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Tony1

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Tony1 last won the day on October 8 2021

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    CCer, currently in Cheshire

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  • Boat Name
    All That Jazz

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  1. Thinking about it. they would have to cover a decent distance for the rural customers. I need to get on the case. I've been using the local Spar at Tattenhall when I could have had Waitrose delicacies delivered to the marina nearby...
  2. I dont know why the idea of drawing in cold air from outside the boat hasn't been explored more by boaters looking to save electricity and keep their food cool during winter. A small computer fan would suck in enough air to cool the fridge. But I will confess that I'm quite lazy, so for me personally, the idea of using cool boxes and getting more frequent deliveries is more hassle than I fancy. Also, where I am now, near Tattenhall, I'm not sure a supermarket would deliver to this location as they are all about 7 miles away in Chester. Even an inefficient fridge like mine only needs about 40Ah a day, so for me the lesser evil was to just generate the extra power needed, and solar does it for most of the year. Then from Nov to Feb, I can generate the 40Ah needed in about 25 mins of engine running. There is certainly a cost involved (extra solar etc) in running a fridge, but for me it was worth doing it for the convenience.
  3. The maximum available depth is 60cm, although I believe I would have to leave an air gap. I did have a bit of a browse a few months ago out of interest, and I was a bit alarmed at the lack of options....
  4. I'm tempted to get one of these, I must say. With other things I can get a reasonable idea of their energy usage using the Victron BMV712. As I'm sure you know, I can also do this with the fridge- but only when its actually running. The problem is that the compressor kicks in intermittently as needed, and I cant say how much of the time its actually on. I think pre-lithiums and pre-solar, I would have had a sharper interest in getting an accurate idea of the fridge energy usage, but as I have all the (solar) electricity I need for 8 months of the year, its become a more academic question. Still, it does appeal to my inner academic (yes, very much inner) to know what it uses over 24 hours.....
  5. I was impressed with the performance of the 240v model in the video, so its good to know there are better-performing models available. One thing I noticed with mine is that running the thermostat a bit higher makes a bigger difference than I would've expected to its energy use. I now have mine set at 3, which seems acceptably cool, and my estimate is that it runs (on average) at about 1 amp or less during an 8 hour 'overnight' period. During the other 16 hours (lets say the 'day'), being opened more often, fresh (and warm) contents inserted etc, the compressor will kick in more often and it will use more- but with all the other stuff running during the day its hard to pin down its energy usage. I would guess its average might be 2 amps during that period, so perhaps I'm looking at 8Ah overnight plus 32Ah daytime usage over a 24 hour period- maybe 40Ah in total. And that's a fridge with a poor energy rating, as you discovered. Interestingly, when I set my thermostat at level 6 (of 7), the energy usage overnight was roughly doubled, and the daytime usage would also have increased, although maybe not quite proportionally. The reduction in temp was at most a couple of degrees, judging roughly by feeling the different items by hand. I'm not sure I'm going to attempt all of the necessary maths when the time comes that I need a new fridge. Clearly the expensive models are cheaper to run but more expensive to buy, so perhaps there is a sweet spot somewhere. To be honest what will be the main factor for me personally is the unusual size of the under-counter space. Trying to carve out more room for a slightly larger fridge (for someone whose carpentry skills are very rough) does not seem worth the mess and the effort. So my main initial criteria will be that the new fridge is no more that 50cm wide and 85cm high. The winner will be the best 'affordable' fridge of that size, by which I mean it's no more than about 30-50% more expensive than the average/standard models available. Getting 12v wiring installed will also be an expense, so unless there is an outstanding and affordable 12v model, I'll probably end up with another 240v one.
  6. This is an interesting video by Sterling from a few years ago- one of the things that struck me was that there was a decent power saving to be had if there is no freezer compartment. My fridge came without a freezer, and I'm ok with the compromises that involves at the moment, but there's no denying that the longer food storage periods offered by a freezer would give more flexibility to stay off grid and away from towns for longer periods, if that is something of interest to you personally. Now that I have a lot of solar, running a fridge+freezer would not be an issue at all between March and October. So when the current one fails, I'll definitely give at least some thought to getting a new one with a freezer compartment.
  7. I'm from merseyside so over the decades I've visited Chester many times, but it's never lost its appeal I must say, and it seems there's always loads of stuff you haven't yet seen. I remember visiting with my ex about 8 years ago- we were in Spud-U-Like on St Johns Street, and as I headed to the gents I noticed a passageway on one side, with some excavated roman ruins on show, over a low wall. I remember thinking how strange it was that a commonplace fast food joint should have this carefully excavated ancient Roman stonework next to the gents toilets.
  8. If memory serves the uni students start in late Oct, so its quite possible they weren't 'at home' when you visited. Normally I avoid town centre moorings like the plague, but in this case, as they are on the far side from the towpath users, it looks like they might be quite nice for a day or two- but clearly every other boater thinks the same as me!
  9. Thanks, thats very useful - I had blithely assumed that since hardly any boats are moving, Chester basin might be very quiet- in fact someone at Tattenhall told me so a few days ago- but clearly they were passing on a bit of hearsay. I want to get down through all the locks on Saturday, especially the staircase locks, as its my only day with a crew for ages, and I'd rather have someone on the boat whilst I do the staircase paddles. If the basin is full I'll push on another mile or two- its no bother using the ebike to get back into town for a visit.
  10. To be honest I haven't had to take unusual measures, at least not so far. The CRT bins are usually frequent enough that I can manage, although I did start to struggle last summer on the Llan, as there wasn't much after Ellesmere, and it was area I wanted to travel slowly.
  11. Great thanks, I'll hang on to my rubbish for a few more days in that case- my plan is to go through the 8 locks on Saturday. Can I change the question please? 😄 What is Chester basin mooring like, next to the student accommodation? Are the youngsters very noisy in the evenings, for example? Most people would tend to go through there in summer, when there would be few students about, but at the moment they'll all be in residence.
  12. Just a quick question for anyone who has been through Chester in the last few years. I have a few bags of general rubbish to get rid of and I'd like to cruise north into Chester, and stay at the basin for a few days. I have an electronic waterways map, and it indicates there is a rubbish disposal point on the offside, next to the bridge and just before the three staircase locks. I looked on Google street view and there does seem to be a bin there, but no CRT signs anywhere. Has anyone used this bin recently? Is it a CRT facility or open to the general public, or neither? The next rubbish disposal (if not Chester) seems to be Ellesmere Port, and I'm not sure I fancy going all the way there now- I'd rather tarry in Chester for a week or so, but these bin bags in the cratch are not a pretty sight, and I'd rather be rid of them asap if possible. Will a place like Tattenhall marina accept general waste in bin bags for a fee? Cheers.
  13. I rather think this vindicates my approach of having a crew, but ensuring that it is comprised entirely of imaginary characters. That said, my imaginary shipmate Wilson has started to act a little oddly since we left the T+M. To be fair to the lad, I'm not sure how much one can reasonably expect from a football with a face painted on it in crayon.
  14. For my front set of panels, there is a thick PVC type hose around the solar cables, and that runs along the roof to a gland near the stern, which allows the cable to go down to the MPPT. Because the whole cable is heavy, it cable lays flat and I've never had any issues from it moving about or fouling ropes or other gear. But that said, it doesn't look very nice having this great thick cable snaking its way along most of the roof. If I had any decent woodworking skills I would have put that cable through the roof via a gland (or a roof vent), and run it along to the stern above the ceiling panels- but I'm pretty sure I would make a mess of it, and I don't want the hassle of removing large sections of ceiling panels. I could run it along the ceiling (i.e. where its visible), but that might make the interior look more cluttered, and its bad enough trying to avoid clutter already. So on balance, I've decided to leave it where it is. For now......
  15. This could be a really great solution. I saw a pair of boats like this near Anderton a few weeks ago, where the towed boat was about half the size of the main boat. I didnt check out the towing mechanism, but that could be sorted out with a bit of ironmongery work. The kids would love having their own space (emphasised by being being physically separate from the main boat), and you could rig up a pluggable electrical supply like in a caravan. No need for a bathroom, just give them the key to the main boat and they can use that bathroom at night/evenings if needed. You can then spend a few years getting the main boat just the way you like it for two people (with say 2 guest beds), and the tender boat will always be there if the whole family go cruising when they are older. A 25ft towed boat could actually be an easier thing to make habitable than a 70ft boat, but I've no idea where you would get a 20-30ft towed boat/tender thing- apollo duck?
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