Thanks for a great thread. I have learned a lot, I am very curious about this same subject.
Since no one has mentioned it, Honda does produce water cooled generators. This is a great one, quiet and fuel miserly. Of course you need to mod it with a sea water heat exchanger but that is easy.
I am working on a catamaran project and due to various issues I may end up having to run gasoline powered outboards so a good gas powered generator is a natural fit.
Oops, Honda changed things, this is the water cooled model.http://www.hayesequipment.com/es6500.htm
I made my own very cheaply. 5 years now and runs every night when Im on board.
I could not get a off the shelf 240V and I dont want 12v, so I ripped apart a second hand window type max draw 750W.
First I made the water tray fit under the seat with a drain to the bilge. This was cut down in size as the condenser will be moved outside, however the is drainage is extremely important. This was a seat backing up to the main bulk head of a 44 foot cat.
I then mounted the compressor and evapoarator and soldered all up. The fan for the condensor was removed oiff the shaft. I extended the switches to just at the side of the outlet and the starters and fuse was places jut under the seat.
Being at the front under the seat was also 2 3 inch pipes leading forward past the 2 front bedrooms up into the chain lockers that was used to supply heavy cables for the winch, I fed 2 copper pipes up there.
I have 4 compartment at the bow of the boat with no trampolene. I cut a round hole in the middle section and mounted a fan blowing through the hole. At the other side in the next compartment I mounted the condenser and fastened all pipes and joined. So one side is cold air and the other is hot air, these are self draining comartments so they are left open
Pumped up with a bicycle pump to check for leaks over night and it was OK. I borrowed a vac pump, pulled it and gassed it.
70 on the low and over 400 on the high. I am concerned about the high but I don't know what else to do. Ive changed the fan but no difference --works fine though.
Im thinking of making another , this time ille move the compressor also to outside to make it whisper quiet. And--maybe not use a window type but a split though still dismantling to get it into the hatch openeing.
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