February 24, 2020
Over the weekend, I applied the final coat of gray paint to the new cleats at the house battery location, and also applied epoxy primer to the fresh cleats in the engine room, so with that done I could move on first thing with getting the house batteries back in place and properly secured.
With the box and pair of batteries back in place and secured by the cleats and the hefty ratchet strap, I began by securing a hold-down strap over the batteries themselves, which would prevent any upward movement. I reattached the various wires and cables, this time with a terminal-mounted 100-amp fuse on the positive terminal, which I’d had on hand but simply forgotten to put in place when I’d initially installed the batteries earlier.
To secure the battery box top, I used the basic strap that came with the box and attached it to the plastic cleats at the top of the box with a folded double layer of the strap, large washer, and screw. This strap only needed to hold the top of the box in place. To accommodate the new strap over the top of the batteries themselves, I had to make notches in the side extensions of the top to allow it to fit over the top of the strap, but this was a straightforward modification.
With springlike and highly unseasonably warm weather outside, I had to take the opportunity to dig out my trailer and a couple of the boats that I planned to soon start working on, as the Scupper project inched ever closer to nominal completion, so this kept me out of the shop and in the glorious warm sun for a couple hours during the middle of the day. It certainly hadn’t been a hard winter thus far, but nevertheless there was a surprising amount of snow built up despite the frequent temperature fluctuations and no “real” storms to speak of, so with pending boat shifting ahead, it was a relief to get this head start on the process. I didn’t doubt there was more winter on the way, but spring fever was in the air.
I took advantage of the great weather and opened the shop door so I could raise the anchor the rest of the way onto the roller, leaving about an inch clearance to the door when I closed it, as if I’d planned it.
Meanwhile, I spent some time figuring out the issue with the two bilge pumps, which had not had power when I did my initial electrical tests. Eventually I found that a ground wire had been erroneously connected to a badly-labeled wire on the panel switches for each pump, when it should have gone directly to the negative distribution buss. An easy fix, once I figured out the problem, and both pumps tested operational thereafter.
I plugged a USB charger into the panel-mounted USB for a test (this outlet also had a green light to indicate it was turned on), and also tested the USB ports mounted in the light on the compression post and the two lights in the forward cabin–all operational. The two standard cigarette-lighter style outlets (one on the panel, one in the galley) were on the same circuit as the USB port, and thus should work fine, but I still had to round up something I could plug in to test.
To finish up the day, I applied the gray paint to the new cleats and battery locations in the engine room.
Total time billed on this job today: 6.5 hours
0600 Weather Observation: 20°, Fog. Forecast for the day: Sunny, 50°