Friday, 27 January 2012

Droopy Lock and Wiring

Over to T-A on Wednesday for a short day to finish installing the conduit for the un-fused 12V supply to the trip switches and bilge pump and a general tidy up.
Thursday was another day out with the GCS scrub clearing round lock 14. This is the worst lock in the flight and somehow I think it will need a bit more than pointing up.
Hard work but still a good laugh with the motley crew
Ian wasn’t having much fun as a twisted fire starter. That fire just would not go.
On the boat again today and at long last we have power to the new trip panel and the bilge pump is wired so I can isolate the batteries on departure but the pump will still operate. Removed more of the panelling on the kitchen/wheelhouse bulkhead ready to replace the wiring.
Now what was the ruling about supporting cables?
Until I found this hole and fitted a grommet all the weight was resting on a cut metal edge. Another example of bung it in and cover it up. The new hole will take the conduit for the 240V supply.
New ducting being installed to carry the 12V but only as far as each gunwale where it will pick up the existing cable run(I hope). Not too worried about the spray foam as it is not an outside surface and the other side is getting a layer of soundproofing.
Progress seems to be slow at the moment but then I’m on a steep learning curve. Think it over, check the regs, measure it up, try and imagine the alternatives, how will it react on the next part of the build, check the regs again and think a bit more. Thirsty work this – time for a pint.

Monday, 23 January 2012

Up and Running Again

Had a few problems with the graphics on the PC and decided it was time to fix it with a new one, but I decided whilst it was out of commission I would reorganise the spare bedroom/office. That turned out to be a bit more of a job than planned and ended up rebuilding the computer desk, which those that have seen the old one will agree, it was a bit of overkill, but I had to cater for four monitors. Now anybody stopping over will have a good deal more elbow room than before.
Of the boat there is not much to tell, the Hurricane boiler has been removed and the steelwork where it had been repainted. It had been sitting on two steel bars which seemed to be sticking, so a quick tap with the mooring hammer and they were free.
That’s when I realised that they had been “welded”. How much bright metal can you see?
Other than that, it has just been little jobs like putting spacers in between the batteries to allow air flow and stop them moving about and as there are seven batteries in a 4/3 arrangement the last one is held in place by good heavy box which holds the hydrometer and distilled water.
Most of the time has been playing on the computer, it’s amazing how much time it takes to get things set up and running just how you like it.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Mystery Weekend

Had a break from Trudy at the weekend and went scrub clearing with the Grantham Canal Society around locks 12 and 15 in the Woolsthorpe flight. Saturday went really well, in fact so well that all the planned work was nearly completed in one day. This was in no small part due to help from some of the Waterways Recovery Group ( volunteers that turned out for us. No photo’s for Saturday as I never thought to take the camera. Pity really as before and after pictures would have told the tale. Sunday saw us split into three parties with one down to the locks to finish off and the other two clearing our Knipton feeder. Barbara from WRG providing tea and chocolate cake, magic.
In the afternoon Al (on the right in the photo) managed to get stuck in the mud, but with a bit of help he was dragged out minus boots. Ian the work party leader retrieved one welly but of the other there was no sign, A few of us fished about with rakes and Ian vowed to find the stray – but to no avail, there was absolutely no welly to be found, another of the mysterious tales that surround the canals of Britain. Al was forced to return to the cars mono-boot helped by Mary. It started to rain soon after so seemed like a good time to call a halt.
It is my theory that Al’s welly has been pushed too deep and is slowly sinking through the earth, so if any of our readers from down under hear of the strange appearance of a size 11 wellington boot for the right foot, please return to Al c/o Grantham Canal Society (details on the web site
A brilliant weekend and a feeling of satisfaction for a job well done – who says the over fifties don’t know how to have fun.
Happy days

Friday, 6 January 2012

Wiring and Heating

Spent the last couple of days down at T-A, cutting through steelwork to run the ducting for the un-fused 12v and 240V supplies. There will be conduit from the batteries for the supply to the trip switch panel and a further lead to the control desk for the supply to the fused bilge pump switch. This should make things comply with ISO 10133 setion 8.1
Quite a bit of the work will take place below in the engine ‘ole so I decided it was time to move the Hurricane heater. To make sure the heater was being moved to a suitable location I have studied the Hurricane manual downloaded from the internet.
It states that the unit should be installed with:-
Access to front. top and left hand side for maintenance.
Secured by four bolts.
Fitted with an expansion tank and header tank.
Exhaust to be supported every 3’ minimum.
Exhaust and air pipes should include a goose neck to prevent water ingress.
Exhaust must have 3” clearance from all surfaces.
Fuel supply should be by flow and return pipes.
Fuel line should be fitted with in line filter.
Water pump must be mounted lower than the boiler.
“The engineer has been out and says the installation is perfect, there is no reason why it should be giving problems” – Yeah right!
Not to mention that the broken inlet manifold listed during the build was never replaced just bodged with black tape.
Once the wiring has been sorted down there it will be time for another proper job.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Recovering from Christmas

Well, all the Christmas gatherings are over and done with, it’s been a good year but if I see any more turkey in the next week or two I shall scream. On the last day of 2011 a group of old farts including myself went to see Leicester signalling Centre. We had been there at the start in 1986 when this took over from the old manual signalboxes between Sharnbrook and Kegworth on the midland main line. As of midnight Leicester was to be superseded by the new signalling centre in Derby which will eventually control all movements in the east midlands.
Meanwhile back in the shed work is progressing slowly. The framework for the control panel has been made and the off side has been adapted to take a radio with a slot for an i-pod.
The plan being that the radio can be operated from the main cabin or the wheelhouse and by use of the front/rear balance it can be used in either the boat or wheelhouse or both, depending on  who wants to do what. The round hole will take the morse control. This has now been installed on T-A
The control panel looks as though it may be a bit crowded with the extra instrumentation so I have drawn all the parts to scale in Microsoft Visio so it can be rearranged and shuffled about before actually cutting wood.

Lots of options but it makes life so much easier and I’m all for that.
Happy new year all.