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Old 11-12-2008, 09:42 PM   #41
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1976 31' Sovereign
Blairsville , Georgia
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Hi cmell, I'm wondering how many times a night you'll have to get up and feed the heater. A firebox that small can't hold fire for too long. Then during the day when it goes out you'll have frozen cans of veggies maybe. If it were me, I'd be putting in a bigger heater. I heated with wood and no backup for many years and believe me, it's easier to cool a bigger heater down than it is to heat a tiny one up :-) Our friends have lived in a stationary Airstream for 25 years here in N. Ga. Yup, we're down south but the elevation is 2000'. They have a small wood heater (bigger than yours) and a small wood cookstove too. They keep water all winter but have moved the water lines inside the living space to keep them from freezing. My wife and I will be living in our '76 31' AS pretty soon here. We'll be using a smallish propane heater and fire up the AS furnace only if the water lines get threatened. We'll have electricity too.

You're going to have a great time doing this. Even the hard parts will be good. We lived in an 18' X 24' log cabin I built with no electric, kerosene for light, wood to heat and cook and a privy. We did have running cold water because the spring was uphill of the cabin. We weren't high tech at all. We just lived like everyone once did. My oldest daughter was 12 the year we got an inside toilet. It'll make you two closer! But do think about the small size and short fire duration of that little heater. And don't pay too much attention to what the mfg says about burn time. If it ain't burning good it ain't keeping you warm.
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Old 11-16-2008, 03:35 PM   #42
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howdy folks,

things are going pretty well here. We've had a few cold and snowy spells so far, but it keeps on warming back up. no woodstove yet... but it's promised to arrive before we get back from our 6-week christmas break. the chimney is all installed, ready and waiting. the stainless steel heat shield is lying in the shed in its various parts... getting that screwed into place is the next project.

we got our first propane bill last week - $22 for 7.2 gallons since August. so that gives us a little confidence. the solar electricity has been working amazingly, so far we haven't dipped below 89% even with 4 consecutive days of mostly cloudy weather.

this has been a really rainy and humid week. the other day we got back to the trailer at night and there were condensation drips all over the vinyl and metal around the vents. we sopped it up with a towel and grimaced... our first serious encounter with the misty mistress we may end up knowing too well...

we had a hookah party yesterday with 12 people... it was pushing the limits on airstream entertaining, but it was fun to have a bunch of people appreciate our little home.

okay, have a nice week everybody, thank for caring!
chester
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Old 02-04-2009, 02:00 PM   #43
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It's awfully cold today in the Midwest. How about an update from Vermont. Hope all is well.

Steve
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Old 02-05-2009, 05:29 AM   #44
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still recovering from the hookah party perhaps?
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Old 02-06-2009, 09:38 AM   #45
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howdy folks,
you'll be glad to know we haven't died in our sleep or been asphyxiated with too much hookah smoke yet.

we were fortunate enough to be on vacation in New Mexico for most of the month of January, which was consistently 20-30 below at nighttime. after many delays from navigator stove works, our stove was waiting for us when we got back, and we have been enjoying its heat immensely for the last week. when we received the TINY box it arrived in, I was a little doubtful that this toy of a woodstove could possibly provide enough heat. but now that it has kept us toasty through the last two nights of subzero temps, I'm loving it.

as soon as we fire it up, the temperature starts rising at about the rate of a degree every minute or two, and the humidity in the trailer starts dropping from 65-70% to about 30%. of course, due to the stove's miniscule firebox and the trailer's relative lack of insulation, it needs a handful of wood about every half hour to keep warming it up. that would probably annoy me if there were any other options... but I think a bigger stove would be uncomfortably hot to be right next to all the time, not to mention the fact that there's not a spot for a bigger stove at the moment. the stainless steel heat shield is doing a great job of reflecting heat and keeping the walls and ceiling cool.

so that's all great, except for a bunch of chips in our $550 porcelain job. it's just an aesthetic thing, but after paying a ridiculous amount of money and dealing with totally crappy customer service for three months, I was hoping to at least get a near-perfect stove out of it. but we sure as hell aren't returning it... because we finally have all the heat we could possibly need! and it's awesome.

our PV panels have been providing ample electricity to run lights, music, and computer whenever we want, and the dust buster and propane furnace at strategic times. and as the sun rises higher in the sky each day, we're definitely gonna be rolling in electricity. haven't had to use the generator yet, and the most we've discharged the batteries is down to 75% full.

here are some pics of the woodstove, and our thermometer showing that it's -13 degrees outside and 70 degrees inside. yay!
I've also discovered the joy of skiing down the hill from school to the trailer, which is what I'm gonna go do now.
thanks for reading, have a great weekend!
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Old 02-06-2009, 09:52 AM   #46
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Thanks for the update and pictures, I've been wondering how things were going for you through all of the cold you've been having up there. Stay warm!

-Marcus
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Old 02-06-2009, 08:16 PM   #47
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I can't believe how small it is but I am glad you are saying warm!
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Old 02-06-2009, 09:32 PM   #48
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I use wood to stay warm.

The trick is to keep the embers going, so you don't have to get up in the middle of the night to load wood. I usually do have to get up on cold nights.
Your wood stove is awesome. Do you have to load yours every 30 minutes?
Anyway here is another idea . What about a wood stove or a pellet stove in the shed, with a fan blowing warm air into the trailer. It might be worth the luxury of a full nights sleep. Pellet stoves can burn for 24 hours.
There is a $ 40 kit available to turn a 55 gallon drum into a wood stove.
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Old 02-21-2009, 07:54 PM   #49
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good tips for more sleep

Chester,

Read the forums on the Navigator website, there are tips for getting more hours out of a load of wood. It might be enough to get a full night's sleep.....maybe.

Good luck,

Woody
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:45 PM   #50
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Ah to be young again,
I lived in a camper year around for three years to save up the down payment on the farm I've lived on for the past 35 years. You have received an abundance of really good advice from the posts. I live in the Great Lakes snow belt and have a couple suggestions for you from my experience with wood burning stoves, furnaces and being off the grid. First off you need a place to keep your firewood dry and available, next the clearance issues are valid concerns as are the oxygen depletion worry. These stoves use a lot more oxygen than you might imagine. Just a suggestion but you might want to consider putting the stove in a well insulated metal storage shed next to the trailer where you can store your wood and then rig a hot air duct into a window from high on the side of the shed. These are available at Lowes, Home Depot and local lumber yards quite cheap.
You definitely need to drain and antifreeze the plumbing. I used one of those big 5 gallon picnic Jugs for my water (it never froze). I also installed a propane light above the kitchen stove and tapped into the stove supply line. Upon returning home at night I'd light the gas light and put dinner on the stove. Within a half hour the trailer was toasty. After dinner was cooked the stove went off and the light kept it comfortable for hours until I jumped into my winter sleeping bag. One tank of Propane lasted me all winter, I never had to fire up the furnace one time.
If you are using an old fashioned out house you will discover that the disposal of your wood ashes from the stove will serve nicely as top cover in the privy keeping down odor when the weather warms up AND lowering the Ph of your compost.
Good luck Kids, if nothing else you will be more appreciative of luxury when it comes your way in the future.
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:08 AM   #51
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Where did you get that wood stove? I want one!


Quote:
Originally Posted by cmell View Post
howdy folks,
you'll be glad to know we haven't died in our sleep or been asphyxiated with too much hookah smoke yet.

we were fortunate enough to be on vacation in New Mexico for most of the month of January, which was consistently 20-30 below at nighttime. after many delays from navigator stove works, our stove was waiting for us when we got back, and we have been enjoying its heat immensely for the last week. when we received the TINY box it arrived in, I was a little doubtful that this toy of a woodstove could possibly provide enough heat. but now that it has kept us toasty through the last two nights of subzero temps, I'm loving it.

as soon as we fire it up, the temperature starts rising at about the rate of a degree every minute or two, and the humidity in the trailer starts dropping from 65-70% to about 30%. of course, due to the stove's miniscule firebox and the trailer's relative lack of insulation, it needs a handful of wood about every half hour to keep warming it up. that would probably annoy me if there were any other options... but I think a bigger stove would be uncomfortably hot to be right next to all the time, not to mention the fact that there's not a spot for a bigger stove at the moment. the stainless steel heat shield is doing a great job of reflecting heat and keeping the walls and ceiling cool.

so that's all great, except for a bunch of chips in our $550 porcelain job. it's just an aesthetic thing, but after paying a ridiculous amount of money and dealing with totally crappy customer service for three months, I was hoping to at least get a near-perfect stove out of it. but we sure as hell aren't returning it... because we finally have all the heat we could possibly need! and it's awesome.

our PV panels have been providing ample electricity to run lights, music, and computer whenever we want, and the dust buster and propane furnace at strategic times. and as the sun rises higher in the sky each day, we're definitely gonna be rolling in electricity. haven't had to use the generator yet, and the most we've discharged the batteries is down to 75% full.

here are some pics of the woodstove, and our thermometer showing that it's -13 degrees outside and 70 degrees inside. yay!
I've also discovered the joy of skiing down the hill from school to the trailer, which is what I'm gonna go do now.
thanks for reading, have a great weekend!
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Old 03-11-2009, 01:05 AM   #52
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Check Traditional Cast Iron Marine Stoves by Navigator Stove Works,Inc. for those stoves.

I'm thinking about getting one also.

Woody
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Old 08-27-2009, 01:20 PM   #53
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Brooktondale , New York
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Hi Chester!

I am currently living in a 1979 31' Land Yacht, outside of Ithaca, NY., and am preparing to winter in it also. I am curious how you "attached" the shed to the/or next to the airstream. I am contemplating building a "shed" either next to or around the airstream, and adding a wood stove. What have you done re: water? And could you tell me more about the solar installation? I currently have a 6500 watt generator, which is HUGE for my use...and rarely use it. I think my converter is bad, so we've bypassed it and use a battery charger to re-charge my two batteries when I'm running the generator.

Thanks in advance!

Kathy
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Old 08-27-2009, 01:23 PM   #54
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One more thing...did you skirt your airstream for winter? and could you send me photo's? Thanks again, Kathy
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Old 10-21-2009, 07:38 AM   #55
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folks put in wood stoves in yachts all the time. someeven come with them installed. i bought a 27' st. pierre dory that had a "lil cod" in the boat with a gas engine. the boat was built in me in the 60's. an alden yawll i owned in the 80's had a coal stove built in her
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Old 10-21-2009, 07:53 PM   #56
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Nomadness,

Thanks for waking up this old thread. I hadn't read it b4, and it sure sounds like those two kids had an interesting winter.

Can't help but wonder if they are doing it again this year...
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Old 10-27-2009, 09:15 AM   #57
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Hope you are well

How about an update. After trying a winter in an Airstream, what would you do differently, and what worked well ?
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Old 10-28-2009, 09:36 AM   #58
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Thumbs up Full Timing thru out winter in NY

We decided to "go for it" and utilize the airstream as living space full time. Also added a 14 x16 "cabin" that is about 8 feet from airstream, and we are now building a "breezeway" that will connect the two. The "cabin" will have a wood stove, and "space" to stretch out in...a place for the dogs, cat, and plants...and friends. Am also building a porch onto the cabin, so we have a place to still be "outside" yet covered from the rain and snow.

We "skirted" the stream with strawbales and plastic. That has made a big difference.

So far, the airstream window handles drip with water, as do the windows themselves...am hoping the heat from the wood stove will help with this. It's only dipped down into the 20's thus far.

Life is one big adventure! Love the stream.
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Old 10-28-2009, 09:40 AM   #59
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"We decided to "go for it" and utilize the airstream as living space full time. Also added a 14 x16 "cabin" that is about 8 feet from airstream, and we are now building a "breezeway" that will connect the two. The "cabin" will have a wood stove, and "space" to stretch out in...a place for the dogs, cat, and plants...and friends. Am also building a porch onto the cabin, so we have a place to still be "outside" yet covered from the rain and snow. "

Mmmmmmmmm. Sounds lovely. We have similar dreams, for in between extended road trips.
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Old 10-28-2009, 04:02 PM   #60
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mawjett --- start a new thread and link out & back to this one please? I'd (We'd?) really enjoy sharing your observations as the seasons change!

Right now the ground isn't frozen and has water vapor hanging over it like fog, when that gets locked up it will be just whats in the trailer to deal with.

Just be sure to aire your bedding for an hour in the morning, don't make up the beds too fast or after several days or a week you might have problems, keeping warm or condensation-sweat in mattresses...

Also - I think the condensation will slow down a bit once the mushroom forests, err no that's not it umnn, once the really cold weather freezes the moisture out of the cold air masses over Manitoba, Ontario etc..
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