Monday, 11 August 2014

Where’s the RNLI?

Jan was up early anticipating the howling gale, when she noticed the side hatch could be opened.  This wasn’t possible when she went to bed last night as the concrete edge against the boat was too high.  Then she realized there was no edge!  We were at sea………  She raced out the back and could see land on the horizon.  I was dragged from my slumbers by a frantic wife. <Readers…Jan here.  No panic from me as I handed him his superman suit>   In my half awake state I successfully thrust my big toe through the small hole in the knee of my jeans and tore them to the cuff.  Oh well; more rags for the engine bay!  We were indeed adrift both fore and aft.  When mooring yesterday I struggled to drive the stern pin into the hard ground.  However I was successful and the pin was driven into the ground all the way to the eye.  The bow line was wrapped twice around a mooring bollard and then tied off on the boat.  After we had resecured the boat I checked the original mooring pin hole.  There’s no sign of horizontal movement in the hole.  It appears the pin came out vertically.  Me thinks the local fairies visited last night and decided to untie us?
On yesterday’s post I mentioned the nice mooring in Nelson.  Here is a photo.
On the off-side and behind gates (unfortunately not lockable)
We have both noticed that the boat engine sometimes has a quick pulse of deceleration and I was concerned the fuel might be contaminated.  This morning I checked the two fuel pre-filters.
The filter on the left is a Purifiner which was fitted by JG Marine Braunston in May of this year whilst the filter on the right is the original that came with the engine.  I did ask JG Marine whether both were required and was informed leaving the original in wouldn’t do any harm as more than enough fuel was reaching the engine.  Well I drained the Purifiner into an ice cream container.
There are some small particles that look like rust or construction debris along with some “jel” which might be fuel bug.  There’s no sign of water.  The fuel from the second filter was clear.  I’m not going to do anything about the fuel tank at this time.  However I’ll continue to monitor the content of the pre filters to see if the situation gets worse.
After doing a check of the engine I started it.  Everything was running well and then the engine had one of those little “blips”.  I noticed the bulk charge LED on the Sterling PDAR had illuminated for a second and then turned off.  Then I remembered the SmartGauge usually shows the battery bank around 80% charged most mornings.  Now at 80% the battery charge usually changes from Bulk to Absorption.  My guess is the Sterling PDAR is making a momentary attempt to Bulk charge the batteries before realising they can’t take the higher charge rate.  This causes a momentary load on the engine which we have noticed.  If correct; I see three positives from this:
  • The PDAR is working correctly.
  • We are placing very little load on the two alternators (175A & 50A) which will hopefully extend their working life.
  • We have been able to effectively manage our energy usage which should extend the life of the domestic battery bank.


Paul (from Waterway Routes) said...

Two left hand filters?

Tom and Jan said...

Thanks Paul,

Would you believe it had been checked three times by two people before posting and neither of us noticed the error! :-)

Les Biggs said...

One filter was left of engine and the second filter left of the first.
Simples, it's called boat talk.

Tom and Jan said...

Ha ha Les.....

I hope the doctors don't have the same approach otherwise you might find your plumbing is incorrectly reconnected! :-)