July/August 2010 Sailing Trip — Day 12

Today was a bit slow. I think we’re both kinda tired and not a little disheartened by what seems to be too many things that have to be done…more unplanned things than we’d expected.

I did manage to get the lid of the “battery box” (which also serves as the base on which the companionway stairs rest when they’re down) secured so we don’t have batteries flying around if we ever suffer a knockdown. At first, I’d planned to use webbing to strap the batteries into place, but then I realized that they have virtually no room to move about if the wooden lid doesn’t fall off. So I just screwed that lid down into place and the problem is solved. (The starter batteries were already secured with straps where they live further forward.)

Happily, the new Xantrex AC battery charger arrived today, so we removed the old charger (man, that thing was heavy!) and will give it to Earle to use or sell as he sees fit. The new one is much lighter and smaller, but we discovered that it required wiring to the AC ground line, as well as the hot and neutral lines. The old charger only connected to the hot and neutral lines (which probably explained why it would occassionally give me a shock when I’d touch it with a sweaty arm!), so we had to run a new green wire from the breaker panel through the quarter berth into the “garage” where the charger lives.

That took much longer than we thought it should have done, but the result was so worth it! The charger immediately started pumping out amps and the battery voltage rose to over 13.2 volts over the next several hours. Whew! Yes, we paid more than $400 (including shipping), but at least it proves that the old charger was faulty and that all we needed was a new charger. Yay!

We managed to do a few more minor things today, but they escape my memory. We’re on our way over to the bar for dinner and drinks. Beer, glorious beer!

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