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Old 16-05-2015, 10:04   #61
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

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Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
I think this is a bit unfair and not really representative of the sentiments of the posters on this issue.
You say that, and yet how many posts have I read from the old salts saying exactly that. I was told "get off your couch and go do it" from someone who had no clue what I was or was not doing or capable of doing. And I have read that countless times from folks in these forums telling people to "stop dreaming and go do it". Sometimes "dreaming" is all that is within reach, as you have just expressed for your own individual situation.

In this case, the same argument is being expressed in a context where you have made a realistic decision and so you express contempt for the argument.

Think about that the next time you see an old salt being "old salty" with someone. It is a bit unfair, we all operate in our own reality. If we can't make it work today, we can still dream and in fact use that dream to stay focused on the eventuality. And yet enjoy what we do have, and can do, right here, right now.
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Old 16-05-2015, 10:34   #62
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

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Originally Posted by jwcolby54 View Post
You say that, and yet how many posts have I read from the old salts saying exactly that. I was told "get off your couch and go do it" from someone who had no clue what I was or was not doing or capable of doing. And I have read that countless times from folks in these forums telling people to "stop dreaming and go do it". Sometimes "dreaming" is all that is within reach, as you have just expressed for your own individual situation.

In this case, the same argument is being expressed in a context where you have made a realistic decision and so you express contempt for the argument.

Think about that the next time you see an old salt being "old salty" with someone. It is a bit unfair, we all operate in our own reality. If we can't make it work today, we can still dream and in fact use that dream to stay focused on the eventuality. And yet enjoy what we do have, and can do, right here, right now.
I'm sorry but show me anything I have said that is unfair or shows contempt in any way. Perhaps in some of the posts on the numerous threads on electric you can find an occasional contemptuous remark from someone (it is the internet after all and there's always a few) but the overwhelming sentiment I see is just factually refuting the claims that electric is the answer and is ready to go for anyone or everyone.

I'm an engineer and I deal in facts. My training is electrical engineering and if for no other reason I am highly interested in going electric. So show me the facts on how I can do that with just a semi reasonable cost (no I don't mean free, I don't even mean cheaper, just in the ball park) and I will retract everything I have written on the subject.

Not really sure what you are trying to say about old salts and what it has to do with this discussion. Like I said, it's the internet and you'll always get a few that are less than polite but I think that has more to do with the person than whether they are an old salt or whatever.
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Old 16-05-2015, 11:02   #63
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

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Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
I'm sorry but show me anything I have said that is unfair or shows contempt in any way.
Apologies, like any word contempt has several meanings and can be interpreted in several ways. Too strong a word for sure.

Replace "express contempt for" with "dismiss".

The argument itself was

"if you REALLY want something, you pay extra for it and make compromises for it vs find reasons not to".

This is absolutely a true statement.

So what can be said in context is "that the cost is so high (in my opinion, for my situation) that I don't want it badly enough to pay the price. And yet I do want it.

So that is conflict, internal conflict.

I want it! (true)
But it costs too much right now! (true)
But I want it! (true)

you get the picture.

So now someone comes along and says "I did it, and if you REALLY wanted it you would do it too." As unfair as that sounds, it is still true.

I have no idea how much he paid for it. Maybe he paid waaaaay more than it is worth to me. He has no idea how much I can afford.

But in the end, if I REALLY want something badly enough I will do whatever is required to get it. If I don't go get it then I don't want it badly enough to do whatever is required to get it.

Think about "I don't want it badly enough to do whatever is required to get it" as a good thing, not a bad thing. It prevents me from killing my rich uncle to get the money to do this thing. I am in control, I can't afford it and I don't "do whatever is required" for ME to get it. People ruin themselves and even those around them trying to get stuff they can't afford.

And it irritates me that someone says I don't want it badly enough. Well... I don't and I am quite happy with that decision.

And finally, it is easy to say "you'd go get it instead of making excuses" when I can afford something. Which was my point about "old salts" and "get up off the couch". I read that line almost daily in this forum, always from someone who could afford to do whatever that was.
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Old 16-05-2015, 11:37   #64
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

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Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
I have read a dozen threads about electric propulsion for boats and I don't recall seeing one single person saying he/she didn't want EP. In fact most seemed really interested in EP for boats.... but only when it becomes practical.

Current state of technology it is not economically viable if you want a boat with a cruising range under power of 100-200-300 miles. It is technically possible but the cost will be about triple the cost of a standard diesel engine system and would still have a diesel engine to power the generator needed to give you the range.

I for one will jump at the chance when it hits the market.
My feelings exactly. I just changed out my 32 year old old Volvo. I was seriously wanting to go electric for many reasons, but when I fully costed it out, I was looking at slightly over double for a 12 hour range.
Another 5 years and the economics may just add up.
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Old 16-05-2015, 12:40   #65
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

Apologies on my part if I was reading a meaning in your comments that was unintended.

To a point I do agree with your assertions that not going electric is a matter of choice and an unwillingness to pay the price and make the compromises necessary. However for a cruiser that needs range under power going electric is also illogical and actually a step backwards as it gives up the main benefit of going electric IE eliminating the engine.

In the current state of the technology the only way I know to get cruising range is to add a generator to power the electric motor. So you replace a diesel engine and transmission with an electric motor and a diesel engine and a generator head. So to keep the range you would give up the simplicity of pure electric, and assuming one agrees with this point, the better reliability of electric, certainly give the reduced maintenance of electric.

To give up range under power isn't just a compromise or an excuse not to go electric, for many it would mean a completely different cruising style, as different a switching from sail to power. For too many cruisers to go electric would mean giving up where and how they cruise, where they can dock or moor their boat and more. Certainly the ICW would be out. Crossing the Gulf Stream to the Bahamas on a dead calm day would be out. Doing the canals of Europe not happening. Inside passage to Alaska would be problematic.

I think electric is great. For my boat it would simplify the drive train so much. I could get rid of the V-drive and actually see my prop shaft without pulling the engine. Shaft alignment would be a breeze. Docking would be a dead silent operation. Now if someone would just build a 4D size battery with a few thousand amp hour capacity.




Quote:
Originally Posted by jwcolby54 View Post
Apologies, like any word contempt has several meanings and can be interpreted in several ways. Too strong a word for sure.

Replace "express contempt for" with "dismiss".

The argument itself was

"if you REALLY want something, you pay extra for it and make compromises for it vs find reasons not to".

This is absolutely a true statement.

So what can be said in context is "that the cost is so high (in my opinion, for my situation) that I don't want it badly enough to pay the price. And yet I do want it.

So that is conflict, internal conflict.

I want it! (true)
But it costs too much right now! (true)
But I want it! (true)

you get the picture.

So now someone comes along and says "I did it, and if you REALLY wanted it you would do it too." As unfair as that sounds, it is still true.

I have no idea how much he paid for it. Maybe he paid waaaaay more than it is worth to me. He has no idea how much I can afford.

But in the end, if I REALLY want something badly enough I will do whatever is required to get it. If I don't go get it then I don't want it badly enough to do whatever is required to get it.

Think about "I don't want it badly enough to do whatever is required to get it" as a good thing, not a bad thing. It prevents me from killing my rich uncle to get the money to do this thing. I am in control, I can't afford it and I don't "do whatever is required" for ME to get it. People ruin themselves and even those around them trying to get stuff they can't afford.

And it irritates me that someone says I don't want it badly enough. Well... I don't and I am quite happy with that decision.

And finally, it is easy to say "you'd go get it instead of making excuses" when I can afford something. Which was my point about "old salts" and "get up off the couch". I read that line almost daily in this forum, always from someone who could afford to do whatever that was.
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Old 16-05-2015, 20:09   #66
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
I have read a dozen threads about electric propulsion for boats and I don't recall seeing one single person saying he/she didn't want EP. In fact most seemed really interested in EP for boats.... but only when it becomes practical.

Current state of technology it is not economically viable if you want a boat with a cruising range under power of 100-200-300 miles. It is technically possible but the cost will be about triple the cost of a standard diesel engine system and would still have a diesel engine to power the generator needed to give you the range.

I for one will jump at the chance when it hits the market.
Inadequate cruising range is definitely a key issue with EP at present. For cruising in many areas of the Pacific and Asia in the lower latitudes near the equator lack of winds and currents are real issues.
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Old 17-05-2015, 01:29   #67
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

I want to thank everyone for your input, as always, a wide range of thoughts and experiences on the topic.

Well spotted, and I stand corrected - Diesel Engine vs Electric Motor. <blushes>

I am quickly learning that, as with flying a plane, sailing a boat is all about balance.

I read Bumfuzzle recently, where a couple essentially knew nothing about sailing and powered their Cat around the world. I then dug into the Pardey's books, who sail without a motor. I don't think you could get sailing styles any more different from each other, or extreme.

So, going with a diesel engine or electric motor seems to be a case of balance. How far are you likely to sail, and need to use your man made propulsion system? How much are you able to use the wind? Store more food, and you can wait out bad weather, being becalmed, recharging times, etc. Or, don't pack so much food and rely on a diesel.

Clearly, different solutions work for different people, we all find a balance that works for us.

I think it'll be nice when the technology behind batteries and electric motors improve. Solar panels have improved a lot, and will continue to get better.

Thanks again everyone.
MG
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Old 17-05-2015, 05:36   #68
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

This is the wrong forum for support of electric drive.

Cruisers, by definition, require long range...the longer the better...diesel cans tied to the rails for those long crossings.

Electric in its current form is short range.

However, there are a great many, the majority perhaps, of boats that never go more than a few miles from their dock. All those club racers, lake sailors, day sailors, and weekend warriors. Those are the boats that would definitely benefit from electric right now. Sadly, this is not their forum.

So, in a feeble attempt to soften this debate here, let me say: Cruisers benefit from the range of diesel. Short range boats (which are plenty) would benefit from electric.

And finally, I'd like to suggest the boat manufacturers accept electric, and start making wide/deep/dry bilges that would hold a ton of lead acid (flooded) batteries (cheap). If I had space for 10 batteries to replace part of my ballast (keel), I'd go electric right now.
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Old 17-05-2015, 09:59   #69
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

Girl--you left out the problems an electric boat owner faces when seeking service professionals in remote parts of the world. If you only need a toy boat for harbor cruising, that's one thing. But if you wish to travel to distant anchorages, it would be easier to find help to repair your diesel inboard than some custom made electrical contrivance the locals have never even seen before.
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Old 17-05-2015, 11:17   #70
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

More FUD.
You will need help to fix the diesel, that is true.

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Girl--you left out the problems an electric boat owner faces when seeking service professionals in remote parts of the world. If you only need a toy boat for harbor cruising, that's one thing. But if you wish to travel to distant anchorages, it would be easier to find help to repair your diesel inboard than some custom made electrical contrivance the locals have never even seen before.
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Old 17-05-2015, 11:37   #71
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

Terra-
"Girl--you left out the problems an electric boat owner faces when seeking service professionals in remote parts of the world."
I think you would find "electric fan and motor" shops exist in every odd corner of the world, although they have become scarce in the "throw it away, buy a new one" urban US for 25 years now. Alternator and starter repair shops, or factory maintenance personnel, all have the skills to test and repair an electric motor, and then what's left is mainly belts and gears. World-wide skills on the electro-mechanical level.
The complication would come with electronic components, which some systems need and others don't. But finding a competent computer tech, even in downtown San Francisco or Manhattan, is no more likely than finding one in the remotest parts of some Pacific atoll. Where you'll still have to reach FedEx to get a diesel high pressure pump sent out for a rebuild, as well.
Same same.
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Old 17-05-2015, 12:22   #72
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

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...I think you would find "electric fan and motor" shops exist in every odd corner of the world...
Good luck getting them to fix your electric boat.
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Old 17-05-2015, 15:22   #73
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Re: Diesel vs Electric Engine

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Originally Posted by hamburking View Post
This is the wrong forum for support of electric drive.

Cruisers, by definition, require long range...the longer the better...diesel cans tied to the rails for those long crossings.

Electric in its current form is short range.

However, there are a great many, the majority perhaps, of boats that never go more than a few miles from their dock. All those club racers, lake sailors, day sailors, and weekend warriors. Those are the boats that would definitely benefit from electric right now. Sadly, this is not their forum.

So, in a feeble attempt to soften this debate here, let me say: Cruisers benefit from the range of diesel. Short range boats (which are plenty) would benefit from electric.

And finally, I'd like to suggest the boat manufacturers accept electric, and start making wide/deep/dry bilges that would hold a ton of lead acid (flooded) batteries (cheap). If I had space for 10 batteries to replace part of my ballast (keel), I'd go electric right now.
You outline the reason electric power provides insufficient range for typical cruiser usage.

The problem is the weekend racers who just use the motor to get in and out of the harbor, use hardly any fuel, so the benefits are negligible.

Given the current limitations and costs, there is no market where current electric drivetrains are better than diesel drivetrains.
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