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Old 25-08-2006, 11:03   #31
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Hi Swagman:

Going thru the same thing myself. Boat I'm buying has a washer and dryer on board. Haven't used it don't know if it works but the wife likes the idea so it stays. The boat has an old 1200 watt inverter on it. I have a hard time believing it will run the start up power but don't know for sure. The engine has a 70 amp alternator and 6-6v batteries (forget the Ah right now). My feeling is that there is no way that the dryer will work and that running the washer will (if it works at all) drain down the batteries to a point where I'd really have to run the engine a long time just to recharge the batteries (no proof just a gut feeling) So I talked to the yard and it was going to run $1400 CAN to have installed a 160 amp alternaor and then more for batteries and to change the cable size to 2/0 for the increased output of the alternator. So I thought I'd look at a DC generator (Kestrel from Watermaker store). Then I figued I'd need to upgrade the wire again $400 to $500 CAN. Get a stronger inverter and all this other make do kind of stuff.


I talked to a friend who has a Next Generation 3.5Kva that runs off a Kubota 7hp. Well Here is the thougt now -- Install the 40 amp Next Gen. 40 amp AC requires #8 wire (lots cheaper then 2/0) (correct me if I am wrong on size) to 50 amp battery charger. Run #10 wire to washer dryer. Have AC power for tools. Kubota 7hp sips fuel. Kubota engine is bullet proof and easy to get parts for. Last two apply to both Kestrel and Next Gen.

Still confused but have a gut feeling the Next Gen is the way to go. When I get the specs I'll be able to put the numbers together and decide what is the best course.
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Old 25-08-2006, 15:40   #32
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Chbarlie,
That NextGen is a great simple unit. Just make sure you have plenty of sound insulation. Let me quote it too.
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Old 25-08-2006, 17:54   #33
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To the FP folks this will be my last reply to you. You guys must have been trained by the Bush administration since this thread has diverted to who I work for and not about the original posters inquiry. My employer has nothing to do with the information originally requested. I added my two cents based on my experience and exposure to Fisher Panda. I know how to fix them so don't need to go to your training but thanks for the offer. I have been repairing boats and their systems for 35 years and cruising on various size boats for at least that many. And I don't mean trips to the Bahamas occasionally in the winter months. I have seen first hand the frustrations of FP owners trying to get the company to help them outside the US. I have encountered more FP units on boats not working then any other brand. I have personally met and tryed to help folks that just wanted to throw the unit overboard. Not at work but in the real world. At work if you want specifics, the problem is the poor design of the water box which feeds water through the stator. Another common failure is the relays. No amount of customer service will fix a design flaw. That is my opinion as a marine tech for 35 years regardless of who I work for. There are reports of Fisher Panda threatening service companies with removing them as a dealer or service shops if they publicly criticize their product. So if I do not offer my employers name forgive me but in the marine business we have enough headaches. If anyone asks specific questions that I can answer based on my first hand experience I will be glad to answer. But my employment and other personal information is not now nor will it ever be made available on a public forum over the internet. That information has absolutely nothing to do with the original posters inquiry. Enough said. If you are determined to help all of these owners with problems then put up your info for them to contact you and when the issues are resolved let the owners come back here and tell us of their experience. Visit the many other sailing and boating boards and offer them the same assistance. Then let the public come back an tell us how things have changed. Not the folks that have a financial interest in selling a product
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Old 25-08-2006, 19:41   #34
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Dear Chuck,

Since I put up the post about our FP, Jeff in Lauderdale had contacted me just about on a daily basis. If not today then by Monday he should have my control panel in his hands. Hopefully they can figure out what the problem is, if not the board then something that happened while the boat was on the hard. Hopefully Jeff and the guys at FP can figure out my problem, because as I stated I am no mechanic or electrician. We just purchased the boat and everything worked when the boat went on the hard, as with anything you purchase you expect to have problems. Bob Bitchen traveled half way around the world before he could get his fixed and it wasn't even a FP. But as a constuction Co owner, I deal with problems in the same order just different aspects. I look at the bright side and at the end of the day we have the problem solved and get it done weather it be my fault or my subs. So I am willing to give Jeff at FP a chance to stand good behind their product.
We are planning our trip across the Gulf Sept. 11th. Half way through my trip if my FP acts up again or the thing is still not running when I leave, when I arrive at my destination, you will be the first person I call, for we will be neighbors. We can sit at the table of knowledge, have a beer, and discuss my options, then we can both deep six the Panda.

Sincerely, Rodney
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Old 25-08-2006, 20:01   #35
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Rodney, I look forward to it and the chance to sit and tell tall tales. Good luck and if we can help in any way drop us a note here or on the SSCA board and we will get back to you. Hope all goes as planned and the trip is fun and relaxing. Look forward to meeting you. Chuck
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Old 26-08-2006, 07:31   #36
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Chuck,
I think you missed an important point at the Panda schools. The water box you described is designed to be the anode and a service item. The relays are purchased from Bosch, the worlds leading auto electric parts manufacter. If the relay fails don't blame Panda. If the anode isn't cleaned, again don't blame Panda. These units are run in SALT WATER and need service.

Yes I am a dealer for Panda. I have never sold a new unit, only parts and performed service
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Old 26-08-2006, 08:35   #37
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I think that everyone has made valid and interesting points. From MY point of view, it appears that FP is making an outstanding effort to help their customers. I didn't take the offer of a class (to Chuck) as being critical of Chuck, but as an additional measure of Customer Service and education.

Yes - everyone on this board has their own agenda; whether it is business oriented or personal experience. All points of views and opinions (especially when they are backed with specifics) are valid and encouraged to be expressed here.

We do want to avoid attacking the person(s) whose post(s) you might disagree with.

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Old 26-08-2006, 10:17   #38
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If I bought an F-P Genn’y, and if it came with Bosch Relays, and if they were failure-prone ~ who (other than F-P) would I blame?
They selected and installed the relays, according to their criteria, for their assayed purposes and duty.
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Old 26-08-2006, 10:21   #39
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Gord,
I understand your point. The relay F-P uses is a "generic" Bosch relay. I guess Bosch pumps these out by the millions a year. It's pot luck wether it ends up in a F-P generator or a fog light kit. I have no idea what Bosch considers an acceptable failure rate for the relay.
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Old 26-08-2006, 10:51   #40
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A relay can no more be simply ”generic”, than could an engine or a boat.
Small industrial Relays (ie: Lighting Relays) are typically rated for 10 Million operations, at a specified current, voltage and duty cycle (etc.). Bosch manufactures hundreds (?) of different relays, from which an appropriate (to the F-P application) model could be selected.
It's only "Pot Luck" from Bosch's side of the transaction.
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Old 28-08-2006, 07:11   #41
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Chuck,
Before we went to 100% freshwater cooling the electrical plant did require more maintenance. All units sold in the last year and a half are 100% freshwater cooled. We no longer circulate raw water through the electrical end. The old style was still a good product just requiring more maintenance.

This was the reason I offered the service school to you was to get you up to speed on the new product so you can offer yours and our customer’s the best possible service. I do not doubt your abilities as a technician or am I attempting to cancel your company’s dealership. True, we are not interested in having dealers who bad mouth our product on message boards. But nor would any other manufacturer. My goal is to educate you and not take away your discounts.

The offer still stands and I hope you would reconsider or at least give me a call so we can discuss your concerns.

Jeff Till
Fischer Panda Generators

By the way we actually use Hella relays.
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Old 28-08-2006, 10:05   #42
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Last year we bought a Hunter 38 at the Annapolis boat one of the things that were important to us was to be able to run our a/c on the mooring without driving our neighbors crazy. Our dealer installed a Mase 4kw genset with a one cylinder Yanmar motor and enclosure. it fit nicely under the seat in the salon. We love it. All you hear outside is the water coming from the thru hulls, Down below the noise is acceptible. The only downside is that we cannot run the waterheater with the a/c on, not the end of the world. We only have to go to the dock for fuel and water. Best decision we made to have it installed. Good Luck, John
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Old 28-08-2006, 11:53   #43
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Here's another vote for the NextGen. I have a 3.5KW AC unit, two years old, with sound shield, installed professionally by the dealer. Except for one episode last year where I took on a load of bad fuel from a marina which had suffered hurricane damage a couple of years before and hadn't done anything to clean up the tanks, the generator has been flawless...starting, running, and generating. With the bad fuel, it wouldn't put out full power in the then 100 degree F heat!

It puts out enough power to run the larger of my two A/Cs (16,500 BTU) easily and, in a pinch, the smaller one, too (12,000 BTU). It will also run my hot water heater, and several onboard battery chargers, including a Victron 120A model....not all at the same time, mind you. I installed a voltmeter and an ammeter, and made a list of the current draw of all my equipment. This helps me to avoid overloading the generator. Usually, I don't run it at more than 25A AC load or about 2.9 KW. It's very happy at that load.

Re: the relative cost of wire between DC and AC systems, I think that while this was relatively unimportant in the past it is now becoming quite important, since the cost of copper wire has shot sky high recently. Anyone able to buy it at the "old" prices and contemplating rewiring their boat should grab it up now, since it looks like it's only gonna get worse.

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Old 03-09-2006, 20:27   #44
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To Jeff and the Fischer Panda Team, St. Pete Yacht Sales, and the Cruisers Forum Board.

We needed help with our FP genset, had lots of good responses from everyone on board and from FP. Jeff and the gang at FP stepped up to the plate to answer our call for help. After talking to Jeff numerous times by phone, and talking with the gang at St. Pete Yacht Sales, we were able to determine the problem as a faulty board. After removing the board and sending it to FP. FP tested the board and determined it was fried. FP promptly sent out another board and the guys at ST.Pete Yacht Sales installed it and WE HAVE A WORKING GENSET!
We send great thanks to all the staff at Fischer Panda who went out of the way to help out in a time of trouble. We also would like to thank our friends at St. Pete Yacht Sales "Page and Ron," Looking forward to seeing you guys soon. And a big thanks to Cruisers Forum for putting our boating issues out there, you guys are great.
Sincerely,
Rodney

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