Reminiscent of the line from one of the Godfather movies I believe “Just when I thought I was out; they pull me back in” Möbius is now back in Finike. Multiple factors driving our decision including that Christine needed to go back to Antalya for one or more consultations with her surgeon who did the arthroscopic operation to fix her torn meniscus and we needed to get the new beam for the Davit Arch brought to Möbius from Naval Yachts in Antalya. As you may recall, Setur Marina here in Finike was our “home port” since last July so we are very familiar with the area and know where to go to get things, who to talk with in our network here to get things done and a good safe spot to have Möbius tied up for a few more weeks while Christine continues her recovery and I get boat jobs done.
Marmaris to Finike
I spent most of the day on Monday going to different marine stores in Marmaris to pick up some of the lines and hardware I need for rigging up our Paravane stabilization system and doing some grocery shopping to stock up for the next week. Christine had found a lovely little anchorage on the charts that was just about 10 nm (nautical miles) from the marina in Marmaris so we untied from the dock and headed over there on Monday afternoon leaving Marmaris in our wake as per the photo. Though I must point out “What wake?” as I am just so pleased with how clean Möbius slices through the water. Thanks Dennis for the great hull design! We tucked inside a small bay with this small island just outside and enjoyed the sundown with some wine up in the SkyBridge with views like this. We had a bit of a rude awakening when a ferry went past the entrance at about 3am which rolled us so bad we almost flew out of bed. After picking up some of the items that had ended up on the floor we decided that we were wide awake and had a long run ahead of us so might as well just weigh anchor and head for Finike. We were rewarded with what was apparently a special “Rose Moon” and very flat seas as you can see so made the decision pretty easy. It was ideal motor boat conditions with glassy flat seas and no wind.
This is a shot of our wake or lack thereof at about 8.3 knots And this is the bow wave.
It was about 110nm down to Finike and these conditions continued the entire way. It was the longest continuous voyage we’ve yet taken aboard Möbius and gave us a good chance to test out running the boat for longer and longer runs as we get everything broken in and learn more and more about running this very unique and new to us boat.
I’ve discovered that our fuel flow meters have not been connected correctly so all my previous fuel burn numbers I’ve published are out by at least 40% so for this run I measured the actual volume of fuel removed from the Day Tank and used this to calculate the true fuel consumption. 109nm total distance traveled and we burned 169 liters so an average of 0.64 nm/L or 2.4 USG/nm which is right on my original estimates and MUCH better than the numbers I had been getting from the fuel flow meters. Just like the oil pressure gauge problems that vexed me in the past, I have once again been tripped up by assuming that the gauges were correct. Silly me!
The Turquoise Coast of Turkey was on full display for the whole day and this photo is typical of what the rugged rocky and forested coastline looks like.
Total trip time anchor to dock was about 13.5 hours so our average speed was 8.1 knots. We will continue to play with the various combinations of Mr. Gee’s RPM and the CPP pitch settings to bring the speed up more and more and find the Goldilocks “sweet spot” for speed, fuel economy and ideal loads.
Progress Update on Christine and XPM Hulls #2 & 3
We rented a car for Tuesday morning and drove down to the hospital in Antalya for Christine’s checkup and to get the stitches removed. Typical of our experiences with Turkish medical treatment at least at this hospital, it took less than 20 minutes from the time Christine walked in with no appointment to when she was back out front of the hospital stitches removed and an A+ report card from her surgeon. She is still not getting off the boat too much yet but the swelling is way down as is the pain and she is able to walk more and more around the boat so a full recovery is looking more and more likely. Doc said she could go swimming as of today (Sunday) so we will probably go for our first swim of the year when I get this blog posted. While we were in Antalya, we asked Naval Yachts if we could stop by the Free Zone to see how the two new XPM builds are going and this is what XPM78-02 “Vanguard” is looking like. And this is what XPM85-01 is looking like while still upside down getting all the hull plates welded on. She is due to flip right side up next month which is always a very big milestone in a build and we could not be more excited for her owners Andrew and Lili. A view of Vanguard from the rear Port quarter. Those with detailed eyes will perhaps notice that the owners have decided to paint the hull so you can see the first coat of primer has been applied to the hull sides. One of the major differences between our XPM78-01 and this second version is that it will be a twin engine/prop boat. These are the partially completed skegs that house the prop shafts. No change here on the Swim Platform with the doghouse for entering into the Engine Room and the same stairs on boat sides leading up to the Aft Deck. With twin JD engines the Engine Room will be much more traditional with a full beam layout but this comes at the expense of the Workshop we have in Möbius with the smaller central ER for Mr. Gee. The Basement has also been eliminated on Vanguard so the ER will also have most of the systems equipment located within as well. Up above on the Aft Deck the cantilevered roof is much longer and more substantial than on Möbius which will provide more shelter underneath and space for solar panels above. These are the drawings and renderings for one of the two guest cabins, this one located at the very front near the forepeak. Construction of the furniture for this cabin has begun and this will be the cabin for the Owners’ young son. Shower and toilet in the cabin’s Head. Probably the biggest single difference between Möbius and Vanguard is that they have replaced the Basement underneath the floor of the Salon with this spacious Master Cabin. To get the additional 1.2m of headroom needed, the tank tops have been lowered and the whole Salon has been raised. Provides a significant increase in the sleeping area but comes at the expense of storage so all part of the compromises of designing and building a boat that best matches her owners. The additional height is easy to see when you notice how the bottom of the Salon windows now sit about 40cm above the deck where they are almost flush on Möbius. Another very visible difference with the addition of these tall bulwarks that run down the entire length of both sides of the deck. Will make for a much safer feeling that many prefer when traversing these side decks. Seen from the Aft Deck of Vanguard, the stern of XPM85-01 shows how it too will be a twin engine boat and the two prop tunnels are easy to see now. A worm’s eye view underneath the XPM85 shows how the upside down framing is supported by the steel structure attached to the concrete floor of the shipyard. Still a long way to go and a LOT of welding but they are off to a good start as you can see looking up into what will be the Engine Room of the XPM85. Looking aft from the bow, the plates for the sides of the hull are being held in alignment by all these sacrificial AL bars. The plates are pushed/pulled into alignment and then these bars are tack welded to hold the plates in position for the MIG welders to sew together all the seams. Same “crash bulkhead” bow design and central anchor snubber nose cone. As exciting as it was to see all the progress on these next two XPM hulls, what really got our hearts racing was finding this completed new beam for the Davit Arch on Möbius! We are ever so appreciative of Naval Yachts getting this replacement beam fabricated in record time. All thanks to Dennis’ even speedier redesign and testing of this new beam so our thanks to all. I’ve arranged for a bonded truck to bring it from the Free Zone to Finike this coming week and with any luck I’ll be able to show you the new and improved Davit Arch installed and working on Möbius in next week’s update.
We have decided to go with passive rather than active stabilization, at least for the foreseeable future and will use a pair of A-frame booms that can be lowered to about 45 degrees off each side of the Aft Deck. The aluminium booms have been installed for some time now so this week I was finally able to do the rigging to raise/lower the booms. As with most of the other rigging on Möbius I am using synthetic rope most commonly known as Dyneema or Amsteel. As incredible as it sounds this new age line is stronger than multi stand stainless steel wire and is SO much easier to rig and replace. It is easily cut with this “hot knife” and I just wrap the location of the cut with grey PVC tape and then slice through the line with the red hot blade. This leaves a very nicely fused end on the line so it does not unravel and is easy to handle. This is the setup that will raise and lower the booms from vertical when stowed to about 45 degrees when deployed. Very simple setup with the end of the line attached to the bracket on the left which is about half way up the 6.2m/20ft long boom pole and then over through the black turning block and down to the winch below.
Deploying the paravane booms is a simple matter of slipping the line on the winch to lower the boom until ……
…….. the fixed length support line at the end of the boom goes tight. Looking up from deck level where it is easy to reach and turn the winch handle. Easy to see from this view from the dock. One side all done. Both sides done and this is what it looks like with both paravane booms fully extended. I grabbed this shot from some posts on the Trawler Forum boat “Hobo” to show what it will look like with the paravanes or “fish” as they are often called deployed when underway. Each paravane/fish is suspended by a 9m length of Dyneema from the ends of each boom such that they “fly” through the water about 6m/20ft below the surface and about 5m off the sides of the hull. As the boat tries to roll, one vane resists being pulled up while the other one “dives” down and sets up to resist as the roll goes over to the other side. A bit like the tight rope walker’s pole works. Paravanes also have the benefit of working at anchor as well so no more being tossed out of bed in a rolly anchorage! Some of my fellow Canadian boaters have come up with this design for a DIY paravane and I’ll be using this to build the first pair for Möbius. Plywood is surprisingly difficult to find here so Christine and I spent a few hours when we were in Antalya searching and finally finding a shop in the industrial zone that had some left over 20mm / 3/4” marine plywood left over and kindly agreed to cut the two pieces I need to build our paravanes. When finished our paravanes will look very similar to these also off mv Hobo.
White epoxy painted plywood with aluminium plate for the fin and line attachment. We will use Dyneema rather than SS chain as shown here.
That’s the story for the week of June 13-19 here in Finike and hope your week was similarly productive. Thanks for taking the time to join us here and please do add any and all comments or questions in the “Join the Discussion” box below. Hope to have you here with us again next week.
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..
We 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. The 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. The 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. Meanwhile, 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. XPM78-02 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. The 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.
Here is the view from inside the SuperSalon looking back out onto the Aft Deck.
Going 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. Peering 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. Looking up and aft lets you see another view of the upside down XPM85. Back 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.
Bulwarks run all the way up to and around the Anchor Deck and bow. Up 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.
Lest 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. Christine 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. So 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!
A rather scattered feeling week as Christine and I scurry about trying to get everything done before we fly back to the US and Canada for two months of long overdue and much needed Gramma & Grampa time with our kids, grandkids and many others. It will be almost two years since I’ve been back there so I am REALLY looking forward to this chance to spend time with the loved ones we so gratefully get to count as our family and friends. Our challenge is that this long list of friends and family are spread out all across North America so there is no one or even several common areas we can fly into where groups of them live.
However this is nothing new for us and so our favorite method is to rent an SUV, do a quick DIY mini camper conversion by building a platform bed in the back, picking up a cooler and some basic culinary tools and hit the road. We’ve been referring to these as the “Nauti Grandparents World Tour” and I think this will be our fourth or so NA Road trip
Here is one example of how I setup this Ford Edge SUV for our two month trek back in 2018. This is one of our favorite spots on the Florida everglades just a few miles away from where Christine’s son Tim lives where we have crocs to entertain us for our morning breakfast. And NO that did not include them having Barney or Ruby FOR breakfast! This was how I converted the 1998 Galloper that we were gifted by our dear friend John for our trek from Portugal to Turkey back in 2017. Simple but effective and we have a treasure trove of great memories from these trips so it is a pattern we hare very happy to repeat.
I like living on The No Plan Plan so we don’t have a route or schedule worked out but our current thinking is that after we land in Miami this coming Thursday Oct. 7th I will get busy with the camper conversion of the SUV and spend the weekend with friends and family in the southern Florida area before we start making our way North. We will likely do a somewhat diagonal trek to see friends in northern Florida, Alabama, Chicago and South Dakota and probably cross into Canada around the Alberta/Saskatchewan border. From there I’m looking forward to introducing Christine to some of Canada’s finest jewels by going through the Rockies to see spots such as Banff, Jasper and Lake Louise. Lots more family and friends to see in BC as we eventually make our way over to Vancouver and then Vancouver Island before we need to head south along the Pacific coast down to the SF Bay area and LA where we’ll turn left and start making our way East back to Florida where we fly back to Turkey on the first of December. It will be interesting to see what the odometer reads when we turn it in but likely more than 10K miles in total I’m guessing.
I will keep you posted from time to time here on the blog and those who wish can also follow along on FB and Instagram but this will likely be a bit of a hiatus for my blog articles till we return to Möbius at the beginning of December.
But enough of the future and let’s get back to the past week and what’s been going on. As per the title, I’m just going to catch you up on the bits and bobs of jobs that we got done this past week.
In last week’s post which you can read HERE I covered the installation of the big Blue Media or “sand” filter that I installed to more thoroughly filter the sea water as it gets pumped through the watermaker and converted into clear clean and almost pure H2O. This extends the life of the other two sea water filters from weeks to about one year so well worth the time and trouble. I received quite a few questions and Emails about this and you can read some of that in my answers to the comments on that posting but I thought some of this was worth posting here on its own with a few more details added.
One part of the discussion was about how Watermakers work and I noted that I’ve never been sure that Watermakers use “Reverse Osmosis” as this is a purely mechanical process of forcing salt water under very high pressures to pass through a semi-permeable membrane that won’t allow the larger sized salt and other molecules pass through so you get close to pure H2O as a result. I think the confusion in terminology comes in due to the fact that these membranes are very universal in use for lots of different applications and one of those is for actual reverse osmosis treatment of water such as ones in homes that use the chemical process of reverse osmosis to “pull” the raw water through the membrane and filter out unwanted minerals and other molecules to create clean water on the other side of the membrane.
My understanding is that high quality membranes such as those from DOW and Parker, only allow particles smaller than 0.0001 microns to pass through so very little other than the H2O molecules themselves can make it through.
This graphic from SeaTask does a nice job of putting this into perspective and as it notes, not much more than the H2O molecules can make it through that membrane.
Several people asked if we were doing any additional treatments to the watermaker water before drinking it. The short answer is no, we don’t do any additional treatment and drink the product water as it is called as it comes out of the watermaker. The slightly longer answer is that while some others do add additional treatments ranging from the use of second actual RO filter to UV (Ultra Violet) radiation, we feel that these are superfluous. Both Christine and I have been drinking watermaker water for decades with no known side or ill effects so we are very comfortable with this.
However, we do also have a 210L/55USG polyethylene tank that we also keep filled with watermaker water at all times. We did this as a redundant backup type of system and a bit of a “belt & suspenders” approach for that critical to life commodity of potable water. This tank is completely independent with its own pump with a dedicated faucet in the galley sink and as with all our aluminium built in tanks, it too is ONLY ever filled with water from our watermaker. No shore water allowed onboard. Therefore even if we were to somehow loose the entire 7300L/1900USG supply of potable water in the six aluminium tanks welded into the hull or their pumps or plumbing failed, we would always have about 200L to tide us over until we could fix the watermaker or whatever the problem was with our potable water system. We use this plastic water tank every day as literal drinking water supply from the faucet in the galley sink, but we do this just to keep this tank, pump, lines, etc. in good working condition, not because of any concern for the quality of the water itself and we regularly drink the water from all the other faucets as well.
I have read mixed reports of concerns that watermaker water is “too pure” in that the “good” parts such as some minerals and vitamins but we have always had a daily regime of multi vitamins, vitamin D & E, Omega 3, etc. as a “just in case” we might be short on any of those with our regular eating so these would more than make up for any lack of minerals and vitamins in our onboard potable water.
If anything, the only slight downside of drinking watermaker water is that it is pretty much tasteless and we do notice that when we are travelling or eating at other people’s homes that there is more “taste” the water, which of course can sometimes be very good and other times not so much so!
More XPM Family News
A few weeks ago in my post “The Artnautica Family Continues to Grow” I shared a few details of the next two XPM boats being built at Naval Yachts, the XPM78-02 Vanguard and the first of the larger XPM85 mode. This week I received two new introduction videos that Naval has posted on YouTube and I thought you might enjoy seeing these so here are the links below.
XPM78-02 Vanguard Intro video
XPM85 intro video from Naval
I will do my best to keep you updated as these two new builds progress so do stay tuned for more XPM goodness in the coming months.
Some TLC for our Tender “Mobli”
I was finally able to carve out some time to work on getting our Tender which we have called “Mobli” as a slight play on Kipling’s character Mowgli.
Basic specs are:
LOA 5.0m / 16.4ft
Beam 2.0m / 6.5ft
Draft 288mm / 13.8 inch
Weight: 1088 Kg / 2390 Lbs
Engine: 110HP Yanmar 4JH4-HTE
Propulsion: Castoldi 224 Direct Drive Jet
Our design intent was not for a typical RIB dinghy to just ferry us ashore in an anchorage and much more so a full on Tender that we designed using the same four SCEM principles we used for Möbius; Safety, Comfort, Efficiency and Maintainability. This will be our mini eXplorer boat to take us to places we can’t or don’t want to take Möbius to such as up small inlets and rivers, into super shallow bays and enable us to take multi day eXcursions in safety and comfortably dry in most any weather. Should also make for a fun boat when we have grandkids and others that might want to go water skiing or wakeboarding.
Mobli will also be our backup plan if we should ever run into catastrophic problems with Möbius being either unable to move or worst yet, sinking or on fire. As such Mobli will be both our lifeboat should we ever need to abandon ship and also be our emergency “get home” solution by being a little mini tugboat capable of pushing or pulling Möbius at a reasonable speed in reasonable sea conditions. Hence the 110HP inboard, which also met our single fuel boat design criteria by eliminating gasoline for an outboard engine. After seeing so many jet drives being used the pilot boats being built for Coast Guards, military and police use, we went with a jet drive for added safety, shallow water ability and high mobility in any direction. Having industrial quality rubber fenders or rub rails wrapped around all sides gave us all the better abilities to be a mini tugboat and be that much safer and cleaner when we make contact with docks or other boats.
For ease of boarding we designed the bow on Mobli such that we can butt the squared off bow fender up against a dock or the end of the Swim Platform on Möbius and then use these two very solid handrails for maximum safety for those getting on/off.
Prior to leaving the Antalya Free Zone back in May, Christine and had installed the Castoldi 224DD Jet Drive into the hull so she is watertight but I ran out of time during the launch and so I just set the 110HP Yanmar 4JH4-HTE engine in place on the engine beds and covered her up until this week.
So for the past months since launch, Mobli has been patiently waiting in her chocks on the Aft Deck for some time and attention to get her sea worthy too. You can see how Mobil has been designed for a Goldilocks close fit on the Aft Deck and by putting her at an angle the weight is kept very close to the centerline of Möbius and does not cause much heel when onboard. What little listing there is we can easily compensate for by moving a bit of our potable water to tanks in the other side using the built in water transfer pump system. We designed the engine bay lid to hinge up and out of the way to provide maximum access all around when open and then fully sound proofed when closed. Once I get the engine fully installed I have the sound insulation foam to install on all sides and the underside of the lid to keep Tender nice and quiet when underway, just like her sibling Möbius. Our decision on the whole jet drive propulsion system became very easy when we discovered that the Castoldi 224DD and Yanmar 4JH4-HTE were available as a total propulsion package that came with everything needed including all the wiring harnesses, hydraulic steering, dashboard instrumentation and switches, CentaFlex coupling and Transmec Cardon shaft, wet muffler, etc. I’ve been most impressed with the completeness of this single package and will help to make the installation much more trouble free. If you look at the drawings above you can see how the CentaFlex flexible coupling on the left, bolts to the Yanmar’s flywheel and then the Transmec Cardon shaft on the right, bolts to that at the front and then the Castoldi input flange aft. Here are all those parts in real life and one of my tasks this week was to work out the correct length and alignment of this drive train so I could then do the second job of bolting the 4 motor mounts on the Yanmar to the 20mm thick AL engine beds you can see them resting on here. A slightly different and closer view for you. The CentaFlex coupling helps to eliminate any vibrations and provide a smoother coupling of the Yanmar’s power to the jet drive. You may recall seeing a much larger version of this same kind of CentaFlex coupling that connects Mr. Gee to the Nogva CPP gearbox. so nice to keep it all in the same family. Once I had the fore/aft position of the Yanmar worked out, the next very important task was to align the output flange of the Yanmar flywheel to be precisely the same as the input flange on the Castoldi. It is a bit tricky and time consuming as you need to align the centerline of the Yanmar’s crankshaft to the input shaft of the Castoldi. As such, you need to measure and adjust the Yanmar in all six degrees.
I clamped the aluminium flat bar to the face of the Castoldi flange and uses this as my horizontal and then rotated 90 degrees to be the vertical reference points from which I could measure to the machined surfaces of the flywheel and bellhousing. Additionally, I needed to get the two centerlines to meet up and so I came up with this magnetic pointer that I could attach to the center shaft on the Castoldi and extend that to the centered hole in the end of the Yanmar’s crankshaft. A ways out as you can see here so then I adjusted the rear two motor mounts down a bit and the front two up a bit to tilt the engine downwards until the pointer was dead centered. Of course this now puts the vertical alignment out of whack a bit so you have to go back and reset those and around you go till you get them all just right. Once I had everything aligned I could centerpunch the locations for the two bolts that fasten each motor mount to the engine beds and drill them out for the 10mm hardened steel bolts.
Of course Mr. Murphey was on the job with me as always and to be able to get the drill into three of these bolt locations I had to lift and shift the engine out of the way which meant that I then had to go back and redo all the alignments! Finally all done with mounting the engine and time to prep the CentaFlex Coupling and the Cardon shaft to be installed next. As the weekend slipped away, all I had time for was cleaning up and painting the drive components and getting them all safely stowed away for the next two months while we are away. When we get back in December I will finish installing them and the drive system will be all good to go. Then it will take me some time to install all the steering, control panels, hydraulic lines, starter batteries, throttle cable, wet exhaust system, etc.
Looking forward to getting to all those jobs when I return and then being able to launch and test Mogli to see how she performs. Launching will also require me to rig up the Davit Arch in order to launch Mobli so be sure to stay tuned for those updates as they start to roll out when we get back to Turkey in December. That is about it for actual work on Möbius this week as I will be busy for the next few days before we fly out on Wednesday, getting Möbius tidied up and ready for the arrival of the wetter rainy months of winter here in Antalya. I will do my best to post a brief update just before or after we fly out.
Thanks so much for joining us on this grand adventure and don’t forget to add your comments and questions in the “Join the Discussion” box below.
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. What 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.
Since 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!!!
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.
We 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. This 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. Such 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.
The 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. You 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. Keen 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.
There 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!
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. This 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.
Not 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. Covid 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. Unfortunately 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
As 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. Rob 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
As 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.
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. As you can see here in this rendering of the framework of LRC65, the LRC/XPM boat similarities are much more than just skin deep. Here 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.
There 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).
Phwew!!! That was quite the tour of the XPM Family Tree!
Coming 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 email@example.com
We 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..
Finally, 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
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.
Our 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! As 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.
For 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. These 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)
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,
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.)
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.
I 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! A 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. as 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!
Leaving 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.
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.
But 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.
For 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.
As 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! Ismail, 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.
Similar 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! Part 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. Commissioning 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!
While 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
You 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. We 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. Like 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. If 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. This 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. If 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. Based 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.
Take 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. Just 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!