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Resolute Acclaim Refractory Material

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by LogCabinMom, Dec 28, 2006.

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  1. LogCabinMom

    LogCabinMom New Member

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    Hello everyone -
    just found this forum, and hoping you can help us out. We have a 7 year old VC Resolute Acclaim, and in cleaning it out today I noticed the 'refractory material' was disintegrating. It looks like it has disintegrated up to the screws - and one of the screws is gone (I wondered where that came from in the ash pan...)
    Anyway, I've seen that a new Combustion package is $150; at what point do I have to replace it? What exactly does it do? Is it very dangerous to run the stove now?

    here's hoping I get some responses, it's gettin' cold!

    THanks -

    Karen

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  2. seaken

    seaken Minister of Fire

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    Shokan, NY
    Hi Karen, welcome.

    I know that stove very well but I can't tell exactly what you are trying to describe. Where these screws located? Lets work from the bottom up.

    The bottom of the firebox is a slotted grate. It is in two peices, front and back. On the left and right sides just above the grate you should see some refractory firebricks. At the back of the firebox, at a 90 degree angle to the left and right firebricks, is another set of refractory firebricks. These two back firebricks will have a steel retainer at their top edge. At the lower section of these two bricks is an arched opening into the soft refractory burn chamber which is behind these hard firebricks. At the top of these bricks there is a cast iron fireback and a cast iron damper assembly. This cast iron fireback and damper assembly is bolted to the back of the stove.

    In order to access the soft refractory chamber (the "combustion package") you need to remove the firebricks and then the cast iron fireback and damper. This will expose the soft refractory combustion package. If this soft refractory is damaged it should be replaced. If it is still intact it may be fine, even if the bottom is chewed up a little from the poker. The combustion package is where the secondary burn happens. It allows the hot gasses to mix with oxygen and creates the environment for a hot fire. It is essential to an efficient and clean burn and the Acclaim will require it to operate as designed in a safe manner. Do not burn the Acclaim without it.

    Hope this helps,
    Sean
  3. LogCabinMom

    LogCabinMom New Member

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    Hi Sean,
    Thanks for writing - yes, I'm talking about the soft refractory material behind the back firebricks - apparently it has 2 screws right above its arched opening. If I put my hand in back above the opening, I can actually brush off more of the combustion package. Should this be happening in a stove that is only 7 years old and really has only been used for 1 1/2 seasons? I can't believe I'm looking at a $150 replacement part for a stove that's been used so little.
    thanks again -

    Karen
  4. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    This refactory package is soft I don't understand why it would have to be brushed off under the flue collar If it did then very gently wit a shop vack or soft paint brush. I have a refactory package in my 1988 Intrepid and its intact. As long as it is whole and has not been damaged by a shop vac or heavy handed brushing then it should work fine if the bottom got poked up a bit no problem there either. I think you are doing a lot of worring for nothing unless it has seen abuse prior. I can't imagine why it should have unless your vent pipe drips moisture or water on it?
    Can you explain why you are pushing it around with your hand? have you ever sen any rust at the joints or seams or inside your connector pipe?
  5. seaken

    seaken Minister of Fire

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    Okay, I get it now. The screws are in the soft refractory itself. I didn't get that the first time. These screws were probably used as a temporary device to hold the outside panel in place while the cement set. I've used that technique a few times.

    I can't tell for sure from here but that refractory may still be okay. As long as the interior has not caved in, or any part of it has ben crushed, it should still be able to work okay. Yes, it is normal for it to flake off. It gets extremely hot and it will get more brittle as it ages. $150 every 5 to 8 years is normal for these types of stoves. That's about $25-$30 per year. Actually, these stoves typically approach the $100 per year mark for maintenance/repair (depending on who does the work). It is a trade off for the high efficiency and the full feature set available with these types of stoves. For some folks it is not preferred and they will buy a more simple box stove instead, like a LOPI or Avalon or Pacific Energy. Those stoves usually have less replacement parts costs. But they also make it a little more difficult for the operator to get the highest burn to heating efficiency ratio and lack some of the nicer styling features. The Acclaim is a beautiful stove and once you get to know it you will likely fall in love with it. But it does take more care and effort from a maintenance perspective.

    Sean
  6. LogCabinMom

    LogCabinMom New Member

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    Well, this is good to know, I guess - that it does take a little more care/cost than other stoves. We didn't realize it when we had bought it. We bought it new 7 years ago, used it one season, moved, then stored it (in a garage and then our basement) until this year. From all I've read/seen, I don't think the refractory package is in bad shape, we're still going to use it for now and probably get a new combustion pkge next season.

    Thanks for all the help -
    Karen
  7. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Karen it occures to me that maybe the cellar and garage areas were not kind for your's stove storage. A lot of summer moisture can be found in those locations and probably found it into that soft refractory package thew the flue collar.
  8. Brian VT

    Brian VT Minister of Fire

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    I just got a used Resolute and was cleaning it out with a Shop Vac and managed to suck an 1 1/2" hole out of the top of the "refractory package".
    Can this be patched or do I need to buy the whole $200+ unit ?
  9. Brian VT

    Brian VT Minister of Fire

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    I've got the refractory box out and I think I can screw a piece of ceramic blanket (Kaowool?) inside to cover the hole.
    Sound logical ?

    I have the stove down to almost just the shell and now have a new question.
    I was wondering what the lever under the stove does. I assume it's to adjust the air intake but I don't see anything happening when I move it.
    There are 2 phillips-head screws holding the floor plate down. I removed those and lightly started to pry the floor up
    to see if I needed to clean/service anything under there. The steps on the sides want to come up with it, so I stopped.
    Should I ignore whatever's under there ?
  10. Brian VT

    Brian VT Minister of Fire

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    Sorry, one more question. One of the side firebricks is cracked in half (very neat seam).
    Can I glue this back together with chimney cement or something like that ?
    Thanks again.
  11. elmoleaf

    elmoleaf Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
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    Find your vermont castings stove part's diagram here: http://www.stovepartsplus.com/Merch...&Store_Code=SPP&Category_Code=VERMONTCASTINGS
    Look and see how it goes together/apart before doing anything else.

    The hole in the refractory can be fixed. The kaowool might work, but may get sucked in while the stove is running. You might screw in a piece of hardware cloth to hold it....or try a mixture of furnace cement and perlite. I used that on my chamber to repair it. You will need some reinforcing or wire though to hold the patch.

    Furnace cement may work on the brick. Or you can make a refractory block out of perlite and furnace cement mixed together.

    PS. you'll probably get more replies if you start a new thread with your questions, rather than reviving an old one.
  12. Brian VT

    Brian VT Minister of Fire

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    Thanks. I got a piece of blanket from my buddy's syrup arch. I was just gonna run a few screws through.
    I like the hardware cloth idea better. Do you think the wire will survive a season ?



    LOL. On most forums people will flame you if you didn't search first for a related topic. I thought I was doing the right thing
    by bringing this one back.
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