16 February, 2014

Provisioning and storage

Eating well on passage and while cruising is always one of the highest priorities on Malua. When I built Malua I constructed an extra large freezer and fridge so we could freeze meat and keep the beers and white wine cold. It worked well in the Pacific but started to require more time when I left the Med. I suspected it had leaked some gas so in Gibraltar I called the local refrigeration “expert” who vacuumed the system then tried to fill it with the correct gas. He did not have the correct gauges and had to guess the quantity of gas to add. Well crossing the Atlantic it started to go down hill and in the latter part of last years cruise the compressor was working but working hard.
It was time to replace the unit.

As with most technical things purchased in Australia the unit I had selected was no longer made so I called the Isotherm parts people to ask for a replacement. What followed was a third degree about the specifications of the holding plate, box size, insulation thickness and connectors. In the end I just stated “Will you sell me Unit xxyy for $Z – you have no liability about the functionality. I know what I am doing?” Yes But. Well it arrived. I installed it, connected up the tubes and then connected the refill can of 142A refrigerant gas with my gauges and started the process. It worked perfectly. The next day the freezer was at minus 8. Now to put some goods in it.
Estimating what we needed for the four month cruise is always a tricky job especially with a new crew member whose likes and dislikes I did not know. I had the Atlantic crossing as a guide but we were not able to get the fruit selection of the Canaries. As stated in the previous blog we were taken to Wolmart by Bob and spent three hour filling two trolleys.
The challenge facing us once we unpacked and listed everything was where to pack it. The large store space under the main cabin berth was empty after I installed the windvane so all the food not required for the first few months easily went into that space while the balance went into the plastic boxes designed to go into the space under the sink and workspace.
Christine listed stores and catalogued where they could be found while I packed the freezer. We are almost ready to go – just a few more items and a few more things to put in their right place.

A magical moment on Malua

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