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Thread: Cabin Heater

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    New Gloucester, Maine
    Posts
    21

    Cabin Heater

    Anyone have experience with a vented cabin heater? Something like:

    https://shop.hamiltonmarine.com/prod...btu-27959.html

    or

    https://shop.hamiltonmarine.com/prod...QaAv3oEALw_wcB

    Any feedback is appreciated. Looking to make the boat useable year round here in Maine or at least New England.

    Thank you!

    -Ben

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    San Rafael, CA
    Posts
    3,542

    heater

    Ben,
    Two Cents. No experience, but I've been looking for years.

    Guess, the only place to mount it would be on the main
    bulkhead. Running the stovepipe out might be a problem
    with lines aft. Have to have easy removal of downdraft cap
    and temporary waterproof cap.

    Would choose the 66M, because the cabin space doesn't
    need thousands of BTU. Don't know if the 66M will take a
    tea kettle to heat water. Which is a fair heater too.

    Kerosene is OK if you use the 'odorless' stuff. I like the idea
    of those 16oz propane bombs, for a leakproof install. Both
    fuels create moisture. (Bottles are not recyclable but are
    refillable from a 20lb tank.) Spare kerosene storage and
    decanting is a problem. Kerosene creates soot.
    But it's also considered non-explosive.

    As for BTUs, I think: just change the cabin enough to be
    comfortable, rather than create a sauna. IF you are going
    to do a little cooking with a galley stove, that and a kettle
    of hot water would considerably cut back on chill. But also
    make steam and wet air! Propane can go Boom.

    !@#$%^! Hamilton cat never publishes any dimensions!!

    Any open flame in the accommodation will require a gas
    detector/alarm and positive air circulation pump in the bilge.
    Circulation is key to comfort, keeping mold to a minimum.

    Just thoughts...
    Last edited by ebb; 03-28-2018 at 09:35 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    New Gloucester, Maine
    Posts
    21

    Medical School on a Boat

    Hey Ebb,

    Thanks for the comments always well considered and thought provoking.

    Maybe to get others to chime in I should elaborate on my reasoning. I'm in my middle 30's and a father of 2 (Anna 1 month! and Lowell 2.5 years) and I've been a carpenter for most of my working years. About 3 years ago I decided to change course and see if I could gain acceptance to medical school after meeting and being inspired by, two physicians. I recently pulled it off and was accepted to Tufts University School of Medicine Maine Track. When I bought #414 from MBD (Mike) I didn't think I'd be accepted to Tufts or any of the other Boston schools and honestly I didn't know if I'd ever get in anywhere. I figured I needed a way to recreate with my new family that was a little less physical than my old pursuits (hiking and mountain biking mostly) and sailing would be a new thing to learn and has stuff to fiddle with while the family relaxes (which I need).

    It was never in the plan to move my family to Boston. I thought I'd spend a few nights a week in a rented room and come home on weekends and when I didn't have anything specific to do on campus then I saw the cost of rent in Boston and things looked a little tougher than expected. I began to think of all the possibilities and realized I could get a winter slip at a marina in Boston for far less than a room. All I really need is a warm place to sleep. The school has all the rest- showers, places to relax and study (mostly study) and coffee.

    So here I am - looking for advice on heating a boat in Boston through the fall, winter and early spring. Also any other "live aboard" tips others may have. I know it is a very small boat to live on but do keep in mind that it's more or less a bedroom that will be used 3ish nights a week.

    So far from my research it seems that diesel bulkhead mounted heater is perhaps the best option. Propane adds another fuel that I don't have much use for and electric will kill me at 0.27 cents per kWh although the initial investment would be very low.

    I've talked with and visited the Constitution Marina and they are good with any heat source except wood. They also have full bathrooms available at the docks.

    Any suggestions? Has anyone done something similar?

    Thanks everyone!

    -Ben

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    San Rafael, CA
    Posts
    3,542

    Exclamation Doctor Ben

    Your story is absolutely amazing. Congrats. Good luck.

    Last bit, then I'll shut up.

    Too bad about not burning wood. Maybe it's the smoke they don't like.
    But dry heat, imco is your best bet, if your Ariel is not yet insulated.
    Condensation. I would burn charcoal briquettes, ask them.
    Ask anybody else crazy enough to camp out in a marina during winter!

    Electric heat, juice from the marina, is easier and cheaper. And might
    give you more time to get something comfortable inside. Don't think
    diesel burns without smoke. And smell.

    The electric age is here. LittleGull will have no petro chemicals aboard
    when I finally get done.
    .
    .
    .
    Last edited by ebb; 03-29-2018 at 01:47 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Scarborough, Maine
    Posts
    1,432
    Ben that is great news on medical school and a brilliant idea for cheap Boston rent to boot. As Ebb said, I think insulating the hull is the first order of business, and now is the time while you have things all pulled apart.

    I know there are some crazy folks around here that winter over in Portland. They shrink wrap their boats, which seems like a good idea since you won't be doing any sailing AND you won't have to shovel snow off the decks. Plus, then you could install some sort of temporary solution over the forward hatch which would leave more badly needed room below. (?)

    Maybe you can find some winter live aboards down at Spring Point Marina in South Portland - there are usually a few. Talk with them and get some firsthand ideas from them - or even take a trip to Boston.

    Also, maybe check out Kurt's forum SailFar.net, you'll probably find some winter live aboards there. Good luck! Exciting times!
    Mike
    Totoro (Sea Sprite 23 #626)

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