26 October, 2006

Additional Battery Bank

I finally added the additional battery bank which is 4 six volt Sonnenschein SB6 200 amp-hour under the aft cabin bunk. It fitted well and I was able to secure then with little effort. Then begun the task of rewiring Malua to divide the electronics from the motor based equipment. It was obvious that I had to isolate the chart plotter from the other components. After 18 hours of sailing with the autohelm the draw on the current fell below the chart plotters cut-off voltage and it would cut out.

To overcome this I split the electronics on one battery bank and the motor based equipment (winches, windlass and autohelm) connected to the second battery bank. There is still the starter battery. To achieve this I had to install a second four position heavy duty switch (Off, 1, 2 both). This then had to be wired and the other wires re-routed to suit the new layout. I created the attached wiring diagram well before tackling the job. It was easy to follow and everything fell into place. I also uncover an anomaly that had challenged me since I completed the original wring. The power no goes off then the negative is switched off.

The test will come with a overnight sail with the autohelm working away but with 1,000 amp hour I am sure there is enough capacity. The gen-set will have to work hard to keep the capacity up but with a 150 amp alternator and a smart regulator it will find it easy. The two solar panel are able to put in 8 amps of current which will ensure it is always topped up.

14 October, 2006

Glassing the Plug

Yesterday, the hottest day of the spring we decided to fibreglass the plug. Vince's yacht is in his factory and the deck is right under the roof so the temperature was right up there like an oven. As a result the fibreglass went off well before time and we struggled to get it wetted out. In fact it was a debacle. The plug was covered with different thicknesses of glass, some of which were well covered in resin while the others were still dry. Thank goodness it is only a mould.

I designed the windows on the plug then set about cutting the wood to form the frames in the female mould. These will be screwed to the inside of the mould.

Vince will remove the female mould from the plug and buff the edges to form the final mould. I will then return to Newcastle to lay-up my dodger before he does the same for his dodger.

07 October, 2006

Fitting dodger plug

I took the dodger plug to Newcastle to fit it to Vince's Adams 40 which is still under construction. This gave me a change to check the measurements and to see it in situ. I think it will look good although there is still a long way to go so there is still a down side risk.
Collected the sails from Noth loft after having a snuffer fitted to the big spinaker. They repaired some wear and tear on the working sails. I am still very pleased with the choice of North sails - the value, quality and service.

02 October, 2006

Hard Dodger

A Hard dodger is an extra which few yachts add after the event. In most cases they look like add-ons either because they lack design or are constructed from cheap and nasty material. Well a great looking integrated dodger is my challenge to add to Malua. While in the Pacific it rained and when I say rained it came down in bucketfuls. As a consequence the canvas dodger leaked and the water came down the companionway and into the saloon. In Europe it may not rain with such ferocity but it will rain for long periods of time and the canvas will be saturated.

I took measurements from my existing dodger and made a pattern. Then set about constructing the initial plug in wood. After a few design changes I set the final design. Then came the construction from timber I had in the yard. When I had almost finished I received a telephone call from Vince in Newcastle who is building an Adams 40 just like Malua who offered to do the fiberglassing. There seemed to be a win win for all so I said Ok I will take the plug to Newcastle and assist them construct the female mould then make the final product. I realised that transporting a 1.5 by 2.4 meter mould was not going to be easy. I had constructed it to stay in one place. I then had to add strengthening battens and many more pieces of timber to get it not to twist and fall apart.

The final product is now ready to ship which I will do on Thursday.