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Old 08-06-2016, 13:10   #46
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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Originally Posted by daletournier View Post
It depends where you sail. I just sailed 700nm up the java coast, slowly but I sailed. The moment I hit Sumatra I've motored approx 500nm. You can't sail if there's no wind. I'm almost on the equator and assume I'll motor the rest of the Sumatra coast. A good diesel is very much part of a cruising sailboat for me, its not a auxiliary, its the other engine.

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Definitely there are places like where you are that certainly justify a big reliable engine! I crewed on a delivery on the other side, through the Strait of Malacca, and there was no wind at all for over two hundred miles, in fact all the way into Singapore as I recall. I was glad we had a big engine that pushed us along at around 10 knots.
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Old 08-06-2016, 14:29   #47
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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Originally Posted by SURV69 View Post
I find myself reading more and more about sailors opting for the "Zen", of no engine ... NO engine, at all ... Nada.

I find the argument for no engine exciting ... valid and in the spirit of discovery ... trailbazing, but I'm not quite ready for such a move.

Considering the "Zen", of engineless sailing, why does it appear to me that all discussions about going electric always revolve around 48 volts and 2-3 kw, or even 5+kw systems, with scads of batteries?

Why do discussions about going electric require one to mimic the EC engine that a sailor no longer wants?

I don't want an electric sailboat with a Genset(another &$%#*&#@%&$ engine). I don't want an electric motor that will guarantee me a 30 mile range with the option of going full hull speed.

But nonetheless and always, without fail, a discussion about electric motors fall quickly into the categories of comparison with either gas or deizel(you know ... I hate diezel, and it's spelled "funny" too).

Two years ago I used an 80 pound thrust Minnkota on my Newport 28 and whenever I took it into the river, I always felt that about twice the power would be more than enough for me(after all the Minnkota took me where I needed ... barely)

Is there anyone else who respects the idea of a sailboat being a near 100% sailboat with an auxillary engine(motor)? JUST an auxillary motor for docking and undocking ... nothing more ... nothing less.

Is there really something inherently wrong with wanting an "undersized" electric engine that tops out at, say 4 knots for a 30' sailboat?
I think it is a great idea. Everyone should be sailing around the world and entering marinas without power. I mean what could possibly go wrong.....
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how long has this been going on and why wasn't I told about it earlier.....
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Old 08-06-2016, 14:39   #48
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

I believe the original premise is false. I don't believe there is an increase I the number of engine-less boats (or drastically underpowered boats).

I think there is a "look at me" mentality combined with easy promotion thru the internet that makes it seem more popular than it is.

You also have a number of folks who simply can't afford to replace their engine so they make do without or strap a 5hp outboard on the back of a 40' boat and hope for the best. They may then rationalize it by making "Zen" claims. If they had the cash, I bet most would jump at the chance to have a reliable engine.

Think about how many production boats over 28' are even available in an engineless configuration? If it was any significant number, manufacturers would be making engineless models.
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Old 08-06-2016, 15:02   #49
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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Originally Posted by Don C L View Post
Definitely there are places like where you are that certainly justify a big reliable engine! I crewed on a delivery on the other side, through the Strait of Malacca, and there was no wind at all for over two hundred miles, in fact all the way into Singapore as I recall. I was glad we had a big engine that pushed us along at around 10 knots.
There are lots of places like that. Anywhere where there is a lot of ship traffic and a lot of TSS's, will be difficult without a motor. You are not allowed to bob around in a TSS waiting for the wind to change. You have to get out of the way in order to avoid interfering with traffic, as is the obligation of every vessel under 20 meters and every sailing vessel of any size.

You are also not allowed to transit the Kiel Canal, and many other waterways with heavy traffic, without having a motor in operation.

That doesn't make it impossible without a motor, but you'll have to sail a long ways around sometimes.
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Old 08-06-2016, 15:23   #50
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

There is an H28 in NZ with electric motor. Its for sale on TradeMe. The owner will know all about it. And this http://biankablog.bl.../0 ... OG BLOG
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Old 10-06-2016, 04:35   #51
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Lightbulb Pro's and amature cruisers

The pro cruisers always sail as if the engine could stop at any moment.
The amateur cruisers thinks the engine can't fail.

3 important cruising uses for an engine (electric or not):

1) Pull the anchor
2) Negotiate narrow straits #1
3) Maneuver in harbour / marina #2


#1 This is everywhere where you may bring yourself into harms way or harm others.
Straights, atols, inlets, channels including Panama & Suez.

#2 This is everywhere where somebody else may bring yourself into harms way.
Most people in harbours and marinas have forgotten the art of sailing a yacht in closed quarters, and thus has also forgotten to take this possibility into account. He may be liable, but I'd rather have an undamaged boat.


These are all high importance & low risk or short higher risk uses.


Sailing or anchoring for longer time in an area or weather where you rely 100% on the engine is bad seamanship.
Or it at least requires 100% redundancy in the whole propulsion system.


Engine types
By suitability to 1), 2) & 3):

1) Electric #1
2) Petrol / gas #2
3) Diesel #3


#1 Electric systems have a higher start probability than any of the other types.

3# Petrol engines are light and actually happy to be run for shorter time at a time. You have to be vigilant with the electrical sys and spark plugs.

#3 Diesel needs to be run for extended time to keep healthy, not something an experienced cruiser is likely to do due to cost and environment.
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Old 10-06-2016, 04:54   #52
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Re: Pro's and amature cruisers

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Originally Posted by Junk Viking View Post
The pro cruisers always sail as if the engine could stop at any moment.
The amateur cruisers thinks the engine can't fail.

3 important cruising uses for an engine (electric or not):

1) Pull the anchor
2) Negotiate narrow straits #1
3) Maneuver in harbour / marina #2


#1 This is everywhere where you may bring yourself into harms way or harm others.
Straights, atols, inlets, channels including Panama & Suez.

#2 This is everywhere where somebody else may bring yourself into harms way.
Most people in harbours and marinas have forgotten the art of sailing a yacht in closed quarters, and thus has also forgotten to take this possibility into account. He may be liable, but I'd rather have an undamaged boat.


These are all high importance & low risk or short higher risk uses.


Sailing or anchoring for longer time in an area or weather where you rely 100% on the engine is bad seamanship.
Or it at least requires 100% redundancy in the whole propulsion system.


Engine types
By suitability to 1), 2) & 3):

1) Electric #1
2) Petrol / gas #2
3) Diesel #3


#1 Electric systems have a higher start probability than any of the other types.

3# Petrol engines are light and actually happy to be run for shorter time at a time. You have to be vigilant with the electrical sys and spark plugs.

#3 Diesel needs to be run for extended time to keep healthy, not something an experienced cruiser is likely to do due to cost and environment.

Great! Yet another one who tells us the difference between "pro" and "amateur" cruisers

I don't agree, however, that "pro" cruisers sail "as if the engine could stop any moment". If that were true, they would never go out in a calm, would never go near a lee shore, and probably would never go into a marina or tight harbor. Of course we rely on our engines, and work to keep them reliable, while keeping in mind the risk that something may go wrong. Or maybe I'm an "amature" cruiser You don't for example go up in an airplane, assuming that the wings may fall off at any moment, do you?

And by the way, wouldn't the same argument apply to the rig? If you should assume the engine could fail at any time, shouldn't you assume that you could lose the mast any time? And if so, what if you don't have an engine capable of propelling your boat against the wind for a fair distance?

I also don't agree that "real cruisers" never run their diesel engines for extended periods of time. I put about 300 hours a year on mine, for example.



You missed a few important uses for the motor, by the way:

1. Make miles in a calm. May be necessary to reach a destination, or get out of the way of a weather system, avoid a lock closing, etc.

2. Move out of the way of traffic in a calm.

3. Navigate in places where it is forbidden to use sails or sails alone (like the Kiel Canal).

4. Get across a TSS quickly and perpendicular to the traffic, as required by the COLREGS.

5. Increase speed in very light wind by motor sailing. Reasons like #1.

6. Claw off a lee shore when the boat is embayed in rough weather, usually in combination with the sails.

7. Get to windward in storm conditions, in combination with the sails or a sail.

8. Keep from getting rolled in big breaking waves, by "jogging" to windward as fishing boats and small ships do.

9. Move at all if you lose the rig.

10. Generate electricity using the alternator.

11. Make hot water using a coolant loop in the calorifier.

12. Warm up the boat by opening the engine compartment.


I'm sure there are a hundred more. Not everyone will need their propulsion system to do all of those things, but many will, and many more things besides.
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Old 10-06-2016, 05:28   #53
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Re: Pro's and amature cruisers

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Originally Posted by Junk Viking View Post
The pro cruisers always sail as if the engine could stop at any moment.
The amateur cruisers thinks the engine can't fail.

***So power cruisers by definition are not pro's. Taken literally, either option is silly. Of course an engine can fail (but so can the sails). On the other hand if we are out on a nice day just tooling along in uncongested open water, an engine failure is a nuisance not a major issue. Reality falls somewhere in between. 3 important cruising uses for an engine (electric or not):

1) Pull the anchor
2) Negotiate narrow straits #1
3) Maneuver in harbour / marina #2


#1 This is everywhere where you may bring yourself into harms way or harm others.
Straights, atols, inlets, channels including Panama & Suez.

#2 This is everywhere where somebody else may bring yourself into harms way.
****You forgot the most common usage...cruising when the wind is not favorable. Sailing or anchoring for longer time in an area or weather where you rely 100% on the engine is bad seamanship.
Or it at least requires 100% redundancy in the whole propulsion system.

***So by definition the vast majority of fishing boats and commercial freighters are practicing bad seamanship since they typically use a single engine and rely on it 100%.
Engine types
By suitability to 1), 2) & 3):

1) Electric #1
2) Petrol / gas #2
3) Diesel #3


#1 Electric systems have a higher start probability than any of the other types.

***Please share the evidence that for equally maintained propulsion systems electric is more likely to start? I believe this is a theory more than anything else as there are not enough electric powered cruising boats to get meaningful statistics. I will agree, in the exceedingly rare situation where you need to go from sailing to instant power, the electric system will probably gain you 5-10seconds but that is balanced against the situation where you need maximum thrust for significant periods of time and supplying that power (without a diesel generator) is not feasible. 3# Petrol engines are light and actually happy to be run for shorter time at a time. You have to be vigilant with the electrical sys and spark plugs.

***No just like diesels they like to be run long enough to get up to temperature. Of course a couple miles in and out of port can be enough to get them up to temperature. #3 Diesel needs to be run for extended time to keep healthy, not something an experienced cruiser is likely to do due to cost and environment. ***As long as you get it up to temperature, no need to run for hours. A 20minute run to get it up to temperature is doing no significant harm. At 1gal per hour cost and environment are largely a non-issue compared to just about any other modern lifestyle.
Being prepared is good seamanship. Being paranoid is not a sign of professionalism and often has negative side effects.
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Old 10-06-2016, 05:42   #54
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Re: Pro's and amature cruisers

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Being prepared is good seamanship. Being paranoid is not a sign of professionalism and often has negative side effects.
+1 Well stated.

Risk management is a key part of seamanship.

Risk management is a much more complicated job than just assuming that every system on the boat could fail at any moment.
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Old 10-06-2016, 15:05   #55
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

When it comes to it I have a sailboat to travel/cruise on, not to sail. I like to sail and got it for when sailing is possible. But if you got a sailboat to sail mainly and travel second then that is OK with me and wish you well in your ticky tacky life and waiting around for the wind to always be "right".
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Old 10-06-2016, 15:23   #56
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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When it comes to it I have a sailboat to travel/cruise on, not to sail. I like to sail and got it for when sailing is possible. But if you got a sailboat to sail mainly and travel second then that is OK with me and wish you well in your ticky tacky life and waiting around for the wind to always be "right".
Ticky tacky life? That seems more than a little rude and judgmental. I am sure that you, like all of us, would not particularly appreciate having your cruising style denigrated. Why do it to someone else for no reason? If you don't agree, you can always provide what you do and back it up with facts that support your position.

Being insulting for the sake of being insulting usually results in no one listening to you, and you seem to have a lot of good info and be in a really exciting time in your voyaging. It would be a pity to become one of the cranky, rude posters that everyone just automatically tunes out.
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Old 10-06-2016, 16:13   #57
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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When it comes to it I have a sailboat to travel/cruise on, not to sail. I like to sail and got it for when sailing is possible. But if you got a sailboat to sail mainly and travel second then that is OK with me and wish you well in your ticky tacky life and waiting around for the wind to always be "right".
Ticky Tacky! It's a good name for a boat!
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Old 10-06-2016, 18:15   #58
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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When it comes to it I have a sailboat to travel/cruise on, not to sail. I like to sail and got it for when sailing is possible. But if you got a sailboat to sail mainly and travel second then that is OK with me and wish you well in your ticky tacky life and waiting around for the wind to always be "right".
100% agree. For me its not the journey its the destination. My boat is my home that gets me places. Sure, on the nice sailing days it's great, but honestly after several hours quite often if I could teleport me and freeform to the next port I probably would.

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Old 10-06-2016, 18:43   #59
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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Ticky tacky life? That seems more than a little rude and judgmental. I am sure that you, like all of us, would not particularly appreciate having your cruising style denigrated. Why do it to someone else for no reason? If you don't agree, you can always provide what you do and back it up with facts that support your position.

Being insulting for the sake of being insulting usually results in no one listening to you, and you seem to have a lot of good info and be in a really exciting time in your voyaging. It would be a pity to become one of the cranky, rude posters that everyone just automatically tunes out.
take a pill or something if you found my post so "insulting" as you need it badly
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Old 10-06-2016, 20:44   #60
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Re: If No Engine ... Why All The Fuss About "Proper", BIG Electric Motor?

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take a pill or something if you found my post so "insulting" as you need it badly
Would you not find the term "ticky tacky" insulting if it were applied to you and those following your style of cruising?
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