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Old 02-05-2019, 07:42 PM   #1
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Bahama Trip/ generator/KK or N

I am doing a solo trip to the Bahamas in March, but based on the Fisher Panda generator issues I have had and the need for “hook” generation of electricity to at least charge my batteries I have concerns. I have an outboard boat (Pursuit 365I) and a FP mini 8 diesel generator that has not started or has broken down twice in 3 months for at least 4weeks down time. I run it every week under load and until the cyl temps are high enough and still there are problems. The weekend before it wouldn’t start, I ran it 7 hours. Therefore I am thinking about a backup system, solar or a little Honda gas generator. I would not run the Honda at night due to exhaust. I know nothing about solar on a boat.
If I like this cruising life a N or a KK will be in my life, currently just me and a 8 lb dog, so what would the group recommend? I like the beam and asymmetrical aspects of the KK 44/48. The 39 could work as well. The N don’t seem to be quite as roomy. I am concerned about the lack of get home power in the KK. I can imagine going as far as the ABC’s, but no further. At least I will have a boat designed and thought out for the mission and they don’t seem to use FP.
Thank you
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Old 02-05-2019, 08:07 PM   #2
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I would go with the Honda for this trip.

I would lean toward a KK if you decide you want to do more. While backup propulsion would be wonderful, rebuilding the primary drive train and carrying spares, will reduce the risk to getting struck by lightning. The other alternative is to find people you would like to buddy boat with.

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Old 02-05-2019, 10:27 PM   #3
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Assuming your battery bank is relatively small and you are using a small amount of power (say < 100 AH/day).

I would go for the Honda and one solar panel. Run the Honda for a few hours in the morning to get the batteries up to 80% or 90% then the solar can top them off. If you change boats you can bring the generator with you to the new boat or sell it.
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Old 02-06-2019, 06:58 AM   #4
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It sounds like you will do a long term cruising trip of a month or more. In that case a solar panel system will probably be better as it takes no attention.


I wrote a three part series of articles on solar power that you can download from the Forum's library: Trawler Forum - Library - Systems. Start with the one on sizing which looks at battery capacity, usage patterns, etc. Then read the one on installing a large solar panel system. If you do it yourself you can install a 3-400 watt panel system for the cost of the Honda.


If you decide to use a Honda generator, think about how much current your shore power charger draws. A 100A charger often draws 15+ amps at the beginning of a charge cycle and that is too much for the continuous rating of the Honda 2000. Newer 2,200 watt ratings from Honda and Yamaha may be able to handle it though.


Also for charging batteries powered from a generator you do need a decent sized charger. Trying to charge a 220 Ah bank with a 20A charger will take a long generator running time and won't be very efficient.


As noted above, an intermediate system would be a Honda generator, powering a decent sized shore power charger with a 100 watt solar panel to top off the batteries. Look at my first article "Solar Panels for Your Boat" which discusses small solar systems. A 100 watt panel can be installed yourself for about $200.


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Old 02-07-2019, 09:33 AM   #5
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We spent the entire summer of 2017 (April - October) on a mooring using nothing but a Honda 2K. We spent 28 days cruising in the summer of 2018 with the same Honda 2K.

Our LOA is 39 feet. It'll run everything, just not all at once. We run it for a few hours in the morning and a few hours in the evening. Top off the hotwater twice a day (unless it is a day underway when the engine takes care of it). We run the battery charger twice a day.

It'll even run the 5K A/C unit in the berths and head. (Not the 15K in the Salon). However, you do need to pick and choose what you run. You need to watch the amp draw on the AC side, and not exceed around 13 amps. This means hotwater heater, until it steps down, then battery charger. You'll have to learn to balance loads.
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Old 02-07-2019, 10:07 AM   #6
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My vote is Honda (or equiv) gen, they just run and run. I bought a fuel tank adapter on ebay which connects to my 6 gallon outboard tank. Almost every street side vendor in New York City uses them, everyday all day. Take out the FP and sell for parts, removes some weight.
Sounds like a great trip, enjoy!!
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Old 02-07-2019, 10:20 AM   #7
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A neighbor runs his 16K AC from his Honda 2000 when they’re out he says. He added an easy start by Micro-Air. He did said he has to make sure nothing else is on. For $300? Could be worth it.

https://www.microair.net/collections...nt=30176048267

https://www.microair.net/pages/marin...-resource-page
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