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Stove/wood burner


LadyR

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Hi everyone 👋 I’m really new to narrowboats but hopefully will be completing the purchase of our first very soon subject to survey. She is a 51ft cruiser and I really want a wood burner/stove. Any tips on what I should be looking for. Open to suggestions as I want to get it right and be all cozy in the winter. Thank yooooo

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If its your only heat source, place it in the center of the boat, not next to the front door. Morso Squirrel is the defacto burner,  5kW output and can have a back boiler fitted for hot water and central heating. Other makes are available. Don't buy cheap Machine Mart junk.

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Thank you. It is not the only heat source, it has Webasto central heating, but intend on using this for when it’s really cold and mainly using the burner. I have changed my mind about where to place it as by the doors doesn’t seem like a popular option if there is a choice. 

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3 minutes ago, LadyR said:

Thank you. It is not the only heat source, it has Webasto central heating, but intend on using this for when it’s really cold and mainly using the burner. I have changed my mind about where to place it as by the doors doesn’t seem like a popular option if there is a choice. 

It fine by the doors if you want to heat the great outdoors but most want to heat the boat!

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If you have the choice, site it on the left side of the boat. That way, when you're keeping to the right if oncoming traffic it's normally further away from overhanging trees and bridge/tunnel sides.

 

It's a multi fuel you need, so you can burn smokeless fuel too rather than be tied to bulkier wood.

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29 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

If you have the choice, site it on the left side of the boat. That way, when you're keeping to the right if oncoming traffic it's normally further away from overhanging trees and bridge/tunnel sides.

 

It's a multi fuel you need, so you can burn smokeless fuel too rather than be tied to bulkier wood.

Also coal can last all night (damped down, so not a lot of heat) but easy to wake up the fire in the morning.  Wood won’t last over night.

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5 minutes ago, Chewbacka said:

Also coal can last all night (damped down, so not a lot of heat) but easy to wake up the fire in the morning.  Wood won’t last over night.

You were braver than me Chewy - I discounted that factor to avoid thee inevitable "I can make 3 willow sticks cook a whole hedgehog and still last til morning...." :D

 

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7 minutes ago, Chewbacka said:

Also coal can last all night (damped down, so not a lot of heat) but easy to wake up the fire in the morning.  Wood won’t last over night.

Wood will last overnight, it takes a tad more effort in ensuring the wood is properly seasoned and selecting the bits for overnight but it is fairly easy to do.

Its probably worth mentioning just chucking a few bits on a bed of coal will never be ideal, wood needs a proper bed of ash, coal nees a clean bed, so mixing the two is not ideal

3 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

You were braver than me Chewy - I discounted that factor to avoid thee inevitable "I can make 3 willow sticks cook a whole hedgehog and still last til morning...." :D

 

Maybe not a hedgehog :)

 

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Just be aware that some places, London is one, are banning wood burners. A multi fuel stove that can burn cleanly may be the best option.

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3 minutes ago, Skeg said:

Just be aware that some places, London is one, are banning wood burners. A multi fuel stove that can burn cleanly may be the best option.

That’s very useful info. Thank you 😊 

2 hours ago, Jen-in-Wellies said:

By the doors is a popular location, but not the best location. Somewhere near the middle is much superior as others have said. Aside from the Squirrel, another good stove is the Boatman. Cheaper too!

Thanks very much. They’re not far from me either!

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4 hours ago, Ray T said:

Basic (soliftec.com)

but ignore the bit about insulating the flue inside and the chimney outside.  

Dons tin helmet and retires to bunker (heated perfectly by a Puffin without insulation to help heat the great outdoors).

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8 minutes ago, Jen-in-Wellies said:

Are you planning to install a stove yourselves, or pay some one to fit it?

My husband can do a lot of the work, but we’ve not looked into the regs.  I’m sure we will have to get it commissioned/checked. 

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1 hour ago, Skeg said:

Just be aware that some places, London is one, are banning wood burners. A multi fuel stove that can burn cleanly may be the best option.

This may or may not be true. At present boats are exempt from the smoke control regulations. But in any event you can fit a DEFRA-approved multi fuel stove on your boat and produce emissions as clean as the land dwellers who do the same.

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10 hours ago, LadyR said:

My husband can do a lot of the work, but we’ve not looked into the regs.  I’m sure we will have to get it commissioned/checked. 

The regs are in the British Standard BS 8511:2010, which is handily summarised in the solfitec link that @Ray T provides in an earlier reply. The only checking is in the Boat Safety Scheme examination and this is extremely simple. Basically, no signs of scorching to any woodwork around the stove, no visble gaps around flues and in the stove and the stove must be fixed down.

Jen

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Another vote for the Boatman stove, multi fuel, compact. A one man craft industry in a shed in Manchester, but a beautifully simple and effective design. Just one thing, you need slightly smaller than average wood. Some suppliers provide this, some you’ll have to chop up yourself. Of course you can source your own wood as many do!

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50 minutes ago, droshky said:

Another vote for the Boatman stove, multi fuel, compact. A one man craft industry in a shed in Manchester, but a beautifully simple and effective design. Just one thing, you need slightly smaller than average wood. Some suppliers provide this, some you’ll have to chop up yourself. Of course you can source your own wood as many do!

The man in a shed can be quite hard to get hold of. He is usually too busy making stoves to answer the phone. Email seems to get answered eventually.

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Thanks guys. Yes he seems locals to me so might drop him an email and arrange to go have a look. I love the look of the Boatman

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Don't forget the Salamanda Hobbit multifuel stove. It is unashamedly an almost exact, but slightly smaller copy of the superb Morso Squirrel stove. It is a very high quality, cast iron British made unit and delivers an impressive 4kw output. 

 

I've owned and used Squirrel stoves in two different houses and a Dutch barge, but where space and safety clearances are an issue such as in a narrowboat, the Hobbit stove may well be a better choice and certainly no compromise.

 

A friend of mine raves about his Hobbit to everyone who'll listen. He loads it up in the morning, goes out to work all day leaving it unattended, enjoys it of an evening, banks it up and goes to bed: it's in use 24 hours a day.

 

It's great looking too.

 

They do have a 3 month lead time on orders I understand, but maybe worth the wait.

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And, a bit smaller than the Hobbit is the 'pipsqueak' and excellent tiny stove from the same stable.

Tried an experiment to get our 30' NB as hot as possible, but once we got above 55  degrees C had to give up as we couldn't breathe - Stove 1 : Humans 0

 

 

To give an indication of size, the firebox is only 8" square.

 

More a 'twig burner' than a 'log burner'.

IMG_20130912_123236.jpg

Edited by Alan de Enfield
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