Author Topic: Electric Motor?  (Read 2545 times)

Offline Unclemike

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2014, 09:44:02 AM »
We are satisfied with our 50 thrust lbs electric ("Prowler" from Bass Pro Shop) for getting out and back to the doc, but now, we're more concerned about getting back from going on a trip or running into a storm and not having the power or juice to get back to where we need to be. I wish the LEHR (LP gas) motors weren't so dang "rich"! We might have to look for a good used 5 hp or do a trade.
Uncle Mike
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Offline Unclemike

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #16 on: October 07, 2014, 08:56:17 PM »
We ended up selling our electric. It was OK for getting in and out of the dock but we had doubts of getting back down-wind or down-current more than a couple miles or in a storm if need be. We found a nice used 4 stroke, 4 hp Nissan. Can't wait to check it out this weekend. It's FINALLY cooled off a bit in Florida and the afternoon storms have died down-Yippee!
Uncle Mike

Offline Mike K

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #17 on: October 07, 2014, 09:49:57 PM »
Getting the gas motor sounds like a prudent thing to do for those longer trips.  I think you'll like your Nissan/Tohastsu 4hp outboard.
Mike.  '13 Legacy "Santosha".

Offline Bob23

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #18 on: October 08, 2014, 04:30:16 AM »
During the recent BBB,  I had 2 occasions where i needed to motor for 2 plus hours into oncoming wind and tide. I like the extra power ofc my 8 hp Nissan 2 stroke. My range is only limited by my fuel supply on board. I never want to be limited by a battery. Different needs...different motors.
Bob23

Offline kickingbug1

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #19 on: October 08, 2014, 09:05:21 PM »
   the way i see it the weight of the batteries (better be at least two if you want to motor very far) is pretty prohibitive and they sure arent cheap. give me a regular outboard anytime. so far my mercury 4 stroke is trouble free and pretty quiet. at 55lbs its still lighter than the batteries and trolling motor. i dont mean to alter your thinking but i have seen sailboats with electric motors waving for a tow when they ran out of juice
oday 14 daysailor, chrysler musketeer cat, chrysler mutineer, com-pac 16-1 "kicknbug" renamed "audrey j", catalina capri 18 "audrey j"

Offline InertBert

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #20 on: October 08, 2014, 09:14:55 PM »
Yeah, as much as I'd like silent power, I'm back to gas outboards.  I had the electric repaired and it failed a second time.  So much for the reliability of fewer moving parts.  Plus, fighting headwinds and current with inadequate power could be dangerous in the gulf.  I wish electric worked better, but it'll be gas outboards for me, for a while longer yet.
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Offline Unclemike

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #21 on: October 09, 2014, 09:18:25 AM »
We still have the battery on board that we were using to power the electric motor. We need it for all our lights.
Uncle Mike

Offline capt_nemo

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #22 on: October 09, 2014, 11:07:12 PM »
I too, have been enamored with the possibility of electric propulsion on boats for quite some time. Perhaps it's because of my Electrical Engineering background.

Nevertheless, after careful consideration of the intended use of my many small boats over the years, I've chosen outboard propulsion for ALL of them!

And, properly maintained and fed (stabilized non-ethanol fuel), they have never let me down.

However, all that said, electric propulsion is still a viable option under certain conditions and circumstances.

capt_nemo

Offline Bob23

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #23 on: October 10, 2014, 04:48:44 AM »
  Just as the first cordless power tools under performed thier corded counterparts, the latest generation of Makita (my favorite) 18 volt lithium ion battery tools are incredible. And they keep getting better. I'm sure as battery technology evolves, electric outboards will become more practible. Whereas with the first generation it was "how many charges per day" now its "how many days per charge". It really comes down to the battery technology.
  A client of mine recently boat an electric SmartCar for local use at her house on the Jersey Shore. But the range is so limited (about 65 miles) that it had to be trucked down from the dealer! Consider the irony! But also consider that the Tesla has a 300 mile range. Who knows where electric power will be in 5 years! Maybe a D cell sized battery will be pushing our electric outboards!
  That being said, I'll keep my Nissan 8hp  2 stoke for now. She's always there when I need her.
Bob23

Offline brackish

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #24 on: October 10, 2014, 08:17:18 AM »
I agree with Bob, the technology will need to advance to make electric viable.  The analogy to portable power tools is a good one.  I had planned to rebuild five 19.2V NiCad battery packs for my Porter Cable tools but I bought a cheap Lithium Ion driver to tide me over until I could do the rebuilds.  I was so impressed that my plan now is to scrap the batteries and eventually the tools and replace all with LI.  I'll hang on to the tools for a while to see if some enterprising individual comes up with LI replacement battery packs for old NiCad driven tools.  I've also scrapped my corded hedge trimmer and am planning to scrap my gasoline weed trimmer/edger next spring in favor of LI driven tools.

In addition to range and power, cost is a big issue.  For a sail boat, substituting batteries for ballast as an initial design rather than a retrofit just seems like the right way to go.  I was really impressed with the Compac Electric option for the Horizon Cat, Eclipse etc. until I found out it was a $16K option.  As much as I like the idea of electric done in that manner, those numbers just won't work.  And I fail to see any real advantage to electric outboards whether purpose built or trolling conversions.  Although I prefer an inboard for weight distribution and reducing stern clutter, Capt_Nemo's conclusion that a well tuned and maintained outboard, which will be trouble free if kept up, is a much better choice at this time than the electric outboard options.

Offline Unclemike

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #25 on: October 10, 2014, 12:24:19 PM »
The LEHR motors might have been a great option, using LP gas, but some of the reviews about quality concerns on the net persuaded me otherwise. It may be the engine of the future, once they get the kinks out.
http://golehr.com/
Uncle Mike

Offline InertBert

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #26 on: October 10, 2014, 02:01:10 PM »
I guess enough people are buying drills and edgers to drive the development of those.  Its kind of crazy to me that there isn't a lithium ion powered outboard with the batteries built in where the engine normally is.  I commute at highway speeds in comfort with the AC on in my electric Nissan Leaf, in the abstract, it should be orders of magnitude easier to push a dinky little sailboat around at 4mph for an afternoon.  Seems like boats are going to be delayed behind many other electric markets for their technology.  Oh well.

That being said, those electric Horizon Cats would be wonderful for a silent cruise out in the gulf at sunset. 
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Offline brackish

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #27 on: October 10, 2014, 03:48:27 PM »
The LEHR motors might have been a great option, using LP gas, but some of the reviews about quality concerns on the net persuaded me otherwise. It may be the engine of the future, once they get the kinks out.
http://golehr.com/

Without regard to quality, fuel storage would be a problem for me and I'm sure many others.  A 20lb propane tank which is probably all that would fit in the fuel storage area is 366K BTU's.  A six gallon gasoline tank which is the largest tank that will fit in the area holds 684K BTU's.  If, for instance I wanted to go from my marina (which does not have a refill station for propane) up the ditch to Lake Pickwick, I could not make it on one tank of propane and would have no reliable refill on demand opportunity.  I could make it easily with one tank of gasoline.  Additionally, there is no place around here to top off a partially filled tank.  If you want to fill a partial tank, you still pay for a full tank.  With my gasoline tank I just stop along the way and pick up some unleaded gasoline in my top off can and fill the boat tank when I get there.

And if you want propane in a small tank this time of year around here, you are liable to have to wait several days to a week.  All the propane suppliers have all hands on deck filling the rural house and farm tanks before the heating season, they don't want to fool with the gas grill and shop heater crowd.  I know, I just went through that.

Also in this area propane is going up in price and gasoline is falling like a rock.  I paid $25 recently to fill my shop heater tank.  The cost for the equivalent BTU' of gasoline is about $11.50

just some things to think about.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2014, 09:11:02 PM by brackish »

Offline Craig

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #28 on: October 10, 2014, 07:45:03 PM »
Refill,recharge, that is the question.......! Electrics would be great if there was a way to have an instant recharge. Tesla has a 300 mi range..... But how long / where to recharge?  Battery tech IS the answer. Til then.....nothing better than a spare tank of fuel.
Craig, Horizon Cat "Kailani"  Punta Gorda, FL

Offline Bob23

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Re: Electric Motor?
« Reply #29 on: October 10, 2014, 08:04:39 PM »
   Actually, I stand corrected: Teslas have about a 265 mile range. Not bad for a performance car. Maybe the new Tesla battery factory  may be part of the answer. How about a Mr. Fusion on top of a nuclear powered outboard?
   Or we could follow Lin and Larry Pardeys lead and go engineless! Now there's a concept.
Bob23