The daytime temperatures are not the only thing really heating up here in Antalya as work on mv Möbius aka XPM78-01 continues to progress in multiple shops here at Naval Yachts. We’ve seen a few days over 35C / 95F this past week but mostly in the low 30’s so definately summer but nothing too unbearable. What is VERY easy to bear is all the exciting new progress made this week so let’s jump right in and show you what’s been happening this past week of June 23-28, 2019.
Let’s start by walking over to the Cabinetry shop and see what Omur and Selim have been working on.
I will use this same rendering of the Master Cabin that you’ve seen in previous posts to remind you of the basic layout. You are standing up near the bow/front of the boat and cabin looking aft with the vanity sink behind you and the shower and bathroom out of sight on your right.
The entrance door is over in the far left corner of this shot and has a mirror on it so don’t let that fool you.
This is the bottom of the wardrobe that you can see in the far back left corner in the rendering above which will be on your right hand side as you walk down the stairs from the SuperSalon and enter the Master Cabin.
Now they are putting together the foam filled door you see on the floor here by gluing in the solid Rosewood edges prior to applying the Rosewood and Beech veneer.
In this shot they have laid the Wardrobe on its side to fit the door into one of its two jambs. This door jamb obviously on the wardrobe itself and then this same door will hinge open on the far side and fit into the second door jamb to close off the entrance.
Harken on the left, our phenomenal cabinetry CAD wizard is checking the fit and going over the details with Omur.
You may recall our interior design theme where we will have a aquamarine “horizon line” with a recessed hand hold running horizontally throughout the boat about 1m/3ft from the floor and then everything below this is Rosewood and everything above it is either glass, leather or upholstery. Hence the door above has Rosewood on the bottom half and then a leather covered panel will snap in place on top.
With the Wardrobe largely complete Omur and Selim have moved over to working on the next bit of cabinetry which is the large bureau of eight drawers with the 3D Möbius strip cloth sculpture beautifully displayed hanging in the special space above.
You can see a stand in white version of this sculpture in the rendering above but just wait until you see the real thing that our brilliant niece Lindsay has artfully created for us! As per the rendering above the back of this space will have a mirror and then leather on the two side walls and the surface of the top shelf. There will be lights above to suitably showcase this awemazing piece of art even more.
Before we leave the Cabinetry shop I wanted to show you these fabulous hidden hinges which Naval has found and will use for all the doors in the XPM’s.
In addition to being beautiful they are strong and super adjustable in every direction using the various set screws you can see. A jig and a palm router make it easy to cut perfect mortises into the door ……
… and sit flush and tight like this when installed. Not cheap but Oh so beautiful both functionally and esthetically.
Let’s get out of Ömür way and walk over to the shipyard building next door and check in with Uğur, Nihat, Mummy, Mehmet and Cihan to see what the aluminum workers have been up to this week. Trust me, they won’t disappoint!
They have been working both ends of the boat and up here at the bow we find them ………………. OH NO!!! cutting big huge holes in our hull again!
Not to worry all as intended and you will recall seeing them cut the two 300mm/1ft holes in either side for the bow thruster tube last week. Now they are cutting in and fabricating the concave fairing section aft of the tube that will help reduce the turbulence and drag as the water flows past this large thruster tube opening.
These are the guidelines from Vetus for the size, shape and positioning of the recommended fairings.
After Yiğit did the calculations and 3D modeling for these fairings Uğur has transferred the complex shape from paper templates to 15mm / 5/8” plate and then built a jig in the hydraulic press to create these inserts.
Which are then fitted and tacked into place in the hull.
Sezgin heeds the call and completes the deep penetrating welds ….
…. on the outside ……
… and the inside.
Sighting down the hull across the thruster tube on the Starboard side of the bow you can see how these fairings will help catch the flow and “stick” it back onto the hull as it continues smoothly aft.
Now we wait for the big thruster to arrive so it can be fitted to the thruster tube and then it will be similarly solidly welded in place and we’ll have an eXtremely water tight and strong bow once again.
Cutting holes in the hull seemed to be a bit of a theme this week but again all by design as Cihan installed these drain pipes for the hatch gutters to quickly carries any water that makes it in there over and out through the clear tubes you see here which connect to the newly welded drain tubes.
Moving to the outside you can see where these 20mm/3/4” drain pipes exit just below the rub rails. Simple and efficient way to make sure that all the water stays where it belongs; on the OUTSIDE of the boat!
Speaking of hatches, the sample I ordered for the edge seals for the hatches finally arrived and I was able to test fit them to make sure they were just right for creating an eXtremely water tight seal when the hatch lids are closed.
These are relatively common industrial seals used in many applications from RV’s to boats to automobiles and have a lower U shaped PVC covered aluminium to securely grip the 8mm/ 5/16” thick aluminium edges of our in house made hatches and then has a 16mm / 5/8” diameter hollow EPDM bulb which is compressed 50% when the hatch lids press down on them.
Before ordering the whole roll of this edge seal I wanted to test fit them to be sure they were going to fit around the radiused corners and that they would “squish” just right when the lid was dogged down. They fit perfect, gripped the 8mm edges very firmly and squished down in true Goldilocks fashion, not too loose, not too tight, just right!
More aluminium progress as Uğur and Nihat started fabricating the Dorade Boxes that will go up on the foredeck to provide lots of dry fresh air into the Master Cabin even in driving rain and on passages. This is upside down showing the edge that will be welded to the deck and will have a series of slots or scuppers cut in for the water to drain out.
This quick render shows where those four Dorade Vents will sit on the foredeck with the aft two being on either side of the King bed, the center one being right above the vanity sink and the Port side one bringing fresh breezes into the head and shower area.
Uğur is testing out the initial prototype of these Dorade Vent boxes as he lowers the tacked up vent box over the vertical standpipe which has already been welded through the deck plates.
I didn’t do a good job of explaining how these Dorade Box vents work in last week’s update so hope this diagram will help. Simple with no moving parts as air enters the scoop or cowl and is turned 90 degrees down into the vent boxes that you see in the photo above. The air then flows up overtop the vent standpipes on the right here which you saw being welded into the hull last week, and then the fresh air rushes down into the interior space below.
Any water that comes into the cowl from driving rain or large bow waves ends up flowing down onto the deck plate on the inside of the Dorade Box and then drains out through the many slots or scuppers around the bottom perimeter of the box.
I received some questions about how to clean inside the Dorade Box and that is very easy to do as the cowl is fasted at its base by a threaded collar so they are easy to remove and give you a large hole to easily reach inside of for any cleaning and repairs that might be needed.
To further ensure that NO water ever makes it inside we also add these adjustable mushroom caps with fly screens to the top of those standpipes which allows us to reach up from the inside to control the air flow or shut it off entirely. We are VERY serious about having an eXtremely well ventilated boat and keeping all the water OUT.
Speaking of vents the Vent Boxes for the fuel and waste water tanks got finished up this week as well. We are super happy with how these custom designed vent and fill boxes have worked out. This is the Fuel Vent box on the Port/Left side of the coaming at the aft end of the side decks and the three U shaped 40mm/ 1.5” pipes are where the 3 big fuel tanks on this side vent to.
What’s new this week are the two vertical vents on the right which are for venting the Black and Gray water holding tanks. A flat plate cover with slots on the top will bolt in place to cover this all up flush with the outer aluminium plates and makes for a very clean and highly functional venting solution.
Just aft of the Vent Boxes are the similarly configured Fuel Fill Boxes and here we see them fitting out the prototype door to covers and seals this space. I don’t have a photo handy but inside these Fill Boxes they boys have also added the pump out pipes for the Black and Gray water tanks, similar to the new vent pipes you see above.
Both the Vent and the Fill boxes also have drain pipes in their bottoms which in the case of the Fuel Fill Boxes returns any diesel spills or overflow back to the fuel tanks and in the case of the Vent Boxes the drains take any water that gets through their vent slots back out onto the deck to drain overboard.
Down in the Basement this is the aft most of the three large compartments that will hold the three banks of batteries that form the House Battery Bank and they all had their floors and lid frames welded in this week.
Looking forward here are the other two battery compartments which lie right on center with the massive Keel Bar running right down the middle underneath these floor plates. The corners are cut out to help with air circulation as each compartment will be sealed up with a gasketed lid bolted to those new inverted L-bar frames.
There will be a intake air vent pipe welded into the upper left corner of the front compartment that takes fresh air down to the very bottom of the hull plate below the floor plates and then on the diagonally opposite corner there will be an exiting vent pipe so that the air will naturally flow through via convection. This air venting is primarily to help keep these boxes nice and cool though they are all below the waterline so they will pretty much always be at the ambient sea temp.
And yes I am going to keep you hanging for another week as to what type of batteries we will be installing here. They have not arrived yet and I have not had time to write up the whole post about the whole battery and DC system so you’ll need to wait a bit longer. But please do keep your guesses coming as to what type of battery we have decided to go with and why. While these batteries will stay nice and cool as you’ve seen above, some of your guesses have been getting hotter and hotter.
While we are down here in the Basement let’s check in with Cihan our Master Plumber for an update on his work this week. Cihan has been busy all over the boat and you saw his work above putting in the Hatch drains. Now he is down in the Basement fitting and installing the supply and return pipes into the integral fuel and in this case a Gray Water tank.
Here are three of these supply/return pipes and some of the elbows all laid out ready for fitting in their respective tanks.
This close up of the top end of these supply/return pipes shows how they are fastened in place using an SAE5 standard flange and bolt pattern to seal them to the tank tops.
And this is a shot of the bottom end of these supply/fill tubes. They are carefully cut at an angle to match the slope of the hull plates which form the tank bottoms and will sit a few millimeters above with additional holes to assist with the fuel flow in/out of these tubes.
And YES! I am fully aware that this is contrary to the popularly held misunderstanding that supply or pickup tubes should be kept well off the bottom so they do not pickup any of the dirt or sediment that might be resting on the bottom. BUT, think about that for a moment and this means that you will be setting up a very nasty situation where you will allow any debris or water to stay down on the bottom waiting for just the right time to get stirred up and suddenly sucked up in larger quantities with no warning and right when you least expect it with full assistance by Murphy’s Law. Not on my watch thank you! The right way to deal with this IMHO is to purposely put these pickup tubes on the very bottom to ensure that you are ALWAYS removing any debris or water down there as water and debris is heavier than diesel so sinks to the bottom. This means that your filtration and/or polishing system can be easily removing such nasties in small quantities as they form.
I believe this myth of keeping pickup tubes off the bottom of tanks comes from the automotive and gasoline world which typically has very minimal fuel filtration systems and mostly quite clean fuel AND they have drain plugs on the bottom of their fuel tanks should you ever want to drain off any water or dirt that may have accumulated over the years. But boats operate under very different conditions and are mostly diesel based and often as in our case have tank bottoms which are below the waterline so you can’t drain them and would not want to have such drain holes in the bottom of your hull in the first place. Even in cases where we have something like the Day Tank which is all above the waterline we will still run the pickup tube to the bottom of this tank for the same reasons noted above.
Most cruising boats have very good fuel filtration systems on them which can do a very good job of “polishing” or filtering their fuel in multiple stages. In the case of our XPM boats we step this up significantly by having an Alfa Laval centrifuge system onboard which is capable of removing particles down to sub micron levels using centrifugal forces rather than filtration material and can separate out ever drop of water. This provides us with a significantly greater capacity to keep every drop of our precious diesel fuel crystal clear and clean even if we somehow take on extremely dirty fuel or have some huge failure and have a large volume of water get into a fuel tank. Both scenario highly unlikely but we are building this boat to be fully “ready for the unexpected” and so we go to such lengths to ensure that we can always get where we want to go safely, efficiently and comfortably.
OK, rant over for now and I’ll be back in future updates to cover more details of our overall fuel system with the multiple levels of fuel cleaning and management as we are installing them.
Moving on to what was THE best bit of progress this week for Christine and me was the completion of the circular stairs leading up from both sides of the Swim Platform to the Aft Deck. When we left off last week Uğur and Nihat had cut out the upper corner where the vertical Transom wall connects with the Aft Deck plates and had started fabricating the first bottom step.
Uğur carefully laid out the step locations as per Yiğit expert modeling of these steps.
Each step was tacked in place on both sides ……
…. and Voila! the stairs make the transition from 3D images on our computer screens to this beautiful aluminium reality.
Sezgin sets up the MIG welder and maps out his strategy for laying down all the full welds to complete each staircase.
As soon as all those welds have cooled, the ever present Mehmet is in there with his trusty rotary wire wheel to clean up all the welds and the finished stairs are a sparkling beauty to behold.
Speaking of Beauty and sparing no expense I called in my Beautiful Bride and professional staircase model to show off this latest triumph of Team Möbius and be the first to try out these stairways to heaven.
Since then Christine has not been the only one to be grinning and appreciating having these stairs in place as all the rest of us can now finally use these stairs to get on and off the boat rather than having to go all he way through the Workshop or climb up and down that 1.5m transom.
Be sure to check out the short video at the bottom of this posting so you can take your own trip up and down these stairs!
Here is the view from the top.
Mummy our insulation wizard also got right to work inside the aft Workshop area to put in the 50mm/2” EPDM foam insulation on the newly added aluminium treads and risers where the stairs were cut into the top corner of the Aft Deck.
Last but certainly not least a brief update for all you Gardner engine fans that I also found a few hours this week to work on getting him fully rebuilt and restored to better than new condition.
Cylinder block in the foreground has all the new cylinder liners pressed in place and honed and the head surface machined perfectly flat.
Behind lies the massive crankshaft ready for new dampener plates to be installed in that large disc on the right side.
With the help of my handy dandy hydraulic hoist I was able to lift the massive cast aluminium engine block up off the floor and get it sitting upside down on the sturdy steel framed table.
This put it at a much more comfortable height for me to work on finishing the disassembly, here pulling out the camshaft as I finish stripping it back down and prepping it for sandblasting.
More details on all that in the coming weeks and I’ll leave all my fellow gear heads with this final shot at what a REAL set of main bearings ought to look like! And I’m not even showing the cross bolted rods that go through each main bearing block to really solidify this bottom end.
Here is a very short but hopefully fun video of the aft stairs going in and you can experience some of the joy of going up and down these stairs.
OK, that’s it for this week folks. You can see what I mean about this being a very hot week for progress and weather.
Thanks as always for coming along for this latest adventure and please add any and all questions, comments and suggestions in the “Join the Discussion” box at the bottom.
Hope your projects are proceeding as well and I’ll be back with another update next weekend.
What an amazing once in a lifetime build, appreciate all your efforts in bringing us along…
Thanks Gene. It is an awemazing adventure and way more fun with people like you onboard. Thanks for joining in and taking the time to respond. Much appreciated.
I too am amazed every time I stop by. Even more so by your generosity in sharing it with us in this form. Love all of the discussion & explanation! If you ever take her to some major boat shows (ie Annapolis or such), please give plenty of warning!
Hi Brandon, thanks for your very kind and generous note. It is always a challenge with written and somewhat static content to know what your audience reactions are so it is of great value to feedback such as yours and feedback of any kind to help ensure these blog posts are being of value and enjoyment and to continuously improve upon them. I’m a retired teacher and keynote speaker so I’m more accustomed to having a live audience, though some of my students did challenge the “live” part some times :), so having this asynchronous and low feedback medium is a big change. Christine is an author of thriller/mystery novels under her Christine Kling nom de plume, as well as a fellow retired teacher so she has faced the same challenges and helped me adapt and adopt this new form of communication and teaching.
All my typically long winded way of saying thanks for taking the time to add your contribution to the discussion and explanation.
We do indeed intend to be at some of the boat shows on the East Coast of the USA and if all goes well with completing the build and the launch we hope to cross the Atlantic next summer (2020) and be able to time our travel down the coast to be there on Möbius for most of the boat shows, Trawler Fests, etc. You’ll read about all that as it happens here on the blog once we launch and get under way and start heading West across the Med and making our decisions as to when to do the crossing and where.
Christine and I would love the chance to host you and any others who are interested aboard Möbius so you can experience the reality of everything you’ve been reading and watching here for so long.