Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Cyclone Preparation

Hi everyone,
Darwin is under cyclone watch this evening - the first of this cyclone season.  Interesting thing is there isn't a cyclone yet!  There is a high probability one will form nearby in the next day or two.  The BoM's current 4-day chart series shows a cyclone forming more or less over Darwin on Friday night.  Happily Zen Again is well prepared, in part because we're already booked to fly to Perth tomorrow!

Cyclone preparations include removing awnings, doubling up mooring lines, clearing the decks generally and lashing down anything which won't fit below etc.  The photos below show most boats in the marina are now "stripped for action"...

We have left lashing down the dodger and stowing the air conditioner until tomorrow morning.  Otherwise she's ready.

Irish Melody and The Doctor
Zen Again
And here's a picture of sunset earlier this week...

Tipperary Waters Sunset
Here's hoping the cyclone heads west.

Happy Christmas!

Friday, 2 December 2011

New Batteries and more

Hello everyone,
Another month.  Another set of jobs completed.  Since the preceding blog we have:-
  • Fitted four Harken 1968 locking double foot blocks in the cockpit (to handle four lines per side - jib sheet, staysail sheet, reaching sheet and boom brake).
  • Neil (the shipwright) installed a large shelf and sliding doors in the old pilot berth on the starboard side of the cabin.
  • Removed old batteries and their mounting boxes, creating a large stowage space under the quarter berth.
  • Rebuilt the "larder" (saloon table/locker unit) to house new batteries, prompting a name change to "the power station"
  • Installed and connected four new Lifeline 105Ah AGM batteries, giving us 315Ah of house battery capacity.  This included all-new wiring to the engine and the instrument panel.
  • Fitted BEP Battery Isolation Switches and Voltage Sensitive Relay.  The latter automatically charges the start battery from the engine before switching to charge the house bank.
  • Fitted a Xantrex TrueCharge2 40Amp battery charger for use when in marinas (like now!)
  • Our new staysail / storm jib is now enroute to us from UK Halsey in Fremantle.
  • All new mooring lines installed on-deck gear stowed - cyclone preparation.
Here are a few pictures....

New sliding doors on starboard side in saloon
New batteries and isolation switches
New Lifeline AGM batteries
It's now hot and humid in Darwin.  Thank goodness for air-conditioning!  Last night we had a violent thunderstorm appear overhead.  I woke up about 0.5m above the bunk.

Still plenty to do on the job list, but most of the expensive interior and on-deck work is now done.

Hope all's well where you are!