The future of diesel inboards in an all electric future

TJSoCal

Super Anarchist
Until the hydrogen economy arrives, if ever, an elegant solution for long distance sailors could be a very small, quiet, petroleum-fueled engine. Something elegant. 3 to 10 hp could be plenty with a battery-electric drive. Something is amiss with the marine diesel generator offerings as they tend to be complicated, noisy, and expensive. Think a “Honda” generator but without the volatile gasoline.
I've got one of those little suitcase generators with duel-fuel capability. It will run on gas but also propane which may be more suitable for a boat, especially if you've already got propane plumbed in for cooking.
 

NicoW

New member
2
1
So I was reading an article today about the upcoming bans on combustion engines in new cars and it got me thinking about inboards.
The EU are saying all new sales must be electric from 2035, the UK before that at 2030.

Now this doesn't apply to boats yet (as far as I'm aware), but it can't be too long before legislators turn their eyes towards leisure boating and the emissions we produce, naturally we're in a better position than power boaters, but I'm sure all of us have plugged away for hours under engine to make a tidal gate / make progress when there's no wind, or just to get back in time for work.

The 45 litre tank on my small 27'er will keep me going for at least 40 hours steaming, at a weight of just 45kg.
As far as I'm aware, even the best battery techs aren't close to that yet, and they come with some pretty big safety concerns. LifeP04 I'd probably need close to 500kg of batteries to get the same performance.
For lake sailors and day sailors it's probably an easy switch, for coastal sailors less so.

I'm wondering what people think is going to be the future of the inboard? Better as yet not released battery tech? Hydrogen? Biofuels?
Most of our current engines are modified tractor engines, no?

So as long as we need tractors, meaning as long as people gotta eat, we will just install whatever they will use.
 
So I was reading an article today about the upcoming bans on combustion engines in new cars and it got me thinking about inboards.
The EU are saying all new sales must be electric from 2035, the UK before that at 2030.

Now this doesn't apply to boats yet (as far as I'm aware), but it can't be too long before legislators turn their eyes towards leisure boating and the emissions we produce, naturally we're in a better position than power boaters, but I'm sure all of us have plugged away for hours under engine to make a tidal gate / make progress when there's no wind, or just to get back in time for work.

The 45 litre tank on my small 27'er will keep me going for at least 40 hours steaming, at a weight of just 45kg.
As far as I'm aware, even the best battery techs aren't close to that yet, and they come with some pretty big safety concerns. LifeP04 I'd probably need close to 500kg of batteries to get the same performance.
For lake sailors and day sailors it's probably an easy switch, for coastal sailors less so.

I'm wondering what people think is going to be the future of the inboard? Better as yet not released battery tech? Hydrogen? Biofuels?
Midday,

If you have any questions about going electric, I'm happy to answer as best I can. I've sailed across the Atlantic in an electric boat. And, in a 22,000 pound boat, I've used 65% of a battery bank that weighed 488 pounds (280 kg) to go 60 miles so I doubt you would need 500 kg of batteries on a 27'er.
 

seandepagnier

New member
Midday,

If you have any questions about going electric, I'm happy to answer as best I can. I've sailed across the Atlantic in an electric boat. And, in a 22,000 pound boat, I've used 65% of a battery bank that weighed 488 pounds (280 kg) to go 60 miles so I doubt you would need 500 kg of batteries on a 27'er.
Thanks for real numbers.

I dont think 60 miles is very good for 280kg battery. Can you give details for power required vs speed?

For example, on my 33ft boat, it uses 120 watts (9.5 amps 13 volts) to motor at 2 knots. I have 10lb (5 kg battery) I think it is not really reasonable to have huge batteries as this leads to inequality and facilitates inefficiency.

I can motor just off solar as it is, 120 watts is not a lot of area. To go 3 knots it takes twice the power but honestly I can sail. Since the boat sails 7 knots in 7 knots of wind for example, and can go above hull speed, for example 10 knots speed in 15 knots of wind. It can arrive much sooner than most displacement boats with engines. If it really were about getting places faster an engine is not the best change to make first.

Instead, I think the engine is really to facilitate incompetence. Then if the engine breaks people bother to try and fix wasting much more time than it would take to tack in and out of the places they sail to instead. Well, dont worry, because with electric, you can use it in bursts to maintain control without damaging the engine, but also gain the experience to tack through canals. You cant just turn diesel engine on and off lots of times it will be bad for it. With electric, you only use it if you make a mistake sailing in narrow places. Now you can sail anywhere without much experience and not worry, sail up rivers etc, so electric (unlike diesel) potentially enables sail to be used more effectively than before yet using minimal power easily supplied from a few panels.
 

Rasputin22

Rasputin22
14,126
3,670
our cultural commitment to allocating resources

Glad to see you didn't squander any resources on web masters or graphics...
 

seandepagnier

New member
The diesels most people use in sailboats are already illegal on the road because non-common rail engines pollute horribly. People need to chill out. These bans aren't going to hit sailboats until most people have already completely switched over. The stop gap will be dirt cheap electric propulsion with a common rail generator.

I'm already an ocean cruiser with solar-electric only. Generator-electric replaces diesel already, and no laws are going to force you to rip a working diesel out of your boat.
They absolutely could pass a law forbidding you from running the engine in that country. For example, customs sealing the exhaust the way they lock guns etc. If you are somehow caught running it: it could be a violation.

Eventually it may also be illegal to sell a boat with a diesel engine in it, who knows. Or maybe the law is written differently and diesel engines are allowed but nowhere you can buy diesel anymore, and canola oil is $100 per gallon (some of that is inflation but lets say $30 in dollars today)
 

seandepagnier

New member
Stored hydrogen is not safer than propane. Hydrogen is a small molecule and tanks/lines required are MUCH more expensive and the seals/o-rings much more high maintenance than propane. Either can be highly explosive and "dangerous" with leaks or other issues. Homebrew hydrogen systems could be quite dangerous. Either can be safe with proper maintenance and systems. Hydrogen as "green" - (either burning it or putting it through a fuel cell) is a scam. You are better off using the excess of PV to power an electric cooking element (or charge batteries to be used later) than burning hydrogen. Th
ink about it- to produce hydrogen you're talking about using electricity to split water- there is no free energy.

You made a whole bunch of incorrect and false assumptions.

First you said about splitting water? Who said water? Bacteria break urine down into ammonia. Electrolyzing ammonia has a net energy gain of several times. What that means is the electricity needed to split it into hydrogen is a fraction of the energy in the hydrogen unlike splitting water where you get less than you put in, though researchers have managed 98% efficiency which is quite remarkable, cheaper electrolyzers can get 70% which is quite usable even from water.

Next confusion about "you are better doing" blah.. Do you use hydrogen? No. Do you really know anything about hydrogen?

You are wrong about expensive tanks. There are different ways to store hydrogen, but non-pressurized bladder is the most efficient and it doesnt cost hardly anything either. The energy figures work out and you can run a cooking stove this way. It only needs to store energy for few days cooking.

Also... I have a huge storage area (outer hulls in trimaran) which cant carry weight, but hydrogen is negative weight. I can store the equivalent of 16kwh using a small part of this otherwise wasted space. Any idea what a 16kwh battery weighs, and costs, and only lasts so long? This is a way cheaper way to store energy. It makes the boat lighter when full (what other fuel does that??) And it is much safer than propane because if it leaks out it floats away.

Your forth incorrect assumption is that I want to cook when PV is available or that my batteries can support cooking. They cant. It is hard on the battery, but not hard on the hydrogen storage system which (as mentioned) produces more heat than a heating element on electric anyway because of the energy gain from using urine.
 
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a8b

Member
87
28
They absolutely could pass a law forbidding you from running the engine in that country. For example, customs sealing the exhaust the way they lock guns etc. If you are somehow caught running it: it could be a violation.

Eventually it may also be illegal to sell a boat with a diesel engine in it, who knows. Or maybe the law is written differently and diesel engines are allowed but nowhere you can buy diesel anymore, and canola oil is $100 per gallon (some of that is inflation but lets say $30 in dollars today)
This is bonkers crazy.

Diesel is fuel oil. It is ubiquitious. But, resonable substitutions, with slight modification, is literaly any food oil, including used fryer fat.

If they can overturn Roe, anything can happen, but banning the burning of oil, in the usa? We will all be dead first.

You made a whole bunch of incorrect and false assumptions.

First you said about splitting water? Who said water? Bacteria break urine down into ammonia. Electrolyzing ammonia has a net energy gain of several times. What that means is the electricity needed to split it into hydrogen is a fraction of the energy in the hydrogen unlike splitting water where you get less than you put in, though researchers have managed 98% efficiency which is quite remarkable, cheaper electrolyzers can get 70% which is quite usable even from water.

Next confusion about "you are better doing" blah.. Do you use hydrogen? No. Do you really know anything about hydrogen?

You are wrong about expensive tanks. There are different ways to store hydrogen, but non-pressurized bladder is the most efficient and it doesnt cost hardly anything either. The energy figures work out and you can run a cooking stove this way. It only needs to store energy for few days cooking.

Also... I have a huge storage area (outer hulls in trimaran) which cant carry weight, but hydrogen is negative weight. I can store the equivalent of 16kwh using a small part of this otherwise wasted space. Any idea what a 16kwh battery weighs, and costs, and only lasts so long? This is a way cheaper way to store energy. It makes the boat lighter when full (what other fuel does that??) And it is much safer than propane because if it leaks out it floats away.

Your forth incorrect assumption is that I want to cook when PV is available or that my batteries can support cooking. They cant. It is hard on the battery, but not hard on the hydrogen storage system which (as mentioned) produces more heat than a heating element on electric anyway because of the energy gain from using urine.
Fuck right off.

Hydrogen, stored in hulls. It is only lighter if it displaces oxygen, and if you add any pressure, it is heavier.
But a whole hollow boat of hydrogen (a sentence no one ever thought to say) has the energy of a dry fart. You have to compress the fuck out of hydrogen to get very shitty energy density.

And your hollow boat cannot take the shitty energy density pressure and not explode, not to mention the very expensive energy and equipment to compress it to almost not shitty.

Fuck right off.
 

Fah Kiew Tu

Curmudgeon, First Rank
10,442
3,511
Tasmania, Australia
Hydrogen, stored in hulls. It is only lighter if it displaces oxygen, and if you add any pressure, it is heavier.
But a whole hollow boat of hydrogen (a sentence no one ever thought to say) has the energy of a dry fart. You have to compress the fuck out of hydrogen to get very shitty energy density.

And your hollow boat cannot take the shitty energy density pressure and not explode, not to mention the very expensive energy and equipment to compress it to almost not shitty.

Fuck right off.

Have to agree with all of that.

I'd also have to question the urine->ammonia->electrolysis->hydrogen bit.

The poster is undoubtedly full of shit, but full of piss as well? Maybe he has yellow eyes, dunno.

All that rubbish reads like someone has done a quick google and spewed out things with no comprehension of them.

How do you seal the hulls to prevent H2 leakage? What do you use? What pressure is your storage vessel at?

How do you transfer H2 from your tank full of piss to your storage tank? How much energy does this use?

How do you transfer the H2 back to where it does useful work? What materials do you use? How do you seal against leaks? What's the plan to deal with H2 embrittlement of any metals in contact with the gas? Do you know what sorts of metals that requires, and their cost?

Some of this shit actually does work, in shore-based situations like piggeries, dairy farms and mass collections of humans. But TOTALLY different scale to small cruising boats, and doesn't scale down worth a damn.

I'll stick with my 100+ year old diesel tech until these problems get solved by something approaching off the shelf engineering equipment.

FKT
 
Just saying in passing, to whoever was worried about hydrogen accumulating in an upside-down "pool" under a curved cabin top... don't worry.

The challenge with hydrogen, the almost unbeatable challenge, is trying to keep it from escaping. It's 100x better at escaping than Houdini. The technology needed to keep hydrogen captive without leakage is... well highly-engineered, and super-low-tolerance, and often damned heavy and clunky. And yes you have to compress the stuff (like LPG but more so) to use it as fuel.

In a marine environment, in a small boat? Nah. Maybe on some monstrous futuristic gigayacht or contship, but not in anyone's 30-40 footer. At least, I'd be very surprised if it could be made to work, let's put it that way.
 

purvisgs

New member
12
8
People have been selling snake oil "systems" where you can produce your own hydrogen by adding some proprietary powder, catalyst, salts, or whatever to water & then run a small amount of current though it since (at least) the 80's. Sounds like boat-alexandria bought into one of these (or wants to). Sure you could run one of these setups, collect hydrogen and perhaps run your cooking stove on it. But efficiency wise you'd be better off using an electric heating element directly to cook with. Maybe you could pee in the system too, why not.

They want to fill up their tri's amas with big tanks of hydrogen. Much safer than propane, sure. Not that there would be any way to realistically produce that much- but sounds safe to me.

There may be research or youtube videos about some new potential science, catalyst, anode or membrane on an experimental scale that shows some promise, but there is no magic bullet or viable systems out there that accomplish this in an efficient way. Don't you think the big players would jump on it if there was ANY potential here? 99% of the hydrogen out there today comes from fossil fuels & is distributed or sold by major oil companies. Perhaps in the 90s it looked like a promising technology but by the ealy 2000's it was more than clear that batteries were going to win out. Even the big oil/gas companies who are currently making $ producing it don't love the stuff, they've seen the writing on the wall that it's a dead end. Toyota had to subsidize the fuel cost to even sell -what - a couple hundred hydrogen cars over the last 5-7 years- in California. Big waste of public money on the whole show.
 

MiddayGun

Super Anarchist
1,191
450
Yorkshire
First up this thread seems to have shot up in views? Maybe because of that 'top threads' email we all received?

Midday,

If you have any questions about going electric, I'm happy to answer as best I can. I've sailed across the Atlantic in an electric boat. And
in a 22,000 pound boat, I've used 65% of a battery bank that weighed 488 pounds (280 kg) to go 60 miles so I doubt you would need 500 kg of batteries on a 27'er.

That sounds like a fun experience, but we have different situations.
Generally when I get away on the boat, I have a couple of weeks or more, so often if I want to make some progress then I don't have the luxury of always waiting for ideal conditions.
With no wind I can rely on about 5.5knots from the engine at cruising revs or about 1l per hour.

If I work on leaving 5l in the bottom of the tank, that gives me a range of 220 miles, I could get even more if I went slower, but that's a good compromise. It allows me to get back for work, make tidal gates if the wind drops etc.
My boat sails well so most the time I don't need it, but its nice to be there.

Where I sail the tides are pretty fierce. 3-4 knots on neaps and 4-7 knots on springs, its nice to be able to plug against it if I fall short of my destination before high water. 3 hours after HW, there is nowhere else to go and on a previous boat I ran out of petrol and had anchor until the next flood and to pull a sicky at work :D.
The engine is the original that I top end rebuilt when I bought her. So for maybe 60-100 litres diesel a year and a service, it makes no economic sense to change to electric.

Of course for others, electric is the perfect solution, but for me, it doesn't match my requirements.

but most of all they are not needed, since there are sails, and recreational boats are not even essential.

If you ban everything that pollutes because its 'non essential' then there's not going to be much left.
Getting the lithium for your batteries, the shipping to get it to where you are, most likely your boat itself, the equipment on it, the device you wrote that post on, all have a carbon and pollution cost. And despite them not being needed because you have sails, you still have an electric drive.
You owning a boat isn't essential either yet you still do.

It's a strange point to make, I think most of us like the idea of a quiet electric drive and no diesel fumes, but right now electric can't compete from a weight / range point or a cost point.

In fact engine-free sailors are much less likely to be rescued.
Needs citation.
 

Sailabout

Super Anarchist
I notice coal making a huge comeback at the moment, both thermal and coking.
I have been out of thermal coal for a long time but long on coking coal, all this new tech just loves coking coal.
 

Santanasailor

Charter Member. Scow Mafia
1,360
710
North Louisiana
I don’t mean to sound sarcastic but in reality, hydrogen is the energy source of the future. At this time, packing hydrogen in anything like a moveable vehicle (outside of maybe a ship the size of one of these new cruise ships) is not just impractical it plainly may be impossible. As was said, hydrogen makes Houdini’s look like a piker.

As far as mixing urine, powder of sorts to water makes plenty of hydrogen that you can store in your 20 foot Santana is a bit of alchemy.

And speaking of alchemy…If you put five pounds of lead in a bucket, add a gallon of fresh urine, (fresh stuff, not that mess you would bail out of a truck stop unrial that someone forgot to flush) throw in some moth balls, and wait ten hours, then dig the solid mass out of the mixture (good latex gloves would be nice) and then all you have to do is reach into each lead molecule and extract four of those pesky protons, and neutrons and a like number of those really pesky electrons (that’s the hard part because they can be two places at one time so catching them is the real trick) then wait two more hours, grab a bite to eat (after taking off the urine soaked gloves) and there you will have it…. Gold.

All that said, hydrogen is the future, the only Real Future, but storage as well as economically separating it from oxygen are technologies that are going to take a Manhattan Project effort or more to solve. No one or nation or corporation at this point is willing to put out the effort and resources to accomplish this. And I for one do not believe that electric power with the current available technology is even close to the answer.
 
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MFH125

Member
164
166
I have a few questions about electric vehicles.

In our neck of the woods they make sense since the vast majority of electricity is hydro-electric. Which apart from the initial and continuing damage to local eco-systems is a relatively clean source of electricity.

However, roughly 80% of global electricity is sourced from fossil fuels at the present time.

So while a shift to EVs will clean up the air in cities, from a global perspective will it have any net impact on climate change?

Which leads to a follow up question: are more fossil fuels consumed in electricity production to drive an EV one mile than fuel consumed to drive an ICE vehicle one mile (various conversion and transmission losses and all)?

The only sensible solution I see is to vastly increase the amount of electricity generated by renewables - but is this feasible in the next few decades? IDK.

The answer is that it depends. A coal powered electrical plant usually has an efficiency in the range of 30-35%, oil is around 42%, and a good natural gas plant will have efficiencies around 60%.

Electric cars have an efficiency of roughly 70-80% (i.e. energy put onto the road / energy taken from the grid). ICE cars have an efficiency of 12-30% (i.e. energy put onto the road / energy stored in the fuel). In most cases the electric car will be more efficient, probably a lot more efficient.

All these numbers are estimates by the US Department of Energy. They also represent best case scenarios. If you're a city driver in an average car, you're probably going to have an efficiency under 20%, even if some cars out there can do better. Grid transmission losses will vary from place to place, etc. Gasoline distribution also costs a lot, which isn't taken into account here. That is to say, EV's look like they're usually better, but your mileage may vary. The relationship between efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions is also not so straightforward. Coal is a lot more than twice as dirty as gas.
 

slap

Super Anarchist
6,152
1,627
Somewhat near Naptown
If you want to have a hydrogen tank to have the same amount of BTU's as in a diesel tank the hydrogen tank has to be 12 times the size of the diesel tank if the hydrogen is pressurized to 5000psi. That's more than a scuba tank (3000psi). Of course you could use lower pressures but the tank size goes up as the pressure decreases. PV=nrT. At atmospheric pressure the tank would have to be over 4000 times the size of the diesel tank.
 

seandepagnier

New member
If they can overturn Roe, anything can happen, but banning the burning of oil, in the usa? We will all be dead first.
Yes anything can happen. Laws dont make sense. It make more sense to tax fuels to oblivion.
Fuck right off.
Why are you rude? I think you just sit around and read biased second and third hand reports online and you have zero actual experience with anything we are talking about here.
Hydrogen, stored in hulls. It is only lighter if it displaces oxygen, and if you add any pressure, it is heavier.
Of course it is lighter if it is only hydrogen. Storing mixed with oxygen is dangerous. there is no pressure, pressure leads to lower round trip efficiency and complications.

But a whole hollow boat of hydrogen (a sentence no one ever thought to say) has the energy of a dry fart. You have to compress the fuck out of hydrogen to get very shitty energy density.

And your hollow boat cannot take the shitty energy density pressure and not explode, not to mention the very expensive energy and equipment to compress it to almost not shitty.

Fuck right off.
I use aluminized mylar bags. These store hydrogen for months without leaking (much) and I paid $3 to be able to store 250 liters of hydrogen. The volume in trimaran hull in uncompressed hydrogen is significant, in my case about 16kwh. I am not using all this, only a few small bags (one escaped and floated away already lol)

I think what you "know" is not from actual experience so you just have negative comments biased by a small imagination and zero experience.
Have to agree with all of that.

I'd also have to question the urine->ammonia->electrolysis->hydrogen bit.
Voltage. It takes significantly less energy to split ammonia which has 3 hydrogen per molecule rather than 2.
The poster is undoubtedly full of shit, but full of piss as well? Maybe he has yellow eyes, dunno.

All that rubbish reads like someone has done a quick google and spewed out things with no comprehension of them.
That is what you guys seem like as you have not actually done anything with hydrogen yet seem to have strong views against it. I have built my electrolyzer.
How do you seal the hulls to prevent H2 leakage? What do you use? What pressure is your storage vessel at?

How do you transfer H2 from your tank full of piss to your storage tank? How much energy does this use?
The electrolyzer uses about 200 watts and produce a few liters of hydrogen per minute.

How do you transfer the H2 back to where it does useful work? What materials do you use? How do you seal against leaks? What's the plan to deal with H2 embrittlement of any metals in contact with the gas? Do you know what sorts of metals that requires, and their cost?
There are no metals besides the electrolyzer plates, and the catalyst in the burner element. The cost is all very very low compared to a battery system.
Some of this shit actually does work, in shore-based situations like piggeries, dairy farms and mass collections of humans. But TOTALLY different scale to small cruising boats, and doesn't scale down worth a damn.
It does scale. It does work. it is unreasonable to use a fuel cell here. Using the hydrogen for cooking or even a cutting torch is reasonable, and works and well within reach. Trying to run your electric drive off it is in serious question and probably not practical in most cases. I am not even attempting this. Don't knock hydrogen for what it isnt, consider what it can do.

Why dont you do some work. Calculate the joules hydrogen stores, based on volume. Calculate what is needed to power a cooking stove. Consider most gas stoves are 15% efficient but could be much much higher, its just that the heat is mostly wasted, so consider an 80% efficient catalytic hydrogen stove.

You will find.. running a stove for 5 minutes on hydrogen using 5 hours of power from a 50 watt solar panel is actually possible and doesnt degrade battery from high discharge or require a large expensive battery bank.
I'll stick with my 100+ year old diesel tech until these problems get solved by something approaching off the shelf engineering equipment.

FKT
This is a bad attitude to have. You should be solving the problems rather than whining that you need to wait for someone else to.

o wind I can rely on about 5.5knots from the engine at cruising revs or about 1l per hour.
SO basically it takes you a lot longer to get anywhere with your engine. 5.5 knots? I sail at 15 knots. I only need 4 knots of wind to go 5.5 knots. Consider the amount of time becalmed (20 minutes sailing halfway around the world) If you want to get places faster, get a more efficient sailing boat. Otherwise you will always be slow if you are stuck in displacement speeds.
If I work on leaving 5l in the bottom of the tank, that gives me a range of 220 miles, I could get even more if I went slower, but that's a good compromise. It allows me to get back for work, make tidal gates if the wind drops etc.
My boat sails well so most the time I don't need it, but its nice to be there.
I am not so sure your boat does sail that well. What kind of boat is this? Rather than talk about all the selfish reasons you have diesel that benefit no one, why not consider other people? How does it affect others? Watching boats motoring is boring. It causes pollution. The harbor is full of diesel most of the time, its not safe to swim. They constantly run the engine at anchor smogging the anchorage, then use the engine to motor when it would be perfectly easy to sail instead. Then, the diesel itself actually causes and funds wars where children are being bombed. If you buy diesel you are indirectly causing suffering for many less fortunate people and this is inherently immoral. If it were not extremely bad in many ways, there would not be much discussion about this and no one would be concerned about not using diesel anymore.

It would do a lot to improve sailing to ban combustion engines one way or another. The type of people who choose to use diesel engines are not very interesting to talk to and generally do not have much sailing ability. I have met hundreds and hundreds of cruisers sailing all over the world. The most interesting were the ones without engines.

98% of sailing experience is sailing within 100 meters of shore/obstructions. It is not hard to sail in open water where there is room for errors/mistakes. Most boats drop the sails well before they are in the difficult area to sail, for example, tacking in a canal or harbor, sailing backwards off a dock and many more. So engine people essentially have negligible experience sailing even if they have been doing it for years, and end up calling for a tow if the engine doesn't start: sad.

Where I sail the tides are pretty fierce. 3-4 knots on neaps and 4-7 knots on springs, its nice to be able to plug against it if I fall short of my destination before high water. 3 hours after HW, there is nowhere else to go and on a previous boat I ran out of
"it would be nice" Well.. the world is burning, and that is not very nice or worth the difference of you dropping an anchor. It is better you anchor and wait for the tide, or get a boat that can sail against it.
Of course for others, electric is the perfect solution, but for me, it doesn't match my requirements.
But you having diesel does not match my requirements. Your "requirements" are not really required, and are therefore not real requirements. Forget electric, you should be able to manage with just the sails, as people in the past, and they had many other more difficult issues. Or do you concede you will never be much of a sailor compared to people who died long ago?
If you ban everything that pollutes because its 'non essential' then there's not going to be much left.
Check out the situation in sri lanka. They have food delivery trucks and emergency services only. The fishing boats do not have fuel.
Getting the lithium for your batteries, the shipping to get it to where you are, most likely your boat itself, the equipment on it, the device you wrote that post on, all have a carbon and pollution cost. And despite them not being needed because you have sails, you still have an electric drive.
That is true. Also wind turbines and solar panels have a carbon cost. It so happens that wind turbine carbon cost lower than all other forms of power. It is 100's of times less carbon than the amount of coal power.

This is similar on a boat. The sails have equivalence of thousands of miles per gallon compared to burning the fuel, and no such engine can compete with this. Then you still have the engine itself: a large carbon cost in a diesel engine even if it is not often used.

So claiming everything has a footprint is true, but if one form causes hundreds of times the emissions, it is not really a consideration and its not a relevant argument.
You owning a boat isn't essential either yet you still do.

It's a strange point to make, I think most of us like the idea of a quiet electric drive and no diesel fumes, but right now electric can't compete from a weight / range point or a cost point.
Weight? My electric motor is only about 10 pounds. My battery is 10 pounds of lithium. My range is unlimited because it use only 120 watts and can run continuous from solar. I also have a tow generator and can recharge while sailing. The motor is not actually needed at all.

My sculling oar is actually wood, and has no carbon footprint as I used hand tools and got it from a dead tree in the forest on rodrigues island. Before talking about engine, diesel, electric etc, the boat should have a sculling oar. It is the most reliable, and keeps me warm in winter. Also it didn't cost anything to build. It is more important than electric propulsion and should be installed first. It powers the boat 2 knots (In calm) which is quite useful. I have sculled more than 100 miles in total.
 
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seandepagnier

New member
. The relationship between efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions is also not so straightforward. Coal is a lot more than twice as dirty as gas.
But 3.5% of all gas produced leaks out of pipelines which gives it the same or worse short term warming effect of burning coal. It is potentially worse in the short term to push rate of change faster and faster.
If you want to have a hydrogen tank to have the same amount of BTU's as in a diesel tank the hydrogen tank has to be 12 times the size of the diesel tank if the hydrogen is pressurized to 5000psi. That's more than a scuba tank (3000psi). Of course you could use lower pressures but the tank size goes up as the pressure decreases. PV=nrT. At atmospheric pressure the tank would have to be over 4000 times the size of the diesel tank.
It is not 12 times at 5000 psi. It has nearly the same net energy at 6000psi, because the fuel cells are much more efficient. Can you show your work regardless?

It so happens, the amas on the trimaran hull are thousands of times more volume than the energy density in liquid fuel needed. My ama with uncompressed hydrogen can store the same energy as 1-2 gallons of diesel, and I have two of them. With a weight of -20 pounds instead of 30 pounds of fuel, and the ability to recharge it from the tow generator on passages.
 

Zeehond

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0
UK
All hail the mighty sculling oar. It has been the only auxiliary propulsion on the three sailboats I owned over the last 40 years. Working to refit my current project, I'm ripping out the inboard diesel, losing the 100kg+, losing the prop drag, drag from skin fittings, the smell, the unwanted complexity. Of course you do need a boat that will sail and if you want to go offshore something that goes to windward in a gale.
 

MiddayGun

Super Anarchist
1,191
450
Yorkshire
#Why are you rude? I think you just sit around and read biased second and third hand reports online and you have zero actual experience with anything we are talking about here.

Pot calling the kettle black.
You come across as a proper tosser.
SO basically it takes you a lot longer to get anywhere with your engine. 5.5 knots? I sail at 15 knots. I only need 4 knots of wind to go 5.5 knots. Consider the amount of time becalmed (20 minutes sailing halfway around the world) If you want to get places faster, get a more efficient sailing boat. Otherwise you will always be slow if you are stuck in displacement speeds.

Are you being deliberately obtuse. Its a fucking sailing boat, obviously its slower motoring.
Maybe you live somewhere special with perfect winds, but where I live we have things called weather systems, and sometimes there isn't any wind, or there is insufficient to complete a passage on time..
For someone that complains on this thread about others not knowing what they're talking about, you have no clue about my boat or how well it sails. Again pot, kettle, black.
And you might sail at 15 knots off the wind, unlikely your VMG is 5.5 knots upwind in 4 knots true.

Trimarans and Cats are nice, but if you saw how much it would cost to moor one around here then you'd understand why no one has them. Nice if you can spend your life at anchor, not so good when you keep your boat on a berth.

I am not so sure your boat does sail that well. What kind of boat is this? Rather than talk about all the selfish reasons you have diesel that benefit no one, why not consider other people? How does it affect others? Watching boats motoring is boring. It causes pollution. The harbor is full of diesel most of the time, its not safe to swim. They constantly run the engine at anchor smogging the anchorage, then use the engine to motor when it would be perfectly easy to sail instead. Then, the diesel itself actually causes and funds wars where children are being bombed. If you buy diesel you are indirectly causing suffering for many less fortunate people and this is inherently immoral. If it were not extremely bad in many ways, there would not be much discussion about this and no one would be concerned about not using diesel anymore.

You really are a sanctimonious prick. How does your boat benefit anyone but yourself? It doesn't.
Your motor, battery and nearly everything on your boat comes from some oil based product, but like most virtue signalers you conveniently choose a cut off point of what's acceptable that includes your hobby but excludes anyone else..

And watching boats motoring is boring? Who cares? They aren't there for your gratification.


It would do a lot to improve sailing to ban combustion engines one way or another. The type of people who choose to use diesel engines are not very interesting to talk to and generally do not have much sailing ability. I have met hundreds and hundreds of cruisers sailing all over the world. The most interesting were the ones without engines.
Needs citation.
In fact, lets see some proof of your sailing ability.

. So engine people essentially have negligible experience sailing even if they have been doing it for years, and end up calling for a tow if the engine doesn't start: sad.

Speak for yourself mate.
Plenty of us sail and race on estuaries with shifting sand / mud banks, complex and hard running tides. And many are ex dinghy sailors, which is about a pure a sailing experience as you can get.
Turning on the engine to get home when there's no wind hardly negates that. But it doesn't sound like you have anywhere to be... good for you.
But you having diesel does not match my requirements. Your "requirements" are not really required, and are therefore not real requirements. Forget electric, you should be able to manage with just the sails, as people in the past, and they had many other more difficult issues. Or do you concede you will never be much of a sailor compared to people who died long ago?
I feel like I'm definitely being trolled at this point.
:D
You're right, I will never be much of a sailor compared to the people who died long ago (many of them at sea, the 'good old days'), but you're delusional if you think that not having an engine (even though you do, its just electric) means you are.
hat is true. Also wind turbines and solar panels have a carbon cost. It so happens that wind turbine carbon cost lower than all other forms of power. It is 100's of times less carbon than the amount of coal power.

This is similar on a boat. The sails have equivalence of thousands of miles per gallon compared to burning the fuel, and no such engine can compete with this. Then you still have the engine itself: a large carbon cost in a diesel engine even if it is not often used.

So claiming everything has a footprint is true, but if one form causes hundreds of times the emissions, it is not really a consideration and its not a relevant argument.

Your argument was based on the fact that sailing is a recreational activity and not necessary.
So it still applies, you're happy to take part in the system when it suits you and try and claim some moral high ground, when you could have far less impact by staying at home.

My sculling oar is actually wood, and has no carbon footprint as I used hand tools and got it from a dead tree in the forest on rodrigues island. Before talking about engine, diesel, electric etc, the boat should have a sculling oar. It is the most reliable, and keeps me warm in winter. Also it didn't cost anything to build. It is more important than electric propulsion and should be installed first. It powers the boat 2 knots (In calm) which is quite useful. I have sculled more than 100 miles in total.

Cool, we get it. You're unemployed, living your best life with nowhere to be.
Not everyone is in that situation, so stop being a tit.
 




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