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Thread: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

  1. #41
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    50% Uk 50% on my boat
    Posts
    5,397

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    Eric and I are good friends and what you are seeing is a bit of fun .... not squabbling. Hence the many smilies.
    Safe Sailing
    Paul
    Blog: www.suliere.com

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Netherlands, Holland
    Posts
    608

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    I genuinely second that but will shut until I have some real facts to report.
    Sailors do it with the wind ....

  3. #43

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    p { margin-bottom: 0.21cm; } Dear All,
    As the (former) owner of 'Sea Minx' it is about time to put things right and lay unwarranted speculation to rest that surround this horrendous incident:-

    • I was ashore at Zululand Yacht Club, having dinner at the club, when I was informed that the boat was on fire. Despite concerted efforts from everybody available, the fire was out of control and the boat was destroyed. At the time the cause of the fire was a mystery.
    • Everything was lost including a substantial cash pile ready for cruising, a huge amount of personal memento's, valuable personal effects, documents such as passport etc etc. I was left standing in tee shirt and shorts.
    • This was the end of a long awaited dream; no more no less.
    • Yacht club members and yachties were brilliant in their kindness and every assistance. Special mention for Charles Fowler, club manager and his wife and Philippa and Robert on board SY 'Sanyati' who put me up for the night. Gideon Goudsmit, the boat builder, came next morning from Durban and went out of his way to help me get an emergency passport and put me up next night.
    • Within days of notifying the insurance company, a consultant forensic engineer was despatched from the UK to SA to investigate the cause of the fire having first interviewed me at length and taken a full statement. After intensive investigations his conclusion was that the fire was caused by a faulty battery trickle charger that I had left on to recharge the generator starter battery which was flat after an absence from the boat of eight weeks. I had bought the charger from an outlet in SA. It was a 'bog' standard charger like many of us have in our garage at home. The insurers have since paid out. I would, in particular, be grateful if “Therapy” would take note of this conclusion and, perhaps, think twice before making wild and unpleasant insinuations and think more about the personal dashed hopes and dreams that this disaster has caused the owner and his wife.
    • Yes, we did have substantial problems with the 'Green Motion' system during and after sea trials that year. And I may or may not come back to that in a different context, but I wish to make it perfectly clear here that this fire was not as a result of anything related to the 'Green Motion' system.



    And yes, we hope to sail again. We do not know yet how, where and when.
    Finally, 'Butterfly' thank you for your well informed and less speculative comments.


    Good day,


    Former Sea Minx owners

  4. #44

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    I hate being right all the time.

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    50% Uk 50% on my boat
    Posts
    5,397

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    I think everyones sympathy is with you on the destruction of your dream and thank you for putting the record straight. I am sure everyone on the forum hopes that you can soon start to live your dream again - it must have been a real shock after such a wait.

    I have left my boat for 5 months without the gen battery running down - it's an AGM. Did you have a lead acid battery because I am really surprised by a battery going flat in just 8 weeks?

    I am also sure that we would all like to have your first hand account of the green motion system - that account would be very valuable in getting to the truth. You have no axe to grind or boat to protect so I think anything you write has to be taken as gospel by all sides in the FastCat debate
    Once again, so sorry for your loss, it must have been a terrible experience. I once had my house burn down to the ground and lost my entire life's collection of everything so I do have some understanding of what it feels like.
    Safe Sailing
    Paul
    Blog: www.suliere.com

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    West Central Florida
    Posts
    970

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    Twindelight,

    I apologize for making you feel worse than you already did - if that is possible. It was not my intent to offend you by bashing your boat.

    I was however just the first bold enough to say what others thought also. There isn't really any one here with any respect for Gideon or his boats. No reflection on you buying into it. Just the way it is around here.

    So I was wrong about it being a FastCat part.

    I won't bother with stuff that Paul just asked, like about a dead battery in 8 weeks. That leads to pages.

    This stuff about Gideon and FastCats is one of the main reasons this forum even exists. He spouts so many facts that are indeed fantasies.

    And members feed on it voraciously. I actually feed on it less than most but you would have to read volumes to believe that and I don't suspect you will. No need really. I know I am not the ogre you think I am. I can live with myself just fine.

    I do hope you continue on and find another boat and start again. If insurance paid off you should be in pretty good shape financially.

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Pacific Ocean/N. American coast
    Posts
    432

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    I'm amazed the boat did not have a proper marine charging system. No secondary charger should ever be required(*). We have 3 banks of batteries. House and main starter banks are charged by a dual-bank charger. Generator starter is charged using a battery isolater off the house bank. This works nicely - and it's all marine grade stuff.

    No surprise the Green Motion did not live up to expectations. I'm a bit surprised it took so long for this to come to light, as it's clear the math doesn't work out for that system to be anywhere close to viable. Not having more than a couple boats in existence makes it hard - it requires actual boats being produced to gather data.

    (*) By required, I mean that as a base requirement. Having a portable, automotive charger for special, specific charging needs is just find in my book. In fact, I have one - used when I have a specific need to do so. Infrequently. But never as a primary/permanent charging source, and never unattended - it's not ignition protected, for one thing, and it's just not safe.

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    near Seattle
    Posts
    1,116

    Default Re: Green Motion Fastcat Goes Up in Flames

    I had a long debate with Gideon on CF. One point of contention was whether or not one should build boats out of epoxy. I stated that standard boat building epoxy, (room-temperature cured epoxy,) produced a very flammable product, and that you could get fire-resistant vinylester that was just as strong as standard boat-building epoxy, at a much lower price.

    If charging started a fire, my first question is, was there a good air venting system for box or compartment holding the battery? You should vent the area thoroughly, because charging lead acid batteries causes the production of (very flammable,) hydrogen gas. Such venting is required on commercial vessels in the US.
    Currently concentrating on http://earthnurture.com .

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