The Sea Raven missed the start of the Master Mariner’s Race on May 26th this year, because the conversion to Electric Propulsion was not finished before the race.

Now, two months later it is almost complete. The 24hp, 96VAC, 3 phase brushless motor, powered by a 96VDC Battery Pack is all installed with a 12 amp 96volt charger which recharges it overnight from the grid. And the control system is all wired and almost ready to energize.

This conversion required removal of the entire exhaust system (mostly stainless steel) most of the engine auxiliaries, removing the reduction gear housing, and sawing off the reduction gear spindle,in order to fit the electric propulsion aboard before complete removal of the diesel. The 96VDC Battery Pack also required a reconfiguration of the ship’s existing 12VDC system. This 12VDC reconfiguration was finished today with all the original 12VDC systems (Two VHF’s, Radar, Galley lights and individual reading lights) all working again.

The conversion took over 200 hours of work, and could have been finished before the Master Mariner’s Race (we were even registered to race). But, unfortunately, the 70 year old Skipper has been doing this work mostly by himself. In fact, only 16 hours of that 200 were worked by any of the “crew”.

Over the winter and in the early Spring work days were duly advertised, but mostly no one showed up……..

One stalwart crew-member, Ryan, has helped more than three times, and even calls the Skipper to request workdays. And, Michael also called to set up a work day, But, the other “fair weather sailors” may just have better things to do, while waiting until the new propulsion system is finished. Well, its almost completed, but the non-participants missed a great learning opportunity on the cutting edge of technology and where sailing as we know it is now headed.

On the other hand, there is still lots of varnishing etc. which has been neglected while the skipper concentrated more of his time on the engine change out.

On the other hand, this has effectively demonstrated that even an old man, can convert a boat to electric propulsion in just 200 hours, including removals, re-design & new installation, even if working almost entirely by himself.