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post #21 of Old 04-15-2013
Zanshin
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Re: Gen-set vs. engine

I had a D400 on my last boat along with the FP 5000 and the D400 was a great wind generator - it covered my main electrical drain - the fridge & freezer and when sailing upwind it would charge the batteries plus run the autopilot, occasionally I could feel the 2 resistance sinks get warm because it was producing too much power.

Back to gensets - I run mine about 1 to 1 1/2 hours every second day now that I've turned off my freezer. When I fire the generator up I turn on the watermaker and then I wait until the bulk battery load is finished (I'm putting in 100 amps @ 24V in bulk) before turning on the hot water heater; all my electrical battery powered devices are charging up as well. I also turn on the freezer for the genset run time, that brings the temperature of all the water and liquids in the freezer down to fridge levels.
Every two weeks or so I will run the genset much longer to get the batteries back up to 100%, I'll also run the washing machine and dishwasher during this period to keep the genset under some sort of load during the lengthy float charge period. I am thinking of getting a D400 again in order to save on this genset runtime on light loads (but I can't figure out where to put the pole so haven't done that yet).


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