New 2022: Project Keep Wardleys Sailor Warm and Dry

I used to be one of the first sailors up in the morning. Often at the crack of dawn. I would be there exchanging banter with fellow sailors across the anchorage in Piel harbour, often shivering clutching a cup of steaming hot tea, as the sun starts its long climb over Ingleborough (2372ft)— a truly wonderful sight.

Recently things have changed. Now I’m finding I’m often the last to wake, but when I do wake it is with a feeling of extreme cosiness. Another ten minutes, why not! Often one’s dreams are the most colourful, and most memorable at that time of the morning. Even the thought of a nice brew, or even to behold a beautiful sunny morning, sunrays flooding in through the portholes dancing on the varnished bulkhead. But I am still happy to stay put, and dream of what the day might bring.

What has happened you might ask? Well, the answer is something totally silent and non-power-consuming: it’s my recently fitted charcoal stove, which runs happily through the night keeping me nice and warm but more importantly dry.

Here is a pictorial view of how this happened:

Proud owner of a new BENGCO. Thanks Darren G. for you invaluable help in sourcing it.


This is where the charcoal goes. Not really much room. The original seal has broken. However, aluminium foil serves well as a substitute.
How to light: Remove all ash from previous (important). Fill with charcoal. Take off bottom unit. Physically remove the wick. Soak it in mentholated spirit (keep mine in a marmite pot is useful). Slot back in. Open vent. Light. Refit bottom unit. Wait till see orange glow. Close vent nearly shut.
Wardleys Sailor  professional design work. Must fit as low as possible. to suck the cold and damp. And  a long pipe is all the better for warming the boat.


It is still at the back of an envelope stage. The flash ‘H’ cap is still to be born.
Wardleys sailor Billy Whiz lends a helping hand.
Where to put it? Blend in with window. Can increase window length to cover if finally removed.
Ordered stainless steel from internet. Toying with new material in garage.
The stove didn’t come with a pipe or a through deck flange. Have to fabricate it myself. Here I’m offering up the parts. Must get the angle right!


Flange welded up. Deciding how long the pipe should protrude. What is aesthetically pleasing?
What is the right length. Here I decide to weld the pipe after installation on the boat. Must not scortch the deck!
The day arrived to fit into boat. Cutting and chopping into the original fixtures and fitting. It hurts!!
Finally fitted, but not yet welded fully.
View outside. Not yet welded fully.
View from inside. Now the pipe is welded,to the flange  trimmed off, and bolted into the deck.
Ash! The down side is more cleaning in the boat to do. Plan to put a metal hearth in place. Rain down the pipe may cause the ash into a paste if not removed immediately, which is what can be seen in the photo. Had to poke about with the ash pan removed. Normally the ash is all in the pan.
Keeping a brew warm. Works a treat! Also, airing and drying out some damp shoes and coat.
Hard to visually see working. But believe me there is some heat coming out of it!
View from jetty. Eight bolts. Plenty of sealant. Flange works well, little heat gets to the fibreglass, even when at full heat.

One thought on “New 2022: Project Keep Wardleys Sailor Warm and Dry”

  1. If you can find the space and suitable location, you’ll not regret installing a stove on your boat.

Leave a Reply