brimm - no we sold Dawn Treader right before Christmas. My oldest is about to head to college this fall so our summer cruising is over for a while. The plan now is to buy a cruising cat in the next 2-3 years in the Med and hang out for a while then see where the wind blows me next. In the mean time - it's the beach cat on the lake, baby!
On your battery locations - I see now. We had a Phasor generator in that space behind the bulkhead so that wasn't an option.
Keep us updated. I'll be interested to see how you rig everything for your trip. Are you keeping a blog for the trip?
Ah, bummer about the Hunter but congrats on the future cruising cat and the beach cat.
If I manage to fit the batteries under the bed I was considering adding an additional diesel tank back behind the bulkhead. I could totally see a genset fitting nicely in there.
We're casually vblogging and have a facebook page for the boat/trip but not a dedicated blog. I think the wife is also putting stuff on instagram or something but I'm not totally sure. Will definitely try and keep checking in here more often (famous last words) as we make our way south. Links below for our YT/FB feeds.
While we don’t have the solar charging component out set up is similar with 6-6volt Lifeline gal-4ct AGM with an echo charged odyssey AGM spiral as a starting battery.
Our last set lasted 10 years so I am surprised to see yours lasting only 6. Do you ever equalize/6 desulfate the lifelines. They are the only AGM which I know of you can do this. You seem knowledgeable so I assume you know the importance of trying to get back to 100% charge . I like the Lifeline also because of their smaller footprint.
We bought our third set 3 years ago so hopefully I won’t need new for 6 years but will watch this firefly tecnolgy and build quality as I like the increased cycling they claim. You are the gineau pig . So please keep us up to date,.
Lastly you are mixing wet cell and AGM when charging? Thought that you shouldn’t do that. What do you set the charging on?
We just bought the boat a few months back and there are some gaps in our knowledge of the maintenance history. As far as I can determine 2 of the batteries are 6 years old and the other 4 are 8 years old. I do know that the previous owner left the boat unattended 7-8 months of the year with the batteries just getting whatever charge they could from the solar.
Since we've taken the boat I've tried equalizing twice before we left the marina but didn't notice any difference. That said the local Lifeline dealer here told me that I might need to try it a few more times before I give up. He didn't seem super confident that it would help given what I know about their history but figured I don't have much to lose in trying if I'm going to replace them otherwise. After a 'finished' charge my OCV is still only 12.2v to 12.4v at most so they're definitely in poor/sulfated shape.
We'll be headed to the dock soon and I'll try to equalize the crap out of them and see if they're recoverable before we give up and order replacements.. fingers crossed but expectations low.
If I do have to replace them and I order the Fireflies I will definitely be a guinea pig and will let everyone know how it goes.