Electrical; chandleries; scuba gear

Quite a few accomplishments today, although none of them at the boat and some of them a little expensive.

Electrical system

This morning, I went over various literature I’d gathered and notes I’d taken and wrote down a sort of game plan for the electrical system.  Then, I went out to meet with the owner of Best Marine Electrical at his shop in Kaki Bukit.  I got some pricing information and advice from him on various things.  As I’ve come to expect here, he kept trying to upsell me on all kinds of stuff; mostly I said no, although he kind of convinced me with a couple items (mainly a digital panel monitor that incorporates gauges for multiple battery banks, water/fuel tank capacities, etc).

We more or less agreed on the major components to be installed/upgraded: DC breaker panels (20 breakers of varying capacities); ultrasonic tank sensors for at least the fuel tanks, and maybe the water tanks; a digital panel monitor; a nice and simple three-switch house/start/combine switch panel, where the combine switch can actually be removed to avoid curious hands from turning it inadvertently; and some basic AC breakers (probably just house ones instead of marine ones, although I haven’t completely decided yet).  The work will mainly be installing all that stuff, installing the battery charger and echo~charge, new core wiring, possibly moving the starter battery bank to the crawlspace where the house bank already is, and a little other carpentry to leave the location of the old AC/DC panels and gauges looking decent.

The electrician is coming to Oia tomorrow to plan things in more detail before putting together a quote.  He basically said the whole thing should take two weeks or less.  All the components will probably run about S$2k, so it’s looking reasonable to keep the whole project under S$4k, I hope (not including what I’ve already spent on the charger, of course).

It may be a bit of a challenge to keep the boat livable while the work is going on (particularly important since not only I but also Doug will be staying aboard), but I think we can probably just connect the cabin lights and water pump circuits directly to the batteries as needed.

Chandlery shops

After that, I went on an adventure to hunt down a couple chandleries I’d heard of but not yet seen.

The first one was Marintech Marketing in Jalan Besar Plaza (ironically about half a block from my old apartment).  I can’t believe I haven’t been to this shop before.  They are full of all kinds of great hardware, especially for sailboats.  Their prices are also significantly better than the little chandlery at One 15.  Mariner 10 B:C extinguishers S$40; big and shiny new fenders, S$50; Nicro day/night solar-powered vents, which I’ve been strongly considering replacing some or all of my cowl vents with, S$240.  For now I ended up picking up just 30m of cord for random use, and a simple clinometer, more for nostalgia’s sake than anything else.  I remember always looking at it on Skye, my grandfather’s boat, and getting excited when we hit 35 degrees or so.  Anyway, I’m sure I’ll be making quite a number of trips to Marintech.

Not too far away from there is ING Marine, another chandlery with all kinds of stuff, although they seem to be more mechanically focused.  I was drawn to their engine gauge panels, although mine works fine for now.  Friendly staff too, so I’ll go back.

Scuba gear

Last but not least I walked over to DiveShop@SG and bit the bullet on some scuba gear after getting sick of trying to find used gear, doing some research, and realizing they had a pretty good deal.

I had them assemble and test everything for me.  They also gave me some contact info for the company that (apparently) supplies scuba tanks to all the dive shops in Singapore.  I’m hoping the supplier will be able to deliver a tank or two to One 15 without much trouble.  If not I’m sure I can ask around the marina to find out where people get their tanks, as it’s pretty common to see workers diving under boats to clean.  I’ll probably aim to do that sometime next weekend.

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