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May 172011

Everybody knows that marine hardware suppliers tend to charge a lot of money for their products, right? Like just putting the word “Marine” on something instantly doubles the cost… I just had a rather funny example of this:

As part of the climate monitoring sensors we are putting on the Journeyman we are also mounting a weather sensor, in this case an Airmar PB200, which is actually quite a smart little unit. But it comes without any cables, so I ordered a cable and a NMEA0183 and NMEA2000 interface box. The cable and box cost about $200, and when the stuff arrived I open the interface box and find that it contains…. nothing. Well OK, there was a small bag of plastic connectors for manually splicing the cable conductors.

So the plastic box was like 3 times the price for a standard junction box (But then it wouldn’t have the fancy sticker, of course…) and I still have to do all the work of interfacing the cables myself. Nice move!

(Oh, and the best part: It has a sticker on the side with a serial number and the ominous threat: “Warranty void if this label removed”).

Apr 072011

If you’ve been following this blog you know that I am close to over zealous when it comes to power consumption. I just ran a test. 18 interior lamps lit at dimmed comfort levels. Running lights on. Main computer and all navigation instruments running. Stereo on and playing music. VHF and AIS radio on standby. Total power consumption was 6.4 A at 12V equal to about 77 watts. Not bad!

Dec 092010

So, in the spirit of “The list of things to do tends to fill the available time” I felt compelled to do a nice walnut outlet panel for the onboard computer USB outlets. Plus a standard 12V outlet. Maybe I will regret doing things like this in 4 months time when we have a total panic getting everything ready? I don’t think so, but what do YOU think :-) ?

By the way, the standard 12V “Cigarette lighter” type outlet is really a seriously flawed design, but since I expect lots of guests on board will be showing up with mobile phone and computer chargers for this outlet I figured I might as well install one!

Apr 092010

I am very happy to welcome Nexus Marine as partners in the Journeyman Project. The NXR Instrumentation System comes with outstanding precision and in my opinion clearly superior ergonomics, especially at night. Plus it has the Steering Pilot, an instrument which is invaluable when you are sailing with inexperienced helmsmen.

So I would have chosen their instruments anyway. But since they also like the Journeyman project and want to be part of it, the choice just got a lot easier!

Jun 092009

Nu så här i mellantiden innan jag drar till varvet för att delta mer aktivt i arbetet har jag roat mig med att ta fram en armatur för inomhusbelysningen i båten. Vanliga lampor drar alldeles för mycket ström, alltså använder man LED-lampor. I en båt som seglar dygnet om vill man gärna ha både vanligt ljus och ett dämpat rött ljus för att inte förstöra mörkerseendet på natten. Sen vore det ju fiffigt om belysningssystemet kunde utnyttja den marina databussen NMEA-2000 som ändå kommer att dras i båten, då blir det mycket mindre sladdar att dra runt.

Här är resultatet:

En Journeyman-lampa!

En Journeyman-lampa! (knappt 50mm i diameter i verkligheten)

Den här lampan ger många (>3) gånger så mycket ljus per watt elektricitet som en vanlig. Den kan ställas till vitt eller rött ljus, eller en kombination av dom två. Som en bonus kan man göra alla ljusändringar med mjuka mysiga toningar, och så kan man använda det röda ljust för att ge en varmare ton åt det annars ganska kyliga LED-ljuset.

Lampan kan också själv bestämma om den ska gå på på rött eller vitt när man tänder den, beroende på övriga ljusförhållanden i båten.

Kanske en lite överdriven detalj i Journeyman-konstruktionen, men jag råkar tycka ljus är viktigt :-) ….