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Old 17-03-2019, 18:07   #1
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Electric Range without a Generator?

Hi

I noticed Delos just did some really awesome upgrades and it got me thinking. They got Lithium batteries, added more solar power, and switched out their range for electric (so they could get rid of the propane all together). I wonder if it can be done without having a generator?

I updated my battery bank recently. I have four Powerstride AGM's (Size 27) with two Lifehouse starting batteries. I also have 200W solar. I know that is not a lot, I barely have any electronics as everything becomes obsolete so quickly. 200W is more than enough to keep me going.

I noticed the Electric Ranges seem to come in 120V. I'd have to get a larger inverter, which would be easy enough. Would I need a separate battery bank to power this, or would I need to invest in a generator? Electrical is not my forte, but this old salt is still learning new tricks!

Thank you for reading.
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Old 17-03-2019, 18:15   #2
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

I'm not sure what you're saying when you say you'll need a "larger inverter" to run a 120V range. Obviously ranges are 120V in the US and continental Europe, 240V in other places, and your inverter is (we hope) the correct voltage for where you are. Your problem is providing enough power. You don't state the capacity of your batteries but 200W of solar just isn't even the start of enough to make a dent in the 2500W+ requirement of an electric range. How else do you get power? Just the alternator? You will need a massive battery bank and plan on only cooking after several days of sunshine or a very long motoring session. Delos has lots of solar, a huge capacity Lithium bank, and a decent generator which is the principal source of their electricity. I seem to remember that they also swapped out their oven for a dishwasher, so they only have an electric hob. Or was that someone else?
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Old 17-03-2019, 18:23   #3
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

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Originally Posted by Tillsbury View Post
I'm not sure what you're saying when you say you'll need a "larger inverter" to run a 120V range. Obviously ranges are 120V in the US and continental Europe, 240V in other places, and your inverter is (we hope) the correct voltage for where you are. Your problem is providing enough power. You don't state the capacity of your batteries but 200W of solar just isn't even the start of enough to make a dent in the 2500W+ requirement of an electric range. How else do you get power? Just the alternator? You will need a massive battery bank and plan on only cooking after several days of sunshine or a very long motoring session. Delos has lots of solar, a huge capacity Lithium bank, and a decent generator which is the principal source of their electricity. I seem to remember that they also swapped out their oven for a dishwasher, so they only have an electric hob. Or was that someone else?

I plan on cruising in the near future, so I would not be relying on shore power to use this sucker. It sounds as if it would need to plug into an inverter if offshore? Or is it wired straight to the battery bank? Only other charging is the alternator. Engine is brand new. Clearly I do not have enough energy to support this but I do not know what I need to do to get closer.
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Old 17-03-2019, 18:55   #4
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

Start with a Lipo bank, then add well more than a Kilowatt of Solar, and as you say a big inverter.

Or none of that and a generator, a built in, a Honda isnít going to do it, two likely could though.

You may have to increase the entire boats capacity, or learn to not run much of anything else when your cooking.
I have a 30 amp Boat, and even without electric cooking I have to power manage things, add cooking and Iíd need to increase capacity to 50 amps.

Now we are talking serious $$$, just to not have propane.
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Old 17-03-2019, 20:00   #5
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonSwanson View Post
I plan on cruising in the near future, so I would not be relying on shore power to use this sucker. It sounds as if it would need to plug into an inverter if offshore? Or is it wired straight to the battery bank? Only other charging is the alternator. Engine is brand new. Clearly I do not have enough energy to support this but I do not know what I need to do to get closer.
Itís your terminology thatís worrying. You donít ďplug intoĒ an inverter. Itís wired into the boat, and it will be the thing powering the cooktop. Thatís what you have when youíre not plugged into shore power.

In order to get closer, you need a big source of power. On a boat, thatís called a generator.
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Old 17-03-2019, 21:35   #6
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

You need to research induction stoves (no way you'll install a traditional electric stove). A single burner might be rated 2000 watts, but it operates on 30-50% duty cycle typically, so cooking for 1/2 hour might only consume 300-500 watts.

The first step is to just go out and buy a table top single unit at Walmart or Home Depot. They cost about $80. Just start using it and see how that impacts your boat's energy management.
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Old 17-03-2019, 21:47   #7
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

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Originally Posted by RonSwanson View Post
I plan on cruising in the near future....Clearly I do not have enough energy to support this but I do not know what I need to do to get closer.
Please consider reading this thread:
https://www.solarpaneltalk.com/forum...-bank-possible

I highly recommend you pick up a copy of Nigel Calder's maintenance and electrical book. Really...it's a must-have on board. $22 and will answer most of your questions for a good long while (and/or help you refine your questions to get better answers).
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Old 17-03-2019, 22:02   #8
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

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You need to research induction stoves (no way you'll install a traditional electric stove). A single burner might be rated 2000 watts, but it operates on 30-50% duty cycle typically, so cooking for 1/2 hour might only consume 300-500 watt hours.

FIFY
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Old 17-03-2019, 23:44   #9
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

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Old 18-03-2019, 00:24   #10
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

I think Sailing Sophisticated Lady just bumped their solar to 2800 watts and as much as I love them, it looks like garbage (no offense guys if you're reading! ) Hanging off the rails, covering the bimini and dodger and foredeck... come on. As a secret survivalist, I'm tellin ya what you want is FLEXIBILITY. What if your solar charger craps the bed out back of beyond? A battery fries? Electrical gremlin that takes days to localize or some wires chewed by a rat? Two weeks of cloudy weather? Storm rips off panel? You'll be happy you got a propane backup.

We run a power hungry boat. Not electric range hungry, but still. To be flexible we retained our Force 10 propane/butane stove and carry fuel for it. But rarely use it. I cook A LOT, and people tell me quite well. A portable two burner induction top is just as good, and can be moved as needed or replaced for 80 bucks in any shop in the world. We have tons of electric appliances (bread machine, electric Instapot pressure cooker, rice machine, deep electric skillet, coffeepot, washing machine, watermaker) and they all run fine off 450 watts solar and 450 watts wind tied to a big but otherwise plain old 24 volt AGM battery bank. The days when they don't, an hour with the generator doesn't cause any worries. If the wind stops, we got sun. If it's cloudy, we got the gennie. If the gennie breaks, we run the engine. Or just hit the propane (which I sometimes do when I need 3 or 4 burners going at once...2 electric on the counter, two on the force 10). Flexibility, 1000%. To get the juice to run a full electric range with solar seems overkill to me, and reduces your options in general. IMHO.
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Old 18-03-2019, 05:29   #11
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonSwanson View Post
I plan on cruising in the near future, so I would not be relying on shore power to use this sucker. It sounds as if it would need to plug into an inverter if offshore? Or is it wired straight to the battery bank? Only other charging is the alternator. Engine is brand new. Clearly I do not have enough energy to support this but I do not know what I need to do to get closer.

Maybe bag the word "range" (which sort of implies a cooktop plus oven combo) and instead think combination convection/microwave oven as one piece and an induction cooktop as the other piece.

Anyway, yes you can conceivably run either of these without a generator or shorepower. At least sometimes. You would need an appropriately sized inverter, a boatload of battery, and some serious recharging capability.

If you do some shopping, you can find specs (volts, watts, amps) for a combo oven thing and for a cooktop thing. That'll help you learn what size inverter you'd need (take into consideration trying use both at the same time). Which in turn will help you understand how much battery capacity you'd need... and again in turn, what you'd need to fully recharge.

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Old 18-03-2019, 09:23   #12
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

Your question is rather like asking how much water you need. The answer to that on is anything from 3 to 40lt/day. Yes you need an inverter that matches the range otherwise it will just trip out but the battery/solar requirement depends on lots of things. How may people on the boat? Where are you cruising? Do you tend to each 'quick cook' food or are you planning a roast followed by cherry pie for a family of 6? Do you frequently use a BBQ when at anchor?. So you need to decide what range, how much use it will get then work out how many amp hours that is and plan a suitable supply/storage system based on that.
Another way of getting rid of the propane is to look at a kerosine stove. Bit of an art to light but once going will beat any propane stove. Maybe combine that with an electric kettle and microwave as backup and quick cook options. Kettle and microwave need high power and good inverters but are only on for minuits so take suprisingly few amp hours
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Old 18-03-2019, 09:40   #13
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

Any electric cooking appliances are High usage.

Usage off-grid requires as much solar as you can summit.

Carry a genny regardless, there will be times you need it.

With LFP and convenient high-amp ICE charging, then it is the solar that becomes unnecessary.
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Old 18-03-2019, 09:58   #14
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

I have an electric range and a 10kw generator. However I prefer to use solar energy and my 2500 watt inverter. I converted the electric only range to an alcohol(low pressure) top and kept the oven which I rarely use. The range was setup originally to use the oven or the stove top but not both at the same time. I watch the current being drawn with everything I use. The stove would only take 10 amps ac but that relates to 100 amps of 12 volt dc. You can suck batteries down pretty fast with that kind of draw.
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Old 18-03-2019, 14:13   #15
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Re: Electric Range without a Generator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tillsbury View Post
Itís your terminology thatís worrying. You donít ďplug intoĒ an inverter. Itís wired into the boat, and it will be the thing powering the cooktop. Thatís what you have when youíre not plugged into shore power.



In order to get closer, you need a big source of power. On a boat, thatís called a generator.


I donít know, you have to plug into the inverter on my boat, itís not set up for hard wiring.

So the question arises, what kind of cooking do you do?

Gourmet or basic cooking?
With gourmet cooking you are going to have long cooking times on various things and electricity wonít work without a big investment.

Basic cooking is a possibility with some investment. For that you need at least 2 ďburnersĒ and some sort of oven.

Currently the most efficient way of cooking with skillets and such is induction.
You can get a 2 pad plug-in induction stovetop for about $200 delivering at most 1800w or it wouldnít be plug-in.
To cook on an induction stove you need induction cookware. Some of what you already have will work, but anything aluminum wonít. An induction cookware set is about $100.
I assume you will want to bake things. Your best bet for that would be a convection microwave. $190, 1000w, 1.2cf. Convection ovens cooks things faster than regular oven and the high airflow over the food changes how things need to be potted for desired surface texture.

OK so we know the watts needed. How about time?

Cooking time for breakfast in the morning will depend on what you have to eat. Letís say
Bacon and eggs of pancakes/French toast and bacon. From frozen I cook 6 pieces of bacon in 10-12min on med or medium low. Letís say thatís 600w for 12min, thatís about 10a-hr out of the battery.
I cook French toast the same time or a bit shorter but at a higher heat. Letís say 700w for 12m which is about 12a-hr.
So breakfast is 22a-hr. I will be getting an induction cooktop for my boat and will update with real numbers eventually if I remember to.

What about dinner? What are you cooking? Letís say steaks, veggies and potatoes.

I like ribeye which is 7 min per side on a grill. Weíre pan frying here so letís say 8min med-high or 800w. Thatís 18a-hr.
Veggies need to be sautťed. 15min on medium so 600w. Thatís 12a-hr.
Mashed potatoes for 2. Potatoes are diced up, put in a microwaveable dish, covered with just enough water then microwaved on high until boiling, 7min, 700w, ó>7a-hr. The pot the goes into a pot cozy and steeps until done. Make your own or buy a Wonderbag for $35. Pasta or rice is the same as potatoes.

Dinner is 37a-hr. I doubt most dinners will use that much energy.

Pasta and red sauce will be on the order of 20a-hr.

Cup of coffee: 2amp-hr.

Letís say on overage you need 50a-hr per day for cooking and your highest electricity demand will be 1800 watts continuous.

That means you need 100a-hr battery and 200w of solar panels budgeted for cooking.


Renogy has a 2000w continuous pure sine wave inverter for $300.
For that you will need a 200-250amp circuit breaker on its own line from the batteries. Figure $80 plus another $160 for cables and lugs.

If you want GoSun has solar cookers in the $325-350 range depending on how big a system you want. These would be good for boiling water or slow cooking meats or veggies.

As long as you arenít going into locations with short days or little sun you can make solar-electric cooking work at a not unreasonable cost, but you wonít be able to do it without changing some of you cooking habits.
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