It gets confusing trying to respond to everyone. I truly appreciate all the advice. Right now I have a call into the mason who built the chimney and calls to two local Chimney companies who sweep/do mason work/install liners. As for the 12" vs 6" clearance to combustibles. I looked in my manual and completely agree. But according to the company who's been in the business of installing stoves for 35 years told me they need 6" to combustibles with the double walled pipe. I removed the 6"s ad advised which worked out to a little over 20" wide circle. That is why you see the huge black trim ring we had to get. Behind the wall you can see what the mason had done before the walls were sheetrocked. Begreen, my wife and I chose to put a masonary chimney on the outside. The builder was willing to do an indoor chimney up through the ceiling but my wife and I did not like that look. We liked the visual appeal of an outdoor chimey. At the time I had no knowledge of burning and assumed with the 1000's of homes I see burning wood with outdoor chimney that this would not be a problem. I would like to get a true height measurement on the chimney, because if it is not within building code, then someone mason/builder/building inspector will have some problems to answer. The stove is on the first floor. Here's the front of the house during construction (it's all I have here at work). The backyard is walkout since the home was built into a hill. Shot again from the back of house, seeing the basement part that is below grade. Inside the house this is directly below the chimney. Unfinished basement, that is being used for storage. Now back to burning. Last night I had the stove hit 600 degrees with the door cracked. We were sweating in our house. Once I locked down the door the temps dropped Sat at 500 and leveled out at 400. When I tried closing the vent down the fire was not happy. I can confirm, that a cracked window does in fact make a difference to aid in the draft. I say that because my house was 75 degrees and we had to open a window to cool it down some.