Day 382 Batteries,dining area cabinet
The big battery day has arrived! The batteries are AGM type ( glass mat from Magnacharge) and were around $500 each. We are going to have 4 of them, which I think is average for a boat this size. These are by trojan ( not to be confused with the computer viruses! ) and have about 240 amp/hours each. All together we will have 960 amp hours. This means we could power something like a light, that draws 1 amp, for 960 hours before the batteries fizzled out . Or we could power something that drew 960 amps ( like a "giant space laser" for example...) for 1 hour. The windlass draws about 120 amps, so we'd be pretty poor sailors to take 8 hours to set our anchor.
The top of the page image is actually a musical video of us getting them, and the 110lb Bruce anchor,  in. Just wave your mouse over it if you haven't already by accident, or right click it to "save as" if you can't view it in the browser. (.wmv)

The battery "box" is just that. Seated very low in the boat, completely below the water line, we found they just fit. This should be something that is planned far in advance.

The ingenious slider design is Genas' and let me tell you I was impressed! I had just thought of stacking then one on top of the other and stuffing foam in plastic bags down the side to hold them in place. The problem with that is the batteries weight over 160 lbs each! It doesn't take a mathematician to figure out there will be 480 lbs of weight on the bottom battery, and that's not including the momentous forces generated by heaving up and down large waves while in inclement weather.

Each section of this frame has little steps ( shown below and to the right in the long, long picture. )  Each step is inserted and screwed into place as the batteries are slid down the track.


They fit very tightly, and had to be stomped in place to get them down. I ended up hurting my hand on the rope as I wasn't paying attention to the way it was pointing with the rope wrapped around it 3 times when the battery let loose! Duh! After lifting 4 batteries over the transom, across the cockpit, and into the boat,, we were pretty pooped out. Good thing we didn't have 5, I couldn't have done it.

The top of the box has a lid that will be gasketed and bolted down to seal it just in case. If it ever gets flooded, the bilge pumps can keep running at least. We have read stories of people holed by a dead head or cargo container, and the pumps would go for 1/2 hour then die because the contacts on the batteries were rotted quickly by salt water and electrolysis. We could never figure that out. Why have an electric pump, when the batteries are going to be flooded by the time it turns on? Hmmm.

Late into the night I worked on the little cabinet above the dining area. I had to be careful how far it stuck out as it could become a head banging hazard. The panel for the Xantrac inverter, battery monitor, the load diverter, bilge pump manual control, and my little level indicator panel.

They just barely all fit!

The experience from past cabinet building ( over the last few weeks ) has told me that maybe making the shelving and frame as much as possible before putting it in would be a good idea.
 The photo to the right shows the shelves just pushed into the end piece. The end is routed in just 1/8" but these slots will make it stronger and easier to install.

The photo to the left shows the frame in place, along with the dividers.


 It was attached to the bulkhead and cabin side with 1/2" quarter-round, screws & glue.  The quarter round was attached first and pre-drilled for the screws. (#6 size!) It went up really easily and I have found a new and better method for making cupboards/lockers/cabinets. To bad this is probably the last one I'll be building!

Next the facing was added. The only tricky section was the top plate. After battening and some sanding it fits like a glove. The only thing left ( I ran out of stream ) is the two small facings on the angled section. This is mostly for the look but also to erase the sharp corner of a right angle.

 Tomorrow I will finish the right side as it is to be a  book case for Gena.

The batteries aren't hooked up yet, but once they are I will be tempted into mounting the over head lights. My order of LEDs from, an LED manufacturer, just came in. Their prices are unbelievable. 1/5 of the cost from the states, for the same thing! And they actually communicate one on one if you have questions. I'll definitely refer them to anyone looking for LEDs.


Day 382:
11 hours - Brought up batteries and installed them, made cabinet over the dining area aft bulkhead.

To DAY 381


  The Wireless Mobile boatcam  

To DAY 383+