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  #41  
Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

A lot of comments here, some good. I do not have a generator but must run the engine to top off the batteries, starting the second day away from dock. The main culprit is the fridge, and, while underway, all the instruments and the autopilot (no air conditioning). Even though the engine runs quietly, at idle speed (a no-no for a diesel, but...), I resent it. I will probably install sufficient solar panels to reduce the reliance on diesel-generated power to an absolute minimum (up here, you can not rely on wind when in a well protected anchorage). An alternative that my spouse will not consider is to reduce or eliminate the use of the fridge, even though we are often away for short trips of only 3 or 4 nights. "Back to basics" goes only so far for her, and for many others...
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Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

Forgive me brothers & sisters, for I have sinned . We've had a Yamaha 1000 portable gas generator for years now. It's our electrical safety blanket. But up until last season, we'd used it twice in 8 years while on the hook, and both those were when we were alone.

Last season we got three days into our six-week meander around Lake Superior and discovered our wind generator had packed it in. Our electrical needs are modest, but we motor very little while cruising, so we eventually had to choose between running the big diesel at anchor, or running the little generator. The choice became obvious...

I abhor noise at anchor, so I visited all the boats in our anchorages, and chagrinly requested their approval. Everyone was great, and assured us it would be no problem. After running the generator for a while I polled the boats, and no one said the noise was a problem, however our anchorages are rarely busy, and the gaps between boats can be relatively large. Although none of our neighbours said they found it annoying, and most said they couldn't even hear it -- I FOUND IT ANNOYING! Quite frankly, I think my fellow anchorage neighbours were just being nice .

My little experiment proved to me that while those little generators are not as annoying as a big genset, nor as loud or wasteful as running the ship's diesel, they are certainly not quiet, even in "eco" mode. I shall not sin again ... We are installing a new wing generator (one of those "silent" ones), and new solar panels for the coming season.
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  #43  
Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeOReilly View Post
most said they couldn't even hear it -- I FOUND IT ANNOYING! Quite frankly, I think my fellow anchorage neighbours were just being nice .
It's human behavior to not complain but then go seethe. It's nice of you to have gone around and asked. It gave them all the opportunity to express their real thoughts.

I recently had the reverse experience talking to a guy on a Hunter with his lil red Honda on the swim platform. He was saying how they couldn't hear it at all. The rest of the anchorage could because it was pointing at us!

It's nice that you are understanding of the noise.

Of course we must expect there to be odd situations, especially when outside the tropics where solar is abundant... If someone gets back to their boat late at night and sees the batteries are accidentally way down and they have a choice of loosing their frozen food, or damaging their batteries then they must charge immediately, and should feel free to do so.
We all make mistakes, and we all need to be understanding of it.
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Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

honestly.. I have no problems with people starting up a generator to charge batteries (or even cook as these new boats seem too dependant on electricity) but it is when people leave them running for hours on end...
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  #45  
Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

Quote:
Originally Posted by ellenwhite2 View Post
Being fairly new liveaboards (2yrs) and having hopped from secluded anchorages to marinas, we now find ourselves in a very crowded anchorage. I'm wondering what is proper generator running etiquette? Time guidelines? Perhaps this has been discussed in another thread, but my "search" isn't functioning correctly. Thanks!
I say we ban Ellen for starting such a controversial thread!! (She and I are friends, btw... see you in a couple of weeks or less!)

On topic: After sunrise and before sunset. Interesting timing here Ellen, because we all anchored out for one last hoorah at Longboat this last weekend, and someone had a generator going that night and the police stopped by the next morning and told all the boaters, "No generators after 1000 pm." For those that do not know, Longboat is a VERY tight anchorage with boats generally anchored within a few boat lengths or less. In fact, we saw a nice, high speed collision this weekend.

Off Topic:

This thread seems to have taken a "don't take or use a generator" bent to it. All of you that are arguing against generators, or their use, do you cruise fulltime?

I get the weekend warriors that can somehow make their battery banks last a few days. Of course, many of you are the same ones that leave the dock with two coolers full of ice (also called Cruiser's Gold)!! But after a few days (even with a large solar bank), your batteries are not getting fully charged and you will be surprised how quickly you will lose your power.

I personally have 780 watts (6-Kyocera 130 watt panels) on my boat and I still have issues when the sun does not participate. Now my example is a bit extreme because all four of us (the kids included) require computers and have to use them during the day (the kids are home schooled). However, 150 ah/day is not unreasonable for a cruiser with a fridge. I understand that there are some who can do without refrigeration, and Capt Aaron has my immense respect, but most cruisers I know who have tried to go minimalist do not last very long. And that is just for batteries!! We have not even disccused a windless night where the lows are in the mid 80s. We have not discussed hot water which goes very fast in cool/cold weather. We have not diuscussed making water, the microwave, toaster, coffee pot, etc. Sure, you can go without a lot of that stuff, but other than the fact it always makes the boat feel like you are camping out (compared to a home), now you are eating up propane. Diesel and gas are easy to get, but propane is a right PITA to get as a F/T cruiser. Sorry... just reality. If you do not run your generator, you will need some other way to charge your batteries. You can plug into a marina every other night, you can run your main (not much quieter with the spalsh-splash, incidentally), or you can put in a very expensive electrical charging system (solar, wind, large battery bank, etc).

Personally, I periodically use a Mastervolt Diesel generator. It is very hard to hear unless you are in the cockpit. You can hear the splashing though. It burns about a pint/hour of diesel. I can tell you that if you are a few boat legths away, you will not hear it. It does produce some fumes, but they are minimal. Its cost? Well, I guess installed around $15,000. How many of you want to go dump $15,000 in a quiet diesel generator so you do not upset the anchorage? I wouldn't. Solar? Well, you will likely need in the neighborhood or 4 130 watt panels to stay off the grid if you are conservative. Let's see... $2400 for the panels, $500 for the controller, $4000 (aluminum)-$10,000 (Stainless) for the arch (mine was $4), few hundred dollars for the wiring and connectors... and for the grand total of $7500-$13,500 (assuming you do the entire install yourself) you can be quiet... assuming the sun participates. You will still run low on power eventually and have to recharge as it is unlikely that you will always (sometimes never) get your batteries back to a full SOC. Oh, and that does not get you hot water.

So, if faced with putting off cruising for a while, or getting a little red Honda, which would you choose? If the choice was staying out cruising longer, using less money (boat dollars) or dumping $8-10,000 to be quiet, which would you choose? I mean, many people on Sailnet do not even have a $10,000 boat!!! $10,000 might be the total costs for cruising for a year.

All I am saying is have pity on those who run the generators. Many abuse it. I get that. But many more are doing what they are doing because they have to and took the least expensive option they could. And if I could do it all over, that little red thing would look awfully tempting versus the rediculous money I have spent to do without it.

My opinions,

Brian

PS Ellen - Kick Bob for me, ok?
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  #46  
Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruisingdad View Post
I say we ban Ellen for starting such a controversial thread!! (She and I are friends, btw... see you in a couple of weeks or less!)

On topic: After sunrise and before sunset. Interesting timing here Ellen, because we all anchored out for one last hoorah at Longboat this last weekend, and someone had a generator going that night and the police stopped by the next morning and told all the boaters, "No generators after 1000 pm." For those that do not know, Longboat is a VERY tight anchorage with boats generally anchored within a few boat lengths or less. In fact, we saw a nice, high speed collision this weekend.

Off Topic:

This thread seems to have taken a "don't take or use a generator" bent to it. All of you that are arguing against generators, or their use, do you cruise fulltime?

I get the weekend warriors that can somehow make their battery banks last a few days. Of course, many of you are the same ones that leave the dock with two coolers full of ice (also called Cruiser's Gold)!! But after a few days (even with a large solar bank), your batteries are not getting fully charged and you will be surprised how quickly you will lose your power.

I personally have 780 watts (6-Kyocera 130 watt panels) on my boat and I still have issues when the sun does not participate. Now my example is a bit extreme because all four of us (the kids included) require computers and have to use them during the day (the kids are home schooled). However, 150 ah/day is not unreasonable for a cruiser with a fridge. I understand that there are some who can do without refrigeration, and Capt Aaron has my immense respect, but most cruisers I know who have tried to go minimalist do not last very long. And that is just for batteries!! We have not even disccused a windless night where the lows are in the mid 80s. We have not discussed hot water which goes very fast in cool/cold weather. We have not diuscussed making water, the microwave, toaster, coffee pot, etc. Sure, you can go without a lot of that stuff, but other than the fact it always makes the boat feel like you are camping out (compared to a home), now you are eating up propane. Diesel and gas are easy to get, but propane is a right PITA to get as a F/T cruiser. Sorry... just reality. If you do not run your generator, you will need some other way to charge your batteries. You can plug into a marina every other night, you can run your main (not much quieter with the spalsh-splash, incidentally), or you can put in a very expensive electrical charging system (solar, wind, large battery bank, etc).

Personally, I periodically use a Mastervolt Diesel generator. It is very hard to hear unless you are in the cockpit. You can hear the splashing though. It burns about a pint/hour of diesel. I can tell you that if you are a few boat legths away, you will not hear it. It does produce some fumes, but they are minimal. Its cost? Well, I guess installed around $15,000. How many of you want to go dump $15,000 in a quiet diesel generator so you do not upset the anchorage? I wouldn't. Solar? Well, you will likely need in the neighborhood or 4 130 watt panels to stay off the grid if you are conservative. Let's see... $2400 for the panels, $500 for the controller, $4000 (aluminum)-$10,000 (Stainless) for the arch (mine was $4), few hundred dollars for the wiring and connectors... and for the grand total of $7500-$13,500 (assuming you do the entire install yourself) you can be quiet... assuming the sun participates. You will still run low on power eventually and have to recharge as it is unlikely that you will always (sometimes never) get your batteries back to a full SOC. Oh, and that does not get you hot water.

So, if faced with putting off cruising for a while, or getting a little red Honda, which would you choose? If the choice was staying out cruising longer, using less money (boat dollars) or dumping $8-10,000 to be quiet, which would you choose? I mean, many people on Sailnet do not even have a $10,000 boat!!! $10,000 might be the total costs for cruising for a year.

All I am saying is have pity on those who run the generators. Many abuse it. I get that. But many more are doing what they are doing because they have to and took the least expensive option they could. And if I could do it all over, that little red thing would look awfully tempting versus the rediculous money I have spent to do without it.

My opinions,

Brian

PS Ellen - Kick Bob for me, ok?

Agreed. For the most part

The OP posted on the etiquette of it. Personnally I dont care if you run your generator or not. Most of us are not cruisers and are "weekend warriors" as you determined it. There are not a lot of cruisers on the Chesapeake so most running generators for air conditioning or minor battery charging I assume. I have one of those Honda 2000 myself. It is not my concern how or why you have to recharge your batteries or run your air conditioner, nor is it my right to tell you not to do it, unless you have come into an anchorage after me and pulled upwind and I and others are choking on your fumes. My wife has a super sensitivity to fumes and smoke, and it can give her a potential asthma attack.

In actuallity I am not concerned about the noise as much as I am about the fumes coming off any of the generators. Most generators inboard and the HOndas are quite quiet when below for sure. However one wants to smell or be sickened by a generator of a boat who positions himself windward of you.

I think the proper etiquette is for those of you who anchor and need to run a generator to anchor on the peirphery of the anchorage areas if they are crowded, if possible so very few people if any are downwind of you. It IMHO is improper etiquette and downright rude if you know you will be using a generator, to pull into a crowded anchorage or any anchorage and purposely place other boats in your " fume shadow" and act like it is ok to ruin their anchoring experience. Doesnt make any difference if you are a cruiser, weekend warrior or day tripper, no one is less than. Its about being courteous.

I also beleive it is the responsibilty of boats who arrive after you to recognize you are running your generator and anchor themselves accordingly not down wind of you and not to blame you or expect you to shut your generator down.

Etiquette in this case is really courtesy and respecting others rights to breathe clean air.
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  #47  
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Re: anchorage etiquette

I was a guest on a friend's boat in a quiet anchorage, when another boat came in, anchored nearby, then proceeded to rev up a portable generator, put it into his dinghy, and push it away from his boat. The painter and the electrical cable were long enough for the dinghy to drift very close to our boat, making it noisy for us but quiet for our neighbour. My friend, without saying a word either to them or to me, quietly slipped overboard, swam underneath the dinghy and punched out the drain plug. We then sat back and watched the results. The folk on the other boat didn't appear to suspect what had actually happened.
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  #48  
Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

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Originally Posted by chef2sail View Post
Agreed. For the most part

The OP posted on the etiquette of it. Personnally I dont care if you run your generator or not. Most of us are not cruisers and are "weekend warriors" as you determined it. There are not a lot of cruisers on the Chesapeake so most running generators for air conditioning or minor battery charging I assume. I have one of those Honda 2000 myself. It is not my concern how or why you have to recharge your batteries or run your air conditioner, nor is it my right to tell you not to do it, unless you have come into an anchorage after me and pulled upwind and I and others are choking on your fumes. My wife has a super sensitivity to fumes and smoke, and it can give her a potential asthma attack.

In actuallity I am not concerned about the noise as much as I am about the fumes coming off any of the generators. Most generators inboard and the HOndas are quite quiet when below for sure. However one wants to smell or be sickened by a generator of a boat who positions himself windward of you.

I think the proper etiquette is for those of you who anchor and need to run a generator to anchor on the peirphery of the anchorage areas if they are crowded, if possible so very few people if any are downwind of you. It IMHO is improper etiquette and downright rude if you know you will be using a generator, to pull into a crowded anchorage or any anchorage and purposely place other boats in your " fume shadow" and act like it is ok to ruin their anchoring experience. Doesnt make any difference if you are a cruiser, weekend warrior or day tripper, no one is less than. Its about being courteous.

I also beleive it is the responsibilty of boats who arrive after you to recognize you are running your generator and anchor themselves accordingly not down wind of you and not to blame you or expect you to shut your generator down.

Etiquette in this case is really courtesy and respecting others rights to breathe clean air.
I have not cruised the Chessy (yet!!), but am curious how this is done? Here, your boat will often turn against the wind depending on the current. So you might anchor downwind, but when the tide shifts, you are now upwind. Also, many of the anchorages here are tight to very tight. Your choice of spots is limited to say the least.

I think the key is just doing it after sunrise and before sunset. And I don't know if it is just me, but the Honda generators dont even come close to comparing to the noise of many wind generators! MMMmmmmmmZZZZZzzzzz!!!!! So, should we suggest that those with wind generators shut theirs down at the same hours as a gas generator? Hmmm....

Brian
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  #49  
Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

Quote:
Originally Posted by alanporter View Post
I was a guest on a friend's boat in a quiet anchorage, when another boat came in, anchored nearby, then proceeded to rev up a portable generator, put it into his dinghy, and push it away from his boat. The painter and the electrical cable were long enough for the dinghy to drift very close to our boat, making it noisy for us but quiet for our neighbour. My friend, without saying a word either to them or to me, quietly slipped overboard, swam underneath the dinghy and punched out the drain plug. We then sat back and watched the results. The folk on the other boat didn't appear to suspect what had actually happened.
Funny, but wow. I would hope any neighbors near me would simply come and ask. I would be scared of the retribution had he found out.

Brian
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Old 03-12-2013
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Re: anchorage etiquette

what a bunch of thin skin sailors! LOL.

you don't know noise until you anchor at elliot key on a holiday weekend. Generators are the least of your problems!

there is nothing like an all night Latin party with subwoofers, and mega watt amps.

Oh man, how I wished for the steady drone of a generator's white noise...


Those 1000wt honda's are fine. run them all night.
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