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Old 26-01-2009, 18:43   #31
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Reduce production by managing consumption ...

Just reinforcing what others have said about controlling consumption within comfortable limits. This is often just as important as 'investing' in technology and - in the process - buying into increased maintenance, dependence on shore support, etc.

Some options for managing demand that can be cheap or very cost-effective are:

Turn stuff off more often (engines, appliances, etc)
Replace incandescent bulbs with high output LEDs (e.g. >=1W Luxeons)
Install saltwater taps (dishes; in W/C handbasins; etc)
Lather up & jump overboard (vs. ?daily? showers)
Minimise use of inverters & 110/240V AC appliances
For some, life without fridges & freezers (see ?November's? Cruising World)

First, 'tone down demand', then worry about 'increasing supply'.

Just make sure you keep everything you need, and the things that make you most happy. One of the things that I try to keep is my partner ...
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Old 26-01-2009, 19:24   #32
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Loved your post ... I agree strongly with your comment on toilets, and just wanted to add a point of information:

Quote:
Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
There is no health need for sewage treatment in salt water as the salt does in the nasties in short order.
This is true for bacterial nasties, but not for viral nasties. These include viral pathogens causing ear, nose & throat, gastric ailments, etc.

Problems can occur when wave action re-suspends viruses that have been concentrated in sediments under shallower anchorages ... This can be important to swimmers, people washing dishes in seawater, etc.
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Old 27-01-2009, 16:09   #33
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A normal deep cycle lead acid house battery is all you need. Where wood is plentiful I prefer a wood stove, far cheaper and simpler.
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Old 31-01-2009, 10:05   #34
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... We conserved by purchasing 1 1/2 gallon bug sprayers. We sprayed each other, soaped up an sprayed each other off. We got really efficient and could take two complete showers with one fill up, or 3/4 gal each shower for two...
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Great idea. I can't wait to give that a try - sounds so much more efficient than a sun shower.
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Old 31-01-2009, 14:17   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roverhi
There is no health need for sewage treatment in salt water as the salt does in the nasties in short order.
Quote:
Originally Posted by roger.waite
This is true for bacterial nasties, but not for viral nasties...
Unfortunately, the addition of simple organic matter (like poop), and other factors, substantially reduce the bactericidal power of seawater.

Factors Affecting the Survival of Bacteria in Sea Water ~ by A. F. Carlucci and D. Pramer
Factors Affecting the Survival of Bacteria in Sea Water
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Old 01-02-2009, 13:02   #36
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Unfortunately, the addition of simple organic matter (like poop), and other factors, substantially reduce the bactericidal power
The message is simply that we need to limit what we pump out near beaches & other yachts, and what we do pump out is best discharged further out at sea ... whenever we can.

Even in the most pristine waters, E. coli (the bacteria most commonly used to indicate faecal contamination) can survive many days. E. coli counts, for instance, keep mussel harvesting operations closed for up to two weeks after heavy rainfall ...
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Old 07-02-2009, 14:43   #37
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How far is far enough?

So how far out do people go before pumping out?
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Old 07-02-2009, 15:18   #38
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Quote:
So how far out do people go before pumping out?
3 miles is the requirement.
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Old 07-02-2009, 15:27   #39
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3 miles is the requirement.
Aye. And thats where we go, I was wondering if others were more conscientious and went further (I'm sure there are some who pump out in anchorages and keep quiet about it). Anyway - didn't mean the hijack the thread, which is pretty interesting!
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Old 10-02-2009, 19:29   #40
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3 miles is the requirement.
That is the US requirement and probably several other nations BUT>>>>
you will find many differences between adjacent nations for different types of pump outs. Some in the West Indies are far less than 3 miles and even that is not actively enforces for most private cruise boats. Often it is anyplace outside the harbor entrance.

At this time, it is really up to the individual sailor, since minimal if any enforcement outside the US and a few other typically larger countries or individual harbor authorities is actually practiced.

We should all look after our and our fellow cruisers health along with the locals where we cruise. I've seen some anchorages that I would hate to fall into much less take a swim or bath in!
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Old 10-02-2009, 20:54   #41
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New Zealand requires at least 500 metres from shore, and 500 metres from any marine farm. There is also a minimum depth requirement.
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Old 10-02-2009, 23:03   #42
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How big you use is the next question. I would have a very small freezer and a reasonable ice box. The bigger they are the more power they use. It's the electricity question not the refrigeration question. We all would love a lot of fridge space but we all don't want the job of making electricity and the costs that go with it. It is your number one power consumer on almost every boat that has refrigeration.
The power required for refrigeration can be reduced drastically by using lots of insulation. As a point of reference, on our Manta 40 we have a 5 cu ft fridge, and a 5 cu ft freezer for a total refrigerated space of 10 cu ft. This is considered very large by most cruiser's standards. It has 6 inches of insulation in every direction, including the lids (top loader). It is 12v powered (adler barbour cold machine) and draws 5 amps. In the tropics it consumes about 90 amp-hours a day, in New England it consumed about 60 amp-hours a day. This is a lot less than many boats with smaller fridges.

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If self sufficiency was my goal, the absolutly last thing I'd have is refrigeration. Other than it's voracious appetite for electrons, they are just about at the bottom of the list for reliability. The amount of time wasted in stinking, hot, polluted commercial boats by boats trying to get their refrigeration working seemed to overshadow their time spent in pristine, deserted anchorages. Refrigeration was, by far, the biggest headache and cause for misery and divorce.
This has not been our experience. In over 3 years of continuous cruising our Adler Barbour has never failed us. Other than defrosting every couple months, it has required zero maintenance. No headaches.

After refrigeration, our next biggest consumer of electricity is the water maker which consumes about 1.5 amp-hours per gallon of water made (Spectra Gulfstream 400). A watermaker provides a lot of comfort for the power consumed. If it is sunny and windy, we make more power than we can possibly use and can even rinse the decks with freshwater.

We recently replaced our incandescent masthead anchor light bulb with an LED bulb. The old bulb drew about 1.5 amps or about 18 amp-hours a day! The new bulb draws about .1 amp or about 1.2 amp-hours a day. The LED bulb is just as bright and saves me nearly 17 amp-hours a day. With the savings I can make an extra 10 gallons of water a day. This simple change is one of the cheapest, easiest, and most worthwhile upgrades you can do. They now make LED bulbs to retrofit just about any masthead fixture.

Another way to save power often overlooked is to turn off your inverter (for boats equipped with an inverter). An inverter can draw a lot of power even if there is no AC load. A no-load current of 1.5 amps is not unusual for a large inverter, and I've heard some reports of no-load currents even higher. This adds up to 36 amp-hours a day (or more) wasted. Install a remote switch for your inverter that will allow you to turn it off when you aren't using any AC equipment.

We often cruise for 6 months or longer without going to a marina or taking on fuel or water. The only thing we need to go ashore for regularly (other than entertainment/sightseeing) is to pick up fruit and vegetables.
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Old 11-02-2009, 12:58   #43
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The fridge decision is as much philosophy as fact.

On the topic of "living off the grid", a 100 amp hour plus daily draw is something that many of us will choose to avoid ... but technology certainly allows us to generate this at costs in noise, time, space, etc.

We can all live very easily without fridges for periods of weeks, but they undoubtedly add some quality of life. Purely because I have no fridge on my current boat, I can live for two weeks without burning any fuel for charging, installing wind generators, etc. And I dislike living too close to engines that only run to generate power.

Whatever we choose to carry, we should all know how to live without refridgeration and watermakers, and carry the supplies to survive a good while without them. If only in that sense, it is good that people raise the option of turning off the fridge.
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