Join Date: May 2007
Location: Stuart FL
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I looked into this a bit. If you look in the engine forums someplace there are a few threads on electric drives.
Diesel generators are pretty large. Unless some advance comes along it is doubtful you could find one to even fit in the engine compartment. If you could it would cost just as much or more than a plain old diesel.
Maybe you could find the space on some larger boats and then deal with a reduced cruising speed but it does not buy you much except being able to run lots of electrical things while at anchor.
Maybe if they have some kind of a fuel cell breakthrough electric drives will be more feasible but right now it is just too hard to make that much electricity.
Some guy put a diesel electric in a motorcat then covered the top of it in solar panels. Its pretty ugly but on a sunny day he says he can run on solar power only. So there are people out there working on the problem and if you can make it work then you will be set for life.
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30' Islander Bahama