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Vermont Castings Intrepid II 1308: fire concentrating near cat throat hood

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Brian310207, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. Brian310207

    Brian310207 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    So, my stove has started doing something a bit strange. Rather than a load of wood burning uniformly, the fire/heat has been concentrating around the hood / refractory chamber. The griddle shows a fairly low temperature when this happens (around 400). The hood has gotten red hot on multiple occasions lately. I'm completely stumped as I've never seen this kind of problem reported anywhere before.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated.

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    49,610
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Welcome Brian. How old is the stove? Has the refractory been checked?
  3. Brian310207

    Brian310207 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    Thanks for the welcome. I believe it was originally purchased in 1998; I'm the second owner. The catalyst has been replaced once, and I've replaced the access cover of the refractory chamber. Everything else looks good, and it was working fine until last year. The only thing I can think of that changed, was that I vacuumed ashes out of the bottom of the refractory chamber. I was having a little bit of trouble getting the cat to light off. I still need to get the stove a little on the hot side before I close the bypass (525 or so on the griddle). The secondary air probe was visible when I had it opened last, but it was quite charred. I spoke to someone at a stove shop who said it should be fine as long as it's there, so I haven't bothered replacing it.
  4. defiant3

    defiant3 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    Loc:
    No. NH
    If the 2ndary probe doesn't close its air gate, you'll have a constant air feed right to the catalystcausing it to overfire. It's hard to detect, but so mMANY times people have found that they get several years out of their 1st cat, but only one or two from the next one. My adsvice is to replace the probe when you replace the cat. Yes it's an extra $35.00, but it really needs to be working and working well.
  5. Brian310207

    Brian310207 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    The local stove shop charges $70.00 for them _g. I've found one online for $40.00, but I don't believe it's from VC. Would this probably work well for me, or is this generally a bad idea?
  6. defiant3

    defiant3 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2010
    Messages:
    414
    Loc:
    No. NH
    70 clams????? Go to woodmanspartsplus.com and order from them.
  7. Brian310207

    Brian310207 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    4
    So, I figured something out. This issue tends to come up mostly when I'm reloading the stove, or stuffing it for the first time of the night. The other night, I noticed it happening, so I opened the bypass and let the stove go for a while. Once I got the temp back up to 500, which took about 15 minutes, I shut the bypass and it was burning just fine. I wonder I was closing the bypass too quickly and the smoke was all igniting after it passed through the refractory chamber. I'm still planning to replace the secondary air probe, as suggested, but it seems I had some fault in this issue as well. I'll have to see how it goes over the next few nights.

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