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  1. Hi all, I've been working on my boat and thought it a wise decision to touch base to benefit from anyone else's advice. I have the following setup: Shore Connection Socket (Charges batteries from 220v shore ) 3 Pin 220v Shore Connection > 50A Fused Isolator Switch > Automatic Inverter/ Charger > Consumer Unit > the rest of the boat. 220v Solar PV to Leisure Batteries (Powers 12v leisure batteries from solar panel energy) 215w Solar Panel > MPPT Charge Controller > Automatic Inverter/Charger > Inline Battery Fuse > 2 x 12v Batteries in Parallel. 12v Battery Connection (Powers electrics when not plugged into a shore connection): 2 x 12v Batteries in Parallel > Inline Battery Fuse > Automatic Inverter/Charger > Consumer Unit > to the rest of the boat.
  2. Hi all Looks needing to use power tools on the 2kw pure sine inverter. When running these large loads with high inductances how wise is it to push the inverter? Or should leave a good over head like push no more than 1.5kw? Thanks again James
  3. I'm in the process of taking over maintenance of a lovely narrow boat that my dad's getting too old for unfortunately. I'm very much a newbie and the kindness of local boat people has got me pretty far. However, while I've managed to install a new leisure battery and so have power, I need to do some maintenance that means plugging in a drill, but none of the 240v sockets work. I've tried flipping the switch on this control, but it had no effect. With each setting I continue to get power from the battery, but never via the sockets. Am I warm, or barking up completely the wrong tree?
  4. Can anyone help? I’m changing my batteries to AGM and need to install a DC/DC charger (CTEK D 250SE, which I have). I’m not sure if my battery is even using a battery charger at the moment. is that possible? I’ve tried to install it but I’m not confident enough to be sure it’s done correctly so I was wondering if any boaters on here have experience with installing this charger? Or if anybody has a number for a boat electrician who can help that wouldn’t break the bank (London, W10 area).
  5. Hi Everyone, I am hoping you might be able to help. I am having a 60ft semi-trad josher built for initial use as a leisure boat but with a view to being a 5day a week live aboard within a year of splashing her. I am a bit of a geek and really like the remote monitoring capabilities of the Victron kit via the Cerbo GX but am really not sure whether the following is the full electrical supply and distribution spec or if I have missed anything? I am also thoroughly confused at to whether a travel power unit is entirely necessary given I will have dual alternators on the Beta 50 including a 175amp domestic alternator as well as a starter battery alternator. I really would appreciate a quick review of the following or if someone is electriclly minded a wiring diagram???: Beta marine 50 with dual alternator and remote oil filter as extra (+ other adaptions we discussed) 3.5 KVA travel power (unsure if this is required given the spec below would appreciate some advice) 4 x Victron Lithium LiFePO4 12V - 100Ah battery with Bluetooth 3 x Victron Smart Battery Sense - 10 Meter Range 1 x 12v load dump battery (lead acid) 1x 12v starter battery (lead acid) 1 or 2 bow batteries for bow thruster (lead acid) Victron smartshunt Victron Lynx Distributor x 1 Victron Lynx Power In x 2 Bluesea isolator main switches 3 x Vicron VE.Can resistive tank sender adapter (1x blackwater, 1x fuel, 1x water tank) Victron Multiplus Inverter Charger 12/3000/120-50 Victron Cerbo GX Victron GX Touch 50 screen Victon dc-dc convertor (unsure if required or sizing. If installed is a dump load battery required?) Victron Digital Multi / Quattro Control 200/200A GX Victron Smart CL BMS 12/100 Shore Power - Galvanic isolator - Sterling Power ProSave E 30AMP 1 x Victron 150/35 SmartSolar MPPT Controller - with in-built bluetooth technology - https://midsummerenergy.co.uk/buy/solar-panel-kits/foxes-afloat-canal-narrowboat-600W-flexible-stick-down-solar-charger-kit-with-victron-smartsolar-MPP 4 x 120W Miasole Peel and Stick Flexible Solar Panel - with 5 year warranty 2 x Pair of 5m solar cables with MC4 connectors 1 x 1.5m Harness 10mm2 with inline fuse 4 x Waterproof Double Cable Entry Glands – black Victron Bluetooth Smart Dongle Victron MPPT Control Monitor Cheers guys Steven
  6. Can anybody help me sort this out? When I bought my boat it came complete with a non functioning Eberspacher D5W. I was told it needed a control board and we agreed a discount on the basis that it wasn’t working and that the part has being sought then when it arrived it would be forwarded to me. However when it did arrive some 3 months later the vendor said I would have to pay for it which is not what I thought we had agreed. I thought the discount was for my inconvenience and the fact I would have to fit it myself or pay someone to do it. Long story short I still have a non-functioning Eberspacher. I have posted 3 pictures of what I have. I do not need automation or remote control or a timer, I am happy to turn it on and off manually. It would just make more sense to me to be able to brew up a tank of hot water without running a 2 litre Diesel engine for a couple of hours. As you can see from the pictures I have a heater, a wall mounted box and a pull switch on a knob. When I connect the heater to the box with the plug and socket by the heater unit (both present and correct) and turn it on nothing happens. So can anyone tell me what is missing and or what I need to do to make this kit functional. In anticipation of your useful advice and replies, Thank you. David
  7. Martinb

    Sr3 charging

    Hi all. We have a air cooled SR 3 with one starter and 3 new 130ah leisure. We are noticing that despite cruising for 5-6 hours we are not getting above 12.6 at most. We are running a 2000w inverter and 240v fridge. We have a single alternator charging the batteries. Even if we turn off the inverter when cruising it doesnt get any higher. Any ideas why we are not getting a full charge as we are finding we can barely last 24hours with not alot running.
  8. Hi there new to the community so I hope it's alright to create a new thread. The narrowboat I'm currently looking to purchase is set up with an alternator, 3 new 12v batteries, no inverter, mains cabling throughout. There is also a generator on board. I'm sorry I can't provide specifics at this point, but even general advice much appreciated. If I continue with the purchase, I'm intending on putting on 4 Renogy 100 Watts 12v Monocrystalline Solar panels and doing my best to use the engine for power as minimally as possible (going into winter I realise that the solar is not going to give much power). The current owner will also be putting on a new 12v Fridge if I go ahead with the purchase. The appliances I intend on running would be a toaster, iron, TV, record player, iMac (I already own this and not looking to replace it), Laptop charger, Mobile charger. I'll be replacing all the current lighting with LED. There is currently a Washing Machine on board but the owner says its best to remove it as its on the mains (makes sense, although I would consider keeping it if anyone could provide a realistic solution). Stove and oven will be gas, have yet to decide on a water heating system. The current gas boiler is defunct. Currently considering a new gas boiler or a back boiler for the burner (no burner currently on board looking to purchase) to fuel hot water (taps, shower) and heating (there are radiators throughout but I'm not sure if they would be necessary once I purchase the burner - she's 63'. To be clear I will not be mooring up and 'plugging in', so everything needs to be off grid power. My knowledge is limited so being completely open, I apologise if my questions appear naive any support appreciated: Is it better to consider investing in a good inverter, or should I look at transformers on an appliance by appliance basis? If primary usage was 12v, would installing an inverter affect functionality or can you run both 230v and 12v with an inverter? I'm not particularly keen to keep the generator but would anyone advise that I do and why? Instead of an inverter or transformers would anyone's opinion be that I simply run the engine (with alternator) when using non-12v appliances, and why? I want to reduce emissions and costs from over using the engine unnecessarily wherever possible. Will the current 'all mains' wiring cause any problems with purchasing 12v appliances e.g. the fridge. If I wanted to consider keeping the washing machine what would you recommend having in place? Thank you for your advice.
  9. Hi, I have just looked at a 36ft Springer (perhaps early 80's) narrowboat for sale, priced at 10,000, as a project boat. No survey yet - owners have had her for 3 years, in those years they have replated on both front and stern after a survey, and blacked and annoded once (now due for renewal) The project: 1. Pre-purchase: Survey + It is due blacking, annodes and engine service (potentially the costs of this, and any replating needed, could be deducted from 10,000 boat cost) 2. Interior Hull: Need to create access in the floor to the interior hull as it there is currently no hatch etc. - Whilst doing the floor, thought would be a good idea to swap (apparently lumps of metal) ballast for engineering blocks, and, do work on the interior steel hull if needed (wire cup brush, rust treat with Vactan, and overcoat with something - bilge paint OR red oxide???) - Then insulate, plywood boards, and wooden board flooring. 3. Panelling: Taking down wall and ceiling boards which have been B&Q bodged in, to be able to redo with nicer wood, but most importantly, electrics and plumbing. 4. Wiring: There is wiring for 12v and 240v, however 240v is not plugged in at the moment, and the owners are running off solar (owners don't trust the wiring) SO would need completely re-wiring the solar (as it is currently just strung around the boat), utility battery for ceiling lights, 12v sockets and 240v sockets, and waterpump for shower/water. 5. Plumbing: There is also plumbing, but they currently don't use as they removed the old watertank, and currently run off a jerry can of water for the sink, and a cassette toilet. The plumbing also currently runs under the floor, so all old plumbing needs to be ripped out, and replumbed in the wall cavities - would like to plumb in sink, shower and potentially septic tank toilet, and then need to get a new watertank. 6. Other Misc: There is a working gas oven and hob, which seems to be fine and functional, so maybe gas is ok? Also a good, working coal/wood burner. Although engine needs a service, she ran well, when they took us for a 1 hr cruise, i think it is a Lister aircooled engine. So, if the survey all went well, does this sound like too much - In all honesty this would be my first narrowboat, but I am on a budget, hence only being able to afford budget boats. Time is not an issue, although being able to live in it by spring would be great. Main questions; - does the tactic to restore the inner hull sound like an ok approach, if it needed doing? What is the realistic expectation for the steel interior hull of a 80's Springer? - is wiring/plumbing possible to do myself, or is it needed to have a professional for BSC and insurnnce? In which case, how much could i expect for full plumbing/wiring? - what work could i expect to do myself, and what should i look for quotes for? Any advice will be HUGELY appreciated in terms of costs expected, or time taken, or regulations to adhere to when doing up a boat. This boat, technically is liveable, as they have been fine for 3 years, but needing this work, what price for it would be realistic? Thank you!
  10. Hi there, I am in the process of buying a narrow boat, sail away hull. I have been trying to do many calculations to figure out all of the electrics in the boat. Please tell me if i have got any of the following wrong as im finding that i'm a little stuck. The residential mooring i am planning on using has a 16 amp pylon for a power supply. I have been looking at an Alde 3020 for the heating system attached to a 40l Calorifier for the hot water. The Alde system uses around 1000w which is around 4.3 amps, the Calorifier has a 1kw heating element in it so that's another 4.3 amps. Would you need to use the heating element or would the alde heat provide enough to heat the water on its own. I also have been looking at a standard fridge to cut down on the cost. These at their max they are 750w so that's another 3.3 amps. Then with a microwave oven using 1850w in use max so thats 8 amps. In total that's around 20 amps. That's not including all of the little things in the boat. The main thing i am asking is a) Has anyone got an alde and does it use less current than my calculations. 2) Would i have to use the heating element to heat the hot water up all the time or is the adle enough. 3) are the pylons at the CRT residential moorings defiantly 16amp Thankyou in advance. For extra information. I am getting a 50ft Sail-away to live in the centre of Birmingham
  11. Hi all. So- new batteries, new inverter, added 2x100w solar panels and STILL off grid power seems to drain. Take last night. Had to run engine for 2 hours to get to 12.6v. Bed time 12.3v. This morning 11.3!! Only thing running is the fridge at 35w and the inverter on power save mode at 0.2w. Any thoughts?? Would be welcomed.?
  12. Hello! Having lived off grid for 3 years, using only the 12v system I find myself in a marina with the opportunity to connect to shoreline and I was wondering: 1. Can I use 12v devices whilst connected to the mains? 2. Does the mains hook up charge my batteries? Thanks in advance.... Diana
  13. Hi All, I have a ford 1.8xld with Bosch alternator, also the boat has a smith industries tacho, which has never been connected. I have searched and found links from other sites, as I understand it the Tacho is wired to ground and to the 'W' terminal of the alternator. See pics. As you can see from the alternator picture, the 'W' terminal appears to be missing, I am assuming that I will have to connect my own terminal her, probably by soldering. Is this correct ? The second picture is from the back of the Tacho. Assuming this is the wiring diagram, single ind is a single alternator setup, dual ind, for a dual alternator setup. So if I am reading correctly, 'W' connector from alternator, to pin 1 of Tacho, pin 2 of Tacho to Ground. And now if I wanted to connect the second Alternator, then the same for pins 3 and 4 ? If any one can just confirm or deny, been a while ( 18 years ) since working on this type of equipment.
  14. Hello, First post here so please be gentle! haha OK, I'm literally weeks away from getting my 60' sail away. I will be a continuous cruiser liveaboard and regularly moving around the canal and river waterways. Engine is a Canalline 42 with 1x 50A and 1x 175A Alternators. I'm planning on getting a Webasto water heater/boiler too to compliment multi fuel stove. I have done some sums and require around 120Ah a day for things like, 12v fridge, pumps, boiler, laptop, TV, lighting, phone charging etc. (Actual is 80Ah but I wanted a good amount of wiggle room). I'm planning on filling my roof with solar and would like to use Victron equipment (apart from solar). I'm planning on: 5x 285w Monocrystalline Solar Panels totalling: 1425w (It has an approx 42' cabin / roof space) 1x Victron SmartSolar 100A MPPT Solar Charge Controller 1x Victron BMV-700 Battery Monitor 1x Victron SmartSolar LCD display 1x Victron Multiplus 1600VA Inverter 70A charger 16A relay 12V I'd like to use solar as much as possible to power my needs but haven't decided upon batteries just yet. I'd like your comments on qty and type of batteries I'd need to keep everything tip-top, if I'll need a generator for the winter months (likely Honda EU2.0i using LPG). Is the above all too overkill or will I struggle in the depths of dark winter? I would like to use a washing machine every so often but if batteries would get hammered I can use Generator for that. (obviously not on hot washes). I'll be getting an electrician to do the install (apart from solar panels on the roof). Thanks Jono
  15. We currently have four 6 volt leisure batteries and they seem to be in a bit of sorry state, with one of them bubbling acid and therefore potentially dangerous. Two of these batteries are Trojan T-105 and the other two appear to be cheaper unbranded alternatives. Due to other ongoing expenses on the boat we're looking to replace these with minimum cost and are thinking of putting in two 12v batteries instead. I'd be grateful for any advice on this and recommendations regarding specific batteries that would be suitable alternatives. As far as i understand the Trojan T-105 batteries have a very high 225ah capacity, giving us a total capacity of 450ah if replaced like for like, compared with probably about half that if replaced with two reasonable quality 12v alternatives, but I suspect we could probably get away with this. We've only been boating for a couple of months and it would be interesting to read the advice of others and to learn what set-ups they use themselves.
  16. Hi all, So my solar cable got cut due to the way the cable was running through the bracket, I have gone to buy some solar connectors from maplins, can anyone confirm these are the right ones. The lady in the shop was surprisingly unhelpful... This is what I got : http://www.maplin.co.uk/p/maplin-cn40-a020-high-power-solar-connector-n55ln Is it as simple as just fitting this connector? or should I replace the whole cable Thanks for your help Martin
  17. After 5.5 years it has come time to replace the batteries in our leisure bank. Because of miscellaneous access, placement and space factors ‘built into’ the boat by the original fit-out, our present leisure bank consists of two 170Ah and one 105Ah battery. They are all sealed wet batteries -- same type; same brand -- replaced new at the same time, but different sizes. I was going to simply replace all with the same again, thinking 5.5 years (CCing for most of that time; 200w solar topping up in season) doesn’t seem bad. BUT I have recently been advised that as the two 170Ah batteries will be ‘overworking’ or ‘pushing’ the single 105Ah battery, adding that single 105Ah battery wasn’t really adding much to the bank. At least not as much as I might think. I didn’t have a chance to clarify this at the time. Can anyone shed some light on mixing different sized batteries?
  18. Hi I noticed, when I took my boat out on t' cut this weekend, that my inverter beeped every now and then. It stopped too quickly for me to see what the issue was but I'm guessing it might be my 240v counter-top freezer. I'm assuming that when the freezer kicks in there is a surge of power being drawn. I've tried to find out what the wattage rating is for my freezer, but even the manufacturer's website doesn't reveal this. I've attached a photo of the label on the back of my freezer and I'm hoping that someone marvellous on this forum with better electrical knowledge than me could shed some light - what do you reckon? Cheers Adam
  19. My Nespresso machine refuses to work when fed by my non-sinewave inverter or by my generator. Is there a smoothing gadget available that might improve the waveform of my A.C.? I don't want to spend hundreds!
  20. Hello, We have just put a deposit down on our first narrowboat and although its are very exciting, its a little daunting so we am looking for some advice. It currently has a Eberspacher hot air heater under the bed - does anyone know about these, is it worth keeping? This is what the surveyor said An Eberspacher D1L hot air heater was installed under the double berth in the forward cabin. There was a thermostat and control unit in the cabin. Ducting was no longer connected to vents and some joins in ducting had been made with duct tape. Recommendation Either decommission Eberspacher hot air heater or commission a qualified engineer to inspect the heater and its installation prior to its use. We are just wondering whether its worth keeping hold of and getting serviced or whether we should just get rid of it? Also any recommendations for an electrican and also a gas engineer in london would be very much appreciated. Thanks for your time. Emily & Juan
  21. Hi all, For a while I've been toying with the idea of buying a narrowboat to continuously cruise along the London Canals, for a few weeks or so I've been doing a fair bit of research but for some areas I still haven't found the answers I'm looking for so thought I'd turn to you guys to see if you can help me out at all! Apologies in advance if some areas have been discussed already and also, if any of the questions sound silly... I really am a complete newbie to this... 1. As I mention - I'll be CC along the Canals in London, so have been researching what distance as I need to travel each week, obviously don't want to take the mick and want to stay on the right side of Canal and River Trust. However, their website isn't totally clear on how far - all I can see is that in a years licence, 15-20miles is expected, which seems more than fine. But how far is the minimum? Just for an example, say I started in Little Venice and was travelling East, how far would I need to travel to satisfy the Canal and River Trust for say one weekend I didn't want to travel 'that' far? 2. Which brings me on to my next point - as I read, each 14 days would be the time I top up water, which would top up my batteries (as I'm moving) and usually empty the loos out. May seem like a silly question but are these water points at regular intervals? Similarly, to electric points? (if I needed it half way) Also, are loo-emptying-places at regular intervals also? 3. Again, brings me on to my next point of water storage tanks and electricity batteries... my budget is around 25k and aiming for around a 40ft-er trad steel narrowboat so from what I've seen, many don't have a tank or seems quite small. If so, can this be retrofitted and to what cost? I understand becoming more frugal is all part and parcel of it (which I'm excited about) but for say a 10/15minute shower a day - what sort of tank should I be looking at to tide me over for two weeks? However, I guess this would hinge on question number two! In terms of electricity, I don't watch a lot of TV but would like to charge my phone, listen to music, have lights! Where should I even start with what to look for to tide me over 2 weeks again? 4. I guess this question is more to the nitty-gritty when I view but what are the main tips/points you'd recommend to look out for a bad conditioned narrowboat? Is there such a thing? Don't mind buying something that requires a bit of modernisation but in terms of 'behind the scene' stuff, what do I look for when looking at an engine? At the electric board? Heating system? Or should this all be taking care of at survey stage? Anyway, I think that's probably enough for now on my first post. I really would appreciate any tips/answers - no matter how big or small! Really excited to be buying - just need to get my head around it all first!! Speak soon, Nat
  22. Hello All, So having recently bought my first canal boat I am slowly adapting to canal life, and following lots of helpful advice from this forum I am having some new electrics installed (solar panels, inverter, batteries etc.) And taking some advice from other forum member I am now going to address my lighting and plug socket (more USB ports and LED lighting !!) So what I would like to know can anyone recommend some LED ceiling lights, are these straight forward to change from what I currently have, they look like a small flourecent tube. Is it just a case of changing the wires? Would I need to put a fuse in the cable line? Also what cables do people recommend for their 12v electrics and any tips on where to purchase these would be really apreciated. I would also like to install car lighter type plugs or usb plugs and wondered if anyone could recommend a good one of these and is it simple to just 'insert' these into an existing cable ring. Do I need to be careful how much I run off one ring, should I install a fuse as well? If so what type is good? Any advice greatly apreciated. Thanks for reading Martin
  23. Does anyone know what the diameter/pitch is on an A127 shaft thread please? I am pretty sure it's some variety of M17 but can't remember whether it's M17 x 1.0 or M17 x 1.5, and I don't have the alternator handy to measure. N
  24. Good evening everybody. This is my first post here after joining so forgive me if my questions are a bit basic (or thick). I am serious about moving on to the water to live. It is something I have been wanting to do for a long time as bricks and mortar are not really for me. However I am a complete novice when it comes to the world of canal boats. I have been on them and even stayed on one before but I have never been involved in owning one or knowing anyone who has. And so before I buy a boat which I have seen I have a few basic questions relating to making a leisure boat suitable for living aboard, and please forgive me if these questions have been answered a thousand times before. And so in no particular order, if anyone could help me with these questions to start: Survey: Not knowing much about boats I assume it would be sensible of me to have the boat surveyed first, can anybody give me a rough idea of costs involved? (I was chatting to another boat owner when I went to view it and he had worked on the boat and said it was in really good order mechanically,had low hours on the engine, had recently been blacked, and had a long safety certificate etc... Plus he said it was the same owners for 14 years and they looked after it really well and this is reflected by the overall decent condition the boat was in when i viewed it) Electrics: The boat currently has a 12V system running the lights and a 12V fridge. As I have a small number of appliances which would require traditional mains sockets what would be the most cost effective solution to providing power for these? Batteries: The boat has been up for sale for quite a long time (over 9 months i think) and the owner only comes out every now and again to turn over the engine and occasionally take her out. Is there a simple way to check the state of the batteries or would I need to rely on a full survey? Hot Water: The hot water is currently supplied by this method: 'engine cooling water circuit is fitted to a vertical calorifier' - As i understand it I would need to run the engine every day for a couple of hours or so to provide hot water. What is the best/most cost effective alternative to this system so that I could have hot water without running the engine? Heating: The boat currently has a solid fuel stove which is connected to two radiators for heating. Is this the most effective way of heating the boat or are there better alternatives? These are the most basic questions I have at the moment and I would really appreciate any advice you all can give (after browsing the forum for a while I know that have more money is probably the most valuable advice). Finally, my plan is to be as independent as possible which means not using a residential mooring and so having limited access to on-shore power so any advice on starting up, converting a leisure boat to a live aboard or any other general advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for all your help Dave
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