Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 10-12-2014, 02:24   #1
Moderator
 
carstenb's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2012
Location: Copenhagen
Boat: Jeanneau Sun Fast 40.3
Posts: 4,942
Images: 1
Solar Sails or Bimini?

Does anyone know if these are practical yet? How much do they gnerate? Maybe the bimini is the best place (then there is no need for an Arch).

Apparently they have been tested on the lastest Route de Rhum and survived, but no data has been released yet on their performance

The official site of UK Sailmakers Lofts Worldwide

carsten
__________________

__________________
I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted - Elmore Leonard
carstenb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 06:36   #2
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 4,589
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

I wonder what warranty UK will provide?
__________________

__________________
Paul L
http://svjeorgia.blogspot.com
Paul L is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 07:28   #3
Registered User
 
svHannabel's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Great Lakes
Boat: Catalina 34
Posts: 253
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

I'd still prefer panels on the bimini.

How well will those solar sails work at anchor?
__________________
SailFarLiveFree.com
svHannabel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 08:08   #4
Zai
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Athens
Boat: 2011 Bavaria 36 Cruiser
Posts: 144
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

Not very practical for charging batteries while at anchor.
__________________
Zai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 08:17   #5
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 4,589
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zai View Post
Not very practical for charging batteries while at anchor.
Well if they are part of the sail, that is pretty obvious. Many offshore race boats use expensive hydro generators. Offshore on a cruising boat is generally the time you use the most electric if you run a chartplotter, an autopilot and a reefer.
Alternately the fabric could be used to make the bimini.

The sail shown in the UK ad would not produce any solar if you put in the first reef. Not practical for a cruiser, but maybe OK for a racer.
__________________
Paul L
http://svjeorgia.blogspot.com
Paul L is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 08:33   #6
Registered User
 
Suijin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Annapolis MD; currently in Oriental NC
Boat: Valiant 40
Posts: 2,934
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

Interesting idea that makes a bunch of sense, and is at the cutting edge, but not entirely practical. Still, I'm glad someone is mucking around with the idea, advancing the technology, and pushing it, if somewhat futilely at this stage, into the commercial space.

I think if this progresses to being an easy and relatively cost-effective option when you're having sails made, then it may have some value. Most people I know use solar primarily as a "trickle charger" and rely on their wind generator for the bulk of their renewable charging.
__________________
Suijin is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 08:38   #7
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 4,589
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Suijin View Post
.....Most people I know use solar primarily as a "trickle charger" and rely on their wind generator for the bulk of their renewable charging.
I think you are biased by the tradewinds of the Caribbean. Wind gens don't work so well in places where you don't anchor in the teeth of the Carib tradewinds. Solar starts shine in many of those other places.
__________________
Paul L
http://svjeorgia.blogspot.com
Paul L is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 08:40   #8
Registered User
 
Steady Hand's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Crewing All of 2017 Available Globally
Boat: OPB = Crewing in 2017
Posts: 4,851
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

From the linked site.
"The soft photovoltaic cells can be built into sun shades, biminis and dodgers, but on a boat, the base of the mainsail offers the most unobstructed area."

Imagine a large Bimini and sun shade with this feature, providing shade AND power.

Pretty cool for the anchor outs!
__________________
Ahoy All Sailors! Need experienced crew for a passage or delivery in Atlantic, Pacific, Caribbean, Med, PNW, ICW, coastal or across an ocean anytime in 2017? I am available on 24hr notice. See my CF Profile "About Me" page for details. Happy to lend a hand!
Steady Hand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 08:58   #9
Moderator
 
carstenb's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2012
Location: Copenhagen
Boat: Jeanneau Sun Fast 40.3
Posts: 4,942
Images: 1
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

yeah, the bimini part of it is pretty attractive. If you can get enough juice out of it, you can skip building an arch.

Anybody know anybody with practical experience?
__________________
I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted - Elmore Leonard
carstenb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 09:17   #10
Senior Cruiser
 
roverhi's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Kona, Hawaii, Carlsbad, CA
Boat: 1969 Pearson 35 #108 & 1976 Sabre 28
Posts: 6,006
Send a message via Yahoo to roverhi
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

I'd be concerned with the mechanical issues of the wire connections. A wire on a flogging sail would be damned hard to keep viable. One short race is hardly a representation of life on a cruising boat.
__________________
Peter O.
'Ae'a Pearson 35
roverhi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 12:08   #11
Registered User
 
Steady Hand's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Crewing All of 2017 Available Globally
Boat: OPB = Crewing in 2017
Posts: 4,851
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

Quote:
Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
I'd be concerned with the mechanical issues of the wire connections. A wire on a flogging sail would be damned hard to keep viable. One short race is hardly a representation of life on a cruising boat.
I agree.

The linked site describes how the connections are made on the sail fabric (wiring) and mentions that the Main Sail is THE sail to use, as the jibs (or foresails) will flog too much etc.

It does mention that this type of solar fabric CAN be rolled up without damage.

And it does mention that the type of solar fabric "cells" can generate electricity from ANY kind of light and at angles different from typical flat panel solar panels.

Because of this, I think it would be interesting as larger surfaces could be used IF one used a large bimini or large sun shade that covers the cabin and cockpit of a boat.

Or…if one has a ketch, I can imagine a mizzen with a sun shade or "anchor sail" (while at anchor) being used for solar collection while at anchor…or perhaps a mizzen sail that is solar fabric used while sailing and then while at anchor. hmmm...

Amazing that solar tech is now so common on sailboats. What will the future give us?
__________________
Ahoy All Sailors! Need experienced crew for a passage or delivery in Atlantic, Pacific, Caribbean, Med, PNW, ICW, coastal or across an ocean anytime in 2017? I am available on 24hr notice. See my CF Profile "About Me" page for details. Happy to lend a hand!
Steady Hand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2014, 12:42   #12
Registered User
 
Island Time O25's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 2,019
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

About 10-12 years ago I had a talk with a guy who was an engineer in a European fiber optic factory. He said at the time that a solar cell cloth made from f/o strands (if I remember correctly) was very feasible and even already experimentally done at the time but there were many issues with it to bring it to market. Most obvious of course was the cost and the other was durability in everyday use as it would get used and abused if worn or washed, etc. But he said at the time that technically there was nothing to prevent a sail or a bimini shade to be made from solar cell cloth. Just too damn expensive and a maintenance headache in most applications.
__________________
Island Time O25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2014, 00:08   #13
Moderator
 
carstenb's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2012
Location: Copenhagen
Boat: Jeanneau Sun Fast 40.3
Posts: 4,942
Images: 1
Re: Solar Sails or Bimini?

I've written to them asking for technical details (charge per sq. meter etc). I'll post what I get back.

Of course - next question is cost
__________________

__________________
I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted - Elmore Leonard
carstenb is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
bimini, sail, sails, solar

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For Sale: Sails, Sails and More Sails Slainte40 Classifieds Archive 4 23-04-2011 12:59
For Sale: Sails, Radar, Bimini GalvestonBay Classifieds Archive 3 31-10-2010 11:11
For Sale: Sails, Sails, Sails - Sydney, Australia ribbony Classifieds Archive 6 22-02-2010 20:28
Sails, Sails, Sails... for sale? Jack Long General Sailing Forum 5 14-08-2008 00:41



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 20:51.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.