Chris4943

Diesel Engine Delete

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35 minutes ago, El Boracho said:

Yes, one needs to have an eye on the temperature. At full rpm my Beta never gets over 80º C. Even in hot tropical seas. It might not be at full rated power because as @Steam Flyer correctly pointed out fuel consumption gives an indication. Although I would think the prop has to be well matched for that to be accurate. My consumption has never quite reached the datasheet maximum. 

I don't see how run time limits for power ratings make sense. Wear and temperature should be constant after the engine warms up (not a long time with a small diesel). So 12 hours or a hundred hours continuous shouldn't make a difference in lifetime.

On a long run the oil changes become a weekly thing. 150 hours, six days, two tanks of fuel. Kinda bewildering: "Didn't I just do this?" I suffer from a small sump because of clearance issues (fast flat hull bottom?). If you do them while sailing you don't waste any bar time in port...

Aside...

Just this week I thoroughly scrubbed out the diesel tank. It all started because of chasing a tiny air leak. By putting a bit of clear hose temporarily in the fuel line I was able to speed the investigation. Having the fuel very low in the tank triggered the issue. Turns out the ancient sealant holding the dip tube in the tank-top fitting had a air leak. Resulting in many tiny bubbles, which are not a big problem in themselves, but fuel lines empty of fuel after sitting for a while is an issue. Found a 2cm ball of algae-resin rolling around in the tank. No water. Scrubbing every surface with a plastic kitchen pot scrubber got a good cup of brown mush and resin sand out. Pretty happy about that. Dock mate has been struggling with fuel gunk for years. He cannot easily access his tank. Pathetic. I threatened to access his tank with my SawsAll in mere minutes if he didn't stop whinging. He has some irrational concern for fiberglass and furniture. I'm forever thankful that all my tanks can be out on the pier in less than an hour if necessary. Yacht designers need to gat a clue. Today the water tanks come out for cleaning and painting their lockers. The first time I cleaned the water tanks I found a screwdriver in one...not mine...sheesh!

 

I scrubbed out the 2 fuel tanks in a SC 50. FULL of algae. I need to get around to it on the current ride but I sucked all the fuel out for a rating measurement last weekend, and only 2 small little black dots came out in 14 gallons of fuel. I suppose the algae could've adhered to the bottom of the tank.

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2 minutes ago, Raz'r said:

I scrubbed out the 2 fuel tanks in a SC 50. FULL of algae. I need to get around to it on the current ride but I sucked all the fuel out for a rating measurement last weekend, and only 2 small little black dots came out in 14 gallons of fuel. I suppose the algae could've adhered to the bottom of the tank.

Yeah, 99% of my algae was attached to the tank bottom. As a datapoint: no amount of draining would have dislodged it. A fuel cleaning service might have if they used a serious pressure washer like thingy with articulating reach (does that even exist?). Circulating fuel would have done nothing. The resinous sand-like stuff requires scrubbing. But it is less of a clog hazard being fine and easily filtered. My filters were never more than slightly soiled. Last cleaned ten years ago.

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How often are people cleaning their tanks? I replaced my fuel gauge and noticed a couple spots in there. I really don't want to have to pull this damn tank out.

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9 minutes ago, climenuts said:

How often are people cleaning their tanks? I replaced my fuel gauge and noticed a couple spots in there. I really don't want to have to pull this damn tank out.

Depends on everything. Temperature, humidity, usage, additives, and your ability to cope with serious propulsion failure at an always inopportune time. There are always spots in there. Most are hard and well attached. The whispy leafy black/green stuff is what you don't want any of. It is light enough to churn up to the pickup tube level and once there either stick to the end, stick inside, or (best) clog the filter.

If you saw mostly clean metal thru non-cloudy fuel in the lowers area near the pickup I'd say you are good for a few more years. Mine was pretty cruddy yet I never saw anything scary in the filter even after a very rough Pacific crossing.

Was interesting to find I have 4 gallons (8 hours) of unusable fuel below the pickup.

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4 hours ago, El Boracho said:

Yeah, 99% of my algae was attached to the tank bottom. As a datapoint: no amount of draining would have dislodged it.

Alcohol might be worth a try. That's what eventually cut through the gunk in two tanks that I cleaned. Not sure if alcohol is even remotely safe for hoses, rubber bits or engines. I disconnected all of those before I cleaned the tanks.

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We use a pretty serious (several multiples of what is recommended) dose of algaecide in our commercial fishing boats on each tank fill, which is almost daily in the fishing seasons. Can't remember the product name, will try next time I'm on the boat, but it's mainly intended for generator fuel tanks. We've never had a problem with algae, and these tanks get mixed up pretty good when below half-full and slamming at 18 kts into a headsea for a few hours. Of course, that might actually help with keeping them cleaned.

 

Incidentally, we have a de-rated 6.7 L Cummins making ~400 powering the boat. 60% engine load at 70% throttle and 2,200 RPM cruising for our heavy-ass 30' tuna boat. The same block can do way more work (diesel guys use a similar automobile version and get 1000+ HP out of it) and the non-continuous duty versions put out crazy power.

 

Interesting how algae can live in a mostly anaerobic, sunless, hydrocarbon environment. This is particularly cool if this means organisms can adapt to the conditions of Titan or something, a cold hydrocarbon moon too far distant from the sun to get much light...

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It isn’t difficult really. Use a fuel filter funnel to fill up. Keep the tank as full as possible to limit condensation. Use a biocide. 

 

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cleaned my tank out if the boat by sloshing around hotwater and detergent plus alcohol then some  pump gas; until all the black snot and discolouration was gone. 

Only realised i had a problem after a hard 6 hour beat that stirred it all up, then the motor died entering a channel!

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2 hours ago, Miffy said:

It isn’t difficult really. Use a fuel filter funnel to fill up. Keep the tank as full as possible to limit condensation. Use a biocide. 

 

 

2 hours ago, toad said:

cleaned my tank out if the boat by sloshing around hotwater and detergent plus alcohol then some  pump gas; until all the black snot and discolouration was gone. 

Only realised i had a problem after a hard 6 hour beat that stirred it all up, then the motor died entering a channel!

And have spare filters

And know how to change them with as little fuss & muss as possible. And reprime the engine afterward, if necessary.

I don't know why so many engine installations have unsuitable filters in an impossible place, but it's something to give serious consideration to.

FB- Doug

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5 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

 

And have spare filters

And know how to change them with as little fuss & muss as possible. And reprime the engine afterward, if necessary.

I don't know why so many engine installations have unsuitable filters in an impossible place, but it's something to give serious consideration to.

FB- Doug

There’s also some heavy cruiser systems that have enough tankage to really warrant a fuel polisher that runs continuously when the diesel fuel pump is on - it is one thing to have 80 liters; but then you’re 200-400 liters range that fuel tank is going to be empty a lot and probably also fairly old fuel. 

But it seems attention to detail is really what separates certain production yards from others. 

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3 hours ago, Commercial Boater said:

Interesting how algae can live in a mostly anaerobic, sunless, hydrocarbon environment. This is particularly cool if this means organisms can adapt to the conditions of Titan or something, a cold hydrocarbon moon too far distant from the sun to get much light...

Agreed.  I worked in a lab once that kept a continuously topped up 500 liter plastic tank full of distilled water in a dimly lit 4 degree C cool room.  The little buggers even grew in that, where they got their nutrition from I have no idea.

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18 hours ago, Sailabout said:

ah....I dont think so as no standard to measure electric motors afaik hence all the weird comparisons.
Try to find an electric motors torque curve from a dyno so you can compare apples to apples and even then what standards were used.

Yeah no. 
We've rehashed this so many times in this thread already.

It doesn't matter if the electric motor can put out 300 million lb/ft of Torque at lets say 100rpm if the propeller only requires 20lb/ft to turn at that speed, the fact the motor could produce more is irrelevant in this application.

The prop will be sized to make use of the engines rated output, which invariably means that at lower speeds the engine is limited by the RPM the operator chooses, no the maximum output of the engine at that particular rpm.

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FYI - Biobor is great for preventing algae. If you already have some, killing it just converts a live algae mess to a dead algae mess. The fuel cleaner trucks use much higher pressure for cleaning than anything you can do on your own, they are IMHO good thing every now and then.

Also note algae likes the fuel/water interface, I think it lives in water and eats fuel, so keep water out. Also note magnets don't kill algae or MRI machines would kill people :rolleyes:

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4 hours ago, MiddayGun said:

Yeah no. 
We've rehashed this so many times in this thread already.

It doesn't matter if the electric motor can put out 300 million lb/ft of Torque at lets say 100rpm if the propeller only requires 20lb/ft to turn at that speed, the fact the motor could produce more is irrelevant in this application.

The prop will be sized to make use of the engines rated output, which invariably means that at lower speeds the engine is limited by the RPM the operator chooses, no the maximum output of the engine at that particular rpm.

yes agreed th isseu to getting an elec motor that you need, show me a rated output for an electric motor, they just say kw, so is that electrical consumption or what?

I know for large stuff you can get rpm and  torque data

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Re algae:

Top up diesel prior to winterizing. It prevents condensation buildup which can lead to water in the tank.

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5 hours ago, Sailabout said:

yes agreed th isseu to getting an elec motor that you need, show me a rated output for an electric motor, they just say kw, so is that electrical consumption or what?

I know for large stuff you can get rpm and  torque data

Generally the rated mechanical output.
If it doesn't give the input details you can work backwards from the output if you know the efficiency & voltage to get roughly the input current.
 

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29 minutes ago, MiddayGun said:

Generally the rated mechanical output.
If it doesn't give the input details you can work backwards from the output if you know the efficiency & voltage to get roughly the input current.
 

For DC motors the basic datasheet gives enough info to figure out everything because the torque, speed, current, voltage, and resistance tell the whole story. That is why some of us can laugh when the manufacturers and moonbeams lie about the motor performance....kinda like my “2 hp!” vacuum....

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1 hour ago, El Boracho said:

For DC motors the basic datasheet gives enough info to figure out everything because the torque, speed, current, voltage, and resistance tell the whole story. That is why some of us can laugh when the manufacturers and moonbeams lie about the motor performance....kinda like my “2 hp!” vacuum....

A vacuum cleaner that runs on hay?

That'd be cool, but the loss of efficiency would be annoying... you'd lose to much time with it, cleaning up after itself

- DSK

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10 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

A vacuum cleaner that runs on hay?

That'd be cool, but the loss of efficiency would be annoying... you'd lose to much time with it, cleaning up after itself

- DSK

Yup. Smelly too. I looked again. The vacuum says 6 HP! Imagine that...5 kW (40 A) thru a skinny power cord. It’s a miracle!

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6 hours ago, MiddayGun said:

Generally the rated mechanical output.
If it doesn't give the input details you can work backwards from the output if you know the efficiency & voltage to get roughly the input current.
 

its the output that we need

kw tells you not much its the torque that turns the prop and at x rpm is the kw

if the motor does have flat torque curve then just advertise the torque

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6 hours ago, Sailabout said:

its the output that we need

kw tells you not much its the torque that turns the prop and at x rpm is the kw

if the motor does have flat torque curve then just advertise the torque

https://www.electriccarpartscompany.com/impulse-9-ev-dc-motor

Plenty of spec sheets for these motors.

I suspect if a manufacturer of electric motors for boats refuses to give out the torque curve and says they have to specify it all for you, then its because the specs of the motor probably don't support the claims they make about it.

Example the Oceanvolt FAQ says.

Quote

A 10kW Oceanvolt electric motor easily outperforms and is more powerful than a 30hp diesel engine.  Typically, boat max speed will be somewhat lower (0.5 - 1.0 kn) that with a comparable diesel engine, but at the same time the boat will maintain the speed better in heavy seas and headwind due to higher torque.

Which is playing with the truth a little, if you changed the prop and the gearing on the diesel motor then it would also be 1 knot slower but better at plugging into a head sea, they can spec for that electric wise because they know that no one is using it to travel any distance.
Come to think of it I can't imagine many boats having the battery bank to plug into a head sea for any length of time.

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1 hour ago, MiddayGun said:

https://www.electriccarpartscompany.com/impulse-9-ev-dc-motor

Plenty of spec sheets for these motors.

I suspect if a manufacturer of electric motors for boats refuses to give out the torque curve and says they have to specify it all for you, then its because the specs of the motor probably don't support the claims they make about it.

Example the Oceanvolt FAQ says.

Which is playing with the truth a little, if you changed the prop and the gearing on the diesel motor then it would also be 1 knot slower but better at plugging into a head sea, they can spec for that electric wise because they know that no one is using it to travel any distance.
Come to think of it I can't imagine many boats having the battery bank to plug into a head sea for any length of time.

Lucky to manage 15 minutes at full current I'd say. Something else they don't like to mention.

Funny thing about these discussions - they kind of reinforce the desirability of a controllable pitch prop setup, which AFAIK nobody at all is making or offering in small sizes any more.

FKT

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2 hours ago, MiddayGun said:

https://www.electriccarpartscompany.com/impulse-9-ev-dc-motor

Plenty of spec sheets for these motors.

I suspect if a manufacturer of electric motors for boats refuses to give out the torque curve and says they have to specify it all for you, then its because the specs of the motor probably don't support the claims they make about it.

Example the Oceanvolt FAQ says.

Which is playing with the truth a little, if you changed the prop and the gearing on the diesel motor then it would also be 1 knot slower but better at plugging into a head sea, they can spec for that electric wise because they know that no one is using it to travel any distance.
Come to think of it I can't imagine many boats having the battery bank to plug into a head sea for any length of time.

like about none for any appreciable lenght of time! Its all about storage and to date you just cant beat diesel in a yacht.

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The so called electrical to mechanical conversion has losses. But do not forget that a diesel engine transmission/reduction gears also have significant  losses. So the difference may not be as large as mentioned. Also on the plus side, en electric motor is much lighter, probably requires a  shorter shaft/simpler bearing which contributes to saving fuel.

A diesel engine occupies a lot of space where space is usually at minimum at the rear end. On the other hand you can locate a generator basically anywhere. If I were you I wouldnt worry about increased consumption. But worry about everything else mentioned.

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50 minutes ago, Omer said:

The so called electrical to mechanical conversion has losses. But do not forget that a diesel engine transmission/reduction gears also have significant  losses. So the difference may not be as large as mentioned. Also on the plus side, en electric motor is much lighter, probably requires a  shorter shaft/simpler bearing which contributes to saving fuel.

A diesel engine occupies a lot of space where space is usually at minimum at the rear end. On the other hand you can locate a generator basically anywhere. If I were you I wouldnt worry about increased consumption. But worry about everything else mentioned.

There is NO WAY IN THE WORLD that an electric motor of 20HP is going to mass less than an equivalent transmission bolted to the back of the engine.

And that's totally ignoring the generator head that's bolted to the diesel to make the electricity in the first place.

I actually have and run a 25HP 415V 3 phase motor (air compressor) and have various other motors around the 7.5HP range, plus a variety of marine gearboxes so I do have a few clues.

Happy to be wrong though, but you're going to have to post actual makes, HP and mass of the components to convince me.

Locating the generator in a better spot could be a plus, *if* the boat was big enough to have a better spot to put it. However by the same logic you could run a hydraulic drive system. Provided you liked hot hydraulic oil everywhere when (not if) a component fails, and are happy listening to the horrible whine from the pump/motor. Personally I think that, like diesel-electric drives, the downside is greater than the purported advantages.

FKT

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Never met a hydraulic drive that couldn't be made to fail by turning the ignition key,  sometimes on a good day it might last until put into gear.

Not a fan of diesel electric in anything lighter than about 500 tons though.

Looks like it's diesel on a shaft for a while yet.

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2 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

There is NO WAY IN THE WORLD that an electric motor of 20HP is going to mass less than an equivalent transmission bolted to the back of the engine.

And that's totally ignoring the generator head that's bolted to the diesel to make the electricity in the first place.

I actually have and run a 25HP 415V 3 phase motor (air compressor) and have various other motors around the 7.5HP range, plus a variety of marine gearboxes so I do have a few clues.

Happy to be wrong though, but you're going to have to post actual makes, HP and mass of the components to convince me.

Locating the generator in a better spot could be a plus, *if* the boat was big enough to have a better spot to put it. However by the same logic you could run a hydraulic drive system. Provided you liked hot hydraulic oil everywhere when (not if) a component fails, and are happy listening to the horrible whine from the pump/motor. Personally I think that, like diesel-electric drives, the downside is greater than the purported advantages.

FKT

I did not mean the motor would be lighter than the transmission alone. I intended to say the electric  motor would be significantly lighter than the diesel engine, transmission, starting motor, clutch, starting battery etc, etc put together.  Generator head included in the Gen Set is not ignored in the sense that the owner desires to have a substantial generator anyway. So on one side of the scale you have one  complete Diesel Gen Set , one electric  motor and cabling etc. On the other side of the scale you have two Diesel engines each with a generator head plus  transmission, shafting, bearings, separate starting battery etc. I guess the former package would easily be lighter by a few hundred Lbs. 

One other benefit of the electric propulsion not mentioned  is that it is virtually vibration free and noise free. Generators are usually built or sound proofed  to be as quiet as possible. Imagine driving your boat in dead calm in the middle of the night for hours on end where two diesel engines running at two different rpms  creating all sorts of harmonics acoustic or mechanical. Then imagine  switching  off  the driving Diesel and be  left with the subdued whine of the generator only.

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lol now you’re just making shit up. 

Energy is energy. If you’re powering a boat to 5 knots with a Diesel engine vs using a Diesel engine to produce electrical power for an electric motor to power a boat to 5 knots - it won’t be more efficient, it won’t be more green. Every conversion step you add to the system decreases the energy efficiency. 

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19 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

A vacuum cleaner that runs on hay?

That'd be cool, but the loss of efficiency would be annoying... you'd lose to much time with it, cleaning up after itself

- DSK

Cleans carpets by SUCTION!

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57 minutes ago, Miffy said:

lol now you’re just making shit up. 

Energy is energy. If you’re powering a boat to 5 knots with a Diesel engine vs using a Diesel engine to produce electrical power for an electric motor to power a boat to 5 knots - it won’t be more efficient, it won’t be more green. Every conversion step you add to the system decreases the energy efficiency. 

No body said it will be more efficient. But after deducting transmission losses  and adding  weight reduction gains  possibly  the margin shall be ignorable. 

I love people who can talk with numbers. Perhaps you can tell us what the brake horsepower a Diesel engine is quoted as tested on a dynamometer versus the actual shaft output. 

Meaning what are the percentage mechanical  transmission losses  vs  energy conversion  losses.Then we can compare it without making any shit.

By the way, we are not talking about a megawatt power plant running 7x24 , where one percent efficiency is paramount between success and failure. How much fuel one guy can consume on a cruising boat even if he motored head on across the  North Atlantic in winter. The money he would pay in excess would be far less than what he would pay in any other means :-)

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Both Volvo and Yanmar freely provide hp and torque numbers for both engine and at the stern/shaft/sail drive. 

I don’t really need to prove anything since I’m not the one advocating for an expensive system to duplicate an existing function that is the norm. The market speaks for itself shrug - re NVH, if your diesel is too loud, insulate the engine box properly. If the purr bothers you that much, the 2 cylinder genset is not going to be better. 

I don’t get it with you guys who become evangelicals - if it is so good, why don’t you do it and show the world. 

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Any kind of diesel-electric drive for a common pleasure boat is the pinnacle of stupidity. Battery-electric at present has some very narrow application. In the distant future it may attain greater relevancy. Same with hydrogen.

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Engine output is not given at the transmission or sail drive, it's at the flywheel. However a typical marine gearbox has about 2% losses so its pretty negligible.

Generator making electricity is around 92% efficient. Cable losses in AC are likely 1%. VFD or similar throttle is about 95% for a good one. Electric motor back to turning the shaft is 92-96%.  So total losses say 0.92 x 0.99 x  0.95 x 0.93 = 0.80 or 20% losses from the generator to the shaft. And that's using equipment with the highest efficiency.

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On 7/10/2020 at 4:07 AM, Zonker said:

Sailing Uma has 12 x 100 A.hr li-ion batteries. About $12k at retail pricing. I can buy a nice diesel for that price. And that does not include an electric motor, controller or cabling. 

1200 A. Hr of battery is ~10 KW.hr of capacity. So I can motor at 5 KW (7 hp) for 2 hours until the battery is dead. If very limited range is ok with you and you're a "real sailor" then sounds great. 

I'm their test video they say they can motor at 6.5 knots for 1 hour then thd battery is dead. Obviously if they motor at 3 knots they can probably motor for 6 hours or more. 

 

Hey Zonker, I recognize that you have probably forgotten more than I know about boats;

But...

I wanted to comment on this statement about Lithium, specifically LiFePO4 batteries and the cost being $12,000 usd. I don't see how we need to go to such an extreme price quote. I see that they Uma visted over 20 different countries while sailing about 18,000 miles on a ships battery bank of 125 amp-hrs at 48VDC. If we look at this companies price seen here: http://store.evtv.me/proddetail.php?prod=ca100fi  The amp-hr equivalent bank would be comprised of 16 of these cells (remember Lithium chemistry can be cycled routinely to  an 80% DOD which the lead acid bank they were using starts pale after routine cycling below 50% DOD)  The cost of an electrically equivalent bank of batteries in Lithium would actually only cost $2,160 for brand new Lithium cells.... Only 18% of the cost you have suggested.

I think we all need to pull back and allow these folks - who are on the blunt cutting edge  - to develop Lithium battery drives for the rest us us who have super light weight and efficient sailing boats. These folks don't even have what I would describe as a light weight cruiser and they are hanging in there and absolutely loving their electric drive thru over 20 different countries, an Atlantic crossing, and more than 18,000 miles of sailing. Much of it at relatively high latitude where the going is not so easy.    If they are "loving it" ... We all need to pay more attention and just listen.

 

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7 minutes ago, 2flit said:

The amp-hr equivalent bank would be comprised of 16 of these cells

Parts is parts. Similar to how a short block is cheaper than a complete engine?

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6 minutes ago, weightless said:

Parts is parts. Similar to how a short block is cheaper than a complete engine?

Weightless, This is parts for parts comparison,

Not short versus ,long-block?

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Yes but the lead acid bank they had gave them minimal range. They didn't hesitate to increase it when offered cheap/free Li-ion. So that suggests that the tiny bank was insufficient for their needs or they would have just put in 100 or 200 A.hr of new batteries.

I was calculating the cost of what they currently have in Li-Ion which still only gives them 1 hour at full power.

Lin and Larry Pardey visited even more countries on 2 boats with no engine. Doesn't mean that I want to emulate them either. Great that the Uma folks like their electric system - I have no problem with that. What I don't like is folks that try to say its a solution for the majority of us when there are better alternatives in conventional diesels.

On the other hand if I could afford a Tesla model 3 I would buy it in a heartbeat. Plenty of range for even extended road trips with minor inconvenience of a few longer charging stops. I would understand the limitations and be happy with them.

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2 minutes ago, Zonker said:

Yes but the lead acid bank they had gave them minimal range. They didn't hesitate to increase it when offered cheap/free Li-ion. So that suggests that the tiny bank was insufficient for their needs or they would have just put in 100 or 200 A.hr of new batteries.

I was calculating the cost of what they currently have in Li-Ion which still only gives them 1 hour at full power.

Lin and Larry Pardey visited even more countries on 2 boats with no engine. Doesn't mean that I want to emulate them either. Great that the Uma folks like their electric system - I have no problem with that. What I don't like is folks that try to say its a solution for the majority of us when there are better alternatives in conventional diesels.

On the other hand if I could afford a Tesla model 3 I would buy it in a heartbeat. Plenty of range for even extended road trips with minor inconvenience of a few longer charging stops. I would understand the limitations and be happy with them.

I’d like to see the production energy/lifetime emission of a diesel boat that gets used 500 hours a year vs 2 tons of lithium batteries... 

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10 minutes ago, 2flit said:

Weightless, This is parts for parts comparison,

Not short versus ,long-block?

I don't think it is. You haven't included the costs of making a complete, safe battery. You'll need a lot more parts and if you want a complete system that is proven and supported you'll need to pay for that.

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Yeah I've never fully understood the environmental drawbacks of mining Li but more importantly the Cobalt which is part of battery packs.

A typical sailboat diesel is used about 100-200 hours / year. Even cruising full time we used ~500 hrs/year though I think that was at the low end of what is typical.

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6 minutes ago, weightless said:

I don't think it is. You haven't included the costs of making a complete, safe battery. You'll need a lot more parts and if you want a complete system that is proven and supported you'll need to pay for that.

I'll weigh in on this one and say this is not true.

The only thing you need to add to the LiFePO4 battery bank I suggested is $135 of the vibration tolerant battery straps.

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To me, the economics and environmental gains of ~100 mile electric cars on a clean grid with planned infrastructure for recycling makes sense. 
 

But for boats? You need to have a specific use case like daily used club boat/sailing school-charter that could make the short range economics and emission gains make sense. 

But for cruising? Just screams “I can always count on someone paying for my batteries and if I lose my rig? YOLO someone will tow me in or get me home”

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1 minute ago, 2flit said:

I'll weigh in on this one and say this is not true.

The only thing you need to add to the LiFePO4 battery bank I suggested is $135 of the vibration tolerant battery straps.

How do you manage the battery from over charging? Voltage balancing? Alternator overheating?

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where’s battery power jesus when you need him?

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12 minutes ago, weightless said:

I don't think it is. You haven't included the costs of making a complete, safe battery. You'll need a lot more parts and if you want a complete system that is proven and supported you'll need to pay for that.

Hey Weightless, I was comparing only the battery bank alone;  which is exactly what Zonker was referring to when he said it cost $12,000 for Lithium. 

It's obvious that there are lots of other parts in both diesel Engine and Electric drive systems. I am only referring to the battery bank cost being only 18% of what was quoted by Zonker. And this is for even a bit more effective capacity than these folks used for several years of cruising thru over 20 countries, 18,000+ miles, an Atlantic crossing, and some high latitude sailing.

I don't really care  - that if they were offered 'free' batteries  - that they took as many as they could fit in their hull. If I was offered 'free money' I'd fill up my bank account too. The point is; They were ecstatically happy with the 125 amp-hr 48vdc bank for all these miles.  And please... lets stop referring to the Pardey's exploits because they have no bearring on a boat that can motor in and out of narrow passes, marinas, difficult anchoring situations, and lots of other applications. This is not Seraffin out there with no motor and allot of boat handling skill sailing up to a slip or dock. Really it's not comparable.

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5 minutes ago, 2flit said:

Hey Weightless, I was comparing only the battery bank alone;  which is exactly what Zonker was referring to when he said it cost $12,000 for Lithium. 

... I am only referring to the battery bank cost being only 18% of what was quoted by Zonker....

I can't speak for Zonker but for me the cost of the cells is less than the cost of what I think of as the battery bank. Apologies if I'm just confusing the issue.

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1 hour ago, Zonker said:

Yeah I've never fully understood the environmental drawbacks of mining Li but more importantly the Cobalt which is part of battery packs.

A typical sailboat diesel is used about 100-200 hours / year. Even cruising full time we used ~500 hrs/year though I think that was at the low end of what is typical.

Yes, cruising for us is 200-500 hours per year, depending on harbor nightlife. 80% of it accumulated in long legs thru doldrums. Doldrums oddly lacking SuperCharger stations, btw.

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1 hour ago, El Boracho said:

Yes, cruising for us is 200-500 hours per year, depending on harbor nightlife. 80% of it accumulated in long legs thru doldrums. Doldrums oddly lacking SuperCharger stations, btw.

Similar ballpark for the sum of the hours on two engines. Usually run one easy in the calms and for charging but both for anchoring and docking.

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Well 2flit - what sort of range under power would you be happy with using battery power?

I was comparing them to the Pardeys because I think they are similar outliers in how much range under power they have (the Pardeys are true outliers) .Some sailors aren't happy unless they can power 500 miles with diesel and some will live with 200 because they have a small boat with limited tankage. Uma lived with < 30 minutes of powering with lead-acid.

To say they were ecstatically happy with their lead acid bank is to really overstate things. I think they understood the limitations and sailed within them. "It's almost flat calm today, maybe 2 knots of wind, and our destination is 30 miles upwind. Oh well we'll wait for tomorrow because we can't motor there and it will take 20 hours under sail" 

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Zonker, 

I commented on your reference to Uma's battery bank being $12,000 (not on range or on the suitability of electric drive on my or any other boats)?    Please don't paint my words with such a wide brush that it turns my simple statement into something it is not.

The battery bank that Uma happily used  for several years would barely  cost 18% of your quoted price. I think this is relevant ,and needed to be pointed out.  That LiFePO4 batteries  ( Miffy please note: not Cobalt-Lithium) are not that expensive in the application and way in which this interesting couple uses THEIR boat.

  I am talking about Uma being happy.  Here is a quote from their most recent entry on the subject "And the answer to our most asked question is YES, we still love our electric motor!" Their emphasis not mine.`

I wrote and want to re-emphasize:  "I think we all need to pull back and allow these folks - who are on the blunt cutting edge  - to develop Lithium battery drives for the rest us us who have super light weight and efficient sailing boats. These folks don't even have what I would describe as a light weight cruiser and they are hanging in there and absolutely loving their electric drive thru over 20 different countries, an Atlantic crossing, and more than 18,000 miles of sailing. Much of it at relatively high latitude where the going is not so easy.    If they are "loving it" ... We all need to pay more attention and just listen."

 

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2 hours ago, 2flit said:

I wrote and want to re-emphasize:  "I think we all need to pull back and allow these folks - who are on the blunt cutting edge  - to develop Lithium battery drives for the rest us us who have super light weight and efficient sailing boats. These folks don't even have what I would describe as a light weight cruiser and they are hanging in there and absolutely loving their electric drive thru over 20 different countries, an Atlantic crossing, and more than 18,000 miles of sailing. Much of it at relatively high latitude where the going is not so easy.    If they are "loving it" ... We all need to pay more attention and just listen."

No, I really don't. I don't give a flying fuck if they love their system, good for them, but if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant. They can play with drive systems and batteries to their hearts content, the fact is that they have no significant range under power and absent a *major* breakthrough in battery tech, this isn't changing any time soon.

So they love their system, so what. Kevin of 'How to sail oceans' loves his totally unpowered boat too. Funny thing is, he has only maybe 30 miles less range but zero expense at all.

FKT

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21 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

Funny thing about these discussions - they kind of reinforce the desirability of a controllable pitch prop setup, which AFAIK nobody at all is making or offering in small sizes any more.

Oceanvolt. 8k€ vs. regular sail drive.

29 minutes ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

No, I really don't. I don't give a flying fuck if they love their system, good for them, but if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant. They can play with drive systems and batteries to their hearts content, the fact is that they have no significant range under power and absent a *major* breakthrough in battery tech, this isn't changing any time soon.

So they love their system, so what. Kevin of 'How to sail oceans' loves his totally unpowered boat too. Funny thing is, he has only maybe 30 miles less range but zero expense at all.

FKT

Take a chill pill. We are discussing under the topic of diesel engine delete and as far as I know, nobody is saying that _you_ should delete _your_ diesel. There are a lot of places where pure electric just won't cut it, but imho that is not reason to smack electric altogether as there is places where it will work. Should we get rid of masts and sails as they make it impossible to go under some, even most, bridges and it is nearly impossible to sail in canals?

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5 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

No, I really don't. I don't give a flying fuck if they love their system, good for them, but if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant. They can play with drive systems and batteries to their hearts content, the fact is that they have no significant range under power and absent a *major* breakthrough in battery tech, this isn't changing any time soon.

So they love their system, so what. Kevin of 'How to sail oceans' loves his totally unpowered boat too. Funny thing is, he has only maybe 30 miles less range but zero expense at all.

FKT

I love gliders too, but when it is sunrise in Maryland and I need to be in the Bahamas before the sun sets, I cough up for a full tank of 100 octane ;)

* note the electric boat people seem to not have jobs, which seems to inform their worldview that being 50 miles from home and winds of 0 knots is not an issue, they'll wait for a breeze for as long as it takes.

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55 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:
6 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

No, I really don't. I don't give a flying fuck if they love their system, good for them, but if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant. They can play with drive systems and batteries to their hearts content, the fact is that they have no significant range under power and absent a *major* breakthrough in battery tech, this isn't changing any time soon.

So they love their system, so what. Kevin of 'How to sail oceans' loves his totally unpowered boat too. Funny thing is, he has only maybe 30 miles less range but zero expense at all.

FKT

I love gliders too, but when it is sunrise in Maryland and I need to be in the Bahamas before the sun sets, I cough up for a full tank of 100 octane ;)

* note the electric boat people seem to not have jobs, which seems to inform their worldview that being 50 miles from home and winds of 0 knots is not an issue, they'll wait for a breeze for as long as it takes.

Patience is a virtue  ;)

Another funny thing is, the same people usually seem resistant to boat properties that would give good light-air performance.

However I think there could be some virtue in an electric drive. When you consider the overlap between electricity needs, generation, and power application, a multi-tasking system could save on overall effectiveness even if losing some efficiency in some functions. However batteries are still far heavier and more bulky for the same stored energy as diesel fuel, that's a big big hurdle. Solar and wind generators still can only provide a trickle of power compared to propulsion needs.

FB- Doug

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5 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

Patience is a virtue  ;)

Another funny thing is, the same people usually seem resistant to boat properties that would give good light-air performance.

However I think there could be some virtue in an electric drive. When you consider the overlap between electricity needs, generation, and power application, a multi-tasking system could save on overall effectiveness even if losing some efficiency in some functions. However batteries are still far heavier and more bulky for the same stored energy as diesel fuel, that's a big big hurdle. Solar and wind generators still can only provide a trickle of power compared to propulsion needs.

FB- Doug

Then you circle back to diesel-electric drive and all the reason it gets used - or not- on ships and then you realize your version will be a one-off experiment and then you decide if you like science experiments or not.

I suspect one day someone will make a really nice off-the-shelf unit. That day is not today.

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21 hours ago, Zonker said:

Engine output is not given at the transmission or sail drive, it's at the flywheel. However a typical marine gearbox has about 2% losses so its pretty negligible.

Generator making electricity is around 92% efficient. Cable losses in AC are likely 1%. VFD or similar throttle is about 95% for a good one. Electric motor back to turning the shaft is 92-96%.  So total losses say 0.92 x 0.99 x  0.95 x 0.93 = 0.80 or 20% losses from the generator to the shaft. And that's using equipment with the highest efficiency.

The numbers seem about right to me but In real life not many yachts cross the doldrums. Typically marine engines spend sizable part of their operating lives barely above tickover with short bursts of power, some even get used to recharge batteries. Thus many diesel engines are often barely loaded whereas they are designed to run at 2400rpm turning a shaft with a propeller at the end. Electric efficiency is more or less constant whatever the load, when you ask nothing, consumption is nil!

Crossing the English channel under power is something I have done may be twice in 30 years, one crossing is say 24 hours at 1.5 l/hour or 36 liter of diesel, with the diesel electric system 36/0.8=45. I can't believe that these 9 litres of diesel economy per crossing are worth it considering that most of the diesel burnt by the motor will be by 1 litre shots faffing around harbours and their entrance while the engine is very inefficient. If were to have an hybrid system, I would shoot for 30 minutes at cruising speed under batteries and a generator just big enough to keep the boat going at 5 knots which would be much smaller than the engine needed to handle the boat. I am not convinced that I am ready to live with the extra complexity and having to carry and service a diesel generator negates in part the advantages of electric drive but the efficiency argument would not apply to me as I don't have very often the opportunity to run the diesel engine close to its peak efficiency.

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11 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

No, I really don't. I don't give a flying fuck if they love their system, good for them, but if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant. They can play with drive systems and batteries to their hearts content, the fact is that they have no significant range under power and absent a *major* breakthrough in battery tech, this isn't changing any time soon.

So they love their system, so what. Kevin of 'How to sail oceans' loves his totally unpowered boat too. Funny thing is, he has only maybe 30 miles less range but zero expense at all.

FKT

OK..,. So I know it's Sailing Anarchy I'm on here; and it's all Miss Congeniality.  But what the hey..... Mr. Tasmanian Dare Devil, AKA Fah Kiew Tu" you have all the subtlety of a D-8 Dozer with brush hooks on running thru the neighbors garden. I have to say that the SA moniker you have chosen is rancidly apt. I get where you are coming from but really please NO  ONE  here is trying to "suit your needs" ;..... and statement "if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant" ...  ! ! !

It’s clear why you are on this thread from this comment way over yonder in the PA side of this group....,.

 

FuckAllYou.png

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3 hours ago, 2flit said:

OK..,. So I know it's Sailing Anarchy I'm on here; and it's all Miss Congeniality.  But what the hey..... Mr. Tasmanian Dare Devil, AKA Fah Kiew Tu" you have all the subtlety of a D-8 Dozer with brush hooks on running thru the neighbors garden. I have to say that the SA moniker you have chosen is rancidly apt. I get where you are coming from but really please NO  ONE  here is trying to "suit your needs" ;..... and statement "if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant" ...  ! ! !

It’s clear why you are on this thread from this comment way over yonder in the PA side of this group....,.

 

FuckAllYou.png

Whatever. I have a weakness for decent engineering and pretty low tolerance for snake oil.

Say that you like electric drive because of its silence and you're prepared to live with say 20 nm range under power and a 5 day recharge time on solar or you're only interested in going from shore power outlet to shore power outlet and I'll not criticise. You know the limits of your system. It's irrelevant to what I do but whatever.

Start saying stuff like electric is *the* way to go, gloss over all the flaws and I'll mock you. You make as much sense and have the equivalent level of common sense as a lycra clad bicyclist has when saying cycling is the only sensible transport method when talking to someone with 3 children and a dog, or someone with 2 tonnes of rocks to transport. Self-righteous narrow-mindedness begs to be mocked.

If this description fits you - it's your problem. I really don't care.

You've already lost the engineering discussion and don't appear to have anything interesting to contribute so if you object to my tone, feel free to put me in your ignore list.

FKT

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5 hours ago, 2flit said:

OK..,. So I know it's Sailing Anarchy I'm on here; and it's all Miss Congeniality.  But what the hey..... Mr. Tasmanian Dare Devil, AKA Fah Kiew Tu" you have all the subtlety of a D-8 Dozer with brush hooks on running thru the neighbors garden. I have to say that the SA moniker you have chosen is rancidly apt. I get where you are coming from but really please NO  ONE  here is trying to "suit your needs" ;..... and statement "if it doesn't suit my needs then it's totally irrelevant" ...  ! ! !

It’s clear why you are on this thread from this comment way over yonder in the PA side of this group....,.

 

FuckAllYou.png

Hey 2flit, the general rule is be polite and courteous, no bad language and don't pick on people. All of us here are one big happy family, quite often FKT will host zoom singalongs and we share muffin recipes that we eat with iced tea and whatnot. You really need to ask yourself "why am I not invited?"

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1 hour ago, toad said:

Hey 2flit, the general rule is be polite and courteous, no bad language and don't pick on people. All of us here are one big happy family, quite often FKT will host zoom singalongs and we share muffin recipes that we eat with iced tea and whatnot. You really need to ask yourself "why am I not invited?"

Why, just yesertday we ate zuccini bread muffins while singing cumbaya on zoom. It was fun, and tasty.

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12 hours ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Then you circle back to diesel-electric drive and all the reason it gets used - or not- on ships and then you realize your version will be a one-off experiment and then you decide if you like science experiments or not.

I suspect one day someone will make a really nice off-the-shelf unit. That day is not today.

The off the shelf units are in development at multiple places. In 5 years there is going to be a bunch of new weird options available. Whether they end up making sense is another thing entirely.

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9 hours ago, Panoramix said:

The numbers seem about right to me but In real life not many yachts cross the doldrums. Typically marine engines spend sizable part of their operating lives barely above tickover with short bursts of power, some even get used to recharge batteries. Thus many diesel engines are often barely loaded whereas they are designed to run at 2400rpm turning a shaft with a propeller at the end. Electric efficiency is more or less constant whatever the load, when you ask nothing, consumption is nil!

Crossing the English channel under power is something I have done may be twice in 30 years, one crossing is say 24 hours at 1.5 l/hour or 36 liter of diesel, with the diesel electric system 36/0.8=45. I can't believe that these 9 litres of diesel economy per crossing are worth it considering that most of the diesel burnt by the motor will be by 1 litre shots faffing around harbours and their entrance while the engine is very inefficient. If were to have an hybrid system, I would shoot for 30 minutes at cruising speed under batteries and a generator just big enough to keep the boat going at 5 knots which would be much smaller than the engine needed to handle the boat. I am not convinced that I am ready to live with the extra complexity and having to carry and service a diesel generator negates in part the advantages of electric drive but the efficiency argument would not apply to me as I don't have very often the opportunity to run the diesel engine close to its peak efficiency.

In the U.S. east coast, almost every cruising sailboat spends hours at a time running under diesel. This is even more true for racing cruising boats. Wind is fickle, schedules are tight, distances are great, and the Iron Genny will get you from Annapolis to Raritan to position the boat for the next regatta. Sail it? Not going to happen.

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15 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

In the U.S. east coast, almost every cruising sailboat spends hours at a time running under diesel. This is even more true for racing cruising boats. Wind is fickle, schedules are tight, distances are great, and the Iron Genny will get you from Annapolis to Raritan to position the boat for the next regatta. Sail it? Not going to happen.

Even more so in the PNW.  The both locations have equivalent distances, 30-120 n. miles between venues and much more if you are going north or south along the coast.  The PNW throws in currents that shocked me when I came out here from LIS.  3 knots of current at the Race used to be a big deal.  Finding 3 knots out here is current relief.  Toss in unpredictable winds. 

There is a place for electric motors, certainly.  It just not on the east or west coasts. 

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28 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

In the U.S. east coast ... distances are great,

Yet many North American based cruisers arrive in the South Pacific with vast arrays of fuel cans on their decks.

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I only used close to our fuel range under power (~500 n.m.) once - but it was DAYS of motoring in complete calm from Sri Lanka to Maldives.

Lots of times we did motor a few hundred miles total on a long passage.

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13 hours ago, Panoramix said:

The numbers seem about right to me but In real life not many yachts cross the doldrums. Typically marine engines spend sizable part of their operating lives barely above tickover with short bursts of power, some even get used to recharge batteries. Thus many diesel engines are often barely loaded whereas they are designed to run at 2400rpm turning a shaft with a propeller at the end. Electric efficiency is more or less constant whatever the load, when you ask nothing, consumption is nil!

Crossing the English channel under power is something I have done may be twice in 30 years, one crossing is say 24 hours at 1.5 l/hour or 36 liter of diesel, with the diesel electric system 36/0.8=45. I can't believe that these 9 litres of diesel economy per crossing are worth it considering that most of the diesel burnt by the motor will be by 1 litre shots faffing around harbours and their entrance while the engine is very inefficient. If were to have an hybrid system, I would shoot for 30 minutes at cruising speed under batteries and a generator just big enough to keep the boat going at 5 knots which would be much smaller than the engine needed to handle the boat. I am not convinced that I am ready to live with the extra complexity and having to carry and service a diesel generator negates in part the advantages of electric drive but the efficiency argument would not apply to me as I don't have very often the opportunity to run the diesel engine close to its peak efficiency.

Please install an electrical drive in your current or if you don't have one, next boat.
And then report back to us with costs, usage & an honest assessment of how happy you are with the system.

As for my diesel, well its been in 35 years now, still starts on the dot, 1 litre an hour at cruising revs. I'd say that's pretty good service.

Just looking at my logbook for a real world example.


Hull -> Ijmuiden (Netherlands) and then up the Nord Zee Canal to Amsterdam. We did 232 miles through the water in total, 42 hours. Despite great winds to start with we still had to use the engine for around 10 hours of the crossing & the entire 3-4 hour run up the canal to Amsterdam. During the next 4 days or so cruising through the Ijsselmeer we probably added another 12 hours, then the trip back to Amsterdam and back up the canal another 8.
And finally the crossing back another 16 hours as we were becalmed on our 2nd day at sea.
Without an engine that trip would have been impossible to make as we all had work commitments, and even if we didn't, we wouldn't have been able to see anywhere near as much as we would have been waiting for wind.
So probably  40-42 hours motoring in 7-8 days at 5.5 knots. There's no electrical system I can install for near the same weight that will give me that range and the cost would be crippling.
I'd say those numbers are pretty normal and maybe even on the low side for anyone doing that cruise in our area.

Just skimming the logbook again there are multiple deliveries where we need to be at x place for a regatta, have to take the boat up the weekend before with no wind, so its engine time.
It works for Sailing Uma because they don't have any place they need to be. For the rest of us its necessary.

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I'd say that biggest scare about electric gaining popularity is that people won't learn the rites needed to keep the diesel god going. Many (most?) sailors won't do multi day passages and for those electric might be good option. But if they graduate to do longer passages they don't have the experience to use and service diesel engine.

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The 'idea' of a one generator two electric engine setup might have some merit on a cat. Especially given that these Fischer Panda generators are getting so compact, and light, and that they work smartly at variable rpms depending on load requirements. The weight strategy would start to make sense 'if' the re-gen capacity comes into play in a bigger way so as to lessen the current dependency on big battery banks.

I remember Glacier Bay investing some time and money into the concept(around 07 or so?) and I believe they were the ones who were doing a few(? or just one?) of the Leopard cats in a diesel electric format. I have a vague unverifiable recollection of one delivery crew report on the crossing from S Africa that they had more power than they new what to do with from the re-gen(for house not for engine)...but i think mainly when the boat was in a comfortable groove around 9-10-11-14 knots for a period of time. Maybe the drag penalty at those speeds is 1-1.5 knots?

On an ocean crossing if you could keep that groove going for stretches it could make sense for house power needs with two electric hydro-gen props running full tilt(don't know how noisy that might be or if it is/was). The Watt-Sea hydro gens have a few different props rated for boat speeds maybe6-8 knots, 8-10 knots and a couple more levels up(?). A variable pitch prop can handle a wider range of boat speeds for the re-gen part in the same way. Obviously if the wind dies and you've gotta motor, you'll still have the same limited range, but at least you'd be starting fully charged!

There was also (and maybe still is?) a VW diesel-electric installation on the Green Marine cruisers. https://www.boatus.com/magazine/2012/april/run-silent-run-green.asp Not sure how they're doing or whether their still building them. Glacier Bay got out of the concept and I guess Leopard did too. There was one guy trying to sell the remainder of a Glacier Bay system that I think had a blown brains to the system or whatever and nobody around to fix them. He was asking for 3% of  the original $100,000 installed price. There was another Alibi 54 cat that turfed its all electric original set-up and replaced it with two trusted Volvo Pentas mainly do to reliability issues.

So maybe the concept isn't there yet, but if, as mentioned, certain things were to happen(battery weight/size of banks, systems reliability and wider scale repairability, safety concerns, cost), it could get there and be more widely adopted. And as for being part of the design from the ground up, there's flexibility as to where you can put the generator, and you free up space all round. Ultimately,  the dream, even if its not reality yet, would be to have a re-gen system that has solar/hydro/diesel regen capacity, both for flexibility and redundancy, that balances between the three sources to produce  range on a par with just diesel, that uses less fuel,  and ends up being lighter than diesel and more practical than all electric...so the slight loss of efficiency of just diesel electric might be acceptable in the context of a (theoretical at this point) balanced system(sail power/solar/hydro/diesel). (Dare to dream)

As far as range problems I get it and wouldn't want to give up my diesel as it stands today.  I also like the safety factor and that fixing it isn't a problem(though it can sometimes take a while to get the parts from Volvo).   

One thing that hasn't been mentioned in terms of range is the motor-sailing aspect of things for general cruising. If you've got a full-battened main and a boat that points decently you've got a great option to go mainsail only and pinch with the motor just slightly ticking. Just low rpms will give you an extra 5 degrees of pointing ability or slightly more in a certain, say 6-12 knot wind range(depends on the boat).  Going up a sound or channel, that extra 5-8 degrees of pinching can often mean the difference between tacking upwind a few times or taking the sails down and motoring head to wind(where your power consumption goes way, way up, albeit for better VMG). Dashew was a big fan of this, where I learned it, and love to have this mode in the back pocket for certain situations.

There's also the scenario in 2,3 maybe 4 knots(depends on the boat) where a slight tick from the iron genny might be a worth while minimal withdrawal from the power bank. If it were to give you five degrees and a half a knot by just barely ticking the engine and helped you get through doldrums, or if it would at least slow the draw down from the batteries for (how long??) until you can find wind or it finds you, and you can resume sail power, and possibly add hydro gen back into the mix at some point.

I wouldn't know where to start to run the VMG numbers vs power consumption on motor-sailing in mainsail only mode vs just motoring head to wind(on various vessels etc.). I also recognize that a given boat's performance under auxiliary sail mode doesn't care what kind of engine is powering the prop. I guess what I'm saying is there are a lot of uses and combos of motor/sail along the spectrum from no engine to big engine, from a high performance cruiser to a trawler with a riding sail, that it's not all about range at 8 knots/9knots/10knots if you've got an efficient hull and rig that can already perform in well under sail in light and medium conditions.

Whether or not the numbers add up presently, these IMHO would be case needs that shouldn't be relegated to niche for an auxiliary sailboat...nor should the case needs of boats who motor for 10 minutes and throw the sails up and motor back for 10 minutes after a day sail or race and then plug their boats back in for a few days to a week. Also let's not forget those who like to sail on or off their mooring and/or in and out of their slip, sometimes fuck up and use their engine for 2 minutes a week. Their case needs count as well.

The thing is 10 minutes two times a week on the engine is probably more majority rather than niche anyway, and ironically, diesels don't really like this type of intermittent light use, whereas electric engines could care less.

 

 

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3 hours ago, MiddayGun said:

Please install an electrical drive in your current or if you don't have one, next boat.
And then report back to us with costs, usage & an honest assessment of how happy you are with the system.

As for my diesel, well its been in 35 years now, still starts on the dot, 1 litre an hour at cruising revs. I'd say that's pretty good service.

Just looking at my logbook for a real world example.


Hull -> Ijmuiden (Netherlands) and then up the Nord Zee Canal to Amsterdam. We did 232 miles through the water in total, 42 hours. Despite great winds to start with we still had to use the engine for around 10 hours of the crossing & the entire 3-4 hour run up the canal to Amsterdam. During the next 4 days or so cruising through the Ijsselmeer we probably added another 12 hours, then the trip back to Amsterdam and back up the canal another 8.
And finally the crossing back another 16 hours as we were becalmed on our 2nd day at sea.
Without an engine that trip would have been impossible to make as we all had work commitments, and even if we didn't, we wouldn't have been able to see anywhere near as much as we would have been waiting for wind.
So probably  40-42 hours motoring in 7-8 days at 5.5 knots. There's no electrical system I can install for near the same weight that will give me that range and the cost would be crippling.
I'd say those numbers are pretty normal and maybe even on the low side for anyone doing that cruise in our area.

Just skimming the logbook again there are multiple deliveries where we need to be at x place for a regatta, have to take the boat up the weekend before with no wind, so its engine time.
It works for Sailing Uma because they don't have any place they need to be. For the rest of us its necessary.

I don't think that it would work well for you nor for @Zonker but I think that you are all too quick to dismiss the idea like people were all too quick to dismiss the idea of electrical vehicles 20 years ago. Like many people don't drive across the country, many don't motor their boat long distances. Yes, if you go far away on a schedule, relying only on sails is not an option but quite a few boat owners value the sailing and on bad years will just stay closer to their homeport. I've stopped racing boats with a lid on 15 years ago and now I only cruise with my daughters and my dad on his boat. It is a production boat from the noughties so long before electric was remotely possible and It wouldn't make sense to take out the diesel engine. We don't like motoring long distances so we tend to sail to our destination in one go then come back in smaller hops, if weather doesn't let us go to our planned destination we just sail somewhere else! Being dependent on a diesel engine while sailing doesn't stop me being interested in what others do, I don't really like diesel engines as I have had my fair share of time spent in the motor compartment trying to figure out what's wrong while being nauseous (not my idea of a perfect vacation!), also  the exhaust smell makes one of my daughters feel sick, and I like being with my girls onboard! With a UMA like system we definitely wouldn't go as far away as we sometimes do but I am still a bit envious of their setup. Part of the reason is that I understand better electrics than a combustion engine, and as I've said above the odours aren't nice for many. Sailing a cruising boat is a pretty irrational choice to make as you spend huge sums of money to travel below bicycle speeds, so it is all about enjoying the experience. If you enjoy operating your diesel engine, it is definitely the right choice for you.

I am not too sure, I would want an hybrid system, sure you become less dependant of the diesel engine, presumably it is quieter when in use but it sounds a bit complicated and implies lots of systems to maintain!

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9 hours ago, fastyacht said:

Why, just yesertday we ate zuccini bread muffins while singing cumbaya on zoom. It was fun, and tasty.

Hah! Fooled you again!

Mine was rum cake.

FB- Doug

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1 hour ago, Steam Flyer said:

Hah! Fooled you again!

Mine was rum cake.

FB- Doug

Haha all is not what it seems on zoom ;)

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2 hours ago, Panoramix said:

I don't think that it would work well for you nor for @Zonker but I think that you are all too quick to dismiss the idea like people were all too quick to dismiss the idea of electrical vehicles 20 years ago.

It's easy to quickly dismiss electric drive for sailboats for ones own boat when you know how far you need go under power. It would have been a fail for me just in the last two weeks, let alone a years sailing use.

Electric vehicles?  20 years ago you couldn't buy an electric car with a 300+ mile range, and the life expectancy of the batteries was unknown.

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Electric vehicles, if anything, show how eager people are willing to adopt the new tech if it isn’t stupid and meets their use case. 
 

I used to commute with a Leaf - it was great. No need to go to the gas station  recharge every night and didn’t even need the extra range. Beyond 100miles range, a lot of electric cars start expending more energy carrying battery mass - which starts being a diminishing return as you need more mass to carry mass to carry more energy.

Just give the market 150nm; 5 knots for 30 hours and you can make entry into a lot of offshore boats provided:

1. It weighs the same or less than diesel and fuel system and fuel 

2. People are willing to ignore cost provided there’s concrete user benefits and not just a bunch of limitations. 

But I still say all this electric boat stuff, other than ferry/charter/club use where you’re cycling every night? Is very performative nonsense. The battery system, being created represents a huge energy and pollution investment that I submit, probably exceeds theoretical gains vs a diesel that gets 500 hrs a year for 10+ years.

Lithium batteries for the house bank totally makes sense - it is lighter, lasts more cycles than lead acid and you cycle thru them less because of deeper discharge capabilities.  

 

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12 hours ago, fastyacht said:

In the U.S. east coast, almost every cruising sailboat spends hours at a time running under diesel. This is even more true for racing cruising boats. Wind is fickle, schedules are tight, distances are great, and the Iron Genny will get you from Annapolis to Raritan to position the boat for the next regatta. Sail it? Not going to happen.

This!

One memorable - and not for good reasons - trip was Annapolis to New York City and the engine ran pretty much full throttle the whole way non-stop with some fueling from jugs while underway. It was hot, no wind at all, and tons of flies :(The rest of the trip was fun though, but we NEVER would have been able to explore Long Island Sound in the time allotted for the trip if we had relied on electric and sail power, never mind I cannot even imagine running Hell's Gate with some wimpy electric motor :o:o

Then there was a summer delivery from Florida up the ICW. Pretty much did 1,000 miles and 800 of it was under power. Sailing the ICW is maybe technically possible sort of, but the swift current light air twisty channel drawbridge areas are going to be entertaining to onlookers for sure.

The battery sailors never end with "Well I just wouldn't do that". Well of course you wouldn't, you can't! Maybe that suits you, but it is a non-starter in most of the USA at least.

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A diesel electric shouldn’t be lumped in with ‘battery sailors’.

The ideal setup on a two engine one generator cat should  have a pre setup for a second drop in generator or be able to run under only electric for very short range. 

Club race, daysail or short runs to close by anchorage...leave one or both generators in the locker if you really feel like it. Regatta or further, drop one or both back in.

My buddy’s  uncle flew a Cessna across the Atlantic and then down to Africa stuffed with jerry cans of fuel.

Pretty sure you could rig up a few jerry cans of diesel to feed the thirsty Panda to get a100 miles to the regatta.

And back!

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ok...  Sticking with the facts.... There is one diesel Electric

(From Baltic Yachts Web site:

Quote

LOW LOCAL EMISSIONS

A sophisticated combination of hybrid propulsion, hydrogeneration, advanced battery technology and ingenious engineering allow us, theoretically, to build a 100ft+ zero emissions yacht. While this might sound extreme, we believe it will be the norm in a few years' time. Low local emissions yachts have, in fact, been part of the Baltic programme for some time, as several of our recent launches, including Baltic 142 Canova, feature state of the art systems that enable them to run on electricity for prolonged periods of time. Sophisticated, silent, emissions free – the future of environmentally responsible superyachts is already here!

as they talk about CANOVA

Quote

BALTIC 142 CANOVA
FEATURING A DSS FOIL

This highly innovative long distance cruising yacht is notable for being the first superyacht to be fitted with a transverse Dynamic Stability System foil, designed to reduce heel angle, increase speed and dampen pitching to improve comfort.

She is also fitted with a sophisticated diesel electric propulsion and hydro-generating system reducing the use of fossil fuel and enabling the yacht to be used for long periods in ‘silent’ mode.

Vibration and noise levels are further reduced by using an electric propulsion motor powered by lithium ion batteries charged by a combination of traditional generators and propeller driven hydro-generation.

Canova is designed to sail quickly, comfortably and efficiently and in addition her owner wants to be able to maintain and service the yacht without the need for specialist shipyard help in remote parts of the world.

The combination of her large deck saloon, which forms the focal point of her accommodation, and her large, well-appointed cockpit which is protected by a long solid bimini, provides a superb living space while sailing.

An impressive package of new technology will make her a genuinely remarkable project, underlining the company’s position as the world’s leading builder of super-sailing yachts.

20190816_esk_0860_1.jpg

 

 

youtube video of ACTUAL vessel sailing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuB3TGcX900

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, fufkin said:

A diesel electric shouldn’t be lumped in with ‘battery sailors’.

The ideal setup on a two engine one generator cat should  have a pre setup for a second drop in generator or be able to run under only electric for very short range. 

Club race, daysail or short runs to close by anchorage...leave one or both generators in the locker if you really feel like it. Regatta or further, drop one or both back in.

My buddy’s  uncle flew a Cessna across the Atlantic and then down to Africa stuffed with jerry cans of fuel.

Pretty sure you could rig up a few jerry cans of diesel to feed the thirsty Panda to get a100 miles to the regatta.

And back!

Re-read Zonker's calculation WRT losses for a diesel-electric drive.

At best you need to carry 15% more fuel for the same range and you've introduced 3 more electrical things that can fail, rendering you powerless. The generator head, the VFD and the electric motor attached to the shaft.

You could argue that the shaft motor is no more likely to fail than a mechanical gearbox and I wouldn't argue too hard against this, but it does need electricity. Get it full of water and you've got a big problem. Gearbox, not so much. I've ignored batteries because with a diesel-electric setup, you don't need any extras. Of course, then you're going nowhere without the engine running, so I can't see the point for sailboats. Add batteries, add complexity, more potential points of failure.

Boats are a totally different use-case to electric cars. I'd happily have an electric car, the entire concept makes sense now they've got decent range. But the point is - NOW they have decent range. How many would have an electric car with a range of maybe 15 miles at best?

FKT

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1 hour ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

Get [the electric motor] full of water and you've got a big problem. Gearbox, not so much.

A disaster either way, but, FWIW,  a well insulated electric motor should be able to operate while flooded. 

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2 hours ago, weightless said:

A disaster either way, but, FWIW,  a well insulated electric motor should be able to operate while flooded. 

 

3 hours ago, h20man said:

ok...  Sticking with the facts.... There is one diesel Electric

(From Baltic Yachts Web site:

as they talk about CANOVA

20190816_esk_0860_1.jpg

 

 

youtube video of ACTUAL vessel sailing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuB3TGcX900

 

 

 

 

Nice, if you like that kind of thing. Still looks like a med cruiser for the well heeled "i'm so woke" granola eater merchant banker. There is a certain economy of scale when your wallet is bigger than the 140 boat you're buying, that ode to conspicuous consumption has masses of room for expensive batteries so I'm sure the concept works. l'll also bet the owner was heavily consulted about range.

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5 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

Re-read Zonker's calculation WRT losses for a diesel-electric drive.

At best you need to carry 15% more fuel for the same range and you've introduced 3 more electrical things that can fail, rendering you powerless. The generator head, the VFD and the electric motor attached to the shaft.

You could argue that the shaft motor is no more likely to fail than a mechanical gearbox and I wouldn't argue too hard against this, but it does need electricity. Get it full of water and you've got a big problem. Gearbox, not so much. I've ignored batteries because with a diesel-electric setup, you don't need any extras. Of course, then you're going nowhere without the engine running, so I can't see the point for sailboats. Add batteries, add complexity, more potential points of failure.

Boats are a totally different use-case to electric cars. I'd happily have an electric car, the entire concept makes sense now they've got decent range. But the point is - NOW they have decent range. How many would have an electric car with a range of maybe 15 miles at best?

FKT

''Of course, then you're going nowhere without the engine running, so I can't see the point for sailboats.''

I don't understand this statement. It should be the other way around. I was always taught that the great thing about sailing is that if your engine fucks up, you've always got your sails to get you home. Over decades I can count probably just under a handful of engine failures and have persisted to sail every one of them in, all the way to my slip, maybe a couple with hailing a tow at the mouth of my inlet because wind angle was not gonna let it happen. Cumulatively, that would count an engineless crossing of L Ontario after a certain Grateful Dead concert because we felt sailing was better than waiting around to fix it. No matter what, I'm a better sailor than a diesel mechanic, for whatever that's worth. And yes, I've been stuck many hours from home in dead calm and thanked the diesel engine that has decent range.

I'd take the 15% hit if it were to extend local range over an all electric set-up. For 100 to 150 nautical miles, how many extra fuel jugs do I need on a slippery hull? Not much. Would it add complexity and points of failure? Yeah. But that doesn't mean it can't be refined. 

Let me ask you this. If a diesel and a diesel electric which can run on electric only for say 30 nautical miles were both susceptible to air in the fuel lines in rocky weather, which one has more redundancy? So for your three added points of failure, can I take one back? 

 

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1 hour ago, fufkin said:

Let me ask you this. If a diesel and a diesel electric which can run on electric only for say 30 nautical miles were both susceptible to air in the fuel lines in rocky weather, which one has more redundancy? So for your three added points of failure, can I take one back?

Yeah, because now you've got a hybrid sort of like a Prius. Other than the increase in complexity with associated cost and space needs I've no issues with such a setup. In a big enough boat it likely could be made to work quite well. Having even 10 nm range under power on battery before having to start the diesel would be great IMO.

FKT

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Fah Kiew Tu said:

Yeah, because now you've got a hybrid sort of like a Prius. Other than the increase in complexity with associated cost and space needs I've no issues with such a setup. In a big enough boat it likely could be made to work quite well. Having even 10 nm range under power on battery before having to start the diesel would be great IMO.

FKT

It seems that stuff in production has half that range in battery only mode: https://www.katamarans.com/ita1499/

edit. this system is also Oceanvolt. I'd like to see other brands too or electric and hybrid stuff will stay expensive and marginal option.

Edited by Upp3

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4 minutes ago, Upp3 said:

It seems that stuff in production has half that range in battery only mode: https://www.katamarans.com/ita1499/

edit. this system is also Oceanvolt. I'd like to see other brands too or electric and hybrid stuff will stay expensive and marginal option.

Hmmm. 30 to 45 minutes on battery at 7 knots.

Be still my beating heart at such performance figures... bet the price tag figure is in inverse proportion though.

FKT

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Some day, somebody, not too distant in the future shall produce cruising sails which will produce PV (electrical) energy. And that will be the end of this discussion. 

When you sail, you will have more energy stored in your batteries than you will ever need. 

When moored in a marina,  on calm days , you will hoist your mainsail, plug into the main grid and sell this energy to pay all all the expenses of your boat.

Sail makers shall arrange loans for new sails  and battery banks which shall pay for themselves without you paying a penny for them.

All you shall  need to do is to locate your boat in a relatively sunny place. Which is plenty and what we already desire anyway.

 

 

 

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