A Simple Mistake

Fishing on the Sarah River

After significant effort we’ve concluded the electronics issues that aborted our plan to cruise the Canadian Maritimes this season were self-induced.  In the interest of redundancy I installed a NMEA2000 rudder position indicator while we were at Atlantic Yacht Basin.  You wouldn’t think this would present a problem but, in fact, the additional cabling required drove the voltage reduction across one leg of my NMEA2000 network past specification likely leading to random loss of data.  The electronics tech we hired to address the problem didn’t discover this; nor did I at first.  It took much pondering, measurements with a Maretron N2K meter kindly loaned to me by Mike on N72 Kya, and my own Fluke recording multimeter.  The fix was easy enough; I moved the power taps on both legs of my network to better distribute loads and reduce the voltage drops to less than 1 VDC.   A number of other tweaks were also implemented.  These appear to have resolved the problem; the network is stable.  Moral of the story; never make a modification to your NMEA2000 network without doing the math.  Calculate the added voltage drop due to additional cabling, the impact of additional load (LENs), and the distribution of those loads.  Failure to do so can ruin your plans!

In addition to working on the electronics issues we idled away the entire summer on Chesapeake Bay.  Herrington Harbor South, Deltaville and York River.  For the third season we also had to deal with a threatening hurricane while in the Norfolk VA area.  First Joaquin, then Matthew and now Florence.  We weathered Florence at York River Yacht Haven and, even though we evacuated to the DC area because of the uncertainty of its path, Tivoli never saw over 25 knots.  Luckily, Florence made an unlikely turn south and spared us!

Next up is a road trip, then we will start our journey south to Loggerhead Marina in Vero Beach for Dec/Jan.  Then it’s back to the Bahamas and points south.  Can’t wait to get back to crystal clear waters, white sand beaches, and warm tropical breezes!

1 thought on “A Simple Mistake”

  1. Clayton and Deanna; sounds like your sail into retirement continues to go nicely, albeit with the occasional technical issues and hurricanes!  Mary and I will be in St. Martin (Grande Case) for XMAS (Dec 25-31), if you are sailing the area then lets have dinner and catch up.  Best, Bill 

    (PS: Post-CEO life is wonderful, but not as wonderful as retirement appears to be for you guys).

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