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Old 09-11-2012, 01:43   #691
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

Try a propane heater from a camping store. Diesel is cheaper to run but the installation costs are high.
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Old 09-11-2012, 01:54   #692
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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Any thoughts on cheap heating ideas?
sail south
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Old 09-11-2012, 01:54   #693
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

interesting lnk
Global Rich List

But actually not accurate. A low income could be coupled with very high assets and you end up being poor, since this only takes income into account.

Gues I'm a lot wealthier than I thought

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Old 09-11-2012, 02:44   #694
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

I think simplifying extended cruises has a lot to do with maximising self reliance. It's a horrible feeling to have to reprogram an itinerary so as to be in certain places at certain times, to take delivery of replacements for key pieces of equipment. And to have to spend more time than was planned working en route, simply to pay for it.

I meet a lot of distance voyagers who are on this treadmill, but I've noticed that it's usually only the ones who haven't been doing it for many years.

To me one of the keys to self reliance is to assess each piece of equipment (ideally before it ever goes on the boat) and work out what sorts of deterioration and/or failure it might be prone to.

Much "Marine" equipment, to my way of thinking, has to be marinised before it's fit for purpose. Often it's simply a question of working out what materials various parts are made of, and where necessary either treating them (eg galvanising or inorganic zinc coating, for ferrous items), replacing them (eg better fasteners of 316SS), or as a last resort remaking parts from marine materials. Most machine shops can copy existing items. Ideally it's a machine shop owned by yourself, a family member or close friend :-)

The other key task is to visualise the worst thing that could happen to that item, and re-engineer it if necessary (or protect it) if it's a critical item of equipment. Ideally, for maximum self reliance, there should not be an abundance of stuff on board which is not critical.

Often one item can serve multiple purposes. (Spare rudder blade = head door, gangplank = storm boards = fender boards)

In the process of doing this (and even the best designed equipment ends up needing to be improved, in my experience, once you've done a few hard trips with it) you get to know everything on board. Which is a wonderful basis for self reliance: generally if you are intimately familiar with it, you can often take action before it fails; if it does fail, you can diagnose it more easily and accurately, and often repair it or patch it up.

If it can't be marinised, my feeling is that it's not worth taking.


Obviously this philosophy will not appeal to people who embrace aspects of consumer society which would have Henry Thoreau spinning in his grave (obligitary tie-in to OP) ;-)
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Old 09-11-2012, 02:52   #695
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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Try a propane heater from a camping store. Diesel is cheaper to run but the installation costs are high.
Broad rule of thumb - the cheaper the install the higher the running costs.

Propane is probably the cheapest and easiest to install, costs depend on location. Main downside is the condensation (and risk of killing self from lack of ventilation!).

But if you need lots of heat and permanently then IMO Diesel is the way to go. I think the most expensive install though. (I am ignoring simply plugging into Electrickery - as that cheating!).

Over here I am neither living on me boat nor do we usually get snow cold - just more than cold enough to want some heat! I would like to instal some heat onboard, but still mulling over what. Likely I will mix up propane (for taking the chill off the odd night), plus if I ever went liveaboard in temperate waters then solid fuel, even if only a Winter install (I am on a 30' boat).....but that mostly because I like the idea, I suspect diesel would be the better choice......
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Old 09-11-2012, 05:03   #696
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

Go with a diesel heater. much easier, cleaner, no different/extra fuel, quiet. Keeps the whole boat warm. I can get our 40 footer from freezing to 18 degrees C in about an hour or so. Great when you are sailing in the winter. GEt the salon nice and toasty and you can get below and get warm whenever the cockpit gets downright chilly.


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Old 09-11-2012, 05:33   #697
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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Broad rule of thumb - the cheaper the install the higher the running costs.

Propane is probably the cheapest and easiest to install, costs depend on location. Main downside is the condensation (and risk of killing self from lack of ventilation!).

But if you need lots of heat and permanently then IMO Diesel is the way to go. I think the most expensive install though. (I am ignoring simply plugging into Electrickery - as that cheating!).

Over here I am neither living on me boat nor do we usually get snow cold - just more than cold enough to want some heat! I would like to instal some heat onboard, but still mulling over what. Likely I will mix up propane (for taking the chill off the odd night), plus if I ever went liveaboard in temperate waters then solid fuel, even if only a Winter install (I am on a 30' boat).....but that mostly because I like the idea, I suspect diesel would be the better choice......
I keep one of these aboard but it's only feasible at the dock. It does a great job. At anything more than 3/10 the salon gets too hot.

Amazon.com: Lasko 675945 Stanley 12-Inch Ceramic Utility Heater: Home & Kitchen
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Old 09-11-2012, 05:36   #698
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Careful with that word minimize. It does not mean to reduce or lessen. It means to take it to the irreducible: the minimum. A bucket is not the minimum. Hanging ones outlet over the rail is the minimum. Or perhaps jumping in to make like a fish. It often seems silly to me to make all the effort to pump the waste thru all that plumbing.

There is a word for living with tools that are good enough rather than some idea of the best. But I don't remember the word. It's a scandinavian word and idea.
The concept is "lagom" in Swedish - not too much, not too little. Satisfying, in other words. If "lagom" is in the middle of what is acceptible, "good enough" for me gravitates to the lower end of that interval.
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Old 14-11-2012, 19:51   #699
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Thanks for the ideas!
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Old 18-11-2012, 10:31   #700
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

Interesting thread, I have just read through the lot in one sitting.

There seems to be some confusion between the minimalism and simplicity. As Leonardo da Vinci's said: "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication". Simplicity is not necessarily minimalism, nor is it a cheap alternative. Simple, uncomplicated, efficient, reliable systems often need elegant engineering and may be costly.

It seems to be minimalism that is mainly being discussed here.

One thing to think about, is that enforced minimalism is just plain poverty. Who aspires to that? The word "choice" keeps cropping up in this thread and I think that is a vital thing.

I have personally found there is real freedom is not being shackled to desiring/accumulating/maintaining "stuff" (after essentially a few decades of doing this). It was one of the eye openers coming sailing. Living in relatively small, easy to maintain, uncluttered quarters, but with essentially multimillion dollar ever changing views and with time on my hands to enjoy it (and no need to multitask or keep a diary any longer) is the ultimate luxury for me. Everything we have on board has a purpose, as I glance around me there is not one single object that is purely decorative (although many of my useful objects are beautiful). I am certainly not living a minimalistic life, but it is one that has been hugely simplified in terms of possessions and amenities. Lack of room lead to one and made me realise how few possessions I actually need to be happy. And a desire for minimum maintenance and dependence on systems makes me content to live without most amenities landlubbers would consider essential. I have heard over and over that "cruising is just another term for doing repairs in nice places". Touch wood, nothing has held us up anywhere for at least three years now. The KISS principle is certainly working for us.

Bottom line with enjoying anything approaching minimalism though, is selecting it rather than having it thrust on you.

Early in this thread Mike OReilly (post #3) made a point that rung true for me:
"Put another way, we try to live with an appreciation of enough. This concept of having enough is a near anathema in our western capitalist societies these days. It doesn't have to be this way..."

I am not out here because I am trying to live to any philosophical ideals, I am just here because I love being on the water and I feel very, very lucky that somewhere along the way I have developed an "appreciation of enough" .
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Old 18-11-2012, 11:25   #701
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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Try a propane heater from a camping store. Diesel is cheaper to run but the installation costs are high.
Without too many comments on the goings of the tread,(I think it is going just fine) could I just say that using a camp stove inside a closed cabin to heat it is dangerous. Lin and Larry almost died this way. I think they were using a candle to warm up the place and got carbon monoxide poisoning. The same will happen with a camp stove. In this case it is probably worth it to buy a marine heater, and make sure it is properly vented. My diesel heater is in the back lockers, takes outside air and heats it though a circuit that uses outside air in and out, and pumps the fresh heated air into the cabin.
The simple alternative is just put on and wear more clothes. And have more blankets.Works most of the time. But if you are going to heat by stove, make sure your ventilation is good.

The comment about simplicity and poverty is well founded. I think a boat that is well thought out and the systems have been labored though to be simple and clean is my ideal. Good input! Read the co-thread about the Essential Sailors list when you have a chance. It is my efforts to reduce the sail gear to a minimum.
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Old 18-11-2012, 11:30   #702
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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The simple alternative is just put on and wear more clothes. And have more blankets.Works most of the time.
.......
If you are willing to complicate things a little, a hot water bottle works beautifully (voice of experience)
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Old 18-11-2012, 12:57   #703
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The cat ketches designed by Halsey Herreshoff, built by John Newton, with carbon fiber mast designed by Eric Sponberg truly represent simplicity. Such a boat with two sheets, no shrouds, loose footed sails and self tacking via half wishbone booms provides, in my opinion, a high degree of form and function. Very simple.
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Old 18-11-2012, 16:40   #704
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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There seems to be some confusion between the minimalism and simplicity. As Leonardo da Vinci's said: "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication". Simplicity is not necessarily minimalism, nor is it a cheap alternative. Simple, uncomplicated, efficient, reliable systems often need elegant engineering and may be costly.
Insightful comment SL. I agree with you; simple does not necessarily equal minimal. In some cases it can, but in many cases minimal is not all that simple, nor is it necessarily cheap, at least not in the long run.

What I'm talking about, as I think you are, is more nuanced that merely having less (although that is certainly a factor). For me, it really comes down to the drive to maximize freedom. But to do this I must embrace the idea of "enough." Without this as a core understanding the race never ends, and I'm perpetually enslaved to others. Without "enough", I'll always need more; more systems, more gadgets, more boat length, more speed, more places I must visit, more, more, more...

This is the trap of our civilization. It's designed to keep us enslaved. As I see it, there are two ways to get out. Either become rich (become a 1%er), or simply stop playing their game, and step off the treadmill. I can do this by designing my life afloat around systems that are both sound, and/or that can be maintained by me. Sometimes these will be minimal and cheap, sometimes these will be complex and expensive. In either case, they only make sense if they will keep doing what I need them to do over the long term.

There is no single answer b/c each of us is different. What is easy for you may be impossible for me; hence the great variation of what is a "simple system." But if freedom is the goal, and if we can thrive with the joy of "enough," then each of us can make choices that are right for us.

We'll achieve "sailing simplicity".
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Old 19-11-2012, 01:50   #705
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Re: The Philosophy Behind Sailing Simply and Cheaply

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......
This is the trap of our civilization. It's designed to keep us enslaved. As I see it, there are two ways to get out. Either become rich (become a 1%er), or simply stop playing their game, and step off the treadmill.
......
I disagree that becoming rich is one way out of becoming enslaved - if anything it generally enslaves you more. Stepping off the treadmill at some point is definitely the key though. This is unfortunately extremely hard to do (particularly if at the peak of career and earning capacity) - there always the allure of earning just that bit more, even if it is only for extra security. Before you know it, your life has slipped away and health issues suddenly rear their ugly head. How many CF members have waited until retirement to head off cruising only to find that totally unexpected problems with health (for them or their SO) suddenly curtail all their plans?

Embracing the idea of "enough" and as scary as it is, stepping off the treadmill before old age hits, is actually mind blowing liberating. The trick is finding just the right time of your life and the guts to do this.
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