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Old 14-05-2015, 23:55   #16
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

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Originally Posted by Ironman162 View Post
Good point!

It depends where you end up I guess. If you stick to the basics and have power limitations you are 100% correct, the bigger inverters have a poor efficiency.

I however started out just wanting to charge the phone when out at sea.
Only too soon I found that I kept adding things like a small fridge, a stereo, better sound system, power tools for maintenace jobs and so on.

Loaded, the Powerjack inverters efficiency is around the 80% mark although its rated much higher at over 90%

Needless to say, Im a motor cruiser and a luxuary junkie down to an electric blanket on cold nights

Fortunately I do have excess power at a price so its not too critical in my setup.

The joys of sail boaters vs stinkpots!
Given that its a sail boat thread I prob shouldnt have commented
The price of inverters is low enough that you can have both on a sailboat--a 2000W and a 150W. You just have to remember to turn off the big inverter when it is not needed.
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Old 15-05-2015, 02:14   #17
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

OP said they needed to charge one notebook and one iPad. The iPad can be charged with any high power USB adapter that plugs into an existing "car lighter" socket. That's cheap and efficient.


The notebook can use a similar travel adapter from Kensington or iGo or a dozen other companies, many are AC/DC dual units, many have multiple power plugs so they can work with many computers, many also offer a USB connection which takes care of the iPad at the same time.


Buy some cheap POS inverter won't be as economical or reliable as buying a decent DC travel adapter for the equipment. Unless there's some AC equipment that really needs AC...skip the inverter until it is needed. Then get one for whatever the need is.


And the cheap ones, are rarely reliable OR anything near pure sine wave.
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Old 15-05-2015, 05:32   #18
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

I use lighter socket for my tablet/phone/laptop. I also use 12v cordless power tools so i can charge from lighter socket too. IMO thinking purely 12v on a sailboat is the way to go, but for the odd occasion i want AC, I have this (also charged from lighter socket)

http://www.autosportcatalog.com/wagan-power-dome-400.cfm?sc=58447&creative={creative}&pc=9NPATJ9Z&u tm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=wagan%2Bpow er%2Bdome%2Bjumper&utm_campaign=bingcpc

Peace
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Old 15-05-2015, 06:04   #19
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Buy some cheap POS inverter won't be as economical or reliable as buying a decent DC travel adapter for the equipment. Unless there's some AC equipment that really needs AC...skip the inverter until it is needed. Then get one for whatever the need is.


And the cheap ones, are rarely reliable OR anything near pure sine wave.
Fully agree on all points.
I installed a couple of USB sockets in the cabins so we can keep all the gizmos charged. In my previous boat I also had a DC-DC stepup converter for the laptop but that has been replaced by a tablet now.

The boat came with a cheap 300w "near sine" inverter that was pretty useless, even smaller appliances would overload it, many electronic devices either don't work or don't charge. Some appliances do work but make funny noises, run at lower speed or get hot.
Completely useless device.

I suggest to get a pure sine wave, that way you are sure you can run anything within the inverter's power limits and don't run into surprises. How big depends on your needs and your battery bank.
We now have a 1000w pure sine inverter made by sterling power , found an older unused unit on ebay for just 180 Euro.
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Old 15-05-2015, 22:46   #20
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

I have been using a small solar panel with a cheap controller for "gadgets" and it has been working great. I made the panel with left over 3x6 cells from a solar panel project...I charge all my small stuff...I also have a solar charger for AA and AAA batteries for other gadgets...I guess I'm just a gadget minded guy...
Hope you find what's good for you...there are plenty of options these days...Happy Sailing
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