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  #1  
Old 12-04-2007
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cabin heater ideas

I'm thinking of installing a cabin heater as one of my winter projects and would love to tap into the vast expanse of knowledge of this forum to gather a game plan. Here's the scenario:

I cruise in Maine with my sights on Canadian Maritimes for next summer so I want something to combat the wet, soggy, foggy, drippy, rainy, chilly even in July weather we get up here.

My boat is small (1968 Bristol 27) and simple and space is a premium. I'm going to fit it into my existing bookshelf (with appropriate modifications) so bulkhead or floor mount will probably both work.

I don't want electric or propane or solid fuel.

I'll be installing this myself.

I don't mind spending money but I want bang for my buck.

Any ideas, specific products, links, experiece, precautions, etc. will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 12-04-2007
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That leaves only a few fuels left. I assume your engine runs on diesel, so a diesel heater should work for you. I have a preference for those that heat water and use radiators, as they also heat the tap water. Names like Webasto and Ebersp/bacher come to mind.

http://www.eberspacher.com/waterheat...n=waterheating

Last edited by Idiens; 12-04-2007 at 12:34 PM. Reason: added link
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Old 12-04-2007
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if you are not interested in propane how about diesel? they work quite well and as long as they are vented well, they do not add much moisture in the air. assuming your boat runs on diesel this would eliminate having multiple fuels on board as well.
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Actually my engine is a 6hp outboard which lives in the lazarette so any fuel will be its own system.
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There's usually a petrol/gas version of the diesel heaters, if you want to stick to one fuel. But diesel is safer than petrol/gas to store.
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The propane heaters are quite nice, and if you've already got propane aboard for the stove, then it might make a lot of sense.
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Old 12-04-2007
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propane really is the best and least expensive option. we have a dickenson newport and that heats us out of the boat in below zero weather. we hang a 20lb bottle of the stern pulpit and it lasts a long time. connections are easy, parts available everywhere, it's safe, you never smell it, and burns clean.

the only way i would use a liquid fuel would be as a diesel stove, but they tend to be big, ugly and smell bad.
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I am a little nervous about propane leaks and needing bilge sensors for detecting the leaks, etc. That's my only hesitation against propane. I like the inexpensive and efficient part.
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A proper installation is really quite safe. The propane detector is really a safety measure, like a CO detector would be.
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If your initial equipment purchase and installation budget is very low, than I can assure you from experience - forget Espar (Eberspacher in German).

But, if diesel is your choice and you want the most energy efficient and comfortable heating system for onboard use, regardless of up-front cost, than look very closely at Espar.
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