Sunday, 25 August 2013

Another Milestone

Pottering about sort of week until the week-end. Making up panels to cover the wiring and control panel, fitting the radio and doing some more work on the second door frame. Soon have that finished and I can try out that Wood Impreg Tom recommended.
That was until Saturday when Chris from Tops Tarpaulins came over and started a hectic day finishing off and fitting the new wheelhouse top. Even the weather was kind to us a bit of rain in the morning and fine from then on which was handy, being naked as it were.

What a smashing new frock she has, made to measure and all stainless steel fittings. Even has Velcro strips inside going round the cross bars to stop it flapping in windy weather. Beautiful job! The most important thing is of course that with the wheelhouse easy to drop again there is no reason (apart from my clutter) that we can’t go cruising – A shake down cruise is definitely on the cards during the next week or so.
Result! J
Went down with Karen this morning to see how Trudy-Ann had fared after all last nights rain. No bother at all, the wheelhouse was quite dry. No water had come through the top or in at the new door frame. Once the starboard door has been done I can really get cracking in the wheelhouse and engine bay. Spent the rest of the day touring chandlers getting the parts needed to re-plumb the Hurricane boiler. Still not got all the parts so may have to do some ordering on-line, but at least it will have an filter in the system along with plenty of other modifications that hopefully will stop it cutting out all the time.

Tuesday, 20 August 2013


Back to doing my own jobs over the last couple of days.
The first door frame has taken shape. All parts that will not see daylight again given a couple of coats of varnish, the ply across the top is just to help keep it square during fitting.
The main parts are cut and shaped for the second but were not finished off with the intention of waiting to see if the first fitted OK.
Well it did and it fits perfectly, perhaps too perfectly as the is just a 2mm gap all round, it may need some adjustment if the wood swells in damp weather.
All the rebates were cut from measurements so a nervous time during fitting but catches hinges and locks line up fine. First coat of varnish to seal the wood and plenty more to go on.
Now for the second doorframe, though that could be a problem because it is on the off side, might have to leave it until I can get a mooring on the left hand side.

Friday, 16 August 2013

Grantham Canal

Just carrying out a few mundane jobs on T-A again this week. The main interest of the week has been the new bottom lock gates at Woolsthorpe. I only went down on Wednesday and Thursday but some of the lads and lasses have been beavering away all week.
Wednesday morning the new gates arrived
but were held up by the lorry delivering the pump getting stuck on the track. Fortunately local farmer John was on hand to drag it out with his tractor and to keep things moving he brought the gates to site on his trailer. It’s a good job we have such handy neighbours.
Taking things seriously as usual.
Balance beams had already been removed the day before
Out with the old
And in with the new – which seemed an opportune moment for Lincolnshire IWA to present the Society a cheque for two thousand pounds towards the cost.
Another photo opportunity for our motley crew – oh this happy band.
By Wednesday evening the gates are in and looking good. A fine piece of woodwork by Hargreaves in ekki (No I hadn’t heard of it before either) but it is supposed to last twice as long as oak .
These are the top gates they fitted last year and are as tight as tight can be – not many gates on the system as dry as that.
Thursday morning and we find that we already have a lodger on the new gates
Despite the work going on he/she/it refused to budge so Dave working in the lock kept it damped down and the Hargreaves lads covered it with a spare hard hat to stop it drying out in the sun.
Gates not quite finished but looking good.
Ah well back to the varnishing. J  

Monday, 12 August 2013

Another Busy Week

But not a lot to show for it. The door frames are progressing though there is still a lot to do, not having seen the metalwork surrounding the door I’m having to measure everything and work out what the dimensions are from only what I can see so there has been a lot of measuring and double checking before any cuts are made. Only working on the detail of the starboard door so that if I get wrong at least both are not wrecked.
Otherwise the work on T-A has been more of the mundane – stocking up with gas , mounting the anchor, fitting the radio in the wheelhouse etcetera. On top of that the wiring and rerouting of pipes in the engine bay is finished.
The control cables have been rerouted under the engine between the bearers to enter the back of the cocoon so no more tripping hazards.
Starting to look a bit tidier that when we first got her
Friday morning was helping tidy up Woosthorpe depot on the Grantham Canal
and in the afternoon it was a very enjoyable time over at brother Pete’s for a barbeque.
On Saturday while I was ferreting down below Karen was grafting away topsides giving the old tub a well deserved scrub.
Though it is purely cosmetic because today Trudy-Ann has been booked into the paint shop next February / March to be shot blasted over the top sides and then given 9 (yes 9) coats of paint and be fully sign written. What Andy did on the stern  the first time was  fine but instead of getting the number and name painted on the bow we got a bloody great Ben Harp logo on the gas locker. The top coat of paint is lifting all over the place because the primer wasn’t properly cleaned down before application – so back to bare metal and start again.
The only trouble with spending all this time on the boat is that the dogs are definitely un-impressed. 
Anyway – if there is anybody out there wants a good show, the new lock gates at Woolsthorpe are being replaced on Wednesday and Thursday so there will be a chance to see flying lock gates and balance beams and hopefully there will be a boat through the Woolsthorpe flight for the first time in a good many years. With any luck I should have pictures by the week-end.

Sunday, 4 August 2013


Not a lot happening down on the boat this week hence the lack of posts.
Went down to reposition the exhaust outlet.
The U bend should of course be the other way up but when I attempted to loosen it the whole issue refused to budge. Managed to unscrew the skin fitting but even with a 24” stilson the only movement was the silencer mounts threatening to break free. Decided to leave it as it is and just re-lagged it. It’ll get chopped out when the time comes to replace the silencer.
Further up the  exhaust towards the engine the gear change cable was resting on the exhaust.
This has now been re routed under the engine between the bearers. While doing this it came to light that there is a similar port on the opposite side for the throttle cable which at the moment enters the engine cocoon from the side because it is too short, creating a tripping hazard. A longer cable ordered and this will also be routed between the engine bearers.
The rest of the time has been at home making up the new door frames.
The profile of the new step is somewhat more complex than the existing 130 x 35mm plank and will slot over the metalwork rather than rest on it.
The rest of the time has getting to grips with jobs around the garden, reroofing the shed and repairing the lean to, all exciting stuff