Jump to content

Torqeedo - what's the current scoop? Tired of gas engine trouble..


Recommended Posts

I'm fed up with my Johnson 4hp 2 stroke - supposedly a really nice motor but my particular usage habits end up with it in a non-working state 99% of the time. I have my own business that is busy and sometimes don't touch the boat for a month or two. In that time, the motor bricks itself. At our club, the dry sailed boats have to maneuver out the furthest and you really need a motor for this - especially if you sail with newbies who barely know anything about sailing, nevermind trying to sail out of the docks. So this non-working motor situation means I don't get to take the boat out. Really depressing when you've been working for two months solid and just want to go for a damn sail and the f$&@#% motor won't fire. I'm out $500 from the last shop visit and again after one use it's bricked again. Low speed jet is clogged up and the starter cable guide broke.

 

So, I've been considering a Torqeedo to remedy this situation. Keeping the battery charged would be easy - just plug it up right next to my Tack Tick that I set in a window to keep charged and grab both before headed out.

 

Power wise, I'm a bit concerned the Torqeedo won't have anywhere near the same oomph, but at the same time I prefer to sail and really only use the motor for in and out of the docks, and the occasions jaunt back to the dock when the wind dies on the course. The boat is a 22', 2150lbs fully loaded plus people - so prob 2500lbs. Sailing on a lake with no appreciable current. So power wise it's probably not a big deal after all, just worried the occasional traveling regatta might be an issue.

 

The tiller situation of the Torqeedo is a big problem - the boat is a closed transom with a lifting bracket - so the fixed tiller of the Torqeedo would certainly be in contact with the stern and prevent the motor from being straight out. I have talked myself into the remote throttle control to remedy this situation, although I wish I didn't have to spend the extra money for that. Dear Torqeedo, it would be nice if this had a way to angle up!

 

So what are the current thoughts on the Torqeedos - specifically the Travel 1003? I read about some serious issues with early models but most of those seem to have been worked out over time.

 

Lastly, who has the deals on these things? Barring terrible reviews, I will probably pull the trigger on this early next week. Obviously will want to verify a current serial number, I have seen the sellers moving older versions at steep discounts.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ethanol in your gas? Before giving up on the outboard, try a fuel stabilizer, run the carb dry by shutting off the fuel, and unscrew the drain screw for the carb bowl.

 

Ethanol is a nightmare for infrequently used small outboards. The gas absorbs more moisture, it separates in a few weeks and jets clog far more quickly.

 

The Torqueedos are nice - but you do have much less range. For your application they sound fine except for a travelling regatta (how far do you need to motor??)

 

I've never seen great deals on them; most seem to sell at the same retail price but check Defender and the other mail order guys.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been down every road imaginable with the gas stuff. New 100% gas, always add stabilizer. Cleaned out internal tank on engine, threw away old external. Brand new mix can, filled through filter funnel. Carb drained after each use. Doesn't matter - must be cursed. To add insult to injury, I bought the boat from a widow and it had not been sailed in over a year. Engine started on second pull with old gas in the tank (Florida). At that moment, I thought to myself "maybe this will be a good little engine". Fail.

 

For traveling stuff, I have no idea what we might run into, which is my issue with it. I will say I haven't been anywhere in two years and given my current work load it doesn't look good. I also don't have regular crew given my infrequent or odd sailing schedule so not really on the table anyway. But I'm sure as soon as I get one of these, that will all change.

 

I own a whole pile of Honda EU series inverter generators for my business. We don't do anything special to them - they get ethanol gas, we don't run the carb out of fuel, they sometimes sit for months. They work - every stinking' time. Just got a new EU7000 that is fuel injected - so far it's been awesome. Wish they would hurry up and put that tech into a small outboard.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Torqeedo is great. Instant oomph. Close to 4hp for sure.

 

No pricing deals that I was able to find 2 years ago, they control the distributors pretty effectively.

 

I've had no issues unless i didn't really get the connection tight

Link to post
Share on other sites

So long as the range is acceptable to you sound it sound like this is a perfect use of an electric. And if you ever need a longer range, bring along a Honda generator and charge on the go. Instant gass-electric hybrid.

Link to post
Share on other sites

NOT close to 4HP, more like 3HP. I've owned the 2-cycle Johnson 4hp and other 2-strokes in the past. Currently have a 3.5HP and 6HP Tohatsu 4-strokes. I've done extensive testing with the Torqeedo Cruise 2.0 and 1003 with the integrated battery.

 

The 3.5HP gets me about 5.5-6 knots..... the 6HP goes close to 7k. The Torqeedo 2.0 did 6+ (so close to their claim). The big disappointment was the 1003 which could only get to 4.5-5k, not even close to the 3.5HP 4-stroke. Also it can only go full tilt for <1hr. unless you buy multiple batteries.

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you bring a non marine generator on a boat you need to be very careful that any gas leaks cannot end up in the bilge. This can be very dangerous and is not recommended although I know people do it and I have never talked to anyone killed doing it so it must be OK.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's about time another manufacturer popped up in this space. Torqeedo has been out on their own for a long time. The new guys products look very similar to the torqeedo product. Hopefully they will perform well.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I switched two years ago from a Suzuki 5hp out-border to a Torqeedo Travel 503 and I don't want to go back. Never had any issue with the Torqeedo, enough power to get out of the harbour and back. I'm charging the battery at home over night. I can easily remove the motor from the stern or put it back there. So I'm very pleased with the device and can recommend it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I switched two years ago from a Suzuki 5hp out-border to a Torqeedo Travel 503 and I don't want to go back. Never had any issue with the Torqeedo, enough power to get out of the harbour and back. I'm charging the battery at home over night. I can easily remove the motor from the stern or put it back there. So I'm very pleased with the device and can recommend it.

seppel, what kind of boat is the 503 pushing around?

Link to post
Share on other sites

also seppel, since you seem to be the only person who actually has one of these wee beasties, can you tell me if it can be tilted up and locked in place? Often there is a rule requiring the outboard to be mounted on the boat "ready for immediate immersion". I can't tell from any of the media if this is possible and if so can it be done without removing the tiller unit?

Link to post
Share on other sites

^^^Don't know for sure about the 503 but if it shares hardware with the 1003 it can be tilted and locked up. The 1003 has a long leg and the tilt lock is at less than the max tilt angle of the hinge. On a boat that I've sailed on with a 1003 a block of wood was used to tilt it a bit beyond the built in stop to keep the motor from dragging. Agricultural, but seemed to work well.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been down every road imaginable with the gas stuff. New 100% gas, always add stabilizer. Cleaned out internal tank on engine, threw away old external. Brand new mix can, filled through filter funnel. Carb drained after each use. Doesn't matter - must be cursed. To add insult to injury, I bought the boat from a widow and it had not been sailed in over a year. Engine started on second pull with old gas in the tank (Florida). At that moment, I thought to myself "maybe this will be a good little engine". Fail.

 

For traveling stuff, I have no idea what we might run into, which is my issue with it. I will say I haven't been anywhere in two years and given my current work load it doesn't look good. I also don't have regular crew given my infrequent or odd sailing schedule so not really on the table anyway. But I'm sure as soon as I get one of these, that will all change.

 

I own a whole pile of Honda EU series inverter generators for my business. We don't do anything special to them - they get ethanol gas, we don't run the carb out of fuel, they sometimes sit for months. They work - every stinking' time. Just got a new EU7000 that is fuel injected - so far it's been awesome. Wish they would hurry up and put that tech into a small outboard.

Buy a Honda outboard?

 

Seriously, I race on a friends boat (FT 7.5) with a Torqeedo. Range is the issue. Great for getting out of the Marina, but doesn't have enough juice to get from one end of San Diego Bay to the other and back if the wind shuts down. A second charged battery as a spare would help, but is heavy if your racing. Ok, maybe from a transit the boat standpoint. Everything is a trade off.

 

Not sure the gas leaking into the bilge is any more serious for a portable generator onboard than it is for the gas powered outboard motor...gas in bilge is bad, but its bad no matter what the source (generator, outboard, leaking spare fuel tank, etc, etc)

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I switched two years ago from a Suzuki 5hp out-border to a Torqeedo Travel 503 and I don't want to go back. Never had any issue with the Torqeedo, enough power to get out of the harbour and back. I'm charging the battery at home over night. I can easily remove the motor from the stern or put it back there. So I'm very pleased with the device and can recommend it.

seppel, what kind of boat is the 503 pushing around?

 

A Beneteau First 21.7. I added to the original battery with 320Wh the 520Wh to extend the range.

Link to post
Share on other sites

also seppel, since you seem to be the only person who actually has one of these wee beasties, can you tell me if it can be tilted up and locked in place? Often there is a rule requiring the outboard to be mounted on the boat "ready for immediate immersion". I can't tell from any of the media if this is possible and if so can it be done without removing the tiller unit?

Yes no problem. I usually have the battery and tiller removed when daysailing. During a race I have the motor stored in the cabin of the boat, so it is almost ready for immediate immersion.

Link to post
Share on other sites

503 and 1003 are the same. The only difference is the battery, which is 30% bigger in 1003 and enables the 1 kW power instead of 0.5 kW. Epropulsion Spirit 1.0 seems to be quite the same as 1003 expect it has double the battery size for the same price.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm fed up with my Johnson 4hp 2 stroke - supposedly a really nice motor but my particular usage habits end up with it in a non-working state 99% of the time. I have my own business that is busy and sometimes don't touch the boat for a month or two. In that time, the motor bricks itself. At our club, the dry sailed boats have to maneuver out the furthest and you really need a motor for this - especially if you sail with newbies who barely know anything about sailing, nevermind trying to sail out of the docks. So this non-working motor situation means I don't get to take the boat out. Really depressing when you've been working for two months solid and just want to go for a damn sail and the f$&@#% motor won't fire. I'm out $500 from the last shop visit and again after one use it's bricked again. Low speed jet is clogged up and the starter cable guide broke.

 

So, I've been considering a Torqeedo to remedy this situation. Keeping the battery charged would be easy - just plug it up right next to my Tack Tick that I set in a window to keep charged and grab both before headed out.

 

Power wise, I'm a bit concerned the Torqeedo won't have anywhere near the same oomph, but at the same time I prefer to sail and really only use the motor for in and out of the docks, and the occasions jaunt back to the dock when the wind dies on the course. The boat is a 22', 2150lbs fully loaded plus people - so prob 2500lbs. Sailing on a lake with no appreciable current. So power wise it's probably not a big deal after all, just worried the occasional traveling regatta might be an issue.

 

The tiller situation of the Torqeedo is a big problem - the boat is a closed transom with a lifting bracket - so the fixed tiller of the Torqeedo would certainly be in contact with the stern and prevent the motor from being straight out. I have talked myself into the remote throttle control to remedy this situation, although I wish I didn't have to spend the extra money for that. Dear Torqeedo, it would be nice if this had a way to angle up!

 

So what are the current thoughts on the Torqeedos - specifically the Travel 1003? I read about some serious issues with early models but most of those seem to have been worked out over time.

 

Lastly, who has the deals on these things? Barring terrible reviews, I will probably pull the trigger on this early next week. Obviously will want to verify a current serial number, I have seen the sellers moving older versions at steep discounts.

I used a 1003 on a boat about the same weight as yours for years successfully. Mine was an early gen and since then the battery has increased in capacity pretty significantly. regardless, get two. Yes, they're spendy, but unlike a gas outboard you can't ask a passing boat to lend you some electrons if you completely lose the charge.

 

We used that motor for basically the same tasks you are saying - maybe a few miles in and out to a local regatta. For deliveries, I had a 4-stroke 6 hp that would push the boat at 7 knots and had "unlimited" range. When we picked up crew we'd take that off, put on the torqeedo and have a blast. Only time I ever really got worried was in marblehead - dead in the morning getting out to tinkers, dead in the afternoon coming home (dead most of the day "racing" too but at least then you were drifting with your sails up ;). 2 batteries were at their limit in those conditions, but with some planning they work out.

 

Just looked up the e-propulsion site. Looks eerily familiar to the Torqeedo site.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I've been down every road imaginable with the gas stuff. New 100% gas, always add stabilizer. Cleaned out internal tank on engine, threw away old external. Brand new mix can, filled through filter funnel. Carb drained after each use. Doesn't matter - must be cursed. To add insult to injury, I bought the boat from a widow and it had not been sailed in over a year. Engine started on second pull with old gas in the tank (Florida). At that moment, I thought to myself "maybe this will be a good little engine". Fail.

 

For traveling stuff, I have no idea what we might run into, which is my issue with it. I will say I haven't been anywhere in two years and given my current work load it doesn't look good. I also don't have regular crew given my infrequent or odd sailing schedule so not really on the table anyway. But I'm sure as soon as I get one of these, that will all change.

 

I own a whole pile of Honda EU series inverter generators for my business. We don't do anything special to them - they get ethanol gas, we don't run the carb out of fuel, they sometimes sit for months. They work - every stinking' time. Just got a new EU7000 that is fuel injected - so far it's been awesome. Wish they would hurry up and put that tech into a small outboard.

Buy a Honda outboard?

 

Seriously, I race on a friends boat (FT 7.5) with a Torqeedo. Range is the issue. Great for getting out of the Marina, but doesn't have enough juice to get from one end of San Diego Bay to the other and back if the wind shuts down. A second charged battery as a spare would help, but is heavy if your racing. Ok, maybe from a transit the boat standpoint. Everything is a trade off.

 

Not sure the gas leaking into the bilge is any more serious for a portable generator onboard than it is for the gas powered outboard motor...gas in bilge is bad, but its bad no matter what the source (generator, outboard, leaking spare fuel tank, etc, etc)

 

crash, the second battery weighs about the same as a gallon and a half of gas. Granted, the 1.5 gallons is going to get you farther faster - still not much substitute for the energy density of fossil fuels compared to batteries, but in the grand scheme of what's on the boat, it's not really a bad addition. And I really liked knowing I had no flammable liquids (except maybe the rum) on board.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, you can get the solar panel to charge the battery. In full sun, I think they say you can operate the motor at half throttle on the solar panel.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a Torqeedo 1003 that I use on my FT 7.5. It easily moves the boat at hull speed at 3/4 throttle. Boat weighs 2150lbs. As stated above, the biggest drawback is the range. Don't run it at full throttle and you are okay. Running at 3/4 throttle I can get about an hour on a full charge. That is all I need for bay races. Offshore, I would want another battery in case the wind dies. The motor does tilt up enough to keep it out of the water unless the boat is heeled. I take it off and stow it when racing. I love how fast it is to set up and there is no drama with getting it running. Spray the pin contacts with a little electrolyte once in a while and it works every time. I looked at a propane motor, but didn't want the extra weight. The Torqueedo is much lighter than anything else out there and easy to handle since it is modular (motor, battery, tiller).

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the 1003L on my 30' Shields (weighs 4600 lbs) we use when the wind shuts down sailing in Narragansett Bay. It pushes it just fine and can get a 4-6 mile range out of it with 50% battery left

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 

 

I've been down every road imaginable with the gas stuff. New 100% gas, always add stabilizer. Cleaned out internal tank on engine, threw away old external. Brand new mix can, filled through filter funnel. Carb drained after each use. Doesn't matter - must be cursed. To add insult to injury, I bought the boat from a widow and it had not been sailed in over a year. Engine started on second pull with old gas in the tank (Florida). At that moment, I thought to myself "maybe this will be a good little engine". Fail.

 

For traveling stuff, I have no idea what we might run into, which is my issue with it. I will say I haven't been anywhere in two years and given my current work load it doesn't look good. I also don't have regular crew given my infrequent or odd sailing schedule so not really on the table anyway. But I'm sure as soon as I get one of these, that will all change.

 

I own a whole pile of Honda EU series inverter generators for my business. We don't do anything special to them - they get ethanol gas, we don't run the carb out of fuel, they sometimes sit for months. They work - every stinking' time. Just got a new EU7000 that is fuel injected - so far it's been awesome. Wish they would hurry up and put that tech into a small outboard.

Buy a Honda outboard?

 

Seriously, I race on a friends boat (FT 7.5) with a Torqeedo. Range is the issue. Great for getting out of the Marina, but doesn't have enough juice to get from one end of San Diego Bay to the other and back if the wind shuts down. A second charged battery as a spare would help, but is heavy if your racing. Ok, maybe from a transit the boat standpoint. Everything is a trade off.

 

Not sure the gas leaking into the bilge is any more serious for a portable generator onboard than it is for the gas powered outboard motor...gas in bilge is bad, but its bad no matter what the source (generator, outboard, leaking spare fuel tank, etc, etc)

crash, the second battery weighs about the same as a gallon and a half of gas. Granted, the 1.5 gallons is going to get you farther faster - still not much substitute for the energy density of fossil fuels compared to batteries, but in the grand scheme of what's on the boat, it's not really a bad addition. And I really liked knowing I had no flammable liquids (except maybe the rum) on board.

Concur. Only difference is as you burn gas, you remove weight. So if going a long way out to the race course and back, if carry gas, you've used up that 1.5 gals ins therefore that weight is gone. With a torqeedo, you have a dead battery to store, and the spare to get you home...

 

Don't get me wrong....I like them. Except when you need range. Then not as much.

Link to post
Share on other sites

crash, I was having the exact same conversation with a marine industry expert when I was looking at replacing my 1gm10. At the end of the day, your electrons don't weigh anything and so you're carrying all of your "fuel" regardless of SOC.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Few comments, OP hasn't said what the usual distance they need to go and what the max distance is? Since it's on a lake that would's be forever. If this is for use to get out to a race course and back can you ever get a tow? People do that around here when then need to go a longer distance then normal.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 months later...

Did anyone consider Fixed-Pod version of Torqeedo Cruise 2.0? We got tired of outboards overall no matter is it petrol or electrical one. There is no use for these on heavy sea, it is hard to maneuver by using rudder while having slow speed and all that heavy weight is hanging above the water on wrong side while sailing. So we fitted one to our old boat few weeks ago and we are extremely happy with that. It performed beyond our expectation. It had enough power to run the boat equally to the 5hp petrol outboard we had before. At least on calm sea. Against the wind it won’t reach to the hull speed but that is something we can live with. It is technically the same as the R(emote) version of Torqeedo Cruise but has a folding propeller and stays deep below the water, in front of the rudder. Now we can turn around our keel without having any speed, it does not pop out between waves nor does it drown and it’s weight is below the center of buoyancy. The only down-side is that it adds some extra drag. Manufacturer claims that it stays around 1% of total and I hope that it can be compensated with better balance.

post-121355-0-50935700-1470831721_thumb.jpg

 

Now something negative to compensate the praise. Despite the product is well engineered and hopefully serves us well for long time I don’t want to promote any of Torqeedo’s products. I have read some troubling comments written by unhappy customers that this company has problems with communication and responsibility. We choose it because there is really no alternative and we have a local supplier here. I would not recommend buying it without local supplier who can take the responsibility instead of them. And I advise anyone to inspect the completeness and correctness of the shipment with them before taking the boat out for installation. I will not list in details what went wrong but our carefulness paid off. Some bits were missing, some were manufactured in wrong shape and thanks to our local vendor we were able to sort it out quickly. Somehow I can accept the confusion because we were probably one of the earliest if not the first one to get it (outside Germany). What pisses me off is the arrogance of the manufacturer. No response of any kind to the request sent directly, no apologizes regarding delays or incomplete delivery. They act like they are correct in every way. So, if this company doesn’t do well, it is because they don’t understand the concept of PR.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a 1003 on my Fareast 23R and it's perfect for getting to the race course and back. I'm charging after every 3-4 round trips to the race course. I concur that it performs like a 3hp gas. I had a 4hp gas on the back of my Melges 24 and it did push it a bit faster. It's certainly lighter than a 4hp and actually lighter than most 2.5s (not many 3's on the market to check specs) so if you're leaving your motor on the back of the boat 'ready for immediate immersion' then it's nice to have a bit less weight there. I really enjoy the seamless transition from forward to backwards when getting in and out of the marina when single handing... definitely beats having to go for neutral and then spin the whole motor around like the small gassers have to do. Pretty much twice the price per pony of gas, but I never filled a gas engine without spilling some so this will help to straighten out my enviro-halo... or at least partially offset my motorcycles :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

I used a Torqeedo that I borrowed for a while. I am sailing a Corsair F-24, weighs about 1800lbs empty not sure how much junk is in it :-)

The Torqeedo 1003 was $1k of CL. At full throttle I t would push the boat at 5 plus, but only 2 mile range. At half throttle (500w) it would go 4 for an hour or so, about 4 miles, and on down the line. If you felt like going 2 knots, and there was no current I think I could get 6 miles out of it.

You can only hook up

100w of solar, but that would extend range by 20% at half throttle, or more if you motored and stopped for a while.

If you get the 2.0 with remote battery you could hook up

More solar or carry a generator to get half or full throttle while under way, only carrying that when you thought you'd need it. All that ends up

Being spendy unless you already own some of it: the battery generator or solar.

I really liked the quiet, light weight and lack of maintenance. I charged the battery off a small solar panel on board during the week and used it on the weekend if at all.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would not recommend buying it without local supplier who can take the responsibility...

+1

 

If nothing else the batteries can be a PIA ship. On the models where the control systems are in the battery box most of the bits that might need service are going to travel as hazmat.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

I have started putting aside a few boat bucks each month into a "Torqueedo Fund." I'm planning on the 1003, a spare battery and a remote throttle. I have probably mentioned that I sail a 27' H-Boat. It displaces 3,200 lbs., has a 7' beam, and is easily pushed by a 2 HP Honda. I sail on a lake, so current is not an issue.

 

The Honda has performed pretty well. Besides the electric bit, ease of maintenance, and no smelly gas, I'm drawn to the Torqueedo for the remote throttle. The H-Boat has a pretty long after deck. The Honda does not have N or R, so maneuvering into the slip can get pretty awkward. With the Torqueedo's R and the remote throttle, this should be much easier.

 

I think I may hang on to the Honda for "long" cruises.

 

Id360, did you buy one? If so, how is it doing?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm fed up with my Johnson 4hp 2 stroke - supposedly a really nice motor but my particular usage habits end up with it in a non-working state 99% of the time. I have my own business that is busy and sometimes don't touch the boat for a month or two. In that time, the motor bricks itself. At our club, the dry sailed boats have to maneuver out the furthest and you really need a motor for this - especially if you sail with newbies who barely know anything about sailing, nevermind trying to sail out of the docks. So this non-working motor situation means I don't get to take the boat out. Really depressing when you've been working for two months solid and just want to go for a damn sail and the f$&@#% motor won't fire. I'm out $500 from the last shop visit and again after one use it's bricked again. Low speed jet is clogged up and the starter cable guide broke.

 

So, I've been considering a Torqeedo to remedy this situation. Keeping the battery charged would be easy - just plug it up right next to my Tack Tick that I set in a window to keep charged and grab both before headed out.

 

Power wise, I'm a bit concerned the Torqeedo won't have anywhere near the same oomph, but at the same time I prefer to sail and really only use the motor for in and out of the docks, and the occasions jaunt back to the dock when the wind dies on the course. The boat is a 22', 2150lbs fully loaded plus people - so prob 2500lbs. Sailing on a lake with no appreciable current. So power wise it's probably not a big deal after all, just worried the occasional traveling regatta might be an issue.

 

The tiller situation of the Torqeedo is a big problem - the boat is a closed transom with a lifting bracket - so the fixed tiller of the Torqeedo would certainly be in contact with the stern and prevent the motor from being straight out. I have talked myself into the remote throttle control to remedy this situation, although I wish I didn't have to spend the extra money for that. Dear Torqeedo, it would be nice if this had a way to angle up!

 

So what are the current thoughts on the Torqeedos - specifically the Travel 1003? I read about some serious issues with early models but most of those seem to have been worked out over time.

 

Lastly, who has the deals on these things? Barring terrible reviews, I will probably pull the trigger on this early next week. Obviously will want to verify a current serial number, I have seen the sellers moving older versions at steep discounts.

You could also keep the OB and use aircraft fuel - I do this and never have any problems. It is ethanol free so you won't get gummy residue clogging the carburetor and filters. It will probably cost you $5-6 a gallon at your local airstrip but it is worth it

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

I see Torqueedo has a new spare battery on offer with 915 watt hours for $999. The standard battery has 520 watt hours for $699. Wouldn't that 915 WH just about double your range over the 520 WH?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hanse has taken the Torqeedo Pod into new level:

https://www.hansegroup.com/gb/home/company/news/detail/article/hanse-e-motion-rudder-drive.html

http://www.boatsales.com.au/editorial/news/2016/hanse-introduces-electric-e-motion-rudder-drive-57977

 

The rudder looks like this:

e_7fb43658a5.jpeg

 

It looks as it is the same unit that we installed in front of the rudder. We did consider similar solution but it meant too much work and would have made our rudder too heavy. This motor is heavier than our rudder and it its mass would been way off the turning center. So, this adds a lot of inertia which will kill the sensitivity. We are actually clad that we took the standard approach because this engine can develop enormous forces. The propeller wash strong enough to make tight turns like in promotion vido:

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see Torqueedo has a new spare battery on offer with 915 watt hours for $999. The standard battery has 520 watt hours for $699. Wouldn't that 915 WH just about double your range over the 520 WH?

Range is nice but make sure you have a charging setup that can refill these things as fast as your duty cycle requires it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just curious, has anyone done the alternative and used one of the Lehr propane units? Few torqueedo units at our club but can't make the full round trip to the course without the big battery. Propane seems easier from what I've read? Throw an extra coleman tank in or bring the grill tank for a dead cruise.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Lehrs are heavy, cheap Chinese pieces of shit. Yeah, I know the Chinese can make good stuff but the Lehrs aren't. Also, what problem is it really solving? A 1lb cylinder isn't big enough to be useful and a bigger tank is less convenient to carry and harder to refill than a gas can. Is it really that hard to run a gasoline carb dry if you'll be away from the boat for more than a week?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Several people have mentioned it, but your issue isn't the motor, it's the Monsanto/corn lobby that has forced ethanol into gas. I was wrestling with the same decision you are until I bought ethanol free gas from home depot and later from amazon. I cleaned the hell out of the carburetor in March and haven't had a problem yet. In prior years I would have had to clean it twice already.

There's likely more economical solutions, but these have served me well and I don't use enough to worry about the price gouging.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009QT1KLO/ref=sr_ph_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1477016007

 

Seafoam or Berryman's help too

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000CCMNAG/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

can any el motors recharge the battery under sail ?

 

They claim they can:

http://oceanvolt.com/create-energy-while-sailing

 

But this is as effective as airplain flying upside down. Propper hydrogenerator would be at least 10 times more effective.

 

But not all systems are designed to be driven backwards. Torqueedo tech support told us that allowing the motor (1003) to run backwards would damage the controller.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I see Torqueedo has a new spare battery on offer with 915 watt hours for $999. The standard battery has 520 watt hours for $699. Wouldn't that 915 WH just about double your range over the 520 WH?

Range is nice but make sure you have a charging setup that can refill these things as fast as your duty cycle requires it.

 

My re-charge will be taking the battery home and plugging in for the foreseeable future. I worry that I will get to the marina only to realize that I forgot the batteries at home. :angry:

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

can any el motors recharge the battery under sail ?

 

They claim they can:

http://oceanvolt.com/create-energy-while-sailing

 

But this is as effective as airplain flying upside down. Propper hydrogenerator would be at least 10 times more effective.

 

 

How do you define "10 times more effective"? Oceanvolt recharging curve shows higher power than any Watt&Sea model. So the problem is not getting as much current. So are you saying Oceanvolt system pruduces at leat 10 times more drag?

 

Say both are producing 200 W at 6 knots. At 100% efficiency that would mean 65 N resistance. Watt&Sea may reach 50% total efficiency, so it may have 130 N resistance. Are you saying Oceanvolt has at least 1300 N resistance (5% total efficiency) in those conditions? A 35' C/R boat would have 600-1000 N resistance at 6 knots. 130 N would slow it down by about 5%.1300 N is like having two similar boats on a tow. That would slow you down several knots at 6 knots.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Several people have mentioned it, but your issue isn't the motor, it's the Monsanto/corn lobby that has forced ethanol into gas. I was wrestling with the same decision you are until I bought ethanol free gas from home depot and later from amazon. I cleaned the hell out of the carburetor in March and haven't had a problem yet. In prior years I would have had to clean it twice already.

There's likely more economical solutions, but these have served me well and I don't use enough to worry about the price gouging.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009QT1KLO/ref=sr_ph_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1477016007

 

Seafoam or Berryman's help too

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000CCMNAG/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

Don't need to Home Despot, there are Ethanol free stations for collector cars, small engines, etc.

http://www.pure-gas.org/extensions/map.html

 

Unless you're in the city/long island. What the heck do you people put in your boats? OUCH.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 

 

can any el motors recharge the battery under sail ?

They claim they can:
http://oceanvolt.com/create-energy-while-sailing

But this is as effective as airplain flying upside down. Propper hydrogenerator would be at least 10 times more effective.

 

 

How do you define "10 times more effective"? Oceanvolt recharging curve shows higher power than any Watt&Sea model. So the problem is not getting as much current. So are you saying Oceanvolt system pruduces at leat 10 times more drag?

 

Say both are producing 200 W at 6 knots. At 100% efficiency that would mean 65 N resistance. Watt&Sea may reach 50% total efficiency, so it may have 130 N resistance. Are you saying Oceanvolt has at least 1300 N resistance (5% total efficiency) in those conditions? A 35' C/R boat would have 600-1000 N resistance at 6 knots. 130 N would slow it down by about 5%.1300 N is like having two similar boats on a tow. That would slow you down several knots at 6 knots.

 

 

Yes, by effectiveness I didn’t mean how powerful a generator solution can be but how much drag it creates per power unit. I agree, this “at least 10 times” might sound emotional guess. And maybe it is. I said it based on study that compares different propellers. By that a freely spinning fixed propeller adds 15% extra drag to the total hull restriction. This is huge compared to the small surface. The drag is generated by the curvature of the blades that are bending to the wrong side and making a lot of turbulence in the water. A low drag propeller for hydro generator has blades with inverted profile. The guess was that a proper hydro generator set adds only 1-1.5% of drag. At least I have heard similar figures about speed drop while using hydro generator. The formulas would be too complicated to put this into calculation. If you are not planning then near to the hull speed you might get similar speed drop by doubling the total drag. So, the quick comparing of known figures gave me that more than 10x.

 

Just propellers that are built for propulsion are not suitable for power generation. You need something more clever for that. A guidable feathering propeller for example.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 

 

 

can any el motors recharge the battery under sail ?

 

They claim they can:

http://oceanvolt.com/create-energy-while-sailing

 

But this is as effective as airplain flying upside down. Propper hydrogenerator would be at least 10 times more effective.

 

 

How do you define "10 times more effective"? Oceanvolt recharging curve shows higher power than any Watt&Sea model. So the problem is not getting as much current. So are you saying Oceanvolt system pruduces at leat 10 times more drag?

 

Say both are producing 200 W at 6 knots. At 100% efficiency that would mean 65 N resistance. Watt&Sea may reach 50% total efficiency, so it may have 130 N resistance. Are you saying Oceanvolt has at least 1300 N resistance (5% total efficiency) in those conditions? A 35' C/R boat would have 600-1000 N resistance at 6 knots. 130 N would slow it down by about 5%.1300 N is like having two similar boats on a tow. That would slow you down several knots at 6 knots.

 

 

Yes, by effectiveness I didn’t mean how powerful a generator solution can be but how much drag it creates per power unit. I agree, this “at least 10 times” might sound emotional guess. And maybe it is. I said it based on study that compares different propellers. By that a freely spinning fixed propeller adds 15% extra drag to the total hull restriction. This is huge compared to the small surface. The drag is generated by the curvature of the blades that are bending to the wrong side and making a lot of turbulence in the water. A low drag propeller for hydro generator has blades with inverted profile. The guess was that a proper hydro generator set adds only 1-1.5% of drag. At least I have heard similar figures about speed drop while using hydro generator. The formulas would be too complicated to put this into calculation. If you are not planning then near to the hull speed you might get similar speed drop by doubling the total drag. So, the quick comparing of known figures gave me that more than 10x.

 

Just propellers that are built for propulsion are not suitable for power generation. You need something more clever for that. A guidable feathering propeller for example.

 

 

Getting only 1-1.5% extra drag and decent ouput power is just not possible. That would be a perpetual motion machine. 1-1.5% is about 10 N for a 35' C/R boat at 6 knots. That equals only 30 W power and thus at 50% total efficiency (efficiency of propeller, generator, charging circuit, cables) 15 W electrical output. Thus totally useless for charging batteries of an electric motor.

 

1-1.5% speed drop equals to about double the drag. Still only around 30 W electrical output. That could well be true for Watt&Sea racing model. It is only advertised to give about 30 W at 6 knots http://www.wattandsea.com/sites/default/files/Watt%26Sea%20brochure%20GB%20-%202013-2014%20.pdf

 

Watt&Sea Cruising 600 with 280 mm propeller is advertised to give about 200 W at 6 knots. That's the one I was referring to earlier. It will likely have around 130 N drag and slow you down about 5%.

 

A 16x11 two bladed fixed Volvo Penta propeller has been measured to have 100 N drag free rotating and 200 N locked at 6 knots on a sail drive. That's without producing any power. While producing 200 W, I would estimate the drag to be 200-250 N. Thus about double to an optimal system at the same power.

 

The efficiency of a propeller as a generator is not that bad. Here are some measurements: http://www.plaisance-pratique.com/IMG/pdf/Authorrs_P-M-_MacKenzie_-_M-A-_Forrester_Sail_boat_Propeller_Drag10_sdarticle.pdf

You can see the normal propeller efficiency is up to 50% while motoring (Fig 7 a). You can calculate the generator efficiencies from Fig 7 b (not that KT and KQ are mixed) and get values around 30%.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see Torqueedo has a new spare battery on offer with 915 watt hours for $999. The standard battery has 520 watt hours for $699. Wouldn't that 915 WH just about double your range over the 520 WH?

I asked the Torqueedo people, and they said that the 915 has about double the range of the 520.

 

They have been pretty responsive to questions. Here's what they said I should expect for my boat (3,200 lb., 27') with the 520 battery, and double it for 915:

 

Speed Range Run Time

Slow 2.3 mph 23.0 miles 10:30

Half throttle 3.4 mph 12.1 miles 3:30

 

Full throttle 5.7 mph 3.2 miles 0:35

I think this seals it for me, especially if I sport for a 915 spare battery. With both, I would have ranges of 67 miles at Slow, 36 miles at Half, and almost 10 miles at Full.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pilot is maybe overstating the 10 to 1 but he is right about the foil camber that works for propulsion being inverted for for generation. I had the Electric Wheel motors on a cat I designed and built and standard props were not suited for hydro generation. I tried an AutoProp which lets its blades pivot through 180 degrees for backing and also allowed for proper camber and pitch for regeneration. Much better results powering and regenerating

Link to post
Share on other sites

Several people have mentioned it, but your issue isn't the motor, it's the Monsanto/corn lobby that has forced ethanol into gas. I was wrestling with the same decision you are until I bought ethanol free gas from home depot and later from amazon. I cleaned the hell out of the carburetor in March and haven't had a problem yet. In prior years I would have had to clean it twice already.

There's likely more economical solutions, but these have served me well and I don't use enough to worry about the price gouging.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009QT1KLO/ref=sr_ph_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1477016007

 

Seafoam or Berryman's help too

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000CCMNAG/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

If you go to your local airstrip you can get ethanol free gas at $5-6 per gallon - mucho cheaper than the canned stuff

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pilot is maybe overstating the 10 to 1 but he is right about the foil camber that works for propulsion being inverted for for generation. I had the Electric Wheel motors on a cat I designed and built and standard props were not suited for hydro generation. I tried an AutoProp which lets its blades pivot through 180 degrees for backing and also allowed for proper camber and pitch for regeneration. Much better results powering and regenerating

AutoProp is so different from anything else, that you shouldn't draw any conclusions from it. Regeneration with a folding propeller needs some special considerations. Oceanvolt spins it open first. Then you need to control the power you take from it in order to keep it well opened and get decent power. Did you have those systems?

 

AutoProp creates a lot of drag free spinning. In one test its drag was higher free spinning than a locked fixed blade propeller. Maybe it produces more power as well during regeneration, but certainly with more drag as well.

 

Marine propellers have very mild camber and profile, since cavitation needs to be avoided. For that reason they work almost as well during reverse or regeneration. Airplanes and wind power plants don't need to worry about cavitation and thus have quite different profiles. Going faster than speed of sound makes the profiles very different again.

Link to post
Share on other sites

You are all nuts!

 

If you are seriously considering the cost and complexity of getting enough range and power out of a battery outboard over the simplicity and reliability of a 3hp outboard, you have way too much time and money.

 

If you are so technically retarded that you can't maintain a modern 4 stroke outboard, you are also going to stuff up the torqueedo - no question.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Joakim,

 

Have you ever cruised and lived aboard a boat for months that used an AutoProp? Your comments have no bearing on what I posted. You are the one drawing conclusions based on what? Just because it is different? My statements are based on facts and figures on a fully outfitted installation with monitoring and logging.

Why would the spinning drag of an AutoProp be an issue if they feather under sail? Sure they have drag while spinning but that results in far more regen than a MaxProp with no camber. I fitted the AutoProp on just one side of a 50' cat which had a Michigan standard 3 blade and I could measure the amperage draw of each independently while motoring and re-generating and I assure you that the Auto Prop is superior on all considerations. Other that the fact it just looks goofy! At very low sailing speeds, the nature of the pivot means that the blade will not streamline and just hang down due to the weight of the blade and that was the only mark against it. Just a blip on the throttle would get it spinning and it could re-gen at surprisingly low speeds. The threshold that any power generating prop starts outputting power is a big consideration whether in water or air.

One of the best qualities of the AutoProp is that when motoring into a head sea it will adjust pitch constantly with the changes in load and speed and avoid cavitation. You can hear the tone of the blades change as it adjusts pitch. The fixed prop running under the same conditions can be heard beginning to cavitate and draws much more amperage to keep the boat on a steady course i.e. equal the drive of the AutoProp.

The amazing thing is that the owner of the boat balked at buying a pair of the AutoProps due to the cost after we had sailed and powered thousands of miles over several months with a borrowed 'spare' that I had begged to install to do a direct comparison. I would have done the same with a MaxProp but the owners attitude and reluctance for the facts made that unnecessary.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Joakim, where do you take these pulling forces at certain speed? 35' boat 600-1000N at 6 knots.
It is interesting to see that it adds up with Torqeedos announcement. They write that a 4kw motor can drive Hanse 315 up to 6.1 knots. And they claim that the overall efficiency is 56%. This means 2.24kw is needed to pull the boat. This makes 700N by my calculation.

Oceanvolt claims that the speed drop at 7 knots is only 0.1 knots if the generation is switched on. This makes only 1.4%. I cant read out how much power are they able to generate at this speed but by graph it looks well over the calculated figure - 15 watts. More like 200wats.
They also state that flexfold propeller is the key for efficiency and other can take it down up to 50%. This is the same propeller that Torqeedo uses for Fixed Pod-s. So, if regenerating energy with this propeller is so efficient then the question is justified - why isn't it possible with Torqeedo?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pilot,

 

I got all excited when I saw the first Torqeedo units and contacted them about using one as a self launch/sustainer drive on my little 290 lb Russia AC-4A sailplane. They said it might work only if I flew it in really heavy rain because immersion in water is the prime cooling for the motor. Still, one can dream!

 

808739Russia%20AC-4C.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

You are all nuts!

 

If yYou are seriously should considering the cost and complexity of getting enough range and power out of a battery outboard over the simplicity and reliability of a 3hp outboard, you have way too much time and money.

 

If you are so technically retarded that you can't maintain a modern 4 stroke outboard, you are also going to stuff up the torqueedo - no question.

Fixed.

 

I think the cost and complexity of the Torqueedo has been considerd. Yes, it has limitations, but it does provide some benefits over a 4-cycle gas outboard. Also, battery technology is always improving: The new 912 Wh battery has doubled the range of the motor.

Link to post
Share on other sites

So, if regenerating energy with this propeller is so efficient then the question is justified - why isn't it possible with Torqeedo?

In theory, it should be possible. However, I suspect the brushless dc motors and controllers they use would have to be modified to work as generators. Also, IIRC, the charge circuitry in the Torqueedo is fairly complex and separate from the drive circuitry. It balances each parallel bank and keeps track of SOC using a dedicated controller which will probably work best with good quality, consistent power. Just running current back from the motor into the battery without running it through the charge controller would be bad. Again, IIRC, I think the FETs in the motor controller prevent that from happening but it probably isn't good for them.

 

WAG: I don't think the initial design considered the case where the motors are towed behind a sailboat. So, regen didn't get designed in. An updated design for permanent installation in a yacht probably would include regen.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I could see the appeal of a small rotor that could be towed while under sail (or power) to provide a charge to any battery, that is separate from a motor. Does something like this exist?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I could see the appeal of a small rotor that could be towed while under sail (or power) to provide a charge to any battery, that is separate from a motor. Does something like this exist?

Yes, I think you're thinking of what they call towed generators. I don't think the numbers will make much sense for shorter voyages but YMMV.

 

Google: https://www.google.com/search?q=towed+generators+for+sailboats&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

also seppel, since you seem to be the only person who actually has one of these wee beasties, can you tell me if it can be tilted up and locked in place? Often there is a rule requiring the outboard to be mounted on the boat "ready for immediate immersion". I can't tell from any of the media if this is possible and if so can it be done without removing the tiller unit?

Yes no problem. I usually have the battery and tiller removed when daysailing. During a race I have the motor stored in the cabin of the boat, so it is almost ready for immediate immersion.

 

Exactly why we have one on our L7. The modular nature of the outboard makes it light enough that I like to take the whole thing off and store it in the cabin even for a 1 hour sail. And put it way in the cabin after a sail, even when I'm tired. I can't do that with any of the gas engines. Too heavy. Even the Honda 2 Hp's we had on the U20 were too heavy to take off and store. So they got stolen. And that as when I was in my 40's. The Torqeedo is making it possible to be in my 60's and enjoy a small boat with an outboard. I have an extra battery and a roll up solar panel. And we live in a sunny area.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Joakim, where do you take these pulling forces at certain speed? 35' boat 600-1000N at 6 knots.

It is interesting to see that it adds up with Torqeedos announcement. They write that a 4kw motor can drive Hanse 315 up to 6.1 knots. And they claim that the overall efficiency is 56%. This means 2.24kw is needed to pull the boat. This makes 700N by my calculation.

 

Oceanvolt claims that the speed drop at 7 knots is only 0.1 knots if the generation is switched on. This makes only 1.4%. I cant read out how much power are they able to generate at this speed but by graph it looks well over the calculated figure - 15 watts. More like 200wats.

They also state that flexfold propeller is the key for efficiency and other can take it down up to 50%. This is the same propeller that Torqeedo uses for Fixed Pod-s. So, if regenerating energy with this propeller is so efficient then the question is justified - why isn't it possible with Torqeedo?

I have my own VPP program based on Delft series to calculate drag. 600 N is for downwind/motoring and 1000 N is for upwind including windage and resistance due to leeway, heel and waves. I don't think Torqeedo gets 56% overall efficiency at full power. Hanse is a smaller boat and most likely has a bit under 600 N at 6.1 knots.

 

Note that the 0.1 knots claim is for 40' C/R boat with a very small 15" propeller while the power generation curve is for a 45' catamaran, with probably a much larger propeller. At 7 knots that 40' boat will have about 1300 N drag for downwind/motoring. With only 0.1 knot speed drop they can't produce more than 60W with that system. It is impossible to measure a 0.1 knots speed drop while sailing. Just too many variables. So maybe they are producing more with a larger speed drop?

 

In that Torqeedo link you gave about the rudder propulsion they claim regeneration with a folding propeller. Oceanvolt is not the first to do so. In Sweden they had a system for that more than ten years ago. I think it is the same techology now marketed by Greenstar

Here is another one

 

You have to make some rather expensive electronics to allow efficient charging from a hydrogenerator. That's why Watt&Sea is so expensive. I actually began to design a competing system to Watt&Sea, but there are already few others on the market so I thought it is not worth the effort. The problem is that the BLDC motors used in these (also in Watt&Sea!) don't work like alternators in car producing nice constant voltage. Their voltage depends on load and especially on rpm. And the voltage is lower for regeneration than propulsion. So you need a charging system that can operate on a very large input voltage range (say 3-50 V) and output (both boost and reduce) the correct charging voltage with good efficiency. These are not cheap and easy to make at high power (600 W for Watt&Sea, 4 kW for Oceanvolt).

 

It is also important to match the propeller to the motor and the speed range of a boat while sailing. You need to get the voltages right and also you must be careful not to exceed the maximum rpm of the motor. With a fast boat at some point you will have to start braking the propeller in order not to make too much power, voltage or exceed the maximim rpm.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Joakim,

Have you ever cruised and lived aboard a boat for months that used an AutoProp? Your comments have no bearing on what I posted. You are the one drawing conclusions based on what? Just because it is different? My statements are based on facts and figures on a fully outfitted installation with monitoring and logging.

 

No I have newer used an AutoProp, just read a lot of test results about it. I have nothing against it (except high sailing drag compared to folding propellers). I just meant that it is very diffrent and its behaviour during propulsion and regeneration is mostly caused by automatic pitch changes. So you can't draw conclusions from it about how important it is to have the profile in designed direction.

 

I haven't seen any measurements about AutoProp in regeneration. In propulsion it is good, but not exceptional. It works very differently to all others, but doesn't have superior efficiency. Here are some efficiecy curves, here are some measured consumptions and here some more.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The 915 Wh battery makes the Torqueedo 1003 more attractive. I thought it would be great if I could buy a Torqueedo with the 915 Wh battery, instead of the 530 Wh standard battery. It might eliminate the need for a spare battery. No luck. Torqueedo has decided not to do that, even with an upcharge.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I got all excited when I saw the first Torqeedo units and contacted them about using one as a self launch/sustainer drive on my little 290 lb Russia AC-4A sailplane. They said it might work only if I flew it in really heavy rain because immersion in water is the prime cooling for the motor. Still, one can dream!

I have been thinking the same thing but 4kW is barely enough for sustainer and I am aware of cooling problems. They have strange design where the rotor with permanent magnets rotates around the stator that has coils. So these coils are quite well isolated and the cooling must be really effective.

In the other hand a sailboat motor could be designed like the engine of Antares 20E. Or like the newest trend of wind generators - with hollow stator. This way you can widen the diameter of the engine without increasing the resistance too much. Integrated folding propeller can have more blades and some blades can be forced to fold inward.

Link to post
Share on other sites

In that Torqeedo link you gave about the rudder propulsion they claim regeneration with a folding propeller.

This is something new. Somehow I missed it. They have said before that this is not possible. But my local supplier promised to find out how this is achieved if at all. It looks more like something that they are hoping to develop during the winter.

 

I actually began to design a competing system to Watt&Sea, but there are already few others on the market so I thought it is not worth the effort.

Don't give up! If you have second thoughts about this let me know. I have ideas how to fill a hole in the market that is so far unseen. An electric motor/generator is quite common thing but there are ways how to make it more attractive and easier to install. Especially for longer voyages.

 

The problem is that the BLDC motors used in these (also in Watt&Sea!) don't work like alternators in car producing nice constant voltage. Their voltage depends on load and especially on rpm. And the voltage is lower for regeneration than propulsion. So you need a charging system that can operate on a very large input voltage range (say 3-50 V) and output (both boost and reduce) the correct charging voltage with good efficiency. These are not cheap and easy to make at high power (600 W for Watt&Sea, 4 kW for Oceanvolt).

We made plans how to install a marine diesel generator so that we get 24v out of it instead of 220. In the end it turns out that the easiest, cheapest and the lightest way is to generate 220v and to use a power adapter to get the charging power. There are adapters available up to 3kw and can handle wide range of voltage 90-260 VAC. So I think the higher voltage is the right path for hydro-generators as well.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

There are some serious issues with the Torqeedo 1003 (other than range) that need mentioning. I have had mine for more than two years now and continue to use it because I have to - no internal combustion engines are allowed on the lake where I sail my 20ft boat.

 

1. It is not robust - stress cracks have appeared in the plastic casing of the throttle and both batteries. Also, it is too easy to damage the large and flimsy two-bladed plastic propeller

2. It was not really designed to be in contact with seawater (Torqeedo are based on the freshwater Bodensee). There are two electrical plugs and sockets to screw together and if exposed to sea air, contact becomes progressively less reliable. In addition, on earlier versions there is a washer in the propeller assembly that needed replacing annually, otherwise it tended to fail. Apparently this has now been remedied.

3. Although it lacks the vibration of a gas outboard, the high pitched whining noise emitted by the reduction gearbox is really, and I mean REALLY, intrusive. Quiet it is not. This is odd, as both the motor and the gearbox are well under water.

4. If you need to drive your boat against wind and current for any length of time, you'll be in trouble quicker than you might expect. Torqeedo claim that the 1003 is equivalent to 3hp. That's probably correct for about an hour at reasonably full throttle but then the battery runs out and (unless you have a very expensive spare) your motor is 0hp. There are various ways of extending range but if you need quite a lot of power (because you're driving against wind and current), the battery's charge will drop very much faster than it can be replaced and your efforts will make little difference.

 

I'm not alone with these observations. The forum for my class of boat has quite a few similar complaints. My feeling about Torqeedo is that they're very busy with their high end motors and hybrid drives and that development of the smaller 503 and 1003 motors is not far up their agenda. The new higher capacity battery is to be welcomed but is very expensive and, in the UK at least, is not yet available. Given advances in cell technology, they could have brought it to market much sooner.

 

More competition is needed in this market segment, I feel. They've had it more or less to themselves for much too long.

Link to post
Share on other sites

There are some serious issues with the Torqeedo 1003 (other than range) that need mentioning. I have had mine for more than two years now and continue to use it because I have to - no internal combustion engines are allowed on the lake where I sail my 20ft boat.

 

I've used a 1003 on a bigger boat, over a longer period of time, on the ocean and I much prefer it to the Tohatsu that is still kept as a backup.

 

1. It is not robust - stress cracks have appeared in the plastic casing of the throttle and both batteries. Also, it is too easy to damage the large and flimsy two-bladed plastic propeller

 

The whole thing does feel a bit flimsy to me. There are lots of plastic bits.

 

Still, we've got three batteries. The cases are glass reinforced plastic (15% IIRC) and none of them have shown any cracking. The tiller assy is original and also not cracked though it is showing signs of UV exposure. The prop also original and in okay shape given its age.

 

.

2. It was not really designed to be in contact with seawater (Torqeedo are based on the freshwater Bodensee). There are two electrical plugs and sockets to screw together and if exposed to sea air, contact becomes progressively less reliable. In addition, on earlier versions there is a washer in the propeller assembly that needed replacing annually, otherwise it tended to fail. Apparently this has now been remedied.

Yeah, this. We've had problems with the contacts and the cables. Also, the motor clamps and magnet for the kill switch have suffered from salt despite very careful rinsing after every use.

 

Not sure about the washer. IIRC, we never changed it but then we had the whole motor rebuilt.

 

 

3. Although it lacks the vibration of a gas outboard, the high pitched whining noise emitted by the reduction gearbox is really, and I mean REALLY, intrusive. Quiet it is not. This is odd, as both the motor and the gearbox are well under water.

In our case, the 1003 is much, much quieter than the gas motor it replaces. Lots of people have commented on this when we take them sailing, so it's not just my ears. There is gear noise but it is not intrusive at all. I wonder if there is something in your setup that resonates?

 

 

4. If you need to drive your boat against wind and current for any length of time, you'll be in trouble quicker than you might expect. Torqeedo claim that the 1003 is equivalent to 3hp. That's probably correct for about an hour at reasonably full throttle but then the battery runs out and (unless you have a very expensive spare) your motor is 0hp. There are various ways of extending range but if you need quite a lot of power (because you're driving against wind and current), the battery's charge will drop very much faster than it can be replaced and your efforts will make little difference.

 

Yep. The range is limited even in calm conditions without current. We use the gas motor if we need to move the boat any distance under power. It can be re-fueled under way and it is more powerful. I'm skeptical that the 1003 can produce the power or thrust of a typical 3hp gas engine. IIRC, the 1003 is something like 500 watts at the prop which is where I believe outboards are rated. The method that converts that to 3hp is ...? We get notably more speed and acceleration out of the gas motor.

 

.

I'm not alone with these observations. The forum for my class of boat has quite a few similar complaints. My feeling about Torqeedo is that they're very busy with their high end motors and hybrid drives and that development of the smaller 503 and 1003 motors is not far up their agenda. The new higher capacity battery is to be welcomed but is very expensive and, in the UK at least, is not yet available. Given advances in cell technology, they could have brought it to market much sooner.

More competition is needed in this market segment, I feel. They've had it more or less to themselves for much too long.

Agreed that there should be more competition. The functional parts of the 1003 are all off the shelf. The electronics are good quality and well done but there's no secret sauce in there.

 

To be fair, they have been upgrading the batteries with new cells and new chargers. We've got three generations of batteries and they've gotten progressively better.

 

In our service, the 1003 is significantly more pleasant to use than the gas motor. It is much quieter, cleaner, odorless and reliable. We find it makes the experience of going for a sail better. It does have costs and gas does some things that it can not. All in all, it's nice to have but not critical.

 

Sorry about the "code" tags. The forum editor informs me that I may not use that many "quote" tags.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I was caught out at sea in an F7/F8 this summer but managed to sail most of the way back to the marina before dropping the sails and putting the Torqeedo on full throttle to get back inside. It was against the wind and I made virtually no progress because the Torqeedo's thrust wasn't up to the job. Eventually, I was left with 3% charge and had to grab a moored boat and hang on until I was rescued by the safety boat. Identical boats with 2.5hp Suzuki petrol outboards managed to get back inside without such problems. Never again!

 

I hadn't considered rule69's suggestion about resonance with my set up. The motor is currently back at the dealer for a service (including getting the propeller's dodgy thrust washer replaced) and I've asked them to look at the whine. If they haven't managed to fix it when I get it back, I'll try isolating the motor clamps with rubber pads front and back to see if that makes any difference. My boat has an enclosed outboard well ahead of the rudder - perhaps it is acting like a large loudhailer. I've measured the noise at nearly 90dB at full throttle and I've read that if the noise is high-pitched, it can sound 20-30% louder to the human ear. I can well believe it!

 

I see that ePropulsion claim that their Torqeedo 1003 look-alike makes only 60dB of noise.

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you go to your local airstrip you can get ethanol free gas at $5-6 per gallon - mucho cheaper than the canned stuff

 

 

Eth-free is widely available around Myrtle Beach for a buck more than regular regular. Anywhere else with mobs of outboards should be similar.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

In that Torqeedo link you gave about the rudder propulsion they claim regeneration with a folding propeller.

This is something new. Somehow I missed it. They have said before that this is not possible. But my local supplier promised to find out how this is achieved if at all. It looks more like something that they are hoping to develop during the winter.

 

Got conformation from Torqeedo that this is only question of software update and no additional hardware is required. Now I have to wait the spring to see how it performs.
Link to post
Share on other sites

avgas and outboard go back to reliable as they once were

 

Be aware that avgas has lead in it... In British Columbia at least, marked/offroad fuel does not contain any ethanol according to my gas station.

 

:D

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm planning to get a Torqueedo 1003 in a few months. Some questions for owners.

 

1) I think it make sense to store it in the cabin when the boat is in the slip. I'm thinking security and UV protection. It looks pretty easy on the video. Is that the case?

 

2) How do you re-charge? Leave it on the boat from shore power? Take it home? Is it a PITA to lug back and forth?

 

3) What about the noise level? My Honda 2 HP is air-cooled and makes a racket. I'm hoping the 1003 will be quieter.

 

Thanks.

 

(I am so tired of my gas OB, the gas smell, getting it on my hands, little drips of the stuff, yanking the starter cord, and so on and so forth.)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm planning to get a Torqueedo 1003 in a few months. Some questions for owners.

 

1) I think it make sense to store it in the cabin when the boat is in the slip. I'm thinking security and UV protection. It looks pretty easy on the video. Is that the case?

 

2) How do you re-charge? Leave it on the boat from shore power? Take it home? Is it a PITA to lug back and forth?

 

3) What about the noise level? My Honda 2 HP is air-cooled and makes a racket. I'm hoping the 1003 will be quieter.

 

Thanks.

 

(I am so tired of my gas OB, the gas smell, getting it on my hands, little drips of the stuff, yanking the starter cord, and so on and so forth.)

 

1) easy.

 

2) the battery fits in a small backpack and we carry it home.

 

3) at moderate throttle levels it is very quiet. At full throttle it probably isn't as loud as a 2 stroke in the same state but its high pitch may be more annoying to some. The loudness wrt throttle seems logarithmic so dropping a bit off the throttle makes it a lot quieter IME.

Link to post
Share on other sites

On the question of noise, I'm told that 1003's made in 2013 (including mine) tend to suffer from excessive noise levels. Something to do with the electric motor being too large and doing stuff to the gearbox, especially after it has been used for a while. This would explain why I complain about an appalling high-pitched whining noise from my 1003 whereas others think that their motor is quiet. Post 2013, a different motor was used and this quietened things down considerably, so I'm informed.

 

So, if you're considering buying a 1003 second hand, find out when it was made and definitely test it for noise.

 

Bull City, if you're buying new and are not in a hurry, I suggest delaying until the new larger battery (915Wh) is included as standard. A battery nearly twice as powerful as the current one in the same sized case is worth waiting for. As any Torqeedo owner will tell you, if the motor is used a lot, you will inevitably suffer from range anxiety sooner or later. A much bigger battery goes some way towards reducing this downside of swapping from petrol.

Link to post
Share on other sites