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      Recently we had an electrician on board our 2006 B46 because 1) our calorifier element had blown for some reason and 2) there is a continual crackling sound from outside the boat which seems like an electrical leak even when shore power is not connected.
      His comments were that the calorifier element blew because the terminals got wet and shorted and that there is nothing to worry about re the crackling sound from outside.
      However, he did comment that there is NO EARTHING between all the metal skin fittings which will inevitably result in degrading of the fittings and everything connected to them through electrolysis. He now proposes fitting an EARTH PLATE and connecting the skin fittings to it along with the earth from the Inverter.
      I’m curious to hear if any other Bavaria owners have fitted an Earth Plate and also if anyone has noticed this continual crackling sound from outside. The sound seems to be more noticeable in the forward cabin.
      The electrician also said that they had to do a similar job on another Bavaria last year.


        I had a faint crackling sound for about 3 weeks – eventually I tracked it down to the battery master switch for the domestic battery – this switch is under the chart table. At first wiggling the switch stopped the noise – but the switch progressively failed – often causing sudden voltage drops that caused instruments to reset and the fridge not to work. Eliminating the switch has resolved the problem for me.


          Regarding earthing all the skin fittings – I am under the impression that this is not necessary. For electrolysis to be an issue (as suggested in the post above) there must be a circuit from the skin fitting, through the sea water and back to the skin fitting (inside the boat – via the prop, keel etc). Provided the skin fittings are completely electrically isolated from everything else in the boat, there should be no problem. You could even create a problem if you connect them together and the outside anode (earth plate?) becomes disconnected.

          I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong!


            I agree with Roger. Provided the through-hull fittings are isolated electrically from everything else then things should be fine. I learned the hard way with my first boat, a Hurley 22. Thinking I was doing the right thing I comnnected the seacocks together with an “earth” wire; not a good idea as the fittings all suffered severely from electrolysis.

            Ian Culley
            B32 ‘Another Fantasy’


              Thank you for your comments. I’m no expert in the area and was anxious to hear other owners opinions. This and the added quotation for Eur855 by the yard is making me think twice about doing the work. My concern about the crackling sound started me on the subject in the first place.

              One has to note that if Bavaria didn’t feel it necessary to bond the skin fittings then it is the designers opinion also that it is better to keep them isolated.

              Any suggestions as to how I earth the Inverter?

              Nick Walsh
              B46 “Silverado”


                The crackling sound you are hearing is normal on all boats. It sounds like water fizzing under the hull. I had a client a few years ago who upon hearing these sounds was convinced he had water leaking into the boat. He searched all night taking all cushions, floor boards etc and found nothing. I suspect that the Crackling sound you are hearing is the same and is from air bubbles in the water braking under the hull.

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