New Batteries for Time2

Lynn & Mike ..around the world
Mike Drinkrow & Lynn v/d Hoven
Wed 13 May 2015 04:44
New Batteries for Time 2:
After being home for over 6 months we have returned to Time2 at Magnetic island. She is looking good after being well taken care of by Kerry (Marina Manager) and our friend Mark. Other than a lovely new section of the Great Barrier Reef growing on her undersides and some dust inside – she looks exactly as we left her.
While we were away, Mike ordered a full set of new house batteries – we replaced 4 in Bora-Bora which did not work out well.  Four old and four new batteries resulted in uneven charging causing the batteries to start to fail. So Mike took the plunge and decided on 8 new ones - GelTec 8D8G 225Ah . Given that these batteries weigh 75kgs each, we had a job ahead of us.
Mark had kindly received the shipment to his house on the island, and kept them on his truck, ready for our return.  He kindly lent us “The ute”, while he is still away on holiday.
Anticipating the difficulty of lifting these very heavy batteries into the boat,  then into the lazarette, and then further back into their slots at the back of the boat – Mike designed a system.  A system to make the job much easier and also to save his back.  This system involved a 1:28 gear-box hoist, powered by a battery drill, for the lifting. He also made an aluminium gantry (rail) so that the batteries could be lifted and then slid into place as he lowered them. All this equipment (including the 1.6m aluminium rails) was made in his workshop at home, and flew with us from Cape Town. And YES.... there were a few airline challenges!
After picking up the pallet of batteries we made out way to the marina, where Riley (marina asst) gave us some help. We lifted each battery on to a trolley, wheeled them slowly, one by one, down the ramp to the boat on a floating marina.  Here are 4 of them on the dock ready to be loaded.
We then lifted the batteries into the cockpit at the back of the yacht with ropes and the dinghy crane. (Sorry there are no pictures of that, but had no free hands to take pics.)
At this point Mike put his system in place – first to remove each of the old batteries and then to put in the new ones. The old batteries were lifted, slid out of their position with the rail, and into the lazarette. Mike then had to move the system up into the cockpit, so he could now hoist the batteries out of the lazarette, on to the cockpit deck.  This whole process was then reversed to place the new ones.  All in all, over over ONE TON of batteries had to be moved. 
The gear-box hoist in operation                                                                                            Mike in the hole
Being the good engineer that he is, Mike’s system worked very well. That, along with a lot of determination and boat yoga – resulted in 8 batteries being replaced over the next 2 days.
An arrow showing where 4 batteries must go                    In place, behind all sorts of equipment