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Time to switch to electric ?

mjcoon

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18 Jun 2011
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3,076
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Berkshire, UK
2) A simple block and tackle from Seasure, c£20, mounted on your backstay will take the work out of lifting your outboard off the bracket and onto the dinghy.
Once or twice, when short-handed, we tried using the swim ladder as a crane/davit to swing the outboard far enough out to match the dinghy transom...
 

RivalRedwing

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9 Nov 2004
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Rochester, UK, boat in SYH
It's a Li-ion battery, and should last many years, with little degradation in capacity. Does your bike have a Li-ion battery?
Yes it does, and this from the manual:
Recommendations:
- The more you use your bike, the stronger is the battery.
- Don't charge your battery too often, you only have 800 cycles. Wait until you use at least 1 or 2 bars out of 5.
- Buy a new battery every 5 years. Technology improves every year, it's worth it.
Storage:
If you don't need your battery for a few months, do not keep the battery full, it will degrade faster if kept full or flat.
Ride the bike until you use at least one bar out of 5 before storing.


Sorry, I mis-remembered 5 years as 4 years. I have no knowledge of this technology or whether the above are credible (beyond coming from an established bike retailer). Do Torqeedo or E-propulsion make any statements on this matter?

I should addo that I am quite tempted by an e-motor but battery longevity is a bit of an issue for an occasional use item (vs 10L of petrol per year..) and what is the stance taken by suppliers on supporting older models with upgraded newer technology batteries.
 
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Easticks28

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12 Aug 2009
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Norfolk Broads
One of the great appeals about electric over internal combustion is even when it's been dumped into ones shed, a year or more later it will work. It's the simpleness.
I would happily dump my yacht engine for electric but for cost and lack of range.
Give it time and I'm sure there will be a power cell to make electric propulsion superior
That , and the fact that I have no mains on my mooring.
 

Rappey

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13 Dec 2019
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1,447
I have no mains on my mooring.
Neither have i, but i would like to think solar panels and maybe wind could charge the batteries whilst im away..
It is a size thing though, as in the larger the boat the more panels you can have..
there is a 88ft motor cat that has electric drive from solar and batteries. Can motor around 7 knts forever (theoretically.
 

Boathook

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5 Oct 2001
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4,408
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Surrey & boat in Dorset. Both have pubs
Neither have i, but i would like to think solar panels and maybe wind could charge the batteries whilst im away..
It is a size thing though, as in the larger the boat the more panels you can have..
there is a 88ft motor cat that has electric drive from solar and batteries. Can motor around 7 knts forever (theoretically.
Might charge whilst you are away from the boat, but what's happens on holiday? Last year I ended up doing a lot of motoring and a battery system wouldn't have coped with 15 hours in one hit. A few years previous I motored for nearly 20 hours due to lack of wind and had to get back to work. To me that is the big downside of electric, how to recharge when at anchor overnight.
 

rotrax

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17 Dec 2010
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10,487
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South Oxfordshire, Gosport and Wellington New Zeal
I knocked up a simple outboard crane from odd bits of S/S tube I had or scrounged. Including the new double blocks, shackles, rope and a tenners worth of welding, about £35.

It is now a doddle to handle our 5HP four stroke Suzuki. Which is bloody heavy!

We sometimes have to make a half hour dinghy trip. The Suzuki and vee floor 2.4 Sunsport make it really easy. Very economical too.

For all their advantages, I am not going electric yet.
 

RupertW

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20 Mar 2002
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8,465
Location
Greenwich
Maybe, depends what you expect. If you've used the outboard during the day, and then plug the battery in to the boat's 12v system, it'll be recharged by morning. If you want to go out in the middle of the night, it might not be.
I’ve had one for 6 years now and always charge by fast charger vis a cheapo invertor and it barely touches battery capacity. 10 percent of Torqueedo used each way for quarter mile push of heavy 3m rib with 4 people, The newer standard batteries are nearly twice the capacity.
 

RivalRedwing

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Joined
9 Nov 2004
Messages
2,629
Location
Rochester, UK, boat in SYH
Yes it does, and this from the manual:
Recommendations:
- The more you use your bike, the stronger is the battery.
- Don't charge your battery too often, you only have 800 cycles. Wait until you use at least 1 or 2 bars out of 5.
- Buy a new battery every 5 years. Technology improves every year, it's worth it.
Storage:
If you don't need your battery for a few months, do not keep the battery full, it will degrade faster if kept full or flat.
Ride the bike until you use at least one bar out of 5 before storing.


Sorry, I mis-remembered 5 years as 4 years. I have no knowledge of this technology or whether the above are credible (beyond coming from an established bike retailer). Do Torqeedo or E-propulsion make any statements on this matter?

I should addo that I am quite tempted by an e-motor but battery longevity is a bit of an issue for an occasional use item (vs 10L of petrol per year..) and what is the stance taken by suppliers on supporting older models with upgraded newer technology batteries.
Some digging around answered some of the above with similar responses (all from Epropulsion faqs):
During long-term storage, the Spirit battery should always remain 40% - 60% state-of-charge. Neither fully charged state nor low capacity is good for the battery life. Discharge or fuel the battery to 40% - 60% before storage and regularly check the battery level every two or three months.
The theoretical life expectancy of a Spirit battery tested at 25°C ambient environment is more than 800 cycles at 80% DOD in a capacity loss of approximately 20%. However, the actual battery life can be influenced by many factors like the storage temperature.
Both the Spirit motor and Spirit battery are warranted for a limited period of 2 years for non-commercial use.
 

lw395

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Joined
16 May 2007
Messages
42,088
A 1kWh battery is still a lot of money, even without the Torqeedo mark-up. Maybe 300 USD trade?
Then you've got to have another kWh of energy stored on the yacht to recharge it with.
That's an extra 90Ah or so, a couple of Trojans or something.

Even a typical South West cruise, you can end up with a significant outboard jaunt in places like Salcombe. Against wind and chop, you could use a lot of battery.

People who use electric outboards love them, but they tend to use them where I'd consider rowing to not be out of the question. Sometimes, my outboard barely gets used, as rowing across small harbours or in to a beach is not beyond us. But sometimes we can end up to-and-from. Yacht to quay and back several times, then maybe across the other side to explore. Likely to be more so when we're staying in one port a couple of nights, so no engine time to charge batteries. Maybe we're not moving on because the weather's not great, so the solar will be slow to charge an extra kWh.
I don't want to pay a 4 figure £ price to be limited by something.
So long as the Yamaha keeps going, we'll pass on electric outboards for now.
 

Kelpie

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15 May 2005
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Loch Snizort, Isle of Skye
FWIW I'm seriously considering going electric for the stitch and glue tender I am going to build. The hull should be quite easily driven, allowing me to use a relatively small motor.
A cheap trolling motor and a small LiFEPO4 battery would cost about £300 and be a very viable alternative to oars- probably faster and more powerful. But I already have three small petrol outboards so I will keep one of those for longer journeys or where I may need more power.
 

Poignard

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8 Oct 2018
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Singapore-on-Thames
Some food for thought in this thread.

Thinking about this overnight I asked myself whether I really need an outboard at all, and it dawned on me that the real reason I have one is that I hate rowing an inflatable!

If I had a larger yacht I could carry a decent-size rigid tender, enjoy rowing more, get fitter and save myself the trouble and expense of an outboard!

Perhaps it's time to start browsing brokers' websites.

A Rustler maybe ....... ?
 
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mjcoon

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18 Jun 2011
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Berkshire, UK
FWIW I'm seriously considering going electric for the stitch and glue tender I am going to build. The hull should be quite easily driven, allowing me to use a relatively small motor.
... But I already have three small petrol outboards so I will keep one of those for longer journeys or where I may need more power.
Lots of motor boats are driven by two outboards... (Three would be overkill!)
 

Carib

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30 Mar 2011
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296
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Southampton
On the stealability point, it occurs to me that there could be a market for a retrofit fake cowling to make your Torqeedo look like a battered old Honda or similar..!
 

pvb

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16 May 2001
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UK East Coast
The fact that it didn't have any hydrocarbon means of recharging the batteries that the bilge pump was relying upon was somewhat material.

You've made so many posts in favour of electric prolusion on this thread that I have to wonder if you're in that line of business.
Many boats use solar panels to recharge the batteries.

I'm retired; I'm a consumer, not a supplier.
 

cherod

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2 Dec 2018
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One of the great appeals about electric over internal combustion is even when it's been dumped into ones shed, a year or more later it will work. It's the simpleness.
I would happily dump my yacht engine for electric but for cost and lack of range.
Give it time and I'm sure there will be a power cell to make electric propulsion superior
what about if it gets dumped in the water ?
 

pvb

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16 May 2001
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Location
UK East Coast
I'm really surprised by the 800 cycles claim. LiFePO4 cells should be good for 2000+.
But Torqeedo batteries are Li-Ion, not LiFePO4.

My Torqeedo manual says "The cells lose around 20% of their capacity after using 500 times the battery capacity (i.e. after 500 discharges at 100% depth of discharge or 1,000 discharges at 50% depth of discharge, etc.)." I guess I rarely discharge more than about 30%, so I could expect around 1500 cycles and still have 80% of the battery's original capacity.
 
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