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Old 03-10-2016, 17:24   #31
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Re: Heating the boat

A Dickenson propane fireplace with the double wall chimney introduces no moisture to the boat. One side of the chimney brings in combustion air, the other takes out the combustion fumes. All you get in the boat is nice, warm radiant heat with no chance of waking up dead.
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Old 03-10-2016, 17:46   #32
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Re: Heating the boat

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
.........................
Another option: there are flameless catalytic propane heaters sold for RV's that work exceedingly well.
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I have one. Used it for years, bulletproof, easy to use. Used it Saturday night in Genoa Bay (southwest BC). I have not had a thermometer on any of my boats, but it was chilly, down below 10C. Would need more than one if it got any cooler. Takes the chill off under the table with the trawler lamp going above.

Real world, full time: air or hydronic diesel.
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Old 03-10-2016, 18:06   #33
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Re: Heating the boat

Since you are in the sound ---

Magic Harbor, by Don Berry

MAGIC HARBOR SYNOPSIS Puget Sound, in the far northwest corner of the Unite - Pastebin.com

I don't know any other way to post this, as his site is down and Mr. Berry is berthed at that far away harbor.
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Old 03-10-2016, 19:17   #34
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Re: Heating the boat

I'm with those that say diesel all the way.

But before you try to heat your boat insulate it. I have 75mm under the deck and 50mm on the topsides. I've found the insulation works great in the tropics too keeping the boat cooler in the middle of the day.

Then make sure you have enough ventilation.

Then move onto a heater :-
Dickinson, Refleks, Sigma; they are all good, all more or less the same price. I suggest getting one of the models with a hotplate so that you can simmer a stew or boil the kettle etc..

A properly functioning diesel heater will not smell

A well insulated boat will not have condensation problems. In addition the chimney takes the damp products of combustion outside. If it is really cold the gases will condense inside the chimney where it exits the deck and drip back inside or sometimes end up running down the joints in the flue. If that happens use an insulated flue just above the deck.

I like to sit around in the evening without being dressed in five layers so I usually run the heater in the evening to keep the temperature about 18 to 20 C. Heater off at night.

Long term use of the little Refleks in my boat suggest average fuel consumption of around 0.75L per day. Heating every evening, most mornings for an hour or two and probably one day in three or four where it runs all day.

On the other topic.. I agree with the others who recommend technical wool base-layers and mid-layers. If also have love my Gill i5 mid-layer, the sailors onesie

Muckboots or similar and the boots designed for working in the freezer holds of fishing boats and cold stores make great cold weather sailing boots.
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Old 03-10-2016, 20:02   #35
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Re: Heating the boat

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Then move onto a heater :-
Dickinson, Refleks, Sigma; they are all good, all more or less the same price. I suggest getting one of the models with a hotplate so that you can simmer a stew or boil the kettle etc..
I forgot to mention that another advantage of a hotplate is that you can sit one of those Ecofans from Caframo, or similar, on top. They use a Peltier block to drive a fan and make a huge difference to cabin comfort; circulating the warm air and eliminating hot spots.

No affiliation with these other than as a very happy customer. The motors last a couple of years of continuous use and abuse and rebuild kits are available.
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Old 03-10-2016, 20:37   #36
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Re: Heating the boat

Heaters, sweaters, socks??????
Unemployed with boat.....head south until you're in shorts and no shirt.

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Old 04-10-2016, 02:16   #37
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Re: Heating the boat

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Ah, but that oz per MBH adds up. A 9mbh (9000 BTU) heater is making about 8 oz of moisture per hour. Figure 0.8 gallons of water per gallon of propane of propane. From personal experience using a catalytic heater, it's a lot of moisture in an enclosed space in winter. Why I designed a vent system for it, which solve the moisture issue nicely.
That's an ENORMOUS amount of water.

At 20C, 1 kg of air (1.2 cubic meters or 35 cubic feet) can only hold 15 grams of water before reaching saturation, after which water will begin to condense on things or even "rain" out of the air.

8 U.S. fluid ounces is 236 grams of water, or enough to completely saturate 16 cubic meters or 550 cubic feet of perfectly dry air, or 32 cubic meters of air at 50% relative humidity. Different boats have different interior volumes, but I doubt any 40' boat has much more than 30 cubic meters of total interior volume.

Burning propane inside an enclosed space like a boat in winter is NASTY. Not only will you make the boat wet and drippy and, eventually, moldy, propane also has a certain amount of carbon in it (propane is C3H8), and so the combustion products have a certain amount of CO2 and CO in them. Just don't do this.

Either vent it to the outside like SailorChic does, or best of all, as several people have suggested, get some kind of diesel fuel burning heater and VENT THE COMBUSTION PRODUCTS TO THE OUTSIDE.

That's because not only is propane is more expensive, but there's another problem with propane heating in boats -- propane is heavier than air, and so is a very serious explosion risk in a boat where there is no way for spilled gas to escape (unlike in a house). Propane heaters in boats are forbidden by standards (unless they have sealed and externally vented combustion chambers) and will get you in trouble with insurance if you ever have an accident.

Webasto/Espar diesel heaters are great, easy to install, and not expensive if you are creative. You can buy a used one off a wrecked truck for nothing -- they are used for heating trucks.

A pot-type diesel heater like a Dickinson is also fine as long as you don't mind the heat not being distributed around the boat well, and you don't mind whacking a hole in your deck.
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Old 04-10-2016, 02:22   #38
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Re: Heating the boat

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Originally Posted by Rex Delay View Post
A Dickenson propane fireplace with the double wall chimney introduces no moisture to the boat. One side of the chimney brings in combustion air, the other takes out the combustion fumes. All you get in the boat is nice, warm radiant heat with no chance of waking up dead.
If you're going to use propane, that's the way to do it

But for the same price, you can have the diesel fuel version of the same unit, which will be cheaper to run, and without the risk of propane leaks.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:52   #39
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Re: Heating the boat

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A pot-type diesel heater like a Dickinson is also fine as long as you don't mind the heat not being distributed around the boat well, and you don't mind whacking a hole in your deck.
The OP has a small boat so heat distribution from a pot stove won't be a problem especially with one of the fans I mentioned previously.

Agreed that it needs a chimney through the deck but all diesel heaters need a flu of some sort.

I've had/seen a lot of problems with the electronic control boards in the forced air heaters and the replacements are expensive. For reliability and economy of operating costs I go for a drip diesel every time (in boats up to about 45 feet depending on the layout).

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Old 04-10-2016, 08:42   #40
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Re: Heating the boat

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My boat is moored in Seattle. It appears that come this December I will be unemployed. I'm planning to move on board sometime after that and start sailing around the sound for a few months. I know that Jan/Feb is not the most perfect for weather - but that's the hand I've been dealt.

My boat is a Tashiba-31 in pretty good shape. By January I will have done the bottom, upgraded the electronics and replaced the rigging. That should make her ready for almost anything.

I have a question about heat. My boat is using propane for the stove (force10) and the cabin heater (Dickinson). I have locker space for (2) five gallon tanks.

The heater runs at 7,500 BTUs. By calculation that means I can run the heater for 61 hours per tank. Obviously, I won't be running it at full power or all day, so that number should be between 60- & 120 hrs - at best 5 days for a tank. (assuming the stove is used only 3hrs/day)

I plan to be on the hook most of the time, and the prospect of fueling up every 7 days or so isn't encouraging.

Can anyone else who cruises in similar weather (rainy and temps from 40-50F) and with propane stove/heater tell me if my estimates are sound?

BTW - I grew up in Minnesota and actually feel comfortable in cool temps.

Estimating 6 tanks/month at the most. Pricing that with the prospects of hauling the tanks, I'd say try the diesel heater. Here's one near you that we were looking at but the shipping would be really out there.

New Dickinson Newport Diesel Heater
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Old 04-10-2016, 08:52   #41
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Re: Heating the boat

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Originally Posted by Littlechay View Post
The OP has a small boat so heat distribution from a pot stove won't be a problem especially with one of the fans I mentioned previously.

Agreed that it needs a chimney through the deck but all diesel heaters need a flu of some sort.

I've had/seen a lot of problems with the electronic control boards in the forced air heaters and the replacements are expensive. For reliability and economy of operating costs I go for a drip diesel every time (in boats up to about 45 feet depending on the layout).

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I agree

For a small boat, a pot heater is better, because there's nothing to go wrong with it you can't fix with a couple of hand tools.

On my new boat (if I ever earn the money to start building it), I will have hydronic heat, but plus a pot heater in the pilothouse. Besides simplicity and reliability, I like the cheery flame which you can see through the glass firebox door
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:02   #42
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Re: Heating the boat

Did anyone notice that the OP has a DICKINSON propane heater?

We've been spending a lot of time warning him about a problem he doesn't have. Those are vented to the outside and are good units. He could probably convert it to diesel if he wanted more convenient, cheaper, and safer fuel.

The only downside of that nice unit (I assume it's this one? Archives - Dickinson Marine | Dickinson Marine) is buying and hauling all that fuel.

If you ran it on Low for only 8 hours a day, you would need about 50 pounds of propane a month, or about 12 gallons. That's like 5 of my gas cylinders, costing about $130 around here. For 12 hours a day, that would be 75 pounds or 18 gallons.
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Old 04-10-2016, 19:47   #43
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Re: Heating the boat

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Did anyone notice that the OP has a DICKINSON propane heater?
.

If you ran it on Low for only 8 hours a day, you would need about 50 pounds of propane a month, or about 12 gallons. That's like 5 of my gas cylinders, costing about $130 around here. For 12 hours a day, that would be 75 pounds or 18 gallons.
Dang propane must be expensive there here in the Seattle area you can get it for about 3 bucks a gallon
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Old 05-10-2016, 03:02   #44
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Re: Heating the boat

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Dang propane must be expensive there here in the Seattle area you can get it for about 3 bucks a gallon
We pay 19 GBP for a 4.5kg exchange bottle. Bigger bottles might be cheaper. You can't get them refilled -- only exchange (in Sweden for some reason, you can get bottles filled, but it's not cheaper).

That works out to about $25 for 2.4 gallons or a little over $10 per U.S. gallon.

Diesel fuel for domestic purposes (no excise tax) is currently 0.59 GBP per liter, which works out to about $2.90 per U.S. gallon.

Diesel fuel has almost 50% more energy in it per gallon, so over here, the cost difference is huge -- heating with propane will cost you about 5 times as much.

But cost is only one aspect of it -- where can you safely STORE a month's supply of propane for heating? You can't just put it on deck where it could spill down into the hull volume in case of a leak.

My gas locker only holds 9kg of LPG, which wouldn't get me far with LPG heating. But I have more than half a ton of diesel fuel.
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Old 05-10-2016, 05:22   #45
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Re: Heating the boat

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But cost is only one aspect of it -- where can you safely STORE a month's supply of propane for heating? You can't just put it on deck where it could spill down into the hull volume in case of a leak.

My gas locker only holds 9kg of LPG, which wouldn't get me far with LPG heating. But I have more than half a ton of diesel fuel.
Yes! - To heat my 35' Trireme in cold conditions (+/- a couple degrees from 0 C) I burn about 20L per month (that's about 4.4 UK gallons or 5.3 US gallons). That is for sailing underway most days.

Living aboard without moving and with higher heat levels during the day I expect that to go up to 30L per month. In an outside daytime temperature of just under 10C with occasional freezing nights it stays at about 20L per day. Tuning it off when going out etc.

My heater is a Refleks 66MK-c The smallest one that they do.

I did notice that the OP had a gas Dickinson but I don't know if they are convertible to diesel or not.
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