Once all tied up and plugged in at Cooleys Landing (Downtown Fort Lauderdale), I left for the UK, for annual check-ups, eye tests, etc, Helen followed a week later. After a hectic few weeks of visiting friends and relatives, a few jobs at the flat, assisting The Met Police in trying to catch our mail thief and picking up parts and new bank cards, I’m returning today and Helen follows 8 days later.
So back in Florida is where the fun begins, I’ve got to get the cylinder head off the generator and get it across top Fischer panda USA to look at, take the knackered Alternator to have it rebuilt as a spare and then start to remove the old batteries & solar panels ready for the new lithiums and bigger panels to be fitted early next month.
There are always jobs to be done on a boat, there’s a saying amongst yachties that “cruising is just boat maintenance in exotic places” as it turns out its true! Although it has to be said that the journey to the Canaries and the Atlantic crossing really took its toll on the boat, and the availability of parts and spares are a lot harder and more expensive in the Caribbean than in the USA.
One of the things which I thought I had considered, but in truth probably didn’t consider well enough, was the HEAT, in both the Caribbean and generally on this side of the Atlantic! The heat below decks, in certain circumstances at sea with all the hatches shut and with the engine running, can sometimes get up into the region of 35-40°C plus and although most of the kit will run at higher temps, it doesn’t really like it and will likely play up and sometimes go into alarm.
In particular, the Charger/inverter, although the specs say it will work ok at 50°C, it keeps going out on high temperature alarm when both the generator and the engines running at the same time, although this is quite unusual to have them running both together, it suggests that where it is mounted maybe too close to the engine. This was ok for the cooler ambient temps of the UK, but will not work so well in 30°C plus. So along with the step-up transformer and shorepower isolators, they will all have to be moved, possibly along with some better general ventilation for the starboard side utility room.
As we carry out the work with the Lithium batteries and new solar panels I’m going to write up a separate post describing the process. With Costs type and manufacturer etc.