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Messages - Brett

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Swap Meet / Boatsafe 750W engine room heater (New in Box) $225
« on: April 20, 2015, 09:38:47 am »
I bought two of these in a closeout when Boatsafe discontinued these in favor of the 1000W version. As it turns out we only need one. These normally retailed for $395.

Systems / Re: Battery settings when away from your boat.....
« on: April 17, 2015, 08:50:49 am »
Brett,  I had a similar issue a couple years ago.  It was very frustrating, and I even removed the starter and had it tested at a shop.  I ended up inspecting wires and cleaning every connection in the starter and battery circuits, like Dave mentioned, and that surely was the best thing to do.  Pay particular attention to the negative side which is sometimes overlooked.  I finally traced the problem down to the battery switch which appeared fine, but tested out with high resistance.  One last thought: shouldn't you move the bilge pump wiring over from the start battery to the house banks?  That would remove some of the draw-down on your start battery.  Matthew

I think I have a long weekend of full wiring and switch inspection in my near future.  Ugh.....If I recall correctlly, our secondary pump is wired to our house bank.

Systems / Re: Battery settings when away from your boat.....
« on: April 16, 2015, 09:14:29 am »
I spoke to Trojan.  They say two T-105's should be enough to start the diesel.  So, there is some serious trouble shooting to be done.  When we tried to start using just the house banks the voltage on the display dropped from 13.5 to 12.9 then 12.6 pretty quickly so there is some issue.  I'm not sure  why new batteries would do that.  The ten batteries are in two banks.  I think I am just having trouble believing it is the wiring since once the start battery tops off after the isolation switch being turned to "all" it runs up and starts the diesel easily.  If the diesel is run regularly there aren't any issues either.   If there was a wiring problem wouldn't that attempt to top off the start battery fail also ?  I can't seem to get a response from Jack about the Shottky diodes so when I get back I will have to look for them and test them or install them.
It has been really stressful and financially draining the last 16 months getting things up to speed on KH.  At times it has felt like we aren't going to make it before we run out of money to fund the dream. Or once we get out full time the persistent issues will end the cruise prematurely.

Systems / Re: Battery settings when away from your boat.....
« on: April 13, 2015, 10:29:08 pm »
We are kinda stuck with the setup we have due to space limitations, we have two banks, one of six and one of four.  The house batteries definitely won't start our diesel even when fully charged, I've tried that several times with the old and new batteries. They will top off the starting battery and then it will start the diesel.  I can't find any heat in the connections or switches so far.  We do have large fuses close to battery banks though.  I'm thinking I'll keep the batteries switched together so the charging apparatus can keep the starting battery full then switch just to starting battery when ready to fire up the diesel.

Our last starting battery lasted about five years based on dates we got from Jack. 

I'll research the thermal breaker and diode option....maybe Jack installed those and I just haven't run across them yet. He said he went strictly by Calder's methods when rewiring the boat. 


Systems / Re: Battery settings when away from your boat.....
« on: April 13, 2015, 09:07:52 am »
the only draw on the start battery "should" be the bilge pump.....but the house banks don't have enough cranking power to start the diesel on their own it seems even when on a full float charge.....granted I'm no battery expert ....our house battery set up is ten paired 6V flooded lead acid batteries with 225ah each which would seem to me on the surface to be sufficient but it just doesn't get the job done.....perhaps it is a matter of cranking amperage as opposed to amp hours ?  both house banks in conjunction with  the start battery will start the diesel though...this whole setup was supposed to be done in conformity with Nigel Calder's recommendations in his "Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual".....but I guess there's always room for error....are your house batteries 6V or 12V ?

Systems / Re: Water Tank Leak
« on: April 12, 2015, 06:27:46 pm »

How much water is in the tank?  The reason I ask is because there was a time when I was filling our tanks and could not figure out why the tanks were not filling until I realized that the tanks were full and the water was just running out the air vent hose which is inside the port and starboard cockpit lockers.  The water just ran over the top of the tank and into the engine room.  As far as I'm aware our tanks are molded into the hull and can't see how they would show a sign of leaks.  Anyway I hope it is as simple as the vent for you.

+1 on that....that's the only time we have ever had a "leak" and was just a matter of too much water added to the tank....

Systems / Battery settings when away from your boat.....
« on: April 12, 2015, 06:25:51 pm »
Hello all,  we have been experimenting with different switch setups for our batteries when we leave the boat for a month or so.  I was initially told it was a good idea to leave the start battery isolated but every time I have done that when we get back it is low/dead.  It is a deep cycle group 31 marine starting battery.  I am guessing that is because it is isolated from shore/solar charging and the bilge pump may be running a little while we are gone.  Also probably some of the self discharge involved also.  When we return, realize it won't start the diesel and I switch the barrel switch back to "all" after five minutes or so it is charged enough to start the diesel and I can switch back to just the start battery and fire the diesel up.  "All" setting ties our ten house batteries in (Trojan T105's).  House batteries are <6months old, start battery Cells are always full of water and battery is <10 months old and has been tested for bad cells.  I am curious what others do? Leave all batteries connected via the barrel switch or other method to keep start battery charge level up then switch it back before firing up the diesel or am I missing something?

Systems / Fireboy/Xintex CO detectors
« on: November 27, 2014, 10:35:16 am »
I recently learned something interesting about CO detectors which has prompted me to post this.....

I didn't realize that newer CO detectors (made in the last decade) have a built in timer, powered by a small lithium battery that counts down the service life of the detector.  This service life was recently shortened to five years due to UL standards.  This timer starts at the factory when the unit is assembled.  A detector I purchased about 18 months ago, that I installed, began malfunctioning last month and I sent it to the manufacturer for testing. As it turns out it was manufactured over seven years ago and had reached its "timeout time". I wish I could recall where I purchased it so I could avoid buying from that place again since they are obviously selling units way past their shelf life with very little service life left.  I didn't realize how pricey those things have become ....MSRP of $166 ....ouch...if you buy one be sure to check the circuit board for the manufacture date before you leave the store or install it. Fireboy/Xintex did offer me a unit for $120 but fortunately I can buy one at West Marine for $119 minus the holiday discounts so that's not much of a deal.  Hope this helps someone else avoid this issue....

Systems / Re: Troubleshooting a Frigiboat K50F
« on: November 12, 2014, 07:43:11 pm »
Great....thanks Dave

Systems / Re: Troubleshooting a Frigiboat K50F
« on: November 11, 2014, 08:28:49 am »
I considered moving them at one point but I'm not really sure where I would go with them.  Jack installed these in 2009 I think.   Our engine room actually stays pretty cool all things considered and we have only put about 100 hours on our diesel in the last year so normally the engine room is the same as the ambient temperature anyway.  I like the idea of a fan to introduce some fresh, cooler air while motoring though, as that would be good for the diesel also. I'll need to investigate the method for adjusting the compressor speed though, I don't recall an obvious way to do so on the unit.  When I get the new controller and everything is reinstalled I'll check the temperatures and see how they look.  Thanks again.....

Systems / Re: Troubleshooting a Frigiboat K50F
« on: November 10, 2014, 06:22:53 pm »
I got a call from Coastal Climate today....bad controller....I had gauges for the pressure on board and had just had the system triple vacc'ed  and nitrogen pressure tested.....both of our compressors are in the engine room.  We will definitely carry a couple spares once we spend more time outside of the U.S. 



Systems / Re: Troubleshooting a Frigiboat K50F
« on: November 08, 2014, 06:36:45 pm »
We decided to just pull the controller and send it to Coastal Climate for testing.....the answer to one of my questions is no, you can't run power straight to the compressor .....also, never use any coolant with stop leak or UV leak detector in it.....only use unadulterated R134A

Systems / Troubleshooting a Frigiboat K50F
« on: November 06, 2014, 08:01:24 am »
I recently had our freezer compressor stop cooling.  I checked the gas pressure which was good.  I had the whole system triple flushed, vacuumed and recharged six months ago.  I jumped the thermostat connections and it ran briefly but still didn't cool.  Later it stopped running and would only attempt to start for a second or two then shut down again.  I checked the thermostat and had good continuity on that line.  I have appropriate voltage at the connections.  The  fan runs as usual.  I can't seem to get any diagnostic codes from the controller either.....can I run power straight to the compressor without damaging it?  I also thought I'd take the controller off if the compressor would run and send it in to Coastal Climate for testing.  Any suggestions or thoughts ? Thanks

Systems / Re: Winterizing
« on: November 06, 2014, 07:53:10 am »
Well, I would have to leave the boat around Christmas to run home for a few days to see family.  I worry, that when the weather is the worst is when the power usually fails so the heaters or lights become ineffective for that period.  It's a 12 hour drive to get back, so if an unexpected storm or cold front hits and the damage would be done before I could return. 

Systems / Re: Winterizing
« on: October 28, 2014, 08:34:12 pm »
Thanks Peter,....I spoke to a few folks at the marina.....I got varying definitions of what they would options are to stay aboard through late December to early January or take an early December trek and head south.....I am leaning toward the latter....I can't lie....I won't hate that

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