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Jackofalltrades

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    Too old to work. Too young to retire.

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  1. Hello all. We've had a reply to the email that we sent to the boatbuilder. In short, and to paraphrase heavily, they effectively said, F Off - the boat will be ready on Wednesday - but if we don't want it then "as a gesture of goodwill" they'll refund our deposit and "progress with the build" themselves. We are both shocked by their we-don't-give-a-toss response. A bit more back story... As I've said before our shell build was delayed from our original build slot in February. We accepted this (what else could we do?) and just went with it. When the build finally started at the end of March there were exchanges of emails and occasional phone conversations to clarify things and nothing was done as far as we know without our prior knowledge. So as far as the build itself was going we had no cause for concern, until reviewing the photos from our visit on Tuesday, which is where this discussion thread starts. Apart from the picture in my original post in this thread, what the builder has also done without our prior knowledge is fit full length engine/motor bearers from a few inches forward of the 'V' at the back of the swim all the way forward to the cabin bulkhead. This will compromise the usable space at floor level forward of the electric motor. Also, from reviewing our photos taken on Tuesday, although I can't be absolutely sure due to poor light in the workshop, it appears that the builder may have fitted a full length keel cooler - cutting into the port-side motor bearer (as per the pic in post 1) and going as far forward as we can see - possibly up to the bulkhead. On Tuesday we were discouraged from going into the cabin as there was no ladder down and as the stern was greasy, wet and slippery we didn't try. But as the cruiser stern is slightly shorter than standard (7ft in length - to get slightly more cabin space) I have a feeling that the keel cooler *might* extend through the bulkhead into the cabin. The builder knew from the outset the exact electric motor that would be fitted. Despite this, we've ended up with inappropriate full length motor bearers and almost certainly a way-oversized keel cooling tank that has been badly shoehorned in. It's almost as if the builder forgot about the electric motor and installed engine bearers and a keel cooling tank for a Beta 43 or something, and now expects us to pay for his mistakes. We are livid. But what can we do? We are not prepared to pay the builder extra to rectify his mistakes. But it looks like they have dug their heels in. We are livid. Think I just said this. You get the picture. How much would we have to pay a boatyard (typically) to grind out the keel cooling tank and motor bearers and install more appropriate replacements? £1,000 ? We are tempted to tell the builder to stick it where the sun doesn't shine, accept the offer of a refund of our deposit, and walk away, but then we'd be back to square one and be facing a delay of many months before we could start again. The builder of course will know this and thinks they have us over a barrel. I really do feel quite angry at the moment. Sorry about the length of this post. What would you do?
  2. Try doing it outside on the towpath. You can always brace yourself against the side of the boat. Just make sure the mooring lines are tight.
  3. The builder specialises in bespoke builds. We specified some things from the start but made clear we are new to narrowboating (but not 'boating') and steel boats and have never had a boat built before so there has been some handholding along the way. But we had no input into the keel cooling tank and motor bearers - we are (or were) relying on their skill and judgement. As I said above, an email was sent to the builder last night and we are waiting for a response.
  4. With regard to the queries concerning scale - the photo was taken with a smartphone, which will have picked whatever lens it thought appropriate. In the workshop the proportions of the swim look normal to me, as do the other aft sections of the boat, and the draught, so please assume everything is OK in this area. The back of the workshop where the stern of the boat is was quite dimly lit and we didn't notice the V cut out on the port-side engine/motor bearer, etc until viewing the photos when we were back home. On the upside I'm impressed with the phone's camera in such low light! To my mind, the keel cooling tank has been poorly located and/or poorly sized, necessitating an acutely angled inlet spigot and a deep V cut into the motor bearer. This is shouting poor design and/or workmanship to me. Not happy. An email was sent to the builder last night. We await the response.
  5. The generator will be in the bow. The solar panels will be on the roof. The lithium batteries will be inside, against the aft bulkhead.
  6. The engine is a water cooled electric motor. No comments about the port-side electric motor bearer that's been compromised by the keel cooling tank, or the tank's outlet being at an acute angle to avoid where the motor will be?
  7. Our original build slot was in February, from a reasonably well known builder in the East midlands... After being told we couldn't visit in person due to Covid, out of the blue we were invited along to see progress. This is a photo from Tuesday... Thoughts? Comments?
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  10. Thirteen you say. Unlucky for some. I used to be a bingo caller. Not all of the above is true. When did you last check your nuts? And pipe? How lucky do you feel (punk)?
  11. If we were playing a game of word association I'd say Carbuncle. That's for the front end. For the rear end I'd say Why? The middle bit is... Different, but OK. But not OK enough for me to want to copy it. Still, life would be boring if we all had the same taste in everything.
  12. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  13. Mostly they ride jetskis. When they're not fishing, obviously. Apologies to the considerate jetski jockeys out there. There must be one or two but I haven't met one yet.
  14. * Other sources of steel are available. But my point stands - boatyards (and builders) are only too happy to NOT black baseplates (probably because it's too much like hard work and not profitable enough) so they say it's "not needed" and just do the easy bits (the sides) until such time that overplating is needed and the five figure sum involved makes it worth their effort.
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