Kaholee Refit | August 29, 2007

I began the day by sanding yesterday's varnish--on the coamings and cabin sole--as well as by sanding the varnish on the sea hood, which had worn somewhat during the boat's time outdoors and needed a refresher coat or two.  I cleaned up the dust, but left the varnishing for later in the day when I could do it all at once.

I spent all day working on the electrical system, and finally began some actual wiring.  I began by mounting the charging relay for the battery system on the panel over the nav station, since I wanted to ensure plenty of room around it; I held off on installing a 200-amp fuse for the system until I could better determine the routing of the cables later in the installation.

Next, it was time for some basic wiring.  After drilling the appropriate holes through the necessary structural members and cabinet dividers, and lining the holes with rubber wire grommets (where I could) or with lengths of hose that I cut to fit and glued in place, I started running 12AWG wire (red and yellow) for the various circuits, beginning with the cabin lights.  With the electrical panel on the port side, I wanted to run as many wires as possible up the port side of the boat to minimize wire lengths and difficult crossovers from side to side.  Still, there would be a fair bit of wiring required to starboard as well.

Along  with all the lighting circuits for the port side, I also ran the cable supplied with the new wind instruments for the masthead.  This required that I first take the reel of cable supplied and measure out enough cable to run up the mast to the hardwired receptacle there.  I left abundant extra length for the final run, and then cut the cable so that I could run the remainder through the boat up to the mast step area.  I also ran a length of coax cable for the VHF antenna, and four wires (three positive leads and one ground) for the Aqua Signal tricolor masthead/anchor light with strobe that I'd be installing on the mast later, plus a wiring pair for the steaming light.

For two overhead lights in the main cabin, I utilized the old wire chases from the abandoned sidelights in the cabin side.  Here, I chose some sheathed 2-conductor cable, since the white sheathing would be more attractive where it was necessarily exposed on its run to the fixture locations.  As I wired each circuit, I labeled the pairs of wires with a number and made a note on a pad for future reference.

With time running out at the end of the day, I decided to install several of the lighting fixtures and make the final wiring connections at the fixture, rather than begin the wire runs to the starboard side.  So I installed a reading light in the port v-berth, using an existing wire hole from the old light, and a second reading light on the port side of the saloon; I also installed the two after overhead lights.  I'll come up with some way to secure the sheathed cable so that it stays tucked into the curve of the overhead.  For each connection at the fixtures, I first labeled each wire with the circuit number, and installed some clear shrink tubing over the numbers for protection; then, I made the final connections with adhesive-lined heat shrink butt connectors.



I spent the last hour or so of the day working on the varnish, with another coat on the coamings, a coat on the sea hood, and a second coat on the cabin sole and hatches.


Total Time on This Job Today:  7 hours

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