Start of fire from old Grundig TV in saloon


Stephen Nicholson
 

Hello Amelians,
Feels like we nearly lost our SM to a fire yesterday, due to a short circuit in an old style Grundig TV which was in a starboard compartment in the saloon. This TV, which probably is the same age as the boat, 92-93, was plugged into the mains and left on standby. We are on shorepower in a marina, at present. The story as follows:  been out for the evening and returned at 9pm. Noticed a smell of burning when opening the main hatch, and when inside the saloon there was a definite ‘fog’. Switched off all the buttons on the Mains control panel, grabbed a fire extinguisher and started to look for a culprit. Heard a crackling noise behind the leather cover which conceals the TV, pulled the cover back to be confronted by lots of billowing smoke (presumably due to more oxygen) but no flames, fortunately. I didn’t fancy using the fire extinguisher, which was a messy Dry Powder type, and i hoped that by cutting the power supply that that would be enough for everything to settle down, which it gradually did.
It seems that we were Extremely Lucky that we returned when we did and were able to deal with it. We may not have been so fortunate had we returned a hour later to a full blown fire.
My lessons learnt are as follows:-
1. Don’t ever leave any equipment on standby, especially if it is elderly.
2. Install smoke detectors, possibly 2. This scenario could easily have occurred at night!
I would be grateful for any further thoughts.
Steve & Gill Nicholson 
SM89 Antigua II


 

Steve,

I believe that all of us are thankful that you caught this early.

Caution.JPG
I want to use this opportunity to tell all owners with this Optional TV Package that I have seen far too many owners wire things to the original installation. The original installation on many Amels prior to the 54 was a source for 230v Inverter power, 24v power, and 12v power. And this is further complicated by the fact that almost all SM owners are at the least the 2nd owner. Regrettably, the wiring changes made by the previous owner(s) are almost never passed on to future owners and few current owners have any idea how it was originally wired. This situation is very common with the Optional TV Package and with the various 24-12v converters at the Nav Station.

Bill

CW Bill Rouse Amel Owners Yacht School
720 Winnie, Galveston Island, Texas 77550 
   

On Thu, Jun 23, 2022 at 10:21 AM Stephen Nicholson <stevenich@...> wrote:
Hello Amelians,
Feels like we nearly lost our SM to a fire yesterday, due to a short circuit in an old style Grundig TV which was in a starboard compartment in the saloon. This TV, which probably is the same age as the boat, 92-93, was plugged into the mains and left on standby. We are on shorepower in a marina, at present. The story as follows:  been out for the evening and returned at 9pm. Noticed a smell of burning when opening the main hatch, and when inside the saloon there was a definite ‘fog’. Switched off all the buttons on the Mains control panel, grabbed a fire extinguisher and started to look for a culprit. Heard a crackling noise behind the leather cover which conceals the TV, pulled the cover back to be confronted by lots of billowing smoke (presumably due to more oxygen) but no flames, fortunately. I didn’t fancy using the fire extinguisher, which was a messy Dry Powder type, and i hoped that by cutting the power supply that that would be enough for everything to settle down, which it gradually did.
It seems that we were Extremely Lucky that we returned when we did and were able to deal with it. We may not have been so fortunate had we returned a hour later to a full blown fire.
My lessons learnt are as follows:-
1. Don’t ever leave any equipment on standby, especially if it is elderly.
2. Install smoke detectors, possibly 2. This scenario could easily have occurred at night!
I would be grateful for any further thoughts.
Steve & Gill Nicholson 
SM89 Antigua II


Alan Leslie
 

IMHO DON'T leave ANYTHING on standby......not only could it cause a problem like this, but anything left on when you are not using it consumes electricity.....
As for all that TV carry on, I have to agree with Bill. That Grundig TV was a disaster!
Our previous owner was a TV fanatic...the wiring was unbelievable....antenna amplifiers, extra sockets, extra antenna cables..I don't watch TV...... I pulled it all out...except for the inverter under the nav table and its wiring to the saloon...which is useful for other things
We now have a 24V Uniden flat screen with an inbuilt DVD tray, just for watching DVDs ....no antenna...no crazy wiring....and i pull the 24V plug out when not using it...which is 98% of the time.
Cheers
Alan
Elyse SM437


Gary Wells
 

I can share that I, like you, had a small electrical "incident" due to my own negligence (handing a hot wire I thought was cold) and I steuggled with whether or not to pull the handle on a dry powder extinguisher.  I'm glad I didn't because it would likely have damaged the SSB and the 24v-12v converters ... but ... it was iffy and worrisome and a smoke-filled saloon is just not fun.

I said a that to say that I can recommend a type of fire extinguisher that generates retardant electrostatically.  I got those in Malta as they aren't readily available in the U.S. and the model number is JE-50.

Understanding that these aren't USCG approved, they are still very viable additional kit. No residue to speak of and equal in extinguishing capability to the ABCs. 

So glad you caught this before it became unmanageable and/or deadly. 

Gary W.
Former SM 209, Adagio

 


Denis Foster
 

Hello,

very lucky indeed.

on the subject of smoke detectors: we are considering installation of two or three Nest smoke and CO detectors (2nd generation)

They seem to be linked together (by BT?) so all will alert if one triggers. The work on Li AAA batteries.

Has someone used them on board? (We have them at home)

My idea is to put them in Galley, Master cabin and in Engine room).

Thanks for your opinion on these land designed units inside our boats.

Regards

Denis