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Yesterday was a big work day on the boat. To begin, we had Sheldon, our Raymarine technician, scheduled to install our new suite of instruments. He spent the better part of the day fitting them to the helm station and connecting them together with our new AIS transponder. For those who are curious, we now have (partially) installed:

  • Raymarine C95 Chartplotter
  • Raymarine i60 Wind Instrument and Masthead Transducer
  • Raymarine i50 Depth Instrument
  • Vesper Marine XB-8000 Class B AIS Transponder

When completed, all of these things will be integrated together and as a bonus, should be able to share data wirelessly to our iPads. Sheldon still needs to return this morning to run some wires and to make a trip up the mast to run a cable and install the masthead unit. After that, we’ll need to complete a bit of a sea trial to ensure that the autopilot is configured properly into the system.


Christmas in September!

Tying the components together.

Our Raymarine guys were not the only tradesmen that we had on board yesterday though. As our refrigerator had not been getting as cold as we thought it should, I decided to enlist the help of Basil, a very well-known refrigeration technician here in Grenada, to check it out. After a bit of troubleshooting, we received the verdict that our fridge compressor was toast and would need to be replaced. I subsequently learned from other friends who have had Basil work on their boats that he almost never says that something is beyond repair. The fact that he said so in this case means that it must really have been shot!

Our fridge and freezer compressors.

Fortunately for us, Island Water World, a 60-second dinghy ride across the lagoon, had the compressor we needed in stock. Before the end of the day we were back in business. Like Sheldon, Basil plans to return this morning to ensure that everything is working well with the fridge and freezer, and to give our AC units a once over too.

While all these guys were doing their things, Rebecca and I were still plugging away on the watermaker. We even shanghaied our friend Kirk when we found him at Island Water World and dragged him back to the boat to help. The three of us together were able to achieve a significant breakthrough on the installation: we found a way to run the product water from the watermaker location to the area where the water tanks are located. This has been the biggest obstacle for us in the installation (so far) and I hope, now that we’ve crossed that bridge, we’ll be able to get the unit pieced together in relatively short order.

This photo does not do this contorted position justice.


  1. A great post down the road would be the end result of buying the boat from Moorings (in your case) and what the boat cost to make all the changes/upgrades. It would be interesting to see how your budget equated to actual costs. Many people look to do the same and the added costs are and should be part of the final overall number of what the boat actually cost.

    • Obviously our intended purpose is influencing our upgrades. People not intending to charter in the same manner would not likely need to invest all that we are. Fortunately we had a large budget set aside for the refit.

  2. Mike – we have the same equipment list with the exception of the Vesper AIS. What made yo go that way rather than the Raymarine? We have the Raymarine and report no problems. Just curious. Thanks Anthony

    • The Vesper unit was brought to my attention by Jeffrey from Active Captain. I visited their site and liked the way it was designed to share data wirelessly. I really didn’t do much research beyond reading some reviews on the net. The Raymarine unit might be as good or better but I know nothing about it.

  3. All sounds good.

    Why are there 2 chains round the back of the wheel?


  4. I stand by my long-held, never-disproven assertion that anything to do with refrigeration systems is a Type 1 Royal Pain In The Backside.

    It sounds like you folks went into this with a pretty good idea of how much refitting would be involved and how complex (and tedious) it would be. It’s an important lesson to understand; time and time again you see folks who want to cruise, buy an older boat, start fixing up “just a few little things” and, two years later, have to be carried out of a half-gutted engine room in a straitjacket. There’s something to be said for going in with an honest understanding of what it’ll take.

  5. Mike,

    (sorry if I missed a previous post)

    If the boat is ex charter, and is going back into charter, why do you need so much new kit, why if the fridge compressor toast? Were these things not pick up on the per delivery report etc? (I recall a post about a local surveyor when you were picking it up)

    As above though, would be interested in a “with hind sight” post 😉

    Very jealous as always!


    • The vessel was a bareboat charter boat and we intend to offer luxury crewed vacations. Not the same thing at all as far as we’re concerned. As for the compressor being toast, the fridge still worked… a bit. It just wouldn’t get cold. A survey, no matter how thorough, will never pick up everything. Only by living and cruising on a boat will you really locate all of her issues. Hind sight is wonderful, I wish I had foresight instead of it though.

  6. Your in the thick of it now buddy! I bet your both loving the pace and loving your new job. I’ll go out on a limb and bet you a beer, I predict 3 or more booked charters by the time of the show. (Y)

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