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Old 10-08-2015, 14:55   #16
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

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Originally Posted by Schooner Chandlery View Post
Thanks, saudade, for your very detailed and useful post. I have a Taylors model 30 kero stove with oven. Love it but I am very very careful and do not let others use the stove since most seem to have a hard time starting it properly because they don't babysit the alcohol prestart and they let it cool so there's a big kero flame upon startup. Waste of the prestart of course and has to be done again--but there's soot in my stove from those sorts of things and I tire of cleaning it up. Thus--I am the stove person aboard. On passages that means that while I'm asleep others drink coffee from the stanley thermos I prepared before going off watch.
Yup that post went into my notes folder.

Maybe I can use it as my "operating instructions."
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Old 10-08-2015, 15:20   #17
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

As an aid in priming the beast: I purchased a cheap electronic kitchen timer and mounted it right above the stove area in the galley. I set it for 2min and 45 seconds. Almost fill the primer cup, light the alcohol and hit the start on the timer. The timer reminds me to go back and light the burner and if the alcohol just flares out somewhere between 2:30 to 3 minutes, it is perfect to light, no mess, no soot, no fuss. Show your crew once or twice and anyone can do it.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10-08-2015, 18:08   #18
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

Thanks for your post Saudade, it was excellent.
We have been running a 3 burner plus oven kero stove for almost thirty years now with minimal trouble.
One way of helping to unclog a carbon-blocked burner if it is off the stove and dismantled:
Cut around 120 mm of say 2.5mm stainless wire and chuck it in a small reversible drill.
Fray the free end a little.
Running the drill with the lay of the wire, insert the wire into a burner tube and it will work away at the carbon.
If you then reverse the drill so you are running against the lay of the wire, the end will splay out a little and really give the inside of the burner tube a good polish.
Just keep working the wire up and down along the length of the tube.

Regards,

Richard.
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Old 10-08-2015, 19:17   #19
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

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Originally Posted by hpeer View Post
...I think that's why they are not more popular, folks want more apparent simplicity....
Apparent simplicity.... excellent way to put it.

I had a kero stove for many years and never had any problems, smell or soot.

Most people choose gas because they are simple to light. They also make sure to remove from the equation the precise installation method, certifications, and constant worry, monitoring and maintenance of the components. Simple it appears...
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Old 10-08-2015, 19:18   #20
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

I'm switching to non pressurized alcohol. Simple.
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Old 10-08-2015, 20:22   #21
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

I've used non-pressure alcohol stoves, like them very much and would use one before propane for sure. The fuel is a little more costly and, since I have a very good carbon monoxide detector in my galley, I've noted the non-pressure alcohol burners give CO at a higher rate than the pressure kerosene stove or my non-pressure kerosene lamps that I sometimes use do. Specifically the alcohol stoves (Oringio single burner or Trangia single burner) give more than 30ppm steady (up to 200 ppm) whereas the kerosene doesn't even trip the 30ppm level. So when using alcohol, I had to ventilate.

But really, it's not that hard to do a great job using a pressure kero stove--once you get the stove cleaned up nicely and get a system in place for lighting and using it properly. I appreciate the post about using a timer for folks who don't have some natural patience or might forget things. I prefer not to use too much alcohol in the prestart and have learned that it takes very little to do the job--and it's very quick, too. I have a little fiber pad (suppose it's fiberglass) sold by Taylors to line the pre-heat cup with--it helps you to not spill kero if you're in a seaway but it also makes it possible to use very little alcohol during each pre-start. Anything between a teaspoon and tablespoon quantity of denatured alcohol will do the job (so that's very quick) and if you're at the ready with your lighter, you can flick the bic and have a perfect start every time. Oh--that's the other thing, I used to try to start the stove with the preheat flame itself. That works but requires that you use more alcohol than my method Now, I just wait for it to die out before striking the lighter for a perfect light.

We live aboard and I cook 2 meals a day, sometimes 3 sometimes make coffee at other times and I can't recall the last time I didn't have a clean burning start. I think it was, maybe, in 2013. So, once you've got your own technique (timer, whatever) and don't deviate, you're good to go.

Other things that can screw you up -- using an inappropriate tank (e.g. carbon steel propane tank) and letting it go dry will almost certainly put bits of rust in your fuel system. I observed this on a friend's boat and they had quite a few problems just because of the tank and letting it go dry. They had a fuel filter but it didn't really do the job.

I also note that the Taylors likes to cook between 7 and 10 psi but if you're making popcorn or doing something with a very large pot (cooking crabs, etc), you'll need to pump up the pressure to more like 15 or 20 psi. Just don't let the system stay charged up to those higher pressures when you turn it off as it's not intended to be used at higher pressures. There are some people who have problems with simmering who use a valve in their pressure feed to moderate the fuel flow while leaving the burner wide open on the stove top. I haven't done that myself.

Best of luck! Brenda
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Old 10-08-2015, 20:36   #22
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

Try this forum Classic Camp Stoves

AND, +1 for The Base Camp as has already been mentioned.

I bought this pressurized kerosene lamp from him (Mike at The Base Camp) and had it shipped to the US. It is a 1945 post-WWII Vapalux civilian model. They look real purdy polished up, but I am leaving mine original.

More recently Mike got me this old Taylors 1965 vintage kero heater, it works (he fixed it). The shiny pic with the wine bottle is what they look like when spiffed up with a bit o' polish.

And... do you see a pattern here?

He also found me an Optimus 155W old boat stove. I have been wanting one since Hal Roth mentioned it in How to Sail Around the World. Honestly, the Optimus was the real find as they are hard to come by.
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Old 11-08-2015, 03:38   #23
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

Many good lighting tips already posted

Here's mine...

I use the preheat flame to start the cooking process. Stick the kettle or whatever as soon as the alcohol is fired up and just when it is dying, open the kero valve.
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Old 11-08-2015, 11:37   #24
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

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Many good lighting tips already posted

Here's mine...

I use the preheat flame to start the cooking process. Stick the kettle or whatever as soon as the alcohol is fired up and just when it is dying, open the kero valve.
I do, also, always put the kettle on first. I used to do as you do, when it is dying open the valve but I find the cleanest burn is just to let it die and then use a lighter to spark the kero. All blue flame that way. Anytime I see yellow or orange flame I know there's extra fuel in the mix so there's a little bit of sooty dirt getting onto the stove from it.

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Old 12-08-2015, 03:14   #25
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

Good point SC!
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Old 12-08-2015, 22:48   #26
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

I used kerosene for about 4 years full time cruising in the 70s and 80s. I removed the priming cups and used Tilly wicks (they clamp on the base of the burner) and never had to worry about spilled alcohol. They clamp somewhat like a cloths pin. Worked wonderfully! They were about $1 each back then, but I priced them a couple of years ago and they were $7 or $8 each. I also used them on my Taylors heater. They were originally used for the pressure kerosene Tilly Lamps. My last boat had propane, and I learned to love it. _______Grant.
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Old 12-08-2015, 22:55   #27
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

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I used kerosene for about 4 years full time cruising in the 70s and 80s. I removed the priming cups and used Tilly wicks (they clamp on the base of the burner) and never had to worry about spilled alcohol. They clamp somewhat like a cloths pin. Worked wonderfully! They were about $1 each back then, but I priced them a couple of years ago and they were $7 or $8 each. I also used them on my Taylors heater. erglaswere originally used for the pressure kerosene Tilly Lamps. My last boat had propane, and I learned to love it. _______Grant.
I bought a couple of the Tilly wicks based on someone doing this -- but they don't actually work with the Taylors stove I have -- the stove area for it to clamp around is too large a diameter. The little fiberglass pad that is sold for Taylors works the same way though.
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Old 13-08-2015, 20:36   #28
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

I will have to look into the pads you mention. I am surprised about the Tilly wicks not working on the heater. My Taylors used the regular Primus burner and the Tilly wicks worked fine. Maybe they changed burners later on. My next boat (bucket list) will be much smaller than my last boat (just like my wallet) so I will probably be back to kerosene for cooking, heating and backup lighting. I think it will do fine. _____Grant.
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Old 20-10-2015, 09:04   #29
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Re: Pressurized kerosene

The 207 burners seem to be readily available. I just purchased one and it works like the original. Made in India. I got mine off Ebay. Works on the Shipmate as well. I have seen prices from $200 USD down to $20.00 for two, all new. I paid $90. I personally like pressurised kerosene. High BTU out, low volume storage, but it must be pre-heated properly or smokesville.
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