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Old 04-15-2009, 03:35 AM   #1
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I need a new stove for my Morgan 33 Out Island. Everyone here in Vermont uses propane. A friend who had a blow up favors a Wallas diesel. Any ideas? We will eventually be doing blue water sailing.
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Old 04-15-2009, 12:40 PM   #2
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I need a new stove for my Morgan 33 Out Island. Everyone here in Vermont uses propane. A friend who had a blow up favors a Wallas diesel. Any ideas? We will eventually be doing blue water sailing.
Have you considered kerosene? Here is my take on the question.

The case for Kerosene

When choosing a fuel for cooking and heating on a long distance cruising boat, you basically have a choice of 3 types. Gas, Diesel or Kerosene.

GAS.

Most yachts use “gas”, which is either propane, butane or a mixture of the two. Whilst this is a convenient fuel, it has many drawbacks. It is potentially very dangerous, as it is heavier than air. It will therefore settle in the boat from a leak, and if ignited, explode violently. It is also relatively expensive, and although widely available, there is no standardization. Many countries will only fill their own cylinders, made of a specific material to their specification. Cylinders have many differing valve fittings, and are made of steel, stainless steel, aluminium and plastics. The steel cylinders always rust, and it is not uncommon for a boat to have 3 or 4 different types of cylinders on board. It is of course possible to purchase the gas in one cylinder and then decant into another cylinder. This is however also a potentially dangerous operation and illegal in many countries. Often the length of people’s stay, in remote places like Chagos , is limited by amount of gas they are able to carry.

DIESEL

This is a fine fuel for cold climates, but not practical in the tropics due to the fact that it produces too much heat down below. I also do not know of any gimbaled diesel stoves. All the diesel stoves that I have seen, are mounted athwart ships. This limits the cooking whilst sailing heeled over.

KEROSENE

This has been our fuel of choice for 12 years. It is a safe fuel, as it will only burn , never explode. It is cheap, as it is either government subsidised, or low taxed in many countries. It is very efficient and economical. We have a 70 liter tank on board, which lasts about 2 years. We therefore fill up when we find a cheap, convenient, source of supply. For example we filled up in Argentina in 2005, where kerosene was half the cost of diesel and available from a pump at the marine filling station. We next filled up in Tanzania in 2008 where it was again easily available and cheap. In the French island of Mayotte, we were gived 50 liters of “jet fuel” by the French Foreign Legion. They put it into aircraft by the ton,and refused our offer of payment. It worked just fine! Kerosene stoves get hot fast, and easily reach higher temperatures than is possible using gas.

Of course there are negatives. The need for preheating the burners being the main one. This is usually done with alcohol, normally methylated spirits , but in Madagascar we found that we could purchase the local rum, 96% alcohol, in bulk for a few cents a liter. This works well as a preheating fuel, and can even be used for drinking in an emergency. Some people complain about the smell, but this is only an issue if you do not preheat properly.

Spare parts are still readily available for the burners, we use a supplier in Germany. A Swiss company, Bertschi, is producing an excellent, though expensive burner. Our stove, and the heater were made in the UK by Taylors. They are virtually indestructible, being made from brass and stainless steel. The stove top was originally enameled cast iron. When this started to flake after 12 years of full time daily use, I had a replacement laser cut from 6mm 316 stainless steel. This cost only about 1/3 of the quoted cost of a replacement stove top. It is easy to clean, looks good and will last a life time.

Besides Taylors, there are a number of other manufacturers of kerosene stoves and heaters for yachts, such as Optimus, and Force 10. It would also be feasible to convert any gas stove, to kerose
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Old 04-15-2009, 05:24 PM   #3
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Thank you for this great response Jenain.

I am sure there are many others with views on this matter but, for the record, my own choice is also a Taylors paraffin stove. I have fitted a Taylors 030 paraffin cooker aboard NAUSIKAA. Not only does it work very well but, having a huge amount of brass, is a pleasure to the eye.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 04-16-2009, 05:32 PM   #4
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Thank you for this great response Jenain.

I am sure there are many others with views on this matter but, for the record, my own choice is also a Taylors paraffin stove. I have fitted a Taylors 030 paraffin cooker aboard NAUSIKAA. Not only does it work very well but, having a huge amount of brass, is a pleasure to the eye.

Aye // Stephen
I love the Taylor kerosene stoves--they are very nice I agree that a kerosene stove is a better choice from a safety perspective than a propane stove. Both kerosene and diesel stoves can have smell issues and venting issues but I think they are well worth dealing with to have a safer fuel than propane.

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Old 04-17-2009, 02:14 AM   #5
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Thank you very much. I knew kerosene used to be used a lot but didn't know it was still so popular. It is hard preparing for long distance sailing when my marina, which is very good, caters to weekenders. Now my next project is to replace the leaky fuel tank.

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Old 04-17-2009, 04:55 AM   #6
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The one strange thing about paraffin /kerosene is that it has so many different, and sometimes confusing, names in different languages or, as is the case in English, even in the same language.

I have attached a list of names it is known as in different countries. Unfortunately, the country index of the list is in Swedish but that should not cause too many problems. I will try to find the time to convert it into English this weekend.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 04-18-2009, 02:02 AM   #7
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The one strange thing about paraffin /kerosene is that it has so many different, and sometimes confusing, names in different languages or, as is the case in English, even in the same language.

I have attached a list of names it is known as in different countries. Unfortunately, the country index of the list is in Swedish but that should not cause too many problems. I will try to find the time to convert it into English this weekend.

Aye // Stephen
Very Helpful ... are you able to produce a similar international lexicon for Diesel fuel ?

Regarding the coice of stove :

My current cooking fuel is propane/butane but since Tadpole has a Diesel motor, I intend to switch to a Diesel cooker (single fuel philosophy) ... my choice in the Diesel cooker field is a Wallas ... with a blower lid the Wallas will also replace my current propane cabin heater ...
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Old 04-18-2009, 07:22 AM   #8
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l ... are you able to produce a similar international lexicon for Diesel fuel ?

... my choice in the Diesel cooker field is a Wallas ... with a blower lid the Wallas will also replace my current propane cabin heater ...
I don't think diesel is such a problem. As it is used on all merchant ships (even those using bunker C need to start their engines on diesel and run generators on the same fuel) and fishing boats it is available everywhere and in every port it will be known as gas oil, as it is called in the merchant navies of the world.

Regarding the Wallas with a blower; I also considered that. It is a nice bit of kit with the advantage of cost as you pay for a stove and get a heater too. For most of us it would also mean just having one type of fuel on board and it would save weight. However, my stove is at the bottom of the companion way which, as the hatch is at least cracked open most of the time, would result in a tremendous heat loss.

Even with the hatch shut there would be little heat finding its way forward of the cabin bulkhead. Sailing mainly in northern waters, I would like to have a hot water radiator system but maybe I should change my cruising ground instead?

Aye // Stephen
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Old 10-06-2009, 01:03 PM   #9
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We always use Methalated Spirts on small yachts (and racing yachts) and propane on larger yachts (80+ ft) and power boats.
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Old 10-06-2009, 02:05 PM   #10
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Even with the hatch shut there would be little heat finding its way forward of the cabin bulkhead. Sailing mainly in northern waters, I would like to have a hot water radiator system but maybe I should change my cruising ground instead?

Aye // Stephen
Oh, don't change your cruising grounds--I'm sure it is lovely there. A hydronic heating system would be great. Is there no space or place for a small bulkhead mounted saloon stove? There are a few small diesel ones--in particular I'm thinking of the Dickenson Newport bulhead mounted diesel heater. It's not super small but nice. One used to be able to find the Force 10 Cosy Cabin Heater in diesel burning model but now all seem to be propane only.

Someone I know has a tiny wood burning stove in his small boat for heating during winter sailing. It is a Navigator Stove Works "Sardine" and it works great. Here are some pics of the little stove and the little boat:









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