Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: VigIIPeaBurner On: Mon Dec 22, 2008 10:33 pm

Your heading in the right direction ... or I could say, ahem, you're getting warm :lol: How much coal (Lbs or inches thick) do you have in'er? The heat will be retained the longest with the internal cast iron damper closed and the air flapper slightly open enough to keep a high simmer going. On my stove, once the air flap closes down, I measure the stove top and crack it open approximately another 1/4", wait 1/2 hour and measure the stove top again. You'll creep up to the best operating settings doing it this way. Keep the blue flames dancing and when they recede and the load is all red and flecked with ash, reload it. That operation is a whole other thread. For me thats every 12 hours. You should not need to shake the grates more than twice a day.

You do need some measurement tools. Seems that you have a thermometer. You could use two or get an IR thermometer so you can keep measure the stove top and relate it to the stove pipe temperature. Optimally, the two temperature measurements mentioned and a manometer to assess your draft. My Vigilant II 2310 manual doesn't recommend that a barometric damper be used. Many swear by them but they do move some room air up the chimney that doesn't go there when the thermostatic air flap is nearly closed at cruising temperature.
VigIIPeaBurner
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: stonyloam On: Tue Feb 03, 2009 9:02 pm

Hi Guys: I think there is some confusion with stove temperatures here. The older Vigilant (with the magazine installed) is a very different animal than the new Vigilant II. For one thing the temperature should be measured in very different places on the two stoves. This is because the heat paths are different. The vig II is measured at the center of the griddle, which is exposed directly to the flame underneath (I think). On the older magazine model, the magazine and the coal inside of it block the heat and the griddle will never get anywhere near the temperatures you are getting. The temperature on the older vigilant should be measured on the flat (horizontal) cast iron surface on the right side of the stove top. This is because the heat path is directed to the right side of the stove, up and over to the pipe. For example, right now my stove (enamel) is burning fairly well and has a griddle temp. of 250, stove top temp. of 450 and a pipe temp. of 250 (@ 1ft). I am guessing a vig II at about the same burn rate would be in the 450-500 range on the griddle surface.

One more thing, the the plate on the lower right side must be completely sealed or the air will go up the chimney rather than through the coal (the old path of least resistance thing).

Hope this helps a little

Terry
stonyloam
 
Stove/Furnace Make: vermont casting
Stove/Furnace Model: vigilant

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: kenny007 On: Tue Feb 03, 2009 9:24 pm

Hello All,
First off thanks to everyone for all of your help, Thanks to you guys i have used less than 100 gallons of fuel oil this
winter, and my family has been warm to boot!!
I have been playing with this stove this winter, I have found that most of my problems were air leaks. I re-sealed the doors and
griddle, I have also installed new glass also, BIG HELP!@!!!!!
I have been able to keep stove tempatures @ 400-450 degrees when i go to bed @10:00, when i get up @ 615 its about 375 degrees
usually shake her up, poke in the front- lots of ashes in the front by the glass, top off coal and off to work till 6:16pm which is real long
time not to shake, but she is still burning @250 degrees, than repeat the shake and poke routine again.
This stove has done a pretty good job heating my entire house, 1800 square ft - 2 story ...
I reciently purchased a second hand Stratford 75,000 btu stove, Its in great shape, has a blower, much bigger fire box..
we will see how that works next season, re-sealing her, painting her also ...




Thanks Again
Ken
kenny007
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Stratford, Chappee
Stove/Furnace Model: SC-75

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Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: rewinder On: Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:03 pm

Hey ken, glad you were able to keep the oil consumption so low with the vig. that new stove should do a better job and need less tending, or keep the heat output up during your long day away at the same intervals.

I'd struggle to heat the whole house with mine if I didn't have the second resolute burning too on the other end of the house. there just isn't enough coal mass burning at one time in these old girls to expect to run at high temps for a long time between fills.

Thinking I burned a lot of coal here last month, I can only imagine what the folks up state main and NH were up to!

Paul
rewinder
 
Stove/Furnace Make: VT Castings--early models
Stove/Furnace Model: Vigilant, and Resolute

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: nuthead On: Thu Feb 05, 2009 2:11 pm

kenny, i get the vc to about 700 and then a move the themo setting (all the wat) to the right the temp will (as for me) -100 degrees from were you set the themo setting if the burn temp is 700 hit it to the right all the way and it will settle at 600. this stove has a lot of ash and cleaning those 3 plates and using a shop vac to suck ou the ash from behind those plates is a must.

thanks
nuthead
 
Stove/Furnace Make: vc
Stove/Furnace Model: vig 2

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: kenny007 On: Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:45 pm

Hello,
When the blu ladies are dancing in the vigilant coal stoves, how high do they go?? mine are about 5-6 inches tall- they go above the
glass window is that normal or should they be shorter??
Thanks Ken
kenny007
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Stratford, Chappee
Stove/Furnace Model: SC-75

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: rewinder On: Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:14 pm

Hey Ken

That's normal for me for probabley the first 4-5 hours after a good shake and slice, and running at high temps. Looking thru the glass mine is a wall of blue at least 5-6" and leaning towards the right, where the gasses exit with the damper down.

Paul
rewinder
 
Stove/Furnace Make: VT Castings--early models
Stove/Furnace Model: Vigilant, and Resolute

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: stonyloam On: Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:59 pm

Hay Kenny: Been reading through this thread and it seems like you are making great progress. Sounds like you are making all the right moves. One question though, and I hate to bring it up again. Have you started using the hopper yet. If not, you sound like you have made enough progress to give it a try. The reason is that it gives you some real advantages (if you are using it please disregard the following). The hopper keeps the coal in the middle of the firebox and allows you to keep a much deeper bed that will not flatten out and come over the front grate making a mess. Also it allows you to put a lot more coal in the stove so burn times are much better. Just take a look at the illustration in the beginning of the thread to make sure the throat is set correctly for the size coal you are using. With the hopper you should be able to hold a consistent temperature over a longer time. Oh one more thing,with the hopper in the griddle temp will be a lot lower, measure temp on flat horizontal area on right side of stove.

Good heating!

Terry
stonyloam
 
Stove/Furnace Make: vermont casting
Stove/Furnace Model: vigilant

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: kenny007 On: Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:21 pm

Hello,
Yes I have the hopper in, I am using pea coal. Its cold here on long island tonight @ 15 degrees shes purring along @ 550-600
degrees, Just poked and sliced topped the hopper off, i let you know the temp in the am,
Thanks again for all the help guys ............
Ken
kenny007
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Stratford, Chappee
Stove/Furnace Model: SC-75

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: stonyloam On: Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:48 pm

Sweet! congratulations, welcome to the club!!

Terry
stonyloam
 
Stove/Furnace Make: vermont casting
Stove/Furnace Model: vigilant

Re: Superior Nun in a Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: VigIIPeaBurner On: Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:04 pm

Just thought that since there's been continual discussion about coal quality and brand names, I'd post about a 14.5 hour burn time using Superior nut in my Vigilant II 2310. I added 40 Lbs to an existing fire of maybe 10 -15 lbs totaling ~ 50 lb charge. I shook down and loaded up at 2330 hr last night when the temperature was 3. Low last night was 0 and I did a full shake and poke at 1400 hr the next day when the outside temp was 25. The day was sunny and solar gain helps. House temps ranged from 65 to 69 with the furnace thermostat set at 68. The stove isn't big enough to heat our 3,100 sq ft at night when it dips below 25. At night the oil furnace does run 3-5 times an hour at 0, 2-3 in the high teens/20s with the gun running ~ 3 minutes per cycle. At 0, it will run 3-5 times an hour. Given that and the amount of coal in the Vigilant, it calculates out to the coal stove running at about an average 90% of design. ({(50 x 13,000)/14.5}/50,000) x 100 = 90% Not bad seeing that it takes an hour or so to get up to running temp of 700.

Here's part one of the picture series. It looked like this after I poked and shook. When I poke, I poke along the bottom of the front grate, aiming down and in toward the center of the grates. It clears the ash and the fire hangs above the grates and I can see in to clear any clinkers by poking/crushing them down onto the grate. Didn't find anything substantial. I don't usually pull the front panel and slice between the grates.

Part one of the picture series:
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Temp after 14.5 on ~ 50 Lb Superior Nut.
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Opened the doors to find this front view.
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Poked along the bottom to view the grates.
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Remainder looked like this after poking along the bottom of the fire.
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Looks like this after shaking. Not much left!
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Last edited by VigIIPeaBurner on Sat Feb 07, 2009 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
VigIIPeaBurner
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace

Re: Superior Nun in a Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: VigIIPeaBurner On: Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:11 pm

Part 2 of the picture series after recharging on top of the weak remaining fire. Remember, that fire was still kicking out 700F after 14,5 hours :) :)
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Ahhhh, ohhhhHHH - full ash pan - nice!
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Closed the doors & top, and took a temp reading. Didn't cool down too much.
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After an 20 lb recharge, a little air and time. Blue Dancers! Ahhhhh ;-)
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VigIIPeaBurner
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: Conductor On: Fri Feb 06, 2009 8:09 pm

hey vigIIpeaburner. Man can that stove burn. wow
Conductor
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Keystoker dv 90
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont casting vigilant 1980's
Coal Size/Type: Rice and nut

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: maine2005 On: Fri Feb 20, 2009 10:11 pm

Okay, I think we need to watch the back flap more carefully. We have moved the thermometer from the chimney to the stovetop. We know that we should put a full load of coal in there (45 lbs, according to the manual, or to the top of the grille), and we have done so when things were going well with the fire, but we hesitate to use this much because a) when burning well, the room temp becomes unbearable, and b) on the other hand, if the fire goes out, there's a lot of pounds of unburned coal in the firebox. We used to try to remove all the unburned coal by hand, though we've given up on that idea and just make a small fire so that when it goes out, there's less "housework" to do before starting another fire. As a result of a small fire, we have to add coal often. Another problem with a full load of coal is the accumulation of ash. We tend the stove through the top, and rarely open the glass doors because the lip on the front of the Vigilant is much smaller than the one on the Resolute--hot embers tend to roll out and bounce off the lip and onto the hearth pad and then to the floor or rug, which is scary. Our task this weekend will be to check the gaskets and use the back air intake flap more carefully. We just realized that we started the current so-so fire 12 hours ago, and we're still fiddling and adjusting and have very little to show for it, firewise. Thanks to all who have tried to suggest things to try. We'll take the advice and hope things go better.
maine2005
 

Re: Vermont Castings Vigilant coal stove

PostBy: VigIIPeaBurner On: Fri Feb 20, 2009 11:08 pm

maine2005 wrote:Okay, I think we need to watch the back flap more carefully. We have moved the thermometer from the chimney to the stovetop. We know that we should put a full load of coal in there (45 lbs, according to the manual, or to the top of the grille), and we have done so when things were going well with the fire, but we hesitate to use this much because a) when burning well, the room temp becomes unbearable, and b) on the other hand, if the fire goes out, there's a lot of pounds of unburned coal in the firebox. We used to try to remove all the unburned coal by hand, though we've given up on that idea and just make a small fire so that when it goes out, there's less "housework" to do before starting another fire. As a result of a small fire, we have to add coal often. Another problem with a full load of coal is the accumulation of ash. We tend the stove through the top, and rarely open the glass doors because the lip on the front of the Vigilant is much smaller than the one on the Resolute--hot embers tend to roll out and bounce off the lip and onto the hearth pad and then to the floor or rug, which is scary. Our task this weekend will be to check the gaskets and use the back air intake flap more carefully. We just realized that we started the current so-so fire 12 hours ago, and we're still fiddling and adjusting and have very little to show for it, firewise. Thanks to all who have tried to suggest things to try. We'll take the advice and hope things go better.


I've found that regulating the air with the thermostatic air flap is the easiest way to control the temp on this stove under normal winter conditions. Coordinating that with the internal damper and stove top temp monitoring keeps the heat in the stove and evens out the max/min temp. I'll wait 45 - 60 minutes before assessing the effect any changes I make to the stove has on the fire/temperature. I've learned how to drive it but it took me most of three years to parallel park it :) :D

Coal burns best when the fire bed is tall/thick. When full, I have mine sloped from the top of the grill to the top of the back firebrick. I use the back of the shovel to pull the new coal off the grill's top lip. Too much frequent fiddling/poking disturbs the burn, especially from the top down. Burning coal likes to burn in a huddle and too much stirring of a thin fire breaks up the neighborhood and the "sharing" of the burn. If it's really hot and close to the ash fusion temp, poking it can push burning coal together and help to fuse them into a clinker. Clinkers prevent thorough shaking if they are big enough to block the ash from falling past them and thru the grates to the pan. I very rarely pull the plate from the front of the grates and slice between the grates.

Because of the notch on the end, the slicer hooks the coal. That's why I use the metal dowel. If your concerned with bouncing embers, I've learned a trick from this forum. Take a cookie/jelly roll sheet, fill it with sand and store it under the stove. When I poke across the bottom with the front doors open, I pull the pan out to the front of the hearth beneath the lip. I do wish they would have kept that larger lip on this model.

see also ---> vermont castings stove, need info
VigIIPeaBurner
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace

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