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Old 07-03-2013
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Re: Solar vs. Wind Turbine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by freedoman View Post
I've had a wind generator on my Gulfstar 37' sloop since 1991 and wouldn't consider doing without it. I have 3 group 31 Defender batteries (130 a/h each and they stay topped off most of the time. The unit is a Four Winds that is so quiet people come by and find it hard to believe how quiet it is. I bought it with a control unit that measures output and state of charge of the battery. It also has a bump start to get it going in light air, a reverse switch which reverses the field to stop the unit so I can put a lanyard on it when I leave. Similarly it has a spring load governor that deflects when the wind speed gets too high and slows the unit down; and finally it has a 3 stage regulator that keeps the batteries from overcharging. If we're on the boat for days with slight wind I simply leave it running when I go home and the batteries are topped off when I get back. I'm not at all against solar, I just love my Fourwinds which is mounted on a 9' SS pole.
I have a Fourwinds also, with the speedbrake too. Just took it off the boat in favor of solar. We cruise in the summer months due to school schedules, so solar makes the most sense to us. I glued folded towel fabric to the frames of the panels and set them right on top of the bimini for now. They are tied down firmly. (We have 130x3 + 120 + 40 watts, a total of 550 watts. On cloudy days I still get a few amps of charging.)

The Fourwinds is back at home, gethering dust, so to speak. We have an extra swivel-connection-thing for the top of the pole too. (Can't get those anymore, I think.) I chose the Fourwinds by motoring around Block Island harbor listening to all the wind generators. I believe I intentionally anchored near a fourwinds, as the winner of that "competition". There are other quiet wind generators out there. My mooring neighbor had a different one that did ok.

Whatever you do, don't buy one of those little-bladed wind generators. In a wind they sound like a Cessna airplane taking off -- for hours on end!

Worth repeating just in case you ever anchor near us...

Whatever you do, don't buy one of those little-bladed wind generators. In a wind they sound like a Cessna airplane taking off -- for hours on end!

Regards,
Brad
Instrument rated pilot -- credential provided to back up the (repeated) Cessna comment above.
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