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Old 06-08-2006, 23:18   #1
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Rutland wind charger

40 years ago when I was crossing oceans in my little 18 foot sloop, the most sophisticated piece of electrical equipment on board was a flashlight. Now.... I need 30amps per day to keep me in the comfort to which I have become accustomed. We don't like to run the engine much and only have a 20w solar panel so we have an obvious shortfall.
I am thinking of installing a Rutland windcharger - I know its output is not all that flash but it is reputed to be very quiet, any my wife is particularly picky about things like that . Does anyone have any experience with this machine?

Thanks and Regards, Chris
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Old 07-08-2006, 03:29   #2
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Rutland 913 is a reasonable middle capability charger, but not the quietest . The quiet ones have large , long blades and thus turn more slowly,They also tend to provide more power, but are les capable in light winds. 913 is very good at producing some output at low wind.

High output are the KISS and Duogen 400
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Old 07-08-2006, 04:33   #3
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Down here at the bottom of the world, wind charger options are Air-X, Rutland, Ampair and Aeorgen. There may be others available but I am not aware of any. My marina neighbours made dark mutterings about anti-social behaviour when I mentioned Air-X, and Ampair is fearfully expensive down here so I really only have two to choose from. I am also handicapped by the fact that not many vessels have wind power, so good info is hard to come by. I like the idea of wind power (mainly because they look sooo yachty) but don't know much about them.
I want to remove myself from the marine for weeks at a time, reduce my engine running to a minimum and somehow get 30 amps/day.
All suggestions welcome.

Joke + Chris
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Old 07-08-2006, 05:03   #4
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Rutland 913 is unlikely to fully meet your cruising needs, especially if you are using tradewind passages, but is fine for weekend use, where the system has the rest of the week to recover the batteries. Personally I prefered to go the solar route, but a cat has the real estate area for solar panels
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Old 07-08-2006, 07:49   #5
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I have one of the new Air-X generators. Mine is very quiet, and has kept my single Group 24 battery charged up while sailing. I've heard that the older model Air-X were fairly noisy, but mine seems barely noticable. The main thing is to make sure it's mounted properly, as that can be a noise source.

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Old 07-08-2006, 16:32   #6
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Air Xs are noisy and they have a sound that I personally find very irritating... Rutlands are quiet as are the small Ampairs. but low output as described above. 30 Ahrs per day is not a lot of load so it might be able to keep up if you have wind all the time. KISS can do that easily. We live aboard and I need about 150 Ahrs/day and the KISS in 18-20 will keep me even all day. It's a good thing.
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Old 07-08-2006, 17:37   #7
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The difficulty with the Air-X seems to be with its identification. As far as I can see, all models look the same superficially - the 303 and the 403 are noisy, the latest model is reputedly not, but how to tell the difference when poking about the marina trying to ascertain relative noise levels?
If I may widen my initial query a little bit; we are miserly power users and I need 30 amps/day. Historically, our consumption has been 24 - 26amps/day but I am allowing a little extra in case we take a fit and actually turn on the stereo one day... Accounting for battery resistance, inefficiencies etc I need to make 1.4 amps for every usuable amp so need to generate 42 amps/day. I agree the Rutland would be struggling, but between it and my 20w panel I would be coming close?
NZ and the Pacific islands are both sunny and breezy, so I guess what I am trying to do is find the right balance between wind and solar to get my 30 or 42 amps without too much recourse to the engine. I guess like everyone my budget is limited so I need to to it once and get it right. This Kiss charger sound pretty interesting..

Joke & Chris

Joke really hates noise and listening to the engine.
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Old 08-08-2006, 03:23   #8
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Joke & Chris:
I suspect that the ... Rutland would be struggling, but between it and your 20w panel you would be coming close ...; particularly if you move the boat (under engine power) at least once a week.
One of the problems with any Wind Generator, is that we cruisers tend to seek out less windy anchorages.
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Old 08-08-2006, 03:49   #9
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Gord May,
You are right. Yesterday I stuck my head out of the hatch and watched the rain clouds scudding across the sky and was pretty convinced that a wind charger was the way to go. Today, with the sunshine streaming down, solar panels are looking a really good option. I think I'm going to bite the bullet and heave up the budget a bit and go for both - a 65w panel to compliment my existing 20w panel and a Rutland wind charger.
There are no easy solutions, are there!!

Joke & Chris
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Old 08-08-2006, 13:16   #10
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Is there that much a differnce in cost between a 65W and and 100W solar panel? I'd tend to go a littel larger. If you find your batteries are topped up and you still have sunlight, you can turn on the stereo!

Cheers,

Keith
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Old 08-08-2006, 20:54   #11
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If you go larger with the solar panel using a good gharge/load controller you can have hot water as well. I have three 65w solar panels and get approx 45 ah per day which is great hor water and stereo too. Rarely need to run the engine for electrical power.
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