From Kipp W., Tacoma, Washington
I am writing this as I wish to tell your company how much I like my three month old Kimberly Stove. I first knew of this stove as my girlfriend and I spend a lot of time at the Dockton Park Marina on Vashon Island, Washington. While there we met a fellow who was inventing a wood stove for his boat. Being a person who has lived aboard for the last ten years on my 51 foot Fermosa sail boat built in Taiwan, we call the Chalupa, I was quite intrigued. What we first saw looked like a garbage can that got hit by the truck rather than emptied. The fellow, his wife and daughter were all living on this 30 foot Bayliner, and while I could tell that he had precious little boating experience, he did know about producing clean heat in a confined space. As I watched his adventure unfolding over the next year, this ugly little hand built stainless steel stove began taking a much more elegant appearance, while attaining a cleaner and longer burn each time I saw him. I knew that something was just plain different about this little stove, and although I did not tell him right away, I knew I had to have one.
In the third year of the journey I finally decided to approach the inventor about selling me one of his stoves. We made a deal and below are my thoughts on what it has done for my boat, and my life style.
My boats interior is mostly hand carved teak, granite counter tops, stained glass, and featured a stunningly beautiful but completely useless, and dangerous double door stainless wood burner with no windows to view the fire. It was poorly designed and installed, and it smoked out the cabin every time we tried to use it. Anything which might replace it HAD to be complete eye candy, and smoke free inside the boat. It also had to not annoy my neighbors by emitting wood smoke which would surely end up in their cabin. When we removed the old fireplace we found clear evidence that this unit, were it used much at all, would have surely burned our boat to the ground (water). Not only was the chimney un-safe, but the propane gas line was exposed to the outside of the chimney pipe……can you say BOOM? Fortunately the inventor had all the right information to help us install the Kimberly properly, and solve the gas line issue as well. We found him to really care about safety and had the experience to back it up.
We went a bit past a “standard installation” by incorporating a solid glazed sheet of light neutral colored granite with a pattern that just happens to resemble an old nautical map. Below the stove and in front of it we used Copper, and Brass. A stainless steel chimney with a really sharp looking heat shield was just the thing to finish off the pipe, and even has a 12 volt fan to extract heat from the flue.
Other than a couple incidences of a little smoke in the cabin, easily aired out in 10 minutes, this stove has me thrilled. Since it is my first wood burning appliance I did not know what to expect. The stove is easy to light, and requires little maintenance. Once every couple days I empty the ash bed into the ash pan, which gets emptied weekly. I did find that being lazy about this will cause an ash build up deep enough to cut off the primary air source, and then the fire will not operate well and is hard to start. Keeping it clean however is only a couple minutes a day, a couple days a week when in use all day and night. The best things I have experienced would be the following. No more condensation! this is huge, the dry heat dry’s up the boat and my bedding in not musty anymore. I find I run the sump pumps less than I used to, and it’s really cozy now. Last month the power went out due to an ice storm with temperatures down in the mid teens. This could have been a disaster, however we were warm, and secure on our floating home. I believe the inside temperature was 68 degrees F. when the temp outside was only 16.
I found that anytime I had a question I found an immediate answer with one phone call, or a return call promptly with needed information, I felt good at all points about doing business with these folks.
In closing I would like to condense my thoughts into a couple sentences. If anyone is looking for a small portable stove that is light in weight, built to last, performs incredibly well, and will protect your investment as well as your life (cold moist conditions are not good for humans or boats) this stove is worth every penny I paid for it. And in closing, If you are ever on the dock and see a pirate ship called the Chalupa, come and say hello. My name is Kipp Walter and I love to show off my Boat and my Kimberly!
Kipp W., 10-Year Veteran of the High Seas