The following Tips and Hints are based on our:
- Sailing experience.
- Electronic studies.
- Years of practical experience.
Responsibility would not be taken in case of possible failures.
This is just a guide line based on our knowledge.
Everything you attempt is at your own risk.
Our intention is to receive a better understanding on the different technical subjects.
Most alternators built into boats, having their origin in the car industry. Efficient charging is not needed and not volitional
Typically a “normal” alternator charges the first couple of minutes more or less efficently and after this the current goes down to some Amps like 5A.
The next “problem” is the max. charging voltage. This is mostly only about 13V.
Therefore you have to run your motor for an infinite time to charge your service batteries.
On a boat it is totally different:
The service batteries should be charged to their maximum in a minimum of time
How do you achieve this:
e.g. with an external alternator regulator (we made the best experience with the Sterling regulators)
Depending on your type of battery
open lead acid batteries = max. charge voltage 14,8V
all kind of sealed batteries = max. charge voltage 14,4V
the regulator forces the alternator to supply the max. current until the service batteries are full.
Do it !
This is the best way to get power
Where to mount the panel(s) ? – That’s quite often a problem
But with the solar panel mounts from NOA you cover a lot of possible places.
E.g. on a U-bar behind the bimini. Cheap and very good solution on boats with aft cockpit.
Or – like “ears” on the pushpit. You do not “waste” space on deck – this is also the cheapest solution
Solar Panel Regulators:
Please replace your old shunt regulator(s) with a modern one !!
Do you want to heat your boat, or do you want to charge your batteries ? – This question says it all.
Our preferred solar regulators are from Phocos.
These regulators, which we program ourselves, ensure the best charging
I had a wind generator installed on my boat.
I would not do it again.
O.K. with a lot of wind, you have a lot of power – but only with the efficient generators.
They are expensive, loud, dangerous, heavy and it is always a problem to mount them.