2nd February 2011
Rosslyn Bay Marina
We spent most of today watching the TV coverage of TC Tasi. Initially Cairns was in the path of the storm but as the day wore on the cyclone turned slightly south and would cross between Innisfail and Cardwell, about 100 kilometres south. Bad news for those communities but the population density isn't so great. so good news for Cairns. We were constantly on the phone and email to friends and heard that the Hammonds had been evacuated form Yorkeys Knob. We spoke with friends who owned boats in the marina and they were very pessimistic about their chances. Warwick from Shaka Zulu had his boat in the river at Port Douglas and his email updates were paricularly distressing.
We collected the replacement alternator and came back to Dreamagic. We also picked up the current copy of Cruising Helmsman and they had published a two page article of mine, complete with a picture of me sitting at Kamatal! Unfortunately they had included someone elses photo in the authors bio but hey! It can't be all perfect.
Richard Winter, and old friend of mine living in Rockhampton joined us after lunch and we put the alternator in, tested it, found it didn't work before retiring to the Yacht Club to ponder the problem and drink some wine.
Richard called some friends of his and we think we have the problem sorted. The field wire is probably on the wrong terminal. A simple fix so more wine, dinner and back to the boat. We had invited him to stay on the Dreamagic so driving, and responsible alcohol intake were not an issue.
Once back at the boat Richard, who wanetd to get away early on the following day suggested that we sort the alernator out there and then. Attaching the positive to the terminal he accidentally shorted it to the earthed body of the alternator. The wire immediately became too hot to undo, and the battery bank caught fire! Fortunately we had a fire blanket handy so we killed the batteries and put the fire out. However the kill switch may have melted as we could not turn the power back on and had to go to bed with no 12 volt electrics. Not the most successful day.