Beat The Heat Tips

  • July 21, 2011 8:02 AM
    Message # 660197
    Today seems like the perfect time to publish a list of tips on how to beat the heat while cruising. Below are some things we've been doing on Tarwathie recently while cruising The Erie Canal in New York.

    • While under way, the helmsman stays under protection of the bimini all the time.   Pity the prior owners of Tarwathie, they had no bimini.

    • The boat has considerable thermal inertia.  Even on the hottest day it stays cooler in  the cabin until about 1500.  But then it remains too hot until 2300 at night.  By the way, thank God it does cool at night around here.  We have no trouble sleeping.

    • I tried wetting down the decks and hull hoping to cool down the walls.  It has no noticeable effect.  I think we would need continue the wet down for an hour or more to make a difference.

    • We use muffin fans in the cabin and point them directly at our heads.

    • Drink lots of fluids

    • Yesterday I bought a package of Popsicle twin pops.  Eating half a pop every hour or so during the day is a great pick up.

    • (See the picture)  We have a battery operated gadget that lets you spray water mist on yourself as you hold a fan.  Directed at the head and the back of the neck it works well.

    • I have a floppy hat with a wide brim to keep the sun off.  On the hot days I put the hat on the end of a boat hook and dunk it in the river.  Then I put it on my head soaking wet.  That feels really good.

    • Seek shelter when possible.   Lounging in an air conditioned library, or a store is a great strategy.   Failing that, go for the shade of a grove of trees near the water.

    • Avoid the hottest hours.  Travel from 0600-1200 is more comfortable than 1200-1800.  We can also take evening walks and sit outside to vacate the boat after dinner until bed time.   The only trouble with that is the mosquito hour around sunset.   We've been using lots of bug spray this week.

    • Go jump in the lake (or the river).   Where the water is clean, cool, and free of nasty creatures, taking a plunge is what I call "instant attitude adjustment"    The Chesapeake Bay is full of sea nettles, the man-made sections of the Erie Canal have dirty water, the Mohawk and Hudson rivers are OK, Lake Champlain waters are perfect for swimming.

    • Most important, seek the proper latitude. Migrate

      With her heavy displacement, much of the hull in a W32 is under water.  Ambient water temperature has a major influence on comfort in the cabin. Below are some rough numbers for the USA East Coast. Temperatures in degrees F
     Latitude  Place  Summer water temp  Winter water temp
    47  Halifax, Nova Scotia  50  33
    45  Penobscot Bay, Maine  60  36
    45  Lake Champlain, Vermont  70  frozen
    42  Erie Canal, New York  80  frozen
    38 Chesapeake Bay, Maryland  80  35
    25  Florida  90  75
  • February 04, 2013 6:14 PM
    Reply # 1198930 on 660197
    Also on the 32 the fuel tank(s) are a large heat sink. If you run the engine for a few hours the tank(s) heats up and then radiates for the next several hours. We often opened the aft hatch to let air circulate and the heat escape.

    And when at anchor we had full boat awnings. NOT old sail cloth. I used an Infra temp sensor and found that there is a 20 degree difference between the temp on deck outside the shade of the awning and the area under the awning. We use a fabric called Regatta which is very like Stamoid but a little lighter and consequently has a little less life.  The main awning on our 42 living in the tropics is now on it's 5th year and the forward awning made it into 4 years.

  • February 05, 2013 9:03 AM
    Reply # 1199451 on 660197
    Deleted user
    Speaking of running the engine and heating up the boat, I have installed a Nicro marine solar vent aft of the lazarette hatch and it seems to pull the heated air out as we run the engine well.  I have it set up to exhaust.

    When the boat is layed up, I also put a solar vent in one of the anchor deck plates and it keeps the boat fresh, with that one blowing in.

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