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Old 25-11-2015, 09:53   #1
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Question Galley stoves

Being very new to sailing.....I have no clue about cooking on board. We will be living aboard for a while next year. Our good old boat currently has an alcohol stove. I'm assuming its original (1984). All opinions, ideas, and/or suggestions are appreciated.
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Old 25-11-2015, 10:15   #2
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Re: Galley stoves

I am sorry - what kind of ideas and suggestions are you looking for?

The principle is the same: turn on stove, pan on stove, cook, eat

Are you looking for recipes (check out theboatgalley.com), do you think you need a new stove, ...?
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Old 25-11-2015, 10:53   #3
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Re: Galley stoves

Thanks for your response. Basically I heard that alcohol stoves were more dangerous than propane. Any comments on that?
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Old 25-11-2015, 10:58   #4
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Re: Galley stoves

All fuels have their risks. Many sailors use alcohol as well as propane. If you are satisfied with the function of the alcohol stove, you might as well keep using it.

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Old 25-11-2015, 11:39   #5
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Re: Galley stoves

With both alcohol and propane, you need to use common sense

Propane is as safe as the installation is. Accidents -nasty accidents- happen when the installation isn't up to regulations.

Alcohol is "safer" according to many, since you simply pour it in the stove, no installation needed.

But if you do what some guy did who lost his boat -make a mess of pouring the alcohol but light it without cleaning up anyway- there's no hope

My previous boat had a propane stove, my current one an alcohol stove. I liked the propane stove cos it's a little faster cooking. I like my alcohol stove, cos I no longer have to hunt down (and carry) propane tanks.

In other words: both are fine, and both are safe if you use common sense.

There's quite a few threads on the subject here on the forum already, they'll turn up on a search.
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Old 25-11-2015, 12:06   #6
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Re: Galley stoves

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sail debvz View Post
Being very new to sailing.....I have no clue about cooking on board. We will be living aboard for a while next year. Our good old boat currently has an alcohol stove. I'm assuming its original (1984). All opinions, ideas, and/or suggestions are appreciated.
People on CF sometimes exaggerate the dangers of various types of fuels. Myself, I'm scared of alcohol, because it is difficult to see the flame if it spills and is burning. Others are scared by the possibility of propane explosion. And it does happen. However, we've been using propane and butane since 1983 with no problems; they are heavier than air.. The installation is not difficult, you will have a solenoid that allows the propane to flow, and a switch in the galley to turn it off. There are "sniffers" which can sense the propane, should it leak into the bilge.

Prior to that, we used CNG, lighter than air, but it was difficult to source out of Calif., which is where we were.

A new marine stove is quite an investment, and I'm not convinced there are any superb ones out there. ...and I've been looking, desultorily, for a while, as mine is old and the thermostat doesn't work right, which makes baking a hassle. Therefore, good luck with it, whether you choose to experiment with the existing stove or find a new one.

Ann
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Old 25-11-2015, 12:20   #7
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Re: Galley stoves

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Myself, I'm scared of alcohol, because it is difficult to see the flame if it spills and is burning.
The opening is very large, it's actually hard to make a mess
But I always wipe the tank clean with a kitchen towel.
Not sure why just a habit.

Not sure how you could spill burning alcohol - you fill it, put the tank back, and then you turn the stove on.
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Old 25-11-2015, 13:23   #8
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Re: Galley stoves

Many thanks to all....I guess I'll stick with what I have. It really hardly looks used and if its original, its as old as my oldest child....(32). It is definitely going to be interesting cooking aboard, but hey at this stage of the game I better be ready and open for anything! Oh one more thing....I'm told alcohol might not be easily available?
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Old 25-11-2015, 13:34   #9
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Re: Galley stoves

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Originally Posted by Sail debvz View Post
I'm told alcohol might not be easily available?
Even easier then propane
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Old 25-11-2015, 19:10   #10
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Re: Galley stoves

Our friend in this story is converting to gas!
Veteran yatchsmen suffers serious burns off Darwin coast | NT News
Certification by a gas fitter is also required for our blue-water insurance.
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Old 25-11-2015, 19:15   #11
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Re: Galley stoves

If we're posting horror stories, I've got one less than a year old - propane explosion on a boat in my marina

IOW: let's not do that, you can scare someone off using either while both are safe if used correctly and with common sense.

But the insurance reminded me of something - tho not sure if the same applies in the US - but a lot of insurance companies here will give you a discount if you use alcohol instead of gas. Might be something to look into.
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Old 25-11-2015, 19:40   #12
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Re: Galley stoves

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lizzy Belle View Post
If we're posting horror stories, I've got one less than a year old - propane explosion on a boat in my marina

But the insurance reminded me of something - tho not sure if the same applies in the US - but a lot of insurance companies here will give you a discount if you use alcohol instead of gas. Might be something to look into.
I am actually in Australia and gas (LPG) preferred. Statistics show the most common causes of fires on boats are electrical fires, engine space fires and solid fuel stove fires in that order, although research will indicate boat fires are overall quite rare. So back to being a personal preference.
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Old 25-11-2015, 19:51   #13
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Re: Galley stoves

My experiences and comfort with Propane is pretty much the same as Ann's.

Never liked alcohol as people can be careless sealing or pouring it as Ann said and its hard to see or smell a spill if lighting adjacent stove

With a proper solenoid/snifter propane installation you just need to replace empty tank in outside locker every 3 to 4 months and do a soap test of that connection to have piece of mind.
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Old 25-11-2015, 21:21   #14
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Re: Galley stoves

We use kerosene, but I'm from a different age.
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Old 25-11-2015, 21:36   #15
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Re: Galley stoves

We use an origo alcohol stove (not pressurized) works great, but as always, to each his/her own.
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