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Bow thruster power source


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At the end of this season I am having the boat lifted out to have a bowthruster installed, now my question is would it be ok to have the power source for it from my starter battery rather than adding another dedicated battery, as they do use a quick hi amp draw rather like starting the engine? So surely this would suit the starter battery just fine and it's not like it's in use often??

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Jim,

I don't know it this is the correct answer, but I would think that whilst the bow thruster is running, it is very likely to draw much more than the alternator can supply and therefore be draining the battery. As the bow thruster is more likely to be used when you are coming in to moor, and then shortly turning the engine off, this is likely to lead to the engine battery being left not fully charged. I would always protect the engine battery at all costs, as once you have the engine started, you can normally recharge any other batteries. So my advice would be to seriousely consider placing the bow thruster on another battery or it's own battery.

It may well be best to talk to JPC at Wroxham, they seem to sell and fit a lot of bow thrusters.

Keith

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Most builders fit a dedicated battery, ours has two small easy to move ones in parallel, it can help with reducing the heavy cable run and means you are not sapping power from another source or experiencing voltage drop over a long run, as you would be running the engine any time it was required it would give a little top up when parking or a bigger one if using it to leave a parking space so flat batteries is not really the issue. My feeling is that the probable cost savings due to reduced length of heavy cable and being able to use slightly lighter cable due to the reduced length of run and lower labour costs of routing it would likely outweigh the cost of the extra battery and it therefore makes sense to do it that way. Edited to reinforce and agree with Keith's view, protect your starter battery at all costs.

I'm not even sure if ours works as I've never used it :liar:liar

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Thanks so much for all the replies, I can see this is going to take a bit of thinking about as the thruster will be about 7 metres away from the battery bank :(

That's a cable run of about 40 feet then, in order to get the voltage drop within reason, the size and quality of the cable plus routing it would probably come at the cost of a couple of decent batteries, not one :o:o

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David, are you saying it would be better to have a battery up front and run the charging leads forwards to it?? I suppose there will be room under the front bunks for it all but what about the hydrogen gas produced while charging.

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Wherever the battery is mounted it will need to be properly vented for safety, I would be looking to get the battery as close as practicable rather than as close as possible, the charge leads will of course be much lighter and easier to route and a fraction of the cost. Is this a DIY project of are you commissioning somebody? if so I would be inclined to leave the decision to them, JPC have been mentioned in relation to BTs before and I can at least speak for the quality of work at their Lowestoft workshop.

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No it's not a DIY job! Can you imagine! Me with the jigsaw standing at the side of my hull :o Hipperson's are going to do it thank god, but im one of these that likes a picture in my mind as to what will go where etc.

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No it's not a DIY job! Can you imagine! Me with the jigsaw standing at the side of my hull :o Hipperson's are going to do it thank god, but im one of these that likes a picture in my mind as to what will go where etc.

Quite right Jim, if you have an idea what should be happening it at least allows you to speak to them with some idea and perhaps get a better or at least more suited job in the end. :-D

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No it's not a DIY job! Can you imagine! Me with the jigsaw standing at the side of my hull :o Hipperson's are going to do it thank god, but im one of these that likes a picture in my mind as to what will go where etc.

Jim how about doing a few sketches to show them what your hoping it to look like then they have a good idea before they start

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