1977 VC Vigilant

Coop0102 Posted By Coop0102, Sep 6, 2011 at 11:44 AM

  1. Coop0102

    New Member 2.

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hello my fellow wood burning aficionados!!

    My wife and I recently purchased a home that has a 77 Vigilant in it. I've been doing alot of reading on this site, and will refrain from asking noobish questions till I have give the forums a good read through.
    First things first, and Im sure you hear this alot.. I have never in my life used a wood stove. Again though, im reading up on it before i ask any questions.
    In my readings I have learned about this pesky buildup called creosote. The stove was pretty dirty so i figured a thorough cleaning was in order..And boy am i glad I did.. Shop Vac'd out about 3 gallons worth of ash and creosote from this puppy. And the pipes (8in) were packed as well. It a miracle it didn't catch fire.

    Upon inspecting the gaskets they are definitely in need of replacement. However I am not 100% sure on the size. From what I can tell from various exploded views it looks like 5\16 around the doors and the top feed lid, and 3\16 around the attachment for the pipe coming off the stove. Can anyone confirm?

    After getting the pipe off and the attachment on the back that it attached too i shop vac'd all the ash buildup in the back of the stove. I immediately noticed a softball sized wad of that looks like a non-flammable fiberglass material on the left hand side (if your at the back of the stove facing the front). This didn't look right to me but I wasn't sure. So I figured here would be the best place to ask. I took some pics and have included them below.

    This is what I pulled out:

    This is a shot of where it was with the rear metal plate lifted up (in the yellow outlined area):

    Here s a shot of where it was with the plate down (in the yellow outlined area):
  2. littlalex

    Member 2.

    Oct 6, 2007
    Hewitt, NJ
    Howdy - Just did the same prep with my '77 Vigilant. Regarding gaskets, 1/4-5/16 fiberflass gasket material works perfectly on the griddle and doors. .

    Regarding that material...I have no idea. I'm a noob myself.

    I've used the beast a few times in emergencies (power out mostly) and I can say it does throw out some BTUs. House is only about 1000 sf and have a tough time getting the heat balanced so we can stay in the "great hall (16' ceiling)" where it's located.

    Good luck with your stove and welcome to the world of "smoke dragons" as pre EPA stoves are referred to.

  3. fraxinus

    Feeling the Heat 2.

    Aug 3, 2007
    coastal Maine
    Go to http://legacy.vermontcastings.com/content/support/manuals.cfm and you should be able to download an owner's manual for your stove.

    Given the condition of the stove in the pictures, it's very likely it needs more than gaskets to operate in an efficient and safe manner. It may well need a complete rebuild - you'll have to decide if it's worth the cost. If you can locate a dealer or someone else nearby who knows about older VC stoves, this would be the best way to find out what your stove needs.

Share This Page