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Thread: oil drip

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    Member akriverunner's Avatar
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    Default oil drip

    I am looking for info from people that have oil drips in their cabins or homes and how they like the brand they have and fuel consumption and sq footage they are heating with it.
    21' RMX Cargo Jet

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    Quote Originally Posted by akriverunner View Post
    I am looking for info from people that have oil drips in their cabins or homes and how they like the brand they have and fuel consumption and sq footage they are heating with it.
    Thank you so much for posting this question, because I've been wondering the same thing....I've been looking at Godins, Nordics, and Drolets and was wondering what people have been using. Looking forward to seeing what folks post here on this.

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    Member alaska4ever's Avatar
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    Contact Rural Energy Enterprises in Anchorage, they can give you all the info. I took care of a lodge that had one and it was about 90% efficient.

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    Supporting Member Old John's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by northbird1 View Post
    Thank you so much for posting this question, because I've been wondering the same thing....I've been looking at Godins, Nordics, and Drolets and was wondering what people have been using. Looking forward to seeing what folks post here on this.
    What make/model is the one that Dave Luce has in his Inn...??? I have often thought of tossing out that propane thing I have and investing in an oil heater just like what he has...

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    Member greythorn3's Avatar
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    you can make them 100% efficient if you run the exhaust into the room too. might not be good for your life though.
    Semper Fi!

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    Member akriverunner's Avatar
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    dave luce's is a napoleon, they dont make oil stoves anymore so i am wondering what else is out there that people are using. i know the napoleons are nice and work well but i wonder if you can still get parts for them if a guy can find used ones for sale.
    21' RMX Cargo Jet

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    Default drip stove

    we lived in a 925sq.ft cabin inthe interior for a couple of years and the only heat source we had was a drip stove.We burned 100 gallons a month on average in the winter months.Our landlord built the cabin and he was a real hack.If the cabin was built and insulated properly the fuel usage would of dropped quite a bit.I don't remember which brand it was for sure but I want to say it was a drolet.A couple of things I liked about a drip stove was we did alot of cooking on it.Throw on a pot of soup or a roast and let it slow cook all day.We also used it to heat our shower water and dish water.

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    I have at the lodge a perfection carbureted stove and a Nordic in my cabin (16x16). I am not out there in the winter but come the last two weeks of Sept. I have had snow and almost always have very hard frost sometimes getting to 15 degrees. The perfection stove is in the dining room and if I block off the hall to the rest of the building it keeps the area (28x30) warm enough to be comfortable 55-60 with no wind. I don't trust it turned up past medium or half throttle, any more it really makes some rumbling/spooky noise. This stove is a fuel hog and I am changing it out as soon as I get a battery plant for power 24-7.

    In my cabin with the Nordic stove I only light it in the evenings to make getting up to some heat comfortable. I however did not install the stove like I should with the stack. I ran straight out the back of the stove through the wall and should've run the thin wall stack in the cabin to use the heat that goes out the stack. This stove is very fuel efficient but again I don't turn it up too high as the thing starts to glow and make noise. This stove is also carbureted and needs the stove mounted high to have a good head on the supply line.

    I would highly recommend the Nordic Stove, pricey but this doesn't take up much room and brings the combustion air from outside not in the cabin. Hope this helps and the guys at Alaska Plumbing and Heating are awesome to work with and would get advice on installation from them before you install as the Nordic has some stack and fuel guide lines that need to be follows in my experience.

    George
    George Riddle
    Owner/Operator
    Blueberry Island Lodge
    www.blueberryislandlodge.com

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    Premium Member denalihunter's Avatar
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    I'm surprised to hear they don't make oil stoves anymore. About every boat in Alaska runs on oil stoves. I had a nice on in my 45' F/V Skeeter years ago. You mght check any marine supply store, as I know they are still in use, unless fisherman are packing wood and coal, or using electricity for heat. I loved the one I had. I spent a lot of time looking through the glass for 10 years adjusting the drip. Once you got it dialed in, it worked like a charm. A quick search found this one: http://www.suremarineservice.com/00-ber.aspx

    Glad you brought this up! I hadn't even considered these for putting in my cabins or work sheds. For $1200 bucks, and the efficiency, that's not too bad.

    Good luck.
    Claude
    Experience Real Alaska! www.alpinecreeklodge.com

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    Member akriverunner's Avatar
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    oil stoves are still being made just Napoleon brand isn't making them anymore. i use a toyo 30 in my little cabin now but i would like to find the "best" if possible oil drip to use in my bigger cabin i am building along with a toyo so when i am not there i can use the drip stove to come back to a warm place. i plan on using a toyo while im there because they are a little more efficient.
    21' RMX Cargo Jet

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    Toyo and Monitor will always be more efficient. We'd all use them but it isn't an option if you don't have electricity.

    My oil stove experience started with a Perfection. Not very efficient but it served us well. I had a significant "in" with Nordic Stove and got one of their mid size models and the thermostat kit to go with it. I know it's a good stove but I couldn't bear t look at it so I went to North Country Stoves, Northeat, and Heatland to go retail shopping for one of the many attractive and efficient stoves they carried. I chose an Efel. It looks great and has worked perfectly for about 10 years now. No regrets. Honestly the efficiency comparison between the brands of cast iron oil stoves is very, very similar. Most use one of two standard high efficiency oil controllers and most offer non-electric thermostats as options. So it comes down to proper sizing, which is a really big deal, and appearance. There are several good looking models available from the sources I mentioned. Go shop around.

    Oil stoves aren't the best at initial heat-up of an occasional use cabin. Even if you buy a stove that's too big for the space it'll be slower than a wood stove to heat the space up. Where oil stoves really shine is at maintenance heat. Stoves should be sized to burn in their efficient range for their primary mission, which is maintenance heat. A stova that's too big will burn too low and will soot up. Be honest with the sales guys and let them steer you to the right stove. My Efel is a small stove but I have a wood stove to help with initial heat. Once the cabin is comfortable the oil stove is the sole heat source. It burns 2-3 gallons a day for winter maintenance heat. Less during the week when we're gone since the doors stay closed and the temp is turned down a little.

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    Member dkwarthog's Avatar
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    Interesting MR Pid. How big of a cabin are you heating to burn 2-3 gal/day?

    I'm looking at heating my 30x40 shop with oil stove without electricty. But at $400/month I may just live with a cold storage building and occasional woodstove use. Good info on this thread. Thanks guys..

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    Many years ago there was a automotive shop up on Lucas Rd. in Wasilla that had a wood stove set up with a large rock in the middle of the fire box and had a drip line that he could regulate and he used old moter oil for fuel. After he got the fire going and the rock got hot he would open the valve and the oil would hit the hot rock and vaporize and burn quite hot with very little smoke. dkwarthog if you have a wood stove in place it might be something to try.

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    Member greythorn3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Bend View Post
    Many years ago there was a automotive shop up on Lucas Rd. in Wasilla that had a wood stove set up with a large rock in the middle of the fire box and had a drip line that he could regulate and he used old moter oil for fuel. After he got the fire going and the rock got hot he would open the valve and the oil would hit the hot rock and vaporize and burn quite hot with very little smoke. dkwarthog if you have a wood stove in place it might be something to try.

    ive run home made barrel stoves with a copper line pinched into the firbox and a valve to regulate diesel in it, and it works very well.. u should give that a try, way cheaper to run then pure fuel oil and you can just heat with scrap pallets and fallen trees, maybe even burn some used oil if you filter it good.
    Semper Fi!

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    Quote Originally Posted by dkwarthog View Post
    Interesting MR Pid. How big of a cabin are you heating to burn 2-3 gal/day?

    I'm looking at heating my 30x40 shop with oil stove without electricty. But at $400/month I may just live with a cold storage building and occasional woodstove use. Good info on this thread. Thanks guys..
    About 600 sq ft of main area with another addition attached beyond. When the temps get below 10 above or so the addition requires more heat but that's more to do with the layout than the heater. Oil stoves need to be located more centrally than higher output heaters like wood stoves. If I leave the oil stove on all week while we're in town it burns between 10-15 gallons depending on the weather but if we know it'll be really cold we don't leave it on. The non-electric thermostat is a must in my opinion. It makes a world of difference in comfort and fuel economy. Especially with a loft. A steady burning oil stove won't cook the loft like a woodstove does.

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    Member dkwarthog's Avatar
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    Thanks PID. good info. I'd be looking to maintain probably about 40-45 degrees and use the woodstove to warm it up more if I need it to work on something. Even if I could keep it just above freezing that would be alot better since I wouldnt be worrying about things freezing.


    Quote Originally Posted by greythorn3 View Post
    ive run home made barrel stoves with a copper line pinched into the firbox and a valve to regulate diesel in it, and it works very well.. u should give that a try, way cheaper to run then pure fuel oil and you can just heat with scrap pallets and fallen trees, maybe even burn some used oil if you filter it good.

    Interesting idea, but I only spend a small amount of my life in the shop (maybe and hour a day) and I'm not a huge fan of rube goldberg systems running unattended. I got too much invested in that building... Thanks for the info, maybe something I'll play around with if I ever get some spare time...

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    Member fullbush's Avatar
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    I used to have a Preway w/ a gravity fed carb. It didn't run very good at all in the winter and I think it was mainly due to cold fuel. The flash point of diesel can vary between 126F and 204F (google). Anyway my theory is, if you could pre-heat your fuel prior to it hitting the pot wouldn't it be more efficient? I think so, I know I was getting #1 and it couldn't have been gelling. heres a pic of a Preway like I had






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    Default oil drip heater sizing

    For a rule-of-thumb estimation as to btu's needed to heat your cabin space, take your total cubic foot of space ( sq. footage X ceiling height), multiply this by 8. The resultant number will equal the approximate amount of BTU input you'll need to heat the space. Most oil heaters are rated in BTU output, so multiply the input figure by .8 ( 80% ) to reach your BTU output amount. Because many people use these heaters to heat up cold cabins, many will use the 8 btu's per cu.ft as their actual output figure. It's up to you to and your particular situation. This rule of thumb is for cabins only, that reside in very cold climate conditions. Do not use this to estimate for a full size house.
    A room-to-room heat loss calc is best for a larger home.

    Oil drip heaters are what are referred to as a "vaporizing" burner. They are about 70% combustion efficiency at best.
    Mfg'rs will claim 80%, or even 90% as someone has earlier stated, but that 90% figure is dubious. They are taking liberties with the science, and talking in terms of "thermal efficiency" etc, and not combustion efficiency. You can get 90% combustion efficiency ( a condensing unit w/ very corrosive condensate that must be disposed of ) with an "atomizing" oil burner, but not with a "vaporizing" burner.
    "Input" is the energy capacity represented by the fuel you are using; "output" is the net heat you get out of the unit after the combustion process has taken place. #1 fuel oil = 140,000 btu input per gallon. Propane = 86,000 btu per gallon.

    Monitor's and Toyo's are glorified vaporizing burners, and represent the peak of our current technology at combusting fuel oil in a vaporizing process. As Mr. Pid pointed out, to accomplish the efficiencies these can produce, you need a constant supply of steady AC voltage to run the microprocessor controls.
    The higher end vaporizing non-electric units such as Nordic, Franco Belge, the old Napoleon models ( which were actually made for them by Franco Belge ) etc, use newer technology developed in Europe that are much more efficient than the older, and now extinct, Preway, Dearborn, and Perfection brand US-made oil drip heaters. These older heaters were about 50-60% efficient at best. It was sad to see the US Mfgr's get out of this business back in the '80's, none the less. These units could be famously finicky to operate at times, but there are probably still thousands out in the bush still running today.
    All the newer European model oil drip heaters on the market today are in the 70% + efficiency ranges.
    As Mr. Pid also pointed out, these units aren't the best at quickly heating up a space. The same is true of any gas-fired stove. The advantage of these gas and oil stoves is in the ease of manipulating the fuel supply valve/carburetor in maintaining an even space temp after it is warmed up.
    You can't beat a woodstove for the quick-boost kick of heating up a cold cabin.

    The trick to keeping these oil drip heaters working well is to only burn #1 fuel oil (or cleaner ) in them- never use #2. They will burn #2; just commit yourself to never buy #2--ever. You will not regret it. Take the cheap route and use some #2 in a heating appliance in Alaska, especially if it is a vaporizing burner, and you can experience the joy and frustration of learning things the hard way-- gelled fuel lines in cold weather, oil-line plug-ups, and sooted up burners at the lower firing ranges.
    Any of the current European brand oil-drip heaters are very good, reliable units. The $$'s go up as you select a better looking, stove-style unit; but the basic no-frills versions are very reliable heaters that will last for years.

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    Mr. Bill...thank you for that great bit of wisdom!!

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    We bought an old one and fixed it up for heating one of our greenhouses, we hooked ups small pump and and coiled a buncha pipe through it to heat the water, anyway, it was running on desiel, and with the absolute minimum oil to keep it lit it was still going throughout 50 gallons in about a week
    Eccleasties 8:11 Because the sentence against an evil deed is not executed quickly, There for the hearts of the sons of men among them are given fully to do evil.

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