Progress continues this week installing the seemingly endless amounts of EPDM foam on every interior aluminium surface while the focus shifted to fabricating the Fuel Vent boxes to match up with the Fuel Fill boxes you saw last week. Grab a comfy chair and a beverage and let’s go check it all out.
After trying many different materials and designs for the Fuel Vent boxes this is what won out. Keeps it in all aluminium so no dissimilar metals involved and building these mitred U tubes made from 50mm/2” OD thick walled aluminium made it possible to create the inverted U shapes in this very small volume. Plus they look so cool!
Reminds me of my more youthful hot rod days welding up header pipes and intake manifolds to eke out more power from my many car projects back then.
Picking up where we left off last week, here is one of the two Fuel FILL boxes all welded into the Port side coaming at the aft end of the side decks that run alongside the Pilot House.
The Fuel Vent box will be installed directly in front of this in the blank space to the left in this shot and both will have sealed lids that bolt in place with thick rubber gaskets around their perimeter.
Check out the video at the end of this post to get a better idea how these will work.
Seen from the inside, here is what the finished Fuel Fill box looks like. The smaller 25mm pipe on the right is the drain that will safely return any spilled fuel that is captured within the Fill Box back to the fuel tank.
One of our big design goals was to eliminate having spilled diesel fuel getting on the decks or into the water when “bunkering” as filling up our huge tanks is called. If you compare the photo above of the outside view with interior shot you can see how big the catchment volume is, capable of holding as much as 15 litres but with the big drain lines not much would accumulate.
Here is a close up of the internal Vent U tubes tacked in place inside the Vent Box
Uğur, who is the one who is basically responsible for this wining design, quickly TIG welds all the pipes……..
……….. and soon has one Fuel Vent box ready to be installed.
It is quite unusual to have fuel come out the vents, especially when our tank tops are over 2m/6.5 ft. below this but we’ve put in a similar drain line as the Fill boxes to make sure any spillage, usually just foam if any, drains back into the fuel tanks.
Uğur soon has the rectangular hole cut and the Fuel Vent box tacked in place on the Starboard side.
As many of you know from filling other boats, unlike the automatic shut offs in gas stations which mostly avoid spills, when filling fuel tanks in boats you know when the tank is getting full by listening carefully to the air whistling as it leaves the vents. So having the vents very close to the fills like this, really helps us hear this important sound in the often very noisy environment of a large fuel bunkering area.
Here is what the Port Fuel Vent box looks like this from the outside looking aft.
If you look closely (click any photo to bring up full size version) you will see the Fuel Fill box with its lid closed in the background and the Fuel Vent box cover grill is laying on the side deck below.
We will have two different types of Fuel Vent Box cover plates, one with demister grill on the upper area to allow air in and then a solid plate that we will switch to when leaving the boat for longer periods of time so that humidity in the air cannot get into or out of the tanks and allow some water to condense out and into the fuel. A small detail but an important one for us and another example of the joys of designing and building your own boat!
Speaking of joys, check out all this EPDM foam insulation going into the ceiling of the SuperSalon area!
The hull sides have more uniformly sized areas but as you can see here in places like the ceiling it is all very irregular shaped surfaces so much more time consuming to custom cut each piece of EPDM to be just the right size.
Right size is just slightly larger than the actual area by about 5-10mm/ 1/4 –3/8” larger so that there is a slight compression fit to keep each edge sealed tight against the next so measuring and cutting each piece of foam is time consuming.
The Engine Room was MUCH faster and easier to insulate with all its large flat equal sized cavities. The protocol we have worked out for all the EPDM insulation is to wrap each stringer and frame with 10mm thick first and then fit the 50mm thick pieces between such as what you see here on the WT Bulkhead at the end of this photos
The side walls were all fabricated from 50mm L bar in a grid you see here and this made it easy to fill all those cavities with 50mm EPDM and then cover the whole wall surface with a layer of 10mm.
Next all these surfaces will be covered with Alucobond which is a sandwich construction of thin aluminium sheets on either side which are anodized white (or other colours) and bonded to a thicker (5mm or so in our case) core that can be made of a variety of materials such as this fibre based one we are using in the ER, Workshop and Basement.
This provides us with a perfect surface for mounting things on, is all white so reflects light well and cleans up very quick and easy.
Alucobond is also available with different cores such this aluminium honeycomb for the core which creates unbelievably stiff and light panels. Our Galley/Kitchen countertops will likely be made using this aluminium honeycomb panel with thin sheets of stone such as marble or granite. Gives us real stone countertops that are featherlight. More on that in future posts.
This is a fabulous material to work with as you can cut grooves on one side with a router bit or circular saw, which let you bend the sheet as much as 135 degrees or put in a parallel series of such grooves to bend the sheet into a round corner. We will be using these various types of Alucobond in many different places on Möbius so stay tuned for more.
I will leave you with this slightly humorous shot from up on Möbius’ decks looking down on the shop floor as the boys moved the SkyBridge Solar roof out of the way for now. It will give you an idea of its size which is such that each of those eight open frames will each have a 360W solar panel mounted to them to form the actual roof over the SkyBridge.
It’s been very busy with all the behind the scenes work on designs and details as we ramp up for installing all the systems, equipment, interior, wiring, plumbing, etc. so I didn’t get too much time for taking and editing videos this week but here is a sped up look around video from this past week.
We really appreciate you taking the time to come along for the ride with us and please add any of your comments, suggestions and ideas in the Join the Discussion box below.
See you next week!
Will the solar panels charge a battery storage system?
They sure will Elton, and an Xtremely big one as you’d expect. We’ll have two 24v House Battery Banks, each consisting of twelve OPzV 2v Gel cells and will give us a total capacity of about 50kWh to hold all those amps coming out of the solar panels. I’ve gone with 2 banks so that we have fault tolerance to be able to still have one bank if a cell fails completely in the other and then sized these battery banks to be so large so that even if we happen to consume a VERY high amount of say 400A @ 24v = 96kWh this would still be just 20% DoD (Depth of Discharge). Lower DoD = longer cycle life = longer battery life. We think we could get as much as 20+ years assuming we keep them fully charged every day and have not major incidents with the batteries. Hence the big solar output.
For many boats the size and weight of these monster batteries wouldn’t work as they measure 855mm / 34″ high and all together weigh in at 1720 kg, however in our case by installing these in dedicated battery boxes which are right down on the keel, the weight is a good thing as it does double duty as ballast.
So for us, these are the just right fit.
Should have known you’d have it totally aced! Sounds like it would be good for a lot of houses too!! 🙂
I just took a look at my past 12 months of Hydro bills. They vary from 53 to 139 Kw-Hrs per day in a heat pump heated, 4200 square foot home. So 50 Kw-Hrs of storage is pretty respectable on a boat that is going to be mostly in tropical climates I assume. Sounds like you may not have a “Hydro Bill”!! LOL
Hi Elton. Being almost completely self reliant for generating and managing every form of energy we consume be it from our solar panels or batteries or alternators, what we “pay” the most of is attention to efficiency so as to keep our “bills” as low as possible. As you are seeing we are focusing on efficiency in every regard with Möbius and these XPM style boats by designing efficient systems and choosing efficient components. Things like insulation are a big part of this as having an Xtremely well insulated boat pays us dividends throughout the entire life of the boat with reduced energy requirements for both heating and cooling to Goldilocks our interior climate to be just right, just for us no matter what extreme end of external climates we are in from sweltering tropics to freezing high latitude locations. We hope to go to all of the above and experience the full spectrum of climates and hence the need to have such an Xtreme Xploration Passage Maker to make all our passages both Xtremely safe and Xtremely comfortable.
So yes, we certainly do have a “hydro bill” during construction of the boat and with the purchase of all the equipment, but once she is built we expect that our daily/monthly/yearly bills will be very low. Time will tell so please do hold me to this once we launch and get to see what our actual energy consumption and generation is.
Spring has definately sprung here in Antalya so hoping it has for you too back in the Great White North?!
great job on the bunker system!
Also like the approach to the Alucobond panels, as I used to work with them and they are great. When you use that as a galley worktop, I assume you have the sink sitting right on the Alucobond with a cut out (sealed) and not flush or below it.
I’ve spent the better part of this month, catching up with your blog. The vessel your building is amazing. Unfortunately I just missed the Eurojackpot winnings of over 50 million €, yet again. I’m however grateful for the opportunity to live out my dream through this blog. Keep up the good work and thank you both // Baloo
I don’t know much about lotteries but I understand that there is always another one you can try for Baloo! 🙂 Thanks for the kind comments and it is encouraging that you and others are finding the blog to be of value. We enjoy chronicling this fascinating project and get much out of both posting and more so the questions and comments we get so please do add yours as they come up and welcome to the voyage with us.