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Old 19-12-2013, 10:14   #136
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

A dehumidifier doesn't really create ventilation. What is does is condense the air by creating a cool surface for the air to pass over. The type used in residential has a very poor coefficient of performance (efficiency) and as a result become energy hogs. I agree using a dehumidifier would be better than opening a hatch in the winter. One thing I should mention is that the water from a dehumidifier should be discarded and not consumed. I still believe that getting the air circulating through the boat with the introduction of approx. 5-10% fresh air and additional heat to deal with the fresh air will do the trick.
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:03   #137
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

So could I safely state that insulation is a waste of time if I increase ventilation? I am so tied of testing insulation types as it seems my bare hull is working best with moving air, however if a blanket just slightly touches the hull it begins to get wet quickly.

So far I have tested
Bubble wrap, foam, and loose fibers, and nothing.

I cant believe this issue is so difficult for me. I merely want to Cheaply insulate without all the drama of condensation etc. What move do I do next
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:04   #138
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

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Originally Posted by cburger View Post
The type of boat people are trying to live on as well as the interior volume makes a huge difference in the effort required. A full keeled deep bilged Westsail that is mostly insulated with half the living volume below the water line is much easier to keep warm than my neighbors 76 Egg Harbor that is thinly built with massive glass area and all living area above the water line and exposed to the wind. Temps here to day are in the 20's and with the windchill factored in closer to 11. The boat is ok during the day with just the small electric oil filled radiator running. In the evening for real warmth and to remove moisture I kick off the diesel heater and I can lounge in my undergarment. As I sail in the winter there is no change to the exterior of the boat and she is ready to go when we wish. Another issue is how the boat is orientated, since the prevailing winds here in the winter are from the N-NW the boat is spidered out in a slip facing due west, really makes a difference.
Nothing wrong with shrink wrap, especially if you own or have access to a shrink wrap gun. When I looked they listed at like $500.

One of the reasons I made the cover I did and the way I did it was so that we could take it off and go sailing when it was nice out. In actuality, the only time we went out last year was New Year's Eve to go see that fireworks at the Statue of Liberty, it was freakin cold out on the water that night!

Going out whenever still remains an option for us, not so if you shrink wrap.
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:10   #139
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

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So could I safely state that insulation is a waste of time if I increase ventilation? I am so tied of testing insulation types as it seems my bare hull is working best with moving air, however if a blanket just slightly touches the hull it begins to get wet quickly.

So far I have tested
Bubble wrap, foam, and loose fibers, and nothing.

I cant believe this issue is so difficult for me. I merely want to Cheaply insulate without all the drama of condensation etc. What move do I do next
If you dehumidify you use energy. If you vent you send energy out the window. My wife doesn't like drafts. We insulate and dehumidify. So far so good, got one of the smallest I could find which is more than adequate for a small boat interior. I don't think it draws more than a couple amps.
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:12   #140
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

What insulation did you install? Below the water line or above only or both?
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:27   #141
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

Relying on the advise of those who have "lived it" for several years is not a bad thing and I think one has to experiment on their own as well. Having said that, the human body doesn't do well without a certain amount of fresh air not recirculated air. Introduction of fresh air either by infiltration due to exhaust or an open hatch is a must. If you got rid of 5% of your warm moisture laden cabin air and replaced it with 5% cold moisture free fresh air it will help with built up condensation. The problem is when I hear of liveaboards being more interested in sealing up their boats. When the volume of air in the boat can't hold any more moisture generated from cooking, and our bodies it condenses. So I suggest regular air replacement and ventilation will deal with the condensation and also provide a better air quality for us to live in.
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:33   #142
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

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What insulation did you install? Below the water line or above only or both?
Me? So far just the Reflectix bubble wrap. I've got a typical production boat pan so a bit limited in terms of access, but it's everywhere I can get it against the hull. Not ideal, but better than nothing.

I'd like to do a proper ceiling in the forepeak and quarter berths so might consider thinnish extruded polystyrene foam board to go beneath the wood slats if I can make it conform.

I keep an eye on the seawater temp since I don't winterize the engine but instead vent the compartment. If the water gets too cold I direct a fan in the compartment just to be safe.

Going to put down some carpet this weekend. As has been mentioned, even if the water is warmer than the air, it still is a heat sink.

+1 on insulating the mast, noticeable difference.
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Old 19-12-2013, 11:39   #143
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

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Relying on the advise of those who have "lived it" for several years is not a bad thing and I think one has to experiment on their own as well. Having said that, the human body doesn't do well without a certain amount of fresh air not recirculated air. Introduction of fresh air either by infiltration due to exhaust or an open hatch is a must. If you got rid of 5% of your warm moisture laden cabin air and replaced it with 5% cold moisture free fresh air it will help with built up condensation. The problem is when I hear of liveaboards being more interested in sealing up their boats. When the volume of air in the boat can't hold any more moisture generated from cooking, and our bodies it condenses. So I suggest regular air replacement and ventilation will deal with the condensation and also provide a better air quality for us to live in.
I don't necessarily disagree. Truth be told between my companionway and my cockpit lockers, which are open to the interior, I am probably a 5% venter.
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Old 19-12-2013, 12:05   #144
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

Does anyone worry about Carbon Monoxide Poisoning with all of the boats closed up tight and heating with diesel, wood, and propane heat?

I think I would invest in a Carbon Monoxide Monitor and get some fresh air in.

The moisture is like camping in a closed up tent in the winter.
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Old 19-12-2013, 12:26   #145
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

Some one asked "should I insulate?"

the answer is yes... but there are important things to note.

You should insulate properly.
The condensation happens because the temperature of the surface is below the dew point of the air.
Insulation has 2 effects. It reduces the heat flow out of that part of the hull -making it easier to heat the volume. It also makes the surface 'warmer' as the thermal flow through the surface is lower and the new surface is at a higher temperature.

The issue is if there is an air space between the insulation and the hull that is slowly ventilates behind the insulation.
The small air space condenses worse as it is colder.

Either this air space needs to be well ventilated OR it should not exist.
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Old 19-12-2013, 12:34   #146
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

Quote:
Originally Posted by mub View Post
Some one asked "should I insulate?"

the answer is yes... but there are important things to note.

You should insulate properly.
The condensation happens because the temperature of the surface is below the dew point of the air.
Insulation has 2 effects. It reduces the heat flow out of that part of the hull -making it easier to heat the volume. It also makes the surface 'warmer' as the thermal flow through the surface is lower and the new surface is at a higher temperature.

The issue is if there is an air space between the insulation and the hull that is slowly ventilates behind the insulation.
The small air space condenses worse as it is colder.

Either this air space needs to be well ventilated OR it should not exist.

Perfect, well said !!
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Old 19-12-2013, 12:46   #147
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

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Either this air space needs to be well ventilated OR it should not exist.
Exactly my concern with trying to get some type of rigid foam board to conform to the hull. I have vacuum bagged stuff in situ before. It can be a pain but it can be done.

Would be curious to know what the builders do on something like the Bestevaer, which I understand to be insulated for high latitudes.

Bestevaer 53ST Bestevaer II / K&M Yachtbuilders
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Old 19-12-2013, 12:57   #148
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

Steve Dashew uses ArmFlex closed cell foam on his aluminum hulls.

Not expensive, vapor barrier, conforms, self-adhesive or glue.

Armacell - Armaflex
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Old 19-12-2013, 12:58   #149
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

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Does anyone worry about Carbon Monoxide Poisoning with all of the boats closed up tight and heating with diesel, wood, and propane heat?

I think I would invest in a Carbon Monoxide Monitor and get some fresh air in.

The moisture is like camping in a closed up tent in the winter.
Definitely. Our diesel furnace is in the cockpit lazarette which pulls in fresh air from the cockpit and the exhaust is out the transom. So we add no moisture or CO to our living space. We do have a CO detector. We also have a solar powered exhaust fan in the forward head.

On sunny weekend days we open the hatches and portlights to let the boat air out. Our shrink wrap cover allows the deck to climb into the 60s and 70s even on the coldest days as long as the sun is shining.
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Old 19-12-2013, 15:07   #150
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Re: Winter Liveaboard Tips and Tricks

Quote:
Steve Dashew uses ArmFlex closed cell foam on his aluminum hulls.

Not expensive, vapor barrier, conforms, self-adhesive or glue.

Armacell - Armaflex
This has been recommended so many times in so many threads I just don't understand why anyone has to ask if they should insulate their boats. Trying to use rigid foam boards on a boat is just asking for frustration IMO. The flexible insulation like Armaflex is so much easier to install properly, it can be removed easily if installed correctly and gets rid of the air space between insulation and hull. It is also quiet and works well in the summer to help keep the boat cool.

I would recommend that anyone having problems with condensation do a little searching of the forum for reams of information.
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