In no way did I mean any offense to you or anyone else that choses alcohol. I think that it was in fact the correct choice for you. There is absolutely nothing wrong with alcohol for what you are dong, because it is obviously working for you, and you are happy with it's down sides. My apologies if you were offended.
You did, however, miss the spirit of what I was saying, and I was addressing ONLY folks that hadn't yet equipped their boats. All of my information was true, and I have no bias. I was trying to be helpful. If I had a smaller boat, and mostly cruised close to hardware
stores, only cruised occasionally and owned a house as well as my boat, I WOULD consider the Origo stove! DEFINITELY!!! It is hands down better than the one that set my first cruising boat on fire 34 years ago! I had a friend with an Origo, and he loved his. (on a 22' boat). It is a fine little stove and fuel
source, in that context. That is NOT the context that I was talking about.
If you haven't had a propane
stove onboard for over 20 years, you don't know how easy it is to find propane
, or how much more convenient it is to use.
You miss quoted me in every case... As a boatbuilder
for over 40 years, (and an ABYC member
for much of it), I have bought a lot of denatured alcohol, as I used to use it daily as a cleaning
solvent. It is in fact available at a lot of hardware
stores, all over the US. I never, however, found any within walking distance of my home at the time, The closest small town, or my anchored out boat... (the Eastern Caribbean
may be an exception... when I cruised there, I wasn't looking for alcohol). I found Propane everywhere I went, but needed to buy it so rarely. My experience has been that there are a LOT more filling stations carrying propane, within walking distance of anchorages
, than there are hardware stores carrying alcohol, by a huge margin. (in numerous transits of the ICW
, or all over the Chesapeake)
As a person who has spent all of my land life using propane for heat, I can assure you that the number of people on earth, that regularly use propane, out number those that regularly use denatured alcohol, by an astronomical number. (perhaps 100,000 to 1) PROPANE IS MORE COMMONLY AVAILABLE, especially in third world little towns that need propane to cook, but have NO hardware stores. (like all over the Bahamas
or Central America).
I didn't say Alcohol "smelled". I said it had more smell than propane does "once propane is lit." (propane stinks "big time" before it is lit!) I don't consider Alcohol's smell a big deal, and I said so. I would however get the best quality alcohol, just like I only use pure "liquid paraffin lamp oil" in our dinette lantern. Both are quite expensive.
It was test by Practical Sailor, among others, that confirmed that the Origo was not as quick to boil water
. Not MY opinion... (During the 21 years I spent building my own 3 cruising boats, To keep enthusiastic about it, I read (on average) 20 magazines, journals, and trade
publications a month. Among them was Practical Sailor, which I have received for over 30 years. With the total of all this information being over 5,000 monthly publications, not counting the books
, Plus there was all of the ABYC information to "try" to absorb, I can't remember exactly who did this test and who did that test. No, I can't point to a link
that will tell you where a lifetime of research
and experience came from.
The other mis quote was about "100 X harder"... Obviously I was making generalizations, when I said that: within walking distance of an anchorage, in much of the Bahamas
, or Central America
, Alcohol was a hundred times harder to find.
This IS true in much of the Bahamas. There are many places that don't have bread or water for sale
, but DO sell propane. It is much more available than denatured alcohol, once away from hardware stores. This is doubly true in places like: Isla Mujeres, Mexco... Placencia, Belize
... or Fronteres, (up the Rio Dulce), in Guatemala
. Propane is more available there too.
I have MANY cruising friends, several circumnavigators... from Panama
, New Zealand
, South Africa
, Switzerland, Germany
, as well as up and down the Caribbean
. They ALL chose propane, and would agree that it IS more readily available than alcohol, but the real reason that people from all over the world choose propane, is the creature comfort of just flipping a switch, and lighting
the fire, along with how nice it is to only need fuel
2 or 3 times a year. When a boat is your only home for many years, these things really matter.
I never said that alcohol took up more space either. This was yet another mis quote. I said IT WAS POSSIBLE. And I qualified my statement... If you compared the required space for my 5 months of fuel, in the form of one 5 gal propane bottle, to your 5 months worth of alcohol, and assume the exact same amount of cooking
, I suspect that your fuel supply would need to be more than 5 gallons, and thus larger. I don't really know if it is true or not. Regardless, it is a moot point. It was a hunch.
To the person who was asking for information: The reason most cruisers of the world chose propane over alcohol, is to a degree all of the reasons I gave, but mostly it's just nicer to cook with, across the board. I can assure you that it's not a case of 5 million people "going along with the crowd", like Lemmings marching into the sea.
Sck5... You definitely should not consider Propane, because you consider the system you have to be better for your needs. Thats great! I'm glad it is working out.
NV51... You should DEFINITELY not use propane because you don't feel it is safe. I strongly recommend the Origo stove to you both. BTW, I wouldn't rule
out kerosene, or diesel
for you guys. Now THAT is an available fuel!
to you all... Mark