New option for electric propulsion

Moderator: GreenLake

New option for electric propulsion

Postby GreenLake » Tue Sep 12, 2017 3:48 pm

There's a new option for electric propulsion on the market: the Electric Paddle EP250 (sometimes called EP Carry). Unlike their earlier model, the EP250 should have enough oomph to move a DS. They give 18' and 1000lbs as the design limits; the DS would be at the upper end of that.

The nice thing about the Electric paddle is that it is super light weight. The motor unit is lighter than a trolling motor, and the battery is the size of a golf cart battery (but lighter). The expected performance is around what you might get for a 2hp motor, but electric motors have slightly different characteristics; with a DS you might be able to get to 3.3 knots. With the claimed 1hr battery at full rate, the range should be about 3+ miles at the fastest setting; that double at 3/4 speed. (The non-linear effects may be from less friction and/or non-linear battery discharge curves).

For comparison with a 40# trolling motor I get 2.5 knots at full, 1.8 knots at half, and each 80 AmpH battery lasts me 30-40 mins until 50% discharge (safe for deep cycle).

I had a chance to talk to a manufacturer's rep and see one of the first production units, and the claimed facts are from our conversation. The unit is surprisingly light, and the styling is functional. A neat feature is that the tiller-speed control lever, if pulled forward will raise the motor out of the water in one smooth motion. Ideal for days when you might end up motoring between patches of wind, or if you are in situations where you might need to deploy the motor quickly, but don't want to drag it through the water.

The unit gives a sturdy impression; unlike a Torqeedo, nothing comes apart, so it's more like a trolling motor in that respect. The batter is separate and sold with a bag that allows it to float. They compare to the Torqeedo 503 (which is the smallest).

Their trademark design feature is a two bladed prop that looks more like an airplane propeller. They have used that on earlier (smaller) versions that were not suitable for a DS.

My personal use profile (which excludes making long trips entirely under power, but also excludes attempting to use the motor to get out of situations e.g. by powering against strong wind/waves) would be met well with this motor. It would be a definite improvement in convenience - less weight at the transom, less weight overall in the boat, no heavy batteries to lug around, and quicker deployment, esp. when alternating between sail and power. The specs indicate that both top speed and range might improve over my current setup, to the point where that would overcome some marginal aspects of my current setup.

For example, it would look like I should be able to be in range even if I get full flat calm on the return of some of my longer outings. Currently, some of them I can do only if I get wind for at least half the distance (and I mostly do).

Very intriguing; price is an issue, but I'll be taking a hard look.
~ green ~ lake ~ ~
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Re: New option for electric propulsion

Postby BaronDaniels » Fri Oct 06, 2017 4:32 am

Thanks for sharing, GreenLake! I'll be keeping this in mind as well.
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