The importance of alternative power

After reading about the Carnival cruise boat in the Gulf of Mexico CNN 2013 it has got me thinking about the heavy reliance on the engine power.  They have lost engine power.

Their power is out. The toilets don’t work, the air conditioning doesn’t work, lights don’t work. It’s too hot in the cabins so people are sleeping in the hallways on mattresses, they are urinating in showers and defecating into bags. Hardly the image a cruise line wishes us to imagine when embarking on a trip of a life time. There are many unhappy people. For some it will be their last trip. Enough is enough.

After buying my own boat and getting behind the wheel and having control, I don’t want to take a cruise on a cruise liner with hundreds of other people. It doesn’t appeal. This was my feeling before thinking about engine power loss.

I bring the cruise boat saga back to my own quest for a boat. Yachting magazines are full of gorgeous boats and the longer the length the more luxurious the interior and the more modern the conveniences. It becomes like a hotel on water. Everything is fine when the engine is working but if/when it stops what do you do?

The ability to have alternative power sources becomes necessary if planning to sail off shore. Can you fix an engine while off shore? I don’t know. I suppose it depends on the part that needs fixing and the ability of the skipper and/or crew. I know today that I would be of no help in this situation.

I don’t plan to go offshore just yet. Crawling then walking before running is the sensible approach. Coastal trips in the near foreseeable future. I have Coastguard membership and if I need rescuing I can radio for help. I have not needed their help as of yet. It’s more of an insurance. A friendly person only a radio call away. And of course you log your trip with the Coastguard whenever you leave port so someone knows where you are. And when you return. Planning and organisation.

SOLAR
solar

WIND

wind

GEN-SET
gen-set

What happens if the alternative power source also malfunctions? Worst case scenario one: the solar panel catches fire. What do you do? How do you put out a solar panel fire? Can it be put out? Fire extinguisher.

Wind generators. I love the idea of them. They need to be maintained too. How handy am I? Show me how to do it and I will learn. Why are there no wind generators on a trawler? Because they have gen-sets and solar instead.

Gen-set or Marine generator is an alternative source of power. The choices are endless.

I want to be hands on, on my boat. I want to be able to fix things. Not everything. Otherwise I would never leave shore. I know you can never be prepared for every worst case scenario but it helps to be a little handy.

Nordhavn 40 propeller

4 blade propeller for a Lugger L-668 naturally aspirated 105 HP Diesel Engine
The keel of the Nordhavn 40 Mk II has a fully enclosed shoe.
The protection for the propeller is superb.
This is the ideal keel in my humble opinion.
Protection to the propeller saves money on repairs if you end up somewhere too shallow, hit rocks. Prevention beats repairs hands down. Think of the time a boat may be on the hardstand while repairs are made. Valuable summer time when you could have been on the water. Avoided if you had a full shoe.
The only thing I would add to this for peace of mind would be a prop shaft line cutter. Again preventing your propeller from stopping with tangled rope or fishing lines. Beware they are sharp but because of the full shoe if you were swimming below inspecting your boat you have the aid of the shoe to help avoid putting your hand near the cutter blade.

Nordhavn 40

1nordhavn40.png

Discontinued model: Nordhavn 40

Specifications:
Main engine: Lugger 105HP
Wing (back up) engine: Yanmar 30HP

Angled windows help stop glare when at the helm. Easier to read your instruments.

Engine Room with easy access.

Large Stateroom with full queen sized bed.

Nordhavn builds trawlers which can cruise long range.

nordhavn40

 

 

A boat on a boat

060313
I was eating watermelon anchored in the bay when I spied a boat on a boat. I just had to take a photograph.
We have been looking at moorings and marinas and boats. Every time we go we learn something new. And we see something new from the previous time through new eyes. We spot the boat differences, shapes of the hulls, the presence or absence of a furling sail. The moorings with fingers. It is a whole new world that is opening up to us. It is enjoyable.

230V Shore Power

switch

If buying an American boat be aware of the voltage difference and using shore power
American boats are wired for 110 volts you can’t plug them into our 230-volt shore power and run the internal air-con units, TVs, fridges and so on.

Check with your insurance company to see if they are compliant with New Zealand standards.

Australia: 230V     50Hz
Fiji:  240V    50Hz
New Caledonia: 220V    50Hz
New Zealand: 230V    50Hz
Samoa:  230V    50Hz
Tonga:  240V    50Hz
USA: 110V   60Hz
Vanuatu:  230V    50Hz

Voltage World List:
https://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plug-voltage-by-country/

Electrical Warrant of Fitness for your Boat
If you intend to leave your boat at a marina then you will need an Electrical Warrant of Fitness (EWOF). Details are below for what is required in New Zealand but you will need to check also with the marina administration as well.

https://worksafe.govt.nz/topic-and-industry/energy-safety/electrical-and-gas-safety-requirements-for-caravan-motorhome-and-boating/#lf-doc-42453

Then again if you use solar power and 12V system there is no need for shore power, is there?

 

Safer Boating Week launched

saferboating

©Maritime New Zealand

“October 17–24 has been declared Safer Boating Week this year, in what will become an annual focus on keeping boaties safe in the lead up to Labour Weekend – the traditional time to get boats and gear ready for summer.”*1

“The vast majority of recreational boating fatalities do occur on boats under 6m. It’s simply a fact that you are more vulnerable on small boats.”*2

“A total of 23 boaties died on the water last year. The same number had died this year as of yesterday.”*3

FIVE TIPS FOR STAYING SAFE ON THE WATER:

* Check your boat

* Wear your life jacket

* Take two forms of waterproof communication equipment

* Check the maritime weather forecast

* Avoid alcohol

Maritime New Zealand*1 *2
New Zealand Herald*3

A welcome sight on the sea

birds
Birds on the sea are a welcome sight. It means fish are in the area. Drop those lines off the back of the boat if you haven’t already. You don’t need GPS to alert you on this one. Don’t forget your natural instincts, don’t rely on modern technology, use your eyes, your sixth sense, your common sense. Be safe. Be well fed! Happy Fishing. 🙂

The Complete Anchoring Handbook: Stay Put on Any Bottom in Any Weather – Book

complete_anchoring

©www.amazon.com

Title: The Complete Anchoring Handbook: Stay Put on Any Bottom in Any Weather
Author: Alain Poiraud, Achim Ginsberg-Klemmt, Erika Ginsberg-Klemmt
Publisher: International Marine/ Ragged Mountain Press
Date Published: 2007
Pages: 256
Price: US$11.49 (Amazon.com) Kindle Version

For sailing boats, planing boats and displacement boats. For everyone who wants to anchor in a bay and sleep well without waking up every few hours and getting up to check the anchor!
Has it dragged?
Will I hit the boat next door?
Am I going to hit the rocks in the night?
Whether you have an anchor on your boat already or you are looking at buying a boat this book will advise you in choosing the correct anchor for the conditions where you are anchoring and how to anchor properly. You may find it encouraging finding that you already have the right size,weight and style but if you have purchased this book or are thinking then perhaps your boat has already dragged in the night. Get a good night’s sleep with the right anchor. How about the chain? I have the kindle version but I may just get the paperback too.

 

Diesel Engine Handbook – Book

diesel_engine
Title: Diesel Engine Handbook
Author: Andrew Simpson
Publisher: The Royal Yachting Association
Date Published: 2006
Pages: 94
Price: NZ$32.87 (Book Depository)
Extras: DVD included

The official course book for the RYA One-Day Diesel Engine Course.
A reference guide to understand and maintain your marine diesel engine.

How the Diesel Engine Works
Fuel
Air System
Engine Cooling
Electrical System
Lubrication
Transmission
Engine Controls
Starting and Stopping your engine
Diagnostics and Troubleshooting
Maintenance
How to do it
Emergency Procedures

The Weather Identification Handbook – Book

weather_identification
Title: The Weather Identification Handbook
Author: Storm Dunlop
Publisher: The Lyons Press
Date Published: 2002
Pages: 192
Price: NZ$20.40 (Book Depository)

See the sky and clouds with new eyes and enjoy the depth of greater knowledge. Recognise a
cumulus when you see one. See Guide to Weather Forecasting for further reading