Day Three - Solar Charger Charging

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Fri 17 Dec 2021 02:00
Noon Position: 38 32,5 S 139 52.4 E
Course: SE Speed 6 knots
Wind: NE F4 Sea: slight
Swell: SW 2 meters
Weather: overcast, mild
Day's Run: 99 nm

The jury wire that I ran between the solar panels and the battery bank yesterday afternoon proved conclusively that the existing wiring run was defective. I was getting the correct voltage but less than an amp of current with the old wiring whereas with the new length of wire the multi-meter showed a good seven amps coming through. I bit the bullet, cleared the cockpit locker and the lazarrette of all their contents and made good use of the calm conditions to strip out the old wire and run the new wire in its place. Now there are no joins between the panels and the solar controller. Hopefully this fix will eliminate any more problems with the main panels for the remainder of the voyage.

One important thing I need power for is the new SSB radio. I have established a daily radio sked with Mark on Coconut and Wayne in Tasmania and it is proving to be an invaluable link. Wayne is an experienced sailor and Ham radio operator and as our dedicated shore base he is able to provide good safety back up as well as personalised weather reports. And being able to talk to Mark is a definite boon to ship's company morale.

The wind returned late yesterday afternoon, a light E'ly breeze, just as I was restoring all the gear that lay about the deck. Once Sylph's decks were cleared for action, I reset the jib and Sylph picked up way on the right heading. We have made satisfactory progress overnight and we are now beam reaching in a light NE breeze.

All is well.