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NB Alnwick

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About NB Alnwick

  • Birthday 02/22/1947

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Cropredy, Oxford Canal
  • Interests
    Folk music, boats, trains, classic cars, classic racing cycles, real watches, fountain pens and almost anything vintage . . .

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
  • Boat Name
    Alnwick (pronounced 'Annick')
  • Boat Location
    Usually moored at Cropredy

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NB Alnwick's Achievements



  1. On our boat, not yet - it can be done though! The whistles on early electric locomotives and on the London Underground to the present day are all operated by air pressure. We rather fancy the type of siren whistle fitted to WWII destroyers - that would waken the lockies! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_al9owcieHQ
  2. Thank you for retrieving those manuals and thank you for sending them to me. I still do not have a parts list but it would appear that the makers, Stoves, are still in business and can supply some parts at a price. Can anyone tell me when these Vanette products were in production? I was advised to approach caravan breakers for spares but I think these were more often fitted to narrow boats because they are pretty well up to the normal domestic kitchen spec and would be too large and too heavy for most touring vans.
  3. You beat me to it! Ecover was once an acceptable product but big business saw an opportunity and stepped in to buy them out. The name is the same but the product is now sold as a result of clever marketing. We recently discovered Surcare products for laundry and washing up. For most other things, good old fashioned soap without perfume is always a good bet and we like the products sold by Peace with the wild. No connection other than it is where I have purchased my shaving products. You been watching those cows again?
  4. I did look at one of those tools when they were first placed on the market and was fascinated by the size of the multi-function 'blade' in relation to the short shaft - I doubt if it would have reached our prop and I now wonder how many times those who bought them actually used them with success? Edited to add that when we first purchased Alnwick, I had a notion that it would be a good idea to have a tool for releasing debris from the prop. I therefore made a tool which resembled an Assegai spear - it didn't work and ever since I have just used the hook.
  5. "A gap in the market" roughly translated means another opportunity to fleece mugs with more money than sense. I remember seeing these things advertised and I am sure that the professional boatmen of old would have been highly amused.
  6. The answer is for those who go boating to make time beforehand to study and learn how everything on their own boat works and how to prevent it from breaking down and then how to fix it when it breaks. This is not as difficult as it sounds - if boaters only ever purchased boats that matched their personal understanding and ability there would be a lot more happy boaters. There is an alternative to this and that is to hire in the expertise but few can really afford to employ a resident boat fitter/gas fitter/engineer/electrician!
  7. Drifting slightly off-topic - the best fill for pot holes is good old 'MOT No. 1' which is a mix of stone dust and chippings of various sizes up to about 40mm. Because of the mix of sizes it compacts well and stays put without the addition of tarmacadam. In my day, we started to use this for vehicle paths on the railway - that was after the Environment agency told us not to use cinders.
  8. I very much doubt that they would have bothered themselves with undoing a weed hatch when a couple of minutes (at most) with the boat hook would have solved the problem. Of course, our predecessors would have had more skill in these matters than most 21st Century leisure boaters.
  9. It looks as if someone tried to fill them with ash - but probably the 'wrong type of ash' because unlike hard coal ash, the ash from wood and the manufactured briquettes commonly used on boat stoves, is not suitable for this purpose.
  10. These days, where determining the real management control of many companies requires a degree of intuitive detective work to get through the maize of non-operational holding companies, charges, assets, and operational offshoots, it is not easy for an outsider to work out what is really happening when this sort of announcement is made. There are some familiar names appearing as directors of the Aquavista group and I can see that the recent name change was an expensive 're-branding' exercise but nowhere near the scale of the aborted scheme to rebrand the Post Office as 'Consignia'. Perhaps the consultants thought the name indicated a beautiful view of water? My guess is that both groups have substantial loans secured against their assets because they will have borrowed heavily to establish their businesses. The action announced may provide better long term security and stability in an ever changing financial climate and this could be a good thing for those of us who are the customers.
  11. From the Companies House website: AQUAVISTA WATERSIDES LTD Previous company names BRITISH WATERWAYS MARINAS LIMITED 13 Oct 2003 - 27 Jul 2020 So what are the likely benefits to moorers?
  12. This looks just like the bucket that we use - and although I wouldn't recommend the practice, the paint finish does seem to be sufficiently robust to withstand the red-hot ash and cinders that we occasionally drop into it. The lid helps to keep the ash dry and prevents dust ready for responsible disposal. Prices on Amazon range from just under £13 but we paid twice that for ours from a our local stove retailer. I don't regret paying the extra because that way we were able to examine the product prior to purchase - some of the reviewers who purchased similar items from Amazon have complained about poor quality and it is likely that these may have received cheap and inferior copies.
  13. True and we also thought it a good thing based on years of traditional practice. Cinder paths were once commonplace in the steam railway era partially because they were readily available and worked as an effective weed deterrent.. That said, I have never dumped ash in a hedge or on vegetation. And, for the last five years have used an ash bucket to make sure that our ash is disposed legally.
  14. Waste disposal is usually entrusted to specialist contractors - steam railway operation in the 21st Century is a very expensive business.
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