Replacing my 1980s VC Vigilant, jotul f400 or f500 Oslo ?

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nhwoodbrnr

New Member
Feb 16, 2021
4
New Hampshire
Hi everyone long time lurker first time poster. I have a 24 x 32 three-story home super well insulated in New Hampshire that I oversaw construction of. I am an electrician by trade so I did the wiring and a lot of the other work but a contractor friend erected the house. The home is heated by forced hot water oil boiler. I supplement with Wood. On my first floor I have a little jotul f100 in the living room for ambience but it will blast you out of the living space obviously not an all night stove but works perfect for the application. On the walkout basement level I have a beautiful brown enamel Vermont Castings Vigilant Looks to have one piece fire back that says 1977 I purchased the south used one I moved in the house 5 years ago. It’s a beautiful stove but I end up burning it too cool and have been producing more creosote than I would like I have a metal roof. Both woodstoves are tied to an 8 x 12 tile block chimney that runs from the basement close to 40 feet straight up. The oil furnace is on a separate 8 x 8 tile with separate block stacked side-by-side so two separate flues. I know now having two wood-burning appliances on the same flue is a no no but this was done before I found this page by an old time Mason that said he always did it that way. Eventually I would like to put a stainless liner in for the basement woodstove but I know I would lose the first floor woodstove if I did that. As I don’t believe I can get 26 inch liners down the chimney and out the thimbles. For now what I would like to do is replace the Vermont castings in the basement with a jotel or some other cleaner burning stove.
I Love my little jotel F 100 on the first floor.
I have two options locally A virtually brand new 2009 jotul f400 that was used only a couple times the new home owner doesn’t want to burn wood in the dining room my price on that stove is $1200 or There is a stove shop -gentleman who fixes stoves that bought at least one F500 Oslo v2 Still in the crate matte black plain glass door not ornamental which is perfect I feel but the asking price on that stove is $3400. My other option is to get a steel hybrid from Woodstock soapstone this spring as I live near them. So my question is do I purchase the f400 Because it’s a beautiful stove in mint condition. Or should I chalk up the additional $2200 for the Oslo. I understand the F 400 is not exactly an all night woodstove but it’s going to be leaps and bounds better than what I’m running now. And yes I understand how critical seasoned super super dry hardwood is I have been helping with wood since I was a kid.
 

Caw

Minister of Fire
May 26, 2020
957
Massachusetts
Glad to hear you're updating that setup. Two appliances in one chimney is definitely not safe. Putting two liners in one flue, even if they fit, is also not safe so I'd forget about that idea. If you wanted a second stove you'd need to either create a new external exhaust pipe for the furnace and use the flue for the stove or simply create a new class A chimney for the 2nd stove.

Regarding the stoves, I can't comment on which one is best. However I can say that you want to go as big as you can, especially with a basement installation where you're trying to heat upstairs. It's going to have to work hard and you don't want to be tending it all the time. You can always add less wood...but you can't add more to a smaller stove. So figure out what kind of BTUs you think you may need then go bigger!
 

nhwoodbrnr

New Member
Feb 16, 2021
4
New Hampshire
Thank you caw for your advice.
I’m thinking if I just get rid of the stove on the first floor the chimney will be safe it’s a little big but it’s brand new and well put together
 

Caw

Minister of Fire
May 26, 2020
957
Massachusetts
Thank you caw for your advice.
I’m thinking if I just get rid of the stove on the first floor the chimney will be safe it’s a little big but it’s brand new and well put together

Np. I think you'll find lots of helpful folks here...I know they've helped me a ton. Where in NH are you? My dad has a place near Gunstock.

You should really have a liner that runs from the basement store all the way up the chimney to the cap. That will eliminate any issues with chimney size. It's not good to run it without one in general, but especially in an oversized chimney. You'll see marked improvement in draft and performance with an appropriately vented stove.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
89,502
South Puget Sound, WA
Hi everyone long time lurker first time poster. I have a 24 x 32 three-story home super well insulated in New Hampshire that I oversaw construction of. I am an electrician by trade so I did the wiring and a lot of the other work but a contractor friend erected the house. The home is heated by forced hot water oil boiler. I supplement with Wood. On my first floor I have a little jotul f100 in the living room for ambience but it will blast you out of the living space obviously not an all night stove but works perfect for the application. On the walkout basement level I have a beautiful brown enamel Vermont Castings Vigilant Looks to have one piece fire back that says 1977 I purchased the south used one I moved in the house 5 years ago. It’s a beautiful stove but I end up burning it too cool and have been producing more creosote than I would like I have a metal roof. Both woodstoves are tied to an 8 x 12 tile block chimney that runs from the basement close to 40 feet straight up. The oil furnace is on a separate 8 x 8 tile with separate block stacked side-by-side so two separate flues. I know now having two wood-burning appliances on the same flue is a no no but this was done before I found this page by an old time Mason that said he always did it that way. Eventually I would like to put a stainless liner in for the basement woodstove but I know I would lose the first floor woodstove if I did that. As I don’t believe I can get 26 inch liners down the chimney and out the thimbles. For now what I would like to do is replace the Vermont castings in the basement with a jotel or some other cleaner burning stove.
I Love my little jotel F 100 on the first floor.
I have two options locally A virtually brand new 2009 jotul f400 that was used only a couple times the new home owner doesn’t want to burn wood in the dining room my price on that stove is $1200 or There is a stove shop -gentleman who fixes stoves that bought at least one F500 Oslo v2 Still in the crate matte black plain glass door not ornamental which is perfect I feel but the asking price on that stove is $3400. My other option is to get a steel hybrid from Woodstock soapstone this spring as I live near them. So my question is do I purchase the f400 Because it’s a beautiful stove in mint condition. Or should I chalk up the additional $2200 for the Oslo. I understand the F 400 is not exactly an all night woodstove but it’s going to be leaps and bounds better than what I’m running now. And yes I understand how critical seasoned super super dry hardwood is I have been helping with wood since I was a kid.
First, you need to remedy the flue sharing situation. Consider adding a new metal chimney straight up if possible for the first floor flue.
Second, go for the larger stove. I would say for sure, get the Ideal Steel or Progress hybrid. They qualify for a significant 26% tax credit this year and that will include the installation costs for the liner. The F500v2 will not qualify and the dealer is not only gouging but also breaking the law.
 
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nhwoodbrnr

New Member
Feb 16, 2021
4
New Hampshire
First, you need to remedy the flue sharing situation. Consider adding a new metal chimney straight up if possible for the first floor flue.
Second, go for the larger stove. I would say for sure, get the Ideal Steel or Progress hybrid. They qualify for a significant 26% tax credit this year and that will include the installation costs for the liner. The F500v2 will not qualify and the dealer is not only gouging but also breaking the law.

Thank you everyone. I’m going to eliminate the first floor stove and install a liner all the way up from the basement before I do anything else. Time to research liners I’d like to do it myself.