How desirable is a diesel generator? - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 15 Old 12-20-2011
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Captainjay - Ahh, I see; I was misled by the initial sentence in your original post and only scanned the rest of the text. It does sound as if the OP has issues outside of the power producing capability of his genset.

Postscript - Text written while running my genset and pumping 210Ah into my battery bank (at 24V!) using a big hefty Victron inverter/charger and another Cristec charger. I no longer have a Fischer-Panda but a Cummins-Onan genset aboard this boat.


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post #12 of 15 Old 12-20-2011
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"5400W equates to a charging capacity of 450amps at 12V."
I think our casual misuse of wrods is at the heart of this.

5400W at 120VAC does not equate to a charging capacity of 450A @12VDC. It equates to a potential charging capacity, if someone invests in an expensive 1:10 stepdown transformer and some 1000A-rated diodes to rectify the AC into DC. Or these days, into a still expensive switched power supply to provide the DC.

The difference is that capacity depends on what was bult and how it was built, and these days everything is built to a price and for a purpose, a target market. Even Honda, whose gensets are widely acclaimed, states flat ou tin the manual for some that the DC output is suitable only for battery charging, and not for any other purpose, because the DC waveform is so dirty. That's made for a purpose, battery charging.

The OP's Fischer Panda apparently is made to provide AC power, with a smaller capacity DC to charge a small battery bank, or perhaps DC loads. (Who knows how clean that DC is?) Whether it is "right" or "wrong" for the built-in DC output to only provide 40A, depends on what it was built for, as well as whether it is working to spec.

Heck, my *lunch* has the capacity to power a small ship for a week. Capacity, yes, but the Mr. Fusion converter is lacking, so someone won't be able to make that happen this week. :-)

Zanshin, some time ago you lost a rudder and there was a long thread about how the post failed. What ever became of that, did anyone figure out why it broke?
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post #13 of 15 Old 12-21-2011
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Hellosailor - we won't quibble about capability or potential here, sort of like saying that a Ferrari can only travel 60MPH top speed....if you leave it in first gear

The lost rudder was 2 boat ago, but the cause was a mix of a probable grounding with slight stock bend early on in the charter career before I got the boat, then crevice corrosion set in and heavier weather did the rest. But on my new boat I am very careful about keeping the forces on the rudder as low as practicable so that I won't have to go through anything like that again in the future.


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post #14 of 15 Old 12-21-2011
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Rudders, rudderposts...
I *know* I've been tiaght sufficient math to figure it out, I just have no anywhere near real or recent experience to consider things like "how much torque, twist, pressure, does a rudder impose on a rudder post when the boat is moving laterally against 20' seas in 45mph winds at 5 knots under bare poles?"

Somewhere amongst us are the engineers or nautical architects who, one can dream, have the formulae all meatly typed up somewhere to make the plug-n-play....

I think the three little piggies has similar questions before the huffing and puffing began. (G)
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post #15 of 15 Old 12-22-2011
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Bchaps: you won't need air-conditioning on the hook in the Bahamas.

I removed an old Onan diesel genset out of my boat, and was glad to get rid of the weight and free up engine-compartment space and simplify the boat. But mine was a much easier choice: much older genset which had some problems, air-conditioners which had some problems, AC freezer which had some problems.

A genset is a nice backup in case engine alternator fails (but I guess you have solar), nice to power tools, nice to run a microwave or coffeemaker or whatever. But I live just fine on solar and propane now. And burning less fuel is a very good thing.

And a working genset and air-conditioner is part of the value of your boat, at present.

Bill Dietrich

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