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1981 Squire fireplace insert (#50500) missing flue collar... any ideas? ... duct tape (just kidding)

Post in 'Classic Wood Stove Forums (prior to approx. 1993)' started by jrh2264, Jun 25, 2008.

  1. jrh2264

    jrh2264 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Loc:
    Central NC
    I have a Squire wood-burning fireplace insert that I recently purchased (1981 model # 50500). My chimney is masonry and the flue is lined with the standard red clay flue material that is square in shape when looking down the chimney from the roof. It was swept this past season by a professional and is in a one-story home built in 1940 with a flue also for the basement fireplace (unused presently) and old oil heater flue (covered and no longer used at all).

    Not being very knowledgeable on wood stoves when I bought the lug and hauled it home, I didn't realize it is apparently missing the flue collar, which looks like it is supposed to be rectangular in shape. There are two rectangular-shaped flat metal parts with holes in them (6" x 5") that I do not know what they are or to what they should be attached (see pic #1... next to the mechanical pencil). They were either used with some other scrap pieces of metal that came with the insert to level it in its previous fireplace or they are a functional part of the stove or flue. I have searched around on the internet and called some places to see about replacement parts for the flue collar. Since Squire is no longer in business, I cannot find a replacement flue collar anywhere. Does anybody have any ideas?

    Could I perhaps have something welded onto the stove's 14" x 3.5" firebox opening that would work as a collar to which to attach the stove pipe? Or could I have a welder adapt a flue collar from another wood stove model that uses a similar sized 14" x 3.5" firebox opening. Another idea I had is that there is a sheet metal/machinery shop near my house here in Durham, NC. Would I be able to have them engineer me something out of heavy gauge steel sheet metal (say 10 gauge, .1345" thick) to use as an 8" collar hookup? Any thoughts or concerns I should be aware of (seal with chimney cement, etc)? I know the collar needs to open to 8 inches round to equal the surface area of the 14" x 3.4" firebox opening and will obviously need to withstand extreme heat also (800 degrees???). Will thick steel sheet metal do the trick since it attached to the main body of the insert at the firebox opening (which, I imagine, is one of the hottest parts of the stove!)? I know some collars are made of steel and some of cast iron, although they are presumably thicker than the sheet metal I am considering (.1345 of an inch).

    I am something of a poverty-stricken theology and ethics graduate student and a Methodist pastor, so I don't have huge sums of cash to throw around (and by the looks of my chosen profession, won't ever :eek:hh: ). If there isn't an affordable option for me, I will need to sell the stove and try again, I think.

    I will post some pictures of the stove and the firebox opening tonight when I can. The rectangular opening for the flue collar is 14" x 3.5". The two metal attachment bars within the rectangular firebox opening that have holes in them for attaching the collar (I assume) are 10" apart between the two holes in the bars.

    Thanks for your help!
    Josh

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  2. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Messages:
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    Western Mass.
    That is not missing anything. It came that way stock. The stove could also be set up on a stand and used as a freestanding unit, which then used a "boot" that bolted onto the top. That is the good news!

    The bad news is this - codes have changed today and you are not supposed to just slip an insert in. You can buy boots or adapters for this to convert it or adapt it so that, at minimum, a 5" section of ss flex pipe goes up through the damper area and toward the first flue tile.

    See, for instance:
    http://www.chimneylinerinc.com/specialty_parts.htm
    the rectangle to oval boot

    other examples:
    http://www.hartshearth.com/productcart/pc/viewCategories.asp?idCategory=222
  3. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    12,271
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    Those other parts are not part of the stove! (the rectangle things)

    It would be better to use very thin stainless steel than to use heavy ga mild in most cases. They could fab something out of 24 ga ss that would do fine - maybe even make the adapter as well as a tube which would extend up.....but the pre-made ones may end up being cheaper......
  4. jrh2264

    jrh2264 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
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    Loc:
    Central NC
    Wow, that's great news! I thought I was going to need to have something especially machined of thick iron or steel to get the stove operating safely. Glad to hear that is not the case. Thanks also for the links. I may check into having the boot constructed of 24 gauge stainless steel sheet metal which I can bolt onto the insert and then seal up tight with stove glue and some bubble gum. When I recently redid the ductwork in my house, the sheet metal company I mentioned above constructed a large (20" cube) return box with a small spring loaded door to change out the filter for a meager $80 (although it was galvanized and not stainless). I bet they will be able to do something for me pretty cheap considering that.

    Why thin sheet metal instead of something thicker, by the way? I would have thought fitting it with a thicker gauge would be more appropriate than 24 ga.

    Thanks!
    Josh
  5. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    When it comes to stainless steel, even thin metal - WAY thinner than even 24 ga, can take up to 2,000 degrees F.

    Thin is easier to work with and less expensive and there is no downside in this type of application. Even if you were to make it of mild steel, something of 20ga (regular) would last a long, long time. As an example, the best stove pipe you can buy is 22 ga, regular is 24 ga and they used to sell 26 ga!

    You can use stove cement or some flat gasketing - or both - plus bolt it down to those two welded-in brackets.
  6. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    BTW, if someday the congregation is feeling flush - that unit was one of the few that actually worked well with a catalytic internal retrofit. We had a discussion about these years ago, and I think someone (somewhere) was still selling them.....or maybe one will show up in someones junkyard. It was an internal retrofit made by Nu-tec and it bolted on the inside up against the damper opening.

    Nu-tec claims (at last glance) that these folks might sell them:
    http://servicesales.com/
  7. jrh2264

    jrh2264 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Loc:
    Central NC
    Thanks Webmaster for all your help on this. Upon talking with a local chimney sweep yesterday it turns out that it is unlikely that the stove will fit properly in the fireplace. Apparently, my fireplace and chimney were originally designed (1940) for use with coal and is not very deep in comparison to most fireplaces. Additionally, my wood mantle and surrounding frame-in would only be 12" away from the stove on all three sides, and the hearth flooring is built over the basement joists without any special insulation or engineering to accept a wood stove on top of it without digging up the present hearth down to the joists (including some of the hardwood flooring) and starting from scratch. Does this sound correct? Is there a more simple way of insulating the stove on the ground that would be less than an inch thick (like a stove mat)? The insert actually sits up a few inches from the floor.

    All in all, it sounds like too much work and money for me, considering that I will probably be moving within 15 months. Alas. I was very excited about using the stove this winter.

    By the way, any ideas on what would be a reasonable asking price for this stove? I got it for a meager price from a woman who just wanted it gone--and quick. I don't want to take anyone to the cleaners, but I do want to sell it for a fair price for me. Any thoughts?

    Thanks!

    Josh
  8. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    I'd say $250 or so and they move it - keep in mind that the customer can buy a boot and pedastal and turn it into a freestanding.....although it uses an 8" flue
  9. vlengyel

    vlengyel New Member

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    Oct 27, 2008
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    Hey you with the Squire 50-500 I too have one that I would like to install and there are no tags on it with registration numbers or UL info. To give to my insurance company, can you help us out? Or do you not have it anymore?? The 3 1/2" x 14" rectangle adapter is in stock and available through www.stovepartsunlimited.com
  10. marisajj

    marisajj New Member

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    Dec 9, 2010
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    Loc:
    west virginia
    hey i have the same fireplace. How do i operate this thing. 1981 squire wood burning fireplace. need help

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