Originally Posted by Johnny Mercer
I'm Johnny, the guy sailing with Gus, cheers for all your advice so far its been very useful!
I was wondering what you guys think of electrical
systems for boats? The boat we are looking at doesn't have one, is it okay to take normal battery's for things like GPS/radios of should we really be looking at sorting out a proper battery
or even generator
set up? If so what king would be best for a 27ft boat doing a long journey like that?
I we wen't for the non-electrical system option whay sort of GPS/Radio set up would be best/ how many batterys/what sort should we take?
In this scenario we would probably take tilley lamps/electric torches for light is this sufficient?
Oh yeah and do we need a mast
light? If so what kind is best?
Sorry I know there is a lot there but if you could offer further advice then that would be greatly appreciated!
Great to read the enthusiasm but suggest you do need to increase your knowledge by quite a margin before you depart. I don't mean that in any disparaging way - simply want you to complete the trip. OK?
Yes - it would be sensible to rewire in an electrical system
with a 'proper' battery bank. I'm surprised the boat does not have one already? I mean, how do you start the engine
? Indeed, has it got an engine
?? If not that may be a bigger job for you to consider first.......
To know how many batteries, the easy way is to add up what power you use in a 24 hour period. You can usually find out what each unit or gadget uses in amps, so simply multiply that by the time you'll use each in that 24 hour period, add it all up, and make sure you have at least twice (if not thrice) that amount of amp hours in your new battery bank.
Once you've got those batteries, you'll also need to ensure you've got the ability to recharge them. I suggest in a 3 hour period.
An example: If you total up 60 amps usage, you need batteries capable of holding 180 amp hours, and charging output of at least 20 amps.
It is unlikely you'll need a seperate generator to charge the batteries, your main engine generator / alternator
should be enough - provided of course you've got one!!
It obviously makes sense if one is relying on engine power to charge batteries, to make sure you can always start. So consider splitting the battery bank and retain enought power dedicated to starting that engine - using only the rest for domestic / lights etc.
I'm guessing you are on a budget
so a hand held GPS
would suffice, but while having back up small batteries to insert it would make sense to also power that off the main battery banks all the time you can. Same same if you go for a hand help VHF radio
Lastly 'Do you need a mast light?'
Yes, I am afraid you do. A tricolour lamp will save on amps but you also need an all round white anchor
lamp as well. You could possibly consider a tillylamp or oil lamp
lamp - but respectfully suggest maybe easier all round to stick with electric
. IMHO unless you are very competent, oil
lamps can represent a hazard on the water
Hope this all helps. Do not apologise as you've actually not asked a great deal, and it's good that you are asking. But by the sound of the level of sailing knowledge you are expressing and the state of this boat, I hope you are not aiming to depart any time soon.