Question: Through a friend I received a Franco Belge coal stove from the mid to late 70's. The stove is in perfect condition, but I'm not sure where to begin. I've been getting mixed answers from everyone. Some say it's not compatible with my fireplace others say no problem. My fireplace is a zero clearance with brick lining on the back of it, the flue is aprox 9" in diameter(the flue is metal). The flue extends through aprox. 3' of attic space then exits through a metal chimney. I've tried to get a professional installer since late spring, but at this point I'm ready to get started myself....I've done all the major renovations to my 1965 ranch. Answer: Installing a coal or wood stove, using an existing fireplace as a flue can cause several problems. First, is the fact that your zero clearance fireplace flue is probably much larger than the flue on the coal/wood stove. this can in itself cause draft problems. Then you get into the issue of sealing the coal/woodstove flue where it enters the zero clearance fireplace flue. This is all assuming that the flue on your 1965 zero clearance fireplace is still in serviceable condition. We had this same problem at our home. We chose to completely remove the zero clearance, and install a new metalbestos chimney. Like you, we had about 3' of attic space. The chimney parts only cost us about $500 and I installed it in only a day. When I was done, I called a chimney cleaning outfit and paid them for a inspection. They charged me the standard chimney cleaning fee. 11/2007 It is absolutely imperitive to make sure that an insert/hearthstove is approved for zero clearance fireplace approval. Beyond that you must ensure that it is properly lined with a liner system listed for use in zero clerance fireplaces. Zero clearance fireplace chimney does not meet the UL103 type HT standard required for inserts/hearthstoves.