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Thread: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

  1. #1
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    Default Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Has anyone used one?

    I am considering the option of a 6hp electric for my ts16.

    I like the idea of it being light and quiet.

    Is there a drawback I should be aware of?

    Can you recommend any brands and models?

    Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    I'm running a torqeedo 1003cl ( the new model is 1103cl) which is 3hp but thrust equivalent to 4hp. It's a self contained unit with the battery on top where the engine normally goes. I chose to have the forward control version but tiller is the standard. My boat is a 15ft Tammie Norrie so it's not as heavy as yours but with 3 adults onboard it will do 7 knots, only for an hour though. The motor will drive a boat up to 1.5 tonnes

    The onboard gps computer shows speed, % charge, running time and range. This allows you to chose a speed that will give the range you need. If I slow to 2.5 knots I can get 30 NM out of it.

    It's fairly quiet although there is some gear noise from the motor but I believe the new model is quieter.

    It's relatively light and easy to handle and can be thrown in the car without risk of fuel/oil leaks or smells.

    They do make bigger units but they have remote batteries you buy separately.

    Downside is the initial outlay, they ain't cheap but there's no maintenance or fuel costs.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    I used a 55# thrust trolling motor and 12v car battery to drive a 20' 2000# keel sloop, but only in a calm. It was easier than rowing.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve TN 15 View Post
    I'm running a torqeedo 1003cl .......

    but there's no maintenance or fuel costs.
    Not quite true as I found out. http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...light=torqeedo

    Jeff

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    I have an 80# thrust trolling motor (24 volt 60 amp) on a 26' Mackinaw, 6000#, aftermarket Kipawa propeller. Flat calm I get about 3.4 mph which is fine for getting in and out of a harbor, mostly worthless in a headwind of 10-14mph, and with the relentless SouthEasters we have been getting in Chicago lately this has been a problem.

    Ken

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    I just installed a 24V MinnKota on my 18' yawl. It's powered by a pair of 65ah lithium batteries and delivers a max of 80 pounds thrust. It's quiet and far, far more agreeable and easier to use than a gas motor. I row the boat when there's no wind. The motor is to maintain control coming in and out of harbor when it's windy -- to the point where I can't control the boat with the oars. The motor does this fine.

    Total cost for motor and batteries was about $2,000, less than a Torqueedo of equal thrust and with greater battery life. As you can see, this boat has no transom, so I did need a long shaft motor so Torqueedo wasn't an option in any case. I haven't used it enough to say how many hours runtime I can get, but a 90 minute test barely put a dent in the battery level.
    2020 - Motor setup.jpg
    -Dave

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Woxbox View Post
    I just installed a 24V MinnKota on my 18' yawl. It's powered by a pair of 65ah lithium batteries and delivers a max of 80 pounds thrust. It's quiet and far, far more agreeable and easier to use than a gas motor. I row the boat when there's no wind. The motor is to maintain control coming in and out of harbor when it's windy -- to the point where I can't control the boat with the oars. The motor does this fine.

    Total cost for motor and batteries was about $2,000, less than a Torqueedo of equal thrust and with greater battery life. As you can see, this boat has no transom, so I did need a long shaft motor so Torqueedo wasn't an option in any case. I haven't used it enough to say how many hours runtime I can get, but a 90 minute test barely put a dent in the battery level.
    2020 - Motor setup.jpg
    Impressive.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by jpatrick View Post
    Not quite true as I found out. http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...light=torqeedo

    Jeff
    Mate, thanks for the heads up on that. I just checked mine and found slight surface rust on the pin.
    I cleaned it up with a bit of wet & dry, ran a string back and forth through the shaft to clean it out, applied lanotec and reassembled.

    All in all a really simple and quick job, now that I know I need to do it!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by hereselmo1 View Post
    Has anyone used one?

    I am considering the option of a 6hp electric for my ts16.

    I like the idea of it being light and quiet.

    Is there a drawback I should be aware of?

    Can you recommend any brands and models?

    Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk

    Check the mounting arrangement and how much it flexes and check how it accelerates. I bought one for my TS16 a few years ago, I think it was a Minn Kota 55lb thrust, but it was a disaster:

    On the first use I nearly lost it when it ripped itself off the transom.....the cause being twofold:

    Firstly it didn’t have a smooth and gradual throttle advance but instead it had something like 9 speeds and it was meant to click from one speed to the next - no problem with that in theory - the problem was this one went from trickling along on the first click to ludicrous mode on the second click..

    Secondly the transom mount was nylon or some sort of plastic and no matter how hard I tried to screw it down it flexed. So even though I managed to hang on to the outboard by the throttle when it ripped itself off the first time there was nothing that I could do to stop it ripping off subsequently as long as it was going from nothing to everything in one click of the throttle.

    Even though the throttle issue was likely a fault (I never got to see what it did beyond the second click to see if it had 7 more clicks after that) - the mounting arrangement was enough for me to take it back and get a refund, particularly because it stuffed up all our plans for using it with family over that Christmas up in Noosa and I was pretty pizzed off with it.

    I switched to a Tohatsu 3.5hp 4 Stroke long-leg (and sadly I’ve hardly used the boat since so the outboard has probably 2 hours on it.......)
    Last edited by Larks; 07-27-2020 at 12:17 AM.
    Larks

    “It’s impossible”, said pride.
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    “It’s pointless”, said reason.
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    I have an "EPropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus XS" on my 20ft. BayRaider and do not look back at all my various combustion engines in the past. Electric is here to stay. Range, power, convenience all there, and NOISELESS into the bargain.
    Caveats: Power Electrics (Torqeedo and EPropulsion) shaft lengths do not correspond to the shaft lengths one is used to from the combusters. They are longer in the shaft, and they have bigger propellers. And, I initially had issues with the standard 2-blade propeller of my electric so put on a smaller diameter but same pitch 3-blade from a Tohatsu/Mariner 3.5, and that worked better. C.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Larks View Post
    Check the mounting arrangement and how much it flexes and check how it accelerates. I bought one for my TS16 a few years ago, I think it was a Minn Kota 55lb thrust, but it was a disaster:

    On the first use I nearly lost it when it ripped itself off the transom.....the cause being twofold:

    Firstly it didn’t have a smooth and gradual throttle advance but instead it had something like 9 speeds and it was meant to click from one speed to the next - no problem with that in theory - the problem was this one went from trickling along on the first click to ludicrous mode on the second click..

    Secondly the transom mount was nylon or some sort of plastic and no matter how hard I tried to screw it down it flexed. So even though I managed to hang on to the outboard by the throttle when it ripped itself off the first time there was nothing that I could do to stop it ripping off subsequently as long as it was going from nothing to everything in one click of the throttle.

    Even though the throttle issue was likely a fault (I never got to see what it did beyond the second click to see if it had 7 more clicks after that) - the mounting arrangement was enough for me to take it back and get a refund, particularly because it stuffed up all our plans for using it with family over that Christmas up in Noosa and I was pretty pizzed off with it.

    I switched to a Tohatsu 3.5hp 4 Stroke long-leg (and sadly I’ve hardly used the boat since so the outboard has probably 2 hours on it.......)
    Larks -- a disaster, indeed. I don't know about the other models, by my 80 pound thrust "Riptide" (saltwater grade) MinnKota has a sturdy cast aluminum bracket and steps up smoothly through the throttle settings. The long shaft does flex, but this does not appear to be a problem.
    -Dave

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Woxbox View Post
    Larks -- a disaster, indeed. I don't know about the other models, by my 80 pound thrust "Riptide" (saltwater grade) MinnKota has a sturdy cast aluminum bracket and steps up smoothly through the throttle settings. The long shaft does flex, but this does not appear to be a problem.
    I am currently enjoying the difference that brushless technology (Milwaukee, their M18 line) makes in the world of battery powered tools and wonder when Minnkota might get off the brick and go brushless on their trolling motors?

    Ken

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    The MinnKota Riptide looks like a great option. Thank you!

    Does it come with a battery or is that sold separately?

    Does anyone have a solar panel to charge while they are on the water?
    Last edited by hereselmo1; 08-02-2020 at 05:26 PM.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by hereselmo1 View Post
    The MinnKota Riptide looks like a great option. Thank you!

    Does it come with a battery or is that sold separately?

    Does anyone have a solar panel to charge while they are on the water?
    Looks remarkably similar to what I remember from the one I bought - in so far as the nylon/plastic mounting bracket and the set speeds at least.



    Perhaps as long as you set your mounting plate up on your transom to suit it you’d be better off than I was - I assume their biggest market is aluminium fishing boats/tinnies so maybe use an aluminium plate on the outside of the transom, it may give the grip that you need with the plastic mount...

    I had to buy battery, charger etc separately but the retailer (in Brisbane) had everything required and more. I already had a set up in my previous ute to charge a seperate battery from it so would have used that with the outboard’s battery - if I’d kept it long enough to need it.
    Larks

    “It’s impossible”, said pride.
    “It’s risky”, said experience.
    “It’s pointless”, said reason.
    “Give it a try”, whispered the heart.

    LPBC Beneficiary

    "Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great!"

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Battery and charger are separate purchases. Solar recharging is impractical because it would require a huge array to be useful.

    The market for the bigger units is heavy bass boats in the U.S. Those guys troll with the all day. I don't know how many batteries or total amp hours of charge they need to do that.
    Last edited by Woxbox; 08-02-2020 at 10:30 PM.
    -Dave

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    We have no idea what you're doing in your boat, how long you need power, tides and currents in your area, etc.

    Sailing the local duckpond, trolling motor -=- fine. Pushing boat full of kids off a rocky lee shore in heavy winds -=- not so good. Fighting river and/or tidal currents for days -=- not possible. Recharging with solar -=- may take several days depending on size of panels and battery systems.

    That's why so many of us have small gas outboards when we'd vastly prefer an affordable, reliable alternative.
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Has anyone used the Edson side mount bracket.Pricey but looks a nice bit of kit.
    Ballantines boat yard mention a fixture for holding an out board to the mast/in my case an electric motor.Anyone used one or have a different take on storing the unit whilst sailing.

    Frobisher

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    I’ve never understood the torquedo option from a price standpoint. Maybe it’s a Chevy versus Mercedes thing. The saltwater minkota has been on my mind for a while.

    I think there is a place for solar. Specifically, if you use the boat occasionally and have something like a week between uses. You could always come back to a full charge. Also, I like the idea of a solar panel bimini. We have a lot of sun energy here though.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve TN 15 View Post
    Mate, thanks for the heads up on that. I just checked mine and found slight surface rust on the pin.
    I cleaned it up with a bit of wet & dry, ran a string back and forth through the shaft to clean it out, applied lanotec and reassembled.

    All in all a really simple and quick job, now that I know I need to do it!
    Just had one fail up despite grease etc. I should have run it longer in fresh after I took the motor off last year. Good idea to have a spare for two bucks.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    One also needs the proper wrench to remove the nut holding the prop onto the shaft. And, likely, a prop puller of some sort. I cobbled together a small kit to do all of this and keep it on my boat in a plastic container. Someday it will be useful.

    Jeff

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by jpatrick View Post
    One also needs the proper wrench to remove the nut holding the prop onto the shaft. And, likely, a prop puller of some sort. I cobbled together a small kit to do all of this and keep it on my boat in a plastic container. Someday it will be useful.

    Jeff
    Yup. i think the nut is 19mm, and a couple of screwdrivers applied carefully pulls the prop. You can get additional washers and a nut in a kit as well if you think you might drop something overboard. Rebuilding the prop's interior requires something like gflex if you actually hit something to break the pin. But the pin will fail all by itself because of crevice cracks, so flush things with fresh routinely.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I’ve never understood the torquedo option from a price standpoint. Maybe it’s a Chevy versus Mercedes thing. The saltwater minkota has been on my mind for a while.

    I think there is a place for solar. Specifically, if you use the boat occasionally and have something like a week between uses. You could always come back to a full charge. Also, I like the idea of a solar panel bimini. We have a lot of sun energy here though.

    While cruising my ketch I saw a fleet of sailing dinghies with solar auxiliary. They only needed it to get in and out of the basin. Maybe in Norfolk Va.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Fuller View Post
    Yup. i think the nut is 19mm, and a couple of screwdrivers applied carefully pulls the prop. You can get additional washers and a nut in a kit as well if you think you might drop something overboard. Rebuilding the prop's interior requires something like gflex if you actually hit something to break the pin. But the pin will fail all by itself because of crevice cracks, so flush things with fresh routinely.
    This is a photo of the repair that I made to my prop after the shear pin broke through the plastic and protruded into the adjacent cavities. I used regular West 205/206 with cabosil as a filler. G-flex would no doubt be better but I didn't have any in the shop. The regular stuff is hard enough to work and it really just sits there acting as a thrust block to the shear pin. I think that my failure was actually a two part event. At one point I used the motor on my dinghy to run out and back to my mooring several times. I know I ran into some rocks right at shoreline but the motor pushed the dinghy fine after that so I didn't investigate. There were a couple of small chips in the blades. I assume that it was during that shore impact that the shear pin did not shear but, instead, broke through the plastic slot that fits it. There was some vibration in the motor that I kept telling myself I ought to investigate. (A user error, for sure.) Much later when I was using the motor on my day sailer the pin failed completely with the resultant loss of thrust. Only then did I pull the prop and delve into the problem.

    I still carry this prop as a spare.

    Torqeedo, broken prop - fixed - 1.jpg

    Jeff

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Both my props look like this, fixed with GFlex. You'd think the Germans would engineer this better. I'm fine with a sheer pin breaking, not so fine with the prop.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Fuller View Post
    Both my props look like this, fixed with GFlex. You'd think the Germans would engineer this better. I'm fine with a sheer pin breaking, not so fine with the prop.
    I can agree with that! I've wondered if a different shear pin would be a good move. But what

    Jeff

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Electric outboard on a trailer sailer

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I’ve never understood the torquedo option from a price standpoint. Maybe it’s a Chevy versus Mercedes thing. The saltwater minkota has been on my mind for a while.

    I think there is a place for solar. Specifically, if you use the boat occasionally and have something like a week between uses. You could always come back to a full charge. Also, I like the idea of a solar panel bimini. We have a lot of sun energy here though.
    It's about ease of installation and convenience, Torqeedo is fully self contained so there's no battery to lug onboard and tie down somewhere and no cables getting in the way.

    Others have mentioned shaft flex and plastic motor mounts in minkotas (granted not all minkotas) torqeedo has metal in all these areas, the leg is much heavier than the trolling motors and the mount is heavily cast alloy, speed control is gradual rather than stepped and unlike trolling motors torqeedo include gps battery monitoring so you know your speed, remaining power and range. This is extremely helpful in ensuring you can get to where you need to be, as we know the slower you go you use exponentially less power.
    If you look at the cost of a good minkota plus a separate lithium battery it would still be cheaper but not by a huge margin and if you add the gps/ power/range computer (and I don't know if one exists) you'd be up around the same value.

    So I guess you're right, it's a Chev versus Merc kind of thing.
    Last edited by Steve TN 15; 08-20-2020 at 08:27 PM.

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