Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Big Horse Creek, NC - Summer
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Real-life energy production
When we began designing our charging system several years ago, I found that reading about other cruiser's systems to be the most help.
I would like to ask that those who are cruising, share their system configuartion.
This is ours:
Boat: Brewer 42
Persons aboard: Two adults
Batteries: AGM We chose AGM because of their slow discharge rate. We are away from the boat 5-6 months annually.
~House Bank = 4 - 6v Total 420AH
~Starter = 1 - 12v 110AH
~Windlass = 1 - 12v 110AH
The three battery banks are tied together with a PathMaker 3 Bank Battery Combiner. We find that this set-up works very well.
Charging system components:
~110 Balmar Alternator run to starter battery
~Two Kyrocera 120 watt solar panels run through a BlueSky Solar Boost 2000E to the house bank
~Shore power run through a TrueCharge 20amp charger to house bank
~Honda 2000 gas generator that we plug into the shore power inlet
Average daily power consumption: 120AH
Largest power draws at anchor: A-B 12v refrig = 65AH
Largest power draws underway: Furuno AutoPilot & Furuno Radar
How often we run engine just to charge batteries: never
How often we run generator: every third day if sunny....every other day if cloudy.
How can our system be improved: add more batteries to house bank
Problems with existing system: When we motor (60% of the time), all three banks are full in 2-3 hours, then any energy that could be produced by the alternator can not be stored. We plan to increase the house bank to 630AH.
~We added 3" additional insulation to our refrig and freezer
~Put a thick towel over your frig/freezer lids while not in the galley
Hope that this is helpful!