Opinion?: Ample Power

Question:

I have the entire Ample Power set-up on my Tashiba 40 serving three AGM 4D batteries, (house Bank) and one Optima 880 CCA starting battery.  I spent most of the winter installing it myself and the installation turned out perfect.  Never had a failure.  I agree with Bob’s post – This is a very tedious installation.  A little complicated, but detailed and time consuming to do the right way.  As for the regulator failure he mentioned – It seems Ample power got the message on this and they now have a new, whiz bang regulator called the "V3" Be sure to get this one it is much superior to the old "V2".  The new regulator will charge AGM batteries properly as well.  My complaint is that the EMON controller is a little antiquated for this day and age.  It was wonderful five years ago, but today I would like to see a controller I can configure on my laptop and up load to the EMON.  This is strictly in the interest of saving time over pushing buttons to thread through a cascade style menu.  No other monitoring system will give you the amount of data from your electrical system than the Ample power, however you have to be the type of person who understands what it all means. I’m still learning how to digest all this data. Tech support at Ample Power is outstanding and on a personal bases, ( from my experience with them during the install.) This winter I will be adding a wind generator and solar panels and I plan to have them all managed through the Ample power system. Hope this helps Richard Cassano S/V "Gray Eagle" Tashiba 40 Oyster Bay, NY USA

Response:

I am thinking of upgrading my electric system on my 35 foot sailboat.  I have 10-12 year old technology and would like to get it up to 2000 speed.  I have a starter battery, a house bank <4, and windbugger.  I would like to add solar. I have moderate power needs, some electronics, radar and a laptop.  No a/c, power winches ;p, etc. I am intrigued by Ample Powers pitch <www.amplepower.com Any comments?? TIA — Steve Scherrer S/V Mucho Gusto Portland, OR Reply to Flatpick<atteleport<dotcom

Response:

I had the complete Ample Power system installed in my Cal 29 for my offshore trip. The electrical gear on board was a backup starter battery, 3 110 AH gels, an Air Marine wind generator, 110 amp alternator, 1 75 watt solar panel running a NovaCool refrigerator, Pur water maker and all the usual stuff like radio, laptop, GPS. I was very pleased with all the Ample Power stuff with one BIG exception. The instrument was great telling me all sorts of good things  and the system really seemed to sort out the power sources so that I never was short at any time and that was without running the engine for power except once in the conversion zone when I wanted to make water while the boat sloshed around in the calm. The exception was the regulator which failed totally in Tahiti and had to be replaced with a simple automotive one which worked just fine with the Ample system. The failure of mine did not appear to be a freak since I ran into two other boats with the same grief. One, from South Africa, had a professional electrician on board who had tried everything to bring the regulator back to life to no avail. He dangled the useless gadget over the side of his boat offering it for sale "real cheap." Maybe they have improved them or found the problem but the lesson was to carry a spare simple regulator just in case. The installation is quite complicated so unless you are very good at such stuff you might be wise to opt for a professional. In any event it is expensive. I think all totaled with a pro installation I spent about $5500 Canadian (about $3500 US). A good choice if you want the a very sophisticated system and can afford it. Bob D’Arcy "Sinecure" Nonsuch 26 #162 web site: http://mypage.uniserve.com/~sn3112/index.html

– Hide quoted text — Show quoted text – I am thinking of upgrading my electric system on my 35 foot sailboat.  I have 10-12 year old technology and would like to get it up to 2000 speed. I have a starter battery, a house bank <4, and windbugger.  I would like to add solar. I have moderate power needs, some electronics, radar and a laptop.  No a/c, power winches ;p, etc. I am intrigued by Ample Powers pitch <www.amplepower.com Any comments?? TIA — Steve Scherrer S/V Mucho Gusto Portland, OR Reply to Flatpick<atteleport<dotcom

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