A full five day work week here for everyone but me it seems as I had mine cut down by almost 2 days while I looked after a hernia that I developed on my Left side last week. Nothing too serious, I had one on my Right side about 25 years ago and apparently my body wanted to keep all my internals symmetrical so time to fix the Left side this week.
WARNING: This week’s intro may be TMI as my children used to often say; “Too Much Information” Dad!, so you are welcome to skip down to the next section below if you prefer.
The medical system here in Turkey is absolutely awemazing, easily amongst the best anywhere in the world and so after a few visits for ultrasound and other testing they did the laparoscopic or “keyhole” type surgery on Monday morning and I was released Tuesday noon and was able to stop in to see how things were going on XPM78-01 Möbius before heading home to rest for the rest of the day.
They ended up needing to put in a 10cm x 25cm (4” x 10”) strip of hernia mesh material which was much larger than they had originally thought because they decided to cover both my Left and Right sides for a more “future proof” reinforcement.
This required three different entry points for the laparoscopes so I ended up with three neat little “bullet wound” looking spots across my lower abdomen which should be fun for future wild tales from Grampa Wayne in the future.
Hence the double meaning of “tender” for this week’s Progress Update as it applies to my condition this week and MUCH more importantly the beginning of the build of the Tender to mv Möbius!
Best of all however is that I’m feeling much less Tender every day and the Tender to Möbius is feeling more and more real by the day.
So let’s jump right into this week’s Show & Tell of the overall progress on XPM78-01 Möbius for this week of August 24 to 29, 2020.
TENDER to “my Möbius” (my = motor yacht)
First for some perspective, here are the basic details for the Tender:
Central steering station with sloped dash area large enough for small navigation equipment, display screen, switches, gauges, etc.
Twin side by side seats at steering station.
Additional seats for minimum of 2 other adults, ideally 4
Built in lockers sufficient in number and size to hold typical items including life vests, fire extinguisher, spare plastic fuel jugs
Diesel fuel tank integral with hull, 80-100 L capacity
Equipped with full cover such that the Tender can be used as the boat’s life raft.
Designed to withstand ocean going conditions with waves up to 4m and wind up to 8 beaufort.
Engine and propeller system will be owner supplied, small likely 3 cylinder diesel with fixed prop.
Tender will have large continuous “bumper” wrapping around both sides and bow sufficiently strong to allow using these Tender to push Möbius and other boats and resist abrasion from rough docks, rocks, etc.
Foam collar will be adhered to a custom built recess in the hull for this foam bumper and have a wide flat section across the Bow for pushing.
Build in support bars on both side of the flat Bow for safety when boarding from the Bow
Swim Step overtop of extruding Jet Drive to fully protect the drive gear when backed into docks, rocks, etc.
Here is what those specs and use case look like when transformed into the final 3D model after many months of working with Yigit and Burak.
We also worked with the engineers at Yamaha and Castoldi who helped get the hull shape, dimensions and weight distribution just right. The Castoldi Jet Drive 224 DD (Direct Drive) ……. …… is coupled to the Yanmar 110HP/81kW
Yanmar 4JH4 HTE diesel engine using a Cardan shaft and a Centaflex flexible coupling.
We think this combination will make for an eXtremely safe, fast, fun and dry ride!
You may recall seeing in last week’s Progress Update that all the CNC cut plate for building the Tender to my Möbius had arrived and first thing Monday morning Uğur started sending me pictures of he and Nihat tearing into that stack of aluminium and starting to assemble all those CNC cut jigsaw puzzle pieces.
Similar to the building of the Möbius herself, this process of assembling precisely cut, numbered and interlocking pieces to build an aluminium hull boat is very similar to assembling a jigsaw puzzle or plastic model airplane kit. As you can see if you look closely (click to enlarge any photo) the CNC cutter is programmed to leave tiny little “bridges” or tabs every so often along the through cuts so that the individual pieces stay part of the whole sheet of aluminium so they can be shipped/trucked very efficiently.
I received a lot of comments from last week’s posting of how much you enjoyed seeing the Davit go together so sequentially so I will do the same below with the Tender by quickly going through photos as the build progresses quickly with a bit of explanatory text along they way. Ready – Set – GO!
Nihat likes to start by wire wheeling all the surfaces to remove the aluminium oxide layer and provide a super clean surface to weld to. Next he uses a cutting disk in an angle grinder to sever all the little tabs and remove each individually numbered piece from the sheet. He sorts all the pieces into stacks of similar pieces such as this pallet with all the Deck/Flooring plates. Thursday morning, Aug 27th, the real fun begins as they start the kit building process by laying the three bottom hull plates on the floor and tacking the vertical frames in place which starts to pull the hull plates into the exactly correct angles. To shape the more complex curved bow, we used an Origami boat building technique which our Rhino 3D modeling software makes very easy. This process begins by creating a 3D model in Rhino (thanks Yigit and Burak!), and you refine the shape of the model using hydrodynamic testing to come up with the Goldilocks or Just Right shapes and angles for the use case the hull will operate within. Then Rhino3D has a “Flatten” function that creates the paths for curved CNC cuts.
In this photo you can see the first Starboard/Right side hull plate laying flat awaiting the Port/Left plate to join the party. Captain Christine joins Omer & Uğur to get a sense of the shape and scale of our new Tender. Aluminium bars are tacked in place to provide temporary attachment points for the chain tackle to pull the curved cuts into contact with each other. This proceeds in stages, welding the plates where they touch as you work your way forward. Uğur ‘s keen eye is constantly checking as he pulls the two halves together to ensure that everything stays perfectly aligned as he welds the seam to join the two plates into the finished bow.
To assist with keeping all these compound curves all aligned with each other they have also now tacked the two strake plates to the top outer edges of each hull plate. This strake helps the water flow both lengthwise and sideways to deflect the bow wave off to the side rather than up the hull and onto those of us aboard. Similar process is used to now add the next row of hull side plates and pull them into alignment with the lower plates and strakes and tack them in place as the build continues. View from the top makes it easy to see how this all comes together. With the Bow end tacked in place Nihat and Uğur clamp the rest of these side hull plates into position and ………… ………………… tack them along the whole length of the hull like this. Looking at the stern from about the waterline level you can see the profile shape of the hull which is what a jet drive boat wants. Also makes for eXtremely small Draft so we can travel through very shallow waters with no damage to the coral and nature below or to the hull. Integral fuel tank has three sections, one on each side which flow into the deeper compartment on center in front. The very front bow compartment will be for storage of things like anchor & chain. Nihat starts adding in the frames inside each tank and tacking those in place. First frame of the center console being fitted. This will have monitors on the upper sloped surface with controls and steering wheel below and double seat aft. There will also be an acrylic windshield extending above the top of the AL console for added wind and water protection for the pilot. Port side console frame helps to fill in the overall shape and size of the console which is asymmetrically positioned to extend all the way over to the Starboard/Right side hull at the bottom of this photo and leave a walkway on the opposite Port/left side. Uğur and Nihat are a great team so the Tender progresses quickly as Nihat tacks the pieces in place and Uğur follows behind doing all the finish welding. Still lots of jigsaw puzzle pieces to be added!
Omur our student intern from Istanbul Technical Institute helps out by holding this upper coaming plate vertical for Nihat to smooth the curved edges from where they were attached to the CNC cut plat originally. Console all tacked up as is the framing for the Floor/Deck plates fore and aft of the console and under the seat base. Just for a test fit right now this inner side plate will wait for the internal welding to be completed before being slid into place and welded to the hull. Burak kindly plotted some larger scale 2D drawings and shots of the model which Uğur has mounted on this board beside the Tender with Möbius looing on from behind. 25mm / 1” thick AL Engine Bed plates being test fit on either side of the “Engine Room” area aft. Up near the Bow, Nihat has the one piece top deck plate ready for Uğur to weld in place. As with the main hull of Möbius slot welding is used to weld AL plate to the frames that are inaccessible underneath. As we have been doing most weeks, we are working on Saturdays to try to make more progress so this is where the Tender build was at when we finished the day yesterday. Did I mention that day time temps are running 34-38C / 93-100F? Add all the heat from the MIG welder and you have three VERY wet Tender Builders! Uğur takes a well deserved pause to survey the days work and let the air blow over him from one of two big squirrel cage fans we have setup to blow air across the Tender.
I hope you enjoyed this whirlwind tour of the past three days and this photo is how the Tender build looks at quitting time yesterday. Tune in again next week and I’ll walk you through the rest of the build of the Tender to my Möbius.
DAVIT ARCH BUILD:
Lest you think that the Tender was all that Nihat and Uğur worked on this past week, they also finished building the hinged Davit Arch that we will use to move the Tender On/Off Möbius’ Aft Deck.
This is the first test fitting of the three individual segments that make up the Davit Arch. Two vertical legs on each side which are bolted to the horizontal cross beam above. One of the vertical legs on the Upper Left here and the upside down cross beam on the Right. For added strength these additional 25mm/1” plates will span the connection between the horizontal beam and the short angled pipes that connect this to the vertical Arch legs. Uğur quickly has them fully welded with multiple passes of his MIG gun.
The plate spanning the two braces will also provide two addition attachment points for the 6:1 blocks and Dyneema the Tender will be suspended from. Now time to build the two Hinged Base assemblies where the bottom legs of the Davit Arch connect to the Aft Deck. Two of these 25mm/1” thick base plates will attach to the Aft Deck and support the large Hinges. These two triangular vertical plated form the outer sides of the hinge with the 50mm/2” SS hinge pin fastened in between. Due to the camber of the Aft Deck and the different offset from the boat’s centerline, the two hinges are at different heights above the deck. These two very thick tubes are the third part of hinge and will be machined to slide between the two vertical triangular pieces above. These tubes will be inserted into these large holes in the bottom of each Arch leg where they will captured between the two plates on the Base and rotate on the SS hinge pins that slide through all three parts of the hinge.
Stay tuned for mounting this to the Aft Deck and testing it out in the next week or two.
Mr. Gee Gets All Glossy
With my shortened week I didn’t get as much time to work on Mr. Gee but I was able to do some more painting and clear coating on Saturday including a good clear polyurethane coating of this aluminium beauty. This is the rarely seen back side of the massive fuel inject pumps and governor assembly that bolts to the Port/Left side of Mr. Gee. Sorry for the poor lighting but this is the side you see and where all the action happens with the fuel injection system. The six vertical levers for example are what you pull to prime each cylinder and the high pressure injection pumps are located right behind them.
Burgundy part in the foreground is bolted to the flange above it and pumps engine oil through that massive solid Bronze oil cooler/heat exchanger on the other side of Mr. Gee that you’ve seen me rebuilding in previous postings.
These instructions are cast into the large aluminium Header Tank at the front of Mr. Gee which is like the plastic bottle on your car’s engine where you check and add anti-freeze/water.
I’ve painted these with matching Burgundy and next week I will polish off the tops of the letters to make them a bit easier to read and add a bit more class to Mr. Gee. Same thing will happen to the instructions cast into this timing chain adjuster lever.
And these cover plates which bolt to the sides of the cylinder heads.
Mr. Gee’s Best Buddy; Nogva CPP
You might think that Captain Christine is “just” the Captain, she was also called up for our all hands on deck work schedule and spent two very hot days cleaning, sanding and masking the Nogva CPP Servo Gearbox that will soon be bolted to the back of Mr. Gee.
Mr. CPP may be small but he is mighty and provides the 2.95:1 gear reduction to Mr. Gee’s already slow spinning crankshaft.
With a CPP, Controllable Pitch Propeller, we don’t have a transmission per se as we go from forward to reverse by simply changing the pitch angle of the four prop blades.
It is called a Servo because it also houses the hydraulic controls that move the Pitch adjusting rod that runs down the center of the prop shaft where it connects to each prop bladed inside the hub of the prop and rotates the four prop blades in unison to whatever angle of pitch we want. A VERY cool bit of kit BUT we can’t have his Nogva Red clashing with Mr. Gee’s Gardner Burgundy now can we?? So a new paint job was required and hence the big cleanup and sanding this week. Uğur kindly helped move the Nogva to the far corner of the shipyard near where they are building the Tender so I could paint it there with the big shop doors open. Nogva smartly provided a purpose built lifting eye that is centered on the weight of the CPP so we used that to suspend it from the forklift which made it real easy to paint with no supports in the way. Christine had done a great job of cleaning and sanding as well as masking off all the rubber hoses, pressure and oil level gauges and al the instruction and labeling plates riveted to the case which made my job of painting him very quick and easy.
At least until THIS creepy single hander guy showed up!
Between us though, we soon had Mr. CPP ** resplendent in his matching Gardner Burgundy coat and ready to be lifted aboard Möbius and bolted up to the anxiously awaiting Mr. Gee next week.
** If anyone has a better suggestion for a name for Mr. Gee’s best buddy and our CPP, please add it below in a comment.
FRIDGE & FREEZER INSTALLATION
If you were with us last week you saw the initial fitting of the two 130L Door style Fridges in their Ro$ewood cabinets on the Left and the two 70L Drawer freezers on the Right. Monday morning the refrigeration team returned to charge all the compressors with their respective refrigerant; Freezers with R290 and the two Fridges with R134A. The reason for the different gasses is that the Drawer Freezers are a brand new model from Vitrifrigo and they have changed to using R290 which is a friendlier and more efficient refrigerant than the much older R134A standard in most compressors. However it is not possible to mix the two or simply change refrigerant so we have to stay with using two different refrigerants. Not that big a deal just means I need to carry a supply of each onboard to use with my vacuum pump whenever a need to fix and recharge the compressors might happen in the future. Down in the Basement, directly below the Fridge/Freezer cabinets the four 24V Danfoss/Secop compressors are now fully mounted and recharged. We ran them for a day and pulled them down to their lowest temperature settings and they all passed with flying colours. Christine and I can hardly wait to be filling these with provisions when we get ready for our Maiden passage.
SPARKS CONTINUE to FLY ABOARD Möbius
Hilmi our head “Sparkie” aka Electrician was about the only one left of Team Möbius to be working onboard this week but he was his usual busy self and persevered by powering through his still quite lengthy list of electrical jobs needing to be done before we can launch.
Interior Lighting is one of those lists and that is nearing completion as evidenced by all this bright “stars” above the SuperSalon. Each one is a fully dimmable LED so in addition to having eXtremely low amp draw they also allow us to fully control the amount of light in each space. Each LED looks the same on the outside for esthetics but they are all different on the inside for their different purposes. Some such as these task lights in the Galley are bright White and higher Lumens so the Chef always has just the right lighting when working in the Galley. Other locations of warmer light and lower Lumens to best suit the activities there. More exciting lighting up in the SkyBridge this week as Hilmi mounted and wired the LED light bars on the “ceiling” up there. Christine and I are still debating how best to finish off these surfaces of the undersides of the eight solar panels that form the roof/ceiling of the SkyBridge.
Our top priority is to keep a good cool air flow over the undersides of all the solar panels to remove the heat they generate as as heat reduces the efficiency and output of a solar panel to an eXtreme degree. However we also want this ceiling area to be attractive and in keeping with the style and esthetics of the rest of Möbius so we are pondering different ways to do this. For now however and to keep things moving forward as fast as possible we will leave this ceiling as is and go with the “industrial’ and fully functional look that is very much in keeping with the exterior of Möbius. Hilmi has installed these 50mm/2” wire trays down both sides of the center “ridge” extrusion and is also using these to hold the MC4 solar connectors. We took the KISS Keep It Safe & Simple and I believe more efficient approach to fusing each solar panel by using these MC4 solar twist lock connectors which also have 15A fuses inside them. No extra wiring, no fuse box, easy to access, what’s not to like? Speaking of Industrial and Fully Functional, Hilmi finished off the installation of these goodies on the inside frame of the big AL hatch into the Forepeak.
The box on the far Left has the plug in for the hand held remote control for the Maxwell Windlass which is hiding under the cardboard box on the Left and this handheld remote will normally be in the holder on the Right.
The large Blue receptacle is where the Forward Shore Power Cord plugs in and the box on the far Right has the requisite RCCB or Residual Current Circuit Breaker. The traditional marine “Twist & Lock” shore power plugs like this one used in North America are an abysmal design IMHO. Quite frankly they “spark” great fear in me given how poor their electrical connections between the plug blades and the socket receptacles are. Poor connections create resistance which creates heat and leads to these plugs literally burning out on almost every boat I know. I strongly suspect these Twist & Lock shore power plugs cause more boat fires than we will ever know. In any case they are forbidden on our boat and we instead use these CEE style plugs which have three round solid brass rods. For marinas which only have the Twist Lock style we carry adapters like these to adapt our CEE Blue plugs to the Twist Lock style AND these say ON THE DOCK and not on our boat! Our 220V @ 32A Shore Power cords plug into the boat at either this plug in inside the Forepeak ………….. …….. Or this one in the Aft end of the Workshop by the WT door from the Swim Platform.
These RCCP Residual Current Circuit Breakers or ELCI Equipment Leakage Circuit Interrupter are now required on all CE/ABYC compliant boats. These are very important safety devices which provide whole boat protection similar to what the GFCI circuit breakers you have, or should have, on the 120/220V plugs in bathrooms and kitchens. We are using Schneider for all our AC electrical equipment and this is the RCCB we are using which must be located immediately after the Shore Power entry into the boat, hence one in the Forepeak and one in the Workshop. One last round of exciting work from our Sparkie Hilmi is the installation of the ultrasonic Depth/Speed/Temp “triducer”. This is our last, I hope, open hole (purposeful) on Möbius so we are now fully water tight. Yeah!!! The Airmar UDST 800 is a relatively new technology for measuring Depth, speed through the water and sea temperature.
See video at the link above for a quick easy demo. The eXtremely welcome innovation is that the speed sensor has no moving parts such as the paddlewheels we’ve had to use on all previous boats which last for just hours sometimes before they foul with marine growth and stop working.
By using an Ultrasonic sensor the UDST 800 has just a smooth glass surface in the water which will rarely foul and is easily cleaned ever few months with a quick wipe. I chose the location for this forward depth transducer, we have a much more powerful and bottom discriminating sensor Aft, so that it would be inside this otherwise unused integral tank. If you peer down into the open access hatch (click to enlarge) you an see the AL pipe welded into the bottom hull plated and now the Black plastic outer housing is in place where the UDST 800 will be inserted from up here inside the Forepeak.
Why here? Well, if we should ever have a serious grounding of the bow or a collision that managed to clean off the flush transducer, however unlikely, it means that the most water we can take on is what would fill this relatively small WT compartment. Close up of the plastic housing with its very clever self closing flapper valve which allows you to pull the transducer up and out while still in the water and it will close off the gusher of water wanting to pour in while you push the blanking plug in place while you clean or maintain the UDST 800 at your leisure inside the Forepeak.
We were very disappointed and saddened to find out while I was in the hospital that Omur, who has been our Lead Cabinetmaker for the entire interior build on Möbius the past two years, is no longer working at Naval. However his craftsmanship lives on and before he left he was able to finish off the matching Rosewood drawer and door fronts in the Galley such as this bank of drawers on the peninsula by the Entryway door. Even surrounded by all the protective covering you can get a sense of the quality of Ömür’s work and how he prided himself in always being able to find the Goldilocks Just Right combination of matching grain patterns. I have learned in my short life so far that it is the little things in life that often make the big differences and these beautiful solid SS latches is one of my favorite examples onboard Möbius. Richard, one of our faithful followers, was instrumental in helping me track down the producer of these lovely latches that I had seen several years previous but could not find again.
Trying out a test mount in a scrap of plywood, you can see the nice big solid SS latch hook on the inside. On the upper inside framing around each drawer the matching SS latch plate could not be simpler or easier to install like this. Here is how they look when mounted in our drawers.
To operate you just hook your finger under the lower edge, Gently lift up against the built in spring pressure to release the latch and the drawer slides out effortlessly on the SS ball bearing Blum drawer slides hidden away below the drawer bottom. When you have gotten what you needed out of the drawer a gentle push slides the drawer back into its closed position with the automatic soft close feature of these Blum drawer slides and the drawer is again solidly latched in place. No forgetting to lock them before you head out to sea or some passing boat’s bow wave sets you rockin’ and the drawers all slide out.
More features we can’t wait to start living with aboard the Good Ship Möbius. And with that, I shall bid you adieu for this week and go rest my still somewhat tender little body for the rest of this Sunday evening. I go back to the hospital tomorrow morning for a checkup and to remove the bandages and then I should be all good to go and be fully recharged and ready for the final push to finish Möbius and get her launched ASAP.
Thanks for coming along for the ride this week and hope to see you here again next. As always PLEASE put in your comments, questions and suggestions in the “Join the Discussion” box below and add any feedback that will help me improve these weekly Progress Updates and make them more valuable and fun for you to receive.
Merhaba as we say here in Turkey, to all our faithful blog readers. Just for a change of pace, this is Christine here and I wanted to let you know that we have heard all your many requests asking for a video tour showing the current stage of construction of our new boat and home Möbius. So it is with great pleasure that we are finally able to honour your requests.
It had been a year since the last full video tour, and lots has changed for sure. Wayne just loves to talk and write – at great length – about his beloved Möbius, so one day he just took the camera and spent the next several hours walking through the boat and talking about it. That was a few weeks ago now on July 15, 2020
Wayne is far too busy working on Möbius right now to do the editing, so I took it upon myself to learn a new program (DaVinci Resolve, for those who are interested) and start my new career as the Möbius World video editor. I apologize for taking so long to get this done, but it had been a long time since I had done much video editing and the program is complex.
Also, there was A LOT of footage to take on for my first project; thanks Wayne! So I decided to divide it in half and create a two part series for you, Part I of the Exterior of Möbius and Part II of the Interior, both of which you will find below.
First, a few notes about what I’ve done to these videos so you know how best to navigate your way through these quite long videos to get at just what you want.
For those who want to skip through and just look at the portions of the video that interest you, I’ve divided the video into chapters which you can access two ways.
When viewing these videos on YouTube if you look in the text area below the video window, you will find a list of the Chapters in this video. Click on any of the topics in that list to jump directly to that Chapter in the video.
When watching the video if you hover your cursor over the bottom of the video window the timeline will appear at the bottom of each video and you will see some dashes or marks along that timeline bar where each Chapter starts/ends. If you hover your cursor over any bar a pop up text will tell you the name of that Chapter and if you click it will jump directly to that point in the video.
Here is are the lists of the Chapters in each video to give you an idea of what you will find when you watch the videos by clicking on the two video windows below.
For those who might not have seen or remember the line from the movie “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial”, this week’s title is in reference to the tag line in that film where the homesick little Extra-Terrestrial kept asking “E.T. Go Home?”. Unlike Spielberg my little friend Mr. Gee is definately not imaginary but he has been asking me the same question for a very long time now; “Mr. Gee Go Home?”. So it was a very special day on Monday this week when I got to grant Mr. Gee his wish and move him into his new home inside XPM78-01 Möbius.
While we remain very understaffed with many members of Team Möbius still working on other boats, those working on Möbius this week made great progress and we saw more exciting milestones this past week here at Naval Yachts so I’ve got lots for this Show & Tell.
Oh! And be sure to pay close attention as you go through this week’s Update as Captain Christine has more than one eXtra special surprise gifts for all of you.
So as our 4 year old granddaughter Blair likes to say “Let’s DO this!”.
Mr. Gee Goes Home!
Mr. Gee has garnered some of the most enthusiastic “fans” here on the blog, Facebook and Instagram so I guess I better lead with the star of this week’s title as we grant Mr. Gee his wish, and ours, to finally move into his new home aboard Möbius.
Let’s go back to the big day of Monday August 17th, 2020 when the move began……. Mr. Gee’s “Mom”, aka Captain Christine was on hand to supervise and help out with the big move and the first order of business was to tear down the scaffolding and plastic that we had built around Mr. Gee for the past few months to help keep him clean and be able to extract all the overspray from painting him. Uğur on the Left and Nihat left their aluminium work to help move Mr. Gee from my Workshop up on the first floor and down to the shop floor.
You observant motor heads will notice that Mr. Gee is also now sporting his exhaust, intake and cooling water manifolds and has his massive flywheel all wrapped up inside his flywheel housing where his two hind feet attach. With all this well fed help we were able to wrestle all 1200 Kg/ 2650 Lbs of Mr. Gee onto a sturdy wood pallet and used the pallet jack to push him out the Workshop door onto the balcony. We are fortunate to have access to the big Yellow “praying Mantis” type crane truck which was able to shoe horn his way into a small slot beside the sailboat “Caledonia” which is inside the scaffold tent on the far Right and the smaller paint booth on the Left.
In the center background, Möbius is anxiously awaiting the arrival of her beau Mr. Gee and the big 20m catamaran “Twinity” is in the scaffolded tent on the far Left. Taking our typical “belts & suspenders” approach, we double wrapped Mr. Gee with doubled up yellow webbing and then I added two additional Green/Red Dyneema lines which are many times the breaking strength of the webbing and tied all of that to Mr. Hook on the end of the crane which lifted Mr. Gee like he weighed nothing at all. Captain Christine was filming all this action from the balcony on the opposite side and later told me that her heart was pounding in her throat throughout the whole lift off and could barely film for shaking. Mr. Gee said he shared her concerns as he went over the edge of the balcony but it all went off without a hitch and Mr. Gee was soon flying through the air and heading home. Uğur kept a steady and reassuring hand on Mr. Gee as they moved the crane truck ………… ………. behind Möbius for Mr. Gee’s connecting flight to his final destination inside the Engine Room of Möbius. Unlike E.T., Mr. Gee didn’t need a spaceship, just this equally amazing crane that makes moving equipment like this into tight spaces easy peasy as my Canadian friends might say. It was a complex move as Naval has not yet built the sliding engine lift frame that will be used for any future needs to remove/replace Mr. Gee and his Nogva CPP Gearbox. If you look closely you will see that while the big ER Hatch opens up more than enough space for the total length of Mr. Gee AND the Nogva CPP Gearbox as a single unit, more than half of that hatch opening is underneath the cantilevered aluminium roof that extends out overtop of the Outdoor Galley on the Aft Deck. And just for one more level of difficulty, the ER Hatch is located between the two big Vent Boxes. But these preying Mantis type cranes as I refer to them, was able to do all this in two simple steps.
First lowering Mr. Gee into the aft end of the ER Hatch where we could use the chain block to drop him down further into the ER. And then using its hydraulic extendable arms the crane could slide Mr. Gee forward to the front of the ER. And we then lowered his four anxiously awaiting feet onto the beefy engine beds below. Lots of work remains of course to make all the life support connections for Mr. Gee’s water, fuel, oil, etc., drop in and bolt on the Nogva CPP Gearbox and then align the pair precisely to the flange on the CPP propeller shaft but I am eXtremely delighted to finally be able to say;
Welcome Aboard and HOME Mr. Gee!!
But WAIT!! There’s MORE!!!!
Here is the first Bonus Prize for all of you from Captain Christine who has been hard at work learning her newest video editing software and has put together this short video of Mr. Gee Goes Home.
Hope you enjoyed that and please stay tuned as Captain Christine is just warming up her video editing chops for you.
NOGVA CPP GEARBOX:
For those who might be wondering, we did not attach the Red Nogva CPP Gearbox yet because I’ve been waiting for the spray booth to be available so I can paint him to match Mr. Gee’s Burgundy colour.
So we took advantage of having the crane there to move the Nogva off the Aft Deck and down onto the shop floor by the paint booth. Sadly, this brand new Nogva CPP Gearbox has been sitting onboard Möbius since last November for some reason and so he is pretty filthy from the accumulation of ten months of shipyard detritus and will need a thorough cleaning before I sand and paint him back to new condition and worthy of becoming Mr. Gee’s partner in propulsion of Möbius.
MORE WORK on Mr. Gee
My Workshop/Office at the shipyard certainly feels very empty now but is still a great place for me to continue work on all of Mr. Gee’s peripherals such as the 24V and hand starters, two 250Ah alternators, and the copper/bronze oil & water pipeworks you can see in the back Left here. I have multiple workbenches setup including this sold woodworking bench I built in Germany back in 1983 and still serves me very well.
This week I was able to finish assembling this beautiful bronze and brass engine oil cooler so I can mount that on Mr. Gee’s Starboard/Right side and get it connected to his oil and cooling water lines. It is impossible for me to chose a favorite part of Mr. Gee but this bronze & brass beauty is right up there. As you’ve seen in previous Progress Update posts I’ve been working on this for about a month now and have all the parts fully cleaned, sandblasted and wire wheeled to fully reveal their raw natural beauty. Last week I coated them with two coats of clear polyurethane to keep them looking this way and now have it all assembled. A relatively simple heat exchanger, sea water flows through the rectangular shaped cast bronze housing made from two halves bolted together in the middle as you see here. To better answer the questions I’ve received about how this works, cold Sea Water is pumped into the large copper pipe in the upper Right foreground in the photo above and then out the downward facing 90 degree elbow in the Left background.
Engine oil is pumped in one end and out the other of this 1.5 meter/5 ft long “dimpled” brass tube which lives inside the rectangular bronze housing above with all that cool sea water flowing along its length extracting the heat from the engine oil into the sea water which is then pumped out through the Sea Chest.
The short lengths of copper tubing I’ve soldered onto the edges here are to keep this dimpled tube from sagging in the middle and keeping the water flow even. There is also a sacrificial zinc anode laying in the bottom of the rectangular housing to look after the corrosive action of the slightly dissimilar brass/bronze/copper materials that make up this engine oil cooler/heat exchanger. However I don’t think you need to understand how it works to appreciate the raw beauty of this beast which I can’t wait to show you bolted up to Mr. Gee’s Starboard side and perfectly contrasted with his Burgundy and Aluminium colours so stay tuned for that!
Gentlemen; Start Your Engine; Either Way you Want!
24 Volt Starter
With Mr. Gee now in his new home I have tried to pick up the pace on getting him up and running and for that you need a starter, or TWO in our case of course. First starter is this beast of a 24V SL5 electric starter. It seems to be in very good shape so I just want to take it apart enough to confirm that, give it a thorough clean and lube and replace any parts needed.
Removing the double nuts on the end of the shaft and the four lower through bolts allowed me to pull off this drive end of the starter and check out all the critical components of the drive gear, bushings and clutch. The other housing for the pack of clutch plates affixed to the drive shaft of the starter and the four tabs on the outer circumference of each clutch plate interlocks with the four slots in this outer housing. I learned long ago in my early days of restoring antiques and other engines, the value of taking LOTS of photos as I disassemble things for the first time and this is likely more detail than most of you would like but this is an example of how photos allow me to create my own parts and service manual by showing me clearly what all the parts are, what order and side they are assembled in, etc.. The clutch pack itself resides in the housing of the drive end that you saw me removing above. You can see the four tabs around the outer circumference that engage in the housing above and then the matching set of inner tabs on every other clutch plate. Five sets of clutch plates in all which are mounted on the inner bushing that slides along the brass drive gear you can see one end of inside the drive housing on the far Left. Apologies for the poor focus but this is the whole brass drive gear which has the clutch plates mounted on the top end and the drive gear that engages with the large ring gear on the flywheel when you activate the starter and it turns Mr. Gee on so to speak. For those of you still hanging in there on this deep dive into Mr. Gee’s electric starter, let me show you a good example of why I love and respect these Gardner engines and why Christine and I are quite willing to literally put our lives in Mr. Gee’s hands.
What do you think this grub screw in the outer drive housing is for?
Took me a bit to figure out as well but the little coil spring is a good clue. The light goes on when peering into the inside bore of the bushing and finding that long dark jelly bean shape on the Left is a thick piece of felt.
Aha! This is how you keep the starter’s bearing surfaces of the bronze drive shaft well lubricated with oil! Once a year or so, remove that grub screw, squirt in a few drops of fresh oil and put the screw back in to keep the spring pushing the oil filled felt against the shaft. Brilliant!
But wait!!! There’s more!!! Mr. Gee also has a
The original Gardner 6LXB had this optional HAND CRANK starting system and thanks to the great efforts of Michael Harrison and his staff at Gardner Marine Diesel in Canterbury England they were able to find all these original parts and that box full of Gardner Goodness arrived yesterday! To help you visualise how this hand crank starter system works, this is a photo of a different 6LXB with the hand crank fully assembled. As per the illustration above you can put the crank handle on either end of the engine and given our space constraints at the front we will put Mr. Gee’s hand crank handle on the rear. Unpacking the three boxes from Gardner Marine Spare Parts revealed all these original bits of pure Gardner goodness that I need to build a full hand starting option to Mr. Gee. It is actually going to be quite an engineering challenge that I won’t bore you with any more right now but I am busy designing a way of combining an old and a new version of the Gardner hand crank system that I’ll explain in future posts. This is the chainwheel that goes on the crankshaft and the little spring loaded lever at 2 o’clock engages with a slotted pawl on the crankshaft which the hand crank turns via the chain you see at the top here.
Enough of Gardner starters for now but for suffice it to say that for Christine and I this is an eXtremely important fail safe starting option for us to have on our single engine boat.
Alfa Laval Holding Tank
We were only able to have Cihan for a few hours this week but he was able to add this critical part, which is the waste water storage tank for the Alfa Laval MOB 303 Centrifugal Separator/Clarifier that we have on the Starboard/Right side of the Workshop beside the Day Tank. These Alfa Laval MIB 303’s are found on pretty much all large commercial ships where they are used to fully clean and clarify anything from diesel fuel to engine and hydraulic oils. They are regarded as the ultimate in fuel cleaning for their ability to take the most contaminated fluids and remove pretty much every bit of dirt, water and contaminates in a very short time. Their only downside is that they are very eXpensive but through more of our typical serendipity and good friends we were able to get a slightly used one from a super yacht in St. Martin and now have it installed on Möbius.
The aluminium tank which Cihan mounted this week is the holding tank for all the dirt and water the MIB 303 removes and we just empty it after each use for disposal net time we dock. For those interested in how these centrifugal separators work I will just leave you with the link above and these two illustrations of their basic functional principles. Bottom line for us is that we can turn the dirtiest water filled fuel there is and turn it into crystal clear diesel fuel with NO consumable filters or other elements required. Another eXtremely big deal for us and our remote use cases. Cihan also got started on plumbing our Kabola KB45 diesel boiler/water heater. Copper pipes on the Right side are for the two independent coils of water In/Out of the boiler and the stainless steel pipe above is for the exhaust gasses which connect to an insulated SS exhaust pipe that takes the hot exhaust air out through the hull.
Picking up where we left off last week, Uğur and Nihat finished their work fabricating and mounting the aluminium Antennae Arch and turned things over to the Electrical Team to start wiring this “antennae farm”. This was very much a whole Team effort with Uğur and Nihat looking after all the aluminium work and then Yusuf, Hilmi and Samet doing all the wiring. As you can see all the individual mounts are just tacked in place at this stage enough for us to put each antenna, light, camera, etc. in place and see how well the arrangement worked with regards to all their conflicting requirements and locations relative to each other. Meeting the ideal parameters each one wants in terms of their position, height, distance from each other, orientation, etc. is a classic example of the compromises that go into boat design. I would liken it to managing a birthday party for a group of young children; “I don’t want to sit beside HIM!”, “I want to be her”, “I want to be higher than that one”, etc. But by trying out various combinations we finally settled on this arrangement, starting on the far Left:
AIS antenna for em-Trak Class A AIS
Furuno GPS puck
ACR remote control pan/tilt search light
360 degree OGM 3NM Anchor light on top
225 degree OGM 3NM Steaming Light
MikroTik Groove WiFi antenna
Furuno SC33 Satellite Compass
Airmar 220WX Weather Station
VHF Whip antenna (mostly hidden from view here)
FLIR M332 stabilized Marine Hi-def Thermal camera (night vision)
AIS antenna for Standard Horizon GX6000 VHF radio
With all the positions and heights finalized Uğur welded them all in place, Nihat cleaned up the welds and the Antennae Arch was ready to be taken up onto the Aft Deck to be welded onto the Main Arch. After double checking the exact location where each of the four legs of the Antennae Arch would be welded to the Main Arch, Nihat cut in the large holes on each side where all the cables would pass through and put a nice smooth radius on all the edges. The Antennae Arch we tacked in place and the two teams, Aluminium and Electrical, put their heads together to go over the cable routing and made sure the final location worked out for both the welding, wiring and mounting of each item on the Arch before Uğur welded it all in place. Now each item could be mounted with all the proper gaskets, seals and cabling. While all the items were being physically attached to the Antennae Arch Night cut the bottom cover plates that will seal in the underside area where all the cables pass through on the Main Arch and will then do the same for the Antennae Arch so that both areas stay clean and watertight from the elements. The larger base of the Furuno FAR 1523 Radar gearbox bolts to the platform on top of the Main Arch and when flipped open as you see here, it also houses the first stage electronics for the Radar. The 20m/65ft cable has all the push/lock connectors preinstalled on both ends so it is very large in diameter and quite stiff so it needs to be installed and routed through the Main Arch tubes and all the way down to the Main Helm area.
That housing is all cast aluminium but with the large motor and all the electronics inside it still weighs 27 Kg/ 60 Lbs so Hilmi and the gang got a good workout carefully wrestling it in place on top of the Main Arch and routing the cable. Even something as seemingly simple as these SS through bolts required special care and attention as they use special non grounding grommets with seals so you can not turn the bolts to tighten, only the nuts. But Yusuf, Uğur, Hilmi and Samet working together they soon had the FAR1523 mounted and ready for the 6.5ft open array radiator/antenna to be installed a bit later. Over on the Port/Left side of the Main Arch the Standard Horizon loud hailer and the Wilson 4G wide band omni marine antennae have been mounted on the support strut for the paravane A-Frame and they are now ready to be wired as well. With everything welded and mounted it was now time for Hilmi and Samet to take over and start chasing the miles of wire and cables down through the Arch tubes on either side and then down into their various destinations inside Möbius. This is one set on the Starboard/Right side of the Arch where all the power based wiring goes to keep it well separated from all the data carrying cables which go down the tubes on the Port/Left side of the Arches. The large hinge plates that allow the Main Arch to fold down, created a bit of a challenge as to how to safely and securely route all the cables in both the Up and Down positions of the Main Arch. The idea they settled on was to run the wires as a bundle through this thick rubber hose and fit a fiberglass sealing flange to the upper hinge box. Same kind of setup on the opposite Port/Left side of the Main Arch for all the data cables though it was a bit more challenging as it uses the aft most column which are closest to the hinge pin so a much tighter radius but no match for Hilmi and Samet who soon had it all looking like this. Looking up from the shop floor I took this shot to put it all in better perspective for you as Hilmi and Samet start filling up that rubber hose with its wires and cables and getting it all stuffed inside the Arch tubes.
Trust me, you will be seeing much more of Samet & Hilmi and all the wiring they have yet to do.
Earlier in the week Samet & Hilmi had been busy doing more of the wiring for AC and DC outlets throughout the interior of the boat. They completed all the connections inside this Main DC box down in the Basement where all the high amperage cables, switches, shunts and bus bars connect the four House Battery Banks to their primary loads and distribute the DC power to the forward and aft DC Boxes in the Forepeak and Aft Workshop. For lower amperage 12 and 24 Volt loads I’m using these neat little fused junction boxes throughout the boat, upper one here for 12V and lower for 24V. This pair on the Starboard/Right side of the Workshop are mounted aft of the electrical junction box for the Delfin Watermaker.
You may have noticed in the photo above that they have also now mounted the AC receptacles for 120V and 230V at the bottom Left of the Watermaker box and these too are found throughout each compartment of Möbius. Industrial style light switches are also now starting to appear throughout the non-living spaces such as this one you can see on the bottom Left of the stairs which turns on the LED lights in the ceiling of the Basement.
Just a quick update for you on some of the various interior details which are now showing up such as these Ultra Leather cushions in the Dinette Settee. The lighting does not do justice to the great smoky blue colour Christine picked out for these cushions so you’ll just have to wait until we launch and have proper sunshine coming in through all those windows but you get the idea. Up above the Main Entrance doorway and stairs, Omur has been busy finishing the FastMount panels that go around those walls and ceiling. Looking from the opposite direction when standing in the Entryway Door, Omur is measuring up the panel sizes for that Port/Left side wall panel and you can also see he has the removable L-shaped cover in the upper corner of the overhead Entryway. This cover will soon be upholstered in matching Blue/Green leather and inside will be home to a bunch of electronics such as network switches, Axios video decoder, N2K multi-port blocks and connections for cables going into the SkyBridge Helm Station out of sight on the other side of the Right wall in this photo. Down at the bottom of those stairs in the Corridor Office area, Omur is finishing the installation of those wall panels including the recently snapped in place leather covered panels underneath the marble countertop/ workbench.
Brrrrrrr, it’s Cccccccold inside!
I suspect that most of you can guess what’s going on here?
Correct! The refrigeration company has arrived to look putting in the copper tubing for the remote mounted compressors for the pair of large upright Vitrifrigo door fridges and their matching pair of freezer drawers. While Hilmi and Samet are busy lengthening all the wiring between the Fridge/Freezer units and the compressors, Omur is busy up on the Port side of the Galley putting in the extra 50mm / 2” of insulation that wraps around all 5 sides of each Fridge/Freezer. Meanwhile, down in the Basement the refrigeration guys are busy mounting the four Danfoss compressors to this rack above the coffer dams. Now the insulation wrapped copper lines coming out of each compressor down below, can be carefully routed up through their penetrations in the floor and in through the holes in the back of their respective cabinets …….. ……………….. where they can now be soldered onto the copper lines coming out of each Fridge/Freezer like this. Once soldered together these copper lines are wrapped in new EPDM foam insulation and carefully routed in the area behind each cabinet. Enough extra length of copper tubing will be coiled up behind each unit to allow them to be pulled out in the future for any repairs or maintenance. Here is a quick look in behind the Fridge cabinets to see how the insulated coper lines will be run along the sides and eventually zip tied to the cable trays once everything is all complete and working. The backs of the cabinets will also be sealed to keep them air tight and have marine plywood backs installed.
Can’t wait to show you all these units fully installed next week.
DAVIT ARCH CONSTRUCTION BEGINS:
This stack of CNC aluminium plate showed up this week and can you guess what it will soon become? The subtitle tells part of the story, the upper 20mm / 5/8” plate has all the CNC cut parts for the hinged mounting foundations for the Davit system which will bring the Tender On/Off of the Port/Left side of the Aft Deck and In/out of the water.
FYI; The rest of the CNC cut plates underneath are all the parts for our 5 meter/ 16/4 ft jet drive Tender!
But the Davit goes first and the this recently arrived stack of AL pipe will be used to construct the ladder style double tube Davit Arch. This quick and dirty rendering of the Davit system shows how the overall system will work. There will be two separate Raise/Lower systems both made using Dyneema line on 6:1 Garhauer blocks and clutches going to Lewmar winches. One system will look after Raising/Lowering the Davit Arch itself and the second system will Raise/Lower the Tender from the Arch. This is the only rendering I have time to grab right now and it was from when Yigit and I were first designing and testing the Davit Arch model so much has changed since then such as the orientation of the laddered Davit Arch and the Tender design but it will help show how the Davit moves the Tender On/Off the Aft Deck. The design of this Tender Davit System is the result of a LOT of prior experiences launching and retrieving dinghies and LOTS of thought and experimentation with these 3D models but I am VERY happy with the end result which I believe will be one of the safest, fault tolerant and easiest Davit systems we have ever known. Stay tuned for the real world testing after launch to confirm all this really works!
Nihat and Uğur waste no time getting started and soon have the 50mm / 2” connector/ladder tubes all cut in the background and the extruded aluminium elbows cut at their final angles and chamfered edges for full penetration welding. Our student intern Omer is really learning a lot and enjoying the whole experience of working with us on this new project as Uğur starts prepping the 20mm pieces he has removed from the CNC cut plate that will become the hinged bases for the Davit. I designed the Davit Arch to be three independent parts so it will be easy for Christine and I to disassemble and store on the Aft Deck when we are in Hunkered Down or Canal mode with the whole SkyBridge roof lowered. Simply done by putting in these double Blue 20mm joiner plated which will be bolted together. Nihat has tacked two of those joiner plates together to keep make it easy to cut them to shape and now drill out the six bolt holes in each pair of joiner plates. And he soon has all four joiner plates and the other hinge plates all drilled and edges radiused or chamfered for welding. Simple yet very strong and effective construction allows Uğur to quickly tack up these two vertical legs of the Davit Arch. KISS design continues with simple slots cut into the bottoms of each Davit Arch pipe where the hinge plates will be inserted and welded. Like this. Flipping the vertical legs upside down atop their joiner plates …. …… makes it easy to align them and tack them in place. And the two vertical legs are all tacked up and checked for alignment and ready for final welding. Uğur begins the fabrication of the horizontal upper beam by laying out the angle where the elbows connect the angled 90mm / 3.5” pipes to the upper ladder beam. Fabrication of this Upper Beam goes quickly with the KISS design.
Note that Uğur has inserted short lengths of inner reinforcing pipe to strengthen the joint between the angled pipes and the elbows. Which end up looking like this. And does the same thing at the other end of the short angled connecting pipes of the Upper Beam. The fully assembled Davit Arch can now be tacked together. Bottoms of the Arch pipes are closed off. And now the whole assembly can be checked for perfect alignment and square and ready to be fully welded up and taken up to the Aft Deck next week. And that’s another week gone by and hopefully another week closer to launching XPM78-01 Möbius.
Captain Christine has two more Bonus Gifts for all of you but I’m going to keep you waiting just a wee bit longer for those to post but I think you’ll agree that they are worth the wait.
In the meantime, I hope you enjoyed this week’s XPM78-01 Möbius Progress Update and if you did or didn’t please let me know one way or the other and add any other comments or questions in the “Join the Discussion” box below.
Our first full 5 day work week for Team Möbius in a long time plus another full day for Hilmi and I yesterday (Saturday) so much more to share with you for this week’s Progress Update report. Several new jobs began this week, new aluminium arrived, Mr. Gee got some much needed TLC and then we did have the “runaway” incident as per this week’s title.
AND, compliments of Captain Christine there is a bonus surprise video embedded along the way below!
So grab your favorite beverage and strap yourself into your comfy chair and let’s jump right into this week’s Show & Tell here at Naval Yachts.
Miss Möbius Tries to Runaway from Home!
Our little girl “Miss Möbius” has been growing up quickly over the past two years and based on her behavior this week I’m thinking that “boat years” must be like “dog years” as she seems to have become a teenager. How else to explain that earlier this week she tried to make a run for the sea and run away from home?!?
Or maybe, like her owners, she just got frustrated by the ever changing Launch Date?
Or maybe her big Nose Cone sniffed the smell of the sea blowing through the shipyard with the big winds we had on Monday and decided to make a run for it?
Whatever the reason she somehow had managed to conspire with her new best friend, 56 Wheeled Wanda, the second biggest boat mover in the Free Zone, to come pick her up and they were headed out the door when Captain Christine caught wind of their plan and tried to block them from leaving. Alas, the barn doors were wide open and there was no stopping them and they were off and running for the sea.
OK, OK, just kidding.
The real reason is that a big new refit and stretch job on a 36 meter/120 ft yacht is arriving at Naval on Tuesday and they need the entire length of the bay Möbius has been in so they needed to move us out and over to the opposite side of the shipyard. We’ve been storing all the major equipment yet to be installed down on the floor underneath Möbius so that all had to be moved first. Everyone pitched in and the forklift helped out and it was soon all clear below. Uğur and Nihat put in four longer supports that went all the way up to the rub rails so they could cut off the shorter ones to give room for ………….. ……….. 52 Wheeled Wanda to slid her two rails full of hydraulic jack stands all the way under the anxiously awaiting Miss Möbius. Each dual set of wheels have one set of hydraulic cylinders that can turn them to a very steep angle that allows them to move the boat sideways. Every other set of axels have their own hydraulic drive motors built into their hub to power the wheels forward or back. The two side rails are locked together using the big cross tie rails you can see here. The whole boat mover is completely self contained and this single diesel motor powers a very large hydraulic pump pushing high pressure hydraulic fluid down all those steel lines you see extending down the upper area of the side rails. And all this is run by a radio remote control unit that you can see hanging from the neck of Wanda’s operator standing on the left of Nihat here.
And just like that, the whole bay is now empty and ready to be VERY fully filled up with the new 36 meter job to take its place this coming week. We couldn’t stop Miss Möbius entirely but we were able to thwart her escape and redirect her back into the shipyard two bays over and what should be her new home until it really is time to have Wanda help us take the fully finished Möbius to the sea!
Now the moving process is reversed and the steel stands are moved back in place under the length of the central Keel Bar to support Miss Möbius so that Wanda can set her down and leave. The side stands are welded back in place and the concrete floor is drilled for long steel pins and lag bolts to keep her upright.
And we can say “Bye Bye, See you soon” to Wanda until we need her again on Launch Day. Möbius’ new “bay mate” is “Twinity”, a 20 meter/ 65 ft catamaran who’s height and width make Möbius look positively diminutive but she’s the Just Right size for us. For some perspective and sense of scale I shot this photo looking the length of the shipyard from one floor up in my Workshop. Möbius used to be in the empty bay on the very far Right here and now sits in the background by the big bay doors. the other ship tented in plastic in the foreground is “Caledonia” an all steel sailboat that should have her launch date next month sometime. Up on Möbius for the first time in her new home, we hope that she is a bit more content with her big nose cone as close to the doors as possible so she can keep enjoying those fresh breezes blowing in from the launch harbour a few block away. And hopefully no more than a few months away!!!!
But Wait!!!! There’s more!!!!
We have heard all your many requests to have more video content of this whole process and so Captain Christine has been spending a lot of time in the past month getting up to speed on some new video editing software she really likes and she will be using this to create some more video for us to post here with all the “spare time” she has between the 7 day work weeks we are both logging to try to get Möbius finished and launched.
We both did our best to shoot some video of Moving Möbius and so here is a time lapse video Christine just put together. Hope you enjoy it.
New aluminium arrivals mean new jobs so can you guess what this pile of pipe is for?
Two new jobs actually, first as you’re about to see is building the new “mini arch” or Antennae Arch that sets atop of the Main Arch to provide a “roll bar” kind of protection around the 2m/6.5’ open array Furuno FAR1523 Radar antennae and also provide all the real estate for the myriad of different antennae, GPS, weather station, satellite compass, search light, etc.. With all the various roles I’ve taken on for the build in the past few months, time is in limited supply so I just created this quick hand sketch of the design I came up with for the new Antennae Arch and the critical placement of each bit of kit that mounts on it.
I’m not sure how legible this will be (click to enlarge) but here is the list of each numbered item on the Antennae Arch.
Designing this Antennae Arch and the placement of each item is perhaps one of the best examples of how much compromise is a big part of design in that almost every one of these items has its own quite strict set of requirements for placement relative to how high it is, how much above/below its neighbors, how close to centerline, etc. Of course most of them would like to be an “only child” and be the highest of them all with no one else nearby so you quickly realise that you just have to prioritise each item’s requirements and then do a triage type process of putting each item in the best position possible.
Christine and I spent two days putting our heads together to come up with this eventual layout and I’m sure it could be improved upon even further but we think this is at least good enough for now and we will see how it all works in the real world once we launch and start using all this equipment and we can make changes from there. We’ve had a list for what we call “Rev 2” and “Rev 3” with the changes or improvements we would like to make in the coming years so we’ll just add these to those lists.
Once they had Möbius moved Nihat and Uğur dove right into that pile of pipes and elbows and started to build the Antennae Arch. The elbows needed to be altered a bit as the angle of the corner of the arch is greater than 90 degrees so that’s what Nihat is up to here. The ends of each pipe and elbow are bevelled to create a deep V for maximum penetration of the weld and then tacked in place. The first of the dual mini arches that will be built to match the Main Arch they will be welded to the top of. Like this. We are using this ladder type construction in several places on Möbius; the Main Arch as you have seen for a long time and now this mini-arch that goes on top and soon you will see this same construction on the second new job that some of this new aluminium pipe is for, but I’ll keep that for next week.
We went back and forth on whether to just have the interconnecting ladder pipes all the way across the top or to put in a solid plate and decided that the plate was best as it creates a well protected wire chase to run all the many wires and co-ax cables from all the antennae and other equipment. Uğur has framed in the bottom for two plates that will be bolted and sealed in place to help protect the wiring further. And here is the completed Antennae Arch. Yusuf on the far Left, Nihat and Uğur and I then put our heads together to work out the details of all the different mounts that need to be created for each item on the Antennae Arch. With so many different antennae and items to be mounted on this Arch, the numbering of each item was very helpful to keep them all straight and provide an easy shorthand for what was what. This is where we finished up on Friday so I will show you the whole antennae farm next week.
Nogva CPP Propeller Blades
While everyone else was busy prepping to move Möbius I took on the other job that needed to be done before the move which was to reassemble the Nogva CPP propeller blades. You may recall from previous posts many months ago that we removed the CPP (Controllable Pitch Propeller) blades and hub when we were cutting the hole in the Rudder that enables us to remove the whole prop shaft without having to remove the Rudder. Now the whole CPP propeller hub & blades needed to be reassembled now which is a fairly straightforward process as these CPP mechanisms are eXtremely simple but they are also very high precision fit and have critical rubber O-ring seals that need to be put in place just right. Each of the four prop blades are a single piece CNC milled from a solid billet of special bronze alloy which weigh about 20kg/45 lbs so they are a bit unwieldly to handle and get them to slide into the high tolerance fit into the hub. Like this. Uğur helped me in the beginning until he had to go look after moving Möbius so we thoroughly cleaned each part, put on a lots of new grease. Fortunately, there were two excellent student interns working at Naval this past month, Omer on the Left and Alp on the Right, and they were eager to learn about how CPP props work so they joined in and helped wrestle each very slippery and heavy prop blade into position. If you look closely in the photos above (click to enlarge any photo) you can see that each prop blade fits into a slot in the hub so they can’t fall out and will stay in place once they have been fully slid into place. Then the hub end can be slid in place to capture the other half of each blade and this is then torqued down with some thread locker on each of the 8 bolts. And Voila! Miss Möbius has her CPP prop all good to go. Viewed from the forward side looking aft you can see how there prop shaft itself is fully enclosed within the outer aluminium collar with the holes in it which thus prevents any errant ropes or fishing nets from wrapping around the prop shaft. The holes are where the water injected into the far forward end of the prop shaft exits back to the sea and keeps the prop shaft fully protected by fresh seawater inside the prop shaft log tube.
Kobelt Hydraulic Steering Oil Tanks
Last week we covered Uğur and Nihat building the two header tanks for the hydraulic oil supply to the Kobelt steering pumps.
This is the larger of the two tanks which I designed to hold about 52L/14 USG of oil to keep these two Accu-Steer HPU400 auto pilot pumps well fed and I was able to design it to fit just perfectly into the space above these pumps. This is a combination sight gauge and thermometer that makes it quick and easy to check the temperature and level of the hydraulic oil inside. And we recessed this filler pipe and vent cap into the wall on the hinge side of the Watertight door from the Swim Platform into the Workshop so it is easy to access but not in your way as you walk in and out. This is the small little 1.5 liter header tank on the Left that keeps the bronze Kobelt manual steering pump on the Right full of hydraulic oil. I was able to design this tank to fit nicely into the space underneath of the Main Helm Dashboard which hinges up out of the way for access and Cihan soon had this tank all mounted and plumbed into the Kobelt hydraulic system.
Speaking of our head Plumber Cihan, he was back on Team Möbius this week thankfully and was busy installing several other systems on Möbius including the equipment for the shower on the Swim Platform. Christine had picked up this very high quality bronze mixing valve at Ikea and Cihan soon had fabricated a bracket and mounted it up above the top of the Haz Mat locker where it will be super easy to access when needed yet well protected from the elements when not in use. Next week he will finish plumbing the Red/Blue Hot/Cold PEX water lines and the hand held shower wand. The large White wrapped hose is the supply for the Fire Hose that will also live here inside the Haz Mat locker. These long delayed Whale Gulper 220 Grey Water pumps finally arrived so Cihan was busy installing one of them in the Forepeak and one in the Basement where they will be used to pump out the contents of the Grey Water tanks to the exiting Sea Chests. NOTE: In practice we don’t use these very much as we almost always let the Grey Water from showers and sink drains go straight back to sea but when we do use the GW tanks in a marina for example, these pumps let us empty them next time we are out at sea.
Cihan also had time this past week to finish plumbing both of the VacuFlush toilets. This one is in the Guest Head and is now fully plumbed for the Fresh Water flushing water and supply water for the Bidet as well as the exiting Black Water. Ditto for this one in the Master Cabin Head.
These are both quite exciting milestones for Christine and me as they represent a new stage of the build as we move into such finishing work. And just outside the Master Head the pièce de résistance of Cihan’s work this past week was the installation of this bit of beauty; our Vanity Sink at the very front end of our Master Cabin. This unique sink is made from a solid clear glass casting which then has a iridescent coating of these beautiful blues. The drain cap is still wrapped in its protective film so it is normally adding its glimmering polished stainless steel glow to the whole look. And we think this faucet we found is equally unique and the perfect Goldilocks match for the sink it supplies.
There is a matching rectangular version of this sink and faucet in the Main Head/Bathroom where the all White walls create a complimentary yet different look. Can’t wait to see and share that with you in the next week or so once the Corian countertop is installed in the Head.
Back on the other side of the Vanity Sink the White gelcoat cabinetry is also getting closer to being finished. Bottom doors are now mounted on the Blum hinges and the countertop awaits the Corian that we hope will arrive in the next week or so.
The removable Teak floors for this Head and Shower as well as the Guest Shower are being finished up as well so I hope to be able to show you them being installed next week. Moving Aft to show you the recent progress in the Corridor which connects to the Guest Cabin off to the Left outside of this photo and then through the WT door into the Workshop and Engine Room in the upper Left background.
The area on the Port/Left Hull on the far Right of this photo will be my Office and “clean room” workbench which now has this gorgeous hunk of Turkish quarried Turquoise marble now in place. We ended up with a double order of this fabulous marble so I decided to use some of it in place of the Corian countertop we had originally specified. Should make an eXcellent working surface for me with plenty of storage drawers and cupboards above and below.
Seen from the other end just inside the WT Workshop door, you can see the large Aft Electrical panel full of circuit breakers for all four voltages; 12 & 24VDC and 120 & 230VAC is on the far Left side of the stairs leading up to the Galley and SuperSalon. This electrical panel will eventually be enclosed with an large labelled front panel and a hinged Rosewood and glass door. Upstairs looking Aft at the Galley, Omur has continued his relentless work to complete all the Rosewood cabinetry throughout Möbius. In front of the Galley our Dinette Settee is also nearing completion. Next up will be building and installing the large table here. That will be fun to show you as it moves in all three axis; Up/Down Z axis as well as fore/aft X axis and side to side Y axis as well as able to be rotated in any of these positions. Might sound excessive but it is “little details” like this which add so much joy to our lives when we are able to get things like table height and position just right, just for us as we use this table for everything from our main dining table, an office table for the two of us, a coffee table when relaxing and a bed when we have more guests than our cabins can sleep.
If you can see through the clutter of the work going on here you can see how this forward end of the SuperSalon is also starting to take shape. The large Rosewood slotted panel on the far Left will be hinged inside the opening behind it where the 50” SmarTV mounts. Helm Chair goes in the center of the Main Helm where all those wires are being tamed and then the stairs down the Master Cabin on the far Right.
ELECTRIC & ELECTRONICS:
As you can see, Hilmi has also been making good progress with his electrical work at the Main Helm. This week he and Selim have been busy wiring up the switch panel on the angled wall above the Forward Electrical Panel as well as the various controls mounted in the Dashboard of the Main Helm. The Furuno 711C AutoPilot control head is under that Gray protective cover in the center of the Dashboard with the Jog Lever to its Right and then the dual Kobelt control levers for Throttle and CPP Pitch on the far Right with the round Prop Pitch gauge above. Maxwell windlass control above the Jog Lever and the empty hole soon to be filled with the Vetus Bow Thruster joystick and the ACR Pan/Tilt searchlight in the upper Right corner. Lifting up the hinged Dashboard reveals more of Hilmi’s work as he starts to connect all those items as well as filling the Grey wire chases with the many wires that need to traverse from one side of the Main Helm to the other. This “handkerchief” triangular storage area is on the Port/Left side of the Main Helm with a matching on on the opposite side. We intend to use this one for a central Charging Station for the growing list of wireless electrical items that need charging. The two black panels you see in the back of this storage area are blocks of fused 12 & 24 VDC connections using Anderson PowerPole connectors to give us a single standard for all our 12 & 24 volt connections.
The rectangular hole is for the 120 & 230VAC receptacles.
More progress inside and behind this Forward Electrical Panel on the Right side of the Main Helm with the addition of the white mounted shunt, one of three, which is required for measuring current amps in this panel. Above the Fwd Electrical Panel Hilmi and Selim completed most of the wiring of the switchboards up on this angled top. The underside of the lower switch board shows the ready access to all this wiring. Top side shows the layout of all these switches. They are divided into the upper12 switches that control the High Water evacuation system which we hope we never need to use but is in just the right place here at Command Central if we ever do need it.
The bottom set of switches are for the exterior lighting and the labels should make that all self explanatory.
The uppermost switch panel has all the switches for controlling the Kobelt steering and propulsion equipment. To the untrained eye this may still look like a Medusa hairdoo but for those who have been following along and know wiring this is a “Beautiful Mess”!
Still in the early stages of wiring all these switches but Hilmi’s skills and attention to detail is already emerging on these two switch panels. Always a Team effort so Omur installed this multi pin socket into the top of this Rosewood switch panel where the Kobelt WalkAbout handheld remote control plugs in. A metal cap threads onto this socket when not in use. For a much more finished look, rather than install this receptacle from the top we decided to have Omur recess it in from the bottom with this mortise. This will give you an early idea of how these three switch plates will look in the end. And finishing up with this weeks electrical progress, the aft depth sounder has now been mounted inside the aluminium fairing block you saw Uğur making and welding in place a few weeks ago. This is the Airmar 600 Watt 520-5PSD transducer which provides the raw data of the bottom below us to the Furuno BBDS1 Bottom Discriminating sounder which gives us detailed graphics of the contours and material below us.
Uğur and Nihat were also able to get to this small but important job of providing external access to the inside of this Port/Left side Vent Box on the Aft Deck. The White plastic fitting below its mounting hole provides an easy to remove but fully sealed opening that I can reach through to …… …… access this shut off air damper on the Air Supply into the Engine Room. Normally this shut off is fully automated and controlled by an thermostatic switch that closes this damper when the engine is off or if there were to ever be a fire in the Engine Room. However in case this electrically automated motor should fail, you can activate this damper manually. Peering down the 3 meter rectangular supply air duct into the Engine room to show where this damper is bolted to the top.
Same damper setup is on the opposite side Vent Box for shutting off the Exhaust Air extraction vent.
Putting Humpty Dumpty (aka Mr. Gee) Back Together Again!
Another exciting milestone this week was that I finally started to put all of Mr. Gee’s bits and bobs back together again. After many months of doing all the prep work of cleaning, replacing, rebuilding, painting , etc. I was finally able to start actually assembling all those parts and putting Mr. Gee back together again in his better than factory new condition.
I know this is not of interest to many of you so feel free to skip ahead to the end while I take the others on a quick tour of Mr. Gee’s transition.
As you can see Mr. Gee is now all painted in his final colours of Burgundy Red for all the cast iron parts and silicone based aluminium paint for all the cast aluminium parts. This past week I was able to tackle the next metal parts; all the copper and bronze pipework which transports all of Mr. Gee’s the coolant water and oil to where it needs to go.
As you can perhaps tell from this photo I started by using paint removing gel and then sandblasting all these parts thoroughly to remove the almost 50 years of accumulated paint, grease, oil and dirt. I considered going with the quite nice matt lustre left from the fine sandblasting sand but after some experimentation I decided that a brighter look left from wire wheeling the copper and brass, which you can see the beginnings of here, was more in keeping with the finished look I thought most befitting of Mr. Gee and Möbius’ Engine Room. So I brought out my full compliment of WMD’s, Weapons of Mass Denuding, including wire wheels of various sizes in my angle grinder, benchtop grinder and Dremel tool and spent several days and knights bringing all these copper pipes and their bronze end fittings to an even bright lustre. Keeping this beautiful bright look was the next challenge as copper, brass and bronze all tend to oxidize quite quickly and loose this look. So I cleaned them all up with acetone to remove all the leftover grime from wire wheeling and my fingerprints, hung them all from poles spanning the ceiling of the paint booth I had created and sprayed them with 2 separate coasts of clear AlexSeal polyurethane which I have had great success with for many years. The photos fail to capture how great this clear coat worked but I am eXtremely pleased with both the look and how well protected these surfaces all are now and for the next few decades. If you were here last week you might remember that I had given Mr. Gee himself two coats of the same clear polyurethane so he too is now very nicely all plastic coated. While much of this is just cosmetic there is a very real pragmatic benefit I’ve found with having such surfaces on my engines and mechanical parts which is that I can see any leaks or even loosening nuts SO much sooner and these surfaces are all SO much easier to keep clean so I was quite willing to put in all this extra time, effort and expense. Plus, quite frankly, Mr. Gee and me are worth it! A few weeks ago I had found the time to clean and paint Mr. Gee’s massive, almost 150 Kg flywheel so I had Uğur lift it up to my Workshop using the forklift Where I could then use my handy dandy 2 ton hydraulic lift to finally install the flywheel on the end of the crankshaft. Which in turn let me bolt the outer flywheel housing onto Mr. Gee.
Next week we will move Mr. Gee onto the Aft Deck of Möbius where I can then bolt the Nogva CPP Gearbox to the SAE1 flywheel housing to complete the full propulsion package. You can see the SAE14 flange I have now bolted to the flywheel and each of those inner semi cylindrical cogs will mate with the rubber drive ring on the Nogva Gearbox.
When I was cleaning and painting the flywheel I masked off the six sets of markings on the outer circumference of the flywheel and now you can see why. This little window on the top of the flywheel housing allows me to precisely set Mr. Gee to TDC (Top Dead Center) for each cylinder which you need to do to set the exact timing of the open/close of the valves and the timing and advance of the fuel injection.
Now the fun begins as I carefully remove all the masking taped areas and started installing things like the two cast aluminium valve covers, upper cast aluminium water manifolds on each cylinder head and the single manifold on the bottom of the cylinder block. Followed by the Intake and Exhaust manifolds on this same Starboard/Right side of Mr. Gee. Test fitting the dual thermostat housing on the end of the front water manifold and the coolant header tank. Next week I hope to start populating this Port/Left side with all its gear including the whole fuel pump and injection system which mounts to those two circular clamps you see here. BTW, for those who would find it interesting, this is Mr. Gee’s “service side” where you do most of the day to day work when starting and maintaining him as this is where things like the decompression levers, fuel priming levers, water pump, fuel pump, oil dipstick, temperature and pressure gauges for oil and coolant, etc. Hence this is the side where I located the door into the Engine room and have the most access on this side as you will soon see when we mount Mr. Gee into his new home and Engine Room.
If you made it this far I hope you took my advise to get a good beverage and comfy seat or you stopped along the way to do so. I really do appreciate you taking the time to follow along and join Christine and I on this latest adventure and we both look forward to getting your feedback with the questions and comments you put in the “Join the Discussion” box below.
Last week was another 4 day work week due to Monday being the final day of the big 4 day long Eid al-Adha holiday here in Turkey and to exacerbate the impact on XPM78-01 Möbius the push at Naval Yachts to finish and launch two other boats continues so most of Team Möbius were reassigned to help out with those two projects. However progress was made none the less as Hilmi, Selim, Christine and yours truly worked a full day yesterday (Saturday) so we turned it into a 5 day work week after all so I still have exciting progress to share with you in this week’s Show & Tell Progress Update so let’s just right into that.
Sparkies Keep the Flame Burning Aboard Möbius
Our one and only “Sparkie” aka Electrician Hilmi who is now ably assisted by the young and flinty (sorry couldn’t resist) Selim worked all four days this week and were also on the job all day Saturday with Christine and I so there has been lots of good progress on the many electrical jobs still needing to be completed.
Most of the wires and cables going into Möbius are already pulled but with literally miles of wiring in total even the remaining “little bit” is a lot. Seen here, Selim is pulling some of the remaining cables coming up through the floor from the Basement into the Main Helm for all the controls, switches and electronics there. Further back on the Aft Port side of the SuperSalon Hilmi and Selim took on one of the more challenging wire pulls with these cables that come up through the hollow in the window I-beams to get past the glass windows and up to the Upper Helm in the SkyBridge. A closer look peeking between some of these cables shows how these hollows in the massive 10mm / 3/8” thick aluminium I-Beams on either side of each window provide a just right channel for the cables to transit.
For those of you wondering why these I-Beams are so strong and thick, this quick render with all the outer plating removed shows how these Window I-Beams are part of each of the 23 full frames that make up the “skeleton” of the hull framing. These frames are spaced 1 meter apart and are about 4-5 times what is required by classification standards for Open Ocean class boats.
They need to be this thick and strong as they carry the full load from the superstructure of the Pilot House framing and transfer it down to the framing below. Bonus Points: By using this I-Beam construction we also gained a built in wire chase every meter!
The cables exit the top of the I-Beam and feed into the Port side of this “doghouse” over top of the Entryway where the stairs take you from the Aft Deck down into the SuperSalon, and run up and then across to the Right side of this overhead electronics box and then …. …….. feed into the Upper Helm through this AL penetration tube.
After we are sure all the wires are in and everything has been tested and working, all these penetrations will be filled with special sealing compound to make them fully watertight.
Below the glass windows, the cables they are pulling here come up through these two removable panels that provide access to the Fuel Fill & Vent hoses on the Port hull beside the stairs going down to the Corridor. There are cables for both AC and DC wiring at the Upper Helm as well as some N2K and ethernet wiring.
We refer to the cupboard partly visible in the very bottom Right corner as the “internet Alcove”.
Which which is the scene of more cable pulling this week, mostly consisting of the creamy white CAT-7 ethernet cables seen on the bottom Left. The black box with all the antennae on the Left is our PepWave Max Transit Duo and black boxes on the Right rear corner are three of our Ethernet switches.
The White & Green box in the Left background is an outlier here as it is the main control or “brain box” for our In-Floor Heating system.
Courtesy of Steve Mitchel who singlehandedly runs the incredibly valuable marine electronics SeaBits blog, those of you wanting to do a deep dive into some of the latest and greatest routers for maximum cellular and WiFi connectivity should be sure to check out THIS Seabits article from Steve. Christine and I are both huge fans of “Seabits Steve” as we refer to him almost daily as we anxiously await his latest posting to learn from.
FYI: We purchased our PepWave Max Transit quite awhile back so it is not the model behind this CAT 18 upgrade but still provides us with pretty awemazing connections to shoreside cellular signals and gives us a full WiFi bubble everywhere on Möbius. The PepWave Max Transit series is built for use on busses, ferries and hence the “Transit” name so these are eXtremely robust and powerful routers which form the heart of our cellular/WiFi setup on Möbius.
At the bottom of the stairs in the Corridor where my “Clean room” workbench and office reside, Hilmi and Selim have mounted these two Furuno 711C AutoPilot FAP-7002 Processor Black Boxes. The small Red unit Right of center is our ActiSense NGW-1 NMEA2000 Gateway and the little Blue box above is another Multi-Port 4 port box for N2K drop cables coming off the central N2K backbone.
Continuing our tour of the Port/Left side hull, if you look up to your Right as you go through the WT door at the end of the Corridor and enter the Workshop, you will see that Hilmi has now pretty much finished making all the connections for the N2K network cables including Multi-Port boxes such as the Blue/Purple one here on the far Left, Maretron Black Boxes for sensors from Maretron fuel & water tanks and other monitoring sensors. The two boxes on the far Right are the larger ActiSense EMU-1 box which puts the old analog data from Mr. Gee onto our N2K network so we can monitor and log things like temperature, pressure and levels of engine oil, water and CPP oil and RPM,
And finally for this week, if we go up front of the SuperSalon and down the stairs into the Master Cabin we find that Hilmi & Selim have been busy installing the indirect LED lights in the stair nosing and under each toe kick area. Looks like this when standing on the stairs heading into the Master Cabin. And like this up at the very front where the Vanity sink sits on the far Left and the full wall full of cabinets along the Port side of the hull.
All lights on Möbius are LED and all interior lights, direct and indirect are all on dimmers so the lighting can always be adjust to get it Just Right for any situation.
FYI; The colour of this indirect lighting looks very Green in all my photos which I think is due to them mixing with the big work lights illuminating all the rooms but they are all soft white in reality and have a very pleasing visual effect as well as a big safety factor.
Hydraulic Steering Tanks:
Upon reading the manufacturer’s requirements and doing some math, a new main tank for the Kobelt hydraulic steering oil was required to meet their minimum 45L/12 USG capacity, so I fired up Autodesk’s Fusion 360 and came up with this design for a slightly oversize 53L / 14 USG tank that was the Goldilocks size and shape to fit just right overtop of the two Accu-Steer HPU400 steering pumps at the Aft end of the Workshop. Uğur and Nihat were able to steal away from those other boats for a few hours on Thursday and Friday so I had the dimensioned drawings ready and waiting for them to quickly fabricate this rectangular tank and a small cylindrical header tank for the Kobelt manual hydraulic steering pump at the Main Helm. I KISS’ed the design (Keep It Simple & Safe) to make it quick and easy to build and Nihat and Uğur are an excellent team and they had the tanks fabricated in no time.
These two “holey” inner plates we see Uğur welding here, provide baffles to reduce the free surface effect caused when any tank or a compartment is partially filled, the motion of the liquid due to the ship’s rolling and pitching motions would reduce the stability of the ship.
Nihat helping me do a quick test fit and determine the just right location for the tank and its mounts overtop of the two Kobelt Accu-Steer HPU400 hydraulic pumps and their respective hoses and valves underneath. I was able to design this filler pipe to just fit into the cavity behind the AlucoBond wall panelling on the hinge side of the WT door where it will be easy to access but well out of the way as you walk in/out. Uğur fabricated and welded these 15mm / 5/8” thick bosses or pads to add enough thickness for the pipe threads for the hydraulic fittings for the supply and return lines. I added these two short pipes inside where the two supply fittings go to keep any dirt or debris that might sneak into the tank from getting out.
There are also oil filters on the supply lines to keep the hydraulic oil meticulously clean so this is just some added protection for the extremely small tolerances of the hydraulic pumps and cylinders. After a VERY thorough cleaning up of all the interior of the tank, Uğur could finish the tank by welding the top on. Those are slot welds he is laying down here which go through to the top edges of the baffle plates. Kobelt requires a small header tank for their manual hydraulic steering pumps which is what we have at the Main Helm as an emergency backup should the double hydraulic AutoPilot systems ever both go down. So I designed this very simple 1.5L tank that was just the right size and shape to fit out of the way underneath the Dashboard of the Main Helm. Short length of 120mm OD aluminium pipe worked out just right. Simple plate ends welded on to create the tank. Minutes later, Uğur had it all welded up and ready for Cihan our Master Plumber to cut the NPT pipe threads in the supply and return pipes on the side. The larger 50mm pipe on the top is to fill this tank and check fluid levels.
Both tanks now ready to be mounted next week. One other small job they knocked off in a few minutes this week was welding these two hinges for the frame ….. …….. that holds the three solar panels on the front roof of the Pilot House. This is how this front solar bank looks from the Foredeck when it is in the Passage Making mode. (Aft panel removed here for welding the hinges you see above) Using a short wooden support to show about how this Forward solar bank pivots on those aft hinges so the panels are horizontal or the optimal angle to keep them close to perpendicular to the sun.
But wait! There’s more ……………………. Look what is at the Aft end of this wind tunnel formed by the bank of solar panels when they are propped up! Yup, that’s a large mist eliminator grill that feeds directly into the big air plenum …… in the ceiling of the center of the SuperSalon with these five vent tubes which will have adjustable diffusers in them to control and direct the air flow. As you can imagine, given the size of this “wind tunnel” formed when this bank of solar panels is propped up while we are anchored, even the slightest breeze will produce plenty of clean fresh air into the SuperSalon.
But wait! There’s more! ………………. There are an additional five vents with diffusers up at the very front as well directly overtop of the Main Helm. If you look closely (click to enlarge any photo) you will be able to see a series of slots cut into the overhang of the roof immediately in front of the center window where the negatively raked windows create a high pressure area which feeds fresh breezes into this forward set of air vents.
As I’ve pointe out previously, ventilation is such a critical factor for a comfortable and safe passage maker that we literally started designing the ventilation system and then built the boat around that. This is the result and we will always be very well ventilated. I received quite a few questions in the past asking for details on the solar panels we sourced directly from the manufacturer, Lightech Solar in China so here are shots of the labels with all those details for you.
The front 3 panels are the 295 Pmax Watts and the other 11 panels are the 320 Pmax Watt panels.
Cables each have MC4 connectors which we will soon connect using MC4 in-line fuses.
One other bit of progress this week was that Orhan, our Teak specialist, finished building the three removable floor panels that go in the Master & Guest showers and the Master Bathroom/Head.
The bottom surfaces of these lift out floors will be fiberglass to reduce any mold forming in this wet area. Similar to the way he does solid Teak decking on other yachts, Orhan cuts these grooves along the edges of the individual Teak boards and then fills these with Black Sikaflex caulking. A task made MUCH faster and easier using this pneumatic powered caulking gun! He was only able to get these first three grooves in one floor panel by end of the work day on Friday but once he has all the grooves caulked the whole panel will be sanded down flat and flush. We don’t allow any teak or any other woods or paint or stainless on the exterior in order to minimize maintenance but we thought this little bit of nautical teak “decking” would work work well in our showers.
Mr. Gee’s Coats of Many Colours
As I’m about to show you, it was a bit of the “three steps forward, two steps back” waltz with Mr. Gee and myself this week but that’s still one step of forward progress right?
One of the steps forward was getting the massive cast aluminium oil “pan” or Sump all put together and installed on Mr. Gee. In addition to being eXtremely strong and weighing in at a svelte 45kg / 100 Lbs (my best guess as I can just barely lift it by myself) this baby holds 30 Liters/ 8 USG of engine oil in this deep sump at the aft end of the Gardner 6LXB. I had previously given this a very thorough cleaning with the sandblaster and then flushed, cleaned and painted it with silicone based aluminium heat paint. Last step was to now reinstall the wire screens you see resting on the far end. These wire mesh grates bolt to this grid and would catch any large particles that might somehow fall into the sump and prevent them from getting down into the oil in sump before it is pumped out through all the oil galleries in the engine.
Note the same kind of baffling here to reduce that Free Surface Effect mentioned in building the hydraulic tanks. Next step forward was to wrestle the now fully assembled Sump off my workbench and in place underneath Mr. Gee.
FYI: It is averaging about 38C/100F most days here now so I consider this “dance step” to be part of my weigh loss campaign to keep my girlish figure! Gardner specifies RTV High Temp silicone for this joint and it is my preferred gasket making compound so that’s what I used to seal this Oil Bump to Crankcase joint.
You can see the wire mesh grates installed inside and the oil pump pickup pipe extending down through a special spring loaded fitting on the upper Right. The taped off holes are for the bronze pipes for pickups, dipstick tube, etc.. I used two hydraulic jacks underneath the Oil Sump to help me raise it slowly into place which is a bit tricky as there are ten studs and the oil pickup tube that all have to align just right but I soon had the Sump back where it belonged and Mr. Gee’s once again had his bottom end all covered up, so he was happy too. 42 bolts and studs later with some Loctite thread locker and the Oil Sump was all torqued up to just right tightness. The “2 steps back” part of this week’s dance with Mr. Gee began when I took on repainting all of his cast aluminium parts. Several months ago as you may remember seeing in previous posts, I had painted all these cast aluminium parts with some special high heat silicone paint that is basically aluminium powder suspended in clear liquid silicone.
It seemed to work eXtremely well in terms of coverage and the look of “real aluminium”. However I discovered too late that the aluminium is a bit too “real” and that even when fully cured the surface is raw aluminium dust so every time you touch it your fingers are covered wtih a light coating of the aluminium and the surfaces do not clean up well. No problem he thought, just apply a good coat or two of clear epoxy and you will end up with a nice smooth, shiny, impervious outer “shell”. In the time since though some areas had been banged up or had to be sanded down for mounts and other work so I needed to reapply another coat of this aluminium paint.
No problem right? The clear coat had worked well going on top of the aluminium paint so you would think that doing the reverse, putting the aluminium paint on top of some of the clear should be no problem right?
Soon after applying the new coat of aluminium silicone paint, this began to happen! For some reason the new coat of aluminium silicone paint reacted where the clear epoxy was. Yikes! Talk about two steps back! No going back now so I resigned myself to the laborious task of immediately removing most of the paint on these very uneven surfaces and repainting them all over again. The paint was fresh enough that I found I could blast much of it off using a very high pressure compressed air nozzle which got me about a third of the way and then I had to resort to other weapons of mass reduction such as wire wheels, grinding disks and LOTS of hand sanding.
Oh, and did I happen to mention that is was a 40C/104F day?
So back to my weight loss regime and two days later I had masked off the upper cast iron cylinder block and heads and shot poor Mr. Gee with another full coat of aluminium silicone paint.
3 steps forward in that it looked pretty good.as you see here. But 2 steps back on closer inspection!
If you click to enlarge and zoom in on the far Left side here you will see that Mr. Gee has some rather wrinkly skin. Seems that I didn’t do quite as good a job of removing ALL that clear coat. However I was out of time now and so hopefully Mr. Gee and the Gardner Gods will forgive me for this less than ideal paint job and I proceeded to finish the whole paint job. I needed to put on a second coat of the Burgundy epoxy paint on the upper cast iron cylinder block and heads so I removed all the masking I had put on them while doing the aluminium paint dance and then masked off all the bottom aluminium parts and gave the previous Burgundy paint a light hand sanding. Fortunately this dance went very well as it was now working with familiar all epoxy paints and soon had Mr. Gee’ fully fitted with his new Burgundy coat. I still needed to do something about that new coat of “raw aluminium” paint or else Mr. Gee was not going to stay looking too dapper for too long so I turned to a clear coat I had lots of good experience with, AlexSeal Premium Topcoat 501 Clear and did some extensive experimentation by applying coats to some test pieces I had sprayed with the aluminium silicone paint. Enough with the 2 steps backwards!
This final clear coat of Clear Premium Topcoat 501 over top of both the Burgundy epoxy and the aluminium silicone paints worked GREAT, matching my experience using AlexSeal for almost 20 years now. Live and learn, Go with what you know! I also prepped these other aluminium parts such as the intake manifold, coolant water header tank and many other bits and bobs by sandblasting, priming and then painting them all with the aluminium silicone paint so they were all ready for their final coat of clear AlexSeal in one final Last Dance for this week. I wanted to do as much clear coating as possible so I also took the time to prep all these other parts, some cast aluminium such as the cooling water manifolds, thermostat housing AND …………. These solid cast bronze beauties which are the two halves of Mr. Gee’s engine oil cooling heat exchanger. Call me crazy, (and you’d right), but these start out as dull clunky Beasts and then after some thorough sand blasting and lots of wire wheeling, transform into some of the most Beautiful engine parts I’ve ever seen.
Oh, and I ran out of time this week so I did not even get to all the bronze and copper pipes and tubes which connect to these Bronze Beauties and other parts of Mr. Gee so you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!
Stay tuned for more of my dances with Mr. Gee and hopefully more steps forward than back in the weeks to come. Oh, and for those of you still waiting for an explanation of that reference to “Mr. Gee’s standing ovation on all four feet” check out this photo and several others above and see that the answer has been staring right at you…………
Yup, Mr. Gee is now standing on his very own on all four of his anti-vibration engine feet! How else was he going to be able to dance with me??????? OK, till next week, this is your XPM78-01 Möbius cub reporter signing off with thanks for taking the time to join us for this week’s Show & Tell. See you again next week I hope and PLEASE be encouraged to write your comments and questions in the “Join the Discussion” box below.