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Old 10-26-2010
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I have a 15hp outboard on my tender which is much less weight than your sailboat. I can go through 5 gallons of gas a day pretty easy. Now, that is planning out and pulling kids, etc, but my point is that they are horribly inefficient (my 54 hp diesel yanmar sucks 1 gph at max cruising speed). BTW, my outboard was like $2200 IIRC. Yamaha. New. How much are you going to get for that diesel engine once you rip it out... assuming you can even find a buyer? Plus, instead of storing diesel on your boat, you now are storing gas which stinks and is explosive. And storing gasoline on decks is a real pain in the butt. The tanks get hot and expand and contract and often will begin losing their gas via vapor. And storing it down below where it stays ot of the direct sun is crazy. I hate gasoline... though it is a neccessary evil for us as cruisers (us... not everyone).

I think ripping out your diesel is a terrible idea. Want to go without the engine? Fine. Go without it. But leave it in there and fil up your tanks with diesel. Better to have it and not need it than the other way around. Also (as was mentioned) is the point of charging your batteries - or are you going to go with all solar panels or a gas generator too? I dropped over $7,000 in my solar setup to be independent. If you go the gas generator option, once again, you have to carry even MORE gas. Plus, you now have the cost of buying the gas generator too. WHen this is all said and done, I seriously doubt you will save one penny from ripping out that diesel. In fact, it might cost a small fortune.

I think a diesel engine is a sailors best friend. They are reliable, the are efficient, and they are safe. They are not as reliable as sails, but I have sure spent many a day out there with zero wind and would have hated not having a diesel. I almost always am fighting opposing currents and wind to dock or make a tight channel. And to be honest, there will be many, many, many areas of the ICW that you will not be able to transit under sail.

Brian

PS Yes, all of this is from experience. And the adage that the old sailors did it without engines is not completely true. They had oars and rowed - and did it quite proficiently. And quite candidly, they were a lot better sailors than most of us. But I bet you money that if there were such things as engines, they would have had them aboard.
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