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Duffy Electric boats....?

Discussion in 'Tenders & Dinghies' started by Norseman, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Got myself a Duffy last week, a used 2006 and heavily modified by previous owner: Spent quite a few hours "Un-Red Necking" my Duffy, it was used for a Bass fishing boat on the lakes before. (Probably a good idea, quiet running won't scare no fishes.:D)

    So, got questions and could not find any Duffy Forum or Bulleting Board on the 'Net.
    Does anybody around here have a Duffy?
    Source for used parts, if any? (Tried ebay, not much)
    Supposedly 10,000 of these things have been sold since the 1970s.
    No support or shop in Fort Lauderdale (or Miami).

    [​IMG]
  2. RER

    RER Senior Member

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    Probably 90% of them are in southern California and most of those are in Newport Beach where Duffy began and where their sales office is. They are built now in Adelanto CA, around the corner from the old CABO factory. You're probably only going to find support directly through Duffy.
  3. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Yeah, afraid so. The Duffy factory wants $1,600 for the motor "controller". Now searching for same unit from Electric Forklift and Golf Cart places.
    It should be less than half that.

    There is a few derelict Duffs on the various canals in Fort Lauderdale, with no support or local techs, they seem to Rot away as soon something goes wrong.:(

    At any rate, for my use it should be the perfect boat: I never go fast and I never go far, just a few hours on the New River every day and the solar panels should make it a free ride, if there is such a thing...:D
  4. Fishtigua

    Fishtigua Senior Member

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    The Antigua Yacht Club has had a Duffy electric boat as a tender for almost 15 years. It's gone through a few sets of batteries over the years, but was still going last time I looked.
  5. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    They look very enticing to me, the more I look at them. I'm sure you've already checked but I'll toss it out anyway. The Stuart dealer also has rentals. I don't know if he's an independent of factory owned dealer. But someone there could know if there are any other resources. He's got to be doing something to just maintain his own boats.
  6. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Yeah, he is on my radar, but having lived in the Yachting Capital of the world, Fort Lauderdale, for 15 years I have a feeling of entitlement, everybody in boats should be right here...:D
  7. SeaEric

    SeaEric YF Historian

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    I think the Duffy is likely the perfect cocktail cruiser for the New River. BUT - Does it have enough power to run against the running tide? I like the idea of no petroleum fuel related issues for a boat that only gets used seasonally, like I would use it.
  8. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Not there yet, still looking for a black box to get my Duffy to run.

    If the strongest current in the River is 3 knots, and if the Duffy will go at 6 knots, I should be ok, albeit slow..:D
  9. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Just mount an outboard on the back. You should be able to get one for less than $1600. :D hehehe
  10. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    What about replacing a very expensive bank of bad batteries?
  11. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    8 Golf Cart batteries, I get them at whole sale prices, around $90 each.
    Expensive yes, but they will last 5-6 years if one does no go below 50% discharge.
    Had the same batteries for "house bank" on my sailboat and they lasted over 6 years.
    So, $11 per month for batteries, still beats gas..:cool:
  12. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Very true. Where you live is a great location for that boat. You can do the entire loop (across and down the dania cutoff), etc etc......
  13. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Bingo...:cool:

    Come for a Duffy Ride b
  14. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Updated Picture

    [​IMG]

    She is coming along...I suppose :cool:
  15. Old Phart

    Old Phart Senior Member

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    I dunno
    Is still she a dock queen, or have you found a means of propulsion?

    Since you already have good batteries, how about one of these?

    Minn Kota Motors
  16. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Personally I'd just rip the electric stuff out and find a nice 10hp or so diesel (whatever will push the thing hull speed at cruise rpms)......but that's just me.....
  17. Old Phart

    Old Phart Senior Member

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    I dunno
    Perhaps he owns an electric boat to escape the smell and banging and clanging. :D
  18. HTMO9

    HTMO9 Senior Member

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    Little Diesel engine

    If you really like the smell, bang and clang, this would be your engine. 140 lbs total system weight, enough power for the Duffy and it will outlast your grandchildren. Farymann single cylinder marine diesel engine. You can leave the electric starter out, it can be handcranked. A nasty little piston shaker but runs on 2 Gal of diesel 8 hours long at cruise RPM. And for hardcore diesel fans, there is an air cooled version with even more noise :D.

    Attached Files:

  19. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    True, but they're very anemic. They only do 5 knots-5.5 knots depending on the length and proper cruising speed is 4.5 knots otherwise your range is really cut in 1/3. I'd take a diesel, with good soundproofing and a good muffler anyday but everyone is different.
  20. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Nah, it would make no sense. The boat was built from scratch for electric propulsion and to rip out $5K worth of motor, controller, batteries, charger, meters etc to replace with $6K worth of diesel engine, tank, filters, plumping, etc would be Loco to say the least...:D

    The electric boat's problem right now is the trouble shooting: Every time I go to idle, it stops, as in loosing the connection, throttle will no longer respond to nothing..:rolleyes: Have to reset the "Ignition" key to get power back.
    Had the controller sent off to North Carolina to be tested, had the rheostat in the throttle (actuator) replaced, new ignition "key/system", new primary solenoid (contactor), still the same.
    (Gets interesting docking the boat when it is dead as a doornail and interesting the first time, but when it is expected it only becomes a pain in the butt..)

    Sent of the whole system to California to be tested with all the components to "together" as each piece checks out.:rolleyes:
    Nobody in Florida can work on the boat..THAT is the pain in the arse, no local support.
    When it is running it goes good, cheap to operate, quiet, comfy and a Green Machine.
    48 Volt system probably gives 6 knots at full power, but not sure, will bring a GPS when all the components are back in and talking to each other..:cool:

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