Resolute rebuild redux

72Rover Posted By 72Rover, Apr 20, 2017 at 10:11 PM

  1. 72Rover

    Member 2.

    Dec 29, 2011
    East VA
    Well, after what seems like forever, there's a freshly painted, completely rebuilt Resolute sitting in the fireplace...waiting for tomorrow's 90 degree weather.... Better late than never, eh? ;)

    In my defense, I've been slowed down a mite: a broken shoulder sure inhibits moving several hundred pounds of cast iron about. And there wasn't much demand for a wood stove last winter. Like other places on this continent, it was the warmest since records have been kept -- that's 1876 around here. (No such thing as global warming, nosiree....) With a small, well-insulated house, I really can't fire it up until the temps dip towards freezing, and that was only rarely this year. This was one of the very earliest Resolutes (purchased 1980 - even before I closed on this house) and has consumed in excess of 80 or 90 cords. Yeoman duty, to be sure.

    It needed work, as the fireback had several cracks. So, I purchased the two-part fireback kit from Woodmans Parts Plus. Fair price, prompt delivery.... According to the photo-copied VC paperwork that came in the kit:

    "The installation of the Resolute two piece fireback can be accomplished by one person but it may be helpful to have an assistant....Set aside at least one hour for the removal and installation of the fireback."

    Seriously? :mad: Now I'm a relatively handy chap: I can field strip an M-1 Garrand blindfolded in less than a minute and rebuild a Zenith carbureator on the trail with nothing more than a Swiss Army knife. But an hour??? "The job may take two or three hours to complete." Months, maybe....

    So, what did I learn? Expect that every single bit of hardware has been tempered into something like Grade 27 hardness. Every piece has to be drilled out. The best penetrating oils, every 'old mechanic's trick' are simply useless extracting the buggers. Find an industrial jobber and buy 'murrican-made, m-42 cobalt steel bits. By the fistfull.... I found 'em for $2.50 a pop. Even these are one and done. Forget about that bloody "RescueBit" ($48 for shipping) found on the web; it worked...once.

    Once everything is drilled out, expect to Heli-Coil each hole. Maybe it won't be so heinous next time....

    The right side baffle was cracked at its narrowest. Had it welded by one of the few folks around here who had skills with cast iron. Anybody can squirt out a bead with a MIG welder. Cast iron takes real skill and years/decades of experience.

    Also, expect to do a fair bit of trimming. I had to remove a fat 3/8" from the fireback across it's entire width. You'll need an air powered cut-off wheel or a bunch of hacksaw blades. (I'm lazy - I used the air tool....) Needed to grind a significant amount off the damper and the op-rod links so the mechanism wouldn't bind up. Not sure where the parts were cast, but none had the usual VC mold marks. No blame on Woodmans Parts...they're just the wholesalers....

    Sure looks purty sittin' there with a fresh satin black paint job.

    Cheers, y'all
  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart LLC Mid-Atlantic Division 2.
    Staff Member

    Nov 18, 2005
    Northern Virginia

    Good job. And anytime I change anything flue or stove wise in this house it gets fired off for a smoke check. Even in August. My wife always says "It is about to get really hot in this joint.". ;lol

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