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Old 07-12-2009, 17:35   #1
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Towing Generators / Update, Anyone?

aloha.. planning ona little trip to the pacific northwest this summer from hawaii and would like to tow a towable generator.. made up several in my previous cruises in the early seventies but woudnt even know where to get the parts today..they are great for keeping the cooler going and of course the lights..has anybody ever made them commercially? does anybody have any good words for them? mahalo derrick
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Old 07-12-2009, 17:39   #2
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MD, Just how did you put them together "way back when"?
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Old 07-12-2009, 17:48   #3
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MD, THE 12 VOLT BIBLE FOR BOATS, by ED SHERMAN, refers to a project in THE VOLT DOCTOR'S HANDBOOK "That describes how to rewire an alternator to make your own wind or water charger. Hope this helps.
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Old 07-12-2009, 17:49   #4
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You can get a commercial one from Ferris, but they are expensive.
Wind Powered Generators

I picked up a motor to use as a generator on Ebay. I had some parts from an older Ferris model, so I plan to use the motor with some of the older mount parts. Haven't had time to finish it or test it.

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Old 07-12-2009, 17:58   #5
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towing generators..

aloha.. back in the day I used a seagull propeller hooked up to a permanent magnet motor salvaged from an old time computer..basically hooked up through a diode straight to the batteries..Threw it out the back and picked it up a few thousand miles later none the worse for wear.. but that was then and this is now...derrick
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Old 07-12-2009, 18:01   #6
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Check EBay for windpower generators. You will see lots of DC motors for sale.

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Old 07-12-2009, 18:16   #7
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A good generator here in Australia is an ex washing machine motor (Fisher and Pakel)(on ebay for $40) which is rewired to produce 12 volts plus at 120 rpm you would need a cable /propellor of some sort.
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Old 07-12-2009, 18:20   #8
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id be intrested at looking at plans for a water towed gen, seems like a good idea
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Old 07-12-2009, 18:33   #9
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Don't tow them anyplace there is seaweed, or where you might fish for marlin. 2 biggest sources of impellor loss.
Same problem as the old "Walker log"
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Old 07-12-2009, 19:03   #10
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Ampair microwind, microhydro, and small wind power systems.

These guys have been around for awhile....this hybrid is interesting...
see their site for local distributors....not cheap...but what is in the marine world
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Old 07-12-2009, 19:50   #11
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I have been thinking of a DIY project along these lines. How about a propeller on a pulley going up to the air where the belt would turn a generator much faster, and then wired into the batteries?
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Old 07-12-2009, 20:39   #12
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The general problem with towed generators is that to get any decent power out of them you lose 2-3 knots of speed.
I would like to develop a system that harnesses the tidal flow at anchor which is why I am buying a 12volt generator that "works" at 120 rpm but the propeller? or whatever (waterwheel) would have to be quite large I would expect.
One thing is the tidal flow is predictable and consistant operating day and night
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Old 07-12-2009, 20:46   #13
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From what I have read it is more like 1/2 to 3/4 knot loss, depending on the boat and the speed it is going.
There is a wind gen made in England that converts to a towable water generator.
Pricey though.
Just go with solar if you can find the space for it. Much better IMO.
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Old 07-12-2009, 20:49   #14
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Use your prop

If you have a gear box that can free wheel then stick a large diameter pulley between the transmision coupler and the prop shaft flange (along with a drive belt and a spare belt). Attach the belt to a small alternator and Bob's your Uncle.
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Old 07-12-2009, 21:19   #15
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This is the English one:

Water and Wind Marine Generators, Welcome to DuoGen

Pricey, but it seems like the best, too. Most of the others have a similar design to the one pictured higher in this thread and have more speed loss because of the extra drag of the line. If you can figure out a way to do something like this DIY and inexpensively, I'm sure lots of folks would be interested....
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