11 December 2022
Since it has been nearly two months since my last blog, I think it is time for an update. Yes, of course, we are still in Alanya Türkiye.
We have had irritating problems, of one kind or another, with our Volvo tachometer for years. With an upgrade in mind, I purchased and installed this innovative little tachometer called a Tiny Tach. I placed the supplied sensor on a fuel line, and it senses the fuel pump pulses and produces a very nice, accurate display. We have tested it, and are very happy with the result.
Several months ago, we decided to upgrade our E-bikes (that were just one year old) and bought much higher quality models, again made in Türkiye. These Bison E-bikes have the motor built into the pedal gears rather than the back wheel hub. The bike is lighter and smoother. We added baskets and Diane made custom Sunbrella seat covers. Although they do not have fenders, or even lights, they are a much higher quality product. We don’t ride at night anyway.
We are playing Mexican Train dominoes again. This time with Kevin and Sandy from SV NOCONA MOON. They are relative newcomers to the yachting and live-aboard life, and it is our pleasure to introduce them to this popular cruisers board game.
We experienced an unexpected and traumatic fault with our Magnum Inverter/Charger 2800W. This device is almost the only way of supplying 110VAC to our 110V appliances (vacuum cleaner, rice cooker, insta-pot, coffee bean grinder, small battery chargers etc). When the device was turned on, it produced a short, and burned the battery fuse, many times. This fault occurred after a big lightening storm, so there is that possibility also. After removing and testing it for several days, the fault was narrowed down to either a series of MOSFETs on a main circuit board, or the transformer. Neither of which conditions, we were told can be repaired in this country. We need parts. After seeing the cost and lengthy timelines (9-10 months) associated with getting replacement parts in from Magnum, I took the unprecedented decision to replace it, with an identical but new replacement. It was, after all, more than 12 years old. A new one is “on it’s way”. This is our source of 110V power, so we have had to make do with a 3000W transformer and a few extension cords, in the meantime.
One day, we took a day trip to Gazipaşa, to the East of Alanya. This is where the Alanya airport is, and there is also another marina there, although it is not yet complete and ready for use. We had lunch in a small restaurant with a beautiful park-like setting.
Although we rarely go out in the evening, we were recently introduced to a restaurant called “Lost in Alanya”, and it has turned out to be our favourite restaurant. We have since learned that the owner has opened another restaurant right next door called “Found in Alanya”.
We went for dinner with Kevin and Sandy (of SV NOCONA MOON) to the home of our friends Ahmet and Muse. It was absolutely wonderful to have real Turkish dinner in a local home with friends.
They surprised us with a Christmas tree in their living room.
One of the reasons we like this cruising life so much is the opportunity to meet people from all walks of life, from all countries – and sometimes see them again and again. To prove my point, a month ago, we went to a small social gathering of the marina live-aboard community and “re-met” Robin (of SV KATYDID), who we last saw in Cochin India in March 2019.
On 29 October, Türkiye celebrates their national day. We were delighted to be spectators to a cultural dance organized by the marina.
The spectators cheered, and some of the children even got in the mood. Lilly, a 3 year old member of the live-aboard community really enjoyed the dancing!
Finally, I’ll talk about our solar panels. We have 10 panels in place. I purchased and installed 4 flexible solar panels on our hard top (hard bimini) when in Malaysia 2018. When these 4 panels arrived, they were rolled in a tube, and one had stress cracks in it. I was always suspicious of the output of this panel, but could not tell with any certainty if the cracks impacted the performance – because all four panels were connected to the same controller.
Earlier this year, I replaced that single controller with two Victron MPPT controllers, and then it became obvious that one side was dramatically under-performing. So, I have been thinking about replacing that single panel for nearly a year. In the end, it was impossible to find an identical replacement (physical size, power output and performance), so I decided to replace two 200W panels with two 175W panels, giving the best fit and best performance. This photo shows the old and the new panels, side-by-side, and I’m happy to report that the new panels, even though they represent 350W of power compared to 400W of power – deliver 50% more power!
Christmas will be here soon, and we are excited because both Jonathan (who lives in Canada) and Joana (who lives in the Netherlands) are flying to Türkiye to visit us.