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Old 09-12-2018, 10:35   #91
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Re: Cabin Heaters: Which is Best and Why?

I see Varsol is a brand of "white spirit".

Did not know that was an option in diesel / kero stoves. Isn't it a lot more expensive?

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Old 10-12-2018, 08:52   #92
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Re: Cabin Heaters: Which is Best and Why?

Originally Posted by schaf View Post
Living in Canada sailing in the PNW and sailing year round I enjoy having diesel for heat and a kerosine stove I don't have any gas on board for the simplicity and safety it provides. My heater is a Dickenson Arctic heater about 20 years old with a cast iron top this burns approx .75 ltrs of fuel a day and will boil water on a high setting. I generally keep it on its lowest setting which keeps my 30 ft boat nicely comfortable. I can leave it on when sailing and generally leave a kettle on top to keep a constant supply of hot water if I want to hove to and make a quick cup of tea or instant soup. It requires no electricity and is very dependable. In my stove I burn varsol as it is a nice clean fuel and readily available. As a single hander simplicity is paramount as is availability of fuel in remote areas. The only drawback is having to clean the heater once a week if I'm burning it continually or soot will build up and it becomes a bit messy. Otherwise this is one of my favorite pieces of gear because I can enjoy my boat any time of year and love being out even in the Canadian winter.
We've had a couple of heaters in various boats over the years, a kerosene Dickinson Newport which was smelly and scary and an Espar air heater that had many problems, although once we had them sorted out it was good. Probably we should have persisted with troubleshooting the Dickinson but we were seduced by an Espar on a charter boat in the UK.

With our latest smaller boat, and just the need for occasional heat when at anchor in the Spring/Fall, we are looking at a Cubic Mini wood stove (Warning: I hate websites that play music without asking!!).

A friend has one of these on his boat and is pleased with it, the whole package was quite reasonable with a nicely designed mount for the bulkhead.

I think the only downside is that it is really small and the fuel has to be cut to less than 6 inches.

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