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Old 06-05-2009, 09:41   #31
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noise specs.

Originally Posted by DeepFrz View Post
Hope Light, that site has no specs. on noise. Only a statement (gee, a dealer's statement) that it is quieter. Still no measurements.
Practical Sailor did a test on the Air Breeze and found it to be significantly quieter. I purchased one based on that article, and have to tell you it's not anywhere near as quiet as the six-blade types such as the Rutland 913, especially in light air. It does, however, a better job in a heavy breeze. Indeed, I've found that my Air Breeze seems to get quieter the more it blows, probably because there's a point where the ambient noise from the rigging drowns out the turbine.

If there's a reason to complain about the Air Breeze, it's that it seems to spin out frequently, especially if the wind is shifty. Seems that the tail fin is a bit undersized.
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Old 06-05-2009, 17:02   #32
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Stop switch report

Originally Posted by chSunspirit View Post
chSunspirit, here...

I am still "fishing for" any of the "out-there"experience with retro-fitted blades that FIT the Air Marine..THAT would be greatly appreciated as well as experience with the STOP switch that is offered by SW....and offered NOW as a "better STOP switch" would be great info....thanks to all...light!ly ch Sunspirit.
G'Day Sunspirit,

Can't help with the aftermarket blades, but can comment on the stop switch: The one that they sold as of about 4 years ago has worked just fine in a full time cruising environment. It is really a no brainer to wire up, 'cause all the switch does is short out the windgen after disconnecting it from the battery bank. The manual that came with my unit showed it clearly enough... it's just a single pole double throw switch that can stand the 30+ amps that the thing puts out in a real blow (and yes, we have seen that much just before the internal regulator shut it off!).

Hope that this helps, mate!


Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II, still hanging out in Port Cygnet. Summer was nice... it was on a Tuesday... and now autumn is here and being pretty nice so far!
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Old 07-05-2009, 03:35   #33
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stop switch/Air Marine

Thanks to Jim and crew of Insatiable........I'll be rigging that switch when I get out of the shadow of these pine trees....when I'll get sustained overwindage.......

a further question......the Air Marine hasn't scared off the "neighhbours" down in Oz?....mayBe I'm overly anticipating the obvious...that some folks'll always prefer the smell of diesel in the morning.......eeks!!!! We've had a lot of that in the wider Large-scale WINDFARM context in New England...the Olde school is being dragged "kicking and screaming" into a renewable future/Present!!!.......'s about time!!

and I'll keep tuned for word of a blade retrofit... I should have a back-up set I spoze....and if there is a quieter alternative........thanks......chSunspirit
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Old 07-05-2009, 20:32   #34
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Air-X again

G'DAy again Sunspirit,

The Air-X is condemned by many for its high noise levels. In our experience, they ain't so bad as all that. We did take the trouble to carefully sand the blades down to a 600 grit finish, and that seems to reduce the low to moderate wind noise (a sort of whooshy whistle??) a bit. We also carefully set the blades so that there is an identical distance between the blade tips. Seems that the sockets in the hub allow a bit of slop, and it is easy to get some slight discrepancies between the blades. Getting it right reduces vibration markedly, which reduces the transmitted noise into the hull. Don't know why the vendor doesn't mention this in the instruction manual!

The real bad rep for these turbines is a holdover from the previous model 403. These had no electronic brake to avoid overspeed, but used flexing of the blades to limit speed in strong winds. The noise generated by this action was an unearthly howl, and was pretty unbearable!

I have several of the Breeze models on nearby boats and they do seem a bit quieter than the Air-X... but apparently at the cost of lower output. One wonders: half as loud, half as much peak power???

The advantages of the marine models are all in corrosion protection -- powdercoating and maybe some additional seals and anodizing. Aluminium corrosion in a marine atmosphere is pretty hard to avoid, so I reckon that unless you are willing to disassemble a new unit and do a really good job of painting it (not easy nor particularly cheap to do), the additional cost of the marine version is a bargain.

And finally, in a cruising environment, carrying a spare set of blades is a good plan. We've had them lost to birds and to errant halyards, and were glad that we had spares.

So, get out from under the pines and go sailing, mate!

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II, still hanging out in Port Cygnet. Summer was nice... it was on a Tuesday... and now autumn is here and being pretty nice so far!
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Old 08-05-2009, 00:23   #35
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Originally Posted by tomj View Post
Anyone know (really know) the exact differences between the Air-X Land wind generator versus the Air-X Marine wind generator???? the "Land" generator is quite a bit less expensive than the "Marine" generator. It appears that the performance specs are virtually the same. I would seriously doubt whether there are any actual differences, but what do I know!!??
I just read Power plucked from the air | Articles & Archives | Ocean Navigator: The magazine for long-distance offshore sailing and power voyaging

Seems that other than the comments in this forum discussion around anodizing and corrosion protection, the brushes are a key difference to prevent AM interference.

What concerns me about this discussion is that most people find the Air-X to be reasonably noisy. In the article above, it mentions the Red Baron being extremely quiet and capable of becoming a water generator. I think I'll investigate this a little more. Anyone got any comments about the Red Baron?


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Old 08-05-2009, 00:33   #36
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Damn. Seems that the Four Winds Red Baron isn't being manufactured any more and it's future is in doubt.


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Old 10-05-2009, 08:26   #37
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What irritates me is how these wind generator companies market them. They should all stick to a standard that is compatible, instead they muddle the waters buy using figures that are so different from each other.
All I would want to know is, what is the start up speed and how much amps would be supplied at that speed, and a graph showing amps from that start up speed to ~20 knots.
I don't care how many Kwh per month, or year.
And how about actual noise numbers ate say 25 feet from the unit using a meter?
and last how much vibration using their mount is expected ?
Numbers like these are usable to a sailor.

I think I will stick to purchasing a KISS in the future. Until I see better statistics from places like practical sailor or SSCA.
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Old 11-05-2009, 02:41   #38
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Old 23-08-2009, 20:55   #39
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I am a bit lost with the model upgrades (303+403) and the Airmarine/AirX names. I have an old Airmarine with smashed blades caused by a bird strike though I have no idea which model it is or how to find out. I was going to order the 40 blade set and hope for the best....any advice?
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Old 12-09-2009, 05:14   #40
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Air 303 and403use blade twist to depower the generator in a blow This makes a noise like a 747 in reverse very noisy at about 30 knots+. Air x and Air Breeze use electronic brake to slow down the rotation in the same conditions 303and 403 blades are the same both air x and air breeze are diferant you can tell apart by tail shapes and breeze has white blades
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Old 25-06-2011, 14:50   #41
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Re: Air-X Land vs AIR-X Marine Wind Generator

Originally Posted by senormechanico View Post
Powder coated case and hub. I don't know if there's any other, but I bought a land version for my house inverter system for backup power. The Air x is mounted on a piling on my salt water dock. After a few years, the hub cracked one of the blades due to corrosion expansion behind the blade. What happened must have been something to see as it threw half the blade which unbalanced the rest of the assembly enough that it completely jumped off the mount! This of course broke both of the other blades. The boat was tied up directly adjacent to the piling with the wind generator at the time. I found a few small pieces of the blades lying on my boat and the dock, but no damage was done to the boat or the dock.When I saw the wind generator hanging by its wires, I expected to see a blade sticking out of the side of the boat.

If I had to do it over, I'd get the powder coated version even if it's more expensive.

Steve B.
I LOATHE powder coating as its not all that its claimed to be. Eventually a spot will lift and the wet will get underneath. Once this happens a poultice is formed and corrosion will "tunnel" underneath. I will burn the stuff off where possible and have steel items hot dip galvanised. OK I live on the Atlantic coast in North Cornwall where the prevailing south westerlies bring salt spray ashore. This results in "Marine Corrosion" and "Severe Marine Corrosion" (by the way the words are not mine they are those of a top class painting contractor) Some years ago I had some wrought iron gates made in Cattedown, Plymouth. The company that made the gates also makes garden furniture that can be left outside all year round and won't blow over. The white garden furniture costs more than the galvanised because the powder coating is applied over the galvanising. The company WILL NOT powder coat directly onto steel because the rust will soon bleed through. I think that that just about sums up powder coating!

Another way with aluminium is to (1) grit blast. (2) paint with special metals etching primer (3) paint with good quality paint. This is more laborious than powder coating which is the reason that it is seldom done commercially.
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Old 25-06-2011, 15:28   #42
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Re: Air Breeze

Originally Posted by Hope Light View Post
The site of an Air Breeze vendor below has some stats and good prices: stats

Southwest Wind Power Air Breeze Wind Turbine Marine 200W 12V
I purchased an Air Breeze after listening to the unit and finding the noise a lot lower than Air X but not as quiet as my old 5 blader but its out put had me sold. I then mounted the unit on my mizzen and have no complaint about the noise I cant see what the fuss is about with the noise If you wont total silence find a deserted Island I dont use it in busy bays or in a marina.
I do have a big bitch about the unit as after one year the white blades started to disintergrate ( they have now changed over to carbon fibre) and the whole body started to corrode. After many un answered emails to the suppliers quoted above I painted the blades with epoxy and repainted the unit using etch primer but it has started to go again. I belive that they have now improved the paint job as well. I sail mostly in the trade winds so have great output from this unit both at sea and anchor. Jacko
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Old 25-06-2011, 17:08   #43
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Re: Air Breeze

Originally Posted by Jacko View Post
I cant see what the fuss is about with the noise If you wont total silence find a deserted Island Jacko
If you want total silence, get solar panels.

Our boat has nothing but solar and we've achieved battery load balance by going to all LED's and a fridge overhaul.

Hot water is still via engine due to 49 degrees latitude and a wife who has decided she likes "Contrast in the Seasons".
When I pointed out how she complains about not being able to sleep through all the wind noise in the winter, she gave me "The Look"...(sigh)
There are now only two groups. Those who canít unsee and those who wonít look. All it takes is a tiny peek and the latter becomes the former.
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generator, wind generator

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