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"Intrepid" marked on the side...Vermont Castings?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by 76ER, Nov 10, 2008.

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  1. 76ER

    76ER New Member

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    Loc:
    Southern Ontario
    Hello All!,
    I hope there is someone out there with some knowledge about "Intrepid" wood stoves. A fellow worker is getting rid of his 15+ yr old "Intrepid" because of some chimney issue. He is selling it, screen, tools, ash bucket etc, and 2 chords of 12 year old seasoned wood for $150.00 Canadian. I have seen pictures of the stove and it appears it is in great shape. My question is...when I go to visually inspect it...what should I be looking for besides the obvious crack or missing door. I've checked the net for stoves marked "Intrepid" and have come up with Vermont Castings. Any help would be appreciated.

    Ian

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  2. Valhalla

    Valhalla Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    Essex County, New York
    A nice small Vermont Castings stove. There are many owners here on Hearth.com, so search for a lot of info on it.

    Look for cracked, broken and missing parts. The usual on gaskets.

    Oh yes, buy it. But, look before you leap, so you don't buy a pile of scrap.

    The wood is how old?
  3. 76ER

    76ER New Member

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    ...thanks for the reply..the wood was purchased 12 yrs ago...apparently not much was used in twelve yrs.
  4. kwburn

    kwburn New Member

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    Nov 19, 2005
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    Loc:
    Connecticut
    Intrepid is a great little heater for a small area (1 large room or a couple of smaller rooms). So long as you have the proper expectations of it then its a great stove.

    If it only says 'Intrepid' on the side then it is non-catalytic and if it says 'Intrepid II' then it is the catalytic version. The catalytic version is much more efficient but you would want to consider that combuster may or may not be bad (approx $150) and also look closely at the internals for any warping,etc.
  5. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    Look for any warped metal. That will tell you it's been overfired. You can check gaskets/seals- but they can be replaced.

    That wood- if not stored properly- will be rotten and more trouble than it's worth.
  6. MikoDel

    MikoDel Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2008
    Messages:
    46
    Loc:
    Fort Washington, Pennsylvania
    Intrepid is a great heater. I love it so much we took it with us from our first house. (It was there when we moved in.) If it is a pre-1980 model like mine, it won't even have a model number on it. Mine is a 1302 but I only know that from speaking to Vermont Castings tech support. There is a plate on the rear with the info.

    But a word of warning - while I would definitely classify the Intrepid as an efficient and very clean-burning stove, it does create a fair amount of dust in the room when it is in operation, and you can count on dusting off a fine layer of white "soot" about every month or so from surfaces in the room. Hopefully the door glass and gasket I just replaced will remedy this to some extent. It was the last original gasket on the stove and in really bad shape. (Bolt was frozen on the top stay and I finally got around to extracting it - major pain.) Actually, I could have gotten away with just slipping the glass out and the new glass in, and not loosening that one stay at all. But that's me - I always fix it.

    The good new is, as of right now, parts are still available for this stove.

    You will definitely want to do the following -
    *Replace the door gaskets and the griddle gasket, or have it done.
    *Make sure both doors meet and close evenly. Clean the glass and check that the glass and glass gaskets are intact and in proper position.
    *Check for both hinge pins in each door.
    *Make sure the griddle and griddle gasket make a good seal (no warped metal, etc). You have to have a good seal at the griddle. Make sure you have a "hook" tool that fits the griddle.
    *Purchase a griddle handle for this stove - they don't make one specifically for the older Intrepid, but I got one at a wood stove store, off a general parts rack, that fits similar Intrepid models. I used the "hook" for years and I'm done with it.
    *Look at the firebricks and see if they are intact. Eventually you are going to need to learn to remove and replace the upper fireback to clean out the secondary combustion chamber, and replace cracked firebricks. It is kind of tricky to replace, and as many times as I have done it, I still swear once in awhile!
    *Operate the damper with the lever on the left. It should open and close easily, and stay in either position.
    *Check the air inlet shutter on the rear, right side. It should be connect to the control lever by a metal fan chain and you should be able to fully open and close it with the control lever.

    You may want to stick with the orientation that the flue collar is currently in now. Because changing from top to rear vent, or vice versa means having to loosen the stove bolts on the flue collar. This is not something you want to try yourself unless you have adequate tools and are prepared to drill out old fasteners and tap a new thread. I have re-tapped more than one fastener on my stove. NO FUN. But nice to be able to change the flue collar gasket, though.

    I also completely disassembled my Intrepid and re-cemented the whole shebang. Now it's as tight as it can possibly be. This was a BIG job, but using a wire wheel on the iron was so worth it. The Intrepid has gorgeous castings, one of it's best features, and restoring the old iron to a new lustre was very satisfying. Then of course you want to apply stove black.

    Attached Files:

  7. Joyca

    Joyca New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
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    15
    Loc:
    Pepperell
    I just installed a brand new ~1983 Intrepid in my basement to go along with a 1979 Resolute upstairs. My wife and I purchased a home in June '07 and I found the Intrepid still on a pallet, wrapped in plastic, with spark screen, ash puller, manuals, etc. What a find! Whomever bought the stove even installed the metal asbestos pipe from the basement to the roof. All I had to do was install ~5' of stove pipe and it was complete. Nice little stove. It needs to be filled much more often than the Resolute but it keeps the basement nice and toasty. It will take some time and patience to find the optimal burning operation. The secondary combustion works well and you shouldn't see any smoke coming out the chimney pipe when running well. Just a nice shimmer of heat. Good Luck.
  8. jetmech

    jetmech Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2007
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Dillsburg PA
    The Intrepid is a great little stove, It heats a ton for its size... Im going to try and post a pic of mine with my Better Halfs help because while i might be just a little stove savvy I am not Techno dude. Here goes

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  9. jetmech

    jetmech Member

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    Dec 8, 2007
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    Loc:
    Dillsburg PA
    And before anybody wigs out all clearances are met and heat shields installed........ at picture time stove was at 500 deg griddle top about 260 stove pipe and house was at 74 deg. OAT was 24.5.
  10. bmwbj

    bmwbj Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    165
    Loc:
    Ringoes NJ
    Great little stove, it took me quite a while to finale figure it out, but
    now with the operating time under my belt, and the help of all the people
    on this forum I now have no problems with it's operations.

    I'm not sure about the "non cat" version, but it should be alittle easier
    to use, not having to deal with "cat light off" and all that stuff.

    I use mine to heat my 1200 sq. ft. ranch, and it works great.
  11. MikoDel

    MikoDel Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2008
    Messages:
    46
    Loc:
    Fort Washington, Pennsylvania
    Nice in white enamel, I like it. I think when I posted my pic, I was still burning candles in it during the warm months. I read the line about "Before anybody wigs out" then saw the proximity of the wooden barrel in my pic. I move that a little farther away when the thing is really firing. Here's a few hints that you can take or leave, after 10 years of Intrepid heating experience.

    1) Burn candles inside, once or twice a month (in candle holders) during the summer and especially during rainstorms. It will dry up the humidity and moisture inside and keep rust from taking a stronghold. One summer it got so humid that the damper lever was actually frozen come winter. It freed up with a little effort, but burning candles stops stuff like that from happening.

    2) Keep the ash fettles clear! This is probably tip numero uno. Intrepid comes with that slicer tool, which fits in beween the ash fettles in front. Once every 3 loads of wood or so, or whenever you see the ash rising, put on leather gloves, slowly open the front doors, and poke the ashes that accumulate in those "louvers" back into the stove. This is absolutely necessary for proper air into the fire, no matter what setting you are using. (Except open door burning) It also guarantees that you are helping to force the ash on the bottom grate down into the ash pan.

    3) Buy good fireproof gloves and empty the ash pan when necessary. I heat-fractured the glass on my Intrepid a long time ago during a long, cold weekend when the coals built up past the fettles and against the glass. Stupid, but I was a novice, and I didn't even realize I could buy gloves protective enough to be able to handle the ash pan on a working stove. Even so, try to wait until the coals have mellowed a little, and even then you have to avoid flat surface contact like palm and fingers against the bottom of the pan - no good!

    4) Lift off the griddle and get it out of your way when you are messing with the upper fireback during secondary combustion chamber cleanings. Work inside the stove. Move the tabs that hold the fireback from the inside of the stove with pliers, once you have slightly loosened the nuts on the outside. Have a flashlight handy. Get the manual. If they don't offer it anymore, I have one I can email to you. The hard part is getting everything in proper position and alignment, and then holding it there while you turn those tabs back into position to hold it. You have to a)make sure the damper and control rod are correctly positioned and the rod is sitting in that little groove, and then b) that all has to stay that way while you slip the fireback in, keeping the little protrusion on the bottom in back of the front firebrick.

    5) The bottom grate just lifts right out. I owned the thing for years and never knew that. Pull out all the ash fettles one at a time, on an angle, and then lift the grate out. Get a good grip, it's heavy. Makes it really easy to clean out the ash that falls under the ash pan.

    6) DON'T GET LAZY AND RE-LOAD THE STOVE WITH THE DAMPER IN THE SEC COMBUSTION POSITION. Yes it works fine if it's hot enough, but when you load the wood you run the risk of knocking against the damper and sending it slamming open. That's not good for the casting. It's like "slamming the slide" on a gun and it can possibly produce stress cracks.

    7) CHANGE THE HANDLES. Sorry I waited for #7 for this, because I'm sure I lost a lot of readers to boredom by now. The ceramic handles on early (pre-1980) Intrepids are a liability and a burn hazard. Get the real deal, SS coil "springs". They are the only thing that really work, especially on that side damper control which gets very hot when you are using the "re-burn". And don't touch anything except the spring coils. Don't make the mistake of touching the bolt in the center. But if you're smart you won't even approach a working stove without work gloves.

    8) Don't close the air inlet shutter all the way unless your stack is cherry. Once in awhile, when you start a fire with a lot of kindling, and then you get sidetracked, the draft makes a too-hot fire. Then, you throw the damper into "re-burn", close the air inlet, and in a minute or so you're right as rain. Other than that, you can damp it down to near closed when the fire is very hot, but don't close it all the way. Burn a little hotter, load a little more often, and keep the creosote down.

    9) If you can still get the rear heat shield, go for it. It works amazingly well at increasing forward heat production. As you can see from my pic, I don't need it - I have mine stuck in front of a fireplace. But it does more than keep things in back from burning - it redirects a lot of heat to the front and to your room!

    10) Work the fasteners once a year. One of the people in this thread found a new stove in shrink wrap. Crack and re-tighten the stove bolts that hold the a) reversible flue collar, and b) door glass and door heat shield. Clean off the rust and spray with WD-40 before replacing. Replace the stovebolts that hold the glass and door heatshield every few years. TAKE THE DOORS OFF and do it flat. Otherwise you risk dropping the glass. Get the PERFECT size phillips screwdriver, you don't want it slipping out and cracking the glass. The doors have 2 gaskets each and they will eventually need to be replaced.
    If you are smart, you will buy some grade '8' hex bolts the same size as the stove bolts that are in the flue collar, and replace with them. GO EASY on the tightening! If you use a ratchet, just use three fingers. Snug ONLY. But this will save you so much nightmarish work, because the flue collar has a very important gasket that will eventually need replacing.

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  12. splitwood

    splitwood New Member

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    Nov 16, 2008
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    Loc:
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    Where did you get the coil handles. I need to replace my handles they get too hot.
  13. sandie

    sandie Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
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    269
    Loc:
    West of Boston, MA
    I want a new "Spring" handle for the damper also but I have the Resolute 0042 1985 vintage with the two doors if that matters. How hard is it to replace that handle??? Mine flips up sometimes when I have closed it so may need some adjustment also?
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