Vermont castings dutchwest over fire and low burn times

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tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
I have a brand new vc dutchwest cat stove 2461. its inserted into the fireplace and its connected out the back and into a tee that goes up around 20-22ft (6in chimney liner). I've tried with different types of wood (some split a year or less others over 2 years split) but even when I pack the stove I can't get it to burn all night. if I leave the air inlets more than a crack open it will over fire and only last a few hours. if I barely keep it cracked I can get it to still have coals in the morning after 8 hours but it stops giving off good heat after 6 hours tops. I know at least 8 people off of the top of my head that tell me the get away with loading the stove before work around 6 am and do not have to load it again until they get home another 10 hours later. I'm lucky if mine makes it until lunch time.

I got the stove because everyone I talk to that has one loves it and has not problems getting good burns and good heat out of theirs. I'm going to be replacing the old liner that was in the chimney from the old stove that was there before I got this one but I would like to figure out a solution before I go and do that. from what I'm reading my options are basically a flue damper? will going larger or smaller with he stove pipe make a difference? I know the one guy that has one runs it with a 5 inch pipe same length as mine and gets long burns but has to clean it often. the other thing is the liner that's currently in there isn't insulated, so will insulating the new liner have any effect. any help would be appreciated. thanks
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,319
South Puget Sound, WA
At what point are you closing the bypass and engaging the cat?
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,319
South Puget Sound, WA
That sounds about right. Insulating the flue will increase safety and draft, but that doesn't seem to connect with your issue. Best to start checking for airleaks. This could be a poorly glued door or ashpan gasket, loose window gasket, etc..
 

tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
That sounds about right. Insulating the flue will increase safety and draft, but that doesn't seem to connect with your issue. Best to start checking for airleaks. This could be a poorly glued door or ashpan gasket, loose window gasket, etc..

Yeah I’ve checked the gaskets they’re all good. And if I shut the primary air completely I can shut it all the way down so I don’t think that a leak would be the issue since i would assume it would still fire if there was a leak. Could a leak in the chimney liner connections cause it? Because I have noticed that the chimney isn’t the most air tight at all the connections.
 

moresnow

Minister of Fire
Jan 13, 2015
1,922
Iowa
Are you running it with visable active flame for the duration of your burn? If you are, you may not be taking full advantage of the long burn time capability reflected in a zero flame cat burn.
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
91,319
South Puget Sound, WA
Yeah I’ve checked the gaskets they’re all good. And if I shut the primary air completely I can shut it all the way down so I don’t think that a leak would be the issue since i would assume it would still fire if there was a leak. Could a leak in the chimney liner connections cause it? Because I have noticed that the chimney isn’t the most air tight at all the connections.
Leaks there would cool down and slow draft. What size wood are you burning? Have you tried burning thicker splits?
 

Woodsplitter67

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2017
2,081
Woolwich nj
Yeah I’ve checked the gaskets they’re all good. And if I shut the primary air completely I can shut it all the way down so I don’t think that a leak would be the issue since i would assume it would still fire if there was a leak. Could a leak in the chimney liner connections cause it? Because I have noticed that the chimney isn’t the most air tight at all the connections.

I have a cat stove also but not you stove.

Are you saying when you turn the air all the way down all of your flames go out. When you turn the air all the way down do you coles go from glowing red to a dim red.
What wood are you burning and what size is it.
When your saying over fire what temperature is the stove or ard you looking at the active flames in the box call that an over fire.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,277
Southern IN
How tall is your chimney?
I don't quite understand what you are saying here; "Bypass at 400 on the stove and cat when it gets to 600." You start the load and bring the stove up to temp with the bypass open, right? And then close the bypass when you have 400 on a stove top meter and 600 on the cat probe?
My setup is the same; Rear-vented into fireplace, tee to liner, liner to the top. Liner is insulated, though. I have a magnetic surface meter lying on the tee snout. I find that I can run that meter to about 450, cut the air to hold there for 10-15 minutes, then close the bypass and get a glowing cat within a minute or so.
It's been a few years since I burned my 2460, I don't recall the exact stove top and cat probe temps I had at cat light-off. I think it was maybe 300 stove top and 400 cat..? The quicker you can close the bypass and cut the air, the longer the load will burn.
At any rate, try laying a surface meter on the tee snout and experiment with how long you need to hold it at 450 to get a quick cat light-off. You can see the cat glow if you look up through the window, and through the baffle that keeps flames from hitting the cat. You want to see the cat glow about a minute or two after you close the bypass. You might need to keep a little flame in the box for a time, to make sure the cat doesn't crash when you start cutting the air to your cruise setting. Don't blast flame up through the baffle with high air settings..I think it could reach the face of the cat in some cases, and that may damage the cat ("flame impingement.")
Where do you set the cat air control? I had mine barely open, but I never experimented too much with it..didn't seem to have a pronounced effect.
You could try bringing the stove partially up to temp on a few splits, the put in the full load and burn that in while getting the stove the rest of the way up to temp. That way you don't burn as much of your main load as you would, starting with a cool or cold stove.
 

tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
Are you running it with visable active flame for the duration of your burn? If you are, you may not be taking full advantage of the long burn time capability reflected in a zero flame cat burn.[/QUOT

No visa me flame. I know how to run the stove since I used to have one where I worked and had that one run all day no problem.
 

tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
I have a cat stove also but not you stove.

Are you saying when you turn the air all the way down all of your flames go out. When you turn the air all the way down do you coles go from glowing red to a dim red.
What wood are you burning and what size is it.
When your saying over fire what temperature is the stove or ard you looking at the active flames in the box call that an over fire.

When I shut the air all the way it dies. By dies I mean stove and cat cool almost all the way down and don’t produce enough heat to keep the house warm
 

tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
How tall is your chimney?
I don't quite understand what you are saying here; "Bypass at 400 on the stove and cat when it gets to 600." You start the load and bring the stove up to temp with the bypass open, right? And then close the bypass when you have 400 on a stove top meter and 600 on the cat probe?
My setup is the same; Rear-vented into fireplace, tee to liner, liner to the top. Liner is insulated, though. I have a magnetic surface meter lying on the tee snout. I find that I can run that meter to about 450, cut the air to hold there for 10-15 minutes, then close the bypass and get a glowing cat within a minute or so.
It's been a few years since I burned my 2460, I don't recall the exact stove top and cat probe temps I had at cat light-off. I think it was maybe 300 stove top and 400 cat..? The quicker you can close the bypass and cut the air, the longer the load will burn.
At any rate, try laying a surface meter on the tee snout and experiment with how long you need to hold it at 450 to get a quick cat light-off. You can see the cat glow if you look up through the window, and through the baffle that keeps flames from hitting the cat. You want to see the cat glow about a minute or two after you close the bypass. You might need to keep a little flame in the box for a time, to make sure the cat doesn't crash when you start cutting the air to your cruise setting. Don't blast flame up through the baffle with high air settings..I think it could reach the face of the cat in some cases, and that may damage the cat ("flame impingement.")
Where do you set the cat air control? I had mine barely open, but I never experimented too much with it..didn't seem to have a pronounced effect.
You could try bringing the stove partially up to temp on a few splits, the put in the full load and burn that in while getting the stove the rest of the way up to temp. That way you don't burn as much of your main load as you would, starting with a cool or cold stove.

Yes I load with the bypass open...and close when the stove hits 400 and I open the cat just under a half turn when it’s 600 but I have tried all other options for that. I have no problems getting a quick cat light off or stove temp getting up. I have to run my stove so low to keep it from over firing that I don’t have much control. When I say I open the primary air a crack I mean it....I stick a once folded piece of paper into the primary air and close it on that then pull the paper out. If I leave it open any more than that it over fires. Any less it’s completely shut down. From what my dealer has told me the cat control has nothing to do with the burn times. He said it will just effect the cat temp. Not how long the wood in the box will burn. I’ve also tried loading it with a few to get it warm then filling it. Makes no difference. I’ve had it for 3 months and have tried every loading option. I’ve also checked out some of my friends stoves to comepare and theirs can be run with the air more open than mine without issues.
 

Woodsplitter67

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2017
2,081
Woolwich nj
When I shut the air all the way it dies. By dies I mean stove and cat cool almost all the way down and don’t produce enough heat to keep the house warm

Your cat should not cool at all it should stay active. When i dampen mine down and close the air at like 1000 degrees it my drop some to say 800. This would be with a full load of wood and the air all the way down for an over night burn. The cat staying active. Eather your cat was never actuall lit off or has no fuel to run on. My cat temps only drop when all of the wood has gassed off. This should be what your stove is doing also. So it sounds like somthing is wrong.. what is the MC of your wood on a fresh split and at room temperature. What kind of wood are you burning.
 

tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
Your cat should not cool at all it should stay active. When i dampen mine down and close the air at like 1000 degrees it my drop some to say 800. This would be with a full load of wood and the air all the way down for an over night burn. The cat staying active. Eather your cat was never actuall lit off or has no fuel to run on. My cat temps only drop when all of the wood has gassed off. This should be what your stove is doing also. So it sounds like somthing is wrong.. what is the MC of your wood on a fresh split and at room temperature. What kind of wood are you burning.

It stays hot for a little but again. Runs out at 6 hours tops. Doesn’t burn all night. It’s 1pm now I loaded it at 630 this morning and agin at 10 and am about to load it again. Woods oak and maple. I’ve tried fresh and well seasoned and a combination of both. Today what I’m burning is around 8% but I’ve tried stuff from 5 all the way up to 20ish
 

defiant3

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2010
948
No. NH
Stove would appear to have a leak, gaskets are always the prime suspect. But they haven't made the 2461 for years I thought. How would it be new? Am I just wrong?
 

tjp2473

New Member
Feb 11, 2019
10
North Jersey
Stove would appear to have a leak, gaskets are always the prime suspect. But they haven't made the 2461 for years I thought. How would it be new? Am I just wrong?

I believe they only stopped a couple years ago. Either way the dealer had a couple brand new ones still in the back so I was able to get one. Checked the gaskets and they’re all tight. I’m not so sure it would be that as it would still run when the primary airs shut. Not die from lack of air.
 

Woody Stover

Minister of Fire
Dec 25, 2010
12,277
Southern IN
No visa me flame. I know how to run the stove since I used to have one where I worked and had that one run all day no problem.
You had a 2461 at work also? How much area was it heating there? How much area are you trying to heat at your house?
Have you taken note of what your stove temps are throughout the burn? I also have a cat stove, but a smaller box so less wood fits. On a fresh load, the cat will glow for a few hours, and the stove top above the cat will be 500, give or take (no cat probe like the Dutchwest.) After the first few hours, stove temp will slowly drop over the next few hours. When it hits 300, I can open the air on the coals and hold 300 for a couple more hours. This is enough to hold room temp in this house, in normal winter weather here (low 20s night/high 30s day.) If it's a cold snap, or windy, it's harder for me to hold room temp in this house, which isn't real tight.
I have to run my stove so low to keep it from over firing that I don’t have much control. When I say I open the primary air a crack I mean it....I stick a once folded piece of paper into the primary air and close it on that then pull the paper out. If I leave it open any more than that it over fires.....I’ve also checked out some of my friends stoves to comepare and theirs can be run with the air more open than mine without issues.
By "over-fire" do you mean only that flames appear, or that the stove top meter or cat probe meter are actually going too high? In the 2460, cat probe would stay around 1200, like what you mentioned, and stove top would be maybe 450-500, don't recall exactly.
But if your friends have more air control, you might try a pipe damper...a 20' chimney has pretty strong draft and a damper should help you get a wider usable range on your air control.
I have the same setup as you do, rear-vented stove, into a tee, into a liner. I installed a damper in the tee snout but I haven't needed to use it...only 16' vertical here.
Woods oak and maple. I’ve tried fresh and well seasoned and a combination of both. Today what I’m burning is around 8% but I’ve tried stuff from 5 all the way up to 20ish
Well, fresh wood isn't going to help output, it just cools the cat, and might even stall it. The load might burn a bit longer but it's not giving you the heat you want.
Sounds like you are measuring wood moisture with a meter, but 8% isn't attainable except in a kiln or maybe the desert southwest. Most locations in the US, you can get wood down to about 16% or so. This is having a decent-sized split at room temp, re-splitting it, and jamming the pins deep into a freshly-exposed face in the center of its length (careful you don't break the pins!)
http://www.woodweb.com/knowledge_base_images/zp/equilibrium_moisture_content.pdf
 
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jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
5,310
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
Nobody who doesn't live in a desert has 5%-8% MC firewood. Even kept indoors it won't dry that much. How are you testing it?

If your secondary air inlet was closed or plugged, that would explain all your symptoms, especially the cat dying when you close primary air. Have you checked that air is getting in this inlet?

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