Tuesday 30 April 2013

Alternator Regulator Blues

Woke up this morning, couldn't believe my eyes
Woke up this morning, just couldn't believe my eyes
Domestic battery voltage was only 10.5

Thought, go cruising early, charging ought to be the fix
Said, go cruising now, man, charging gotta be the fix
But after an hour on the throttle, still only 10.6

Rang up my base-man, said it's the charger at fault
My clued-up base-man – he said it's the charger at fault
Without a replacement, this travelling's come to a halt

Could go on, but you'd probably rather I didn't
Said I could go on, but…

Point is, without domestic battery power, you ain't got much. No water from the tank, no light in the night, no functioning heating (the stove's broke as well), no means of charging the iPad. Just the ability to keep moving along the cut, 'cos the engine's still running.

Were we worried? Yup. To the point of turning around and going back to base to get it all fixed. Until my best beloved met another of her angels. Allan, on NB Pengalanty was moored up in front, and strongly recommended a local engineer. A phone call brought Philip in no time, and after confirmation of the diagnosis, he went off to get the needed bit – the regulator on the alternator. Some hours later, and many later than originally intended, we left Gailey for the second time, and made it through the narrows just north of Autherley junction before tying up for the night. Even better, Philip took away the stove door and it should be ready for us in the morning when we call in at his boatyard.

Debit it to experience, my adopted Uncle Paul used to say. Moral this time – when you're going on an extended cruise, do a little one first with no pressure, to make sure everything's working…

Meanwhile – here's to the man at base who could do diagnosis over the phone, to Allan who knew a man who could, and to Philip who knew what he was doing.

The hero

The villain


  1. Replies
    1. Oxley Marine, Mo. Just south of Autherley Junction. They're in Nicholson's. For something like this there's a call-out charge which includes an hour's labour. Not cheap (total bill including coming to Gailey, sourcing and fitting the replacement regulator on the alternator, coming back to Gailey, fitting, checking, etc, was £90 with the VAT) – but cheerful, helpful, resourceful and honest. Allan had said they don't rip you off. Proof of that was being charged just a fiver for the work to fix the stove door which Philip took away with him overnight.

  2. if you get in trouble on the Llangollen, Maestermaryn are very reasonable. Guy came out and replaced our throttle cable just at yard closing time, walked about a mile and back along the towpath to get to us and it cost us £80!