ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus: New User Initiation

ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus: New User Initiation

We put together this video to show our customers some of the features of the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus as well as some information on how to use and maintain the electric outboard. Please take a look at our video on the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus below. We've provided the transcript below the video as well, with some edits for readability.


Purchase the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus

Register your ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus

ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus User Manual

How to find your ePropulsion shaft length

Video Transcript:

This is Luke from Emo Electric. We're here today to talk about ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus, which is their 3hp electric outboard. We've got the shaft right here and the battery right here. We're making this video because when somebody buys this motor and picks up in person, we usually spend about 10-15 minutes in the shop here going over some features, some benefits, how to use it and how to maintain it properly, and we want our online customers to have that same information. So before we get into how to use it and how to maintain it, first just a few benefits. Why would you buy the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus in the first place? It's more expensive than a gas outboard but it has a lot of great benefits that gas does not.

First of all, in the maintenance department a lot of people claim that electric outboards are maintenance-free, which is not true. Electric outboards do require some maintenance but compared to a gas outboard, it's very little. We'll get more into all of that later but in short, there's no dealing with gas, there's no oil changes, no spark plugs, no oil that could spill out of the side when the motor is on its side, and it just makes for a better user experience. You can spend more time on the water, less time maintaining your equipment. Not only is there very little maintenance for the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus, but these motors are virtually silent. If you were to turn it on right here you would be able to hear a little bit of noise coming from the motor, but this is a direct drive electric outboard, so the motor is right here in front of the prop. So once that's in the water any sound that comes from it is drowned out and muffled by the water, so all you hear is the water slapping up against the side of your hull. A few things that ePropulsion has done that we really like is that they've made a battery that floats. So you can drop this in the water pick it right back out and you're good to go. It's not sinking down to the bottom of the bay. We also really like that there are caps for the power cable or power port and the charging port of the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus.

There's also a cap for the end of your power cable coming off your electric outboard, which is really important when you're using these in a saltwater environment. Keep those caps closed to keep those contacts clean! Another reason we love the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus is it's lightweight. So together shaft and the battery weigh about 42 pounds (depending on the shaft length could be slightly more or less,) but you're never handling the whole thing together. So the shaft is 23 pounds, battery is 19, you pop the shaft onto your transom and then you place the battery on. So you're never lifting 42 pounds at once, hanging over the stern of your boat.

The question we probably get asked most frequently is well how long does the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus last? What's the run time of the Spirit 1.0 Plus? Well, with the standard battery here, you get about one hour and 15 minutes in relatively calm conditions at full power. At half power you get about two and a half hours with the standard Spirit battery. The speed difference between full power and half power is not 50%. On my sailboat I do about five knots or five and a half at full power, and if I go down to half power, I'll do four or four and a half knots. Most people find a happy medium where they're still doing a good speed and have a run time of about two hours.

When you open up the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus box you'll have a few things in front of you. You have your shaft, which includes the built-in tiller, you have your Spirit battery, you also have your standard charger so this just plugs into a regular wall outlet, you'll have the bag with your user manual locking pins and safety lanyards, and if you purchase the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus from us, you'll have this handy little sheet that goes over some highlights from the user manual and some of the things that we're talking about today. The ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus (and ePropulsion Spirit Evo) both come with a prop and zinc anodes preinstalled. Some people like to buy a Spirit prop or Spirit anodes to have as extras, but you don't need to buy them right away because they are pre-installed. You have your power cable that comes out of the motor here and that will plug right into your Spirit battery once you put your battery on top of the shaft. The other port on your battery is your charging port. When you go to charge just take this plug it right in and then plug the other end into your wall outlet.

We highly recommend that you not only watch this video but you read your user manual, which is in here as well as the ePropulsion safety lanyards. These are magnetic they'll go right there. If you're not sure why your electric outboard is not working, it's always a good idea to make sure that you haven't forgotten about the safety lanyard. The locking pin will go right in here and that locks your motor straight, which is a really nice feature for sailors.

Once you've taken everything out of the box and you're getting ready to use your motor for the first time there are two things that you should do first, one of which is registering your product on the ePropulsion website. Doing so will give you a whole extra year of warranty coverage, so you get two years of warranty no matter what, and if you register your product with ePropulsion you get a third year. All you'll need is the receipt from us and to give them your basic information. Once your ePropulsion product is registered, you'll need to charge your battery. ePropulsion recommends that you charge up to 100 percent. You also need to wake it up from deep sleep mode, where it likely is when you get it. Deep sleep mode is a function that prevents the battery from self-discharging quickly. All lithium batteries will slowly lose their charge if they're just sitting and not being used. What ePropulsion has done is put in this deep sleep mode that the battery enters once it gets down to 60 percent and hasn't been used for a while. Once it goes into that deep sleep mode it'll still self-discharging, but much much more slowly than usual. When the Spirit Battery is in deep sleep mode it won't work when you plug it into your motor. You have to wake it up first, which you can do by plugging the Spirit Battery into the charger.

So you've registered your ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus and you've charged your battery to 100%! Then you're going to take your Spirit 1.0 Plus shaft and mount it on the stern of your boat. We're going to flip open our tiller here since it doesn't open up in the tank. Once you've placed your ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus electric outboard on your transom, you'll tighten up these locking bolts. You don't have to make them as tight as you can but you want them to be secure, and to make sure that your electric outboard is centered on your transom. Then we'll grab our Spirit battery. The first couple times you do this you might not get it on there perfectly the first try. You just have to line up these two pieces of metal with the gaps in the Spirit battery. It's a little bit awkward the first couple times you do it but after a few tries it'll pop on nice and easy every time. Then we're going to take our power data cable and plug it to the Spirit Battery. There's a little indent on the Spirit Battery which matches a little piece on the cable. You don't want to push and twist because you can bend these pins, you want to line those two up let it slide right in, and then tighten that up and you're good to go! Then you have to grab your safety lanyard it. The ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus will power up without the safety lanyard but it won't that won't go into gear.

Then you can power up your ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus and you're ready to go! Your tiller has forward and reverse, so you don't have to spin the electric outboard around to use reverse like you have to with a lot of gas outboards. You'll have your screen right here, which will give you run time, range estimates, and how much power you're using. The ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus is a one kilowatt motor, and it'll give you your power output in watts. Full throttle is a 1000 watts and half throttle is 500 watts.

One great feature to be aware of is the Spirit 1.0 Plus anti-grounding mode. Right now this motor is locked down, you can't raise it up. If you want to raise it up you'll push this lever up

and then raise the electric outboard by pulling on the handle on the battery. We can't do it because we're in the tank here, but on your boat, you can raise the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus up all the way out of the water. If you're going to be operating somewhere where it's shallow and you're worried about hitting the bottom you can put the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus into anti-grounding mode. If you come over here you see there's this little pin here. Pull it out with one hand and then lift that other lever on the other side with your other hand. Release the pin, and now it's an anti-grounding mode, so if you were to hit something, the electric outboard would come up a little bit. The Spirit 1.0 Plus will also come up if you go into reverse, so make sure that you've taken the motor out of anti-grounding mode by pulling that pin out if you're going to use reverse.

As we mentioned earlier, there's very little maintenance involved with owning an electric outboard, especially compared to a gas outboard. But there are still are a few things that you have to do in order to take care of the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus to ensure that your electric outboard and Spirit Battery lasts as long as possible. One of the the most important things for those of you who are using the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus in salt water is to rinse it with fresh water after every use. Make sure to rinse everything that was under water, but you can spray the whole thing off since everything is sealed. Not only do you want to rinse the outside but you should to turn the shaft 90 degrees and actually spray some water down the holes on the top of the shaft. I couldn't tell you why, but the shaft is hollow. For those of you who are curious, Torqeedo's shaft is the same way. It fills up with water once it's down and if you don't rinse out those holes you'll see a little bit of salt buildup on the top of the pod. So just spray a little bit of water in there, you don't have to go crazy, just enough to rinse the salt out.

Keeping the electrical contacts clean is probably the next most important thing. You'll see that there are caps for all of the contacts on the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus. Make sure that you use these caps even if these aren't getting wet; just being around salt water and the salt there can lead to corrosion. About once a month in season you can spray just a little bit of WD-40 in here. You can also use contact cleaner. If you do notice some oxidation on these pins or in this port here, take some contact cleaner a toothbrush and very carefully try and work that oxidation off, but be careful not to bend the smaller pins in here.

For the Spirit battery, there's not much in the way of maintenance, but there are a number of things that you can do in order to ensure that the Spirit Battery lasts as long as possible. In terms of safety and the battery, a common question we get is "what about fires? All of those electric bikes in NYC are catching on fire!"We want to address that head-on. The Spirit Battery is a high quality battery with an internal battery management system that has a lot of great safety features. Usually when there are lithium battery fires, it's because the battery is poor quality to begin with, it wasn't being charged with the charger it was designed to be used with, or the battery has been physically damaged. If you drop your Spirit battery and it splits open, cracks, or even if you just drop it and you're concerned about it bring, it into your ePropulsion dealer. They can take a look at your Spirit Battery and let you know if it's safe to use, if it needs to be repaired, or if it needs to be replaced.

When you charge the Spirit Battery, keep in mind that the charger can get hot. Don't leave it next to anything that's flammable. ePropulsion also recommends that you don't leave it unattended charging, so don't put it in your garage and go out for 10 hours. It's always safer to be around the battery when it's charging.

There are few things that you can do to ensure that your ePropulsion Spirit battery has as long of a lifespan as possible. All lithium batteries do degrade over time, so each year you'll lose a few percent of your original battery capacity. The exact loss depends on how much your use ePropulsion Spirit battery and if you maintain it properly.

During normal operation, it's best to avoid running the battery down below 20%. If that happens every once in a while it's not a big deal, but your standard practice should be that once your ePropulsion Spirit Battery gets close to 20%, you should to charge your battery. You also want to avoid charging your battery after only using about 20%. So if you're at 90%, 80%, or %70 and then you charge it up again, it's not great for the longevity of the ePropulsion Spirit battery. Try to get in the habit of charging the ePropulsion Spirit Battery when it's below 50% but above 20%, more or less.

Once you're done using your ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus for the season, you don't have to winterize it like a traditional gas outboard, but there are a few things that you need to do in order to store your electric outboard properly for the winter. First, give it a good rinse let it dry out. Then spray the electrical contacts with WD40 one more time. You can also use contact cleaner or put a very small amount of dielectric grease on the contacts. For the ePropulsion Spirit battery, you want to make sure that it's above 60% state of charge before you store it, so the Spirit battery discharges, it hits that 60% mark and goes into the deep sleep mode. If the Spirit 1.0 Plus battery is below 60%, just charge it up slightly above 60%. You don't have to charge it to 100%. ePropulsion also recommends storing the Spirit battery in a dry place with an ambient temperature of 59 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit. The most important part here is that you're not storing the ePropulsion Spirit battery in a freezing temperature. So make sure it's somewhere that's not going to freeze over the winter, and store it somewhere where it's protected and dry. I wouldn't leave it in your shrink wrapped boat; put in a closet inside, somewhere where it's protected and you can access the ePropulsion Spirit battery easily.

There are a number of great accessories for the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 plus, one of which is the Spirit bag set. It includes a nice little backpack bag that the battery fits in, and then the shaft and the tiller fit in another bag. Most of our customers end up buying the Spirit bag set. I didn't think I needed them when I first got this motor for my sailboat, but after it was rolling around the bottom of the boat for one sail, I came back and decided I needed a Spirit bag set. You can throw your electric outboard in the bag set into your truck or put them in a hold in your sailboat, and you just don't have to worry about scratching up your electric outboard.

Another accessory for the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus that we highly recommend purchasing is a spare Spirit prop. If you purchase the Spirit prop from us, it will come with two extra shear pins as well as the prop.

The Spirit propeller is made of plastic and has a shear pin inside. The idea is in the event of a grounding, we want either the Spirit prop or the shear pin to break before the motor gets damaged. If you buy an extra Spirit prop, you're only off the water for about 10 minutes in the event of a broken prop or shear pin. If you don't buy an extra prop, then you have to wait to order one, come drive over to us, or wait for one to get shipped to you. If the shear pin breaks you'd see it broken if you remove your Spirit prop. The prop comes right off the bottom of your motor with an Allen key.

A good indicator your shear pin is broken is that the motor doesn't seem to have enough power at full speed. What's happening is at low power everything's working fine; friction is holding the prop on and preventing it from spinning freely. But once there's more load on it, the prop starts to slip on the shaft and you don't get full power. So if that's happening you probably have a broken shear pin. In order to replace the shear pin or prop, you'll need to remove the Spirit propeller with an Allen key. Simply unscrew the fastener, take off the zinc anode, then pull off the prop.

There zinc anodes on the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus. These aren't unique to electric outboards, they're the same type of anodes used on gas outboards. Once there is visible pitting on them, it's time to replace them. Just keep an eye on them. There's one behind the prop, a couple up in the bracket. As long as this motor is not sitting in the water all the time, which it probably isn't, you should get years out of your zincs.

The other things on the table here are different charger options. The ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus comes with your standard AC 110v charger. That charger takes about eight and a half hours to go from 0% to 100%. Keep in mind, you're usually not charging from 0%. For most customers, overnight charging is fast enough. But if you need to charge the battery more quickly, you can get the Spirit fast charger, which is also 110v AC and plugs into a regular wall outlet, but it knocks down your charge time from eight and a half hours to three and a half hours from zero to full.

ePropulsion also makes a 12 volt DC charger for the Spirit 1.0 Plus. This can plug into a cigarette lighter, or you can use this adapter and these alligator clips to attach it to a 12 volt battery. It does take quite a long time to charge, but if you're a cruising sailor, it might be a nice option to have. The other charging option is the Spirit solar charge controller. It can work with most solar panels. It's a 10 amp charge controller, so you'll need about 180 watt panel. This is great for sailors who have their boats out on a mooring, especially if you're only using your boat over the weekend. You hook the charge controller to your Spirit Battery, and you're good to go. So if you're using your boat over the weekend, leave the boat for a couple of days. As long as you get some sun, your Spirit battery should be charged back up. Now, if you're worried about range, you can also buy a second Spirit battery. But before you spend money on a fast charger or a second battery, I always recommend that you just try it out for a couple of weeks. Whenever I've had customers who think they might need a second battery, usually they do that, and they call me back and they say, "hey, one battery is plenty for me!"

If you have any questions on the ePropulsion Spirit 1.0 Plus or its accessories, or anything we talked about in this video, feel free to leave a comment. We'll link the web store page to buy this motor as well as the form to register your motor. And happy electric boating! Thanks for watching.

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