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Old 15-08-2018, 21:03   #1
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Water Power 200 Generator

Hi,


I have just been given a Hamilton Ferris Water Power 200 towing generator but it is missing the prop, torque line and regulator. Has anyone had any experience with these? I have contacted Hamilton Ferris for a price but think that by the time it gets to Australia it will be very expensive. I was thinking of using a small outboard prop and buying some torque line. I was hoping an MPPT solar regulator may work but would be interested in any advice on the matter.


Regards


Russ
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Old 15-08-2018, 21:17   #2
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

Russ here is the aquaair units manual it is very similar to your ferris unit
https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...OwgQh_z25Ei88s
Ought to give you some ideas to make the parts you need yourself
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Old 15-08-2018, 23:41   #3
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

Newhaul,


Thanks for that. Any idea of prop size? I am guessing fairly small as if they put out say 10 A at 14V its only 140W or 0.18HP.


Thanks


Russ
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Old 16-08-2018, 00:58   #4
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

FWIW: Some years ago I built a homebrew trolling generator based on a 32 V permanent magnet tape drive motor. I used a 6 hp Johnson prop (with buggered blades, free from an outboard shop) on a ~1 m shaft. Used common 1/2 inch double braid dacron, no regulator at all, and a blocking diode. Worked well, put out ~10 amps at around 6 knots.

There was no need for a regulator, for simple monitoring of system voltage gave warning the few times we actually got near full charge... it's pretty hard to damage anything with 10 amps on a boat at sea with all the ongoing loads.

My advice: don't over think this. Try it in simple format and see if it doesn't work just fine!

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Old 16-08-2018, 02:47   #5
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

According to ‘Practical Sailor’, it uses a Lexan 8" prop with 5" pitch:
“... The spinner is a 3-foot long stainless rod with a propeller on one end and a threaded receptacle on the other end. The standard prop for boatspeeds up to around 6.5 knots is a Lexan 8" prop with 5" pitch. Faster boats may need to change to a prop with greater pitch to slow down the spinner through the water..."
https://www.practical-sailor.com/iss...or_4784-1.html

I would tend to agree, with Jim, that a regulator may not be required, especially if you have a larger battery bank. However H-F says:
“... All Powermax externally controlled alternators require a regulator. We offer a Powermax Basic Regulator that if purchased at the time of your Powermax Alternator order is available at a special price. We also offer a Smart Regulator for those desiring the maximum power output from the Powermax Alternator. The exception to the rule is this - If you are purchasing our Powermax LT alternator, these Powermaxes are internally regulated and do not require an external regulator to operate as their regulator is built in...
... The Powermax Basic Regulator works well for those who spend 15-30 minutes motoring out of the harbor at the beginning of the weekend, and 15-30 minutes when they return. Usually in this scenario, the daily usage is fairly low and the 30-60 minutes of Powermax charge time is enough to keep the batteries charged. For those who do a lot of long term motoring or need lots of charging power, a smart regulator is preferred. This regulator goes through a 3 step program of charging, to get the batteries properly charged, but not overcharged. Based on battery bank feedback, the regulator decides when the battery is full and drops into a float mode, which is the stage that reduces the charging voltage to a maintenance level...”
FAQs ➥ FAQs

PartsWater Power 200 Options & Cruising Spares
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Old 16-08-2018, 06:41   #6
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Reef Cafe View Post
Newhaul,


Thanks for that. Any idea of prop size? I am guessing fairly small as if they put out say 10 A at 14V its only 140W or 0.18HP.


Thanks


Russ
Russ something like this should work just great.
https://www.wholesalemarine.com/sola...RoCGucQAvD_BwE
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Old 16-08-2018, 10:19   #7
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

I have been using a towing generator for many year's, it's one item i keep,when i move on to another boat,you need to make a BRAKE stop out of a plastic bucket to stop the prop from spinning, when retrieving while under way, slit the side of the bucket from top to bottom, make a hole large enough to slide over the line, install lines ,so the slit can be held closed and attach a lead weight to the bucket, slide the bucket into the water, it will slide down over the prop and stop it spinning, and i do not use a regulator, i burn up every amp produced while underway, with radar, auto pilot running,ect.
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Old 16-08-2018, 13:23   #8
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

I've had the generator on my boat for several years. I'm quite happy with it. It produces 6 amps at 14 volts (84 watts) at 6 knots. I've never seen over 9 amps at 9 knots (126 watts). The output is non-linear: you'll see almost no power below 4 knots.

The generator didn't come with a regulator. Only a series diode (that was underrated) and a series fuse (the diode would burn out first). It also came with a 25 amp ammeter - which is way over-scaled (like putting a speedometer that tops out at 180 MPH on a tractor).

I designed my own controller. I'm attaching a hand-drawn schematic (with apologies for my poor artistic talents). It includes a bill of materials. At the heart of the controller is a Flexcharge regulator. To prevent the prop (impeller) from surfacing, hockling the line, and sapping power with the hocle spinning in the water, you need to switch in a load once the regulator reaches its set voltage (I use 14.0 volts). The brushes make some RF noise in the HF band, but if you don't have an HF SSB transceiver, you can omit the toroid (RFC1) in the design. The really large capacitor, C1, smooths out load transitions. It can be omitted, but with a greater risk of line hockling. The steering diodes D4 and D5 accommodate my twin bus design. If you have only one battery, you'll need only one steering diode. You can't omit this: your battery will spin the generator without it.

An MPPT controller isn't appropriate for a DC generator. MPPT controllers are intended for solar panels that have a "sweet spot" voltage for maximum power. DC generators have no such maximum power voltage. You'll just add complexity using an MPPT, and it may not be designed to handle the inductance of a DC generator (you might fry it from inductive transients created by the brushes).


I've gotten good use out of the generator. Detractors say the drag slows the vessel - but once hull speed is achieved with a displacement hull, the small amount of added drag is irrelevant.


Be sure to mount the generator so it can yaw through its full range when underway, and that it's in a vertically-neutral position on the stern when in use.
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File Type: pdf water-generator2.pdf (601.0 KB, 32 views)
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Old 16-08-2018, 15:11   #9
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Re: Water Power 200 Generator

Many thanks for all your responses. I’ll find an old prop and give it a go.

Regard

Russ
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