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Old 19-10-2011, 09:44   #16
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Re: Wind vs Solar

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Thanks one and all for your replies. I am going to the med for a start then who knows after. I have all led lights yes and I have a well insulated fridge. I have a 35ft mono hull and no I don't like silence. Got something like 3000 tunes on my I phone which I like to listen to.
I am erring towards solar to start with and see how it goes.
Yeah, I would start with solar but, agree with the others it's best to have both. I started with the wind generator first and added solar the following year. I have electric propulsion on my boat. I did not put the wind generator back on board this season after a touch up repainting (lazy) and found I went through more fuel than last year to keep the 48 volt battery bank topped up with the Honda 2000 gas generator. Plus I was not as "happy at the helm" as I was last year:
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: HAPPY AT THE HELM!
Do both if you can.
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Old 19-10-2011, 09:45   #17
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Re: Wind vs Solar

Just make sure to give high priority to the solar panels access to SUN with no shadows from other junk above them.
I'm continually amazed at this error on boats.
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Old 19-10-2011, 09:55   #18
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Re: Wind vs Solar

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Just make sure to give high priority to the solar panels access to SUN with no shadows from other junk above them.
I'm continually amazed at this error on boats.
This is important. Also you can get 2x the amps from the same panel by pointing it at the sun.

We are fans of solar and have not had much luck with wind. We had a wind gen that we took off several years ago - just not generating anywhere enough power.

Practical Sailor Magazine (July 2007 issue) did a four-day test of 5 different wind generators. The smaller units (29"-36" diameter blades) produced an average of 40 amp-hours/day and the bigger units (46"-47" dimeter. blades) produced an average of 64 amp-hours/day. This test included two windy days out of four and the wind generators were sited in a clear wind flow (on a hill) and not a protected anchorage, so these numbers are higher (looking at the wind data I would estimate 2x) than would be seen in the average cruising anchorage.
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Old 19-10-2011, 10:03   #19
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Re: Wind vs Solar

No one answer. Ask yourself where you would locate the panels. If you dont have a good spot where they will work well and be out of the way, then maybe wind is best. Larger Wind Gens can be noisy, but put out a lot compared with solar. Some days there is no wind though. In the tropics, even on a hot muggy day I think you will get some output off the Solar.
Maybe a small quiet wind gen and just a not huge solar panel or two placed somewhere out of the way would be a good solution...?
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Old 19-10-2011, 10:16   #20
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Re: Wind vs Solar

Wind technology has pretty much peak from a technological point of view in comparison to solar which is just starting to really take off (the new manufacturing technology in solar will also bring down the prices).
My plan is to put a wind generator on a mast on one corner of the stern with a radar mast on the other useing the boom gallows for support, until I get solar this will be a cover over my quarter deck, eventually I will put 2 or 3 adjustable angle panels there.
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Old 19-10-2011, 10:33   #21
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To be honest I use both but only have a Rutland 913 which produces little however I do try to anchor in sheltered bats where there is not much wind and then when I go sailing I have become a gentleman and really like downwind sailing and at this point my wind generator goes round and round like a wild banshee. Sure at points it has become useful especially when I was caught in 50 knot winds and again it came into use making me feel like we were going to take off.

in my view for what it's worth go solar then wind but make sure you can turn the blades off easily .
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Old 30-10-2011, 14:01   #22
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Re: Wind vs Solar

Fitted a Wind 303 on the boat for the pacific crossing in 1995, friends used the Rutland on their boat. The 303 averaged 1.5 amps/hr (measured) while sailing due to low apparent wind across its blades. (wind speed minus boat speed) When at anchor in sheltered bays and on nice sunny calm days which there are a lot of, 0amps. When I met up with the friends in Tonga they had dismantled their Rutland and put it in the bilge. The 303 was the only piece of equipment on the boat that failed in 2 and a half years. When I was entering Sydney harbour in Aus the boat was hit by a "southerly buster". The boat was knocked down and the wind gen blades bent backwords and hit the mounting post, they exploded sending shrapnel over the cockpit. I have a pic some were that I will post later.
The next Mexico trip in 2001 was with solar panels and was I impressed .... solar panels work. I have 5 Kyocera 135 watt panels on this boat.
Please...... do not let wind gens info fool you,
Thats my opinion and as sugar coated as I can get, I can send you private message and really tell you what I think about wind gens but then there would be a lot of %^$#@'s
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Old 30-10-2011, 17:25   #23
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Re: Wind vs Solar

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Originally Posted by Ctrich View Post
Fitted a Wind 303 on the boat for the pacific crossing in 1995, friends used the Rutland on their boat. The 303 averaged 1.5 amps/hr (measured) while sailing due to low apparent wind across its blades. (wind speed minus boat speed) When at anchor in sheltered bays and on nice sunny calm days which there are a lot of, 0amps. When I met up with the friends in Tonga they had dismantled their Rutland and put it in the bilge. The 303 was the only piece of equipment on the boat that failed in 2 and a half years. When I was entering Sydney harbour in Aus the boat was hit by a "southerly buster". The boat was knocked down and the wind gen blades bent backwords and hit the mounting post, they exploded sending shrapnel over the cockpit. I have a pic some were that I will post later.
The next Mexico trip in 2001 was with solar panels and was I impressed .... solar panels work. I have 5 Kyocera 135 watt panels on this boat.

Please...... do not let wind gens info fool you,
Thats my opinion and as sugar coated as I can get, I can send you private message and really tell you what I think about wind gens but then there would be a lot of %^$#@'s
That seals it for me regarding Wind gen's particularly sailing in the tropics.
Thanks for the post.

Rutlands seem good and was what jessica Watson used in the Sothern Ocean which is not where i will be.
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Old 30-10-2011, 17:46   #24
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Re: Wind vs Solar

The new generation of solar panels are much better and less effected by shading. I use the Air Breeze wind gen and 2 x 130kw solar and could not be happier. With 400Amps of house bank with the above set up I dont have to worry about power use.
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