it's set to full open. But it's there, if I ever need to like totally kill the fire... Which means major smoke...


    For you lurkers, my flue damper, is NOT a typical residential damper you buy at home depot, this thing is built.... Get a wood stove damper! Don't cheap out when screwing around with fire!
  20. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I ran my Vigilant with a 6" pipe/liner in an 18 foot chimney. Ran like a champ and was relatively clean burning for a Non-EPA stove. I also had a pipe damper which I used occasionally when my draft was strong and the stove top temps were too high for my needs.

    In regards to the Magic Heat, I am surprised that is working for you since you also stated you had a weak draft. With a strong draft, and burning right, my surface pipe temps were in the low 200s, which is the equivalent to many modern EPA stoves.

    I would worry that with a weak drafts + a Magic Heat you are just begging for a lot of build-up in your chimney.
  21. Ducky

    Ducky Member

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    Ya I rectified that by adding 5 more feet to my stove pipe on the outside, increased draft considrably

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