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Old 02-05-2010, 04:11   #1
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: London
Boat: ohlson 38
Posts: 1
Increasing Electrical Power by Solar or Wind

My boat an Ohlson 38 uses minimal battery power - cooking is by alcohol, lighting mostly by lamp oil - but we are planning on sailing south to Lisbon (equivalent conditions to Florida) and maybe the Cape Verdes (similar to Caribbean). For this a refrigerator becomes essential. Space is very limited on a boat hull designed in the shape of a 5.5 metre so 90 litres under one of the bunks looks like the best that we can get.

My question is how best to keep the power of the two 105 amp-hr batteries topped up. I have read on this forum that a 75w solar panel might produce 4 amps in these latitudes for 6-8 hours and a Rutland 913 wind generator could produce 90 amp-hours daily in trade winds. I am unsure of how many amps would be needed and for how many hours per day a refrigerator would consume power if properly insulated.

I note than many live-aboards employ both systems but both deck space and pushpit rails are very limited on this long, narrow boat and I am wondering if one could operate with just one type. If so what are the merits of each? Is it for example practicable to mount portable solar panels on a canvas bimini roof to use strictly when at anchor?.
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