Nigel Calder’s Integrel, Part 2—Is It Really Better Than a Generator?

In Part 1 of our review of Nigel Calder's Integrel machine, we dug into how it works, why it's innovative, my worries about reliability, and why it is neither fault tolerant nor easily repairable in the field.

And, finally, we concluded that it was too expensive and complicated to be of use to cruisers who have reasonably modest daily power needs. But what about those of us who want all the comforts of home and therefore use a lot of power in the run of a day, or even those with one foot in each camp? Up until now, the only realistic way to achieve that was by fitting a separate generator. Yes, I know some cruisers are harvesting huge amounts of power using renewables, but, although I think that can be done on motorboats with plenty of deck space and little shading, doing this on sailboats results in un-seamanlike clutter and windage. Yea, I know, that's not a popular view, but when did that ever stop me? So before you go any further into this chapter, you may want to take our simple test to see if you even need a generator, or Nigel's Integrel machine.
Also, those of us who have an even tiny bit of lust for all the comforts of home, as promoted by Triskel Marine, Nigel and Paul Shard, should read on, since we will cover what that's really going to cost us, in complication, aggravation, and money, with Integrel or a stand alone generator.
OK, still with luster after all the comforts of home, you?  Let's shine the bright light of arithmetic rigour and analytical thinking on this thing.

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John was born and brought up in Bermuda and started sailing as a child, racing locally and offshore before turning to cruising. He has sailed over 100,000 miles, most of it on his McCurdy & Rhodes 56, Morgan's Cloud, including eight ocean races to Bermuda, culminating in winning his class twice in the Newport Bermuda Race. He has skippered a series of voyages in the North Atlantic, the majority of which have been to the high latitudes. John has been helping others go voyaging by sharing his experience for twenty years, first in yachting magazines and, for the last 18 years, as co-editor/publisher of AAC.

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