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Old 17-05-2006, 08:35   #31
sitting on the dock of the bay

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seems like a high output alternator on yer diesel with plenty of golf cart batteries feeding into an inverter would be a quieter solution

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Old 17-05-2006, 08:36   #32
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Originally Posted by roverhi
I've found that people who have nuisances don't consider it their problem to correct. It's the me generation, if ME needs it, then everyone else can go F*** off. I guess a sign of the times.
Sorry, but I have to make the observation that this sentiment is also a "ME" thing. Does not take into account the need of your neighbor to be able to recharge his batteries by running that genset. It focuses only upon your need to maintain quiet at all times. So I assume that you only run your electric sander while offshore?

IMHO if I were at the anchorage, I would greatly appreciate a visit from Sean. "Hi neighbor... I want to minimize the disruption to everyone here, so I plan to limit my genset operation to the hours of XX - XX." It would show me that you are:
- considerate
- willing to negotiate / accommodate the needs of others (maybe my wife is ill and usually sleeps during your planned genset hours?)
- not oblivious to the noise (like so many neighbors with barking dogs)
- kind enough to ask
I would at least know in advance what your circumstances are and could plan to be below-decks or ashore during that time if the noise truly bothered me.

I'm sure you'll run into the occasional skipper who cannot be mollified - you can usually spot them as the ones whose boat has just drug through the anchorage. But at least you will have been courteous. That speaks volumes to me and is likely the key to success in any social anchorage.

Good luck with it! May your season put enough in the kitty for that Fischer-Panda water-cooled unit...

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Old 17-05-2006, 09:31   #33
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As a business owner you should poll your clients to find what is less intrusive to them. My guess is that whatever time period works for them will be minimally intrusive to the "greater" community. First and formost take care of your business needs. If you aint in business, you aint sailing.

Where ever you find people you will find noise, crying babes (stop beating the wife), noisy genset (stifle it), partying (drunken sailers, duh). If you need absolute peace and quiet, get off by yourself.

You appear to me to be reasonable in doing everything practical within your limits to be a good neighbor. Could you come down and help me harass the SOB next door.

Lastly, if I don't hear it down here in Panama City, FL it aint bothering me.
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Old 17-05-2006, 09:54   #34

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Thanks for the additional posts and support folks. I think MarkPJ makes a good point. That's really the kind of guy I am when I'm not deep in any flame wars... ha ha ha. That's actually why I asked the question... so I could get a basic idea of when I could run so as not to offend people. Further, I would go around a bit if it was a small anchorage and ask people if they wouldn't mind.

Interestingly, I wasn't even thinking of the point MarkPJ makes that demanding absolute silences 24/7 is a "me me me" thing. Very clever.

But as Wukong says... I'm working out here, not on vacation, so the priority has to be with business. Sorry... but that's how I eat. It's got to come first. Just like the fishing boat, the lobster boat, or the mega yacht. I have to make electricity, so I have to run it. This thread was asking *when* I should run it, not "how can I avoid running it?" I'll chalk that up to thread drift?

Anyway, I am really off the site at least for a while. I thank you all for your help, great discussions, and kind words.

Parting comment for Jeff: "Dooooode, where's my car?"
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Old 17-05-2006, 10:00   #35
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Hopefully, parked near mine. Find one, find both. Don't stay away too long. We'll all miss your smiling face. If you ever get up this way I owe you a beer. No flame war intended.

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Old 17-05-2006, 11:16   #36

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Besides the muffler, placing a box around the damn thing would probably be more effective. Not just a box, but a box made of highsensity material like two layers of MDF, with the lead/vinyl soundproofing material lining it inside. Of course that's not so simple either, the genset should be mounted on rubber isolation feet (i.e. engine mounts) and the box should similarly be isolated from the genset, so mounting both on a common base/frame is probably the easiest way, with the air intake located facing down, so any moise reflects back up into the air from your deck, instead of beaming out.

Ah, but the engine will overheat, yes. So you'll probably need to belt up a fan blade to get forced air induction into that intake, sucking the air in at the front of the engine and exhausting it at the rear, or running side to side. Probably bulky (soundproofing is) and time consuming, but I'd guess maybe $300 worth of materials and you could substantially muzzle that beast. And then, of course, add the muffler--probably with soundproofing around it as well.

While I hate loud engine noises (and deny all knowledge of caltrops in lawn mower paths) I give you credit for speaking up and asking how you can muffle the damned thing. I know that if I were booking your boat, the last thing I would want to hear is an industrial motor on the stern!
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Old 17-05-2006, 12:36   #37
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Sean I think it depends on the anchorage.

In a busy anchorage say Newport RI your two hour window before dinner is fine. In a very quiet anchorage it might be perceived as a "tad" annoying especially if it's running two hours in the early evening. The middle of the afternoon is probably the safest rather than 4-6 which is getting into folks sundowner time I would think 2-4 would be better if you have to do it.

As far as charging via other means you should look at that or figure out how to quiet things down. We have a 4.2 Kw genset on board and except for the sound of the exhaust splashing you can barely hear it if at all off the boat. Yes cost some $ but better for everyone including us on board.

Also with a bigger battery bank you do not have to charge as frequently as the number of amp hours available is much higher. Then you can put a very large alternator on your main engine so on hour a day puts back most of what you use. For example a 1000 Ahr battery bank. 50% discharge = 500 Ahrs. 85% is 850 Ahrs. Therefore your working range for most of the time is 350 Ahrs. With a 270 amp alternator you can put this back in an hour and a half or so. Then once a week or so make sure you fully charge the batteries back to 100% using the genset or a long motor. With your current set-up your working range is 147 Ahrs which is very limiting on a charter boat. The larger bank should get you through a full 24hrs at a minimum without needing to run anything.

Some food for thought....
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Old 17-05-2006, 13:21   #38
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Folks, there is no one easy answer here. Power comes at a cost. There is nothing free as of yet. Sean is right. It costs a lot for Solar. If you are going to do it, you have to do it right, or you are wasting your time and money.
As I have said several times in the past, when it comes to electrical storage, what you take out must be put back in, plus some. If you take out 100Ahrs say, you need to be able to put that plus losses back in within a set time. Doing this with Solar means a very very large array. You only get a small time window of good charge light that you can peak generate, plus there is the odd cloudy day. So array size has to be designed around that. They are huge and expensive to do so. So the most reliable source of generation is the genset. Maybe over time the fuel will be more expensive than the overall cost of other generation, but fuel on a weekly expense basis is much cheaper than the initial cost of the other alternatives.

From what I have heard, wind generation gets as much negative response from others at anchorage as Gensets do.

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Old 17-05-2006, 15:55   #39
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While we were in our dinghy heading to eat, I noticed a very nice box built on the aft section of a boat in the marina. I asked the guy in the slip next to him if he knew what was in the box....YEP...a genset. The box had a solid top and the sides were slats. This allows for air flow, is very attactive and should help to dissipate the noise.

Also, we have two 120 watt solar panels and a MPPT controller. Total cost was around $1250. A Honda 2000 is $950 (just bought one) and a nice teak box might cost $300 if you do the work yourself or use some of the synthetic board and paint it. That's $2500 max. How much can you get for the old genset?

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Old 17-05-2006, 15:57   #40
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Sean more thing. If you leave and decide to come back, PLEASE use another picture. The coat and tie just doesn't go with living aboard <grin>.

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Old 17-05-2006, 16:31   #41
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Sean, why get so angry just because you got answers that you didn't like? You asked an open question and you got a number of answers. Mostly people said that they did not appreciate noisy generators in a quiet anchorage. Sounds right to me. But you also got a number of suggestions of how to quiet the beast down. Did none of those suggestions meet with your approval?

You could always run the generator while underway.

Anyway, good luck.

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Old 17-05-2006, 18:40   #42
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OK Sean, here is the simple answer. 1)sell drinks for 20 bucks a pop, and tell the neighbors that all procedes go to solar panels.
2) rig a retractible extension cord, and be willing to charge batteries for others. You will be the most popular guy in the anchorage
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Old 17-05-2006, 18:46   #43
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Damn Kai!!

That's ingenius!!

I never thought of that. WOW!!!:cubalibre

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Old 17-05-2006, 20:12   #44

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"1)sell drinks for 20 bucks a pop, and "
Nah, you've got it backwards. Just tell the neighbors that whenever they can hear the genset, DRINKS ARE ON YOU! Like Pavlov's dogs, they'll soon learn to come running when they hear the genset.<G>
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Old 17-05-2006, 20:19   #45
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Ah, bribery. Never fails.

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