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Old 11-18-2012, 02:51 PM   #1
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Question Diesel Heaters / Stoves - Requesting Assistance

As we plan and research our next trawler style boat our goal is to build a boat that is less complex than our Nordhavn's. Any opportunity to do without an added system is a plus for us. One area I'm currently focused on is fuel and how to make the fuel system operate as many systems as possible. With our Norhavn's thier 920 gallons of diesel fuel only supported the main and wing engines. On the next boat I want to use the fuel to heat the boat and be the fuel source to the stove/oven. This approach will allow us to delete the reverse cycle heat / air-condition systems (Nordhavn had 3 systems) and the LPG Gas system for the stove (No more propane tanks to fill). We are not interested in air-conditioning on the next boat.

Does anyone have experience with the Wallas brand diesel stoves or other diesel heating systems which they can share? Our desire would be one system that can provide heat for the entire boat (salon and OSR) and fuel to the stove / oven. The Wallas system I researched provides a combined system but it would not heat the entire boat, just part of the salon Thank you.
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Old 11-18-2012, 03:12 PM   #2
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Just installed a wallas DT40 furnace.

It is supplemental heat for my 40 footer as it would struggle by itself when the temps dip to the 30's. Though a smaller one could be added for the forward spaces.

I think they are great...easy to install and has worked flawlessly for a month now straight out of the box.

Bad news...they are not for live aboard use (24/7). They could do it for about 6 months... then may need servicing but any worn-out parts would not fall under warranty.

Call Scan Marine in Washington, the 2 brothers are great to give you info...very nice.
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Old 11-18-2012, 03:24 PM   #3
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To long for for adequate reply on note pad.

For the fuel supply what is needed is draw and return manifold that a number if items can be comnected to. Do a surch under fuel polishing. As for heat addition information is required, area, low tempt, suplemental/24/7, size and style of boat?
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Old 11-18-2012, 05:10 PM   #4
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We use diesel fuel to heat our boat. A couple of the bigger names are Hurricane, Espar, and Webasto. We have a Hurricane which is a hydronic system. I think a hydronic system is the way to go as you only need to run 3/4" heater hose instead of 3" or larger air duct. We have heat going to our two staterooms, master stateroom, pilot house, and salon. I just finished installing a SIG Marine free standing diesel heater in the salon that requires no electrical power at all. The fuel is fed by gravity. This will be great while anchored out.

Check out the web sites for SIG Marine and Dickinson Marine. Dickinson has marine diesel stoves with ovens
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Old 11-18-2012, 09:38 PM   #5
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A hydronic system is best
Kabola is the standard for a reliable furnace
Most other brands will just nickle and dime you to death with maintenance if used regularly

Oil stoves are great for a larger yacht
The standard setup is to use a high mounted header tank to allow a gravity drop to the carburetor
This elimanates the unreliable impulse pump from the system
The tank is filled using return fuel from a main engine or genset
A return is hooked up near the top of this header tank and returns to the main fuel tanks ,so that the tank does not overfill
Usualy a second way of filling is provided
This could be a hand pump ,or an electric to allow filling the header without running the engines
Be aware of some issues with using an oil stove
In small boats >50 feet you may find the main galley uncomfortably hot when cooking meals in warmer weather
And it takes much longer to cook than either electric,or gas

Each person is different but when I think of keeping systems simple and reliable I would sugest using all electric appliances
Stove (oven and cooktop)
Refrigerator
Heaters (King brand forced air, passive registers)
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Old 11-18-2012, 10:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N4061 View Post
As we plan and research our next trawler style boat our goal is to build a boat that is less complex than our Nordhavn's. Any opportunity to do without an added system is a plus for us. One area I'm currently focused on is fuel and how to make the fuel system operate as many systems as possible. With our Norhavn's thier 920 gallons of diesel fuel only supported the main and wing engines. On the next boat I want to use the fuel to heat the boat and be the fuel source to the stove/oven. This approach will allow us to delete the reverse cycle heat / air-condition systems (Nordhavn had 3 systems) and the LPG Gas system for the stove (No more propane tanks to fill). We are not interested in air-conditioning on the next boat.

Does anyone have experience with the Wallas brand diesel stoves or other diesel heating systems which they can share? Our desire would be one system that can provide heat for the entire boat (salon and OSR) and fuel to the stove / oven. The Wallas system I researched provides a combined system but it would not heat the entire boat, just part of the salon Thank you.
We had a combination Wallas unit and it worked well, but its heat output would probably be too little for most vessels. We looked at the Wallas oven in order to be able to rely exclusively on diesel, but the size was smaller than I could convince the Admiral to accept.

The compromise was a Kabola for hydronic heating, coupled with diesel powering the genset charging a large house bank allowing the use of microwave, electric frying pan, etc., with an electric stove top and oven at 240 v for more serious cooking. The result is no propane, just diesel and electricity produced from diesel. A completely diesel vessel is not practical, but you can get close.

You can get old style oven and stove tops that are diesel powered, but they heat of so much they are hard to use most places where the sun actually shines. Dickinson makes a bunch of them: DickinsonMarine.com - Marine Stoves
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:06 AM   #7
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We have three Wallas furnaces on our 47' pilothouse boat.

One for the salon, one for the cabins, and a smaller one for the pilothouse.

I'm a big fan of the wallas units. They are quiet, dependable, and provide both heat and ventilation.

The only issue you will have will be with changing your thinking from a large central heating system to distributed heat.

People have no problem having tow or three air conditioning units, but those same people will shy away from three small furnaces.

I've had hydronic heat. Its just fine, except that it doesn't solve the ventilation problem most boats have. Forced air solves those problems, by providing fresh make up air from outside the boat.

In the summer I just turn on the Wallas units in vent mode and keep the boat nice and fresh.
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:40 AM   #8
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I am familiar with (used to sell) the Dickinson , their Pacific range should be large enough , unless you have a huge crew.

Dickinsons can be used in the summer as a galley range , but to speed up the start the tiny fan is a big help for the first 10 min..

It would be quite easy to set the boat up with individual heaters , and zero power required..

For all weather functioning only the H smoke head will do the job.

While I am 100% in favor of the concept for a boat that does not require a power hose or nioisemaker to stay warm another big question will be refrigeration.

While we on our 90/90 have a 6 inch insulated top opening box with 10,000BTU of eutetic plate installed , it still requires 2 hours of engine time every 3rd or 4th day.

Our lobster style boat uses 1 20lb bottle of propane every 3 weeks 50 year old unit.

New propane reefers will go a month+ per bottle , carrying 3 or 4 bottles makes months of independance quite easy .

A larger boat will have loads of room in the galley.

Our solution on the 50 is 2 ranges.

A gimboled 3 burner propane (gas use too minor to monitor) and a bolted down with fiddles Dickinson range , for the cooler times.

The out of use range serves double duty as counter space.

Gas fridges work well, as the slight constant motion makes them slightly more efficient.

The usual hassle is installing one where it can drain over board should there be a multiple malfunction.

Easy enough on a new build.

SIMPLE should be every cruisers goal, as someone pointed out ,
if you don't have it , you don't have to maintain it!
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:03 PM   #9
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Another long post.


When we bought the Eagle being a California boat it had great air condition but 0 heat. Not good in the PNW. The first year I installed Pic a watt heaters and a CAT catalytic vented, propane heater in the salon, which barely kept the boat warm. So at all the boat/trawler shows and any boat over 60 ft I could crawl around and took notes of the heating systems. At the time Webasto diesel boiler was in 90+% of the boats, and a few hurricanes. Also the Websto dealer, Sure Marine, was in Seattle, and parts service are readily available. The boiler hot was the easiest to install as only 1 ” holes had to be in stalled, and there was a concern if air the air would cool down to much before reaching the master bed room.

Anyway, sat the time we where moored right in front of an installer which we knew and was willing to work with me. So I did about 80% of the install with the guidance and help. What ever you brand make sure you use an installer as they will help lay out, and size the system, plus they get a discount so they can sell to you at the same price as buying direct from the Dealer. I saved an estimated 10 grand doing the install my self and it only took a week end and a couple of days.

However, I did have to have our plant maintenance person drill the 3” holes for the exchange blowers as the drill torque about broke my arm, and when I broke a nail that was just to much. Maybe wrecking a manicure but breaking a nail! So while he was there help to run the longer length of hose as it really is a two person job. When we do big project my wife, goes to visit friends/relatives. “Give me a call when you have my boat clean and back in order!” “Yes, Dear!”

Being the Webasto and the hot water heat is in the engine room it keeps the engine room about 70 degrees and dry, and with the hose exchange run through the bilge, and in most closets and draw space the boat is total warm and dry with hardly any moisture. So dry we have cobwebs and dust balls. Anyway the best investment we have make in the boat about 15 grand! But my wife is worth it!

Oh!, The Webasto runs off the same manifoilds as the main 671 and the gen set. It also draws more than it uses so it polishes/cleans the fuel, which is nice.

As for cooking we do not cook, have not lit the stove for years and never the oven. We micro wave and grill, but mostly eat by VISA. In the summer we use the BBQ, and in the winter a George Forman with a timer on it so the grand children can make their own meals with out burning down the boat. "What do we look like you servent?" We also eat/use paper plates but they are China Plates with matching design. No dishes.



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Old 11-22-2012, 06:34 AM   #10
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A warm toasty boat is a delight and hydronic is a simple (but not easy) way to spread the heat.

One hassle with hydronic is the water temperature usually needs to be 180F or above for std base board heaters to function. Or toe kick heaters need to be installed , although the require power to operate.

jaga-usa.com imports baseboard units that will operate with much lower circ water temperatures.

A thermo-syphon system can function in a boat .
The combination of a furnace that requires Zero electric and a circ system that works on gravity is the Gold Standard.

Not easy to do, no elbows , Air cond sweeps instead , and some trial and error to get the temps right , but being able to heat till the fuel tank runs dry is a positive , even for a dock queen.!
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:08 PM   #11
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Had Webasto head rebuilt. Its to quiet. No whining noise. Now the heat exchanger fans are to loud. I bought the Webasto for the loud whine, so I could hear when it was firing. If it was not going to get cold, I would take it back and have the whine put back.
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:20 PM   #12
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Phill,

Sounds like you're whining.

No offense of course.
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Old 12-07-2012, 11:57 AM   #13
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Phill,

Sounds like you're whining.

No offense of course.

Non taken!

Its going to take a long time for me to get use to as I sort of listen for the Webasto to firers and shut down. Especially the shut down as we had the high water temp sensor go out, so it would boil the water and make a kinds of gastric noise. Then it would trip the next sensor, shut down, cool down and start back up again.

The Webasto has three heat sensor, high water temp were its supposed to normally shut down, extra high water temp, something is wrong, and melting temp. Anyway I like to be able to hear the Webasto so I know if its operating correctly. When it gets warmer I am going to take it back to have the whine put back in. I paid good money for that whine!
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Old 12-07-2012, 04:27 PM   #14
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One hassle with hydronic is the water temperature usually needs to be 180F or above for std base board heaters to function.
This is probably not feasable in a boat, with all the hatches and clearance issues. In-floor hydronic requires much lower water temps (90F-100F), as the radiant surface area is so much larger.

More sophisticated hydronic systems alter the heating zone water temp based on the outdoor temp, and the calculated insulation efficiency of the dwelling (heat loss rate).
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Old 12-07-2012, 04:55 PM   #15
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I would say keep things as simple as possible the less things to break the better.

A Dickenson diesel stove with the coil for Hydronic use and like straycat says plumb the return from the engine to the stove tank. You can run a red dot heater installed anywhere you like. and as many as you like. It is just a fan motor.
There is a learning curve to cooking on a diesel stove but once you get it down it really works great.
I live in Alaska and never have days above 75 deg or so. I run it all winter long down to-30 deg.
My Dickenson stays on all the time I am on the boat. Keeps the whole boat warm.
Once lit you never have to mess with it till you turn it off. 24/7/365
With the Hydronic you will need a small circulating pump. Less chance of a failure with that than an Espar Wallas or Wabesto All require maintenance
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