Pellets burn very, very fast. Because of this, we decided to try a recommendation from a marina friend to try coal in our solid fuel stove. After 48 hours (about 30 of these spent in front of the fire, trying new tactics) we seem to have found a happy medium with the pellets and coal burning. The coal was hard to start and burns slow, but it also dies easily and randomly, and the combination seems like quite a brilliant discovery on our part.
In the meantime, we've had a lot of boat projects.
I finally finished our curtains. The back windows are enormous, and covering them for the winter might actually help us keep the heat in. It is a nice change, because previous to this, we didn't have 100% privacy. The curtains I had hung in the back were see through, and now that we're on a more trafficked dock, we are happy to be able to close ourselves in.
We've been staying warm another way....FOOD. The stove gets everything nice and warm in here, and we're all (Justin, Gollum and I) working on getting an extra layer of fat to keep us warm.
We don't fancy the idea of sinking, as that would NOT be a warm experience. Diver Dan is the man to call to change our zincs, which keep our boat rust-free and happy. It was about 45 degrees outside all day, and the water temperature seems to be about 48 degrees. This was right before he jumped in to change the zincs. We could hear his bubbles while he was under, and this was possibly the most amazing sound I've ever heard in my life.
Gollum isn't sure what to think of the cold weather, but she loves Aunt Pat's blanket and keeps wrapping herself up in it.
Ahh, the flames.
We have been taking insane amounts of trips to Home Depot in friends cars lately to purchase this and that. Today, we spent our time and money on a few stove related projects. Here, you can see the new aluminum sheets that we put down on the floor to save our carpeting. We've already dropped a couple of hot pellets and made a few small burn holes, so the sheets should prevent that and keep us a bit safer. You can also see the new cement board/firewall backing which will keep the bulkhead cooler.
I also made the screen that is sitting on the port side of the picture (haha). I noticed the amount of heat we could feel when we had the door of the heater open, but didn't want sparks to fly out. The screen seems to be working great so far. I doubled it up so that it gave the sparks less of a chance to fly out.
This, in essence, is all sources of heat on the boat. You can see the wood/pellet/coal stove, the coals, the pellets, and the space heater.
Sometimes I have to get a bit closer to feel the full effects of the fire. You can see the new damper that we installed in this picture.
Hot, hot heat.
The screen in use.
We currently have no indoor thermometer, so I have no idea what the temperature is, but I can say that we're keeping it much warmer in here than the outdoor temp. We have a few fans running (the built in fan, a fan from my parents, and a space heater fan...without the heat) and the coals/pellets are keeping us nice and toasty!!