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  #61  
Old 07-01-2012
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

Bass, you have a single 230-watt panel and what size/type refrigerator then?
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  #62  
Old 07-01-2012
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

If you think you could 'get by' with an ipad, go for it but I would highly recommend a Macbook air instead. It's the most power miserly thing I've ever seen, recharges fast and runs a long time on its internal batt.
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

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Originally Posted by xymotic View Post
If you think you could 'get by' with an ipad, go for it but I would highly recommend a Macbook air instead. It's the most power miserly thing I've ever seen, recharges fast and runs a long time on its internal batt.
I LOVE the MacBook Air!
Wonderful bit of kit for sure!

I would have thought that the iPad would be better on battery power though?
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  #64  
Old 07-01-2012
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

Near as I understand, the iPad is slightly better (only slightly!) but it is like having "computer lite" in terms of capabilities. It makes a great secondary but most people need at least one real computer/laptop in addition.

(That said, Dan LOVES his new iPad)
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

Would be in addition to my iMac, but significantly less power hungry!
That way I would only turn the iMac on when I needed it.

I had an iPad 1 on for a week that was lent to me on trial, and whilst I concluded that they are fantastic! I found that (for my needs) there was not enough functionality for me to have one as a stand alone machine.

As you say wingNwing a great secondary tool.
If I was to get rid of the iMac and have only a portable, them top spec MacBook Air would be the way to go without any doubt in my mind.
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  #66  
Old 07-09-2012
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

Why make everything hard? I would suggest that some of you subscribe to the K.I.S.S. program .... as to liveing on a boat with just solar for power .. YES, It can be done and has been done ... I am doing it at this time ... Instead of asking, Can it be done? Say I can do that, then figure it out. Do not make it complicated.
With solar it is a give take thing ... to use this you do not use that ... or you can limit useage to different times ... just use the thing on the shoulders ...
I use a 6 battery bank system and have all the power i requier to watch movies use a computer and that stuff ... refirigeration is nice to have but a ice chest is good to the only drawback is getting the ice ... refirigiration is make big steps as to powerconsumption and such and being more efficient so hang in the a little longer on that one ...
The main thing that you have to understand is that living on a boat is a lot different then living on land ... if you are tied to a dock then I consider you to be land based .... get off the dock and go to anchoror at least a mooring ... have a tiny bit of adventure ...
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

We have 6 125Ah batteries in our house bank, 3 85watt Siemens panels producing and avg of 50-60Ah, 2 80watt flexible producing avg 20-30Ah. Our biggest users are the watermaker at 28Ah and the refer at 30Ah. With most lighting now converted to LED and windvane steering we just need to be reasonably judicious. With 700+ Ah in the house bank, we can go a few days without charge. We are thinking of getting an Aquair 100 towed generator, but thanks to you folks I may just get my wife an exercise bike for her birthday! We really only need our engine for maneuvering and emergencies, of course the ultimate would be to have 20hp electric for the dingy too! That is coming as may be total electric motor. Has anyone heard of a mast laminated with solar material? Or flex panels in sails?
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

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...but thanks to you folks I may just get my wife an exercise bike for her birthday!
ha ha ha ha!

I have been thinking about manual charging options more and more recently, mainly due to the fact that the terms "bright, warm and sunny day" and the word "England" are not used in the same sentence as often as they might me elsewhere...

I think that if you are the type who works out regularly then sure that expended energy could be put to productive use by using it to charge the house batteries right?

So far I have only come up with a few imaginative ways and (have just this moment) decided to start another thread regarding this and see what ideas the community throws up...
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

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Has anyone heard of a mast laminated with solar material? Or flex panels in sails?
I googles this a while back and according to what I found we may actually be able to buy solar panel cloth very soon! so we may even see sail makers beginning to sail solar panel sails in the not too distant future!

I think using solar panels (the flexible sticky backed ones) up both sides of the mast is a great idea, but I think (belt and braces) additional fixings would be prudent! I plan to do that myself (solar panels up the sides of the mast! pretty much at least one side will get sunshine throughout the day.
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Re: Solar power ~ no more running the engine

I have seen clear panels used for windows/skylights. I have no doubt it is expensive, but the technology is coming. While most of the flexible panels and material is not as efficient as the ridged panels, it does a better job under low light and indirect light conditions. I think with advances in storage, motor design and panel efficiency, we will see boats with all electric motors, aux as well as the dingy. Till then, "Keep peddling honey, I'm almost done with the email!"
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