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Alastair

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Cambridge
  • Interests
    If numbers matter, I suppose it is kids! 6 including stepchildren.

    I used live on a dutch sailing barge; the boat in my avatar is in Scotland.

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    Technical Author

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  1. I had a 50ft dutch boat with ship's windows. Bloody heavy things (I bought two more to fit to another boat). Lovely bronze frames, glass about 30mm thick. Secure as you like, plus they opened to let the breeze through (or to let you lean out and feed the ducks/swans). Loved that boat.
  2. What Tracy said. If the accumulator was working you would get this pattern: Open tap - water flows. After a delay, pump runs. If tap is only opened slightly, pump will cut out after a short run and water continues to flow. If you open the tap fully, water flows, pump comes on after shorter delay and continues briefly after you turn tap off.
  3. I won't comment on price. However, you say you want to make it more 'open plan, removing cupboards...'. Before you do that, I suggest that you pack up everything you need for a few weeks aboard (I'm guess you aren't intending to live aboard). Clothes, food, tools, bedding, towels, toilet paper, cleaning stuff; everything you would want. Everything. Now put it all away in the boat. If there is spare storage, then think about removing it.
  4. the bit below the compression fittings; is that a sort of filter? If so, I'm very concerned about how close this is to the surface. When moving, there will be a lot of turbulence around this area. You only need a little bit of air sucked into that pipe and the pump can fail to draw. There will then be a cascade of problems; water not being sucked up, impeller running dry, then engine overheating. I agree with the people who say that your through-hull hole needs a proper fitting. For now, I'd suggest filling around the hose with silicone.
  5. That is a change. Back when this hit the news in Australia, they stated that there wasn't an effective treatment (early 80s). Sudden huge shift in general swimming habits. Favoured waterholes closed, people stopped diving in, everyone went to the beach instead.
  6. I was going to make a similar comment. A common failure is the seal on the mud box/filter. It only needs to have a tiny gap letting air in and your water pump will no longer draw water.
  7. why did they need rescuing? Should have left them there to wait for the tide. First time I went sailing in the Humber we ran aground. Boat owner had his arm around new girlfriend and sailed directly towards a buoy, forgetting there was a sandbank in the way. He was so besotted, he couldn't remember the state of the tide; it was rising, so we just had to wait 30min. The Humber is an awkward bit of water.
  8. I'm not going to comment on elements of style. Just want to chime in on the subject of heating. Ive had boats of different colours. By the far the most comfortable one (for living in) had white topsides. The one with dark blue topsides got so hot (in summer) that you'd burn yourself touching it. Dark colours are also colder in winter. They don't just absorb sunlight more effectively, they radiate heat faster than white.
  9. I agree with checking wake. The speed limit is there to keep wear and tear on canal sides down. It is an aspiration, not a requirement. Slow down going past moored boats. Short boats often kick up much more wake than long boats (at the same speed). So they do need to move slower.
  10. Alastair

    Towpath stoppage

    This - and I'm a long-time cycle commuter. The petition calls the towpath a 'safe, fast route'; if anyone is riding fast down a towpath, they need chucking off it. Towpaths are too narrow for riding fast.
  11. I would go for 240AC for nearly everything (not water pumps, as there are good, compact DC pumps). Advantages: Cheap replacements sourceable nearly anywhere. Better quality for a lot of fittings (12v DC fittings are often poundshop quality, particularly lighting). No worries about voltage drop over long cable runs. No worries about voltage fluctuations blowing equipment (12V Battery DC voltage can vary by 3V)
  12. Seriously, you can find outliers for anything. Making a safe gas installation is a lot easier than a full electrical system. That fitter neglected to do one thing; test the gas system with pipes cold. This is much easier to do on a boat (if you use bubble testers) than in household installations. Manometers are really not great. I don't want to encourage anyone who has limited mechanical skill from working on a gas system (getting mechanical joints tight enough but not too tight requires some feeling for the use of spanners). However I'm tired of the demonization of gas. The same people who act terrified of gas are quite happy to get work done on their car by an apprentice who is paid £3.50 ph; then get in that car and drive at 70mph on the motorway. Car brakes, steering, etc are a lot more complicated than a boat gas system!
  13. 1) You need a lot of gas to leak to get the concentrations required for ignition. 2) The comparison with a surgeon is apt; if surgeons were prone to slipping and accidentally cutting patient's throats. 3) Checking joints are gas-tight is part of completing an installation. A surgeon who forgot to sew up a patient would very quickly lose their licence.
  14. You get a *competent* person to do the work. Doesn't have to be a time-served gas fitter. I redid the gas installations on 3 boats, all of them passed BSS first time with a very pedantic surveyor. They exceeded BSS requirements, because I wanted safe installations.
  15. Most accumulators have a bike-pump connector, sometimes this is under a plastic screw-on shield.
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