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View Poll Results: Wind generators- who says yeah/nay
Yes, got/want it. Outside of So Cal/Mexico west coast 26 70.27%
Nope, don't want. Outside of So Cal/Mex 4 10.81%
Yes, got/want. So Cal/Mex West Coast 4 10.81%
No thanx. So Cal/Mex West Coast 3 8.11%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 37. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 23-08-2010, 14:42   #16
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I love my AmpAir wind generator and my solar panels and my diesel generator, so I voted with the majority. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Old 23-08-2010, 14:49   #17
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Who says, not for me?
We are in the 'wind lastor never' camp. We had an air-x marine and chucked it after struggling with it for about 5 years.

Most of the time it did not generate any power (because we like protected anchorages) and it sounded like a jet engine when it was generating real amps. We ultimately replaced it with a honda 1000, which has about the same noise level but is pumping out 40 amps whenever we need it wind or no wind, and there are no spinning blades to worry about.
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Old 23-08-2010, 14:52   #18
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As ive said before, its horses for courses and a lot depends on where you are.

If your well up in the northern hemisphere where winters are long and dark and sun dont shine but its always blowing then I think you can guess the rest.

Nearer the equator, a mix of wind and sun would be best but you can buy a 300w turbine for half the cost of the same output of solar.
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Old 23-08-2010, 14:54   #19
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All I can currently say for sure is that when I look across the mooring field from my boat in Salem MA I see a lot of wind generators and not many solar panals. And this includes the boats that know are live aboards. But, of course I don't know how offen they run their engines or have generators.
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Old 23-08-2010, 15:27   #20
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I have both... Love the combo.

The combo tends to look a bit too much like Jed Clampit of the Beverly Hillbillies but I have found around Southern California whenever the sun is hid by clouds it tends to be windy...

The solar array 200W will for sure keep fridge cold, run everything and still keep bank topped off... The wind gen (Air Breeze) kicks in whenever the sun gets covered for the most part. When sailing and using the Auto Nav or not the wind gen really shines.

As far as noise, my wind gen is pretty quiet and unless i am looking to see if it is putting out power I really don't hear it... If there is enough wind to produce power there is enough wind to move the halyards and hide whatever noise is being created.

I for sure notice when a neighbor is using a gas generator and can hear the motor for a fairly sizable distance... I way prefer the wind to firing up my own Honda 2000, of course these are only if the solar hasn't done the trick due to the sun being blocked.
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Old 25-08-2010, 11:25   #21
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Originally Posted by Bash View Post
Blades crashing through the deck? I'm having a hard time seeing how that could be physically possible.

I'll grant you that it's probably not a good idea to insert body parts into a spinning generator, but I'm highly skeptical of what is being reported here about blades flying off, et cetera. Is there a reliable source for these reports?
I have seen the physical evidence of blade fatigue causing the blade to fly off the hub and imbed part of itself in the deck. It appeared that the fiberglass blade fatigued around the bolts (possibly due to vibration, high winds, or assembly errors), separated from the hub, and impacted the deck. The blade may not have passed through the deck but evidence of it was certainly there for those to see and feel.
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Old 25-08-2010, 11:33   #22
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If there is enough wind to produce power there is enough wind to move the halyards and hide whatever noise is being created.
So YOU'RE the guy who leaves all his halyards loose and lets them clang against the mast all night!
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Old 25-08-2010, 11:44   #23
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So YOU'RE the guy who leaves all his halyards loose and lets them clang against the mast all night!
Now that is a good one...

Heck, you caught me!
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Old 25-08-2010, 11:45   #24
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The only problem I have is that wind generators are _very_ dangerous devices. More than one user has reported blades flying off, crashing through the deck, or approaching self destruction in high wind gusts. The do put out gobs of energy when the winds are favorable (and favorable seems to depend on the manufacturer) 24/7 and can be noisy. They need careful mounting so that heads don't come in contact with the blades.
I’ve had my KISS- Gen over 4 years in Greece, where the winds are 20 + knots a whole lot of the time, no problem- I think like anything , you have to check it out for wear and tear once in a while, I take the blade off once a year and look at it closely, mine still looks like new and supplies all of my power needs when the wind is blowing- as much as 25 amps an hour, and it quite!-
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Old 25-08-2010, 11:48   #25
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The only problem I have is that wind generators are _very_ dangerous devices. More than one user has reported blades flying off, crashing through the deck, or approaching self destruction in high wind gusts. The do put out gobs of energy when the winds are favorable (and favorable seems to depend on the manufacturer) 24/7 and can be noisy. They need careful mounting so that heads don't come in contact with the blades.
Really, how many more than one? We have cruised for almost 20 years all over the US, northern and western Caribbean and we have NEVER heard of this happening. We had our Four Winds running in 55 Knots sustained and it scared the crap out of us but made the batteries happy and is still in use today by the current boats owner. We participate in several discussion boards like CF and have never heard a report of this happening. That is why it is such a surprise to hear. Chuck
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Old 25-08-2010, 11:53   #26
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We're still in Mexico.... we have all three (solar, wind, honda). The solar provides the bulk of power (we have 440 watts into a blue sky controller). The wind generator has yet to really prove it's worth... but hey, we're still in the Sea of Cortez. It provides some power, but the winds aren't consistent or strong. So our regime is the same as yours: #1 solar, #2 honda generator (if needed), #3 wind.

Not to say that the wind generator is worthless here, it's just that the winds don't allow it to create enough or reliable power. We'll see what happens after we leave Mexico and head to ??

A side note: we have an AirX and the aftermarket 'silent blades' make a great difference regarding noise.
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Old 25-08-2010, 12:04   #27
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Does anyone in the Puget Sound use wind as their primary?
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Old 01-09-2010, 21:05   #28
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Well it's hard too get exact data with my current electrical system (batt monitor isn't working).

But I recently installed x2 85 watt solar panels to go with my aergoen 4 and existing 120 watts of solar.

Unfortunately just before installing the solar panels i lost one of the wind generator blades (halyard got caught inwind gen).

Spent probably a month or two more cruising with just the panels and I had too charge the batteries with either generator or alternator still. Since getting the wind generator operational again (please note, if using an aerogen 4 etc do not attempt too install blades while wind gen assembly is still mounted too wind gen, you must take wind gen assembly off or you risk losing newly purchased blades off the side of the boat and then losing a fin and getting mask squeeze trying too dive too find them, then spending an additional 3 weeks waiting too get replacement blade for the one you couldn't find... :/)

Anyways, as i was saying, had too charge batts a bit without wind gen, since wind gen has been operational i only had too run engine once too top up batteries and that was while using my 600watt breadmaker. Most days the batteries get topped up around midday now.

I have been moving further north during that time and so combined with seasonal variations it's been better for the solar but i think the wind has added a fair bit.
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Old 01-09-2010, 21:43   #29
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I really don't think it is a matter of one system versus another. It all depends on the situation, and in most instances wind gen and solar complement eachother. At times, though neither is enough on a cloudless and windless day, and one may have to resort to the diesel genset. It simply doesn't hurt to have all three methods--it keeps your options open.
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Old 01-09-2010, 22:15   #30
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I really don't think it is a matter of one system versus another. It all depends on the situation, and in most instances wind gen and solar complement each other. .... It simply doesn't hurt to have all three methods--it keeps your options open.
The question has never been one versus the other, but rather justification of wind at all. And you said it in "it all depends on the situation". In the Sea of Cortez the justification for wind is more difficult IMHO. So my charging priorities remain

1st-solar
2nd-genset
3rd-wind

You touched on the real crux of why I started the thread by saying it doesn't hurt to have all three. The "hurt" would be, initial cost, installing/maintaining and noise. For So Cal/Sea of Cortez, justification of wind gen is tougher. But it looking at the poll results, it seems like you're right about "in most instances".

One day I hope to leave my corner of the world, and I wanna be ready. Until then, I get to run on solar, with a still unused genset as backup.

Thanx all
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