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Old 03-09-2012, 06:48   #16
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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Yeah, but if you screw up the toilet installation your house doesn't burn down. Worst case is you might end up with some s#*t on the floor!

My point exactly, considering the ramifications of a poor install one would think they would want to do their best to make absolutely sure the install goes properly.

Regarding the description of how to route the metal section of fuel lines, does Kohler include instructions for getting the water to the toilet or the discharge out of the house? That is what you are asking from the Dickinson instructions.
Not asking Dickinson to tell me how to route the lines to the stove, that's already been done. Kohler at least provides a simple "Rough out" diagram showing the measurements of where to cut the opening to bring the supply line through the floor. It would have been nice if Dickinson had done this to at least get me started and prevent having to take the whole thing apart only to find out this was the wrong direction.

The issue is I have to make the transition from the rubber fuel line to copper tubing for the last couple of feet and when you look at the orientation of the inlet nipple on the side of the metering it appears if I will be required to make multiple bends in the tubing to make the connection as well as hide the line from view rather than on simple gentle bend as I had originally thought.
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Old 03-09-2012, 07:39   #17
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

I would not fault Dickenson. The installation of a gravity heater in a boat that moves abruptly on all axis, the chimney is short, the air flow past the top cap intermittently blocked by boat and hardware depending on wind direction relative to the boat, the fresh air into the cabin and thus the heater cannot be determined by the company, the fuel feed, the fuel pressure and a couple of dozen of other issues are completely beyond the companies control. Fans are often not needed but recommended because most people don’t have a clue as to what will actually work if the heater is naturally aspirated so to be safe stick in the fan kit.

Every one is a custom installation and there is no way the company can anticipate where you route the fuel line! Wow, the fuel line needs bends, welcome to the real world! Consider yourself lucky that it’s copper, not steel. A spring bender will make very tight radius bends in copper and the professional has one in his tool box.

Dickinson makes great products and stands behind them. I don’t think they are recommending the novice install the heater. Get help and you will be ok, sounds as if this is over your head which it is for the average do it yourselfer.
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Old 03-09-2012, 07:50   #18
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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Not asking Dickinson to tell me how to route the lines to the stove, that's already been done. It would have been nice if Dickinson had done this to at least get me started and prevent having to take the whole thing apart only to find out this was the wrong direction.

The issue is I have to make the transition from the rubber fuel line to copper tubing for the last couple of feet and when you look at the orientation of the inlet nipple on the side of the metering it appears if I will be required to make multiple bends in the tubing to make the connection as well as hide the line from view rather than on simple gentle bend as I had originally thought.
I agree there should be better instruction with more alternative installation scenario's.. The instructions are recommending minimal bends in the supply tubing for a gravity tank install. I'm guessing you are going the pump route?
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:17   #19
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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Pretty rough post pal, I am much smarter than the equipment I am installing, just wondering what happens when the relatively inexperienced tries to to put this heater in and burns the boat to the water line killing himself and family. Can see the lawyers circling already. Shame the company doesn't value your life, or have a little more pride in what they do, sign of the times.
I think he meant it as a joke,,,
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:39   #20
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

It's universal, I have a Refleks, their installation instructions are vague and operating instructions worse!. There is a lot of reading between the lines and it is very helpful to check out one that is working on another boat; it will answer a lot of questions.
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Old 03-09-2012, 13:21   #21
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Wait till you light it. Go very slowly start low and increase a little at a time. It responds very slowly and is easy to over heat. The electric fan assist helps alot.
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Old 03-09-2012, 18:27   #22
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

Thanks for all who made constructive responses. I met up with a friend who is an aviation mechanic today and he was kind enough to come on the boat and have a look at the project. He pointed out that all that was needed was to utilize a couple of 90 degree bends in the copper tubing rather than trying to bend the tube to conform to all the turns, problem solved.
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Old 03-09-2012, 19:11   #23
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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A buddy of mine said to expect that from the Canadians, Dickinson is a well established company. The heater has a plate on the front that says "Since 1932". I've got better things to do than milk the company over the phone for information that common sense would dictate should of been provided in the first place. I think that's what I am more angry about, the thought that simple common sense is a vanishing commodity.
Excuse me, Don't slag off Canadians I have seen instructions from all over the world including currently the most paranoid country in the world that have been dreadful.
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Old 03-09-2012, 20:27   #24
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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I met up with a friend who is an aviation mechanic today and he was kind enough to come on the boat and have a look at the project. He pointed out that all that was needed was to utilize a couple of 90 degree bends in the copper tubing rather than trying to bend the tube to conform to all the turns, problem solved.
Thank the gods for the aero industry.
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Old 03-09-2012, 22:16   #25
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

I installed a Dickinson diesel heater in my last boat back in the early 2000s. I had a problem with it filling up the cabin with smoke + soot. It happened once while I was sleeping. It made a mess of the boat and was quite scary. I took the unit apart and found that a part was installed incorrectly during its construction(burner plate upside down...maybe, it was a long time ago). Having dealt with an old kerosene unit and now a scary/messy diesel heater, I decided to go gas. I sent it back and ordered a P9000 propane unit which I loved. I am not trashing Dickinson, I believe they make a great product and if I need another heater it will be another Dickinson propane unit. I guess I am just saying make sure everything is 100% with the install and it never hurts to check the the assembly. My little P9000 helped me survive 4 winters aboard in RI.
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Old 04-09-2012, 05:37   #26
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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I installed a Dickinson diesel heater in my last boat back in the early 2000s. I had a problem with it filling up the cabin with smoke + soot. It happened once while I was sleeping. It made a mess of the boat and was quite scary. I took the unit apart and found that a part was installed incorrectly during its construction(burner plate upside down...maybe, it was a long time ago). Having dealt with an old kerosene unit and now a scary/messy diesel heater, I decided to go gas. I sent it back and ordered a P9000 propane unit which I loved. I am not trashing Dickinson, I believe they make a great product and if I need another heater it will be another Dickinson propane unit. I guess I am just saying make sure everything is 100% with the install and it never hurts to check the the assembly. My little P9000 helped me survive 4 winters aboard in RI.
I am very soon to be a full time live aboard and am betting that the Newport is going to be "Just the ticket" for surviving the long cold NY winters. That being said as part of the install it will be checked out completely. The siting of the unit will not allow the use of the barometric damper that Dickinson so strongly recommends, resulting in having the highest flew that can be reasonably be installed in an attempt to insure a good draw.
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Old 04-09-2012, 06:25   #27
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

To add to my previous post, the the big Newport diesel heater (16k btu i think) was way more effective than the P9000 LPG unit. I was in a 34 foot boat and to say the boat was toasty with the Newport on the low setting would have been a major understatement.
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:11   #28
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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Thanks for all who made constructive responses. I met up with a friend who is an aviation mechanic today and he was kind enough to come on the boat and have a look at the project. He pointed out that all that was needed was to utilize a couple of 90 degree bends in the copper tubing rather than trying to bend the tube to conform to all the turns, problem solved.
If it's any consolation, that looks like a nice install.

You might want to switch that nearby AC outlet to GFCI, though. It's a better option for boats in water!
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:13   #29
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Re: Piss Poor Instructions

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To add to my previous post, the the big Newport diesel heater (16k btu i think) was way more effective than the P9000 LPG unit. I was in a 34 foot boat and to say the boat was toasty with the Newport on the low setting would have been a major understatement.
16K BTU is a lot for a 34 footer. I have a 12K Mermaid heat pump (A/C and heat) currently in a 41 foot steel boat, and it's great and sufficient. When we transiting to living aboard, I am thinking of a small diesel unit (Webasto, perhaps) to supplement this for the coldest days when trying to extract heat from cold water is a losing game.
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Old 04-09-2012, 11:03   #30
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Re: Diesel Heater - Piss Poor Instructions

Its not enough that their dollar is now worth more than ours--NOW they are deliberately "dumbing" down instructions for us
WHAT NEXT?--Calories in place of BTU.
BTW--installation looks first class--that'll show um, eh?
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