Thursday, 22 December 2011

Getting Sorted

No work on Trudy-Ann this past week. Over the last few months I have been getting increasingly irritated by having to shuffle round in a cluttered workshop and more often worked outside if the item was of any size, so I decided to bite the bullet. Well one week and several trips down the tip later things are starting to take shape. The table saw has been moved towards the back corner but it means that I can only cut 8x4 sheets of ply cross ways without moving the set up back to the middle. It is on wheels but it means lifting all the support legs so can be a bit of a pain. Now work can be carried out whatever the weather is like or what time of day it is.
I decided to treat myself to this for Christmas and Karen added a full set of blades from 6mm to 25mm and the wheel set.
It’s a bit of a beast and can cope with timber up to 12” thick but will also cut 8x4 ply lengthways yet the footprint is hardly more than the dinky little bandsaw I had before. Should be useful to turn blocks into boards and shaped items, can’t wait to try it out.
Cheer up the sun has just set on the shortest day of the year, now we can start looking forward to spring and to cheer us all up further, the world will have ended by this time next year so they say. Merry Christmas everyone.  

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Pottering About

Stopped blogging for a while due to getting strange comments – usually with a link to another site flogging Viagra. I have reset some security protocols on older posts which will hopefully stop this nuisance.
Despite the weather deterioration I’m still managing to get a few jobs done between work parties and Christmas parties. Been down to the boat three or four times doing a few jobs to prepare for the new control panel which is still under construction. The interior of the boat now seems to be remaining dry despite the weather, the bottom plate under the sink and in the engine bay are still dry which I am taking to be a good sign.
Popped into Nottingham and got a 6ft of 1.5 by 6 inch ash board which I am converting into mouldings to edge the control panel and wheelhouse lining.
The existing panelling which has not been rotted by water ingress is blackening around the fixing screws as they rust, using stainless steel and brass should prevent this in future. On the visit to T-A today I measured up the water pipes into the Hurricane heater in the hopes that I can turn down some mahogany to make bungs to seal the pipes during removal to try and save the coolant in the heating system when the boiler is removed prior to repositioning. Not really surprised to find that it is only held in place by the earth strap. Disconnected the engine control cable and am a bit concerned to find two wires cut and taped back at the multi pin connector but will be unable to find if anything is amiss until I fit the new engine sensors and deluxe panel. New cross member fitted in front of the control panel to stop the narrower deck board dropping into the engine bay this is to accommodate the control desk being moved back for the new wheel and trip panel – I know – I keep adding jobs but at the end of the day the plan is to end up with something that I am happy with. In my own defence, many of the jobs added are in response to problems found.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Slowing Down for Winter

Party in Bedford last Saturday and had a great time, shame we had to leave early because of the distance. How many times have you been 49 Les???.
Still working on the control panel framework but with the weather getting colder it is taking glue and paint longer to go off, but I refuse just to assemble with screws and leave the internal woodwork with no protection at all. As it is getting made each section is getting two coats of bulkhead paint so in all as I can only paint one side at a time, with the longer drying time, it is taking four days to paint each item. Never the less I was down at T-A last Sunday trying the parts for size and bolting the brackets to the steelwork, cheating a bit as I was using some nifty self drilling/tapping bolts. Thanks to the new lighting I was at least able to get this job finished.
In the mean time I’ve not been totally idle as I’ve had a couple of days with the GCS. Firstly to return the kit to depot after the failed attempt to replace the top gates at lock 18 and scrub clearance on the towpath side of locks 13 to 15, this really is a beautiful part of the country and it has been great enjoying the outdoor life again after so many years of being stuck at a desk. Christmas shopping tomorrow but plan to drop in on the lads who will be beavering away to drop of some bits that have been in for sharpening. I’ll try and remember the camera – may even use it as an excuse to walk the dogs down there.