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  #11  
Old 10-08-2009
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We have two of these lamps. They did not come with the gimbals, I cobbled those up from odds and ends. We burn plain old unscented mineral spirits from the hardware store. The have wide 1" wicks and are duplex burners, so they produce twice as much light and twice as much heat when they are both lit. They can burn one at a time as well.



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Last edited by sarafinadh; 10-08-2009 at 05:38 PM.
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StPete, if I were in your situation I would just go to Walmart and get a cheap quilt, bundle up, and cut the fingers out of some cotton gloves to type.

Edit - and run away back to the warmth of Florida as soon as you get the chance.
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Last edited by wind_magic; 10-08-2009 at 05:37 PM. Reason: edit
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Old 10-08-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stpetersburgsailor View Post
Sarah, great tips what model oil lamps do u use?

-Jonathan

Has to be said that an Australian winter (Sydney) is nowhere near as cold as some of you lot experience but we've found the oil lamp heater to be the go.

We did have a hard time finding one of decent quality. First couple we bought were absolute rubbish. The high pressure jobs are no good cos they make too much noise and give off more light than heat.

That splendid chap StillRaining actually sent me one he bought in Seattle. It is good quality and for our needs gives of more than enough heat. Bonus is that in warmer months we put Citronella oil into it and hang it in the cockpit as a mosquito deterrent.

Ask Still, he'll tell where he got the one he sent us.

In colder climes I'd like one of those Dickenson Diesel things.
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Does anyone use an inverter (1000 watt) to run a small, say 150-200 watt, electric space heater? This would be at sea or at anchor, away from a shore cord.
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Webasto and Espar both make nice diesel furnaces for boats.
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Originally Posted by bogdog View Post
Does anyone use an inverter (1000 watt) to run a small, say 150-200 watt, electric space heater? This would be at sea or at anchor, away from a shore cord.
I would not heat air on a boat with electricity, but I do have heated socks that are powered by 12vdc electricity. I highly recommend them. If your feet are warm then the whole you is warm.

<-- The smile of genuine warm footed contentment.

One more thought for StPete, if you really aren't planning to stay in the cold for long, how about some candles ? Assuming you are all bundled up in blankets and you just want a little bit of warmth, some candles can do it. In the winter even with space heating I often keep a candle near my keyboard just so I can hold my hand over it from time to time and warm my hand up. Can't get any more simple than candles. Edit - and you can get a blanket, tarp, or something and enclose yourself and the small heat source inside of a smaller area too, like around your computer, and that will help keep you warm.
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Last edited by wind_magic; 10-08-2009 at 06:06 PM. Reason: edit
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Originally Posted by sarafinadh View Post
We have two of these lamps.
I really like this as a solution, but I have never used oil lamps before. What are they like ? Do you have a source for them ? I have seen some lamps at various stores before, and I know I can get one at an antique store if I look around, but I really don't know much about how they are used or what to expect from them.
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They are pretty simple. There is a reservoir in the bottom that you fill with fuel. Mineral spirits, or lamp oil seem to burn the cleanest. Lamp oil is pricey refined mineral spirits. There is a fair amount of confusion info about fuels, but if you go to the hardware store and buy unscented mineral spirits, in the paint department, you can't go far wrong.

The lamps have cotton wicks that hang down into the oil and *wick* it up to the tip were you light it. The wick burns down at a slow rate, much like a candle. The knob is for adjusting the wick height. There is a little bit of technique involved in lighting a lamp. Remove the glass chimney. You fill it (if needed) and then turn the wick up just high enough to light it with a match. It will flare initially a bit and I crank it down pretty far into the lamp until the flame tames. Then I put the glass chimney back on and turn it up to the desired level of burn. This minimuzes the soot accumulation in the chimney.

We refill the lamp maybe once a week or a bit more often if we are burning it extra. They get used most nights for a few hours at least.

They need a *cap* or *bell* to divert the heat rising up the chimney. Other wise the ceiling, if it's at all near will get pretty warm. Not catch fire warm, but bubble and ruin the finish warm.

Ours have them incorporated into the hanger. There are many designs of oil lamps, many especially for boats that have the bells and gimbals all ready.
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Sarafinadh, could you provide more info on the Vortex personal heater
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Originally Posted by sarafinadh View Post
They are pretty simple. There is a reservoir in the bottom that you fill with fuel. Mineral spirits, or lamp oil seem to burn the cleanest. Lamp oil is pricey refined mineral spirits. There is a fair amount of confusion info about fuels, but if you go to the hardware store and buy unscented mineral spirits, in the paint department, you can't go far wrong.

The lamps have cotton wicks that hang down into the oil and *wick* it up to the tip were you light it. The wick burns down at a slow rate, much like a candle. The knob is for adjusting the wick height. There is a little bit of technique involved in lighting a lamp. Remove the glass chimney. You fill it (if needed) and then turn the wick up just high enough to light it with a match. It will flare initially a bit and I crank it down pretty far into the lamp until the flame tames. Then I put the glass chimney back on and turn it up to the desired level of burn. This minimuzes the soot accumulation in the chimney.

We refill the lamp maybe once a week or a bit more often if we are burning it extra. They get used most nights for a few hours at least.

They need a *cap* or *bell* to divert the heat rising up the chimney. Other wise the ceiling, if it's at all near will get pretty warm. Not catch fire warm, but bubble and ruin the finish warm.

Ours have them incorporated into the hanger. There are many designs of oil lamps, many especially for boats that have the bells and gimbals all ready.
Great information Sarafinadh, thanks for sharing!

Inspired by this post and something I read about a mason jar lamp I just went and got a mason jar, jabbed a hole in the lid with a screw driver, then cut a piece of cloth and put it through the hole. I had some lamp oil here for an emergency lantern, so I just put an inch of that into the mason jar, swished it all around so that the cloth would get oil all over it, then pulled some of the oiled cloth through the hole in the mason jar. Lit it with a lighter, and it works!

You would think the jar would get hot but it really doesn't, even the ring holding the metal jar lid didn't get hot (I did not screw it down in case pressure builds up inside the jar).

The only thing that doesn't work is that the fat flame does smoke a lot, I don't know if that is because of the fuel I used or if it is because of the wick I made, or too much wick, or what the trouble is. Maybe oil lamps just smoke a lot, I don't know.

Fun stuff.

I would not leave my mason jar lamp unattended, but it would probably serve to heat up a small area while I was sitting next to it, if it just didn't smoke so much!

Edit, it looks something like this except without the fancy lids, and the wick on mine is a lot bigger so the flame is a few inches tall.

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Last edited by wind_magic; 10-08-2009 at 06:47 PM.
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