Propane Stove Install Help/Suggestions

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Newtrawlerowner

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2019
Messages
337
Location
USA
Vessel Name
PartnerShip II
Vessel Make
2003 Mainship 400
I'm removing the electric stove on my 2003 MS400 and looking for some advice.
I visited a MS400 owner that has propane and did see where the propane locker was mounted. I will mount my double tank locker in the same location on the starboard side outside of the upper helm. This is adjacent to the pipe/wire chase that goes from the engine room to the fly-bridge.
My 1st question of those that have a propane stove is does the propane feed line exit behind the sink? If not how does it get to the stove?

Where did the MS mount the propane sensor? I've seen some mounted at the kick plate below the stove.
Thank you in advance for any help you can offer.
 
I am not familiar with your boat, but look up the ABYC recommendations for a propane install and make sure you’re in compliance.
 
I am not familiar with your boat, but look up the ABYC recommendations for a propane install and make sure you’re in compliance.
Thanks. I have every intention of doing this in compliance.
 
Question: What drove your decision to go propane? We have a propane range on our Willard 36 and while it works well, we will probably replace with induction and a combo microwave/convection at some point. Gas just generates too much ambient heat and it's hard to imagine using it in a more tropical climate such as Florida. We have a decent sized LFP battery bank and solar to support it.

Just curious. That said, if we did a lot of baking, would be a more difficult decision as there are not many practical options besides propane in an oven.

Good luck with your conversion -

Peter
 
Check with your insurance carrier......... they may require that the gas fitting be done by a certified installer, and that the whole installation is signed off by a "professional" to insure coverage???
Don't know for sure, but if it were me, I would want to know for sure that I had not inadvertently created a "loop hole" to deny a claim. :)
 
Where did MS put the propane sensor? If it didn't come with propane installed I really doubt there's a sensor at all. You'll have to do that yourself. I used a two channel alarm/control that alarms and shuts off the flow if it detects a leak. I put one sensor directly under the stove and the other down in the engine room. Note that most any hydrocarbon can trip the alarm, I once had one go off from a leaking paint can. That's not a bad thing.
A lot of people with trawler style boats put the propane tank up on the fly bridge, but in most cases this will not be compliant. Especially anywhere near the conduit going down into the engine room. The tank must be placed where any leak can't find it's way into the boat. I put mine out on the swim platform. (I actually have done this on my last three boats.) It was a bit harder routing the hose that way, but it was the only location that would be safe. You'll see that when you look up the ABYC standard.
 
Propane sensors have a short life span. InStall it in such a way as it is easily replaceable and carry a spare sensor.
 
Question: What drove your decision to go propane? We have a propane range on our Willard 36 and while it works well, we will probably replace with induction and a combo microwave/convection at some point. Gas just generates too much ambient heat and it's hard to imagine using it in a more tropical climate such as Florida. We have a decent sized LFP battery bank and solar to support it.

Just curious. That said, if we did a lot of baking, would be a more difficult decision as there are not many practical options besides propane in an oven.

Good luck with your conversion -

Peter
There are a lot of advantages of propane over elec cooking in 3rd world countries. Spent over 2 years in central America and propane was easy to get. We actually had a propane refer and after 2 years we were the only boat with a working refer left. One problem with electric is you need a generator (there will be multiple days when you have no sun for solar) and when that goes south in some isolated anchorage you can't get FedEx to bring you those needed parts. Now true, things have gotten a lot better getting parts since we cruised, but propane systems are simple which works out in the "wild and woolies". One more advantage, our sour dough starter lived behind the refer which kept it nice and warm. :dance:
 
There are a lot of advantages of propane over elec cooking in 3rd world countries. Spent over 2 years in central America and propane was easy to get. We actually had a propane refer and after 2 years we were the only boat with a working refer left. One problem with electric is you need a generator (there will be multiple days when you have no sun for solar) and when that goes south in some isolated anchorage you can't get FedEx to bring you those needed parts. Now true, things have gotten a lot better getting parts since we cruised, but propane systems are simple which works out in the "wild and woolies". One more advantage, our sour dough starter lived behind the refer which kept it nice and warm. :dance:
So I read your post on benefits of gas and thought to myself "that was my thinking until recently - induction is much more efficient so LFP are viable...." And then I got to your last point about sourdough starter. Was enough to get me thinking about a propane fridge.

All good points. Most folks cite concerns about safety or they run a generator anyway so electric is fine but for us, the biggest reason we would go induction is it is so much cooler. Gas throws a lot of excess heat.
 
Shroud and vent fan over stove go a long way to remove heat and moisture.

Can be permanent or portable.... as my boat and others I've had fortunately had opening ports right above the stove.
 
So I read your post on benefits of gas and thought to myself "that was my thinking until recently - induction is much more efficient so LFP are viable...." And then I got to your last point about sourdough starter. Was enough to get me thinking about a propane fridge.

All good points. Most folks cite concerns about safety or they run a generator anyway so electric is fine but for us, the biggest reason we would go induction is it is so much cooler. Gas throws a lot of excess heat.

It's hard to cover everything in a short blurb. I have cruised with all electric in my 70 footer and propane in 39, 40 and 45 footers, all in the tropics. I cannot say that I noticed more heat with propane vs electric. There may be, but at no time did I or the first mate say, "Wow, this propane really makes it hot in here". I have a factory installed propane in my MS350 but installation different than the 400 since galley is on the port side. Tank is on flybridge and a solenoid valve at tank controlled by switch in galley. If we were going to cruise long distances in distant places, I would change out elec refer for propane. Simple and easy to keep going where holding plates and regular refers have more issues in the tropics. In the 70fter we had 14ea 8D batteries, inverter and 2 big gensets so elec was no problem. I will say that in smaller boats they have used alcohol and kerosene stoves. Of all the fires onboard I saw, it was in handling these fuels. Saw 4 boats catch fire in central America over a 2 year period.
 
It's hard to cover everything in a short blurb. I have cruised with all electric in my 70 footer and propane in 39, 40 and 45 footers, all in the tropics. I cannot say that I noticed more heat with propane vs electric. There may be, but at no time did I or the first mate say, "Wow, this propane really makes it hot in here". I have a factory installed propane in my MS350 but installation different than the 400 since galley is on the port side. Tank is on flybridge and a solenoid valve at tank controlled by switch in galley. If we were going to cruise long distances in distant places, I would change out elec refer for propane. Simple and easy to keep going where holding plates and regular refers have more issues in the tropics. In the 70fter we had 14ea 8D batteries, inverter and 2 big gensets so elec was no problem. I will say that in smaller boats they have used alcohol and kerosene stoves. Of all the fires onboard I saw, it was in handling these fuels. Saw 4 boats catch fire in central America over a 2 year period.

For me, not just electric, but induction. It is significantly cooler than an old-school coil or halogen/glass cooktop. I agree 100% that propane over a traditional electric stove.

Our boat is pretty small - even with an opening port right over the range, there is a fair amount of heat generated. Not a big deal - I've had it for 25-years (installed the stove new back then). But with newer technology, just thinking of next generation.

Peter
 
Check with your insurance carrier......... they may require that the gas fitting be done by a certified installer, and that the whole installation is signed off by a "professional" to insure coverage???
Don't know for sure, but if it were me, I would want to know for sure that I had not inadvertently created a "loop hole" to deny a claim. :)
I am planning on having the installation done with the guidance of a surveyor or a mechanic/technician that is certified.
 
Where did MS put the propane sensor? If it didn't come with propane installed I really doubt there's a sensor at all. You'll have to do that yourself. I used a two channel alarm/control that alarms and shuts off the flow if it detects a leak. I put one sensor directly under the stove and the other down in the engine room. Note that most any hydrocarbon can trip the alarm, I once had one go off from a leaking paint can. That's not a bad thing.
A lot of people with trawler style boats put the propane tank up on the fly bridge, but in most cases this will not be compliant. Especially anywhere near the conduit going down into the engine room. The tank must be placed where any leak can't find it's way into the boat. I put mine out on the swim platform. (I actually have done this on my last three boats.) It was a bit harder routing the hose that way, but it was the only location that would be safe. You'll see that when you look up the ABYC standard.


To clarify, I looked at a MS like mine that came with propane new. The manufacturer mounted a propane locker on the outside shelf on the starboard side of the fly bridge and ran the propane supply line down the pipe chase.

The owner didn't know and I wasn't able to see where the line exited to get to the stove.


I believe this will be in compliance. Also another member did give me a copy of the ABYC regulations for reference.
 
It's hard to cover everything in a short blurb. I have cruised with all electric in my 70 footer and propane in 39, 40 and 45 footers, all in the tropics. I cannot say that I noticed more heat with propane vs electric. There may be, but at no time did I or the first mate say, "Wow, this propane really makes it hot in here". I have a factory installed propane in my MS350 but installation different than the 400 since galley is on the port side. Tank is on flybridge and a solenoid valve at tank controlled by switch in galley. If we were going to cruise long distances in distant places, I would change out elec refer for propane. Simple and easy to keep going where holding plates and regular refers have more issues in the tropics. In the 70fter we had 14ea 8D batteries, inverter and 2 big gensets so elec was no problem. I will say that in smaller boats they have used alcohol and kerosene stoves. Of all the fires onboard I saw, it was in handling these fuels. Saw 4 boats catch fire in central America over a 2 year period.


I'm getting ready to do the loop next year and am thinking about being on the hook, diesel fuel consumption and the need to run the generator. I bought a used propane stove off a sailboat and other than the gimbal mounts is the exact same as my electric. I also had a sailboat that had propane and liked the ease of use. Thanks for the information though.
 
Propane sensors have a short life span. InStall it in such a way as it is easily replaceable and carry a spare sensor.

Where did you find that information?

Mine is 23 years old and as far as I know, still working.
 
Where did you find that information?

Mine is 23 years old and as far as I know, still working.

Modern propane sensors are designed so that a failure activates the system. It is pretty common knowledge in the industry that once energized there is a time life of 2-5 years for the sensor.

Your sensor being 23 years old is either different from the modern ones, has failed and you are unaware or you got an unusually good one.

Do you know which brand you have?

I have replaced my sensors on an average of every four years due to failure that activates the system. For this reason I keep a spare on board.
 
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Pretty well known in my boating circles that sensors (propane, CO, Fire) have a limited "trustworthy" life..... usually less than 10 years. Hard to argue with as it is often considered one of the MOST important safety systems aboard.

This from a major player in that business.....

https://www.fireboy-xintex.com/wp-c...lace the Propane Fume Sensors every 3-4 years.

Test the Sensors by holding a Butane lighter to the sensor. Within a few seconds, the Red “Danger” LED should illuminate and the alarm horn will sound. Remove the lighter from the Sensor and mute the alarm horn. After approximately one minute, the Red LED will shut off

Maintenance
The system should be tested periodically in the fashion described in the previous sections. Due to the harsh environmental conditions in marine applications, it is recommended to replace the Propane Fume Sensors every 3-4 years
 
Yep. Butane lighter, we always have a couple on hand. Most any other volatile hydrocarbon can trip them too.
 
As the owner of an MS Pilot 34 which is all-electric and in Maine waters, I would happily exchange my induction electric range for a propane one. Having to run the generator every time I want to make coffee, cook a meal, etc. is annoying, loud, and obtrusive to others at anchor. Further, the most unreliable equipment on every boat I have ever owned, with perhaps the exception of the head, is the generator. A constant source of maintenance headaches for me. As we speak my three year old generator engine is overheating and apparently needs to have the heat exchanger flushed and descaled. No cooking available at all on the boat as a result.

In decades of sailing on boats with propane ovens and stoves I never once had an issue. Guess I am a little touchy about this subject at the moment due to repeated problems with my Next-Gen 3.5 generator that is three years old and has very few hours on it. If I could live without it I would.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest. LOL!
 
As the owner of an MS Pilot 34 which is all-electric and in Maine waters, I would happily exchange my induction electric range for a propane one. Having to run the generator every time I want to make coffee, cook a meal, etc. is annoying, loud, and obtrusive to others at anchor. Further, the most unreliable equipment on every boat I have ever owned, with perhaps the exception of the head, is the generator. A constant source of maintenance headaches for me. As we speak my three year old generator engine is overheating and apparently needs to have the heat exchanger flushed and descaled. No cooking available at all on the boat as a result.

In decades of sailing on boats with propane ovens and stoves I never once had an issue. Guess I am a little touchy about this subject at the moment due to repeated problems with my Next-Gen 3.5 generator that is three years old and has very few hours on it. If I could live without it I would.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest. LOL!

I agree that a genset while a luxury can be eventually replaced by redundant systems to charge the batteries and propane a versatile tool when aboard if done safely.

I replaced a broken electric stove/oven with a propane stovetop and large two rack toaster oven.

When at anchor, menus included things cooked on the stovetop. When at dock I had all the versatility of a normal kitchen.
 
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