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Old 07-30-2021, 08:50 PM   #1
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Want to add heater for this winter

Have it narrowed down to either Dickinson diesel or cubic mini grizzly wood stove,am leaning towards wood stove but honestly ready just to flip a coin,any input I would greatly appreciate
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Old 07-30-2021, 09:37 PM   #2
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Also consider Hurricane brand of diesel heater. Wood is good for a day or two of romantic heat, but a single source heat unit will not heat your boat, just one area.

The more days you think you will use the heater, the better the diesel option is.
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Old 07-30-2021, 10:04 PM   #3
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Wood smoke could get you in trouble in some neighborhoods.
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Old 07-30-2021, 10:22 PM   #4
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I put a Hurricane system in for Eastern Canadian winters. Most folk I've met use a combination of electric and diesel heaters, but I didn't want to be overly reliant on shore power.
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Old 07-31-2021, 04:06 AM   #5
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I had a Dickenson 17k btu bulkhead diesel heater on my Willard 36. I had trouble with back puffing, though this was in breezy SF Bay. Given your Hobsons Choice (the other being wood), I'd go Dickenson but really my answer is a cheap Chinese Espar knock-off. Or move to Florida

Good luck.

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Old 07-31-2021, 09:23 AM   #6
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What are your requirements? What are the ambient temperatures expected in the winter? Wood stoves require ash disposal, wood storage and can create smoke and spark issues besides the possible fire issues on the boat. Having wood as a fuel source has far more issues then I would want to have. Diesel fuel can have issues in severe cold weather but is far safer and less messy compared to wood. Propane has issues as well but a well planned system can be safe and is clean operating. Many options here too. To provide a solid recommendation will require more knowledge then you have provided.
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Old 07-31-2021, 09:43 AM   #7
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So, a few boats back we had a wood stove in our boat. It was a really well designed custom build...it even had a titanium stove stack that was surplus from the Apollo space program. Wood stoves on a boat have very small capacity and as such have to be fed almost constantly, ours had both flue and draft control yet still needed to be replenished every 20 minutes or so. We used it a couple times a year at best and we burnt Madrona chunks, probably the best firewood possible for btu's, burn time and ash production. When it was burning it was fantastic.. great ambiance and feel. Would I do a wood stove even if cost was not a factor.. nope. It was too much hassle .. made a mess of the decks and just wasn't worth it. Go diesel.
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Old 07-31-2021, 10:53 AM   #8
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If you want to heat your boat with any kind of regularity do what others do...

Buy a diesel furnace and be done with it.

Pick your poison, forced air or hydronic. Both have advantages and disadvantages.

I heat full time in Alaska, and know several liveaboards both here and throughout the PACNW. Every one of us relies on diesel heat.

For long term reliability pick a brand of furnaces with a really good parts and tech support source. Diesel fuel is not the easiest thing for a furnace (compared to home gas) because it produces a bit of soot, so parts and service are very important.
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Old 07-31-2021, 01:17 PM   #9
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https://cubicminiwoodstoves.com/coll...rizzly-cb-1210

Take a look at this woodstove I can easily install this,and live close to a tractor supply which sells coal,pressed logs,and work at a cnc machine shop where oak pallets come on a daily basis which I could also cut up,and as far as worrying about neighbors there will be none this winter I'm at a 250 boat marina and only about 15 of them are full time liveaboards and in my opinion nothing beats the ambience of a glowing woodstove,I have 50 amp shore power with 2 1500w ceramic heaters and webasto Chinese 8kw knockoff that did the trick last winter and the YouTube videos I e watched about the cubic mini grizzly were nothing but 5 star ratings and have a plan to shrink wrap just the cockpit this winter with a zipper door for access and would be a perfect spot for a couple hundred pounds of wood
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Old 07-31-2021, 01:35 PM   #10
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Somebody recently posted about the "espar knockoffs" you can get on Amazon for a couple hundred. Reviews after install all seem to be good. The one consistent complaint was the control panel was a bit lacking. Also, some of the installation parts seemed to be on the cheaper side and they suggested buying higher quality parts.

Most of them also had the same reasoning, "the unit cost a couple hundred bucks vs. a min $2,000. Even if it had to be replaced every 2 years, it would still take 10 years just to hit the same cost as the lowest 2kw unit."...
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Old 07-31-2021, 08:00 PM   #11
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I installed a Wallas 30GB last winter. Diesel fired, forced air. Happy with it so far. Bought from Scan Marine. Tech guys were very helpful. Here’s a link

https://scanmarineusa.com/products/h...ed-air-heater/
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Old 07-31-2021, 09:05 PM   #12
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Something you might want to consider is your insurance company´s thoughts on you installing a wood stove on a boat. Never heard of a marine approved wood burning stove and if that is required by your insurance company. Hate to see you fighting over a claim with them.
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Old 07-31-2021, 09:34 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Something you might want to consider is your insurance company´s thoughts on you installing a wood stove on a boat. Never heard of a marine approved wood burning stove and if that is required by your insurance company. Hate to see you fighting over a claim with them.

I have never heard of an insurance policy requiring marine approved appliances. Those washer and dryers found on many boats are not marine approved, neither are InstaPots or such.



Dickinson Marine who has been in business since 1932 has no mention of being marine approved on their site.


Here is a nice solid fuel heater:


Newport Solid Fuel Heater | Dickinson Marine
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Old 07-31-2021, 09:38 PM   #14
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I take that back... Dickinson does have the disclaimer: *ABYC approved for MARINE use only* for their fireplace heater. So if you put one in your Montana cabin or VW van, your in the poop.
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Old 08-01-2021, 12:59 AM   #15
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On my boat they installed esper but do to some warranty issues they have stopped using them and are using wabasco as there standard equipment.
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Old 08-01-2021, 05:51 AM   #16
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Back drafting on a Dickinson usually is caused by the wrong smoke head.

The H style worked well for over a decade in a crowded marina where the wind changes direction almost constantly.

The wall or floor mounted units work fine , but consider a range , for all winter operation , they bake and cook fine.

The easier it is to stay cozy , the longer your boating season is.
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Old 08-01-2021, 07:10 AM   #17
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Quote:
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Back drafting on a Dickinson usually is caused by the wrong smoke head.

The H style worked well for over a decade in a crowded marina where the wind changes direction almost constantly.

The wall or floor mounted units work fine , but consider a range , for all winter operation , they bake and cook fine.

The easier it is to stay cozy , the longer your boating season is.
Over the course of 3-years as liveaboard on my Willard 36 (sistership to OP, though I believe he's in the Boston area vs my SFBay),I tried the H-style and Charlie Noble. Also added a length of pipe for a total of around 8-feet. I tried cracking a window. Finally added the small fan to force inlet air. The only thing I didn't do was to run a second stove pipe from beneath the combustion chamber (two pipes exiting deck level, an arrangement that is recommended to balance pressure). I would still get sn occasional back puff, which really sucked.

I know many have used the Dickenson style bulkhead heater successfully, but I was not one of them. I give it a C+

Peter.
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Old 08-01-2021, 10:59 AM   #18
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I give an A+ to my Wallace furnaces. I have one on the boat right now that has almost 30,000 hours on it.

My opinion is that you get what you pay for in this world. There are often reasons why a cheap knock off is so cheap, reasons you do not realize untill you start dealing with reliability issues as the hours start to rack up.

I literally turn my Wallace furnaces on at the start of winter in late October and they stay on until mid April. I have done this for more than a decade.
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Old 08-01-2021, 11:35 AM   #19
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I had a Dickenson diesel stove for years. Loved it in the PNW except the still nights with a light dew on the deck. A tiny dot of soot would turn into a long black streak that needed soap and hot water to clean. Fortunately, it's mostly rainy, windy nights here.
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Old 08-01-2021, 03:15 PM   #20
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If you're in a cold climate, diesel is the best fuel. It's already on board. You need to think about venting. With your boat closed up all the moisture from your breath, cooking, and showers stays in the boat. And if you're cooking with propane, more moisture in the air is a byproduct. You end up with damp clothes and bedding. A stove using internal air is constantly helping you change the air and getting the moisture out.

I run a pellet stove all winter that also heats my hydronic system. It's a lot easier to move a bag of pellets than 6 arm loads of wood. That was the difference for me. I went to pellets the last time we had $4 diesel. My interior humidity hovers around 40% and my clothes are dry.
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