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Old 01-04-2016, 01:09 PM   #21
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I have run many different boats over the years and have run too may with underpowered thrusters. Since the normal crew on our TF boats are a husband and wife, happiness while docking is worth a few extra bucks for the right power unit.
I have to give credit to someone here on TF who posted this picture a few years ago.
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Old 01-04-2016, 01:49 PM   #22
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now thats a bow thruster. LOL
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Old 01-04-2016, 01:50 PM   #23
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Before purchasing ANY thruster find out the allowed ON time and the required OFF time ..

On time is frequently in seconds , Off time in minuets.

Folks pay the extra for HYD for a reason.
hyd and 120VAC
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Old 01-04-2016, 01:53 PM   #24
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On a properly sized thruster 5 seconds seems like a long time, 10 an eternity. Count it off sometime...
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Old 01-04-2016, 02:18 PM   #25
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I ran my boat a few years with no thruster. Best learning experience ever. Since installing it, I have never run it for more than maybe 10 sec as I already made my plans to do the maneuver without it. Never had it thermal out, not sure how long the run time is.
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Old 01-04-2016, 04:26 PM   #26
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In preparation for doing a repower in a couple of months, I am also doing research and collecting the other components for several upgrades while the boat is in the yard. The boat currently does not have a bow thruster, so I am looking for opinions of which brands to consider. The boat will not be equipped with a hydraulic pump, so the thruster will be electric and my first thought is to keep it simple at 12V. The boat is 40 (34 7 LWL) by 13 8, 30,000 pounds, 4 draft. My current short list is the Side Power SE 80/185 T or the Vetus BOW7512D.

Thanks.

Bob
I would go with the 100 SE Sidepower on a 24v batt with a separate charger. It's not much more money than the 80 and it's way stronger--think wind and current. We put one on our 36 Sabre and have not regretted it.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:13 PM   #27
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Back from the boat. Thanks for responses. Lots of good info to study!

I took lots of measurements and thought it through. I am going to step it up to 24V as recommended and will likely step it up to the Sidepower 100 rather than the 80. I found a place against the forward ER bulkhead to expand the battery bank. That puts the thruster 5' from the batteries. Real-estate is a premium in this ER. And there is just not enough room where I hope to put the thruster and also have reasonable access to batteries (see picture). I am going to see if the yard can install the thruster under that forward cabin floor hatch which is only 13 1/2" by 18 1/2". It is 30" to the bottom of the bilge. They will need a thin youngster to get into that spot. If installed there, it would put the tube about 4' back from the bow at the waterline. The other option is to cut about 2' out of the bottom of a deep storage compartment under the V-birth. It's 41" deep and is where I store the downriggers and crab pot puller, so I don't want to cut it unless I have to. The last picture is from a boat like mine and they cut the bottom out of the compartment to install a thruster. In that boat, it looks like you would have to dive head first into a rabbit hole to work on the thruster. I don't think I could do it. If installed under that floor hatch, I could lay on the head and cabin floor to reach it. Either way, it looks like it's going to be a difficult job.

Bob
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:18 PM   #28
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I have to give credit to someone here on TF who posted this picture a few years ago.
Now that's funny! Love that picture.
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:14 AM   #29
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Consider the possible advantages of using AGM batteries, which can be mounted at a variety of angles and don't need easy access for maintenance. A couple of Group 31's will likely do the trick (though I haven't looked at the specs for the thruster you contemplate).
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Old 01-05-2016, 08:50 AM   #30
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Remwines,

The thruster needs to be well underwater, or it will cavitate especially if it's a bigger one. Once it cavitates, you are blowing air, not water and your effectiveness drops. Not to mention that cavitation can damage the prop[s] on the thruster.

I would opt for the bottom of the storage compartment.

Stu
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Old 01-05-2016, 09:34 AM   #31
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Yea, my shallow draft boat I put the thruster as low as I could and still when offshore the thing will ventilate when I am pulling up the anchor for diving or fishing. No windlass for me, so it's nice to have thruster to get right over the hook.

Put it as low as you can.
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Old 01-05-2016, 10:34 AM   #32
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More information would be good, I`m considering installing an Exturn next haul out.
Any photos of it installed? Was it difficult to attach, does it require fiberglass work to create a base for it? Did you need to add any battery(I`m hoping to use the windlass power supply)? What wattage does it draw? Any discernible effect on performance/speed? Anything else you can pass on from the experience?
Hi, Bruce,

I'll get photos uploaded this afternoon from the home computer.

The install was very easy; it took more time to plan the electrical layout and control layout than to do the actual install.

We started the external thruster install on a Friday afternoon, and were completed by Saturday afternoon. This time included the drilling of the mounting holes, priming and painting of the unit, hanging the relays, and the physical installation of the thruster itself. I installed the Duplex model, so there were 2 2" main holes and 4 3/4" stabilizing holes drilled into the hull bottom.

For the electrical side, I installed 2 Optima AGM Bluetop batteries, a dedicated 12V charger, the thruster fuses, and power shutoff switch under the forward bunk. I did the electrical side of the install just before we hauled out, while the boat was afloat. This part of the install took about 3 hours.

We've had the boat out several times, and there is no difference in handling or speed I've noticed. The thruster is placed at the forefoot of the boat, and does not cavitate when in use. The thruster is quiet, and pushes the boat in a controlled manner. It is very effective in windy situations.

Install tips- Exturn/Yacht Thruster recommended that I plan the install in detail before hauling, and have wiring pre-cut with end lugs installed. I did so, and it made all the difference in the ease of installation. I used 2/0 wire for all power connection, with all lugs crimped and shrink-wrapped. Otherwise, the Exturn installation instructions are pretty straightforward.

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Old 01-05-2016, 11:47 AM   #33
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Remwines,

The thruster needs to be well underwater, or it will cavitate especially if it's a bigger one. Once it cavitates, you are blowing air, not water and your effectiveness drops. Not to mention that cavitation can damage the prop[s] on the thruster.

I would opt for the bottom of the storage compartment.

Stu
Hey Stu. If I have it mounted where I want it with access through the cabin floor, the center of the tube will be about 3' under water on a 4' draft. If I install it at the bottom of that compartment, it will be 2 to 2 1/2' under as the bow is rising in that area. I attached a picture take a few years ago during the pre-purchase/survey. The tube will be about 6" lower than the middle guy's hand and about foot more forward. If installed through the compartment, it will be another foot forward and 6" to 12" higher.

Bob
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Old 01-05-2016, 11:53 AM   #34
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On a properly sized thruster 5 seconds seems like a long time, 10 an eternity. Count it off sometime...
Agreed.
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Old 01-05-2016, 12:17 PM   #35
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Hey Stu. If I have it mounted where I want it with access through the cabin floor, the center of the tube will be about 3' under water on a 4' draft. If I install it at the bottom of that compartment, it will be 2 to 2 1/2' under as the bow is rising in that area. I attached a picture take a few years ago during the pre-purchase/survey. The tube will be about 6" lower than the middle guy's hand and about foot more forward. If installed through the compartment, it will be another foot forward and 6" to 12" higher.

Bob
Sidepower has excellent documents and YouTube videos giving tips and formulas for positioning the thruster tube. The deeper the better to a point, the further forward, the better, to a point. Recirculation can become a problem as well. I recommend downloading and reading, or viewing, no matter which manufacture you choose.

I used strong earth magnets on the inside and outside of the hull to plan out the tube location.

You have to allow for working room in the inside of the hull under the tube. Some poor soul has stand on their head to tab and glass or epoxy it in. A little room there makes the job easier and inherently better.

Keep in mind that a properly installed tube actually increases strength of the hull at the bow.
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Old 01-05-2016, 01:23 PM   #36
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Hey Stu. If I have it mounted where I want it with access through the cabin floor, the center of the tube will be about 3' under water on a 4' draft. If I install it at the bottom of that compartment, it will be 2 to 2 1/2' under as the bow is rising in that area. I attached a picture take a few years ago during the pre-purchase/survey. The tube will be about 6" lower than the middle guy's hand and about foot more forward. If installed through the compartment, it will be another foot forward and 6" to 12" higher.

Bob
That looks like a great location.
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Old 01-05-2016, 01:57 PM   #37
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I have a boat that matches yours; installed a Sidepower last year. It works great and has never given me a problem. I went with the 12v to avoid separate charger, etc. Everything that has been posted here is spot on. The yard that did the job calculated I needed the SE 80/185T. When I back out of the slip an need to make a 90 deg turn I have to stay on the switch for a long time (15+ sec). If I had it to do over I would have nothing less than the SE100 at 24V. As has already been stated, you can never have to much power. I love my Sidepower thruster but take my advice; for your boat go with nothing less than the 8hp. If you can afford it maybe one step larger. I promise, you'll never regret it. Good luck.
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:11 PM   #38
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Sidepower has excellent documents and YouTube videos giving tips and formulas for positioning the thruster tube. The deeper the better to a point, the further forward, the better, to a point. Recirculation can become a problem as well. I recommend downloading and reading, or viewing, no matter which manufacture you choose.

I used strong earth magnets on the inside and outside of the hull to plan out the tube location.

You have to allow for working room in the inside of the hull under the tube. Some poor soul has stand on their head to tab and glass or epoxy it in.
Thanks. I looked at several of those videos and read the installation manual. I feel good about my preferred location. It will come down to the ability of someone squeezing into that tight spot. I would do it myself, but I'm not as agile and narrow as I once was. The magnets was a good suggestion and I have a couple that will do the job.

Bob
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:30 PM   #39
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I have a boat that matches yours; installed a Sidepower last year. It works great and has never given me a problem. I went with the 12v to avoid separate charger, etc. Everything that has been posted here is spot on. The yard that did the job calculated I needed the SE 80/185T. When I back out of the slip an need to make a 90 deg turn I have to stay on the switch for a long time (15+ sec). If I had it to do over I would have nothing less than the SE100 at 24V. As has already been stated, you can never have to much power. I love my Sidepower thruster but take my advice; for your boat go with nothing less than the 8hp. If you can afford it maybe one step larger. I promise, you'll never regret it. Good luck.
Dixie Life: Thanks for posting this. I am going with the SE 100 in 24V. According to Sidepower specs, my boat falls right in the middle of the SE 80 range. But I would want to make a 90 deg spin in much less than 15 seconds. The SE 100 is about $1000 more and sounds like a wise investment.
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:59 PM   #40
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