Small boat electrical power

Discussion in 'Boat Modification Journal' started by Old Bill, Sep 9, 2007.

  1. Old Bill

    Old Bill New Member

    Messages:
    448
    State:
    Oklahoma City
    If you are a catfish fisherman who uses a small boat, with a non-charging outboard, and who wants a small easy to carry, and easy to recharge battery for fishfinders, charging cell-phones, GPS's, etc, and limited navigtion lights use, you might want to check out the many Emergency Jump-Starter Batteries on the market. They range in price from $19.00 to $82.00.

    I guess you could use a trolling motor for a few minutes in an emergency, but most Jump-Starter batteries wouldn't last very long.

    I don't have any photos yet of the Jump Starter that I installed in my 14' aluminum fishing boat, but here are two photos that I used in a article about electrical power for small boats that was published in the Small Craft Advisor, a sailboat magazine.

    As taken out of the box:
    http://oomur.pair.com/wwpotter/images/Jumpstarter 1S.jpg

    And installed in a small sailboat:

    http://oomur.pair.com/wwpotter/images/Jumpstarter 3S.jpg

    As you could see in the above photo a 12-volt female auto socket is provided on the Jump Starter for a 12-volt male power cord to be inserted.

    I found that I could operate a fishfinder and cell-phone for 8 to 10 hours before the green fully charged light, on the Jump Starter, went out, and the medium charged light came on. At that point the 7-amp battery was 50% discharged, showing a reading of 12.06 to 12.10 volts.

    Navigation lights, as you know, take a lot more electrical power than fishfinders. In two different tests I found that the Jump Starter 7-amp battery would run my navigation lights for only 2 hours 15 minutes before the battery was 50% discharged. The light were still bright and I believe would have been viewable for maybe 30 minutes more.

    I do most of my fishing when I'm camped at lake side campsites. So the Jump Starter battery is easy to carry from the boat to my campsite for recharging. Only real drawback is the small battery charger that comes with the battery will only charge the Jump starter at a 300mA rate. Resulting in a charge time of 8 to 10 hours to bring the battery to a fully charged state of 13.10 volts...if the battery was 50% discharged.

    Of course, a full size deep cycle battery provides much more useable volts. If you have a way to easily recharge such a heavy battery, then that is the way to go. Or if you use a trolling motor, you really don't have a choice.

    But, if not...then a Jump Starter battery is something to consider.

    Old Bill
     
  2. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    Bill I keep one of those on my pontoon for emergency lighting or what ever I may need it for. I am toying with the idea to use it to power two led lights for under the top for night fishing. Just got to figure out which lights will work best for me.
    Good post though.
     

  3. Old Bill

    Old Bill New Member

    Messages:
    448
    State:
    Oklahoma City
    Hi Bubbakat,

    I don't know how much light you need or want, but you might consider a simple stick on LED light you can buy at Lowes and other places.

    For around $10.00, you can pick up a 3-led light by Sylvania called "Dot-It" They come with 3 AA batteries already installed and a removable adhesive on the back side that is reusable. These work great on a boat and the batteries last for 40-50 hours. Here's the link for more information

    http://store.sylvania.com/display_items.cfm?pc=DOT&CFID=17967&CFTOKEN=98506729.

    No...I don't own any Sylvania stock!!:wink:

    Old Bill
     
  4. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    Bill thanks for the heads up on the lights, Around three of those would do just what I need. If they last that long it would last 3 or 4 nights fishing because I wouldn't burn all of them all night. Thanks.
     
  5. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    I have that same unit but I bought the biggest they had. Its 800 amps I think.
    I wouldnt leave shore without one. They are too cheap not to have one.

    Mine hasnt beem charge in over a year. This year its started the tractor, and car twice.