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Old 11-08-2006, 20:16   #1
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Electric tender motor

Hi
has any body tried the electric 'outboards' that are available for tenders? We have just bought a Beneteau 41s5 but it has no tender with it at all. I am leaning toward an inflatable with a blow up floor and keel but the engine to drive it is a problem. We would like to stay away from carry petrol if we can.

Glenda
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Old 11-08-2006, 22:19   #2
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This is my opinion only, you may have a different experience. I do not like the blow up floors, When getting in and out of the dinghy, and handing things in and out, the wood floors feel much more stable to me. As for the electric trolling motors, I know people who use them, but with a big enough battery to have any range, you do not save any weight, the battery needs to be charged, which can be an inconvenience on board, and If you run out of juice on your way to the dinghy dock, it can be a long row back. I understand the logic, and would like to avoid gas on my boat as well, but over the years have found the convenience of a gas outboard to outweigh all other issues.
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Old 11-08-2006, 22:29   #3
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Aloha Glenda,

Yes I sent this under the Dinghy Outboard Motors

I respectfully disagree with Kai. Anything to save us from fossil fuel dependence is a plus. In an emergency situation where pure power is needed I will opt for a small outboard maybe up to 6hp. For now I'm happy with the little electric and a 4hp Johnson backup. Inflatables are slower and require more power but you can still use electric.

I've been using a MinnKota 27lb thrust electric on my 11ft hard dinghy for quite some time. It gets me where I need to go on a calm day but have not used it in heavy weather. I used my old '55 5hp Gale the last big storm we had and it worked ok.
Has anyone else considered using electric? Just requires a freshly charged battery from time to time that you can recharge with a solar panel. West Marine also sells 50lb thrust models that our club uses on our West Wight Potter 19. It works great.
Regards, --JohnL--
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Old 11-08-2006, 23:22   #4
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Are you going to use your tender for away from home cruising? I ask because when you are on the hook, electricity "tends" to be a precious commodity. How will you recharge your battery? It may not make sense to charge the battery in your dinghy by using fossil fuels to create the energy.

How do you generated energy aboard? How is your consumption in relation to your generated output?

Next, how will you use your tender? We did a LOT of exploring in ours. It was usually easier to find a good anchorage then explore with the dinghy, as opposed to moving the boat. How many people, how far away do you have to anchor from those essential services (Alcohol, food, fuel, friends, laundry, booze, internet, parts you didn't bring, booze etc.)

If you're in a marina, definately an electric, if not, Hmmm,,, more difficult.

Oh, and Hardbottoms are good, if you can get them up on a plane! Might not be possible with an electric.
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Old 12-08-2006, 01:21   #5
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Thanks for the replys and comments. As we haven't even taken over this boat yet I cannot comment on the energy consumption. Certainly in the first place we will only sailing around adelaide and it's gulfs, but I do a fair amount of diving and may use it to dive from. I would probably charge it with solar as suggested
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Old 12-08-2006, 08:33   #6
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Hmmm... We use our's for diving. Our dinghy is 11 feet long. When we load our tanks, weights, BCs, fins, masks and the two of us, it makes for a very heavy dinghy. Our dinghy is a rigid fiberglass bottom which gives us a solid place to set the equipment. With all this equipment and a 10 horse power motor it is almost impossible for us to come up on plane. Not a biggy, just very slow.

How about stability? We take our tanks out in the water then launch ourselves in over the gunwhales. WE grab a line on the opposite side and pull ourselves in. Pretty inellegant, but it works.

Good luck, I am very interested in seeing if it works out!

Keith
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Old 12-08-2006, 22:21   #7
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How about a trolling motor as a backup???? I am thinking of that for my Catalina 27
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Old 13-08-2006, 02:02   #8
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Aloha Ex,
Our club uses a 50lb thrust electric trolling motor for the West Wight Potter 19 as the primary auxiliary. We don't use a gas outboard. It gets us on and off the mooring and up the Wailoa River for haulout just fine. The Potter is quite a bit smaller and at 1300 lbs quite a bit lighter than your 27 but the electric would move your 27 around very well in light air. Borrow one from a friend and try it. You'll like it - guaranteed.
Kind Regards, --JohnL--
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Old 24-12-2013, 06:07   #9
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Re: Electric tender motor

I too and looking at elect...I have a 5 hp 2cyc now for mine but i have a bad back and also single handed so getting it on and off the block and onto the tender is not on...Yes i know there are hoist but they cost an arm and leg...I have rigged my whisper pole and spare hayard to lift the tender on and off the deck...but the motor is the problem. There are some really good points about the battery and elect and the storage of gas. The one good point is the comment about on and off the tender in a solid vs air bottom...I can see that point and may look at replacing mine just for that reason....
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Old 24-12-2013, 12:06   #10
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Re: Electric tender motor

Hi Hank,
You'll see that my last post on this thread was in 2006. I haven't changed my mind too much since then except that there are more expensive Minn Kotas for saltwater environment that are better than the 27lb thrust one I used to use. And its best to always rinse them in freshwater after use.
Also, if you need extra push or want to do long motoring times the electric may not be the best choice. In those cases gas is more suited.
The introduction of the Torqueedo is something that came into being after my post and we have one for use on our Folkboat which is a 26 footer. It does well on and off the mooring and up the short river once in awhile. While being very much more expensive it also is more ruggid.
Before purchasing, borrow one from a friend and try it out.
kind regards,
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Old 24-12-2013, 12:28   #11
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Re: Electric tender motor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hank Kivett View Post
...I have a 5 hp 2cyc now for mine but i have a bad back and also single handed so getting it on and off the block and onto the tender is not on...
The battery for the trolling motor will outweigh the motor. A bit less unwieldy but not better for a bad back.
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Old 24-12-2013, 13:10   #12
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Re: Electric tender motor

To put new life in an old thread, I chose one of the new Lehr motors for our dinghy, since I also wanted to avoid the fumes and hassle of gasoline. Since we carry disposable propane in our locker for our bar-b-que, I didn't have to add another fuel type on board. The 2.5 was great, a bit heavy, but I didn't own it long enough to see how it fared for reliability: alas, it was stolen from the dinghy with only about 5 hours on it, in broad daylight, at a yacht club with quite a few people around.
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Old 25-12-2013, 10:15   #13
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Re: Electric tender motor

"...but with a big enough battery to have any range, you do not save any weight,..."
You actually don't need to carry a big battery. I use a 30lb Minnkota on my canoe. I carry two 35 Amp Hour batteries that weigh 24 pounds each. This is much easier to handle than a single big battery. When the first battery runs down, I know it's time to head home on the second battery. I've travelled several miles with this rig.

I've also used it on my inflatable to ferry people to shore and back to their boats at a club outing. Worked fine for that.

I also own a Lehr 2.5 propane engine that I use on my inflatable. It gives me all day range when I hook it to an 11 pound propane tank. I love that it can sit for weeks and still start on the first pull. I should tell you that I'm a Lehr dealer as well as a Lehr user. Anybody want to buy one, I'd love to quote you.
Lehr Propane Outboards

Shorebird I'd love to sell you a replacement but I'm afraid the shipping to Canada might make it cheaper to buy locally. If you have any questions about the Lehr, I'd be glad to talk to you about them.
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