Yes i rely heavily on it because the winds here often hit 20 kts inflow or outflow and the channel can be treacherously dry as they just did an emergency
10 ft wide dredge. With the motor in idle reverse half the way to the slip i can often end up coming into the slip hot under bare poles. The vortex here entering and exiting the channel on a hot sunny day can produce a nasty 3 ft chop at windspeeds in excess of 25 knots, one time i had to get in during a daysail where it was 30-40 gust 50, the boat had a 20 degree heel under bare poles (fun place to learn how to sail, lol).
If the winds are too nutty here i can usually motor out to the point and what was 30 knots near the channel calms down to 15. It takes a quite a bit of power to fight that kind of wind
with the windage of a sailboat. Some of the guys here sail into their slip on night cocktail cruises after the sun sets and the wind
calms down, but i dont see anyone but the most experienced try it during the daytime and my slipmate is the guy who wins all the races and hes banged into the docks right hard trying it every time ive seen.
Last year on my vacation
was wrong and i had to motor for 12 hours to get back because there was no wind. The nearest harbour from here is a good 6+ hours under sail so if something goes wrong with wind or sail theres no safe harbour for at least 16nm.
I may even just buy brand new from the factory for the warranty and peice of mind. If i buy it feom the local dealership maybe i can even demand they march down here and fix it at the docks. That would be about $4000. I can buy the one my mechanic offered me for $1500 and i can probably squeeze a small warranty out of him too.
Not sure which way to go but good call on checking the charging
ability. The charge coming off this one is terrible, just a magneto doesnt even put out enough to run the sounder.