Wednesday, November 10, 2010

How Difficult Can It Be To Make Coffee?

I am not a coffee drinker. Oh sure, I like a cafe mocha once in a while, but rarely do I have a cup of java in a week. However, our crew has indicated that they like their coffee. So what can be so hard about that?

First of all, Trillium is a Swedish boat (with many of the manuals in Swedish) and has a dual - or is it quad - electrical systems: 24V, 12V, 220 DC and 110 AC. We operate under different systems in different conditions. When at the dock, life is easy: plug into the 220 DC with the European coffee pot and you have coffee!

If we turn on the inverter, I can use the 110 AC appliances. So I started with an electric kettle for heating water so I could have hot chocolate or tea, too. However, the electrical draw was too great and the inverter did not like it. So that went back to the house.

Next I purchased a 4-cup coffee maker like you see in hotels except it operated off the 12V system. The unit took up way too much storage space and wouldn't stay on the counter during the passage. As they say, "the juice wasn't worth the squeeze." So that went back to the store.

I was delighted when I remembered that the previous owner told me there was a 24V perculator onboard. I dug around and found it. I makes great coffee when we are at the dock, but that is the only time it works! So that is not the offshore solution for keeping a happy crew.

Now I have an old fashion stove top perculator. I could have started here first, but I don't want to crawl out of the cockpit to turn on the propane everytime someone wants coffee. If the coffee drinkers want coffee, they will have to do it!

Little did I know a simple cup of coffee could cause so much grief and waste so much time! At least the crew will get there java!

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