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Scholar Gypsy

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Everything posted by Scholar Gypsy

  1. I would say that is fail unsafe, as if there is a problem with that electrical circuit the engine might decide to stop at a most inconvenient moment!
  2. Foxton and Watford locks were built as narrow locks. The left hand map here shows there were sideponds in the mid 1800s (and probably earlier). Some of them got a bit squished when the inclined plane was built ca 1900 (see right hand map). The one by the crossing pound in the middle was completely obliterated, I think. https://maps.nls.uk/geo/explore/side-by-side/#zoom=16.3&lat=52.49936&lon=-0.98177&layers=257&right=168
  3. With Bingley, if you are going uphill and all the lock chambers are empty, then you will need to take four lockfulls of water from the top pound, to fill up each of the top four locks. Conversely if you are going downhill and the locks are full then you will empty four locks of water into the lower pound. Not as efficient as a Foxton type arrangement. (To make Bingley more efficient, you need something like boats only going uphill in the morning, and only doing downhill in the afternoon. This is a bit counter-intuitive, I know, and ignores the possibility of shuffling.)
  4. Comparing Foxton and Bingley - both five lock staircases - the latter will use more water, unless all the boats are travelling in the same direction. (Ignore the fact that the latter are wide locks, which also permits the shuffle maneuver...) I quite like the French approach which is to open all the gates and then fill the chambers up from the top, moving the boats forward as you go!
  5. One just above Duke's lock. Banbury, above the lock. Heyford mill is electric, ditto Thrupp. Thats all I can remember from my recent trip...
  6. I agree this is a pity. But gives me an opportunity to show my Banbury stick in operation this summer (just north of Wolvercote lock). The bridge is naturally fairly finely balanced, and it was windy, so that's why there is a rope to hold the bridge down on the pole. This bridge also had a locking mechanism (you can see it at ground level) that uses a standard CRT key.
  7. Yes, agreed. PS Looking on Google earth, the sideponds at Watford are about 350' x 50', which is over 30 times the area of the lock. The ones at Foxton are more variable, as to shape, size and orientation. This map makes it clear they were squashed up a bit when the inclined plane was built... I think it also shows that the pound between the two flights used to be much bigger than it is today.. https://maps.nls.uk/geo/explore/side-by-side/#zoom=16.3&lat=52.49939&lon=-0.98171&layers=257&right=BingHyb
  8. I don't think this calculation is quite right (though the operating process is correct). With side ponds that have the same area as the lock, then 1) With a single side pond the water level will vary between 1/3 and 2/3 full. When going downhill you put 1/3 of a lockful into the side pond (which then goes from 1/3 to 2/3 full), and then you empty the rest into the lower pound. When going uphill you take 1/3 of a lockful out of the sidepond (which then goes from 2/3 to 1/3 full), and then fill the remaining 2/3 from the upper pound. 33% of water saved. 2) With two side ponds, the upper one will vary between 1/2 and 3/4 full, and the lower one between 1/4 and 1/2 full. Going downhill you put 1/4 lockful into the upper pound (which goes from 1/2 to 3/4 full, with the lock going down from full to 3/4 full). Then you put another 1/4 lockful into the lower pond (which goes from 1/4 to 1/2 full). Then you empty the remaining 1/2 lockful to the lower pound. Going uphill you take 1/4 lockful from the lower pond (which goes from 1/2 to 1/4 full) and then another 1/4 from the top one (which goes from 3/4 to 1/2 full), and then fill the remaining 1/2 lock from the upper pound. 50% of water saved. With large side ponds (say 20 times the area of the lock, which I would guess is the case at Foxton and Watford), they are much more efficient as the level in the side ponds can be assumed constant. So a single side pond will be at the 1/2 full level, and can take and then discharge 1/2 a lockful of water with only a small change in level. This is logically equivalent to replacing one deep lock with two shallow ones, and so will use half the amount of water. I really should get out more.
  9. It's hard to see how this would be possible, as a) FBW is a coalition of many different organisations, many of which are not charities (eg boat clubs); and b) I don't believe FBW has yet been set up as a separate legal entity, let along a charity. However I think you could make a donation to IWA and ask for this to be used to support the FBW campaign.
  10. The maths of side ponds is quite interesting (well I think so!). The key variable is the ratio of the area of the pond to the area of the lock. If this is 1:1 then you get one solution (for the full and empty levels of each side pond, and for the amount of water that is saved - for example with two side ponds you can save 50% of the water, with one only 33%). If the ratio is much bigger then one can assume the level stays fixed in the side pond (like Foxton), and two ponds can save 2/3 of the water. One could re-imagine each five lock flight at Foxton as one huge lock, 70' long and with a single drop of 37'6", with four large side ponds at intermediate levels. In this case 4/5 of the water is saved (the consumption is to fill or empty the last part) compared with operating it as a single 37'6" lock. Of course the reason the lock is not built that way is that it would require rather large bottom gates (*), though it would save on brickwork. (* Footnote, unless one made the bottom end of the lock a solid wall, with a hole for the boat to go through ...)
  11. No. The Red paddle connects the side pond to the lower lock, the white paddle to the upper lock. When both paddles are up then the water level equalises between both locks and the side pond, you open the gate and move from one lock to the next.
  12. Thank you - some nice photos. That almost looks like the Waverley at Southend pier.... but the wrong number of chimneys https://scholargypsy.org.uk/2022/09/29/ps-waverley-gravesend-to-clacton/
  13. A very fair description! I do a lot of cruising on the Fens and Middle Level as well, and it has been three years since I have had to go down the weed hatch. (though my son had to go down recently to untangle the stern line ....)
  14. Ah, I was wondering if I couldn't see this data as I have a gold licence and my home mooring is on an EA waterway. But I see that's not the case as the option has been withdrawn.
  15. I suspect another reason for this byelaw is to stop boats using their engine to control their position in the lock. That's what the bow and stern line are for.
  16. Bampton is pretty much the centre of English Morris Dancing, I believe (and not very close to the river)...
  17. Yes, indeed. We had spent several days in Leicester waiting for the water level to drop. Some of the bridges were a little tight. As I say, much more pleasant in normal conditions! https://scholargypsy.org.uk/2019/06/06/spring-cruise-2-kilby-bridge-to-trent-lock/
  18. I had a similar impression of the Soar, from my trip in 1980. Took until 2019 to get a better impression on my second visit!
  19. It's glorious https://scholargypsy.org.uk/2023/07/27/2023-main-voyage-phase-3-thrupp-to-lechlade/
  20. Thank you, I think I will see how the modification above works -- ie replacing both joints and putting in flat washers. The previous setup has worked fine for 29 years....
  21. Thanks, I think I've got it now. Not even necessary to snip the black seal, it just flips off to reveal a nice flat surface to take the sort of washer you suggest....
  22. Thanks, that is interesting. The tapered seals are different to the original design which had a flat washer. It's a mission critical bit of plumbing (part of main cooling system) which is why I obsess about it. But I think need a washer of some sort to compress and make a watertight seal between the end of the pipe and the plastic part of the fitting.
  23. Sorry, the one in the photo above. A 1/2" BSP fitting on a calorifier, which can shake loose. I am thinking about a couple of these: https://www.amazon.co.uk/sourcing-map-Flange-Locknut-Plumbing/dp/B09N3D51J7/ref=sr_1_12_sspa?adgrpid=1184174922457787&hvadid=74011150424783&hvbmt=be&hvdev=c&hvlocphy=132547&hvnetw=o&hvqmt=e&hvtargid=kwd-74011072442785%3Aloc-188&hydadcr=29387_2328104&keywords=1%2F2+bsp+nut&qid=1693917717&sr=8-12-spons&sp_csd=d2lkZ2V0TmFtZT1zcF9tdGY&psc=1
  24. I may be overthinking this, but I am wondering if there is a way to tighten this fitting to make sure it doesn't come loose again. Ideas so far: 1) Tighten it some more using my pipe wrench 2) Use some PTFE tape (I know it's to make it watertight, which is not the issue) 3) Apply some loctite (there do seem to be rather a lot of products, maybe this one: https://www.vikingtapes.co.uk/products/loctite-243-threadlocker-blue-medium-strength?variant=40172618940479 4) Find a nut to go on the thread, and then lock it to the fitting (in a similar way to my stern gland) Many thanks!
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