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jetzi last won the day on June 22 2019

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  1. There was a thread about this a few weeks back, talking about the "swing bridge ahead" for paddlers on the L&L. I hope that it at least slowed the epidemic of paddlers paddling full pelt into the bridges?? These signs really are infuriating to see, completely useless being that they are within line of sight of the swing bridge, and since a few of the duly signposted swingbridges are in fact disused. So actually less than useless - inaccurate signage is even worse than useless signage. My pet peeve is shops that have a permanently illuminated "Open", which in my experience make up the larger proportion. It renders all "open" signs redundant because you can never know if it is accurate or not.
  2. I classed it as "other" and "narrowboat". From the questions it would seem probably not aimed at narrowboats, as I can't really think of any particular issues eating. Nor for storage really... I figure if storage is a problem, either you have too much stuff or your boat is too small or both.
  3. Gosh Alan, that sounds terrifying I am glad you, boat and family came out OK. What stopped the pump continuing to fill you up and sinking you? Just the fact that the water got into the tank and stopped the engines? Definitely think you did the right thing with the flare. Perhaps in retrospect you could have let the coast guard know that you had used one and managed to signal a boat as they suggested for a tow. But I would have thought they would be more understanding that this couldn't be a priority for you while you were in crisis. I like the CCTV on the engine idea. If you have it recording it could also help diagnose how things went wrong, as well as when.
  4. I will try hunt down the volt drop. But it is really kind of a feature rather than a bug, because especially in the absence of a cooling system i dont want to overload the alts. Yeah, I'm aware that disconnecting the warning light wire only stops the alternator from starting, not from continuing to charge once the engine is running. I have been using it this way for some time now since during solar season I almost never need to use the alternator, I have to restart the engine if I want to stop the alternator from charging. I'm aware that they can spontaneously start due to residual charge, but so far I haven't experienced this. In the case this happens, id be relying on the BMS shutoff.
  5. After a little experimentation, I connected my winter wire directly between the negative bus of my LiFePO4 bank, and the housing of the starter alternator. This has resulted in ~40A from the domestic and ~20A from the starter, which seems sufficiently low output to keep both alternators below 50 degrees centigrade. I tried a thicker cable here and got a similar result, but it looked like more of the current was coming from the domestic alternator in this case, so it doesn't seem like an improvement if I do that. I think I'll install a big on/off on my winter wire, so that I can have an extremely rudimentary version of Nick's "fast/slow" charge toggle, and then combined with my separate switch on for my alternators, I can have no charging, slow charging, fast charging. Rather ugly but it will do for the time being! I may spend a bit more time hunting down other sources of resistance to try to bring that 60A number up a bit, especially if I can do it in combination with more advanced alternator cooling, but 60A is sort of sufficient for my needs when outside of solar season anyway.
  6. It seems malicious not to put the water back if all they are doing is warming it up...
  7. What's the university data centre water extraction for? Do they use it to cool their systems or something?
  8. Oh man, you are really selling it to me now! 21 locks down and up doesn't seem that bad for such a prize at the end.
  9. Ooh, there's a guillotine lock at Slaithwaite?? Why didn't you say so, now I have incentive to go down at least the first 21 locks! I've never been through a guillotine lock gate before, would be nice to have a tiny bit of experience when I finally get to visit the East Anglian Fens!
  10. It's my belief that anything that makes you look like you're not on your boat does more harm than good, this is particularly true for boats with padlocks and bolts across the doors - whenever I pass one of these I tut. Lights on a timer is more effective IMHO than any deadbolt. Your aim is first to deter, and then second to slow them down. Looking like you're home is the best deterrent, because most burglars are after stuff, not people. Boats that are obviously locked from the outside have a negative impact on deterrence. If I was in the OP's position and the doors were really that flimsy that they couldn't be locked with a mortise type lock, I would replace them with steel doors. You'd have to have them fabricated though so won't be as affordable or as DIYable as a bar across the door. This is obviously hyperbole, but there is a ring of truth to it. If someone is determined enough to get in, they will, and this applies equally to tents, boats, houses and even bank vaults. I'd hazard that a steel narrowboat with portholes too small to climb through and lockable steel doors is just as secure as a house (bricks through windows work with houses too). The real risk with boating in my view is that it's often done in secluded areas that are good hunting grounds for opportunists. Ironically, despite all the London-bashers on this forum who seem to have no experience of it, London is very much not that. On the contrary, the boating community is very strong in London, even if only because you need to coordinate breasting up. In London I always know my neighbours, and they tend to be younger, fitter and more streetwise than the retirees on the rest of the network. As a result, if I was going away for a week, I would sooner leave my boat in London than on a towpath on the L&L.
  11. If the IG terminal is a voltage sense, then perhaps I can abuse that to get the alternator to put out current even when the domestic is running by connecting it to a lower voltage source?
  12. The reason I said it was strange was this logic - if there is current flowing through the ignition->lamp->IG terminal wire, which it must be in order to energise the alternator, at it must be energising given that it's producing current, then the lamp should light? My "winter wiring" actually has this length already to keep the current to around 50A in order not to overheat the alternator. Interestingly the resistance on my domestic alternator is on the negative. The current seems to not like flowing through the engine block to the negative cable. Thanks for the encouragement, I will try this and see if it makes an improvement.
  13. Great, thanks. I will try that. I managed to get the small alternator running in isolation by connecting the warning lamp feed to the middle "ignition" terminal, and no lamp connected to the lamp terminal. In this case the lamp doesn't light (strange) but the alternator does begin generating. In isolation, the starter 40A alternator shows 14.39V over the +ve stud and the alternator body while running. I read that it's generating 14A with my ammeter on the cable from the +ve stud. This dropped to about 12A once the alternator reached 60 degrees (as measured with an IR thermometer aimed at the windings). In isolation, the domestic 75A alternator shows 14.49V over the +ve stud and the alternator body while running, and generating 20A (only) at the moment. I tried to parallel them to see what happens, by connecting ignition on -> warning lamp -> IG on the starter alternator & D+ on the domestic alternator. In this case, both alternators read 14.45V across +ve and body, the domestic continues to put out 20ish amps, but the starter produces nothing. So I deduce from this that the starter alternator is regulated at a lower voltage than the domestic, and they can't simply be paralleled. (Of course the larger problem is that my domestic is performing poorly, I know how to fix that - I have my "winter negative cable" that I'll connect either once the ambient temperature is a bit lower or when I can set up fans and ducting)
  14. Thanks Tony, this is the alternator (https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/233826618617 I first of all tried to connect to the centre terminal ("ignition") but the lamp didn't come on, so then I connected it to the top terminal ("lamp"), which produced the behaviour I mentioned (light comes on when ignition on, light goes off on engine start, but alternator doesn't generate current). Like I said the one it's replacing only had 2 connectors so I'm just hacking it together for now - literally the wire goes from +ve battery terminal, to a switch, to the battery light, to the alternator. The wiring of my engine is an unholy mess The negatives are linked, the positives are linked with a VSR that kicks in once the starter is charged. The "domestic" alternator (my only alternator) currently charges the starter battery first. I want to set this up so that both alternators charge the starter first, then both alternators charge the Lithiums. In fact, I could probably just add the starter battery to the bank and just start the engine using the lithiums, get rid of the VSR and simplify the whole thing that way.
  15. First off, trying to get the original starter alternator to work in isolation. Couldn't get the old starter alternator to do anything in situ, so I installed my replacement. I removed the "energiser wire" from the domestic alternator and put it on the new alternator, so that the domestic alternator wouldn't confound the results and so that I have a wire that I know works. Turning on the "ignition" turns on the battery light (energiser), and when I start the engine the light goes out which suggests that the alternator has started to generate current. However, voltage measured across the alternator body and the +ve stud measures just a tad less than the battery voltage, which suggests that it's not doing anything, and my clamp ammeter doesn't measure anything significant out of the +ve either. I wonder if it might due be a slight difference between the old and new alternator terminals. Not including the main +ve stud, the old starter had 2 terminals, each with a connector that had 2 wires (2 pairs - total of 4 wires). I expect the one is for the energiser, and the other a tachyometer (that I don't have). I don't know why there would be pairs. The new alternator has 3 terminals and the main positive stud. So far I have only connected the energiser wire and the positive. That's all the domestic requires to function but I am going to re-read @Tony Brooks's alternator page and perhaps I'll learn there is something essential about the other terminals. Taking a lunch break now, but if anyone has any ideas that would be great
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