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Old 02-10-2016, 16:59   #1
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Heating the boat

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.
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Old 02-10-2016, 17:16   #2
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Re: Heating the boat

I've got a propane Dickinson, too, but in a larger space with lower morning temperatures. If you can close the boat up tightly, which is OK with the Dickenson being totally isolated from cabin air, I should think you'll be OK. Wear sweaters and have a good sleeping bag.
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Old 02-10-2016, 17:27   #3
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Re: Heating the boat

I'd explore diesel cabin heaters.
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Old 02-10-2016, 17:42   #4
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Re: Heating the boat

One word: wool. Wear lots of it. Sweater, socks, mittens, wool long johns.
Warm when wet. The best personal insulator.
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Old 02-10-2016, 18:25   #5
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Re: Heating the boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
I'd explore diesel cabin heaters.
What Terra Nova said . And in a boat that size, a drip feed heater should be more than enough. Vs. something with ducting & forced air. Especially when you look at their rated BTU output.

They'll also let you go a long time without looking for fuel, & should provide you with more than enough warm, dry heat. Also, if you can, find/get one with built in water heating coils. It's a handy feature, both on land & at sea.

Ah, & I'm more of a fan of synthetic long underwear & warm clothes. They're much cheaper, & far more durable. Though with a good diesel heater you won't much need them belowdecks.

Sorry to hear the news about your job, & I wish you luck in remedying the situation. I've been in the same position, so I know how it feels. Luckily you have a good home, as did I. Oh, & how are your anchoring setups (plural)? Ditto on your tender(s)?
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Old 02-10-2016, 18:28   #6
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Re: Heating the boat

Heating The Boat?
I open the ports!
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Old 02-10-2016, 19:40   #7
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Re: Heating the boat

Diesel is the way to go. You have it on board, it's safer, and with the right stove/heater you get hot water. You can find a used diesel stove, sailboat size, for about $300.
Water vapor is a by-product of propane cooking. It makes your boat wet. With diesel heat and cooking, your boat, clothes, bedding stays dry.
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Old 02-10-2016, 20:00   #8
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Re: Heating the boat

If you do want to go diesel I have a friend that is selling his Dickinson Newport diesel eater for cheap. He is in port Townsend . So local for us
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Old 02-10-2016, 20:08   #9
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Re: Heating the boat

I originally had a Force 10 diesel heater, but converted it to propane since I could not stand the diesel smell. Much easier to light too.
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Old 02-10-2016, 20:10   #10
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Re: Heating the boat

Had both, prefer the propane.
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Old 02-10-2016, 20:15   #11
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Re: Heating the boat

wrwakefield likely has some insights into this, given that their boat is in SE Alaska. That in addition to some good information on it in their blog Denali Rose: Living on a boat in cold weather... As in this post on there, they have info on condensation, keeping a bunk dry via ventillation under the mattress, heating thoughts, bedding for cool climates, etc.
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Old 02-10-2016, 22:07   #12
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Re: Heating the boat

The way I read the OP question is that he already has a Dickinson heater and is curious about full time usage rates.

You can find the burn rates for low and high settings on the Dickinson site for each heater.

For example the most common in their line:

Newport Diesel

Fuel Consumption / 24hr:
1.29 gal LOW
3.20 gal HIGH

Heat Output:
Low: 6500 BTU
High: 16250 BTU
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Old 02-10-2016, 22:54   #13
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Re: Heating the boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sea Dreaming View Post
One word: wool. Wear lots of it. Sweater, socks, mittens, wool long johns.
Warm when wet. The best personal insulator.
I'd pass on the wool. Spent my childhood frozen in wet wool clothing.

Technical clothing in layers will beat wool any day. Not to mention the itching with wool.

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Old 02-10-2016, 23:29   #14
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Re: Heating the boat

One note: a 5 gallon propane tank only holds about 4.5 gallons. That is they are only filled to 80% max. So max run time with two full tanks is 112 hours
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Old 02-10-2016, 23:39   #15
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Re: Heating the boat

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Originally Posted by leftbrainstuff View Post
I'd pass on the wool. Spent my childhood frozen in wet wool clothing.

Technical clothing in layers will beat wool any day. Not to mention the itching with wool.

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I known wool isn't a popular choice. But I much prefer my woolies to the newer stuff and I've had plenty of both growing up in the Colorado rockies. Good quality wool does not itch and if your woolies are so wet you arent warm, you need to change your clothing. That wet thechnical gear wont keep you warm either. Layers are always a must no matter which way one goes. It really is a personal choice.
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