Our Bottom is Slippery & Sleek! XPM78-01 Möbius Update 18-23 April, 2022

After our wonderful time with friends John & Genna last week and our chance to get out on anchor again, it was back to boat work this week.  Our annual contract at Setur Marinas includes a haul out and so we decided to take advantage of that to see how everything under the waterline has fared over the past year in the water.  Spoiler alert; everything below the WL was in great shape and we were eXtremely happy with the silicone based foul release bottom paint we decided to use.  Here are the details of this very busy past week.

Haul Out

PXL_20220418_070501780First thing Monday morning we moved Möbius over to the Travel Lift bay here at Finike Marina.
PXL_20220418_070734297The slings dropped down into the water in front of the Bow as the Travel lift moved back.
PXL_20220418_071606111And up out of the water we came. 
PXL_20220418_072457607.MPLooking pretty good after 11 months in the water with almost no movement.  The typical “sea grass” and green slime up around the Boot Stripe and a bit of growth on the bottom paint itself.
PXL_20220418_072143020Prop is also looking pretty clean with just a bit of growth around the base of the blades at the hub.  This area would get the least amount of self cleaning turbulence when the prop is spinning so makes sense that we might see some growth here.
PXL_20220418_083614139.MPWe designed the Rub Rails with this situation in mind and the underside makes a strong solid pocket for the support poles to lock into.
PXL_20220418_084115876.MPSome blocks under the keel bar running the length of the boat and the Travel Lift was good to go and we could get to work cleaning up the bottom and inspecting everything under the waterline
PXL_20220418_121150650.MPThis was a good indicator of how easy it was going to be to clean the bottom paint.  Just the contact with the web straps on the Travel Lift was enough to completely brush off all the growth.
PXL_20220418_083824528Another good sign that a small patch of harder growth on the bottom of the Keel Bar came off in my fingers.
PXL_20220418_072134299.MPEach of the zinc anodes also had a bit of harder growth on them but this too came off very easily with a lift of my fingernail or a plastic spreader.
PXL_20220418_093823311I got out a bucket of water and a sponge and after a few swipes with the sponge the growth came off and the silicone bottom paint was as clean and shiny as new.
PXL_20220418_121140416I just kept going with the sponge and this is what it looked like in less than 30 minutes.
PXL_20220418_144333747Christine tackled the prop and rudder with similar fast results.  It was a very warm sunny day and the dirty water from sponging would evaporate quite quickly and leave this kind of residue behind but this was easy to rinse off with a spray nozzle on the water hose.
PXL_20220419_145800372Bow thruster tunnel and plastic blades also cleaned up very quickly which was another very pleasant result for us compared to any of our previous boats
PXL_20220418_144236815By the end of the day we had finished the Starboard side and would get back to the Port side in the morning.
PXL_20220419_145720353And that was it!  Two days of work and we had a super clean and slick bottom and some VERY big smiles on our faces seeing how easy it was going to be to keep the bottom of Möbius’ hull clean, smooth and slippery.


For other boat owners who are interested in more details on this fabulous bottom paint we used you can read all the details and see how it was applied in THIS previous post from last year. 

This type of bottom paint is referred to as “Foul Release” rather than Anti Foul and it is basically a coating of silicone that is sprayed over typical good quality epoxy primer and base coats using an airless sprayer.  It is basically the same as what some of you might know as “Prop Speed” that is commonly used to keep propellers clean. 

We chose International’s version called InterSleek 1100SR and as you can see this was one of the best choices we made.  Having cleaned a LOT of hulls in our many years of sailing this silicone based foul release paint is the best we have ever seen by a very large margin.  I simply don’t know or understand why this type of bottom paint is so unknown in the recreational boat market but it is very commonly used by military, cargo and super yachts so is not hard to find if you ask.  Given our experience after about 14 months of use, we could not imagine using anything else in the future and can give this our highest recommendation to other boaters to consider.  it has an estimated life of 5-7 years so we will continue to report on how this paint performs over the next few years but at this point we are unbelievably happy with our choice and how well it meets our low maintenance priority.

PXL_20220421_065442524Two days later we were back in the water and back to our dock to finish up other remaining boat jobs so we can finally cut the dock lines and head out to sea.

Fixing the TreadMaster

PXL_20220420_122240974One of those jobs was redoing the TreadMaster that covers all our decks.  The epoxy that had been used to glue the TreadMaster to the aluminium deck surfaces had not stuck and most of the corners were starting to lift and become both a trip hazard and unsightly.  Naval sent up a crew of guys who carefully separated each panel of TreadMaster from the deck, sanded the AL deck surfaces clean, primed it and put down a layer of Bostic primer and then used Bostik Simson MSR adhesive to reattach each panel.
PXL_20220420_122301460They got about 70% of the decks done and will be back again Monday morning to finish the rest and we will have nice solid non skid decks again.

Rigging the Davit and Tender

Once back at the dock I got busy installing all the rigging for the Davit Arch that will allow us to launch and retrieve our Tender Mobli.

PXL_20220421_140257181I’ve got a long and successful experience on previous boats with Garhauer rigging hardware so went with them again.  These are the triple blocks that will lift Mobli Up/Down inside the Davit Arch.
PXL_20220421_140423548.MPLike this.
PXL_20220421_140305348From the top triple block the Dyneema line goes through a turning block on the inside corner of the Arch.
PXL_20220421_141753548And then down to a manual Lewmar 40 winch.
PXL_20220421_141850258A Dyneema bridle connects to the bottom triple block and then extends down to …..
PXL_20220421_141858103.MP…… one of these welded in eyes in each corner of the hull.  Makes it very easy to clip the bridle on/off the Tender.
PXL_20220422_103126585Same setup for the bridle at the Bow.

This rigging is what we will use to lift the Tender Up/Down inside the arch to raise it up off the Aft Deck and then down into the water on the side when launching.  Retrieval is the reverse sequence.
PXL_20220422_103145894The second rigging is to allow the Arch to rotate off to the Port side so that the Tender moves off the Aft Deck and out to clear the sides so Mobli can be lowered down into the water.  Here I have installed the bridal for this that you can see in the middle of the Arch.
PXL_20220422_114802065From the top of the Arch, the line runs over to a turning block on the Stbd side then …
PXL_20220422_114808734… back up to another turning block on the bridle, back down through one more turning block that takes the line over to the Lewmar 65 electric winch.
PXL_20220422_120205781Belaying the line out allows the Arch to rotate out and over the Port side.
PXL_20220422_120328198.MPLike this except the Tender would be hanging from those two Up/Down lines you saw earlier.
PXL_20220422_120340168Next time we are out at anchor and have enough room beside us, we’ll do our first launch of Mobli and see who the whole system works.  A work in progress I’m sure and as with many of our systems we will use it for some months to learn how it works and how we can improve it.  We may want to modify this to be all electric perhaps or even consider going with a hydraulic crane but for now this simple manual setup should work well we hope.
PXL_20220424_120630298Baris and Dincer at Naval Yachts sent up this lovely surprise gift with the TreadMaster crew this week.  Four lovely hand painted tiles of famous Turkish boats of the past and a beautiful hand made Turkish ”evil eye” to help keep us, Mobli and Möbius safe.  Now we are trying to decide on the best place to showcase this much appreciated gift.  Thanks Naval!

And that wraps up our busy week over here as the days get warmer and warmer and we already feel summer weather coming our way.  Thanks for tuning in again this week, be sure to add your comments and questions in the “Join the Discussion” box below and hope you’ll be back again to join us for next week’s adventures.

-Wayne

Möbius World Update 21-27 February, 2022

It was a busy week for both Christine and me but nothing too blogworthy so this week’s Möbius update will be short for a change.

I just returned to Möbius last night after spending most of the week in England.  This was my first trip for 2022 and a nice change of pace for me.  It has proven to take a LOT of time, energy and $$ to get parts shipped from England to us here in Turkey so I decided it was best to go pick up the new parts I needed for Mr. Gee in person from Gardner Marine Diesel and bring them back with me.  To be honest, I will take just about any reason to make a trip to GMD and see Michael, James and David there so it was an easy decision.  To make it even more compelling, Pegasus Airlines has very cheap flights twice a week between Antalya and London so my entire trip would cost less than the customs duties to ship the parts to me and would take at least a month, sometimes two to get here.  The icing on the cake for me was the chance to get in a visit with a very good friend Robin and his wonderful wife Jayne.  Robin and I first met when we were both fairly new to Autodesk back in about 1990 and have continue to grow our friendship over all those years.  My thanks to Robin and Jayne for opening their home and hearts in welcoming me to stay with them and we had a delightful three days hanging out and catching up.

My outbound flight was very early in the morning so we decided to rent a car and spend the night in a fun little hotel not far from the airport and enjoyed a nice “date night” out at a great little family restaurant right across from the hotel.  Christine was then able to do some shopping for groceries and other items that are much more available at the larger stores and malls in Antalya and then drive back to our small town of Finike so it all worked out very well..

XPM78-02 Vanguard

PXL_20220222_142255189.MPWe also took advantage of being back in Antalya to stop by the Free Zone and Naval Yachts to see the progress on the several new builds they have underway.  XPM78-02 mv Vanguard is now looking very much like a boat now that the superstructure for the Pilot House is in place.
PXL_20220222_133417321The other build is for the larger XPM85-01 which is in the early stages of the ‘hotworks’ and after a long wait due to supply chain and other issues, all the aluminium plates and parts have been delivered.  These boats are built upside down in this first stage until all the hull plating is welded in place and then the hull is flipped right way up.
PXL_20220222_133437155The upside down deck plates are first put together in the steel framework bolted to the floor and then frames and bulkheads are tacked in place.
PXL_20220222_133609778Meanwhile, over on Vanguard, Uğur and Nihat,  who did most of the AL work on Möbius are now busy welding the hundreds of Al pieces in place.  You can see some of the cut and rolled plates for the keels setting on the floor to the Left.
PXL_20220222_133733490XPM78-02 is based on the same design as Möbius but will have twin JD engines as you can see from the dual prop tunnels in these two photos.
PXL_20220222_133950173The aft deck will be slightly larger and the Owners have decided to build some of the furniture into the boat such as this L-shaped dining area.  Large window behind it, WT door into the SuperSalon in the middle and stairs up to the SkyBridge on the Right.

PXL_20220222_134249421.MPHere is the view from inside the SuperSalon looking back out onto the Aft Deck.


PXL_20220222_135621094Going up those stairs the SkyBridge is starting to take shape and more built in furniture with an other L-shaped settee at the Aft end.
PXL_20220222_135657791Peering down from the very Aft end of the FlyBridge and roof overtop of the Aft Deck you can see the same arrangement as on Möbius with the doghouse for walking into the Engine Room on the Left and matching winding stairs on both sides.
PXL_20220222_135651209Looking up and aft lets you see another view of the upside down XPM85.
PXL_20220222_134238410Back down to Deck level on Vanguard, you can see another owner driven change with the addition of these bulwarks running most of the length of the side decks.

PXL_20220222_135809781.MPBulwarks run all the way up to and around the Anchor Deck and bow.
PXL_20220222_135905798Up at the Bow the “sidewinder” anchor setup is the same as we designed for Möbius along with the Samson Post in the center and nose cone in the very front.  This setup has proven to work out eXtremely well on Möbius so has been replicated here on hull #2.  You can see how Dennis has nicely designed the Bow and anchoring arrangements to now include the wrap around bulwarks.

XPM78-01 Möbius

IMG_1431Lest we should forget the Mighty Möbius, I will leave you with THIS LINK to a series of photos that Captain Christine put together while I was off in Gardner Land in the UK this past week. 
IMG_1655Christine went through some of our archives of thousands of photos over the past 6 months or so and put the ones she liked into this album.
IMG_1581So if you’ve been Jonesing to see less of the Engine Room and all the detailed technical shots that I post and more of the interior and exterior of Möbius, click the link above and enjoy your tour through this collection.
Thanks for taking time to join us here again this week and hope you’ll be back again next Sunday for the latest weekly update on what’s been going on in Möbius.World. 

Special thanks to all of you who have been contributing your questions and comments in the “Join the Discussion” box below and please keep them coming!

-Wayne

The Artnautica Family Continues to Grow XPM78-01 Möbius 6-11 Sept. 2021

Our lives aboard Möbius have settled into the same pattern of working our way through the list of jobs needing to be finished before Möbius is fully sea worth and ready for us to get back to crossing oceans and eXploring the salt water world we both love so much.  This work is far from “glamorous” or eXciting, just neccessary and a pattern we are accustomed to from our decades being full time live aboards and stewards of many boats before.

What IS eXtremely eXciting is the arrival of more and more members of our family of XPM style boats from the desk of our beloved Naval Architect and designer, Dennis Harjamaa who runs Artnautica Yacht Design in Auckland NZ.  So let me provide a bit of background to help put this all in context.

Finding our Goldilocks NA and Designer for XPM78-01 Möbius

Back in 2016 when Christine and I got serious about switching from sail to power and designing and building our own new “Goldilocks” just right, just for us passage maker, we spent a year searching the world for our equally Goldilocks NA.  There are a LOT of Naval Architects and boat design firms but what made our search so challenging was that we did not want to be just clients the designer worked FOR and end up with a boat design that was based on what the designer thought was best.  Instead we wanted a designer who would work WITH us in a highly collaborative way to transform the very specific visions and specifications which we knew well from all our nautical smiles at sea.  It took us almost a year and a lot of both nautical and air miles but we finally found and met up with Dennis when we had our previous boat in New Zealand and we knew right away that we had finally found our Goldilocks guy.

Winding the clock back a few years more, somewhere around 2010, after designing a lot of very successful smaller boats, Dennis set out to design the Goldilocks boat for himself and his partner Raquel to live aboard and enable them to start exploring the world by sea. 
LRC 58 render from siteWhat he came up with was the LRC58 which you see rendered here and hull #1 called “Koti” has been their full time home near Auckland since it launched in 2013. 


LRC 58 tech specs screen shotSince then FIVE more LRC58’s have launched from the Aluboot yard in the Netherlands and you can read all about them HERE on the Artnautica.EU website.
But wait!  There’s more!!!
LRC 58 photo from Artnautica web site

Not only did Dennis design the LRC58, he also built her almost single handedly!  So now you are starting to understand why Dennis was and still is to this day our Goldilocks XPM designer!

The XPM Line of Boats Begins

Christine and I found the LRC name to be too generic and overused in the boating world and so we came up with the more specific eXtreme eXploration Passage Maker or XPM title to better suit this unique style of boats and therefore Möbius became hull #1 of the new XPM78 design.

PGL sketch 58We spent almost two years working with Dennis in what quickly became a collaborative work of art and engineering and resulted in the completed 3D model and drawings that were used by Naval Yachts to build XPM78-01 Möbius.
 Möbius in IcelandThis is a relatively new style of boat which do not yet have a common name or acronym but are all designed and built for a small but growing group of like minded people with a common set of priorities and use cases.  They are most often a couple, sometimes with a child or two, who want to be able to have a floating home that can carry them across oceans and eXplore the most remote spots on the planet and do so with the highest degree of safety, comfort, efficiency and low maintenance. 
2_13Such requirements tend to determine the overall characteristics of these boats so they are long, slender and slippery all aluminium hulls that are low to the water, self righting and efficient to run with as low amount of maintenance as possible to operate.

Since designing our XPM78-01 Möbius, more and more people have been intrigued by what Dennis calls his LRC or Long Range Cruising boats and have sought him out to design a Goldilocks version of an XPM for them and that’s what brings us to this post.

Over the years as more people became aware of our work building Möbius and chronicling it all with these weekly blog posts, Christine and I have been fielding more and more requests by people wanting to know more about these XPM boats,  In spite of my Emails being even longer than my blog posts, some of these people have been brave enough to keep asking questions and receiving more and more of my novellas aka Emails as their interest grew.  In several cases this has led to them coming to meet with us for lengthy tours of Möbius, Naval Yachts and the Antalya Free Zone and as you’re about to see, in several cases this ultimately led to several signing on the dotted line with Artnautica and Naval to design and build an XPM for them.

XPM78-02 Vanguard

WhatsApp Image 2021-09-07 at 8.26.40 PMThe first are an American couple, Chris and Sebrina and their son Rhys who not only endured hundreds of pages of my Emails but they also very courageously flew over to Antalya last December and we spent several days with them aboard Möbius as she was nearing the end of her build and showing them around Antalya and Naval Yachts.  Apparently they liked what they saw as a few months later they had signed on with Artnautica and Naval to design and build what is now hull # 2 XPM78-02 Vanguard. 

These are some relatively recent renders of how hull #2 has evolved.
Vanguard rendering 4 Jan 2021You can see the XPM78 family resemblance and she is based on the same models as Möbius.  However Chris & Sebrina worked with Artnautica and Naval on some important modifications to make this the just right, just for them, XPM78.
Vanguard rendering 1 Jan 2021Keen eyed followers might notice that the Pilot House has been lengthened by about 1 from aka 1 meter which is a change that we recommended as well for all future XPM78’s.  More significantly and perhaps controversial, the Pilot House has also been raised by about the same amount to enable the area underneath to become living space that includes a 3rd cabin.
Some of the other key changes that Vanguard will have include:

  • Twin John Deer 4045 engines with double prop tunnels to keep the draft down.
  • electric hybrid propulsion by Praxis added to the propulsion from twin JD diesel engines
  • addition of a 3rd cabin
  • extending the PH as noted above to make the salon in particular more roomy.
  • raise the PH to convert what is the Basement on Möbius to all living space on Vanguard.
  • bulwarks wrapping around the side and bow decks
  • windows in the sides of the hull

Some will love those changes, others will question but all that matters is that this is what’s best for Chris, Sebrina and Rhys.

WhatsApp Image 2021-09-07 at 8.28.22 PMThere are a growing number of designs similar to these XPM’s from other companies that have appeared in the past couple of years but almost none of these have gone on to be built.  So pictures like this are a big deal IMHO!


PXL_20210505_140504218

Construction at Naval began in April and matches the way Möbius was built.  A steel frame is built on the shop floor and then the hull is built upside down on top of this.  For the curious, if you go back to posts here starting around April 2018 you can see when Möbius was at this same point and follow the construction from there if you’d like to look into the future of the building of Vanguard.
WhatsApp Image 2021-09-07 at 8.27.35 PMThis is the most recent photo I received from Chris which I think was taken a few weeks ago at the end of August.

I believe Chris and/or Naval will soon be creating a blog to cover this build and I’ll be sure to pass that on here for those interested.

XPM85-01

Artnautica LRC83 10Not to be outdone, another couple, Andrew and Lily, also from the USA have recently signed on with Artnautica and Naval to build XPM hull #3 and this one will be much larger at 85’ LOA. 
Artnautica LRC83 11Covid travel restrictions have not allowed us to meet in person yet, but Christine and I have had some video calls with Andrew and Lily and they too have been subjected to my barrage of Emails as I attempt to answer all their questions. 
WhatsApp Image 2021-09-07 at 8.29.05 PMUnfortunately as you may have heard in the news, there has also been a Covid related shortage in the world’s aluminium supply so work on both XPM78-02 and XPM85-01 has been delayed but Naval has been busy getting ready for the aluminium to arrive by building the steel support structure that XPM85 will be built upon.

Dennis and Naval are still working with Andrew to finalize the design so I don’t have much more to show you yet but will bring you updates when I get them and we could not be more eXcited for Andrew & Lily as their dreams are transformed into very real aluminium.
But wait!  There is still MORE!!

Meanwhile, in the Netherlands

lrc58-july-2017-78-1 LaunchAs if these new XPM builds were not enough eXcitement for one blog post, things have been equally as busy or more so over in the LRC world of Artnautica.  Somewhere around 2018 Dennis was in conversation with the owner of LRC58-03 Britt which launched from the Aluboot yard in July 2017
BrittRob Westermann and his wife Janet have been touring the many waterways surrounding the Netherlands and their conversations with Dennis soon resulted in Rob setting up Artnautica Europe.  Rob and I first met at the big METS marine trade show in Amsterdam back in 2018 and have gone on to become very good friends who have visited with us in Antalya several times. 
Rob is eXtremely bright and entrepreneurial and he has been a great partner with Dennis to extend and expand the LRC line of boats being built in the Netherlands as well.

Rob & Janet enjoyed their life aboard Britt so much that they decided they wanted not only more time but more boat and so began a conversation and a whole new design process that has now culminated in the LRC65 which will become the new home for them to continue to explore Europe and the world. 

FYI, LRC58-03 Britt is therefore now for sale and can find out more about that and how to contact Rob HERE.

LRC65-01 Britt II

lrc65-008-a-general-arrangementAs you can imagine, Covid restrictions are doing their best to get in the way of getting LRC65-01 off the drawing board and into the build, but Rob is tenacious and very experienced so he was able to get in an order for some aluminium just as the supply was drying up and they expect to begin construction in about a month. 
lrc65-010-a-general-arrangement-6

Dennis & Rob have created two layout versions GA 5 and GA 6 have each with different galley, settee, and helm station positions, as well as a different position of the staircase leading forward. This could be interchangeable between the two layout options.
LRC65-June-2021 - 5mmAs you can see here in this rendering of the framework of LRC65, the LRC/XPM boat similarities are much more than just skin deep. 
PGL sketch 67Here is a similar shot of Mobius’ framework.  When you peel away the outer aluminium plating, the familiar Artnautica framing signature is very clear to see.

LRC65 sketch 37There will be several propulsion options for the LRC65; twins of either Beta 75 or John Deere 4045 DTF 70 (80hp). The single-engine option will have a turbocharged four-cylinder, 130-160hp engine, likely supplied by SABB who make the CPP gearbox of choice and can therefore supply the whole driveline (Deutz, Iveco, and AGCO Sisu).

Cruise speed is 10 knots.

All the specifications for the LRC65 can be found HERE on the Artnautica.eu web site.

Phwew!!!  That was quite the tour of the XPM Family Tree! 

IMG_1581Coming around the XPM world full circle, I will leave you with this photo of the very first XPM, our beloved Möbius.


Hope you enjoyed the tour and if you have any questions or would like to consider creating your own XPM just let me know in the “Join the Discussion” box below or send me an Email to us at wayne.christine@mobius.world

-Wayne

How & Why We Make Our Decisions Part 2 XPM78-01 Möbius 9-14 Aug, 2021

Last week in the post called How & Why do we make all our Decisions on Designing, Building and outfitting XPM78-01 Möbius? I covered how we developed and use our set of four founding or first principles to base all our decisions upon.  We refer to these four pillars as SCEM which stands for Safety, Comfort, Efficiency and Maintenance (lack of).

SCEM boxWe don’t use SCEM as filters per se, we use them to keep us on track, keep our priorities straight, by reminding us of what our fundamental values are for this boat.  When doing our due diligence and research on some potential piece of equipment It is all too easy to get attracted or distracted by things like cool features or just the sheer number of choices and so as we go through our decision making we are constantly circling back through SCEM to make sure these fundamental requirements are being met.


This week in this Part 2 of our decision making process, I will do my best to summarize the more specific criteria we use to ultimately make our final decisions upon.  I will cover this as a series of the following questions that we ask and answer to our satisfaction at least, as we evaluate each bit of kit and then use these to make our call.

  • What problem is this item attempting to solve?
  • Is the problem/item a want or a need?  
  • Consequences of adding this item?  Domino effect?
  • Does it pass the Goldilocks test? 
  • New vs Tried & True?

What problem is this item attempting to solve?

Might sound like a silly question at first but it is surprising how often answering this question provides the most help in in our evaluation of a design decision or of a given piece of equipment.  Let me use our decision of what battery type to use for our House Battery Bank to illustrate but one example of how valuable this question was. 

To put this question into context, keep in mind that Möbius is a completely Battery Based Boat, meaning that ALL of our onboard electrical power comes from our House Battery Bank and therefore this is one of THE most critical systems on the boat and one that in some cases our lives can depend upon.  For an XPM or any true eXpedition boat that is going to be able to carry us safely and comfortably to locations across the full spectrum of eXtremes of climate and remoteness, we need to be as self sufficient as possible and so our onboard electrical power rates right up there alongside diesel fuel and fresh (potable) water as a critical requirement.  An XPM type boat is designed to spend the majority of its time at anchor or at sea, in our case often for months at a time, so in all our design and equipment decisions, we assume that we will have no shore based resources such as shore power, stores, shipping, airports, etc.. 

XPM Electrical System w 4 Batt BanksFinally, for a bit more context, let me add that we have also chosen to not have an independent generator onboard so ALL of our four voltages, 12 & 24 Volt DC and 120 & 230 Volt AC, come from our House Battery Bank.  Most of the time we keep our batteries charged via our 4.48kW array of 14 320W Solar Panels and when underway we have 12-14kW available from the two eXtremely robust 250A @ 28V Electrodyne alternators which Mr. Gee keeps spinning.
One of the very first decisions we needed to make to chose our batteries was what type or chemistry of batteries would be the Goldilocks just right, just for us House Batteries?  I’m not going to go over this in any detail here but these are the five battery types we had to chose from:

  • FLA;  Flooded Lead Acid
  • AGM:  Absorbed Glass Matt
  • GEL: 
  • Carbon Foam
  • Lithium

Many of you and others we talked to, thought for sure that the choice was obvious; go with Lithium and we did consider them, and all the other types, very thoroughly.  But it was that question of “What problem is this trying to solve” that made it clear that Lithium was not the best choice for us and that’s the story I’d like to elaborate on here a bit.

Victron Gel-OPzV-1000ah-batteriesOur battery decision making started at the very beginning of our design process, around 2016, and in some ways we designed and built the boat around the House Batteries. For the first few years, we thought we would go with GEL based OPzV batteries such as this one.

These OPxV type batteries are eXtremely robust and often referred to as “traction batteries” as they are used in things like all electric forklifts in warehouses so they had good cycle life and good resistance to sulfation and other features that wold make them a good choice for Möbius.

During this time we were reading more and more about Lithium batteries and we were seeing more and more people who were choosing to go with them so we also spent a good bit of time researching the various types and makes of Lithium, primarily LiFePO4 or Lithium Iron.  This relatively new type of battery was said to have a lot of amazing features with the top ones being longer lasting (more cycle life), ability to accept much higher charging rates thus take less time to charge, but perhaps the biggest feature was their much higher energy density.  This means that you get much more usable Watts from the same amount of space and weight compared to what you would get from other battery types.  Said another way, you could get the same amount of energy out of a much smaller size and lighter battery bank.

As the months and years went by, these claims were validated more and more and we saw the steady increase of Lithium Iron being the batteries of choice for more and more boats so it seemed like the choice was clear right?  However when we applied our criteria and use case and asked the “What problem is Lithium trying to solve?” question, we realized that we didn’t have the same “problems” as most of these other boats such as size and weight of our House Batteries. 

My earlier comment that we had designed the boat around our House Battery Bank is not that far off as we had designed the hull to take maximum advantage of the characteristics of our original consideration of OPzV batteries which were very large and very heavy.  Each OPzV 2/4V cell measured 215mm/8.5” Wide x 277mm/10.9” Deep x 855mm/33.6” High and weighed 110kg/242lbs each, and we needed 24 of these! 
FireFly House battery bankAs we often do, we turned this “bug” into a feature and built four large battery compartments into the framing of the bottom of the hull such that each compartment straddled the 25mm thick x 350mm high keel bar running down the centerline of the hull.  By positioning these battery compartments on the very bottom and center of the hull, we effectively turned the lead in our batteries into a proxy for some of the lead ballast we needed.  This is a photo from last year of one of our four battery compartments.

The point here if you are following along with me is that for the use case and design of an XPM, the “problem” that Lithium batteries would solve with their high energy density for a given weight and size just wasn’t a problem we had; we had the room and we wanted the weight.  So the search for our Goldilocks batteries continued.


FireFly L15  4V-battery photoFor awhile we continued to think that OPzV Gel batteries were the best fit for us, however, just as we had been following the developments of Lithium batteries we had also been tracking the growing use of Carbon Foam type batteries from FireFly.
They ticked all the boxes on our list of criteria, most notably these were proving to be eXtremely robust and several attempts by test labs trying to purposely destroy these batteries failed and they proved to be almost indestructible which is a huge factor for us and our use case.
FireFly House battery bank with DC control panelThese Carbon Foam batteries are also able to work and charge in much lower temperatures such as those we expect to have when we are in polar regions of the world and they are one of the only battery types that don’t suffer from sulfation. and are happy, even recommended, to stay at Partial State of Charge for long periods of time which would normally be the death of most other batteries.


Near the end I found real world installations of these batteries, some of which had been in place for more than ten years and so just before placing this large order of batterie we changed and ordered 24 of these 4V  L15+ size Micro Carbon Foam batteries which now make up our 43.2kW House Bank (1800Ah @ 24V) made by FireFly and they have been working flawlessly for the past six months.

Let me be clear that I am NOT saying that Lithium batteries are not a great choice for many boats, nor am I saying that Carbon Foam batteries are “the best”, I am just hoping to explain how and why we made our decision to go with Carbon Foam and why they are the Goldilocks just right, just for us choice.  All thanks in part to the question we regularly ask near the beginning of our decision making process; What problem is this trying to solve?

Is the problem/item a want or a need?  

We often put each item we are trying to decide on into either the Need to Have or Wish/Want to Have category.  Pretty self explanatory I think, Need to Have are items that we feel are mandatory must haves in order for us to feel confident in going to sea and living full time aboard Möbius.  Examples for us include things like;

  • our high output watermaker,
  • Furuno Radar and other navigation equipment,
  • eXtremely high amounts of acoustic & audio insulation,
  • comfortable Helm Chairs,
  • that little FLIR One thermal camera I used to find the overheated wiring a few weeks ago,
  • great HVAC systems
  • Global communication capability (right now via our Iridium GO)
  • and items like this.

The Want/Wish to Have category can be subdivided into groups such as;

  • buy as soon as the budget allows
  • later when it is ready for real world use (ours)
  • nice to have, perhaps a gift to ourselves or each other

Current examples on our Wish/Want list includes things like:

  • second Furuno Radar with NXT technology,
  • forward facing sonar when it is has been in more mainstream use and is robust enough for our use case
  • active stabilization, most likely Magnus Effect type
  • kite sail with autopilot to add to our propulsion and reduce fuel usage
  • Portland Pudgy, Christine’s long time wish for a small, light sailing dingy
  • affordable high speed internet such as that being promised by 5G and satellite based systems being developed.

We also have a third category worth mentioning which is the Don’t Want Onboard category which is sometimes the best choice.  Items on this list would include things like;

  • anything that requires propane (too much of a pain to fill around the world)
  • anything that requires gasoline (too short a shelf life these days)
  • Generator
  • Guns/weapons

Consequences of adding this item? 

As a good friend and fellow world sailor likes to say “Everything needs” and so we spend time trying to imagine what the needs and other consequences will be if we add this bit of kit to Möbius.  Our primary prioritization of Maintenance, lack thereof, would factor into this for example and hence decisions such as;

  • no paint/wood/SS on the exterior,
  • being single fuel boat with no propane or gasoline,
  • no generator

but it could also be other consequences of adding this item to our boat.  An XPM is complex by virtue of needing to be so self contained and as we often say Möbius is like a floating village in that we have to look after making all our own water, all our own energy, dealing with all our own waste and so on, but we do strive to apply the KISS or Keep It Simple & Safe philosophy to all our decisions by finding the simplest solution possible.  Examples of this would include:

  • manual roll attenuation with our fully mechanical/manual Paravane A-Frames
  • manual Tender Davit system vs hydraulic
  • Gardner engine (no turbo, no electrics, low revs, etc.)

Domino Effect?

The Domino Effect is perhaps a branch of the consideration of the Consequences of any decision as I just outlined above and is when the result of a decision has follow on effects to other systems on that boat.  This can work both ways; sometimes these dominos are positive ones and in other cases they are negative or undesirable consequences.  For example, installing the eXtreme amount of EPDM and acoustic insulation throughout the boat has a domino effect;

  • stabilizes the interior temperatures and makes them more temperate in both very hot and very cold climates
  • this reduces the energy required to cool/heat the boat
  • this allows us to install smaller capacity and less expensive HVAC systems such as Air Conditioning and heating
  • this lowers the demand on our House Batteries and HVAC systems so they run with less loads and last longer

An example of when the Domino Effect can work the opposite direction might be the option we considered of installing fin type active stabilizers.  These work extremely well to reduce the roll in many conditions when on passages but they would also introduce a Domino Effect of consequences that took them out of the running for us, such as;

  • their protrusion from the side of the hull reduces the safety factor when in areas with uncharted rocks, coral heads and the inevitable groundings on these.
  • not suitable when ice is present in polar waters
  • unlikely but possible if a fin is hit hard enough to create an underwater breach of the hull
  • are extremely complex and often top the lists of most maintenance problems we read from other global passage makers.
  • most require a significant hydraulic system to operate which adds yet another whole system onboard to maintain and repair.

Magnus Effect illustrationI might add that having gone through this Domino Effect as we considered active fin stabilization, it also helped us see that we could find a different type of active stabilization if we should ever want that, and one that eliminates most of the dominos I listed above.  This would be stabilizers that use the Magnus Effect which is offered by several different manufacturers now.

Does it pass the Goldilocks test? 

We essentially answer this question by virtue of having gone through all the questions and priorities I’ve already listed.  Because we have highly personalized our overarching principles of SCEM and articulated much more detailed specifics of our use case, our decision making helps us ensure that we are making choices and decisions that are by definition, Goldilocks, just right, just for us.

However, this is such an important factor for us that we do keep coming back to to this “Goldilocks Test” to make sure we are avoiding the tendency to “go with the flow” of following what others are doing or “the way its always been done” and are staying true to ourselves and our preferences.  I will site a more “meta” example here which is our decision in the design phase to “upsize” the length of the boat from the 18-20m / 60-65 ft that we initially imagined and then at the same time “downsize” the interior to have just 2 cabins and 2 heads.

Our decision to extend the length to 24m/78ft was driven two factors; simple physics that hull speed is a factor of Length on the Waterline and our discovery that contrary to popular opinion there is not very many restrictions on boats that are over 20 meters whereas there are some very significant changes to the rules governing ships that are over 24 meters.  With our prioritization of efficiency, we pushed the length to just under 24 meters.  With our infrequent use of marinas the increased docking fees do not affect us very much.  Furthermore, with more and more catamarans being purchased, many marinas are changing their dock rates to be calculated based on overall area of each boat, LOA x Beam and so our slender 5m Beam reduces our overall area and we are often cheaper or about the same as much shorter but wider boats.

Our decisions to “downsize” the interior and thus reduce maintenance and costs was based on the fact that 99% of the time Christine and I are the only two people living onboard so we wanted to make the interior fit us and our needs.  Our Master Cabin is very spacious and luxurious for us.  Our Guest Cabin works very well when we do have guests onboard but most of the time it is a very purposefully designed Office for Christine Kling, the Captain’s nom de plume when she is working on her next book and running her growing book business.  Our SuperSalon is indeed living up to that name the more we live in it.  And my very full size Workshop and Engine Room is that of my dreams. 

There are many other examples of how the Goldilocks Test has driven our decisions such as;

  • Manual Paravane system and Tender Davit that is KISS and as former sailors handling lines, winches and clutches is second hand.
  • Though we designed and built the cabinets, electrical and plumbing for them, we chose not to install either a Dryer or a Dishwasher as we are just not fans of either one and prefer washing and drying by hand.

I could give countless more examples of how we have applied the Goldilocks Test to almost every decision we have made during the design and the building process but I think you get the idea.  We have now been living aboard Möbius since she first launched in February and we are finding that our continuous use of this Goldilocks Test has worked eXtremely well for us in designing and building Möbius and we can and do recommend it highly for almost all decisions and choices you make.

New vs Tried & True?

Christine and I are self described nerds and geeks so we have a great fondness for technology that is on that well named “bleeding edge” and we have a full compliment of devices to show for it.  However, when it comes to equipment for Möbius, and especially all of it that is on that Must Have list, it must be remembered all those decisions must be made within the context that Möbius is an XPM type boat that is designed and built to live up to that acronym for eXtreme eXploration Passage Maker.  So when it comes to deciding on equipment, materials, construction and design of these items, they must, all be Tried & True.  To us this means equipment that has been in regular use on boats, ideally with similar use cases as ours, for several years and has stood that test of time.

Some examples of this for us include:

  • we delayed our decision to go with FireFly Carbon Foam batteries until after we had been able to find enough examples of these batteries being installed in other people’s boats in large numbers for many years.
  • We chose to go with all Furuno for navigation because it is so widely used by commercial boats in fishing fleets, government agencies and the like and hence this equipment is designed and built for continuous 24/7 use in some eXtremely harsh conditions.  They also have an excellent reputation for their continued support of even their oldest equipment.
  • Our decision to go with a Gardner 6LXB engine that is still one of the most efficient diesel engines ever produced and is still in use in thousands of commercial boats worldwide.  It is also perhaps one of the best examples of the KISS approach to design and engineering which adds to how well it passes the Tried & True test.
  • individual MPPT controllers for each of our 14 solar panels as this has been well proven to be the most efficient combination for both overall efficiency, least affected by shading and highest redundancy.

Let me end with a final example of the value of taking this Tried & True test for mission critical ships and equipment from no less than the US Navy!
US Navy Gerald Ford aircraft carrierA recent article caught my eye a few weeks ago where even the us Navy has learned the folly of installing untested equipment on their ships.  This link to the article  USS Gerald R. Ford Problems: The Navy Admits Its Big Mistake (popularmechanics.com) provides a brief but telling story.
US Navy Gerald Ford aircraft carrier side viewas outlined in that article the Chief of Naval Operations, Mike Gilday, says the U.S. Navy built the aircraft carrier USS Ford with too many new technologies. such that now, the Ford is several years behind in its life cycle because of problems with many of those new technologies.

  • The last of the Ford’s four advanced weapon elevators, the most glaring example of the ship’s tech gone wrong, should enter service later this year.
  • When the Navy first built the Ford, it incorporated nearly two dozen new technologies, some of which are still giving the service headaches 4 years after the ship entered the fleet.  Those delays meant the Navy only commissioned the Ford in 2017, despite laying it down in 2009. Even then, problems lingered, especially with the electromagnetic aircraft launch system (EMALS) and the advanced weapon elevators (AWEs).
  • The ship’s first full deployment, originally scheduled for 2018, is now set for 2022.

I think this unfortunate real world example does help to make the point that for XPM types of boats with use cases to match, all the “mission critical” equipment onboard MUST have passed the Tried & True test.

Bubble Bubble, Toil & Trouble!

PXL_20210811_143412922.MPLeaving you with the latest bit of kit that Captain Christine just approved and installed onboard, a fully manual sparkling water maker!  Especially in these hot summer months, Christine particularly enjoys her cold sparkling water and I do too but we don’t like having to buy it in cases of plastic bottles.  We have our watermaker for similar reasons for our regular drinking water.  Initial tests have elicited the same smile you see here so this item has now passed the all important Captain’s Test and has been welcomed aboard.
Thanks so much for making it this far if you have and I do hope that this slightly different format and content is of interest and value to most of you.  Let me know either way with your comments in the “Join the Discussion” box below and I’ll be back with more for you same time next week.

-Wayne

Playing Whack-a-Molomino XPM78-01 Möbius 26-31 July, 2021

Our first week back aboard the good ship Möbius after our 3 week fun packed time being Gramma and Grampa with our two Granddaughters Brynn (beside me in Red) and Blair beside Christine in Green.  Their parents, Lia & Brian joined us as well of course and we are all still savoring the latest batch of memories we created during our time with them exploring Turkey.

Gramma Grampa Brynn Blair IST cafeI’ll let the photo and the smiles tell you all you need to know about what a great time we had. 

If you’d like to see and know more, check out THIS post that Christine put up last week with a few more photos and explanations.
After that MUCH needed break, it was back to work for Christine and I this week and we were soon ramped right back up to our typically busy selves onboard, me getting back to the still growing list of jobs needing done to get Möbius seaworthy and Christine getting back to working on her next books.
CK Author Page on AmazonFor those interested you can check out all of Christine’s best selling thriller novels HERE on her Author’s Page on Amazon.


And boy has it been HOT here in Finike! 
Accuweather Finike July 2021

Lest some of you should think, for reasons I can’t fathom, that I’m eXaggerating about the weather here, check out this snip I just grabbed from Accuweather.

See for yourself, daytime highs of 43C/110F and night time lows down to 22C/72F

Where is Möbius??

Speaking of Finike, some of you have asked about where we and Möbius are now located so here is a quick set of maps to show you,
Turkish Turquoise Coast mapStarting with this bigger picture to give you a sense of where Finike and Turkey is relative to the countries and seas surrounding us.
Turkish coast Finike to AntalyaZoomed into the coastline between Antalya where we started in the upper Right corner and Finike just around the coastal corner in the bottom Right.  Distance by sea is about 70 nautical miles which would be 130km/81 miles.
Setur Marina Finike inner harbourWe were originally tied up on the inner harbour wall where you see the two larger boats in the bottom center here.  However, this was just outside the Setur Finike Marina itself with several very nice restaurants right behind us that featured very lovely live music every night, but a bit too loud and a bit too long (2 AM) for our liking.
31C1CE09-F800-4133-A050-3107EF240DE1So last week we moved over to the docks running along the sea wall breakwater that is in the upper Right in the photo above and we are now snuggled in between these two sailboats.  A bit tight, but no one living on either boat and it is only a short walk to go for a swim over the other side of the sea wall, which we look forward to every night.
IMG_1687Here’s our view looking NNW across our bow at the rest of the marina with the town of Finike spread out behind and some of the surrounding mountains.

All in all a very nice spot that will be Möbius’ Home Port for the rest of this year as we eXplore more of the beautiful Turkish Turquoise Coast.

The Whack-a-Molomino games begin!

I’ve created this portmanteau “Whack-a-Molomino” in an attempt to articulate how my week has been going as I find myself playing this new game that combines;
Whack-a-Mole playingthe thrill of the hunt of playing the arcade game of Whack-a-Mole ….
156361561…… that has been infused with the intrigue of the Domino Effect. 

Read on and you will soon see what I mean.

Cooling Down Heats me up!

Let’s start with this riddle; “How can Air Conditioning heat you up?”   The technically correct answer is that this is a feature of some AirCon systems which can run in what’s known as Reverse Cycle model which heats up the air going into the rooms instead of cooling it down.  This is a very welcome feature in cold climates and the Webasto AirCon system in Möbius does indeed have this Reverse Cycle feature.  However, this week it was a “bug” not a feature when things went pear shaped and the game of Whack-a-Molomino began while trying to get our AirCon system to cool down the cabins on Möbius in these very hot days and nights we’ve been having.  Here’s how that went.


Webasto V50 BlueCool chiller photoWe have been anxious to test out the extensive Air Conditioning system based on a Webasto BlueCool V Series 77k BTU Chiller located in the Workshop which provides the chilled (or heated) water that is piped to ……
Webasto A series air handler…… the four A Series Air Handlers; one 12K in the Guest Cabin, one 18 K in the Master Cabin and two 12K units on either side of the SuperSalon.
Webasto MyTouch control panelEach Air Handler is controlled by one of these MyTouch display panels in each Cabin and then there is a similar controller mounted on the Chiller in the Workshop.  All these MyTouch control panels are networked together so you can control the whole system from anywhere on the boat.

Webasto chiller system diagramA marine AirCon system uses the readily available sea water that is continuously pumped through the Chiller’s water to water heat exchanger which cools the antifreeze/water solution down to about 2-4°C.
This chilled coolant is then pumped through well insulated plumbing to the small water to air heat exchangers (mini radiators) in each Air Handler with a thermostatically controlled fan that blows fresh cold air into each Cabin.

I was primarily anxious to get some real world data on the energy consumption of this AirCon system and as you might imagine, these hot days provided all the more incentive.  So Monday morning I went through all the pre-start preparations for this brand new and new to me set of equipment and controls.  After re-reading the Webasto product manuals, checking that all valves for sea water and coolant were open, all the 230V circuit breakers were on, the five MyTouch displays all came to life and were ready for testing.  I started with the Guest Cabin aka Christine’s Office where she is anxiously awaiting cool calm place to work on her books.  At first I had a problem getting the Chiller unit to go into Cooling mode but it was stuck on Heating mode, but I worked with the two head technicians from Webasto to both design this system and then when they were commissioning it and so I was able to get in touch with them on WhatsApp and they were very fast to respond and show me the “trick” to get into the second settings menu by holding down the main screen for 3 seconds which then gave me the option to change the mode from Heating to Cooling and set it to be Automatic in the future.

All was going well as the Chiller fired up, brought the water temps down from 32C/90F which believe it or not is the sea temperature here, to about 3-4C and then the Air Handler in Christine’s Office came on and had cold air blowing in which put an eXtremely big smile on my Captain’s face!  As I scurried about setting up the other three air handlers, checking for and fixing the leaks I found, and keeping an eye on the Amps/Watts meters I started to notice the very unsettling odor of burning wires!  Yikes!

PXL_20210801_122401634My nose quickly led me to the AC Main Panel in the Basement which is behind the now open Grey door at the far Right end in this photo.  This is the Main AC panel for all the 120 volt and 230 volt circuits we have onboard. 

Fortunately I had caught this early and there was no fire, just the unmistakable and unsettling smell of overheated insulation on electrical wires. 

Plastic wire chaseEverything looked to be fine when I first opened up the door of this Main Panel but the smell was clearly coming from somewhere inside.  Almost all the wires are neatly tucked away inside plastic wire chases like this which do a great job of tidying up all the individual wires and keeping them tucked out of the way BUT you also can’t see what’s going on inside so I started to quickly unclip the tops on all these chases so I could see the wires inside.

PXL_20210728_102634120In the literal heat of the moment I didn’t have the time to take any photos to show how it looked with the covers all in place but a few minutes later, with all the covers removed, I snapped this shot and at first glance all appeared to be well.
PXL_20210728_102701742However, as I scanned all the wiring I realized that this jumble of Black wires in the middle above the row of gray plastic DIN rail junction blocks had not been there the last time I had looked over the AC wiring, though that was a year ago now at least.  As I took it all in I was more and more puzzled as to what all these Black wires were needed for as most of them seemed to be just jumpers from one junction block to the next.
DIN rail terminal block jumpersThis is very puzzling because these DIN junction blocks have built in slots in the middle where you can insert proper copper jumpers that you press in place between any two or more terminals you want to interconnect.
burned wire in AC ctl box The closer I looked the more strange it became and as I carefully moved some of the coiled up wires and found that multiple wires had been jammed into single terminals?

I quickly found the culprit when I burned my fingers on the wires jammed into terminal # 24 (Green arrow) and saw the melting plastic in the middle of that block which the Red arrow is pointing at.

I quickly and carefully pulled the sticky hot wire out of the the melting terminal and you can see the wire inside the White oval.
flir_20210727T164733Again, lest any of you might think I’m eXaggerating how hot these wires had become, I submit as Evidence #1, this thermal image taken from about the same vantage point as the photo above.  The thermal camera I use has this nifty feature of not only color coding the temperatures as well as overlaying actual temperature reading of key spots.  As you can see the “White hot” wire I have removed from terminal #24 is at 101.1C / 214F


Flir One both sides imageFor those of you wondering about this photo and my thermal camera, here are some quick details of what I regard as, for now obvious reasons, one of my most important Safety devices I carry onboard Möbius and would not be without.

My ever so handy and well used Flir ONE Thermal camera plugs into the USB C of my Pixel 5 phone and displays the thermal images overlaid on top of the phones camera image where I can control the degree of transparency to see more or less of the thermal image vs the actual image by varying the degree of transparency.
PXL_20210801_115652254As you can see in the photo above and relative to my hand here, it is a very compact little device which normally lives inside the protective hard shell “Otter box” case it comes with until I need to use it for situations like this. 

I have this camera out at all times on passages and we use it on our hourly engine room and ship inspections to scan things like all the wiring panels, the Gardner and any other places where changes in temperature are not a good thing.

Not particularly cheap until you consider the consequences and expenses of NOT having one!
flir_20210727T175826As a less dramatic and more positive example, I was also able to use my Flir ONE to check the temperature of the air vents in the Salon window sills when the AirCon unit was running and see precise temperatures which I could compare with the other vents and get precise readings to know how well the air was being cooled or not.
PXL_20210801_122344503After this first round of Whack-a-Molomino my AirCon job had turned into a major AC wiring job so this was my “office” for the last four days as I used that plastic crate as my seat perched in front of the AC Main Panel removing all the wiring and replacing it with new and properly connected wires.
Wiring any boat can be challenging but on any metal boat boat and especially so an aluminium boat, this is eXtremely important as the consequences of incorrectly wired, especially AC and DC grounding wires range from accelerated corrosion from stray electrical currents to eXtremely rapid corrosion if current is traveling through the hull or other conductive components such as the prop shaft and propeller.  For reasons that most of us AL boat owners can’t understand, this is an area that many professional and certified technicians seem to not understand and as a result many boats suffer unnecessary damage and shortened life spans.

It became worse as I tested and traced each of the existing wires and discovered that in several cases wires had be simply cut or disconnected in order to prevent things like the RCB safety circuit breakers from tripping.   As I continued by drawing out a schematic of the current Main Panel, I discovered that the electrical diagrams I had been supplied with had not been kept up to date during the build process and given the importance of getting this right the best thing to do was to remove ALL the wiring and start over.


AC Main Dist box schematic 31 July 2021So I started with a literally blank piece of paper and drew out the schematic of how the AC wiring inside this Main Panel needed to be wired.
AC Main control box logis schematicThey are what they are, quick hand sketches, but they work for me and I have found that by drawing out each wire in every circuit and then tracing out each wire with colored highlighters it pretty much forces me to get it right.  Red is the AC Hot/Load wires, Blue is Neutral and Green/Yellow is safety grounding “PE” wires.
PXL_20210730_082928587I won’t belabour this any further and just provide these few shots I took along the way or the rewiring. 

Here is the newly wired middle set of Gray Junction blocks with all the Black jumper wires you can see in the original photo up above now gone and proper DIN junction jumpers now in place where needed.
PXL_20210801_122217853One of the most critical parts of AC wiring on boats is the Green/Yellow grounding wires which must be fully isolated from both the hull and the Blue Neutral wires and be connected at one and ONLY ONE connection point on the boat.  This too had been missed and so here you can see the set of Green/Yellow wires I have separated from the other grounding bus bar a the bottom and added to their own set of Gray junction blocks above.


PXL_20210801_122205659This is where I left off last night, all wires now properly connected and fully tested with both Shore Power connections and Inverter connections to ensure the grounding is correct and that the RCD (Residual Control Devices) are tripping immediately with the least bit >30mAmps of imbalance between the Neutral and the Load wires in each AC circuit.
Tomorrow morning I will finish up by reconnecting indicator lights, tidying up all the wires and putting them neatly into the wire chases for added safety.  I’ll try t show you that in next week’s update.

And thus ended round one of this week’s Olympic Whack-a-Molomino games.  I’m not sure who “won” here other than Möbius being the winner of now being both a better and a more seaworthy boat that puts us one step closer to being able to head out to sea with the complete confidence that is mandatory for doing so, or is at least for Christine and myself.

I’ll be back with more next week as I hopefully get back to what I originally set out to do; get our AirCon system working!

Thanks for taking the time to join me for this week’s tournament and PLEASE do add your comments, questions and suggestions in the “Join the Discussion” box below.

Thanks!

Wayne

Möbius on the Move Progress Update XPM78-01 Möbius April 19-23, 2021

Moving is the theme for this week, and more next week all of which is a VERY good thing!  Albeit eXtremely short trips, literally a couple of hundred yards each, they still represent movement both progress wise and boat wise so it is all good.  When I left you last week we had just moved onto one of the many brand new concrete docks not far from the infamous “end wall” dock inside the Free Zone Harbour where we have tied up several times in the past few months since we splashed on Feb. 20th but they had another big cargo ship coming into the port here so all of us tied up on the end wall needed to move to other locations so the Big Guys could come and go.  I’ll show you more of that in a moment. 

The other even more eXciting moves, yes plural, are hopefullly happening this coming week.  On Tuesday we will be moving Möbius out of the Free Zone harbour for the last time and taking her around the corner to Setur Marina where she will officially begin her life as XPM78-01 Möbius.  Not sure how long we will be there, basically as long as it takes for Christine and I to get her fully seaworthy and ready to cut the dock lines and head out to sea.  I will chronicle all of that here in future weekly Progress Updates so you will get to see what all is involved as it happens. 

IMG_20210419_070018But WAIT!  There’s MORE!!!  What could possibly top having Möbius start her own life with us?  Easy, because the other big “move” which I am even more eXcited about is that my Beautiful Bride, aka Captain Christine flies back into my arms on Thursday night!  She’s been away in Florida having a whirlwind of a time with all her family and friends back there in the Fort Lauderdale area and especially enjoying her much needed Gramma time with our grandson Liam.  So it’s been great for her to get away from this non-stop boat work, and even more so jettison out of “Wayne’s World” for two weeks but I miss her terribly and can’t wait to meet her coming out the exit doors at AYT, Antalya Intnl Airport on Thursday.


And as you can see, I’m not the only one who has been missing the Captain.


IMG_20210419_070044For those who may not have met them yet, Ruby the Wonderdog is the mass of Black curls on the Left and Barney, aka The Barnes, our Yorkshire Terror at her side.  Other than the past 3 years while we’ve been dirt dwellers during the build of Möbius, both of these guys have spent all their lives on boats, and a fair number of planes, trains and automobiles.  14 years worth for Ruby and 9 for Barney so they have a LOT of miles under their paws and more to come soon.

So it is easy to see why “moving” is the theme this week and next and now let’s move on to Showing & Telling you more about all the moves and other progress here on the Good Ship Möbius during the week that was April 19-23, 2021.


Commissioning Continues

IMG_20210423_122621As with most posts for the past two months, the primary activity aboard Möbius is the commissioning of all the many bits of kit that make up our many systems. 
Not too eXciting to watch quite frankly but eXtremely important to do and get everything right, working and tested.  Sometimes we do this virtually, with the technician from the manufacturer coming aboard via the internet and truly eXciting scenes like this one!
IMG_20210423_122607Ismail, our electrician, and I are talking with Alex from Victron who is in his office in Istanbul and we have him patched in via a shared desktop on my laptop on the Left which is in turn connected by ethernet cable to the Victron network aboard Möbius, and via WhatsApp on my smaller computer for text and voice. 
Together we are able to run and test all the Victron equipment such as the 5 MultiPlus Inverter/Chargers, Isolation Transformer, MPPT controllers and so on.  Took us about 5 hours but we were able to get everything configured and they are now all good to go.


IMG_20210422_150228Similar virtual commissioning going on with our Kabola KB45 diesel boiler, though it was not so cooperative and we still have more to do to finish the commissioning and testing so we can finally have hot water aboard!
IMG_20210421_172609Part of the remaining work with the Kabola is getting this Grundfos Alpha2 circulation pump installed, filled with antifreeze solution and bled.  This circulates the hot water for one of the heat exchangers which transfer their heat to our domestic hot water.
IMG_20210420_113048Commissioning also often involves some good Houdini skills such as Ismail up on top is demonstrating as they try to get the Kabola lifted up and put into it AL frame bolted to the Workshop shelf it lives on.

Mr. Gee gits ‘er dun!

IMG_20210419_160453While he is ailing and I have not had a spare moment to investigate the cause of his sudden loss of oil pressure on the first sea trials a few weeks ago, Mr. Gee was able to power the move here within the Free Zone harbour with no problem. 

This was Mr. Gee’s oil pressure at start-up, right around 30 PSI, which for a Gardner is not much below the 38 PSI he normally runs at, however as the oil warms up it drops down to around 20 PSI so there is definately something very wrong that I need to get to the bottom of as soon as we are over in Setur Marina and I can make the time to start digging into the source of the problem. 
Unfortunately I am relatively certain that I know what the problem is and it is not good news nor a quick fix.   But I will leave all that  until I have time to find out for sure what’s going on which means a significant dismantling I’m sure.  Stay tuned for more on all that starting next week.

New Neighbors and Neighborhood

Free Zone   Setur Google Earth labelledYou may recall seeing this birds eye view from the last move we did from Setur over to the Free Zone harbour and this aerial view of the Free Zone Harbour on the bottom Left and Setur Marina on the bottom Right will give you a bester sense of the move this week. 

Last week were at position #1 on the End Dock Wall and this week we are now back over at position #2 where we were about a month ago.

Next week’s move has us going from #2 over to #3 in Setur although we don’t know just where we will be in Setur just yet.
IMG_20210419_165233We are Med Moored in our new home this week, which means there are lines off our Bow as you can see here, which extend out to a massive weight at the bottom of the harbour with all these lines firmly attached.  On your way in, you pick up the float that is on the end of one of these lines and bring it aboard while you back down with your stern to the dock.
IMG_20210424_103840Like this.  It takes a bit of getting used to this style of docking but the key advantage, at least to the marina, is that each boat only takes up its width on the dock rather than its length if you were to be side tied.  So you can have a LOT more boats docked on any given length of dock.  This is the norm in the Mediterranean and hence the name Med Mooring.
IMG_20210424_103858If you look closely at the bottom of this photo you will see how we are able to use our swim ladder for a passerelle or “gang plank” for getting on/off the boat.  You can’t really see it but there are massive black rubber fenders or bumpers all along the edge of the concrete dock and that’s what the end of the now horizontal swim ladder rests on.  Works well and makes getting on/off the boat quite quick and easy.
IMG_20210424_103912This is our new Starboard side neighbor, a brand new Bering 77 “Veronika” which just launched.  There was some good press coverage of the launch that you can see HERE if you’re interested in knowing more.
IMG_20210415_140511If this boat looks vaguely familiar, there is a good reason for that as you saw this boat two weeks ago when I was showing you the “Launch Fest” going on here when the new 560 Ton TraveLift started working after more then 4 months with no launching capabilities here.
IMG_20210415_140645Based on hull length, Veronika is just one foot less than Möbius at 78 feet, however these shots are a great example of how length of any boat tells you so very little about the boat itself or provides any real comparison.  This is a much more traditional “Trawler” and so you can perhaps understand why I hesitate when people ask me if an XPM such as our XPM78-01 Möbius is a Trawler?


For a quick comparison, Veronika’s basic measurements first followed by those of Möbius:

  • Displacement:     165 metric tons vs Möbius’ 45
  • Beam:                    7.3m/24 ft vs 5.0m/16.4 ft
  • Cruise Speed:       8 kts vs 10-11 kts
  • Range:                    4000nm vs 8000
  • Accommodation:    6cabins, 6heads + up to 4crew vs Möbius 2cabins, 2 heads and no crew thanks very much.


IMG_20210424_103943Take a moment to study the differences between Möbius and Veronika and you will quickly see that other than being about the same length, they share almost nothing else in comparison.

You can find the whole set of specs on the Bering 77 HERE if you’d like to learn more and see more photos.
IMG_20210424_104047Just so we are clear, it is not a question of which one is “best”, they both are, just depends on your use cases and taste.  There’s a boat out there for everyone and every use case.  We are just SO eXcited that thanks to Dennis at Artnautica and everyone at Naval Yachts  we now have our Goldilocks Just Right, Just  for Us, boat!
And that’s a wrap for this past week folks.  Lots of activity, just not much visual results to show you but hope you continue to enjoy coming along on this ride with us and that you will be back again for more next week.

In the meantime, please do leave any and all questions and comments in the “Join the Discussion” box below.  While I am atrociously behind in responding to your most recent comments, they add a HUGE value to this blog and for Christine and myself and I am eXtremely appreciative of each one so thanks for that!

-Wayne