Minimum Chimney Length for Proper Draft for Coal Stove?

WarmInGray
New Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon. Jan. 26, 2009 9:16 am
Stove/Furnace Make: Vermont Castings
Stove/Furnace Model: Vigilant II

Post By: WarmInGray » Mon. Jan. 26, 2009 9:44 am

First year using our new Vigilant II. Started fire in November, it has not gone out since. Start a good wood fire 500 degrees and get a good bed of coals for an hour or more then slowly add coal. Have learned to crack open ash door a little when you want quick heat recovery ( 5 minutes in lieu of an hour) after adding a pail of coal, just keep an eye on the stove temp. We started using Nut coal for the first couple months but just tried using pea for the past week. WOW!! Allot less work, allot less ash and allot less mess. Nut coal I had to knife the ashes to break them up, shake the grates literally hundreds of times. Pea coal settles as it burns so half the ash is compressed as it burns, a few shakes, poke the knife a couple times, a couple more shakes and your done. Pound usage and heat output seems to be about the same as nut but had to throttle the input thermo open a little more with pea.
The big difference is amount of work breaking up ashes! Just make sure you remove the Anthacite plate as mentioned earlier. No body ever told me about that and the stove would only get to 500 the first week until I called Vermont Castings to find out about plate removal.
I don't think draft is usually a problem with these stoves, I used to have the original Vigilant Coal and only had a 15' chimney terminating 2 feet above roof with 6" pipe (stove had 8" and I reduced to 6 at stove) and never had a problem.
Burning pea coal in lieu of nut with this stove is just like getting a huge stove upgrade. You would think Vermont Castings would explain some of this stuff in the manual.

TimV
Member
Posts: 312
Joined: Wed. Dec. 26, 2007 10:06 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Older Ashley Cabinet ( pre US Stove gobble up)
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Energy King 480 EK
Coal Size/Type: Warm weather smaller coal. Cold weather larger coal.
Other Heating: Oil Furnace Backup when repairs are needed
Stove/Furnace Make: Energy King Furnace
Stove/Furnace Model: 480 EK
Location: Glens Falls NY Area

Post By: TimV » Tue. Mar. 03, 2009 12:54 am

There is a detailed video on here on how to light,fill and maintain a vigilant stove.
I watched it a couple months ago.
Sorry I never learned how to use the "search" on here but someone I am sure can find it for you.

Visit DS Stoves

charlesosborne2002
Member
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat. Jan. 24, 2015 11:22 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: natural gas central forced air

Post By: charlesosborne2002 » Mon. Sep. 17, 2018 8:50 pm

Warm, I know this is an old thread, but I have a new Vigilant II and here is the manual in case other people have the same issues.

https://woodstoves.net/documents/Vermont-Castings ... manual.pdf

Page 5 says it typically takes at least 16 feet from flue collar to chimney top for good performance, not 13.5 (p. 5). However, it also says (p. 17) that in some installations you must burn the stove in updraft mode, with the internal damper open, to get good draft--and the stove will perform effectively that way. (It will not waste fuel because it is already burning slower due to weaker draft, so updraft mode makes it just right.)

Shorter chimneys can still work, so there could be other problems in this case. The manual also says to burn small wood fires for a couple of weeks before starting coal, but I don't think that issue itself should make the coal go out. Breaking in is supposed to temper the iron to being heated and cooled without warping, just as new skillets should not be put cold on high heat. Maybe a raging fire in a cold stove could affect the seals, and that would affect draft the other way--too much draft.
WarmInGray wrote:
Mon. Jan. 26, 2009 9:44 am
First year using our new Vigilant II. Started fire in November, it has not gone out since. Start a good wood fire 500 degrees and get a good bed of coals for an hour or more then slowly add coal. Have learned to crack open ash door a little when you want quick heat recovery ( 5 minutes in lieu of an hour) after adding a pail of coal, just keep an eye on the stove temp. We started using Nut coal for the first couple months but just tried using pea for the past week. WOW!! Allot less work, allot less ash and allot less mess. Nut coal I had to knife the ashes to break them up, shake the grates literally hundreds of times. Pea coal settles as it burns so half the ash is compressed as it burns, a few shakes, poke the knife a couple times, a couple more shakes and your done. Pound usage and heat output seems to be about the same as nut but had to throttle the input thermo open a little more with pea.
The big difference is amount of work breaking up ashes! Just make sure you remove the Anthacite plate as mentioned earlier. No body ever told me about that and the stove would only get to 500 the first week until I called Vermont Castings to find out about plate removal.
I don't think draft is usually a problem with these stoves, I used to have the original Vigilant Coal and only had a 15' chimney terminating 2 feet above roof with 6" pipe (stove had 8" and I reduced to 6 at stove) and never had a problem.
Burning pea coal in lieu of nut with this stove is just like getting a huge stove upgrade. You would think Vermont Castings would explain some of this stuff in the manual.

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