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Country Discussion Topics
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1977 Vermont Castings Vigilant Stove
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DigitalMat    Posted 07-03-2004 at 06:43:17       [Reply]  [No Email]

Greetings!
I got this 1977 Vermont Castings Vigilant wood stove at a rummage sale for $70. Since this model seems to be selling online from $500 to $700, I think I got a good deal. I used it in the basement last year, and I love it. Now, since my open fireplace is costing me major electricity, I am installing it in there. Should be much more efficient. Anybody else have one of the older stoves? From what I have been reading, it is an excellent quality stove, although not of the newer burning technology. I should have a major improvement over my open fireplace though. Any thoughts?


John Fawcett    Posted 08-18-2009 at 08:06:29       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Both my Ceramic glass doors have cracks. Is it possible to buy new ones, and if so where could I purchase them?
Vigilant W
#49988C


Lindsay Hartery    Posted 04-08-2009 at 06:12:44       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have a 1977 Vigilant here that was purchased by my late father & was never installed. It is of course in mint condition having been stored in my vacant basement apartment.All accessories are still in the original wrapping inside the stove.
I wonder what the original selling price was for this stove and/or what it is currently worth ?


peter    Posted 06-02-2009 at 08:20:07       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hi Lindsey I would be interested if your stove is for sale. Where are you located. Thanks Pete
401 640 7383


Ken Hogan    Posted 06-02-2009 at 08:47:39       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have a 1977 vigilant 1 in my garage. I heated my house for over 20 years with it till my chimney became to unsafe to burn anymore. I bought it new in about 1984 for somewhere around 550.00 if I remember right. Hope that helps you. I broke one of the warming trays and would love to have the stove back in my house but have an outdoor woodburner now. It too works great.


Sandy    Posted 06-26-2009 at 04:43:23       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I had a VC 1978 Resolute which also worked very well. I now have an opportunity to buy a Vigilant II. It has been used to burn coal so had the Coal burning kit installed. The owner said they burn wood in it as well. They said it was a 1994 model and I am not sure what that means. Can anyone tell me?


Kate    Posted 04-07-2009 at 08:59:27       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have one of these that has the blue enamel and has side a side attachment connected by a dragon. It is a wonderful stove but has begun to spring leaks around the front panel and needs to be rebuilt. It also has some chips. We have decided to sell it and get a new stove rather than fix it up. I am ambivalent, as it has been great, heating our home in Maine all winter since 1985. It is still running today and love it, are just too lazy to fix it (I know........)
Any takers on buying it? You would have to come to Maine and get it in May or June of this year. Asking $700. I can send a photo if requested.


Jayne Bruck-Fryer    Posted 02-20-2009 at 19:30:38       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Searching for a manual , cleaning instructions, vents, drafts, extra
parts, accessories, instrustion manual, Do and don'ts...


Dennis    Posted 02-12-2009 at 18:11:10       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have a vermont casting vigilant stove that I broke the glass on one of the doors. Any idea were I get the glass replaced and how do you remove the door from the hinge assembly.


Kirk    Posted 07-26-2009 at 05:34:31       [Reply]  [Send Email]
You can order custom glass from Peninsula Glass in Washington State. I just completed an order there. If you send them an exact tracing of the glass panel, they will cut it and ship it to you on the day they receive your credit card payment. Two panels for about $105 shipped. If you can't do a tracing, they have my Vigilant II model#2310 pattern in their files. If you have any questions, you can email me.

Kirk


Tim    Posted 01-28-2009 at 19:48:37       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hi everyone,
I have an original vermont castings vigilant. I bought the first in
the late 70's when they first came out. The fireback cracked and
so i drove up to Vermont and they replaced it with the newer
0039IA model which could also burn coal. I heated my house
for years with it. I still use it. I am currently getting ready to
remove the coal grates and return it to full wood burning
capabilities. All of the old manual are still available online. You
can burn in upright position or flip the damper on the left hand
side and burn horizontal using secondary combustion. You can
load the stove from the top griddle before going to bed and have
it burn slow and hot, all night long and still have a fire come
morning. Mine has been going for 32 years now.


jayne Bruck-Fryer    Posted 02-20-2009 at 19:35:47       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hello, do you have an email address for the manual/ Vermont
casting stove 1977 Vigilant, Stove works.


jane    Posted 12-16-2008 at 09:36:40       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I'll post a quick overview for you and the others who seem to be missing directions. We heated with one of these when I was a kid. They are a bit cranky, but with practice they aren't too bad.

From the pictue, it looks like your handle has gotten broken. You might want to contact Vermont Castings and see if you can get a replacement. It is vital to the stove. That handle works both the front doors and the damper. When not in use, there is a little hole in the left front leg that it sits in. That keeps it handy so it doesn't get lost and it stays cool there.

Stick that little handle in the damper. It is located on the left side, near the top and back. With the top open, flip the lever back and forth and watch the damper open and close. In the closed position, the damper is up, blocking the stovepipe. When it is blocking the stovepipe, the exhaust is forced through the little hole in the bottom back left side of the firebox and it goes through a series of baffles up to the stovepipe. This makes the fire smolder instead of roar, and makes the wood last longer. When the damper is up, the smoke leaves directly through the stovepipe and the fire roars.

Start the fire with the damper open. This stove is finiky to get burning. Start with plenty of kindling and dry wood. Think like a boy scout and lay a fire in the bottom. Put a couple of small sticks, the size of your arm, in the bottom to create a draft under your fire, then lay newspaper and kindling on top. It is usually a good idea to roll up a newpaper and light it, then stick it up the stovepipe to warm it. When it is burned down to your fingers, stick it in your laid fire to start it. A cold stovepipe doesn't draw well and this stove isn't known for drawing well either. Build up to larger, dry wood until you have a good fire going and coals in the bottom. When it is really going well and there is a good bed of coals, close it up. Add progressively larger wood and get it going well, then turn down the damper so it begins to route through the baffles. Don't do it too soon, or your fire will just go out.

This stove, like most air-tights, is known for creosote buildup in the stove pipe and you can get a chimney fire pretty easily. Count on cleaning your stovepipe several times a winter. We'd let the stove go out on a warmish day and let it cool. Then we'd tie a length of chain onto a rope and run it up and down the pipe from the roof several times, and vaccum out the stove and the baffles carefully. Make sure you've cleaned out all ashes and coals carefully, or you'll catch the shop vac on fire. Once it is clean, put a thin layer of ashes back in the stove, as it doesn't burn well when its absolutely clean. You'll need to clean ashes every day too.

The top door of that stove is actually a griddle. If you keep it good and clean, you can fry pancakes and english muffins right on the stove. You can keep a pot of soup simmering on it all day too. Keep fire wood stacked around it to warm and dry, as it doesn't like cold or damp wood, just don't put it too close and burn your house down. The stove had optional warming racks for each side and mitten dryers on the back which were quite useful too. I think it came with two dryers that pulled up and out. The warming racks had a couple more.

Once you get it going, it will put out steady heat for 24 hours with little more than adding wood every few hours. You'll have to clean ashes in the morning, but then you can just keep adding wood without doing anything else. Make sure you have a metal container for the hot ashes. We heated 900 square feet with one of these, with no problems.


Rick    Posted 11-14-2008 at 16:57:22       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have one of these stoves and would like to use it but i know nothing about wood burning. Could you tell me the best place to learn or for a manual. Thank you


Pete    Posted 12-02-2008 at 17:25:38       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hey guys, I have a 1977 also that was given to me by a woman that didnt want it anymore. All I had to do was just get it out of her house.
That was two years ago and I am finally going to install it in my garage. I found all info and owners manuals at the vermont castings web site.
All you need is a model and serial number which is located on a rating plate on the back of the unit.


Pat K    Posted 11-07-2008 at 07:59:13       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I just bought this wood stove and have never owned a wood stove so am completely ignorant about specifics. The house I live in does not have a chimney. Any suggestions on where I can get stove/vent pipe and adaptor?


jane    Posted 12-16-2008 at 09:40:06       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Look in your phone book and see if there is a fireplace or wood stove store in your region. Lowes and Home Depot sometimes have stove supplies. This is not something you want to tackle without the help of an experienced person, however. Its too easy to burn your house down.


kenny b    Posted 11-25-2008 at 14:52:22       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I also need help in using my vigilant stove set up and controls any help would be appreciated


Nate    Posted 11-03-2008 at 07:33:06       [Reply]  [Send Email]

I HAVE A 1983 VIGILANT WOOD/COAL STOVE AND WOULD LIKE TO KNOW IF THERE IS AN OPERATIONS MANUEL AND WHERE IS COULD OBTAIN ONE? THANK YOU


Nate    Posted 11-03-2008 at 07:30:38       [Reply]  [Send Email]



Salmoneye    Posted 07-03-2004 at 06:54:02       [Reply]  [No Email]
You got a good deal...

I do believe that there is an 'after-market' retro-fit catalytic element for the older VT Castings stoves if you really feel the need for one...

If it were me, I would use it the way it is...


DigitalMat    Posted 07-03-2004 at 14:51:57       [Reply]  [No Email]
After all the trouble I hear people are having with catalytic stoves, I think I will be happy to get a 30% to 40% increase in efficiency and let it go at that. I'll do what I can to burn as clean as possible. Like I said before, this stove is a dramatic leap in reducing polution over the open fireplace, so I will have to be happy with that for now. I've learned a lot from the hearth.com website.


Ray Havens    Posted 07-03-2004 at 17:41:18       [Reply]  [Send Email]
U got a great deal!!! I bought a new yrs ago cost much more!! Great for heating a house burns wood well. Miss mine now will look @ them again when I move to PA as back up due power outages.


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