If Jeepers are worth anything, they get the most out of junk and/or making things adapt. I notice you are from upstate NY. It does get cold there. I've been there in the winter, and I also know that folks, not just Jeepers, in that area can make do with whatever is available. I'm a Texan, but I will go OT for the moment and compliment the upstate, NE yankees with a real "make do with what ya got" attitude. I've seen some real adaptations of "stuff" in the New England area that isn't apparent in the rest of the country. SO, back to your heater ---
Short story. I was fortunate enough to be very good friends with the son of the owner of the very last real blacksmith shop in Texas. This shop was torn down in the '60s, I think, but in the early '50s when I was in high school, I used to spend some time around this blacksmith shop - summer and winter.
In the winter it often got below freezing and sometimes even below zero, they fired up a "blacksmith made" heater. It was a series of "S" shaped duct tubing. Just light weight tubing that probably was designed as a cheap vent type tubing (6" to 8") for a big hot water heater. Real thin sheet metal tubes about 3 feet long connected with 2 90 degree angles so that it did a switch back forming a tight "S".
On top of 3 or 4 (don't remember for sure) horizontal tubes there was a bucket with a hole drilled in the bottom. A small tube of some kind was soldered into this hole. The tube ran from the bucket down to the bottm of the "S" shaped vent tubes. The bucket was filled with discarded, used motor oil. There was some kind of valve on the bottom of the bucket. A fire was started in the bottom of this stack of "S" shaped tubes, and the valve was set so that the motor oil dripped into the fire. Not a steady stream, just drips. The drips of oil went into the fire and ultimately were the only source of material for the fire to burn.
No fan, no electricity, just old oil burning in a controlled manner and exiting through an "SSS" type chimney. That thing produced a LOT of heat, and didn't cost anything to operate.
This system may be well known in some circles. It may be commonly used in colder climates. I may have seen the only one in the world. I DON'T KNOW! What I do know is that folks in the NE really are able to manage with whatever is available, and I know that this heater really put out a lot of heat and didn't cost anything to operate.
If this gives you some ideas, fine. That is the intention.