When talking to Richard the marine engineer the other week we were discussing charging batteries. His sage advice for older engines is to use a generator and decent multistage charger on the logic servicing generators and ultimately replacing them is a dam sight cheaper than the boat engine.
He did not comment on the respective fuel consumption but I'd guess a little genny is more frugal than a three litre boat engine.
So that bit makes sense - plus you don't get the same noise in the boat while the genny is running on the side - just have to be aware of the neighbours I guess.
One think that is needed of course is a decent charger. I have one on the genny of course but I expect its low amps and is not clever multi stage to get the right volts into the battery at the right time. What a decent charger obviously does do is flex the volts for the best charge, unlike the basic charging system on the (my) boat.
That's all well and good but I do not have a charger on Percy. I have a 20 amp car charger but that does not seem to work off the genny and is basic.
It gets more complicated then if I start thinking about putting one in the boat. As there are inverter charges or just charges. Now I have a 1kw inverter - quite old bit I rarely use it in favour of a little 125 w job that runs the tv and laptop charges as needed and I'm aware running an inverter at low demand to its capacity is inefficient.
Then there is the redundancy aspects - if an inverter charger dies you loose both at the same time and more expensive to replace. However I like the tidiness of an all in one unit.
So what do you have and why?