A generator will give you an onboard opportunity to charge your batteries or supply AC current to the 240-volt ring main. It generally takes its diesel fuel from a red diesel tank; in most countries, this fuel is much cheaper than white diesel.
Many marinas are banning boats from running their generators whilst alongside unless an exhaust muffler is fitted to quieten the exhaust noise. Maintenance is similar to any Diesel engine and should keep a set of spare filters and a quantity of oil onboard ready for an oil change etc. When the generator is running, check the raw water filter every 2 hours, in locations of heavy weed every hour.
The winch draws its 12 or 24-volt power from the main DC system switched on at the panel. From the panel, control can be a rocker switch on the helm, a foot switch on the deck beside the winch, or a handheld control box.
In the early 1900's Cameroon Waterman, an American, designed an outboard motor based on the motor bike engine. A few years later, Ole Evinrude, a Norwegian/American, invented an outboard; the 'Evinrude Outboard' became one of the most popular outboards in America, marketed today as a global brand.
Modern Outboard Motors
Modern outboard motors are either two or 4-stroke, traditionally using a carburettor to supply fuel mix to the cylinder. These models are being phased out to comply with new emission regulations for cleaner and more efficient fuel injection systems.
Outboard Engine Maintenance
Imardex Marine has designed a comprehensive maintenance programme to be followed by owners of outboard motors, and this maintenance programme covers all the mechanical work to keep the engine in a seaworthy condition. It does not include tasks where rebuilding is required. The programme is easy to use and access. Task schedules can be set to periods alongside allocated for maintenance.
Bow & Stern Thruster
Bow & Stern Thrusters can be electrically or hydraulically driven.
The main engine hydraulic pump is the driving source for the hydraulic Bow and Stern Thrusters.
The hydraulic control valve of 12 or 24 volts (to change direction of the thruster) is generally situated close to the hydraulic tank. Remember to switch this on and check operation using the helm control.
The thruster oil supply pot (if fitted) is situated close to the thruster; most thrusters today have integral oil systems that don't need topping up; check your manual.
A battery is usually situated beside the thrusters if the Bow and Stern Thrusters are electric. More common now, the power comes from the domestic battery bank.
There are two types of steering systems: Hydraulic as below and the non-hydraulic.
The hydraulic steering system is independent, with the pump, part of the steering wheel hub. Hydraulic lines go from the boat's steering position(s) to the hydraulic ram connected to the rudder stock. To check the oil level in the system, unscrew the vent cap above the pump, and the level should be visible if not, put a little oil in, not too much, as the oil in the system expands as it warms up and is forced out of the vent, dripping onto the deck.
Other non-hydraulic steering systems are Chain, Cable, Rack and Pinion, to name but a few.