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Hearthstone Heritage - Top Damage

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by gt4play, Nov 2, 2012.

  1. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    Hi all, this is my first post to the forums. After some digging, it seems this site is filled with knowledgeable folks and information.

    First off, I'm not new to wood stoves. It's all we had when I grew up. But it has been a few years and now that I have a single family home and a family of my own, it's time to get back to my roots (propane is just so ridiculous around here - which is my current primary source of heating).

    At any rate, I am picking up a Hearthstone Heritage, new (as in never used), for a song; <$800. The catch. Something heavy came down on the top-center, right where the top flu and center stone meet, cracking the stone and cracking one of the cast iron supports below that stone. It's bent down about .5".

    The owner does not know the history of the stove enough to know what caused the damage - it was given to him by a family member (or perhaps a level of embarrassment prevents him from coming out with it). At any rate, the stove is a good drive away. I have gotten tons of pictures and the owner has (at my request) gone over this meticulously while on the phone with me. Aside from the flawed top, the stove looks beautiful and mint.

    All in all, a new cast iron top (with brown enamel) is $450. New center stone is $60. I feel perfectly comfortable with disassembling this for the purposes of replacing the top. But do any of you feel there should be any sounding alarms going off about this? Or is this really a deal to be had?

    Thanks!

    -Chris

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  2. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Have you seen what the firebox looks like? I would be concerned with, due to the amount of force needed to cause the damage you described, that it may have weakened other parts of the stove. I am not saying that this is the case, but I would do my best to check and see if anything inside the firebox or on the sides of the stove have shifted, bent, loosened or are showing signs of small cracks in the stone.

    Just make sure everything is in it's place.

    But, that being said, I think you will have a fine looking stove for a good price when you are done.
  3. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I had a tech come out and do some easy work on my heritage when I fist got it. I asked about taking them apart and he had experience with replacing a top casting. Turns out if you get it hot enough that the top will collapse as the iron structure melts! Anyway, he said it was easy. The first step to stove disassembly is to pop the top off and since that is as fas as you'll be going, it's the easiest major repair possible. The top stones are just cemented in, the top is held down on each side with the bolts.

    FIgure, that stove is 3500$ new.

    You need to look for other damage. If the top was smashed in then a significant thing happened. Look at the legs for cracks, look at the corner castings for deflection or cracks, look at the side stones too. This was way more than a fat chick sitting on it.
    corey21 and raybonz like this.
  4. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    Buahaha.. yeah more than that.

    I would be worried a bit about the other castings/stones for sure, all that energy may.. or may not, have been absorbed by the top casting and stone.
  5. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    Is there a virtual whiteboard of quotes anywhere here? If so, this just earned a spot. :)

    Thanks all for your input. Your feelings are and suggestions are all things I think and worry about. The guy was pretty thorough in his description of the components as he went over them one-by-one as I requested (legs, corner castings, other stones, etc). But, we shall see when I get a chance to really look this over in person. It'd be a shame to see other stones stress fractured or other internal damage that wasn't evident up front.

    Glad to hear removal of the top isn't so bad. I was fully prepared to disassemble this whole unit (if only so I can have piece of mind by inspecting everything that isn't so obvious in its current state).

    I'm going to get this tomorrow. I'll provide a progress report when I return.

    Thanks again.
  6. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    Pictures.. we like pictures.
    PapaDave and BrowningBAR like this.
  7. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    The brown enamel looks really cool with the highlights and lowlights. The stone blocks that make up the stove are 1.25" thick and one wall thick. It's pretty stout. Between each stone is a gasketed "spline" of flatbar steel plus cement oozing out everywhere. The flat roof is relatively weak and unless the sides were pulled in or pushed out as the roof caved in, I would doubt that the sides were crushed vertically. The legs seem weaker than the sides. Bring a level to try and determine that the sides are plumb and square to each other and the base.
    BrowningBAR likes this.
  8. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    Hi all,

    Well, I got it! I live in MD and drove to southern NY (about 5 hrs each way) to get this. Fortunately the weather was perfect for driving!

    Overall, the stove is in fine shape. It really has never been used. The top did take a serious hit - there's no salvaging the cast structure. Fortunately the two side stones on the top are fine - only the center is split in two. The rest of the framework is fine. No additional cracked stones - the legs are good and solid, all components seem to be intact. The side door handle is bent some (something the owner didn't catch in his description) so I managed to get him to knock off another $50 at a final price of $700.

    It is evident, however, somebody made an attempt to take this apart (and likely just gave up). From my readings, it looks like there's only a single rod and a bolt that pull the top down against a gasket of some kind. the one long rod that spans the height of the stove should have two nuts on the bottom. There's only one there now, and appears the rod isn't positioned as well as it should be. I'll see about getting that top off this evening and get pictures.

    BTW, the ceramic baffle (that's apparently quite fragile) that sits just below the top is in fine shape. I figure if there's no cracked stones and that baffle is in good shape, then this thing is probably good and solid. I'll continue to give it a thorough inspection once I get that top off.
  9. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    I see what you mean about the flatbar steel - it's analogous to a 'slip tongue' for joining two grooved sides of hardwood flooring. One thing that has me confused is the right and left sides of the stove. Take the right side for instance - the threaded rod that pulls the top and bottom castings together (sandwiching the stones in between) runs straight through those stones where they join together. Do you know how these are joined? I don't see how the flatbar can be used here...

    Thanks!
  10. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    Perhaps two splines with a gap for the rod.

    There are two of these rods, one on each side but since the side loading door is in the way, that side's rod only runs into the door where you can see it. I would be sure to run some sort of a strap around the stove as a belt near the top so that when you take the top off the stove walls and castings won't fall away. I don't recall my rods being double nutted.

    Did you get the instructions from Hearthstone for top replacement when you ordered the casting? Their instructions and tech guys are actually pretty good. They have to be good since taking one of these apart is a rare thing for a the typical stove tech.
  11. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    Sounds pretty good but pictures will be a big plus ;)

    Ray
  12. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    Here are some overall pictures of the stove and door:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The top came off without too much muscling. Despite the impact, the cement still had a good hold on the edges. Here's pics of the obvious damage:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The guy decided to use the top as his own personal coffee cup holder - and apparently spilled often. I don't know how to get those damn stains out... :-/

    Here's a question. According to the Hearthstone's Technical Data Sheet for baffle removal, there's no indication of cement being around the perimeter like it is here. This doc gives every indication that the only thing holding that baffle down are those wires. So is this cement from factory?

    There's also a bit of damage here - not significant. Do you think it needs replacement?

    [​IMG]

    The cement joining the two stones on this side is also cracked along the seam. I'll probably have to scrape that off and re-seal:

    [​IMG]

    My next steps are to order parts:

    2020-290; Top Casting
    1141-261; Top Center Stone
    ???; Top Perimeter Gasket (can't find a P/N - maybe it comes with the top??)

    I'll remove some of the internals so I can gain better access to the side with the cracked cement. Other than that, all stones feel solid - even with some light tapping using a rubber mallet.

    Suggestions as to what I should also be looking for now that I have this apart?

    Thanks!
    raybonz likes this.
  13. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    Don't worry about the stains in the stones at this point. Once it gets broken in, the stones will change color, and those stains will *probably* go away on their own.
  14. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    Their online Technical Data Sheet for Side Door & Frame Replacement covers the details for top removal. This is how I found out about the double nut. Haven't ordered the casting just yet - just want to inspect more thoroughly to see if there's anything I need to be included in that order. So far, so good. :)
  15. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Great pics. I've never seen one with its top off.
  16. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    Looks like you did great on that stove!

    Ray
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  17. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    Wow, impressive. So nice to see it new. I remember the smell of their stone cement.

    I have never heard of cement on that baffle. Mine sure didn't have it. It just sat up there which is important since every year I swept the chimney into the stove so I had to remove the baffle to prevent smashing it and also to clean the scrubbings. I just bought a new baffle and it was a good 100$ delivered with a healthy part of that being shipping. If you're making an order anyways, I would replace it. The cement sure looks to be hiding a previously banged up baffle. The new one is nice and square. You have the old style cotter pin baffle, the new one uses SS wire which is way better.

    Unless you plan to remove that side stone, I wouldn't worry about tearing the stove down any farther to try and sack that crack. You aren't actually sealing anything, what you see is the extra cement that spooged out during assmebly and was scraped off. Crack is fine but no harm in slapping on another coat. That area is above the secondary air inlets anyway so a leak up there will not be a problem, secondary air is always at full throttle on this epa stove.

    Looks like they changed the ash grate design to something that you can operate from the firebox side. That's better than the silly deal that I had inside the ash pan to open the grate.

    Oh and do you have the stove for the firebox floor?
  18. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    I have emailed their tech support again about this. It's the same color as everything else, so I don't know. It should be interesting to hear what they have to say.

    Good to know. Thanks!

    Yep! It was jogged loose, so I just took it out temporarily. There were also firebricks lined up against the back, but I think the prev owner put them there...

    Thanks for the feedback!
  19. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    The heritage was never produced with firebrick. I saw those bricks laying on the floor in one of the pictures but assumed that they were from another project.
  20. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    I might be confused then. In your second to last post you were asking about a stone for the firebox floor (assuming 'stove' was a typo). Inside the firebox, on the right side is a firebrick that appears to be cemented in. There was another for the left side (removed). Is that what you were referring to? Or are you saying these bricks shouldn't even be there? And if they're not supposed to be there, I guess I didn't catch what you were asking.

    Thanks!
  21. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    The one in my dealers shop has them on the bottom, just like that one. And I note that the manual shows a replacement part # for "000-101
    STONE: SOAPSTONE,REFRACTORY".. looks just like the ones in the bottom of my Mansfield.
  22. gt4play

    gt4play New Member

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    Many kudos to the tech support guys at Hearthstone (Ray Mayer in particular) - they've been very responsive and helpful. Here are some answered questions that might prove useful for others down the road (and answers my question about that baffle):

    (1) These instructions state that the long threaded rod that goes through the entire structure on the right side has two nuts on the bottom. This rod I removed had barely enough threading to get one nut on (I think the previous owner snapped off a section). So, should there be 2 nuts? Is one welded to the rod? Otherwise, aside from tightening them against each other, I don't see the purpose.

    The (2) nuts are to insure that the tie rod is locked in place by tightening them against each other.


    (2) I also came across instructions for baffle removal. It appears the baffle just lays flat on top of the secondary burn apparatus (according to the instructions). Mine has a full solid bead of cement around the edge holding it down. Is that factory installation procedure? Without taking off the top, I see no way how that baffle could be gracefully removed.

    We put cement around the baffle to hold it in place during shipment. Once the stove has been used for a while, the cement will start to break away since the secondary manifold will expand/contract a lot more than the baffle. It’s not possible to cement a replacement baffle in place.

    (3) Do you have a particular stove cement you recommend?

    Rutland Products makes a stove cement as do we. Most dealers have the Rutland product. Your dealer would probably have to order our cement if you want it.


    (4) Do you have a rope gasket you'd recommend for top replacement (assuming the new cast replacement doesn't come with it)?

    We use 3/8” non-core gasket where the top meets the stones. It’s our part 3110-057 and it’s sold by the foot.
    raybonz likes this.
  23. firecracker_77

    firecracker_77 Minister of Fire

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    nice pics
  24. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    In the base of the stove are two stone slabs about the same dimensions as a firebrick but they are not firebricks. Firebricks are those pumice clay looking things and are common in stoves, but not in a heritage. You have both stone slabs for the base right?

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