Frequently Asked Questions
All answers have been provided by the designer of the LEAR 204, Terry Baylor.
How is this boat better or different than other electric boats?The Lear Baylor "E-Hull" is designed specifically to be an electric boat, not an adaptation of an old design by adding an electric motor. The hull is stable and is most efficient at up to six MPH.
Why does the boat make such a small bow wave and minimal wake?The Lear 204 has no bow wave and produces very little wake.
The concept of no bow wave and minimal wake wasn't a consideration when I set out to make this boat 9 years ago. The goal, from the beginning, has been to develop the most efficient design possible and have the stability and comfort that other electric boats don't have. it would be a terrible waste of time just to have another electric boat out there with no significant improvement.
In the past 5 years it has been recognized that bow wave and wake are damaging to the shoreline in estuaries and lakes across the country.
The no bow wave and minimal wake are just side effects of our efficient hull design. The best I was hoping for was more time on the water and a stable, safe boat for our families to have fun on.
Our hull has a fine entry like many racing sailboats. This offers the least resistance. The widest part of this hull (the center of bouyancy) is 66% aft of the entry along the length of the waterline. This means that when the hull is pushed through the water. there are no abrupt changes in the water flow to slow it down.
At this point I needed to decide whether to have a fast boat or a stable boat. Knowing that these boats were going to be operated in an environment with a speed limit of 5 miles per hour - it was a "no brainer".
I increased the beam (width) and decreased the depth (draft) of the hull in order to get the stability and space that make this boat so comfortable.
Adding a long low-resistant keel to allow the boat to track with no noticeable leeway (side slip) was the easiest and logical last step in the process.
What is the Lectra-Lift Hard-Top?The top comes down and secures the boat. With the push of a button, the boat is secure and the interior is protected from the elements, especially the UV of the sun. The low profile of the top down means less chance of wind damage.
Securing the boat by lowering the top means no time and energy spent on putting a canvas cover over the boat.
The top goes up or down in 45 seconds. It can run with the top down as a three seat sport cruiser or with the top up, an elegant party boat for up to 12 people. With the top down it is secure and it is trailerable.
How big of a vehicle would be required to safely and comfortably tow this boat?A vehicle with a towing capacity of 4000 pounds or more.
Can I stand up on the top when it is down?Yes! It is extremely strong!
Does the top operate on the same electric system as the motor or are they independent?The only things they share are the batteries. They have separate control systems.
What kind of testing or experience have you had with all these systems?We have done bench testing and in the water testing on a regular basis. The test bed for the hard top motors was used for three months and the top was run up and down every five minutes, more use than is expected on a boat in 50 years.
How does the top work, i.e. what makes it go up and down?Four linear actuators have long screws in them that turn. They are very dependable. We just call them "struts". The technology has been in use for decades.
What are the vents in the liner of the retractable hard-top for?The top vents provide ventilation and access to the strut motors.
What protection system do you have to protect against the top pinning someones arm?The Lear 204 has redundant safety features built into the system that sense any interference in the smooth functioning of the roof. It stops and runs in reverse for two seconds if there is an obstacle.
However, be prudent! Always be watchful when lowering or raising the top, as watchful as you would be when closing an automobile window, hood or trunk.
The key fob is designed so that you must keep depressing the button until the roof has reached the desired position. This is to insure that you keep your attention on its action while it is in motion and don't get distracted.
Can you raise or lower the top while underway?Yes!
Can I get the boat with a fixed hardtop?Yes.
Can I get the boat with a canvas top?Yes.
Steering Wheel & HelmThe helm is beautifully appointed with the teaksteering wheel, which is specially designed by Terry Baylor and that we build ourselves.
The hydraulic steering adds to the sense of stability of the Lear 204. This is just one of the many factors that lets the driver know that this is the highest quality electric boat that money can buy.
I've heard corrosion can be a problem with an electric motor. How do you minimize this?This is true if the motor is fan cooled. A fan moves more salt air over the interior of the motor and causes corrosion.
We use an aluminum casting with fins. This is mounted over the motor and acts as a heat sink to draw heat away from the motor, rather than using a cooling fan which draws moist air into the motor.
Do you offer a heater?Yes.
What exactly is a controller?The controller handles the heavy amp loads necessary to run the motor. It takes its commands from the throttle. Fast, slow, forward and reverse. The interface of our entire controller is proprietary. It is solid state with the forward and reverse functions completely integrated.
How long will it run on a full charge?The Lear 204 can operate more than 10 hours @ five MPH: the more electrical devices that are used, the more the battery charge is used up and the length of time you can travel is reduced (from ten hours to eight hours, for instance). The battery meter indicates the rate at which the batteries are being used and shows you the percentage of useful battery power remaining.
What is the top speed of the Lear 204?The standard boat does 6 mph. The LEAR 204 is not about speed. Even so, there are a few areas where extra power is necessary to safely deal with tidal surges. Boats navigating those areas can upgrade to our Power Surge Propulsion system which has a 10 horsepower motor for a speed of 7.6 mph.
What is the E-Prop® and why is it special?Our exclusive five-blade propeller with plates on the tips of the blade is designed for low RPM electric propulsion. It is specially engineered to grab more water which allows the Lear 204 to accelerate quickly. The more blades a prop has, the easier it is to stay balanced.
The E-Prop® also diminishes “prop-walk” thereby giving the boat excellent reverse maneuverability.
How is your High Lift single rudder better?It is very important that the rudder on a boat be designed to match the exact performance parameters of the boat.
A thin high speed rudder is nearly ineffective on a boat designed to operate below 10 knots, no matter how many rudders you install on the boat.
A thick, high lift rudder only adds drag and cavitation to a high speed boat.
Our rudder is designed to operate in the speed range of our boat. Its shape is the natural continuation of the contour of our keel. It is a thick high lift type that only requires a 15% angle to turn the boat in its own length.
Does it use a battery system like the other electric boats?No. The Batteries on the Lear 204 are 8D sealed AGM Lifeline made by Concord (the company which makes the batteries for the LEARJET). These batteries are certified “non-hazardous”. This means no fumes from “flooded or vented” batteries and no need to top up the batteries with water. They are designed for multiple discharges.
At what percent of charge remaining should I head for home?The indicator tells you what percentage of a full battery charge you have left. Look at your battery meter before you leave the dock. Keep track of how it is reading. By judging how many hours you have traveled and how much power you are using per hour, you can gauge how much power per hour you will need to get home. Keep in mind that, if you are going to have to head into a wind, it will take you longer to get home.
We recommend never discharging your batteries lower than 20%: your batteries will last longer if you don’t discharge them down to zero.
If I only use the boat for four hours and I have over half the percentage of a full battery charge showing on the battery meter, should I recharge the boat when I get home?Yes. Batteries are protected if they are kept fully charged. The battery charger will “float” the batteries when they are fully charged. How much does it cost to fully charge the batteries of a Lear 204 if they are fully discharged?
The Lear 204 costs about $2.00 to fully recharge the six batteries for 10 hours using any 20amp or greater home or dock 110 volt outlet service (10hrs x 5mph = 50 miles).
What type of maintenance issues can I expect with the Lear 204?Compared with a powerboat, you can expect very little maintenance. Basically, keep the batteries charged, the battery charger will prevent over charging.
How long will the batteries last until they need to be replaced?Under normal usage and proper charging, they will last seven years.
Do the sink and swim-step shower operate off the same water tank?Yes, the same water tank for both.
Is the water potable?It is the owner’s choice. The person filling the tank determines the quality of the water.
What material is the water tank made of?Polyethylene. A company that makes water tanks for most of the marine industry makes our water tanks.
Can I get a built-in head with tank? And can it be enclosed?Yes. We offer a porta-poty with a privacy curtain.
How many people does it comfortably seat? What is the maximum?The Lear 204 seats 12 adults comfortably with plenty of leg-room for all.
Do you offer a choice of hull graphics, upholstery and carpet colors?Yes. These are custom. Owner's choice
What type of clear window enclosure do you have?The water proof EZ2CY® window system is the best in the world. Clearer than glass panels made with vinyl fabric are hung from a dual track, going all around the hardtop, which is especially designed for the Lear 204. These panels can be raised up to the roof-liner and fastened with ball cords into special slots in the roofliner so that the top can be lowered or for “top-up” cruising without windows when the weather is warm.
Why did you choose a top loading refrigerator and freezer?Cold air is heavy and spills out of a door that is vertical. The top loading refrigerator/freezer doesn’t spill cold air every time it is opened. Therefore it uses less power from the batteries.
How much does the refrigerator-freezer affect the battery charge if I leave it on all day?Depending on how full it is, and how often you open it up, it can reduce the runtime by approximately 10% max.
What grade stainless steel do you use for hardware?All hardware is made of marine grade stainless steel.
The Cleats on the Lear 204 are unusual, Where do they come from?I designed them specifically for the LEAR 204.
Do the cleats have back up plates?Yes.
Is the wood board on the cooler suitable to use as a cutting board?Yes.
Will sweating glasses or bottles make rings on the tabletop?No. All surfaces are water resistant.
What kind of wood are the doors, tabletop, and wheel made from?Teak is the wood we use in the deluxe model.
In the standard model, we use a high grade urethane.
Does the sink drain into the bilge or overboard? The ice cooler?The refrigerator will drain into the bilge.
And the sink and cooler drain overboard.