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dinosdad 09-28-2013 09:14 AM

What type of heat for weekend use in New England
Looking for suggestions for heating our sailboat on the weekends in the spring and fall seasons on the Connecticut coast , we mostly day sail the boat ,c&c 30 mk1, and hang out on the mooring. We don't stay over on the boat before June and usually not after Labor Day. We would like to get more weekends on it but we hate the cold(ok I hate even cool weather). Extra blankets and warmer clothes doesn't get it done for me. Other than the obvious solution of moving south, (if it weren't for the wife's job , we'd be outta here.) being that it only needs to be used for three or four hours a night on weekends I'm considering either the Dickinson solid fuel heater, the Dickinson propane heater( most costly due to the need for a complete propane installation), or the Dickinson diesel heater which seems overkill. The boat will never be a full time livaboard so a espar, webasto, eberspacher etal,are off the table..

Rhapsody-NS27 09-28-2013 09:29 AM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
Looks like you already identified the options that are available to you. As I understand it, the solid fuel heaters won't last too long, maybe for those few hours at a time you mentioned. You'll have to keep reloading it along the way. The propane heater, while more costly up front, might work out that you can turn on and leave it on for a while. If you were to overnight on the boat, the propane would be good so you can leave it on. The solid fuel heater, you would likely have to get up in the middle of the night to resupply it with wood.

someone may correct me, but I believe those options you mentioned would provide a nice dry heat that will keep moisture in the cabin low while you're on board.

RobGallagher 09-28-2013 09:53 AM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
Just sent you a PM. I have a Dickinson solid fuel heater for sale, and it seems we are neighbors.

Delezynski 09-28-2013 10:29 AM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England

We have solid fuel fireplace/heater aboard. When living aboard I came up with two ideas that worked well for us. One was to use brown paper sandwich bags that I would load with the solid fuel. I knew that each bag gave about 3~4 hours of heat. So, during the night I could just drop one in and not even get my hands dirty.

Recently I have switched to using an oil lamp inside the fireplace. When filled, it lasts ALL night, and then some! We just gave it a LONG workout cruising the San Francisco Bay. You can see it in action on our Youtube page.

*** NOTE *** This video is in 3D, but you can turn that off by going to the bottom and clicking on the gear, then selecting 3D off.


Alex W 09-28-2013 11:14 AM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
I have a Webasto in my Pearson, it was original equipment. I'm not sure what makes it only appropriate for liveaboards, it works great for us.

I like that it doesn't take up any noticeable cabin space and is pretty quiet and efficient.

I need to re-wrap my exhaust lines though, the original wrap appears to not work very well anymore. Until then I always have to make sure that there is nothing near them in the cockpit locker.

RocketScience 09-28-2013 11:32 AM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
Before I installed a Webasto hydronic system on our boat two years ago, we used a portable alcohol fueled heater similar to this one:


It was a great option for the occasional over nighter, just not conducive to extended cruising.

dinosdad 09-28-2013 06:42 PM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
Delezynski, I saw that video when I was searching youtube for stove videos, awesome idea, and great video!
Alex, the webasto type heaters while probably the ultimate solution also carries the biggest price tag, and I'm thinking 4, maybe five years to the next boat, and while boats are bad investments , I try and make upgrades that will keep the financial blood letting to a minimum, if this was my last boat, I would lean to a webasto style heater without a doubt.

rikhall 09-28-2013 09:12 PM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
This is what I installed in our Irwin Citation 34, and we love it!

And HERE is the story of the install with more pictures.

( I do not work for the company and I am sure there are many good options. Just showing and telling you what we did. We live in Eastern Canada.)


HUGOSALT 09-28-2013 10:24 PM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
COLEMAN Sportcat Indoor/Outdoor PerfecTemp Catalytic Propane Camping Camp Heater

I use above heater for cool weather spring and fall very much as
you describe on my 30 fter on Long Island Sound. Rated for indoors however I use for a few hours before turning in for the night and then shut off, then turn on again in a.m. to take chill out of cabin. Also leave a port open.
No install, remove from boat in summer, about $50.
Four legs that fold out for stable base.
Use same propane tanks for bbq.

H and E 09-29-2013 07:18 AM

Re: What type of heat for weekend use in New England
Mr. Heater Portable Buddy Propane Heater — 9000 BTU, Model# MH9BX This is what I use. I only need to run it for a few minutes to take the chill out of the boat. I store the propane bottles out side of the cabin and install or remove them outside to make sure the gas does not get in the bilge.

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