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Old 30-08-2013, 08:08   #1
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Best Quality Oil Lamp?

I'm looking for a QUALITY oil/paraffin lamp. Last year I purchased one online and after a few short uses on our balcony at home, it began leaking fuel all over the table! I shudder to think of the potential disaster had this happened on my boat.

I specifically want a hurricane style lamp.

Having once been trapped on the third floor of a burning row house with my 8 month pregnant girlfriend (at the time) and having to have my burns regularly de-breeded (scrubbed with a course pad) oww oww! I have a healthy fear of fire and would prefer not to have my ass burned again.

Who makes indestructible, leak proof, trustworthy lamps?
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Old 30-08-2013, 08:15   #2
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

I have a weems and plath that's pretty good. I also have a very old Den Haan anchor lamp that's still quite good. The only thing I ever had to do was get the oil reservoir welded shut as one of the seams had loosened up, but that was after ~20 years of banging around and was only an issue when it was quite (over) filled.

I'm not an expert but I think the Den Haan models are good.

Just make sure you get a good bracket for where you want to house it, and if it's gimbaled you might need to add weight to the bottom depending on the model.
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Old 30-08-2013, 08:51   #3
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

Thanks rebel heart. I've been reading all the good reviews about the expensive Den Haan lamps; on the other hand I've read raving reviews about the 20 dollar Deitz hurricane lamps too. In this case I wonder if money truly buys quality or I'm paying for a brand name?

I don't have any issues about paying 250 dollars for a 10" trawler lamp: unless I don't have to.

Any experience with the Deitz hurricane lamp?
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Old 30-08-2013, 08:56   #4
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

Not me. I think the Den Haan models, as much as the price tag hurts, are something you really can have onboard and in the family for decades.

Just curiously what are you lighting up? The 10" lamp is definitely enough to cast a solid light in a cabin. I have one of the smaller gimbaled weems and plaths models as a sort-of-reading-light but it really isn't appropriate for that.
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Old 30-08-2013, 09:03   #5
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

This is to hang in the saloon and provide ambiance as well as a little heat.

I have LEDs for reading, but it just doesn't seem right to use them when I'm burning wood in the little cod wood stove. Aesthetics are almost as important to me as pragmatism in this case.

I do like that trawler lamp!
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Old 30-08-2013, 09:10   #6
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

I have often seen very good quality older oil lamps offered for sale at Marine Consignment Stores. The Gold Old Boat web site has a listing of marine consignment stores and may list one or more in your area. Old lamps may look terrible but as the brass is relatively good quality and heavier than what one typically finds in new lamps today they can easily be restored by polishing them with very fine wet/dry sand paper in progressively finer grades up to 1500.

FWIW...
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Old 30-08-2013, 09:35   #7
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

Quote:
Not me. I think the Den Haan models, as much as the price tag hurts, are something you really can have onboard and in the family for decades.
at anything unto $400 a pop , I think Id sell the family first.


dave
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Old 30-08-2013, 09:58   #8
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

I have a weems and plath and it works well. it is about 15 yrs old.

have you thought about led candles?
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Old 30-08-2013, 10:16   #9
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

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Originally Posted by ohdrinkboy View Post
I have a weems and plath and it works well. it is about 15 yrs old.

have you thought about led candles?
I have but it's not just about the light. West marine actually sells the same Den Haan trawler jr for 179 usd. That's almost painless. Leslie likes it too...says it looks Westsail-y. LoL.
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Old 30-08-2013, 12:54   #10
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

Got rid of all my small oil lamps when I replaced/added the 12v lights with LED's. Current drain is so low that it doesn't make sense to waste money on low light output oil lamps.

Have kept the Den Haan Trawler lamp. It gives off enough light to read by and the added benefit of some heat. Not a practical lamp for the tropics because of the heat but a worthwhile source of light and heat where water temps don't get much above 75 degrees. Even though it's secured by a bungee cord, moves around a lot under sail and is unusable if conditions are at all rough. Store it in a locker on longer sails. Originally tried two of the small Den Haan Trawler lamps but they didn't put out enough light to be useful for reading. The trawler lamps turn up fairly regularly on Ebay if you don't want to spend the big bucks on a new full size lamp.

Found I have to use lamp oil in the trawler lamp or I got flare ups and excessive soot. Something to do with the volatility of Mineral Spirits which I've used forever in all my other kerosene lamps and stoves.
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Old 30-08-2013, 12:54   #11
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

Never had a boat that DIDN'T have oil lamps aboard,used for heat and ambiance as per OP. Even had a 35' sloop with oil running lights(not recommended because they will blow out in heavy air conditions, usually on the lee side where the jib is directing air from the slot and the decks are awash at oh'dark thirty as your craft screams into the darkness).
I still use an oil lamp for an anchor light hanging in the cockpit where I can easily see if it has blown out and am saving amps .

The Weems tall unit will burn all night in a gale ,but I did get get snookered with a cheap imitation of the Den Haan lamp that in the past proved much better quality.
Be careful of buying too large a lamp without thinking where it will stow when underway in a seaway since a large heavy lamp can be a menace as it gyrates wildly during rough going.
I have posted elsewhere that esthetics count heavily for me on a sailing craft but so does the history of the sport , a fine lamp is a nod to both.

.....................................Love you all...................mike........................ .
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Old 30-08-2013, 14:41   #12
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

For lighting inside the cabin I'd suggest you don't need to go to a marine store. Kosmos is an oil lamp company that has been making oil lamps since 1869. Their machinery was, and still is, powered by a water wheel. Beautiful lamps, reasonable price. Lots of models, you can pick what suits you. A general note - the circular wick models are really good, they are supposed to make more light.

You can get models to hang from the overhead or to mount on the wall. If you mount on the wall, put a mirror behind the lamp, you'll get a lot more light.
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Old 30-08-2013, 15:34   #13
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

i have weems and plath and harnisch in my teakwood interior. both good and reliable no leaks at all. bought new from downwind marine....
i have a perko type--brass kerosene lamp for anchoring...bought at marine swap meet for 20 usd. awesome good anchor lamp


one day i was bored--when i wa sin san diego still--and i found a place that sells oil lamps online..is a novel concept--i know harnisch and weems and plath can be found online, but i bought mn a downwind in sd. chris frost of downwind also hooked me up with special pyrex chimneys. they dont break with each use as some i found were doing.
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Old 30-08-2013, 16:07   #14
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Re: Best Quality Oil Lamp?

I had a Weems & Plath trawler lamp that provided a bit of heat in the winter but mostly just looked nautical. Unfortunately, it leaked and started getting corroded. My wife found an old guy that restored these lamps and we had a trawler light and mining light restored for a minimal price. They both look and work as new. The trawler lamp with its circular wick does tend to give a bit more light.

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