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  8. When I used to be a part time steerer on the trip boat in Sheffield we used to return with a fine collection of crap off the prop most trips. It all went in the CRT bins but bigger items were left next to the bins for removal. Unbelievably we had a letter from CRT telling us that on no account should rubbish from the canal be left for collection with general waste! Not long after a full fire hose was retrieved from the prop and brought proudly back to the basin, we tied it in knots through the door handles of the CRT office.
    6 points
  9. I had assumed that the random piles of oddments by the side of the canal were Art works sponsored by C&RT or Local Authorities.
    6 points
  10. Your Armstrong Siddeley 3 cylinder engine (recently removed from Tug Sultan) was rescued from a sunken ‘barge’ called Spyder in Yorkshire, in around 1978. Not sure exactly what kind of boat she was - absolutely cavernous compared to a narrowboat. Nor can I remember exactly where. What I do remember, location wise, was a huge pump out barge that came up daily to collect sewage waste from a few hundred yards away, just up the river. So probably one of the members of this forum will be able to place that? I bought the barge from BWB for £10 on the understanding that we would remove her from where she was and scrap the hull. Mark, a friend and I were trying to pump her out for a couple of days to refloat her and get access to the engine, which was totally under water. We couldn’t even see what type of engine it was. Luckily it was completely submerged and under an oil slick, so it wasn’t corroded. All we had was a little ex-GPO petrol pump. The guys on the waste barge, seeing our continuing efforts, very kindly came alongside and connected their pumps and she popped up like a cork. Two days later, to their great surprise, we had dried out the engine, oiled it, connected a battery and we motored past them going upstream, towards the scrap yard which was beside the river, a little further up. They don’t make ‘em like they used to! The scrap yard lifted the engine out for us and we took it back to Birmingham, where Mark rebuilt it. Not very well, I’m afraid. Because the subsequent owner had to have it sorted shortly afterwards. She was always a bit smoky.
    5 points
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  15. Another from the archive floor. Down Braunston way when the trees were much shorter and I had a full head of hair.
    5 points
  16. Greetings! Yes, I'm another one of those bloody yanks who've seen the canal boat documentaries (some better than others) and it's piqued my interest in a narrowboat holiday. It's be a major undertaking in travel just to GET to the narrowboat, so I wouldn't consider anything less than a fortnight on the water. And definitely not this year, and definitely not during a school holiday. TOO CROWDED. I very much enjoy the fall, and fortnight on the canals in mid-September 2022 would be the plan. To that end I'll be lurking about the message boards absorbing all the knowledge and wisdom I can. It's over a year until the trip so enough time to plan the whole lot. Only one hitch; I'm traveling solo, so don't know if any of the for hire companies will rent to just one bloke like me. Hope so, and I better settle that bit first before I get too deep into the plan. I know this much; I'd like to hire a narrowboat, and then one that's 45ft maximum so I'm not limited in the route I choose. A nice "circle" tour would be ideal. Don't fear locks, just don't want the trip to turn into a locking exercise. Tunnels? I ain't scared. Pubs aren't important since I'm not that much of a boozer, more interested in the classic English countryside and small towns and village. And I'll be cooking on board most nights and mornings with an occasional lunch. That one guy w/ the narrowboat program that cooks a lot has me wanting to try steak & kidney pie, toads in the hole w/ gravy, Yorkshire pudding, and of course that classic big English breakfast. I'm sure to have a lot more questions after I dive into the research, and that's the fun end of it for me. So thanks to the mods and those who maintain this website, and for the members who participate actively. Look forward to learning a lot. gpk
    4 points
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  24. It's barely been 24 hours since I joined and made my first post. Just overwhelmed and humbled by the outpouring of positive encouragement from this community. Thank you. With that one brief post I've gained a wealth of knowledge and ideas from those that know canal boating the best. Looking forward to learning a lot more from this amiable community in the future. Thank you again. Greg P.S. Best feature on Hector? The solid fuel stove. Very few hire boats have them. Can see me self now, berthed outside some small town, sun going down, steak and kidney pie roasting in the boatman stove's oven made from stuff I bought fresh in town that very afternoon. Bucket-list stuff.
    4 points
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  28. Fixing a leak in the keel cooling. With no drydock within many miles we had to use the slipway at Auxerre. The heavy load bent the end of the skeg upwards, locking solid the rudder. This we discovered when the boat floated off and I had to let her crash into a (fortunately) strong) metal boat with a handy rail to attach to,as an alternative to drifting down to the barrage. A friend then torched a bit of clearance higher up and it all worked again.
    4 points
  29. I’m not sure if Tesco noticed the difference with 2 trolleys in Stalybridge but it was worth a try 🤣
    4 points
  30. The recent hot weather has brought out the usual increase in drownings as people seek to cool off. For those of us that fall into the canal, the best advice is to stand up - most canals are shallow enough that your head will be above water and you can then take stock of your situation. But if you fall into deeper water this is worth remembering: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-57918218
    4 points
  31. My advice is to do everything as slowly as possible - that in fact is the real skill. Only put on as many engine revs as you require to make the boat so what you want it to do, no more. I see so many boaters using far too many engine revs to do simple manoeuvres that they could do using less engine power. Then of course they slam the engine into reverse and rev hard to counteract all those forward revs they unnecessarily applied. It's much easier to add a bit more revs if you need to rather than trying to take excess speed off by going into a hard reverse. Once you go into reverse of course you lose steering so before you do that drop the gearbox into neutral for a few seconds and see what effect the wind and/or current are having on the boat and use the boat's momentum to take you where you want to go before dropping it back into gear. The slower you do all of that the more time you'll have to react if things do go wrong which they invariably will. And when things go wrong if you're panicking on the inside try not to let that show on the outside. Then if you manage to regain control nobody watching will know that you nearby lost it. Eventually with your calm exterior you'll even convince yourself and you'll gradually become more confident and capable. Remember: You are adrift. Do it slowly or even slower. Plan ahead. Consider the forces. Work with wind and current. Feel how the boat is responding. Manage the movement. Be safe. (Edward Burrell 2005)
    4 points
  32. When we had a share in a shareboat, we stayed at Gayton for a couple of years. They were one of the better bases we stayed at from an engineering point of view and unusually for a shareboat, allocated us a dedicated berth on a pontoon. The marina is a bit windy and the reverse to the pontoon certainly sharpened my reversing skills ABC also gave each shareholder a discount card for use in any ABC marina. In my experience of shareboating (1992-2013), it is better to use a marina with a hire fleet, because they understand the need to turnaround (including quick repairs) quickly. Twice in my time we stayed at marinas without hire fleets and both times there were several occasions where the boat was not ready on time due to the lack of urgency getting the boat turned around.
    3 points
  33. Recently been basking in high 20's / low 30's temperatures, today the dog is shivering in his bed, covered in his quilt and we have had to fire up the blown-air eberspacher. With 5 minutes the inside temperature has gone up from 14-15c to 20c and is still climbing, thermostat set at 25c Luxury - comfort - warmth. Dog moved himself and reversed up to the hot air vent, but we'll need to turn him over soon. Non-stop rain and high winds, Forecast dry but cool and windy for the next 3 days, then 14 days of rain. Welcome to Summer boating in Wales.
    3 points
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  38. Shame your are supporting the Disneyfication of the system! A friend of mine had a bad experience where the steerer hit the sides several times for no good reason and was clearly pretty incompetent. It is a great tunnel but surely part of the fun is driving your own boat through rather than being a passenger on a ride?
    3 points
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  42. My vote for a narrowboat washer goes to.... The tiny twin tub. Doesn't use much water Doesnt draw much current Doesn't take up much space Spin dries spectacularly well
    3 points
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  48. No good will come of it, its too soon. The number of boats requiring intensive care will rocket, possibly overwhelming available resources.
    3 points
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