Heat from candle

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Loyalist Dave

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About forty years ago, A buddy came up with a loose unscientific formula that on a still night, a single candle burning in a 8 x 8 wall tent with flaps closed and bottom perimeter closed would warm the interior about 9 degrees over the exterior temperature. So if it was 40 degrees out and he wished the tent to be 67, he would need three candles burning continuously. Over the years, this seemed a reasonable guesstimation. Not that I wanted a bunch of candles lit, especially if sleeping, but one late fall rondy with wife and 2 small children and a freezing rain on a 10 x 10 wall tent, for an afternoon and evening we kept 6 candles burning and stayed above "see my breath" temps. ( I had a small wood stove by the next rondy). Just wondered if anyone had come up with a similar rule of thumb.

So the question is what type of candle?
There's a difference between a tea candle, a votive candle, and a stick candle,
and then with the stick candles, you have different burn rates depending on the diameter of the candle wick... ;)

You can be more efficient with a terra cotta planting pot, inverted on the ground, and place the candle inside, with a small opening under the rim to allow air inside. The candle light is thus reduced, making it easier to sleep, and the terra cotta is heated which then radiates heat. Just be sure the kids understand don't touch the pot as it's very hot. After the candle burns down the pottery continues to radiate heat for a while.

TENT HEATER.jpg


LD
 

zimmerstutzen

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About 45 years ago, there was a fellow that attended the weekend matches at Blue Ridge Rifles in PA. He put denatured alcohol in a kerosene lantern and lit the thing. I remember one frosty morning at a fall shoot and his tent flaps were open and the heat pouring out of his tent. I have always been afraid to even try that.
 
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So the question is what type of candle?
There's a difference between a tea candle, a votive candle, and a stick candle,
and then with the stick candles, you have different burn rates depending on the diameter of the candle wick... ;)

You can be more efficient with a terra cotta planting pot, inverted on the ground, and place the candle inside, with a small opening under the rim to allow air inside. The candle light is thus reduced, making it easier to sleep, and the terra cotta is heated which then radiates heat. Just be sure the kids understand don't touch the pot as it's very hot. After the candle burns down the pottery continues to radiate heat for a while.

View attachment 166215

LD
Great ideal would be good also in a cold deer blind, set between ones feet, Low tek, basically no smell ( unless you raid the wifes smelly candles)and small. Might have to give it a try this season if it gets cold enough. I WOULD THINK IF YOU ALSO USED THE SMALL SAUCER THAT THE POT SITS ON IT WOULD BE RATHER SAFE AS TO STARTING A FIRE AS THE CANDLE BURNS DOWN.👍
 
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My only measured experience was at one of our elk camps with my oldest son. Had an 8 hour burn candle in the emergency light small tubular glass and metal holder, about 12" off the flooring in our 10X16 tent. outside temp was 35f inside was 38f, measured about 3 times over the night. Not very scientific, but it seems to have kept the inside a little more joyful.
 

Loyalist Dave

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Great ideal would be good also in a cold deer blind, set between ones feet, Low tek, basically no smell ( unless you raid the wifes smelly candles)and small. Might have to give it a try this season if it gets cold enough. I WOULD THINK IF YOU ALSO USED THE SMALL SAUCER THAT THE POT SITS ON IT WOULD BE RATHER SAFE AS TO STARTING A FIRE AS THE CANDLE BURNS DOWN.👍
I wish it was my idea, but I saw it in an issue of Backwoodsman magazine..iirc.

LD
 
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I didn’t read every post (so forgive if this already mentioned) but I went to several arctic/cold weather survival schools in the military and a single candle will heat a “proper” one or two man shelter like a snow cave just fine. Can’t imagine it doing much in a tent like structure.
 

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So the question is what type of candle?
There's a difference between a tea candle, a votive candle, and a stick candle,
and then with the stick candles, you have different burn rates depending on the diameter of the candle wick... ;)

You can be more efficient with a terra cotta planting pot, inverted on the ground, and place the candle inside, with a small opening under the rim to allow air inside. The candle light is thus reduced, making it easier to sleep, and the terra cotta is heated which then radiates heat. Just be sure the kids understand don't touch the pot as it's very hot. After the candle burns down the pottery continues to radiate heat for a while.

View attachment 166215

LD
now I rely like that! where did you ever come up with that.?
 

Tom A Hawk

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I didn’t read every post (so forgive if this already mentioned) but I went to several arctic/cold weather survival schools in the military and a single candle will heat a “proper” one or two man shelter like a snow cave just fine. Can’t imagine it doing much in a tent like structure.
Regarding the snow cave - Eskimo families stay warm even without parkas in their igloo with the heat of an oil lamp. I've also read of a polite custom where visitors get to sleep next to the igloo owner's wife, for extra warmth....
 
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I have never experimented with candles however I have two Aladdin lamps that keep the living room comfortably warm when the outside temp dips to the low 40's. Not quite cold enough yet to light the wood stove but low enough to be chilly. The lamps have a mantle over the wick and a tall glass chimney. Their heat output is quite significant.

View attachment 166211

On the other hand, while sleeping in a tent during deer season, I had to get out of my sleeping bag every couple of hours to feed the stove in order to be comfortable.

View attachment 166212
Those are the best lamps. I need to re globe mine.
 
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I didn’t read every post (so forgive if this already mentioned) but I went to several arctic/cold weather survival schools in the military and a single candle will heat a “proper” one or two man shelter like a snow cave just fine. Can’t imagine it doing much in a tent like structure.
Agree. I did too. A single candle will warm up a small enclosed space enough to survive. A single candle or two won't do much in a larger tent.
 
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They work great, when we were doing mostly civil war events a few of them were in Oct. got right chilly, as the wife went along, one particular cold evening was at cedar creek it was windy and a light snow was falling, she was visiting a few of the other ladies and when she came back announced that the first Lts. tent was rather nice and warm as thats where the ladies holed up for there talk. Announced we are a getting a little buddy, used it at F&I Ft. Frederick eary spring, Ft.Loudon late Oct. early Nov. events a lot also. Drive in deer camp once the wall tent is up fire up the little buddy good deal there. I opted for a wood burner but as I thought about it agreed to the little buddy no waking up every 2 or 3 hours to chuck wood in it.
 
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If you get a good set of coals with wood going, right before you hit the sack, toss in a LARGE lump of real coal, then dampen it down. Usually will keep you going a good six hours before you need to stoke it again. Be sure to clean your stove pipes when you break things down as it tends to leave soot.
 
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Regarding the snow cave - Eskimo families stay warm even without parkas in their igloo with the heat of an oil lamp. I've also read of a polite custom where visitors get to sleep next to the igloo owner's wife, for extra warmth....
Yup, and refusal to accept such generous hospitality will get your skull split. This after she went to all the trouble of greasing herself all over with blubber to make herself more attractive. Read about Missionary in an Anthropology class who made that fatal faux pas. I always kept in the back of my mind that if offered a seal blubbered babe to never refuse :thumb:
 

zimmerstutzen

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Yup, and refusal to accept such generous hospitality will get your skull split. This after she went to all the trouble of greasing herself all over with blubber to make herself more attractive. Read about Missionary in an Anthropology class who made that fatal faux pas. I always kept in the back of my mind that if offered a seal blubbered babe to never refuse :thumb:
we must have had the same anthropology book in college. I remember something about that too. We had to watch an old black and white silent movie about the old Eskimo fellow and his family parts of it got a little risque and a Nun in the class went off the deep end over those scenes. Tried to rip the film out of the projector and kept repeating something in German about der Teufel (the devil)
 

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