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Vermont Casting Vigilant

Post in 'Vermont Castings & CDW Dutchwest older Models' started by wilburg, Oct 22, 2011.

  1. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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    my grandmother has a VC Vigilant wood stove. the chimney guy told her her stove wasnt safe because it was missing two screws, so now she is sitting in a cold house.. the two screws attaches a flange like thing that attaches to the liner for the chimney (top of stove)... actually the screws are still there but it appears that someone cut the heads of the crews leaving screw nubs.. see photos included..

    the stove is inside a large fireplace..

    my question 1) i tried to lift the flange and it was very difficult to move, so its not gonna just "fall off" is it safe to use with these two screw heads missing

    2) if i need to replace the screws ... is it going to be a major PIA? is it doable? does she need a new stove, this one seems pretty old

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  2. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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  3. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    It would seem that the flange does have to be mechanically fastened down in some way!

    Right now it may not come off easily - because creosote and rust are probably holding it!

    If it were mine, I would fasten it somehow - depending on your skill level, that could be anything from removing the flange and removing those studs- drilling out the holes and re-tapping....to perhaps some simpler ways of tying the two pieces together (drilling different new holes, etc. etc.)

    But, in summary, I think you need to attach those two piece to each other.
  4. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    1. I would find this to be an issue. It should be easy to remove with a gasket separating the stove and the flue collar. Looks like rust or corrosion is setting in... or something.

    2. Based on the fact that the heads are missing and the flue collar is stuck in place? My answer is yes. Might be time for you grandmother to get a new stove. And Englander 30 would be the least painful direction to go and still provide as much heat.

    If you don't want to dump the stove, yet, break out the tools and try to separate the collar from the stove and inspect the stove and the parts. Since this tells me the collar has not been removed in years indicates to me that the stove has not been cleaned or maintained properly for quite a long time. I'd be willing to bet there are gaps in the seems around the stove and it would fail the dollar bill test on the doors.
  5. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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    hmmmm.... i think your right... but I am mechanically deficient .....

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  6. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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    btw.. whats a EPA wooodstove? I have a pellet stove, my grandmother lives on 33 acres mostly woods, so I can cut wood for her, she doesnt need a woodstove.. has there been many appprovements from her current stove? I dont mind buying her a new stove if I should... or is her stove just fine?
  7. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    This problem does not warrant a new stove if she doesn't want one anyway!
    The fact that it is back in a fireplace helps a bit......

    If you are around the corner, maybe I can help you sometime! Or maybe another member?
    Or, maybe you have a handy friend? Cast iron is very easy to drill. If I were hacking the thing together, I might even default to finding an angle where I could drill a hole clean through both the flange and the stove and then using a piece of stainless steel wire though it and then twist the wire together!

    In other words, there is little or no stress on the joint, it's just that you want them held together if possible. As a matter of fact, even with the heads off those screws, they are still providing some safety, because the collar would have to lift itself up to come off of them!

    I can't think of any way to fix it, though, without at least doing some drilling!
  8. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Browning is correct in that the stove looks like it needs some service and painting, etc. anyway......so this part will be no big deal if someone trucks the sucker outside or onto a good dropcloth and cleans it, removes the collar, etc........with a stove of that age, it's important to give it SOME love.
  9. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    If skill sets are lacking or in doubt and you are concerned about working on the stove or you think it's not worth the hassle, I did a quick search in the Western Mass area and there are several Vigilants for sale and a few are promising looking. The older you get, the more set in your ways you become at times, so introducing a different stove may not work out for your grandmother, but replacing it with an identical unit in better condition could be a solution.

    Here are three in your area:
    http://westernmass.craigslist.org/hsh/2620508011.html

    http://westernmass.craigslist.org/app/2612892627.html

    At $500, it's a bit much:
    http://westernmass.craigslist.org/for/2650098671.html


    Either way, good luck.
  10. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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    Ohhhh... I didn't think f the maintenance and the dollar bill test.... She lives in Goshen, anyone live nearby?
  11. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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    If anyone knows a chimney person in the Goshen area... I need to hire someone for some mason work
  12. wilburg

    wilburg Member

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    Oh Craig's list.. Man, good thinking!
  13. remkel

    remkel Minister of Fire

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    Looks like everyone here has given the answers I would have provided. Just parted with a Vigilant.

    Perhaps a thorough inspection of the stove is in order if you are going to take it out and give it a once over. The old Vigilants have a one piece fireback that tends to crack right at the secondary burn area (lower right corner of the fireback).

    Love those stoves, but alas, it was time for me to move on to newer technology.

    Best of luck!

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