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Old 11-05-2016, 10:30   #16
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

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Originally Posted by captmikem View Post
Just one added piece of unasked for advice; Don't be afraid to carry sail, many folks I have spoken to during that crossing complain about the roll and motion, and after speaking to them I find they have a small jib and a double reefed main and it is blowing 20 to 24 on the stern or quarter. They were under-canvased. Speed is stability. I have carried a chute all the way across on three trips, but a 130 on a pole and possibly a single reef in the main is also a great set up.

Michael
You are so right. The roll on our Swan48 was horrible. The narrow beam and deep keel acted like a pendulum...it was awful.

But when we flew the spinnaker, the boat settled down to an easy, greatly reduced motion. We kept the chute up day and night until it shredded in a sudden squall. We started in late November...so we had bad weather and trouble finding the trades. Your advice is good...wait till January....but what about xmas in the Carib?
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Old 11-05-2016, 10:39   #17
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

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We kept the chute up day and night until it shredded in a sudden squall.
I know that feeling, lost a chute just at dawn with an Alden 54 about half way across in a little morning squall. Got the 130 up on the pole and did about the same days run after that though. Swan is a nice boat. Always good to carry two chutes....
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Old 11-05-2016, 10:55   #18
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

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You may want to review your power mindset, or else wait and have it reviewed by the ocean.

My wild (but not ignorant) view is that you may have no clue of how much energy you will actually use.

One good option is a small genset. Another good option is huge solar area and maybe a windmill too. And do not over worry your alternator setup unless you have a high spec marine regulator for it.

Your battery bank size is pretty irrelevant - you can only use what you make. Making the power is the challenge, not storing it.

I will give you only my humble example and then I shut up - do your own calculations and lay out your power plan accordingly. My only tip: vasty oversize your generating capacity. Too much power is not a problem (similar to too much fresh water).

Our boat is a small typical K-25 koster with extremely narrow end. We carry 150W of tilted solar (plus the alternator). We only use the following consumers onboard: - VHF with AIS (passive), - gps, - LED nav light at night, - ssb receiver (for radiofax), two LED interior lamps (about 1 hr a day. Our consumption is 10 to 15 Ah per day. Our battery is 110 Ah plain banana.

You may have noticed no fridges nor autopilots nor TVs. Crew of most frugal two.

Our boat, crew and lifestye are puny and marginal compared to yours.

If you think of all the things you have onboard and the number of crew, you will easily need in excess of 100 Ah per day. Make sure you can produce this much.

Or cut down you consumption. A boat does not have to be like a house. Not out at sea.

Have fun, make sparks ;-)
b.
Excellent advice. If you haven't made a passage or spent a lot of time living on board with your current battery and charging system you should do so before heading across the ocean. It's a lot easier to make changes and upgrades before you go than in the middle of the Atlantic.
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Old 11-05-2016, 12:15   #19
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

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Originally Posted by captmikem View Post
I know that feeling, lost a chute just at dawn with an Alden 54 about half way across in a little morning squall. Got the 130 up on the pole and did about the same days run after that though. Swan is a nice boat. Always good to carry two chutes....
Not only did we lose the chute, but the halyard block at the top of the mast exploded from the force. I'm just glad we didn't lose anyone overboard trying to get it down/aboard.

Here's the actual boat:

http://www.nautorswanusaeast.com/boa...an-48-kara-mia
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Old 11-05-2016, 13:06   #20
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

I would also second the post xmas departure... we listened on the ssb in November, December to boats getting either way too much or too little wind. Jan/Feb has been the sweet spot in most years.

I would also agree with carry lots of sail. But I would favour twin head sails so the drive is all up front and dragging you along. Using this configuration the boat actually self steered and the autopilot had very little work... saving lots of power.

Just prior to departing the Canaries we met a minamalist german couple on a catamaran. I asked them what watch pattern they used..they replied 'we turn off all the lights off and go to bed at sunset'. Boats on that route frequently sail a gps/chartplotter driven course and for the first few days all we saw were other yachts. I moved south of the line and did not see another vessel until 100 miles out from Trinidad.

Many years ago on a trip from Sri Lanka to the Maldives we found a dozen yachts within 2 miles of us at dawn... half of whom had no navigation lights..... moral of the story is to get off the rhumb line on a busy cruising route.

Ross
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Old 11-05-2016, 13:38   #21
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

Hi guys!

Excellent advice. The Norlin 37 has three forestays, and one backstay and two "bardun" backstays.

From bow to stern:
Forestay
Inner forestay
Babystay (to strenghen rig in hard wind, especially head wind to avoid it pumping back and forth, not mounted normally)
Bardun stays (to strenghen rig in hard wind, especially head wind to avoid it pumping back and forth, not mounted normally)
Backstay

On the sides many wires, don't know the english terms sorry.

I think this rig is ready to go for the Atlantic, no need to enhance. It's a Selden, well maintained, stuff replaced etc.

The forestay has a rolling genua.
Inner forestay, no rolling genua.

I agree with the guy running Morgan's Cloud that you should work on deck once in a while. With that in mind, and the fact that we have a limited budget, I am inclined to keep the current config and not mount a rolling genua on the inner forestay.

The sails are in good shape so we'll enhance them with the local loft and we will walk up on deck to mount the one on the inner forestay. Limited storage space so seriously considering not bringing any spinnaker.

I am used to sail without rolling genua from previous boat. Will get a fourth reef in the mainsail, like Skip Novak suggests in his YouTube series. Will not get a trysail.

We'll experiment before we go. No mainsail, just two headsails in the tradewind, poled to each side with the spinnaker poles.

I like the idea of the towing generator. This guy doesn't agree:
See attachment, I translated it using Google translate.
Here's the original in Swedish:
http://www.sycirce.se/erfarenheter/14

Better to have a propeller on an axis that you lower into the water, than using ropes?

We hope to catch some fish underway. Could interfer with a towing generator?

We will have Windpilot Pacific on the boat, so no power hungry autopilot. We got an autopilot as well, but we won't use for the crossing we hope.

The fridge will be useful the first week or so, then maybe we can turn it off? Unless we catch a big fish. Have an air cooled compressor. Hope it'll work so I don't have to mount a water cooled one. Just another project...and time is limited...

If I can find very flexible and light solar panels we could put a few on the sprayhood.

Hinges on the arch sides, sounds a bit complicated, but good idea. Question is, how much can the solar panels protrude aft from the top of the Arch. The arch will typically not be very wide on top.

Seems diesel (the topic actually) is not an issue anymore. Thanks for ruling that out. Will bring a few spare cans like you suggest.

The Norlin 37 is +9 tons, so incorrect figures at sailguide. The lead keel is 3,8 tons and almost 2 m deep. Rudder is protected by skeg. A bit small for this journey maybe but robust. You hardly feel the weather at 13 m/s when sleeping the aft cabin.

Cheers
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Old 11-05-2016, 14:00   #22
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

A bit more on the power consumption. In my experience the fridge is not that useful after the first week (unless you have a freezer). There is just not that many foods that are good to eat after 1 week at 4 degrees C. So F you start with an ice packed fridge and turn it off after the first week, it will not be a big draw on your power needs. You still need an alternative power source, either solar or towed generator in case your engine has a problem.

All this advice though is helping you make a one off crossing. What do you plan to do afterwards? If you will be cruising around the islands and beyond you will need more permanent solutions such as a bigger fuel tank, a water maker and larger solar. It would be easier to install these now vs. at the islands.

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Old 11-05-2016, 19:44   #23
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

Interesting photos with the towgen. My folks have one, it seems to work well for them, but they havent gone offshore with it yet, just a few thousand coastal miles. Just thought Id mention it as it would be a cheap install and easy to sell or shift to another boat in the future. Yes it messes with a fishing lure very badly!

Plastic jerry cans are good for rowing ashore and refuelling. Can be handy.
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Old 11-05-2016, 20:19   #24
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Re: Proper sized diesel tankage, Atlantic crossing

We went Las Palmas to St Maarten in 2015 and used only a gallon of diesel to charge our batteries (no motoring). We had 475 watts of solar, and even with the clouds, it was still enough most of the time for our autopilot, fridge, radar and all other electronics. We like cold drinks so the fridge stayed on... it also was used for left over food so we could cooked only every other day. You'll be fine. The wind is pretty constant on that route.

Also use an AIS alarm. We were shocked at how many large ships were going to have cpa's under .5 miles had we not been in contact with them.


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