Yacht Aditi

NMEA with Chips!

Activating a USB port to enable NMEA data inputs within an older (pre-USB plug-and-play era) was proving a source of frustration. Activating the port via a direct USB feed taken from a protected circuit driven my an Actisense Multiplexer was the intended solution but Open CPN was unable to recognise the USB port on a laptop. Although there are a number of costly solutions on the market but after fitting (the brilliant) multiplexer adding another unit in the chain seemed folly.

Enter the FDIC chip which fools a USB port into recognising RS232 inputs, which are direct NMEA feeds taken from the NMEA bus, converting serial com port data inputs to USB port data.












The introduction of the FDIC chip immediately enabled the NMEA instrument plug-in displays within Open CPN (which itself has been recently upgraded to include more dynamic port settings). The virtual instruments and related functions are active.


Chinese Lanterns

The stern light bracket is ready to fit after a bit of grinding and polishing. The picture also shows a Chinese copy of an Aqua Signal 40 Series light, a 40% cost reduction. The lantern is identical in almost all respects. The bayonet fitting for the lamp in the Chinese housing is an upgrade but the cable seal is a poor design so is being modified by re-cutting a thread and fabricating a brass collar. A plug has been turned out of nylon and is ready to weld into the base. The brass rod will be drilled, turned and threaded.


On closer inspection the unbranded copy light does not have a heat sheild above the lamp so can only run LED bulbs. After some brief thought we purchased an Aqua Signal replacement in preference as we are running all incandescent bulbs at deck level to remain type compliant..

Back to Work

Welding a 316 steel bracket to raise the stern light from deck level which otherwise reflects brightly off the pushpit and liferaft bracket – if the Oriana were dead astern in the pitch black you would hear it long before seeing any navigation lights. Once raised well above deck level we can return to peering into the mystic depths of darkness as well as retain our night vision.


Onboard Travel Agency Opens


We have decided that our agency is an inverse one; our brochures are mostly about what to avoid where and when. The destination footprint often reads very rough, dangerous, not to be attempted at night…..


The posts have slowed recently as packing the house has moved up the priority list especially with daytime temps of 3 degs C. Boatwise the watermaker is the main show at this time.

The first issue has been to decide whether or not to run with pre-existing holes in the hull or to drill more. And if drilling one or two more then where? What would the pipe routes be and what fittings would be required?

Eventually it was decided that we would use the pre-existing through hull fittings that had effectively been made redundant. That gave rise to the need to find a match for the existing fittings in order to plumb into them. Much blind searching failed to find a match but some close up photography of various parts revealed the possible brand names. Could they be easily matched 25 years on?

Finding Pipestock.com was a lucky success and 25 years on the same brands are all available.



PVC Plumbing valves and reducers along with hose tails of differing sizes




An original valve T’eed to also feed the watermaker. The other branch is not used and although now fitted with a stopcock will be re-fitted with a ball valve.



The watermaker pump is being lined up within an aft section of the hull. More cabin furniture has been taken apart to run hoses and control cables from the rear cabin to the transom area. We are a some way from being done as there is a fresh water supply to feed to the watermaker pump filters for flushing, hoses for brine output to find as the sizes are unusual, and the desalinated water feed to take back to the water tank. We will be fitting a remote control panel. Electrics boil down to the need to fit a 24V/25A circuit breaker somewhere sensible.



DSC00788.JPGThe brine output from the watermaker is now routed to the through hull fitting and the ball valve is in place. Looking at it now perhaps it would have been better to stay with a large bore valve rather than sleeve down to a small valve at the elbow purely from an apparent strength perspective. But then the clearance between the two valves would have been minimal if in fact they could fit side by side. Now to rebuild the wardrobe.