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Posts posted by cuthound

  1. 15 minutes ago, MtB said:


    Aren't all accidents always the other driver's fault?


    "Reading' the road, anticipating collision opportunities and driving in a manner to avoid them happening is quite a subtle skill which only truly shows up in a driver's long term accident record. 


    I've always said you can judge how good (oe bad) a driver is by his no claims bonus...

  2. 2 hours ago, Bee said:

    Batteries are horrible things. If only they had a lid so you could open the top and have a look to see if they were full or empty. What most of us don't realise is just how long it takes to charge a couple or three batteries. On Bee we have 2 x 110 AH batteries - or that is what they were 4 years ago, it takes 4 or 5 hours to charge them from the engine and no doubt you could squeeze a bit more in from a decent charger. We look after them and don't flatten them or they will play tricks like saying they are charged when in fact they are scrap. We now have a bit of solar (not much, just one panel of 30 watts????) and I think it is brilliant, it saves batteries from death and although it cannot power the boat it works all the daylight hours. This summer I will add another one. 


    The ones I used to work on didn't have tops...


  3. 3 hours ago, Ronaldo47 said:

    I believe that it is a legal requirement to have third party insurance for motor vehicles. Certainly GEC (when it was a large company!) only used to take out third party insurance for its company cars as the cost of fully comp insurance would have exceeded the cost of repairing or writing-off damaged vehicles.  The Government does the same sort of thing in relation to insurance in general, which is why the disastrous fire at Windsor Castle a couple of decades ago was not covered by any insurance. 


    I adopt the same practice regarding breakdown insurance for domestic white goods, which are normally pretty reliable these days: I don't take any out.


    Until fairly recently, if you were rich enough, you could leave a large cash deposit (£500,000 when it was revoked) with a high court rather than take out a motor insurance policy and still comply with the road traffic act.




    IIRC it was £50,000 when I passed my driving test way back in 1971.

  4. 4 hours ago, IanD said:


    Just don't assume the locks at Grindley will be quick, we've had to wait between 1h and 3h to get through... 😞


    Back in the days before Grindley Brook had a lock-keeper, I was stuck in a queue for over 4 hours. I dispatched Mrs Hound to see why we weren't moving.  It turned out there were a lot of boats coming down, who just kept entering the staircase, so no one could go up. 


    Mrs Hound sorted it out eventually, and since then I always try to overnight at Grindley Brook and go through first thing in the morning.

  5. On 17/02/2024 at 09:06, Sea Dog said:

    I'd echo the sentiments of @blackrose above.


    Eberspacher had a bit of a reputation for early failures some years ago and did their own investigation. Their ensuing report is a available on the web (Google is your friend), but essentially they found that when lightly loaded they coked up and eventually failed. The key is to work it hard then shut it down which is to say have a keen ear for it going into the low power mode - you can hear it run down and the dose pump ticking go slow.  I tend to use mine in 1hr bursts which allows me to warm the boat on a morning whilst the solid fuel stove comes back up to speed and gives a tank of hot water. Even in that hour half an ear is listening for short cycling. This usage pattern appears not too dissimilar to how @Rob-M got 20 years out of his.


    Additionally, my own regime is to use "Reliability Centred Maintenance" principles and leave the damned thing alone if it's happy. Mine is 15 years old and has never been interfered with - others have had different experiences. I


    That Is the advice I was given when I bought my boat 10 years ago, run the Webasto (very similar to the Eberspacher)  for an hour on and an hour off, don't let it run at half power and only get it serviced when it goes wrong.


    To date I've had no problems with it.

  6. On 16/02/2024 at 15:01, john6767 said:

    I thought the CRT said there was no widebeam mooring on the narrow North Oxford when accessing the marinas there, but this booking is to spend two nights on the canal while making the passage.  I know the North Oxford is shut further north so there will not be a lot of traffic, but seems a bit off.



    Oxford Canal
    Location: Wide beam passage, Braunston to Dunchurch Pools
    Starts At: Bridge 93/94, Braunston Junction
    Ends At: Bridge 81, Borstal Bridge

    Sunday 18 February 2024 09:00 until Tuesday 20 February 2024 10:00

    Type: Advice 
    Reason: Information


    Original message:


    Please be advised a wide beam boat will be passing through Braunston to Dunchurch Pool from Sunday 18th February to Tuesday 20th February morning.

    We kindly remind boating customers to be aware of the wide-beam boat and take extra care whilst passing through this section of the canal.


    I've been forced to follow really slow widebeams in that area a couple of times, but fortunately none travelling that slowly... :(


  7. On 15/02/2024 at 14:16, jonathanA said:

    what ever who ever installed it decided .....  Alan very kindly provided the ISO spec for AC wiring, I was actually wondering what the DC spec was if it exists.


    if was me blue would 12V neg, brown would be 'live' so 12v pos. and green yellow i would not use or at a push might use it for a switch wire, but sleeved or marked.   

    it probably didn't matter as much in those days as the old telecom wiring codes used a solid colour and a tracer or had a cotton outer sheath.  i think they also learned about colour blindness and when i had my PO engineering interview the interviewer had a cable sample and asked me to identify the colour of each core.  At the time i thought it odd, until someone told me it was a colour blindness test.  I suspect you would not be able to discriminate against someone like that now... 


    When I joined Post Office Telephones (International Branch), back in 1972 I and all of the other entrants I joined with were subjected to a pretty comprehensive medical, which included tens of charts with multi-coloured splodges on them. Each one had a number hidden in it, which was only visible if you didn't have colour blindness of the colours the chart was looking for.

  8. 13 hours ago, Richard T said:

    That looks like Kimberley. I hired Lindsey in 1976 with a group of scouts.


    Yes that is Kimberley. Sadly I didn't take any photos which show the name and can't remember which camping boats we hired from UCC (2 boats for the scouting holiday and a single boat the following year for myself and a group of friends).

  9. On 14/02/2024 at 23:29, MtB said:


    Especially in the world of light commercial vans. There are only about three available nowadays apparently, despite the wide range of brands. 


    Posh Mercedes Vito vans are for example, identical to those ghastly cheap Renault vans when viewed from underneath and/or under bonnet. 



    As are Mercedes A Class. Much cheaper to buy the exact same spares for a Renault for your A Class.

  10. That seems pretty cheap to me. Five years ago I enquired about having my 60 foot boat repainted and the quotes varies from £130 per foot plus signwriting to remove windows & other external fittings and rub down the existing paint and put more coats on (three colours including coach lines) to £210 per foot plus signwriting for a back to the metal job.


    I chose the cheaper option as the original paint was sound but faded and it still looks good five years later.

  11. On 11/02/2024 at 17:51, IanD said:

    That's usually recommended to be set around 55C, much too hot for a shower (around 40C).


    I think you are talking at cross purposes to @rusty69.


    Most domestic calorifiers are thermostatically controlled to 65 degrees to save enregy and avoid legionella problems, not an issue with boats where the calorifier is heated by the engine coolant (typically 80 degrees or a diesel boiler such as a Webasto). Fitting a thermostatic mixer valve set to around 40 degrees to the outlet of a boat's calorifier ensures that no one can get accidentally scalded AND effectively increases the useable capacity of the calorifier.

  12. On 29/01/2024 at 15:48, Ronaldo47 said:

    I remember that, when I was taking driving lessons in the late 1960's, the instructor said that "three-point turn" was a misnomer, as the requirement was just to turn the vehicle round using forward and reverse gears.  I took my test in Cardiff, where the camber of some side roads was so great that the crown of the road was higher than the pavement. On those roads, doing a 3 point turn used to  involve doing a hill start as well.


    I took my driving test in Surbiton, Surrey. Some of the avenues there are quite wide, and my examiner chose one of these for me to "turn the car around using forward and reverse gears". 


    I turned going forwards, reversed back across the road perfectly, then a lady chose to park exactly where I was turning, prevent me from completing the move.


    I didn't know what to do, but my examiner got out and remonstrated with the lady, and got her to move along the road a bit and park there.


    By now I was completely flustered and couldn't release the pawl button on the handbrake. When I finally managed it I shot across the road and had to reverse back again as I didn't have time to turn properly, turning an easy 3 point turn into a 5 point turn. I was convinced that I had failed and was very pleasantly surprised when the examiner announced that I had passed. 

  13. 17 hours ago, Ronaldo47 said:

    In the late 1950's, a cousin had a pen pal who lived in South Africa. Her father worked in a uranium mine, and she once sent my cousin, through the post, a matchbox full of lumps of uranium ore. They were crystalline and a dirty yellow colour,  resembling irregular granulated sugar lumps. We often used to play with them when we visited.  


    I'll bet your mum didn't have any trouble finding out where you were hiding on a dark night... :)   :)


  14. When did you last buy diesel?


    Winter diesel has a anti waxing agent added to prevent the formation of wax at low temperatures. If It starts and runs OK when the temperature rises, it will be because you have summer diesel in your tank which has waxed because of the low temperature and caused a blockage. 

  15. 5 hours ago, Ken X said:

    One thing which others may be able to confirm or otherwise. 


    Many years ago I had a mate who ran a grasstrack bike and sidecar.  I seem to recall this ran on Ethanol or a derivative and occasionally caught fire.  The problem was the fuel burnt with a clear flame so the first warning we had was when things started getting hot.  The bizarre sight then ensued of us frantically beating out an invisible fire.


    Might be something to consider if Ethanol is used as a fuel.


    I remember watching a saloon car race at Goodwood many years ago. A car fuelled with ethanol crashed and caught fire. The driver, Peter Proctor,  got out and began rolling about on the grass. It was only when the grass began to burn with visible flames that the marshalls used their fire extinguishers on him.



  16. 5 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

    We did ours at Chesterfield with the local Electrical supply company with real switches


    We had real switches and switchboards too, it was just that they were switching 50 volts DC. The only fake thing was the standby generator, which was a cassette player playing a recording of a diesel.generator... 🤣


    Once you had passed the initial course you were then trained on specific real installations and if successful given either an 'HV Approved Person' or 'HV Competent Person' ticket, which was valid on that specific installation for one year 


    Later I became the 'Engineer HV' for a site and eventually 'Senior Engineer HV' for an area. These roles were mainly administrative, writing or approving method statements and switching schedules.

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