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DaveP

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Somewhere...
  • Interests
    Motorcycling
    General geekery
    Minimum money; maximum life

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    When I get round to it
  • Boat Name
    Freespirit Rising
  • Boat Location
    There's a plan, y'see...

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  1. Within their rights to withdraw the service - I agree, but to do so without notice or publicity is a bit off. They didn't even bother telling CRT - who would have been able to let boaters in the area know, rather than make a wasted journey to the pontoon and back....
  2. Limehouse Marina facilities were open to all. Then BWML was sold off. There was no announcement, just a refusal to service. COVID given as an excuse. Having spoken to a fair few of the boaters when they did visit, this is the case - one partner owns the boat, the other lives on the hard. Lockdown kept them both on land. In several instances, because we were not near a pumpout and their tank was brimming.... As to those who never visited - I don't know. Don't forget, the demographic of London boating is radically different to the rest of the country - there are a lot more young people....
  3. I've boated regularly through London for the last three years (three - six months at a time). The only area in which I haven't been able to moor against the towpath at the first time of looking is Camden to Islington tunnel - twice in five passages... In terms of passing through the centre of town, the problem is Regents Park - there are no rings or moorings available from Lisson Grove to Camden, and with only 4 berths available above Camden locks, it makes for a minimum of 3 hours on the water before any mooring becomes possible. The high voltage lines under the towpath are now decommissioned, so the work to remove them gives an ideal opportunity to create another mile or so of moorings (~160). But see below! There _are_ many boats on the canals there; the real issue is the lack of sanitary facilities - not helped by Limehouse Marina preventing non-residents from using theirs this year. There are no facilities between Little Venice at Paddington and St Pancras. Don't even ask about pumpouts... In my two month lock-down sojourn in Mile End it was clear that only about 25% of boats were lived on, the rest were ghost boats (with about 1 in 3 being visited occasionally, and the rest not at all in that time). So much for boaters - what about other stakeholders? Anglers - seen plenty on the Paddington Arm, Regents (East of Hackney) and Lee. Again, Regents Park is a ghost town. Walkers, Joggers, Cyclists - everywhere, all the time, except on the Lee north of the Olympic Park. But that's where the muggers take over.... Local residents - I don't know. Presumably they also form the previous category. So what to do? Create more and better sanitary facilities, enforce movement and licensing (and make sure new owners get the rules). Make sure that problems are dealt with and not left to fester by not talking to local councils or neighbours. I was there when the idiot burned whatever it was below the St Mary's Hospital air intakes - all of us dobbed the twat in to CRT, but we still lost those four spots in the basin. In the end though, I suspect CRT will create zones to be moved through (with lots of lovely new logo'd signs in plastic zip-tied to random railings) and then fail to enforce them on a timescale of 'have we got a decade-long grant from DEFRA yet?'
  4. Nothing's changed in relation to incorporating the Stroudwater and the Thames & Severn into the journey....
  5. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  6. DaveP

    Snob boaters

    Me! Me! Me! I self-identify as a London Boater, and I'm on the loose in the Home Counties ATM. Where can I meet said snobby? Love and peace, innit bruv.
  7. Indeed so; I still have £4 credit on mine and it worked in Hythe Bridge the other year. I am planning on making a booking on the Boris moorings for a week in January....
  8. Maybe electric narrowboats are almost here.... New kit costs: 15kw electric motor kit - 3k, 15kw batteries - 6.5k, 3kw panels (using about 12m of cabin top) - 2.5k. Total 12k. Panels will produce 2kwh in the depths of winter, allowing a 30min cruise each day, and 1kwh for living. The batteries provide a week-long backup in the event of total panel failure to generate.... This means that you still need a solid-fuel stove and alternative cooking and water-heating (gas) arrangements - or a back boiler etc. [Living aboard, I reckon I use 3.5kWh of gas/day, and 48kWh of coal/stove /day when running 24-7]. A new diesel costs about 6k. I'm presuming they're about the same cost to fit into the boat. But then the diesel has running costs(say 400/yr), whilst the electric gets a 25% licence discount from CRT(say 200/yr). So the break-even point comes after about 10-12 years. It is the winter heating that's the elephant - needing a 2kw continuous feed....
  9. It's happening. Whole load of closures this and next month to install bollards from York Way to City Road lock. And then the moorings become bookable only, and only single mooring, and only for one week. If you're a cc'er you can't get an online account to use the bollards....
  10. Just a point on the last item. _Don't_ use the fridge. Each time you use it, a huge amount of power will be taken to get it down to operational temperature (disregard in the case of using a shoreline to do this).
  11. I've moved onto LiFePO4 batteries which are a completely different ballgame, but from my experiences with lead-acids; don't discharge below 50% (as you've already said), recharge to 100% asap after discharge. They will wear out and should be considered consumables. Don't buy expensive ones until you've wrecked at least one set of cheapo's and have feeling for how they behave. The problem being that the recharging current the batteries will accept reduces approximately proportionally to their current state of charge (ie the closer you get to recharging them, the less input they'll take). This means that running the engine to get them from 90% to 95% will take the same time as from 80% to 90%. This means you're wasting diesel putting small currents in. Solar though, will just sit there putting small charges in until you lose the light. As to the panel from your screenshot - that's all marketing bollocks. Look at; the efficíency (gives you power per area of panel), max voltages and currents ( to match different panels, and the controller), thickness and weight (for handling them). Otherwise within a panel format, they're all alike. Given the above, it's considered reasonable to carry a 2-day reserve of power ( don't forget that this can include going on a restricted diet for day 2!) and you need to be able to recharge them in the hours between returning to the boat and 8pm with the engine. If you've got access to shorepower, use that; it will be an order of magnitude cheaper, quieter, and mechanically easier. My solution over the last couple of years was 400ah (Pb) batteries, 1200w of solar, and fridge off between November and March. I'm looking forward to see how the lithiums perform in the coming winter....
  12. You've got several different ways of providing power, so thought needs to be given to a) Providing power that's going to be used now - eg for large loads such as a washing machine, or other electric heating apparatus b) Providing power to be consumed later (and before the next opportunity to generate more) The former is what the power pack is good for, the latter is for the charger and solar installation. So, how much of the 80Ah is sporadic loads like a washing machine over which you have the choice of when to run it, and how much is continuous load such as refrigeration, pumps and the like (plus entertainment and communications like radio, internet & TV, which although under your control can't realistically be time-shifted) 80Ah is near enough 1kWh. To provide this for the warmer half of the year will require around 500w of solar panels, for the shoulder months (Feb, Oct) around 900w, and in the depths of Winter around 1600w. This is all predicated on the panels being flat; if you are able to tilt them the winter requirement could be cut by 30%. However, with only 400Ah of batteries you don't have much redundancy to cope with more than one dull, drizzly, damp, grey, overcast day in a row. The number and type of panel is going to be a function of how much of your roof you want for other purposes such as storage and walking on (If you're not single-handing there isn't much need for the cabin top to be a walkable area). Flexible ones don't have a great reputation for longevity or robustness, and can't be tilted. Flat panels need housing and apparatus to be able to tilt. But 700w of flat panels is only 4.5m2 these days....
  13. These days at 0300, normally 13.25v with 4-12w being drawn. (LiFePO4's ~80%). By 0800 they're picking up 'cos the solar's kicking in....
  14. Or use an app on your phone (assuming a smart, gps-enabled one) - i use https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=uk.co.crazyhatter.aerialalign on my android phone.
  15. Goods Diesel Pumps in Hommerton. Yep, happy with their work and worth! http://goodsdieselpumpsltd.yolasite.com/
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