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Old 15-08-2007, 16:54   #1
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More New Guy Questions.

Ok today I spent the whole day looking at boats in Deltaville Virginia (just looking at the boats made me happy and VERY calm) and I have narrowed down my search for a boat to a Hunter between 31 and 34 feet long. But after another day of shopping I have a few more questions.

1. On a few older boats the deck and cockpit seemed chalky and left dry white chalk like patches on my arms or legs where I brushed or touched it. Is this Bad? Is it easiely fixed? or should I stay away.

2. I know nothing about electricity other than it can shock you. SOoooo if a battery says it has 400 amp hours does this mean I can run something that draws 100 amps for 4 hours before the battery dies (this is an example).

Sorry for the stupid questions but the more I look the more questions I have and I have now found that most brokers if you ask silly questions look at you funny and try to find other people to help.

Thank you in advance my none judging friends.


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Old 15-08-2007, 17:24   #2
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The chalk is usually nothing to be too worried about and can be easily fixed using something like Woody Wax Ultra Gloss Compound. It really works if you follow the directions, wipe on/wipe off. It beats the crap out of regular compound and a buffer. The main thing to be worried about is if the chalking is hiding anything like bad scratches on the gelcoat.

The answer to your second question is no, well yes, but no. There is a great book called the 12 volt bible that was covered in a recent thread. It will get you to the know enough to be dangerous level. There are some guys here who know their electricity and they can fill you in on why you can't discharge a battery fully better than I.

Woody Wax Ultra Gloss Fiberglass Restoring Compound
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Old 15-08-2007, 17:28   #3
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Thank you for the reply I will try to find that thread.
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Old 15-08-2007, 17:59   #4
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Echo Pura Vida - chalkiness by itself is a natural a probably condition of aging gel coat. It is easily remedied with compound/wax or other treatments. However, it may be a indicator of other neglect or lack of maintenance.

Theoretically a 400 amp battery bank will provide 100 amps for 4 hours. However, in practice you do not want to discharge your batteries more than 50%. And, how you charge/maintain your batteries has a lot to do with how long they last and how much reliable power they produce. This is both a science and an art, and you need to do some research.

H31s and H34s provide an excellent cruising platform for the money. My wife and I cruised an '83 H34 from Florida to South America and back. Although no one considers these to be 'bluewater' boats, they are perfectly suitable for coastal sailing/island hopping, and an '83 H34 crossed the Atlantic this year:


These boats are now approaching 25 years old and as with all boats of that vintage, condition/maintenance is a significant issue. Nevertheless, they are excellent performers even when loaded down with cruising gear. For owner reviews of these boats, go here:

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Old 15-08-2007, 22:50   #5
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Not to be insultive, but just in case...

There's a big difference between AC and DC power. So make sure when you're adding up watts, amps, and volts, that you remember that they're apples and oranges. For example, you can (in theory) draw 100 amps at 12 volts from a 400 amp battery, but you might be able to get 6 amps at 120 volts from the same battery.
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Old 16-08-2007, 01:30   #6
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A given battery exhibits a higher useful A/H capacity, if the battery is discharged on a smaller load (C-rate), or over a longer time period - and vice versa.

For a simple explanation of battery capacity, see
Battery Physics ~ by Cameron Motor Works
Battery Physics
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Old 19-08-2007, 09:26   #7
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Old 20-08-2007, 00:43   #8
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I was something of an electrical ignoramus until I picked up Nigel Calders Boatowners Electrical & Mechanical Manual.

Very enlightening!

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