20 Days of Boat Work

Please follow and like us:

It has been 20 days since we arrived here at Puerto del Ray marina, where we returned to Island Spirit after 16 months of storage on the hard. When we launched, all systems fired up and all systems seemed to be working fine. That is until we put them to the test.  Several systems needed work and service and one died and needed to be replaced. It is a B.O.A.T. and we all know what that stands for. It was expected after all this non-use. Boats do not like to be stored, they prefer to run constantly. Here is a summary.

The Darn AB Cold Machine, Frig/Freezer

We have been dealing with an intermittent frig freezer for a year, and we needed to resolve the issue. FYI, this is a brand new install two years ago and it has never been right. Imagine filling your freezer and then overnight in the morning you discovered it nearly thawed out and then refroze. NOT acceptable in a house and not on a boat either. So, after 3 days in the sail locker working on this Adler Barbour Cold Machine, (AB) resoldering the connections on the circuit board, I found out this did not help. Then a super tech support guy at AB informed me that we did not need this circuit board and he has found that it is the #1 issue on these units. So, he told me how to simply rewire it and remove the board and toss it in the trash. We did exactly what he said, and it has never worked better!

The Adler Barbour Cold Machine is a simple little compressor with a fan and controller. The evaporator is in the freezer. The copper pipe holds the refrigerant.
To work in a sail locker, imagine working in a crawl space that is 4 feet tall and 5 feet long by 3 feet wide. You have to fit in and then do the work. I spent three days in here doing this job!
This is the solution! Remove the board and wire it directly to the compressor! Too easy.
The direct wiring to the compressor, way too easy.
This is the AB Cold machine circuit board that is NOT NEEDED. Remove this and wire direct. A new one of these costs $160+ USD.

Next, the Inverter/charger died

With the frig now fixed, I could resume the normal yacht service jobs on my list. But NO, Island Spirit said, hold on, this 2005 charger/inverter just blew up. WHAT? Yes, we lost the boat battery charger on Thanksgiving morning. The inverter still worked, but we had no way to charge the battery bank other than solar, wind, or the alternator. That is all OK until you are anchored out and want 120v power. We usually only use 12-volt power, again, remember, we live off a car battery, imagine that! Try it at home and see how long it will last. Ha Ha. We have no idea why it died, but we are guessing it was the power grid here in Puerto Rico. The power goes out daily and then surges and things bet blown up, so that is our best guess as it was working for a week, then died. So, we replaced it with a new Xantrex HF Freedom 1800 watt inverter. This install sent me into the sail locker for a full day but I installed it without electrocution. That is a good thing. Here are a few photos.

This is the new unit we bought, Xantrex HF Inverter/charger, $605.00 plus $50 shipping. Defender.com. Ordered on Friday, arrived Monday.
Our wonderful 2005 Xantrex Prosine 2.0 inverter/charger that died. Sadly I removed this and gave it away $$$$, the inverter still worked and it could send out for service.
The new install. This unit is longer and with the limited room to install, I had to run the wires in the front. In my old install, they ran behind the unit. These large red and black 1.0 sized cables run to the battery bank. This is high amperage power, and dangerous!
The control panels. I will mount the new inverter charger control next to the solar monitor.

Living on the Boat

Even though we are still in dock, as planned for one month, living on the boat is so interesting and different. We walk miles every day, we are eating less, drinking less, and feeling better. Thanksgiving was simple, a whole chicken and veggies roasted in an oven bag, with a batch of my Dad’s pan filling. A fine bottle of French wine was found in the locker, still good, which was amazing.  Canned pumpkin for a crustless pie was found at the fourth grocery store. We are happy, even with all the boat issues and repairs, we both love this adventure. We are anticipating sailing off to the Virgin Islands on Dec 16th all goes well. For now…..we have a new adventure….two weddings to fly off to, one in FLA and one in CALI. Here we go!

The sofas and the bed are also clear,. Do not look int the aft cabin…OMG
Happy on the boat we are….This was Thanksgiving Day 2021

Island Spirit in Dock, PDR


Thi$ is our dock at PDR for one month. Needed to $tore the boat $o we can fly off to two wedding$!!!!

Island Packet Yacht Owners in PDR

Our IP Fleet is Worldwide and here we are with IP380 WILLFUL, Adele and Herman and IP45 Gypsy Soul Todd and Kitti as we gather around IP465 No Wahalla boat watching for John and Lisa.

OK…off for an 11 day Wedding loop Coast to Coast from the Caribbean!

LIKE and FOLLOW us on FACEBOOK, it is public and no Facebook account is needed.




Please follow and like us:

6 Replies to “20 Days of Boat Work”

  1. Great discussion and photo’s of important repairs…you made it sound easy…I know it wasn’t…I once spent a lot of time in the starboard lazerette working on the AB compressor…Good for you.

  2. It is the overcome obstacles that make the successful outcomes all the more sweet.
    I have the identical Xantrex and have twice been unable to get shorepower to work at a marina only to find that the RESET switch needed to be reset.
    Think of you guys everyday and smile every morning when we pray for our “fleet”.

  3. Too much time spent cramped down in the sail locker is one of the reasons why I became a land Yacht’er. You either love it or hate it. I was not one of the former.

    It’s interesting that the circuit board was unnecessary. Makes you wonder why they put it on there in the first place. Another part to sell?

    Ruben Is right, you make it look easy.
    (Hi Reuben )

    You both look good!
    You’re back in your element. ⛵️

  4. Great post on challenging repairs! We also had to remove our circuit board, called a Merlin, on our Frigaboat (same compressor.) we have 2 of these in our spares, ouch! We are so happy you are back in the boat life, enjoy! Nina and Bob on Moondance Guatemala

  5. As always, love to hear about all of your adventures, whether they involve boat repairs or exotic destinations. Always something to learn from you. Have a wonderful trip. Enjoy the weddings! Loretta and Jim Elliott s/v Plan Sea

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *