Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 08-30-2015, 01:09 PM   #1
Guru
 
djmarchand's Avatar
 
City: East Greenwich, RI
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Bella
Vessel Model: Mainship Pilot 34
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2,878
The all electric boat, not propulsion

Some here have poo-pooed a cruising power boat which has no propane stove- only electric and secondarily the engine's coolant system is not hooked up to the hot water heater. So you have to run the genset (essential) for cooking and hot water heating. Some think that this is difficult and problematic.

We just got back from a week long cruise- Ct River to Block Island, Hadley Harbor near Woods Hole, Edgartown in Marthas Vinyard, Newport, RI and home. We have such a boat with no propane and no engine hot water heater. It worked very well.

This is how we used it.

Every morning when we were not cruising that day I would start the generator, a small 3.5 KW NextGen to make coffee and to recharge the batteries. I usually would run it for 15-30 minutes, maybe longer if the batteries were down. Then in the evening I would run it for 30 minutes or so to cook (well reheat mostly) anything on the stove for dinner and heat hot water. The batteries also recharged- more on that in another post.

So the average genset running time was about an hour daily. If I had a larger battery bank I could have used the inverter for coffee but since I needed to recharge batteries anyway why not use the genset.

Sure I need a generator to make this all work. Had the genset failed (and it sort of did half way through the trip with a plugged Racor filter) things would have been much tougher on board.

But the current set up works and the cost and effort to replace the stove, add a propane locker, plumb the engine's coolant to the water heater, just isn't worth it to me.

David
__________________
Advertisement

djmarchand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 01:32 PM   #2
Guru
 
djmarchand's Avatar
 
City: East Greenwich, RI
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Bella
Vessel Model: Mainship Pilot 34
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2,878
So for those who persevered though my first post in this thread, I am going to talk a bit about DC useage on my week long cruise and my boat's solar and genset charging system.


Early on in the trip our DC usage was fairly light. I would estimate 50 amp hours each 24 hours. We have a small Norcool fridge that uses about 3 amps DC while running and runs about 50% of the time. That is the biggest consumer at 36 AHs. Plus lights, cell and tablet recharging gets me to 50 AH.


We have a 100 watt solar panel that I installed mostly to keep the batteries up while on our mooring. It can produce about 30 AH on a sunny day. On a cloudy day we definitely need the genset and it will recharge the 220 AH dual golf cart battery bank at 50-75 amps through a 100 amp, 2,000 watt Freedom inverter/charger. So one hour of genset running time works fine with either clouds or bright sun.


All of this discussion is based on days at anchor. When we cruised to our next destination, about 4-5 hours on average, the propulsion engine would fully recharge the batteries.

About half way through the trip I got the bright idea of placing a bag of ice (which would normally last about a day or so in a separate cooler) in the 120V separate ice maker, turn the icemaking off and power it through the inverter. This worked great and a bag would last at least 3 days as we used it up. But it would take a lot of power.

The icemaker draws about 2 amps at 120V AC while running and the inverter needs 20 amps DC to power it. But since it is not making ice, just keeping the box cool, the cycle time is very short. I estimate that the compressor runs less than 10% of the time. But this adds quite a load, probably another 50 amp hours.

On a sunny day with an hour of genset running it would just about stay in balance. On a cloudy day it would be short and on that day I ran the genset for about an hour and a half.

All in all I am happy with our system. I might install another battery- which would be easy and cheap. If I were to cruise full time I would definitely want more solar capacity. But not on that boat- too small and the refrigerator is too small.


David
__________________

djmarchand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 02:20 PM   #3
TF Site Team
 
ksanders's Avatar
 
City: SEWARD ALASKA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: LISAS WAY
Vessel Model: BAYLINER 4788
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 3,954
We have an all electric boat. I do not look at that as a disadvantage, I look at it as an advantage.

Our boat is also a power hog. Yes, we have LED lights but we also have three refrigerator/freezers, a satellite communications system, entertainment, heating, and a host of other power using devices onbard . We have also recently added a large watermaker, a real power hog itself.

To support those power needs we have a 3,000 wat inverter, a 850 amp hour battery bank, a 150 amp charger, and a 150 amp alternator on one of our engines.

For AC power generation we have an excellent generator that is sized for our boat properly. You can barely hear our generator run.

All of this equipment is designed to work together while on the hook. We run the generator in the morning and in the evening. This is when we use our stove, so we cook food, recharge the batteries, and desalinate water all at the same time.

What I like about our system is that it minimizes what I have to do to keep the boat provisioned.

Propane is not even a consideration. Now dock or marina water is not either. With our waste processing system all we need is food and diesel fuel. An occasional trip to the dumpster for trash and we are good to go.

We have zero lifestyle compromises on our boat. If we want to heat up some soup, we use the microwave, just like at home. If we want to surf the web, we are connected. If we want to take a long shower we never run out of hot water.

You can have that with a propane boat as well, just for us we cook with electric at home and felt there was no need for propane.
__________________
Kevin Sanders
Bayliner 4788
Seward, Alaska
www.mvlisasway.com
ksanders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 04:14 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
mahal's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 436
At our main boating destination, Catalina island, generator running isn't allowed between 10pm and 7am. I like cooking breakfast before 7 so an all electric boat wouldn't work for us. I understand that it is much easier for the builder to install an electric stove instead of a propane one, but I'm glad the builder of ours didn't go that route.
mahal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:07 PM   #5
Art
Guru
 
Art's Avatar
 
City: SF Bay Area
Country: USA
Vessel Model: Tollycraft 34' Tri Cabin
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 7,979
Our Tolly is 100% electric... Stove, oven, 120v ac fridge, micro, hot water (stbd mtr also heats water), 12v dc and 120 ac lights. We often anchor, turn off motors and don't restart for some # of days, even a week. Gen-set is Kohler 7.5 Kw. We run it loaded for about hour in morn and same in eve... sometimes a bit longer or shorter (1.5 +/- gallons per day). Everything stays usable. Only item I'm looking to add is maybe a small portable 12v fridge/ice-maker... we have OK coolers but still buy too much ice for cold drinks. Drinking/cooking water comes from home in gallon bottles with package[s] of small plastic bottles as needed.
Art is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:10 PM   #6
Guru
 
Ski in NC's Avatar
 
City: Wilmington, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Louisa
Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 3,884
Dave- what kind of icemaker are you using?
Ski in NC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:11 PM   #7
Guru
 
twistedtree's Avatar
 
City: Gloucester, MA
Country: USA
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 3,187
I was talking with someone the other day about the pros and cons of two different ways to configure a boat. I don't even recall what it was - it was just another thing that we could all debate for ever. One person chimed in an said it doesn't matter - whichever you have, you will adapt. Those were some of the wisest words I've heard in a long time, and I think it applies to so many of the this-way-or-that-way debates that we have, whether it's electric vs gas, single engine vs twin engine, which way your windows slant, dry vs wet exhaust, paravanes vs stabilizers, etc. etc. Other than making for fun conversation, it just doesn't matter. You will adapt to whatever you have, and figure out how to make it work. Your trip and use of the onboard electrical system is a great example. And I'm sure you had just as much fun as someone with some other system arrangement.
__________________
www.MVTanglewood.com
twistedtree is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:12 PM   #8
Guru
 
BandB's Avatar
 
City: Fort Lauderdale
Country: USA
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 13,141
We have all electric, including electric grills. I don't like propane from a safety point of view, but I also don't like having to refill it regularly or it running out. Every time I see someone at a marina with their tanks, heading up the dock and then off to the nearest filling or exchange station, I'm glad it's not me.
BandB is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:20 PM   #9
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 15,887
If all you are is cooking with propane...a 20 pound tank lasts a long time unless you bake or oven roast a lot.


We get a year out of ours and liveaboard...we do have a hotplate when at dock for simple meals. The grill and slow cooker get their fair share...the slow cooker runs all day off an inverter when underway.


But don't get me wrong....nothing wrong with all electric... but I am headed a different way.


My budget may get tight at times...and a 12 volt boat may be the ticket. So many marinas are starting to get ridiculous with transient electric fees and metering if you want to stay in a high electric area could be steep too. Heading that way will probably allow me to drop from an 8KW genset to a 5 or less as a bonus.
psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:23 PM   #10
Art
Guru
 
Art's Avatar
 
City: SF Bay Area
Country: USA
Vessel Model: Tollycraft 34' Tri Cabin
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 7,979
One non-electric item I did not mention in post 5 is Magma BBQ; powered by stubby, small propane bottles. Easy to use bottle lasts quite a while, always have spares aboard, sold all over, and it powers my Bernz-o-Matic torch head when needed!
Art is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 05:27 PM   #11
Guru
 
djmarchand's Avatar
 
City: East Greenwich, RI
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Bella
Vessel Model: Mainship Pilot 34
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2,878
Ski:


Don't know the make, but haven't looked hard to find out. Next time I am at the boat I will try harder. This one on Amazon is of a similar size and is better because it is front vented: http://www.amazon.com/Whynter-UIM-15...ords=ice+maker


twistedtree:


You are absolutely correct. You adapt to what you have.


Our previous power boat was a Mainship 34T flybridge trawler that I ordered new with a propane stove. I was a little miffed that Mainship didn't hook up the engine's cooling system to the hot water heater. But with a little help from boatdiesel and some heater hose I got it all hooked up. It worked like the sailboats I had previously owned.


This new to me all electric boat put me off a bit at first. But I quickly figured out how to use it and I have grown to like the system. I particularly like having the ability to recharge batteries by running the genset for any length of time needed. On previous sailboats with no generator I ran the propulsion engine at anchor (not good for it) to charge the batteries and finally added enough solar panels to keep the batteries up.


David
djmarchand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 07:50 PM   #12
Guru
 
motion30's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 740
I have an all electric boat except for this propane-powered grill which is mostly what I use for cooking. This summer I installed 825 watts of solar which takes care of all the 12 Volt needs including the refrigerator. I have over a thousand Amps of golf cart batteries. as long as the sun is shining I can go many days I must I need the air conditioning then I must run the Westerbeke generator. I also have a 32 inch TV and satellite system which are both 12 volt
motion30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 09:49 PM   #13
Guru
 
BandB's Avatar
 
City: Fort Lauderdale
Country: USA
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 13,141
Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
If all you are is cooking with propane...a 20 pound tank lasts a long time unless you bake or oven roast a lot.

.
Certainly the size and BTU of your grill is a huge factor. I had one at our previous house in NC where a tank lasted on average a month. I grilled nearly every night and the grill was 60,000 BTU. So guess I'm thinking outside the usage most boats would have.

Still I do see a lot of people lugging tanks up docks. But I do realize a small grill or oven used occasionally isn't going to go through the propane like I did.
BandB is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 09:57 PM   #14
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 15,887
Quote:
Originally Posted by BandB View Post
Certainly the size and BTU of your grill is a huge factor. I had one at our previous house in NC where a tank lasted on average a month. I grilled nearly every night and the grill was 60,000 BTU. So guess I'm thinking outside the usage most boats would have.

Still I do see a lot of people lugging tanks up docks. But I do realize a small grill or oven used occasionally isn't going to go through the propane like I did.
True...I was talking stovetop/oven...huge grills will eat up the propane for as little as they ultimately cook.


Just have a little grill as most marinas are against grilling on the boat and actually provide grills.
psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2015, 10:13 PM   #15
Guru
 
BandB's Avatar
 
City: Fort Lauderdale
Country: USA
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 13,141
Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post

Just have a little grill as most marinas are against grilling on the boat and actually provide grills.
That's also where an electric grill comes through. No flames so ok to use.
BandB is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2015, 12:37 AM   #16
Guru
 
Hawgwash's Avatar
 
City: Sidney
Country: Canada
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 2,265
Quote:
Originally Posted by BandB View Post
That's also where an electric grill comes through. No flames so ok to use.
Have you found an electric grill that can do more than curl the corners of a cheese sandwich?
Hawgwash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2015, 12:41 AM   #17
TF Site Team
 
ksanders's Avatar
 
City: SEWARD ALASKA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: LISAS WAY
Vessel Model: BAYLINER 4788
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 3,954
Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
True...I was talking stovetop/oven...huge grills will eat up the propane for as little as they ultimately cook.


Just have a little grill as most marinas are against grilling on the boat and actually provide grills.
Our marina says no BBQ

What they mean is no BBQ bricket or other type of wood product burning BBQ.

They consider a propane BBQ to be a outdoor cooking appliance.
__________________
Kevin Sanders
Bayliner 4788
Seward, Alaska
www.mvlisasway.com
ksanders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2015, 01:20 AM   #18
Guru
 
BandB's Avatar
 
City: Fort Lauderdale
Country: USA
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 13,141
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
Have you found an electric grill that can do more than curl the corners of a cheese sandwich?
Yes..Kenyon, Gaggenau, and Miele.

Oh and if you just want to grill for two people, an absolutely wonderful new kitchen appliance is the T-Fal Optigrill. Plus easy to clean. It's truly an indoor grill. Know by comparison I never liked any Foreman grill. Most indoor grills either didn't heat enough or were too difficult to clean. Before the T-Fal the best I'd found was Breville Smart Grill. And I'd tried nearly every indoor grill made at one time or another. My wife will testify I love kitchen gadgets.

We have incredible gas grills at home up to 98,000 BTU and they'll definitely get more heat. However, the electrics will grill as well or better than the typical propane grill you find on a boat. I think better because the heat is more even.
BandB is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2015, 01:49 AM   #19
Master and Commander
 
markpierce's Avatar
 
City: Vallejo CA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Carquinez Coot
Vessel Model: 2011 Seahorse Marine Coot hull #6
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 10,262
Another engine and its related systems to purchase, house, and maintain? Not requiring A/C, having a gas stove, and not wanting to spend more than two nights at anchor at the same location at a time; no way hoezay.

How many disdain propane and are worried about the danger when they have a gas-powered dinghy onboard?
__________________
Kar-KEEN-ez Koot
markpierce is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2015, 01:59 AM   #20
Guru
 
BandB's Avatar
 
City: Fort Lauderdale
Country: USA
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 13,141
Quote:
Originally Posted by markpierce View Post

How many disdain propane and are worried about the danger when they have a gas-powered dinghy onboard?
That's a tough question. Would I prefer not having gas onboard? Yes. I say this in spite of the fact every boat I owned prior to three years ago was gas. However, I do feel less uncomfortable about gas than I do about propane, simply because I do feel like the steps I've taken to be safe with gas are good. Could I do the same with propane? Yes, but I don't because I don't feel the need to do so. I have no option to the gas that I find satisfactory, but I do have suitable options to the propane.
__________________

BandB is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:51 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012