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Old 17-08-2018, 12:06   #1
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Wood Stove

I really want a wood stove on my sail boat, specifically the cubic mini. I'll be living aboard in the Seattle area and will need the dry heat source. I understand you have to burn specific woood and storing wood can be a pain. And, the cleaning . Are those the main reasons? Why do I not see many sail boats having them? Is it harder to insure the boat with a wood stove? Isn't diesel more expensive if used regularly?

I'm trying to learn as much as I can before making the transition so that I can have a cozy first winter living aboard. Thank you to all for sharing your wisdom.
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Old 17-08-2018, 12:16   #2
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Re: Wood Stove

Don’t know much about wood stoves. Some friends of ours have one but to me it seems a pain. We have an Espar D4, pretty inexpensive to run. Needs some 12vdc for operation.
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Old 17-08-2018, 12:29   #3
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Re: Wood Stove

We heat our house with wood. We like the heat and we like to watch the fire.

Wood heats you multiple ways. When you cut down and/or cut up the tree. When you split the wood and stack it. It heats you when you haul the wood to the house. The wood finally heats you in a fire. It heats you again when you keep the fire going all night/day long. The wood keeps on heating when you have to clean out the ashes. The final wood heat will be when you clean the chimney, if you do it yourself.

Wood is a very efficient heater.

Mother nature drops plenty of trees for us to use for firewood and it is free except of a bit of gas and bunch of labor.

It would not make any money sense for us to heat with wood if we had to buy the firewood. It would be cheaper to buy electricity for heat We live in an area with a plentiful supply of wood so it is sorta cheap.

Getting firewood of the length to fit wood stove on a boat might be a problem unless you are doing the cutting and splitting. The smaller the wood length and "depth" the cord wood, the more labor it takes which increases costs.

Where are you going to put the ashes? I put our ashes in a metal can with a lid and store it outside. There are hot coals in the ashes and it takes a day or so before they die out and I toss the ashes in the garden.

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Old 17-08-2018, 12:45   #4
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Re: Wood Stove

I won't always be able to have electric for my heat source as I do plan to sail as much as I can. I will definitely need wood or diesel. Just trying to understand the practicalities between the two. Thanks for the feedback regarding wood cuts. I don't mind foraging my wood when it's available.
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Old 17-08-2018, 12:46   #5
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Re: Wood Stove

I had a small bulkhead mounted stove when I lived aboard in Boston.

It was cozy but overall a pain.

Cutting the wood small enough was time consuming.

Removing the ashes from the fire box was a mess.

At the end of the winter the boat was covered in soot from the "chimney".

On a 42' boat with the fore and aft cabins closed off it didn't fully heat the salon.

But I'm guessing that it was a lot colder than where you will be?


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Old 17-08-2018, 12:50   #6
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Re: Wood Stove

So, the cleaning really is a pain. lol. Thanks for the insight. It helps put things into perspective.

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Originally Posted by sailpower View Post
I had a small bulkhead mounted stove when I lived aboard in Boston.

It was cozy but overall a pain.

Cutting the wood small enough was time consuming.

Removing the ashes from the fire box was a mess.

At the end of the winter the boat was covered in soot from the "chimney".

On a 42' boat with the fore and aft cabins closed off it didn't fully heat the salon.

But I'm guessing that it was a lot colder than where you will be?
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Old 17-08-2018, 12:59   #7
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Re: Wood Stove

I too have been seriously considering one of the Cubic stoves for our boat. I heated with wood on land and would love to try it on the boat. There are a number of good reviews on youtube that you might want to check out.

To me the negatives would be wood storage and soot. Apparently the Cubic burns quite efficiently, so soot is only an issue during heat up and cool down. And I found some sources for compressed wood fibre logs that would work well.

But I haven't jumped yet...
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Old 17-08-2018, 13:05   #8
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Re: Wood Stove

You may also be interested in the stoves from Navigator Stove Works


SARDINE STOVE INFO & SPECS.


Small stoves essentially similar in design to the cubic and the cod/sardine have been in use for decades here for ice fishing houses.


The main thing to be aware of is that, due to their small size, the stoves require frequent fueling. You will have to cut your own wood, or have it cut to your specifications, because typical firewood will not fit.


Clearance to combustibles is a complicating factor requiring so much space to be devoted to the stove that most people use something else.
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Old 17-08-2018, 13:36   #9
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Re: Wood Stove

Let me start by saying I love wood stove heating, nothing else is quite like it for warmth and comfort.
But, on a boat, storage is the biggest issue. You need it cured and dry. At a house, farm, acreage,ect you have lots of room to stack the wood 1-3 years ahead so it ages and dries.
On a boat, a weeks worth would be tough to store. There fore you would need either a land base storage or buying dried wood.
The next issue is bugs. Trees are natural homes for bugs and once on board they will find new homes aboard.
The last issue I'll mention is it is dirty. Wood is dirty coming in, smoke is dirty coming out, and cleaning the stove is dirty.
Diesel heaters use fuel most sailboats already have, easy to purchase and store, and is much cleaner in all aspects.
All that said, if you really want one. I would suggest pallets as a fuel source. Most places give away damaged ones. A cordless saw will work for sizing it. It's cleaner, drier(maybe too dry) and burns well. Make sure you don't get the stove too hot, no pressure treated, and watch for nails.
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Old 17-08-2018, 14:41   #10
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Re: Wood Stove

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Originally Posted by LadyByrd View Post
I won't always be able to have electric for my heat source as I do plan to sail as much as I can. I will definitely need wood or diesel. Just trying to understand the practicalities between the two. Thanks for the feedback regarding wood cuts. I don't mind foraging my wood when it's available.
To clarify, I was not suggesting using electric to heat a boat. Just pointing out that at our house it would be cheaper, less work, and more convenient to use power than to heat with wood I had to purchase.

Cutting wood is hard work even with a good quality chainsaw. Then one has to split it. I have a powered wood splitter but prefer to use a splitting maul. Cutting and splitting is very hard work.

Stacking and storing the wood requires space, and lots of it, which I don't see how that would work on a boat.

Someone mentioned bugs. Yep, there are lots of bugs, which gets back to where does one store the wood so that it is dry but not in the boat?

To keep our well insulated house warm during cold weather, the stove requires attention every 4-5 hours if we want to keep generating BTUs. This means I get up at 2:00ism in the morning to feed the stove. With a smaller stove, I would be feeding the stove more often. This is with good quality oak or hickory. Less dense wood means less BTUs which means one needs more wood to burn and one will be feeding the stove more often.

Later,
Dan
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Old 17-08-2018, 16:33   #11
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Re: Wood Stove

Also carcinogenic, but in a "if everyone did it" way
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Old 17-08-2018, 17:15   #12
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Re: Wood Stove

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Also carcinogenic, but in a "if everyone did it" way

Yes, but better for CO2 (green house) pollution, as long as you're not sourcing wood from old growth.
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Old 17-08-2018, 17:28   #13
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Re: Wood Stove

If you are sailing in the PNW which has a lot of driftwood washed up on shore you don't have to worry about carrying a much of a supply of wood. You still have to get rid of the ashes though.
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Old 17-08-2018, 17:36   #14
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Re: Wood Stove

Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyByrd View Post
I really want a wood stove on my sail boat, specifically the cubic mini. I'll be living aboard in the Seattle area and will need the dry heat source. I understand you have to burn specific woood and storing wood can be a pain.

If you want a wood stove get it. You seem to have a good idea what to expect. I like the cubic minis and if I could fit it in the boat I would try to fit in the larger Grizzly model. It take larger pieces and therefore has longer burn times.


A couple of more things to consider with the cubic minis. One is the space needed for the stove and also the 20" setbacks for all walls. Second is the 3" flue pipe. Haven't looked in a while but are there any good dirctional flue caps like for a 3" cap.


Been burning wood for many years and if you will be cruising the PNW you will have plenty of fuel for your stove.


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Old 17-08-2018, 17:40   #15
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Re: Wood Stove

Thanks for all the feedback. I'm starting to "see" why there are more diesel heaters on a sailboat than wood stoves. 😊
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