Diesel Electric Again

Discussion in 'Propulsion' started by DiverDown, Dec 1, 2004.

  1. DiverDown
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: Canada

    DiverDown Junior Member

    I have been very interested in the FEYS system for a while now. I was recently surfing around and found another company,Bugatti Marine(*****************)and after reading for 5 seconds,it all sounded so familiar.They have slightly modified the FEYS site.

    I decided to search on my own,and have found AC vector motors, along with their controllers,ready to be hooked up to a diesel genset.Also similar transmissions as to what FEYS is offering-for a much lower cost.FEYS wants $70k for a "EPS 400".I found a single 400 hp vector is cheaper than the 3X 133 hp vectors used by FEYS.It is all designed for heavy industrial use.

    Have your hull info,what you would like from your vessel,the power and torque curves from the vectors,etc ready and hire a marine engineer to figure out the transmission ratio,gen set size, and calculate the propellor.
    FEYS doesn't really seem to be doing anything (no real new info and no new pix for years now) and I don't begrudge a company having a go,but have they priced themselves out of the market?
  2. Black Swan
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Location: Mission, B.C. Canada

    Black Swan Junior Member

    Well they have certainly priced many of us out of the market, but it's all relative. For the true "do-it-yourselfer" a FEYS system is interesting, and certainly "state of the art" but if you own a boat that's worth $50K, it's out of the question, even if you're looking to re-power.

    There's those of us who bust our knuckles and pull wrenches on our favorite hole in the water, and those whose exercise is gotten from writing cheques and signing credit card slips.

    You could buy an electric car, or you could get involved in one of the many groups worldwide that are breaking the ground and cultivating an entirely new alternative for personal transportation. It's just a matter of what you really want to do.

    I'm kind of a "hands-on" type of guy. It's certainly informative to see the commercially available and well engineered system that FEYS has developed, and they have their place in the global market. However, I wouldn't be able to afford to put their $70K diesel/electric propulsion system in my $50K boat, as much as I might like to. So... where daoes that leave any of us?

    I spent a tremendous amount of time last year looking at all kinds of alternative propulsion systems, and there's tons of information out there. As far as D/E systems, the closest I got to a really do-able project was to search out a local electric vehicle group, and adapt their technological know-how and the products they are using to my needs. Once I got an idea of the overall project and a reasonally good idea of the investment required, bothmoney, time and paid expertise, I moved on to other systems. D/E is a great idea, but right now it's not for me, primarily because it would mean removing all existing systems and replacing them with prototypes of my own design (assisted) with no absolute assurance of practical success. FEYS has already done their homework, at many many levels of engineering, design, modelling, testing, prototyping, etc, etc, etc... Are they worth it? Probably, but just not to me.
  3. DEGuy

    DEGuy Guest

    FEYS and Price

    I work at FEYS. You are correct in that price is our biggest issue. The company has moved away from offering DE systems for pleasure craft because of the issue of price. Even at 70K for an EPS400, we could not make any money. A diesel repower would cost the same, but that is a known item (mostly).

    The problem with traditional electric motors and controllers is weight. Check the weight of a GE 400hp industrial motor, controller and then add in the genset...impossible in a typical pleasure boat.

    FEYS has been doing very nicely in research, development and commercial contracts. We continue to search for cheaper electric components that meet the weight criteria and a few appear to have promise.

  4. maarten221
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: USA

    maarten221 Junior Member

    I've looked at some of the electrical systems out there. It depends on what you want to power. The important thing to remember about electric motors is that HP ratings are useless. They operate on a completely different set of rules.
    Just a basic setup for a person with say a 28' boat requiring around 130HP (this is not based on any specific calculation - just general knowledge from reading up on it a lot over the past year or so)

    Diesel generator +/- $500
    Electric motor (like the ones used in home built electric vehicles +/- $1500
    Controller (again from the home built guys) +/- $2000
    Inverter (from aftermarket EV stores) +/- $1500
    Odds and Ends (cables, pot, etc) +/- $1000

    Now imagine if someone could package this and make it look all pretty and easy to install...
  5. B. Hamm
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: Rockford, IL

    B. Hamm Junior Member

    Diesel generator for $500? ok, where?

    Bill H.
  6. A zero fell off. :( Maybe more
  7. ron17571
    Joined: Jan 2005
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    Location: arizona

    ron17571 Junior Member

    My dad has one of those toyota prius hybrid cars its great and fast,so for around 25000 u could hang the car off the stern and put belts over the tires to a paddlewheel and there u go!Actually i see big diesel generators fairly cheap,to bad i couldnt find some sort of electric drive to make the whole think work to power a boat.
  8. maarten221
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: USA

    maarten221 Junior Member

  9. PowerTech
    Joined: Feb 2005
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    Location: FL,Keys

    PowerTech Senior Member

    Any of you guys recognize that that little air cooled yanmar in front of that generator in the Ebay add.That is the same one MASE uses in there 4.0 marine unit.For those of you that have never seen that thing ,mase belt drives a raw water pump to pump water through a intercooler ,then the engines own fan blows air through the cooler to keep the inside of the hush box cool and the water from there goes out the wet exhaust.It's a wild little thing it's a very tight unit boat builder usualy put them in some POS out board powerd boat under a live well in the very back of the boat with no acces to it and it's soaked with salt.That is the most punished generator I have ever seen people fill them with gas because they forget ,and they never change filters like a diesel should be i geuse because there gas motors filters last longer and are not used to that.The instaler allways put a check valve feul nipple in some god forsaken place that should not be on a diesel. Boat builders :rolleyes:

  10. maarten221
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: USA

    maarten221 Junior Member

    lol Powertech...That's very observant and exceptionally well said!
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