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NB Alnwick

Member Since 28 Oct 2006
Offline Last Active 16 Aug 2015 10:29 AM

Topics I've Started

Grumpy Boaters

06 August 2015 - 03:00 PM

While negotiating the 'S' bends beside the site of the former Napton Brickworks on the Oxford Canal I noticed that the steerer of an approaching boat was waving his hands frantically. As he got nearer I could hear him saying 'Get over - your supposed to be at the edge" - now, although I was proceeding very slowly, there was no way that I could have navigated closer to either edge of the canal because the channel is quite badly silted up in this area. He had plenty of room to pass and at no time was his boat closer than a yard or so from me - even as he passed without slowing down. As he went by he shouted something like "some people want all of the canal" which probably sums up his own attitude. A bit of a contrast from the friendly wave that I usually get from approaching/passing boaters. Perhaps it is the time of year when grumpy boaters are in season.

The Passport Office - "You said, We did"

13 February 2015 - 02:38 PM

It is not often that we are able to praise a Government Office but after much public criticism, The Passport Office appears to have improved its act. Jane and I applied for our new passports on 6 February 2015 - we had been led to believe that the process could take upwards of three weeks but they were delivered to us by courier this morning - just seven days including the day that we posted the forms and today when the new passports were delivered!


The Passport Office has certainly responded to its critics in its "You said, We did" campaign.


I am also quite impressed with the quality of the new passports - the previously blank pages now include images of the British landscape - including, on pages 16 and 17 a canal scene with a typical arched bridge, a moored narrow boat and a lock.

A welcome return!

22 November 2014 - 10:51 AM

After a brief trip in early August, I removed some of our K3's coolant distribution pipework because there were annoying pin-hole leaks in some of the soldered joints. The repair work was expertly undertaken by Richard of Primrose Engineering (RLWP in Canalworld) and after collecting all the bits and making new gaskets I re-assembled the lot yesterday. For the first time I used 'Heldite' gasket jointing compound and I am extremely pleased with the result. My previous choice 'Hermatite Red' has been discontinued but 'Heldite' is highly recommended by the steam and stationary engine fraternity.


Just one flanged joint failed to seal initially and I found that this was because the 3/8 BSF bronze/gunmetal bolts had obviously been stretched when tightened on a previous occasion so, although they 'tightened' on the stretched portion of the thread, there was insufficient compression on the joint to make it tight - in the short term this was solved by using a thicker gasket but, in the course of time, I will probably have new bolts made to replace the stretched originals.


The engine is now back in running order and running very nicely - which means that it will no longer be necessary to bow-haul 'Alnwick' to Cropredy Wharf for fresh water! And, after a gap of almost three months, it is really nice to hear that familiar Kelvin sound again . . .

Some interesting lighting products

19 October 2014 - 09:57 PM

Jane and I have just returned from a holiday in Greece that did include some boating and a visit to a harbourside chandlery. We were fascinated by what the proprietor described as lighting for boats and gardens. Having returned home we have looked up the manufacturers website which is available in English. If you are seeking some nice industrial solid brass lighting to illuminate your engine room, the link below is worth investigating: