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Mabru brand Marine Air Conditioners vs. Dometic, MarineAire

Tim Eichel

Member
I am shopping for a new 16,000 BTU AC for my Morgan 383. The 2 most popular brands are Dometic and MarineAire. I just found another company; Mabru. Has anyone heard of them or used their products? They are roughly $1000 more than the other 2 Brands. They have all copper coils and look to be extremely well made. They also have a lifetime compressor warranty. I am looking for my fellow Morgan owners opinion... do you think this is worth spending the extra $1000? See link that highlights their brand vs. Dometic;
Thanks in advance for your comments.
 
I personally wouldn't spend $1000 on A/C, so I wouldn't spend $1000 more for a particularly good unit. I am currently using an 6000btu portable unit and it works well enough for me at about $300. I did find the sales pitch interesting though.

Are you replacing an old unit, or installing new? I think the question is how well the Dometic works for people. If it cools well and lasts a reasonably long time, then I see no reason to pay more. If they suffer early failures, and those failures are related to something discussed and improved on, then maybe it might be worth it.
 

Tim Eichel

Member
Thanks Warren! This would be an all new install. I also have a small 6000 btu that I mount in the companion way...it cools great but I cant leave it on when I am not there as someone could walk into the boat and take whatever is there.....no way to lock it. I want the AC for both for cooling and dehumidifying. It's very hot and HUMID here in Florida. The MarineAire actually looks better to me than the Dometic. Maybe someone here has had one of these or both? I agree with you that another $1000 is a lot to pay unless it is a substantially better product. Thanks for your input!
 
Where are you installing the unit? I am on the Chesapeake bay and want to put one in but am running out of places to install the unit. Any suggestions? already used the port settee for a new holding tank. Was considering the starboard side but would have to sacrifice the water tank to do that,
 
Spaces I am exploring for adding new toys. The port side sail locker (should) have a wooden shelf in it. I have recently realized that there is a pretty large space under that shelf. I am planning a large battery bank there. There is also a lot of space to the starboard side of the helm locker, where the main shore power circuit breaker it. A smaller but useable space behind the hot water heater. That space is seems perfect for a compressor for the fridge.
 

datswite

Ken Ferrari
Spaces I am exploring for adding new toys. The port side sail locker (should) have a wooden shelf in it. I have recently realized that there is a pretty large space under that shelf. I am planning a large battery bank there. There is also a lot of space to the starboard side of the helm locker, where the main shore power circuit breaker it. A smaller but useable space behind the hot water heater. That space is seems perfect for a compressor for the fridge.
Yes, there is a lot of space below the shelf in the sail locker. I installed my refrigeration compressor and my engine start battery underneath that shelf. And there is still room to spare. In the original battery compartment I have a single house bank comprised of 4 Trojan T105 golf cart batteries.
 
Yes, there is a lot of space below the shelf in the sail locker. I installed my refrigeration compressor and my engine start battery underneath that shelf. And there is still room to spare. In the original battery compartment I have a single house bank comprised of 4 Trojan T105 golf cart batteries.
By chance do you have pictures of the battery bank under the quarterbirth? I currently have 2 group 31's, and a group 24 for starting. I'm not sure if there is even enough room to change the group 24 for another group 31. But I also have other electronics in there. I am thinking of 3 or 4 100Ah lithium's under the shelf on the port side.
 

datswite

Ken Ferrari
By chance do you have pictures of the battery bank under the quarterbirth? I currently have 2 group 31's, and a group 24 for starting. I'm not sure if there is even enough room to change the group 24 for another group 31. But I also have other electronics in there. I am thinking of 3 or 4 100Ah lithium's under the shelf on the port side.
Unfortunately, I do not have a photo. However, here is a sketch of how the batteries are laid out in the compartment (obviously not to scale). The light grey box around the batteries represents the original opening. The green oval represents a heater blower. Four T-105 batteries configured into one 12-volt bank represents 450 AH (20 hr). We charge with 340 watts of solar (split between two rigid panels, one on top of the dodger and the other on top of the bimini). The engine start battery is charged with a Xantrex Echo Charge. We also have an Electromaax 165-amp alternator driven by a serpentine belt from our Perkins. We have a keel-cooler Frigoboat refrigerator, no freezer. No other heavy draw devices aboard - laptops/tablets, aside.

We NEVER have to run our engine to charge our batteries - even on our ocean crossing. Monitor windvane to steer. LED nav lights. From 40 degrees north to 10 degrees north - Baltimore to Grenada. We had flexible panels, but their output dropped from the plastic getting hazy (they lasted about 1 year). I like the idea of converting to lithium batteries for a lot of reasons, but, frankly, they'd be a waste of money for us because we simply don't need them.

Our typical state of charge in the mornings while in the tropics was about 70-75%. Rarely do we drop below that. We did get down to about 60% on our Atlantic crossing after several days of rain and squalls (while travelling NNE and heeling to the west, i.e. very little direct sunlight on the panels) but quickly remedied itself when the sun came out again.

battery layout.png
 
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