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Alice Gale is now a “Happy Ohm”

After several years of motoring out to the sailing area of Newport Beach I have desired an electric conversion to allow smoother and quieter operation, provide a substitute power source for relaxed cruising with friends, and allow access to the canal homes in our area.   An electric conversion would allow us to significantly expand my local area of exploration. My gas 4.0 motor was not particularly happy at super slow cruising speeds and liked to run at quarter throttle which for the Alice Gale was approaching hull speed.    I desired an electric motor that would have zero to max power available with the twist of a knob or throttle.

I have researched multiple sources for electric propulsion and found a direct solution for my use without significant modification to Alice Gale.   Elco Motor Yachts started distributing 9.9 hp motors that have the exact footprint of my existing 4.0 hp Mercury motor.

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As a reminder to my followers,  my number one usage of Alice Gale is harbor cruising under sail with friends while enjoying the views and a glass of wine with snacks.  Boat speed was never an issue, so a fast responding quick moving sailboat is the opposite of my desires.    Under perfect conditions I wanted a responsive boat that would move comfortable under a range of wind conditions and be stable enough not to concern the captain or passengers of ‘dangerous capsize conditions’.     Alice Gale has always been a responsive and easily driven boat under light to moderate wind conditions.  Under erratic and higher wind conditions greater then 10 knots required more sailing focus from me or reefing to de-power  the boat for comfort sailing.

With this in mind I have been comfortable trading boat acceleration for more stability.

The following photo’s explain my changes to Alice Gale in making her a truly multipurpose boat.  She is rigged for both sail and as an electric launch.

My design updates included adding 550 lbs of lead acid AGM batteries to the center line of the boat.

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This modification has done an excellent job in lowering the waterline on the bow of the boat and raising slightly the stern to match the designed waterline originally intended for the Ebihen 15.  Alice Gale was alway a bit tail heavy and looks better with several passengers sitting up front.  With the added battery weight clearly centered on the boats center the boat sits very comfortable in the water, though it now may be an inch or two overall lower then design.   It has made the boat several inches longer at the waterline, so in reality I have a slight increase in maximum hull speed.    As the owner of the boat I am extremely happy with the changes.

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Alice Gale sitting nicely at the dock with electric propulsion

llSo starting from the beginning of my modification.  After determining by measurement and balance I selected an installation of the batteries directly below my forward seats on  the center balance point of Alice Gale.   I designed and made brackets and a battery shelf to both secure and hide the batteries from normal view.    All of my parts where first constructed with thin ply patterns.   I experimented a number of times to come up with the final shape, shelf height and overall look.

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Brackets cut and notched for cross members

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Removing finish for Epoxy attachment

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Bracket and cross members installed

With the weight of each battery at 61 lbs I made sure I had sufficient cross bracing to support the weight of four batteries.  Each support member is epoxy attached to the adjoining frame.

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Shelf

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Battery support

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More prep

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Adding a door rail

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Door rail detail

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Door rail detail

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Door rail installed

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Prep and paint the shelf brackets

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Shelf installed

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Painted to match hull color

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Dry fitted door panel

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Identified Left/Right side for perfect fit

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First battery install

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Cutouts for Gauges

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Filled old master Switch location

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Master Switch, Amp Meter, and Charger outlet

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Finished look

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Finished look

The tight areas under the seat shelf has the added benefit of allowing stowage of fenders and life jackets without the clutter of being underfoot or hidden away in cabinets.

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Installed charger

I installed NOCO Genius dual 10 amp chargers for each 12v bank.  I hooked up across each 6 volt pair to individually charge two batteries independently from the other batteries in the bank.   Each side of Alice Gale has a similar row of batteries (4 – 210 amp AGM) and a 2 bank 12 volt charger as shown.

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Shunt and bilge pump wiring

I used my previously wired bilge pump and required to a 12V bank.  The lower shunt provides details to the running amp meter from Victron Energy.

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Ready for our first cruise

 

 

 
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Posted by on June 30, 2016 in Building Stage

 

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A two day sail in San Diego Harbor.

Gail and I trailered “Alice Gale” down to San Diego and spent two days sailing out of Shelter Island.

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2014 in Sailing the Ebihen 15

 

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Sailing Newport Beach

I had a nice sail in Newport Beach on a quite weekday.

 
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Posted by on March 4, 2012 in Sailing the Ebihen 15

 

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Bowsprit and Bitt

I am bouncing back and forth between various building tasks now that I am nearing the last few dozen steps.   The bowsprit has been shaped to approximate dimensions and the Bitt has been installed in the boat prior to priming.   A few extra photo’s showing how I cut the hole for the bowsprit.  Not complicated but I had the photo’s.     I also like to occasionally put parts together to see how the boat will look before needed to.   In this first photo I have the floorboards and partially completed seats showing in the background.   I remove these and return to safe storage as I progress towards the interior prep and painting.

More shaping needed, but progress has been made.

Bitt ready for installation

Marking the location for the Bowsprit bitt

Drilling the pilot hole for the jigsaw

Making the cut, .. black spots are graphite paint spills, not rot :<)

Bitt installed, Bowsprit in approximate location.

 
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Posted by on September 10, 2010 in Building Stage

 

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Forward Locker

This week I worked on a number of detail items, starting with the Locker Hatch Door and slides.

Laying out door tracks and screw hole alignment

Mounting locker door slide rails

Slide rails will be left bright, and the door hatch will be painted.

 
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Posted by on September 9, 2010 in Building Stage

 

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Decking Details

I have completed the outboard motor well, all enclosed volumes filled with foam.

Sealing the aft floatation compartments

The bow decking has been sealed over the foam fill and the mast thwart has been cut and installed.    I also started to build the Bowspirt using scarfed 2/4 douglas fir.

Clamping oak mast thwart to fore deck

Bowsprit bitt, bowsprit, and fore deck.

Building up the bowsprit from douglas fir 2/4

I played around with the previously completed floorboards to get an idea how the boat may look when completed.     You can also see the completed aft decking and the initial fitting of the side seats.

Jumping ahead to see what she may look like finished.

As always, more sanding!

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2010 in Building Stage

 

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Working the Planks, False Keel, and shaping the false Stem

Another month has gone by and I have made some progress on the boat.    After installation of the garboards I laminated the aft end where the outboard motor access hole will be cut out.  Not shown is a four inch laminate along the garboard/keel joint.  This was later epoxy filled and faired for a smooth finish.

Later the outboard motor hole will be cut out in this area

Tracing paper after detailed measurements for size and placement

The 3rd strake was added.

Primer added to first two boards and now fitting the 3rd.

The garboard stake has been laminated with a four inch cloth strip and faired to a smooth finish.    Several coats of primer have been applied.

I also have finished out several internal spaces that will be inaccessable once I install another strake board. Using my finish paint for the first time, it reminds me of my childhood days using Revel model enamel.

This interior space will be enclosed after the next board, so finish work was completed

The false keel was fitted prior to the lamination and addition of the 3rd strake board.

Detail of the area to be faired on the centerboard trunk

Counter sunk and attached with stainless steel screws

I made this up to sand the interior of the centerboard trunk

The false stem was also constructed and fitted for later attachment after completion of all boards.

I made the stem out of oak pieces

Epoxy mixed with laminating thickener used, plastic to prevent sticking to bench

Back and forth between the boat and bench during the shaping process

Checking for fit

After the 3rd board was attached and many hours of sanding another coat of primer, I have started work on the brass keel band.

Raw stock, drilled for oval stainless steel screws

Drilled and ready for final alignment and keel fairing to the band.

 
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Posted by on April 2, 2010 in Building Stage

 

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