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    Calf Heath

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  1. We bought a boat from Venetian Marina in 1975. The boat was called Shiela,was built of plywood with a Stuart Turner inboard engine. suplied new in 1968. This engine(aP5 MRE) was supplied as a replacement for the origional. Last hire licence was issued in 1971 number395. The boat was built by Deans of Chester and I believe was opperated by them as a hire boat. My guess would be that the boat was built in late 50"s. It was as rotten as a pear when we bought it.. Venetian delivered it free by road. I suspect they were glad to see the back of it. I tipped it over and fitted a complete new bottom and replaced the bottom of the sides. Started our interest in canals,kepped it a year and moved on to a steel boat.
  2. From my experience with an H P I 42 unit,the horse power rating is at an engine speed that does not relate to canal use. The engine was an Isuzu 42hp. My engine was raw water cooled,(with a heat exchanger) which was normaly supplied suplied for sea going use, with a PRM 120, while the keel cooled unit was supplied with the PRM 150, Plenty of power for river use,but my engine would not rev beond 2,200 rpm(acording to the rev counter) I believe the base unit was not de-rated for marine use so the 42hp would be at the flywheel at somewhere near to 3,000 rpm? I believe the Canal line engine is the same unit.
  3. Barges were used on the Wolverton gravel pits. The pits were not connected to the Grand Union,although not far away. I suppose the old Newport Pagnel arm would have been the closest,but probably long closed before the gravel was worked. I remember one of the tugs pulled out of the water in early 70,s Apparently,the gravel company had the idea to have it as a feature at the entrance to the pits. No idea what happened to the tugs and barges.
  4. I remember a full length motor moored in Runcorn in about 1972,which had a masive dent in the middle of one side. At the time the boat was being used,I believe, by a church youth group. The engine was a petrol /parafin unit.The conversion used ex bus windows I think the boat may have been callel Edwardian Monarch at the time,but I dont recall if the name was painted on.
  5. Bridgewater Motor Boat Club at Sprinch Yard in Runcorn?
  6. Sorry double post on limmit of nav on L&L. Obvious first call for a mooring would be Lymm Cruising Club,possibly Bridgewater Motor boat Cub(Country moorings) or Watch House Cruising Club.
  7. If I remember correctly,Croxton Aqueduct (before Big Lock) is the limit on the Trent and Mersey.I have been through with a boat about 8ft. Covered by a Bridgewater licence,. Does a Bridgewater licence cover you as far as Wigan? Obviously,length is an issue if you want to cross the Leeds and Liverpool.
  8. I have all the early copies of Waterways World from,issue number 1. Have run out of storage space. Am in mid Wales. Anybody want them.?
  9. Rather like these old Ford diesels,although I have never had one in a boat. Last time I had a belt snap on one, fitted a new belt and off I went. Never heard of one putting a rod through the side,but I guess it could happen. I rather liked the earlier 1.6 engine. The 1.8 could be fitted with a turbo.That should give you a bit of power. Regarding availability of second hand units,they were everywhere. BUT,when did you last see an Escort van. We live in a throwaway society. Once a vehicle phases out,the breakers soon loose interest. Still about,but not for much longer.
  10. Many people in this area have installed log or woodchip burners and have recieved large amounts of taxpayers money because they are "a good thing" Cant see how being paid to heat your own house is a good eco measure. I believe there may be wood chip fueled power station(s). Converted from coal fired? Cant get fencing posts for love nor money at the moment,as all the thinings are being chipped.
  11. Have always used a Garmin GPS on our narrowboat. Gives an accurate speed over the ground and easy to use mounted in front of the helmsman. In some ways a bit ott for a narrowboat,but as it only cost pennies second hand,a no brainer. Makes it easy to judge correct throttle setting. Surprising how you can ease off the throttle and not reduce speed over the ground.
  12. Having run many Land Rover products over the last 40 years,I have mixed feelings. The older proucts could be run into the ground and then patched up to get a bit more out of then.My last l322 Range Rover Vogue was a joy to drive on the rare occasions when it was running. I hope the new vehicles made by Tata are more reliable. When a new top of the range Disco with all the bells and whistles cost £75k I cant see how these sort of prices can be justified. I have now converted to Bangernomicks. In this day and age when people are taking cars with life left in them to the scrapyard,useable cars can be purchased for less than the price of a good dinner.
  13. There were some moorings at Peates Mill, Maesbury,in the arm up to the mill .Not sure about present situation. There are moorings in Welshpool,but this section of canal is not connected to the national network. Last time I checked,you could only stay on the canal for a few days. The Heulwen boats have their own moorings at Buttington(On the Welshpool length)
  14. Well worth exploring the Montgomery Canal. Very few boats,so very peacsefull and travells through pleasant countryside .If anybody thinks that an abandoned canal is better without boats,look at the canal in Newtown.The towpath exists,but the bed of the canal has been filled with a sewer pipe. All credit to CaRT for the way the whole isolated sections are maintained.(Apart from the last section in Newtown,which belongs to Severn Trent Water) In fairness to Severn Trent and Powys County Council,the footpath in this section is excellent.
  15. I gather that the man with the gun was holding it for legitimate reasons(pest control)when he came upon the people stealing a valuable piece of machinery. As I understand it,the only threat made was by one of the people trying to steal the machine,who then made off.
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