Jump to content
Strawberry Orange Banana Lime Leaf Slate Sky Blueberry Grape Watermelon Chocolate Marble
Strawberry Orange Banana Lime Leaf Slate Sky Blueberry Grape Watermelon Chocolate Marble

Ian Mac

  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

83 Neutral

1 Follower

About Ian Mac

  • Birthday June 9

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    All things transport related, Computers, Farming.

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    Retired Professional Engineer
  • Boat Name
  • Boat Location
    Leigh Lancs

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. Hi All need your help! Its a relatively easy task. First, some nearly really good news A developer is proposing to restore the 1936 breach above Prestolee Locks at Nob End, Little Lever, Bolton. Unfortunately the plan is only to restore it for narrow boats, even though the M&BB is a broad waterway, and the new locks in Salford off the Irwell have been created as broad locks :) I would be good if you could all to write to Bolton Council and object to the restoration plans for the 1936 breach above Prestolee Locks at Nob End Bolton and that the restoration should be to the original gauge of the canal of 14ft 2inches or 4.32m in modern speak. There are two parts which matter to the canal, first is the new bridge to access the Creams site, this is proposed to have a 2m towpath and a 3m channel. The second part is the restoration of the breach its self, where again only a 3m channel is proposed. I believe we should object to both, on the grounds it will stop wide beam boats reaching Bury when the restoration is completed. One can object online at https://www.planningpa.bolton.gov.uk/online-applications-17/search.do?action=simple&searchType=Application with the reference no. is 09775/20 Unfortunately they do not make it very simple!!! One has to create a login. Go to the link above, put the reference 09775/20 into the simple search box at the bottom, and click search, this should bring up the Planning » Application Summary page for the ERECTION OF 274 DWELLINGS ON TWO SITES Then click the comments tab, then click login and comment, you have to create a login identity, before you can comment, and that process sends you a verification email - uhhh! Once you have leapt these hurdles, the site has a timeout, so it is better to create your comment elsewhere and copy and past it in. Oh and you only have 2000 chars to play with! But you can repeat the process if you want more space. The M&BB Canal Soc think that getting a 3m channel is the best they can get, and want to go with this. I believe otherwise and that we should all push the council, so that Bury is not excluded from getting history wide beams back, because of the short-sightedness of Bolton Council. The bridge is not a major problem as the designed can be modified I believe with a floating/removable towpath which can be pulled out of the way to allow wide beam boats to get through it, and on to Bury. This should enable the developer to not have to build a huge spanning bridge over the canal, which would cost significantly more, I'm guessing. The bridge design can be modified so that it does not have a towpath, it would be cheaper to build for the developer and either the developer could provide or C&RT or the M&BB Canal Soc could raise the money for a floating towpath, as the final solution. In the mean time access could be via paths going up to the road from either side., which should be provided so that the local residents have easy access to the canal. The floating towpath could be constructed of standard narrow canal boat hulls in principle with support legs, a walking deck and hand rails, giving an approximate 2m width of path through the bridge. By definition two narrowboats will fit through a 5m gap! The termination of the towpath at the bridge abutments would have to be redesigned so that it links to the floating towpath. Please see the Rochdale Canal passage under the M62 at Castleton, for an example of how this can be done. The length through the breach can also be re-organized by doing two straight sections of 4.32m min width we really can keep it that tight, and why not? That is what the locks are. This is only another 4ft 8inches on the currently proposed 2.92m channel. Then at the intersection of the two straight lengths a rotating area can be provided which would allow full length maximum beam boats to realign for the other straight section and then carry on. They would not be able to simply sail through, but would need to be guided through as at locks, but they would get through, a slight increase of another 100mm would help but is not totally necessary. please see brown markup on attached plan. The realignment area can either be at the front (towpath side) or at the back away from the towpath. I personally think at the towpath side is best and a curve can be used. The architects would need to do the detail but its not far away from what is being proposed. They could gain some of this extra 1.4m by pushing the northern wall back into the bank a little further. By totally removing the old offside wall. They could also shrink the towpath a bit and make the apron that supports it slightly wider, and hey presto we are there. The area for the twist to realign the boat will be at the back of the breach area and so would not cause significant addition loading on the land slip area, and would need to be approximately another 3.3m wide at the apex of the two offside lines, I calculate. It is easy to fix and not that much more expensive. It may also be possible for volunteer labour to help. please see the Granthan canal and the Lichfield canal restorations, I for one would be keen to help. Its not ideal, however it would work. It means that the costs are not running out of hand, and it's a workable solution for the developer. Below I have added an image showing roughly how I think a 4.32m channel could be achieved through the breach area, shown in brown.
  2. You can wind easily wind at Salterhebble at the top lock, always good to back into the lock and take a picture and ask where that is. You can also wind a 72ft boat at Dry dock and at the very end of the Halifax Arm. Enable one to go to the Navigation in Sowerby Bridge moor conviently
  3. What I know, It is suspected that lock 46 has a wooden floor, something relativly common on the older Rochdale locks - those built under the original 1796 act. locks 1- 50 If this is the case it may well have failed spectactuarly like lock 49 had, in which case they may have to do a full replace, they will not know until at the earlest Friday 24July. Either way it will not be a super quick stoppage unfortunatley. Very few boats have used the Manchester 18 this year! They had very bad troubles with the local scrots draining the flight in Newton Heath during lock down, this is why the canal was locked at night. It does not appear to have improved The summer holidays have started, however scrots do not like mornings in general. Lack of use has caused these problems. The natives where quite friendly last year, especially if you talked nicely to them. Doing the Manchester 18 in the rain is always better. Most of the volunteers have not yet been inducted back in this area of the NW for some reason unknow to me! The volunteers lock keepers are expecting to be back very soon! However there are no boats! To see if a volunteer is available use the standard CRT contact number 03030 404040 at least 24hrs before, which means at least 2 days before you want to travel. Very few of the volunteers are available at weekends, normally none! If a voluteer lock keeper is available, the process is that you will be contacted with the volunteers contact details, so you can organise the passage. Oh and lastly there is still no full escape into Yorkshire due to the C&H being shut at Figure of Three Locks just before Wakefield, so the only route out is back to Lancashire via the HVNC. -- Cheers Ian Mac
  4. That is interesting as our surveyor - god rest his sole, made us fit a total isolation switch, as well as a swich which turns of everything but those you mention, which we use when we leave the boat.
  5. Having half read this and other threads on solar panels, it has dawned on me that there is a contratiction in requirements. The BSS requires a battery isolation swicth which totally isolates the batteries. In its self this is a good thing, however there are known problems. If one just isolates the batteries and the engine is running, then the alternator blows up, it would also appear your solar controller also blows up for the same reason. Some battery isolating switches come with a extra pair of contacts which break before battery isolation, this is to turn the alternator off first, It would appear to be a good idea to have such a switch when you have solar panels too. A switch like this will do the job. - https://www.autoelectricsupplies.co.uk/product/139/category/30
  6. Listing is an interesting problem! The one example I am aware of is lock 15 on the Ashton Canal which is listed, unfortunately this is as restored in 1974, and not as original, 1956 would have been great! So the silly hydraulic paddle gear and the metal balance beam without a strapping post had to be restored. I meet the guy enforcing this, from the council, and played hell with him, and said it was a total mockery of history, his reply was that all he has to go on is the listing statement, and pictures which accompany it. If we want to challenge this we have to go though a very long formal process. This is basically to stop developers taking the piss from the system.
  7. Unfortunately I don't have access to the Cyril Tongue and Groove photo Archive, however I was there! I have just been through my pictures and I cant find one of the locks as restored then. But I do know what it was like in the late 1960's. Marple locks where fairly sophisticated in there original design. The bottom eight locks were restored to full working order by The Peak Forest Canal Society in the late 60's early 70's including making all the bottom paddle gearing work. This was done under the guidances of Cyril Tonge and Groove. His initials being carved into all the new woodwork, which was installed, or that of PFCS in the same sort of oval shape. The locks all had weir bypasses, such that the locks would fill with water before the main by-washes on the pound came into operation. Basically keep as much water uphill as possible, so each lock has a small weir built into the head apron on the offside and another built into the tail behind the bottom offside gate. When the pound filled the first thing that then happens is the lock fills, to stop this flooding there is a second weir at the tail. The paddle gearing. The top of the locks have basically remained unaltered except that the gate paddles are marginally smaller and have single reduction gearing now, rather than the original (pre restoration in 1972-4). There was a large ground paddle with a single wooden post in the forebay on the line side and then there were two danny paddles as they were know in the gates one on either side with two racks connected to one drive shaft, again operated from the line side. I can't remember if they all had two paddles or some had just the one paddle like the modern gates. The ground paddle waters went down a vertical culvert which then twisted and joined the shaft from the weir on the opposite side and exited into the chamber in the middle of the head, about 1 foot off the chamber floor. The culverts where about 2ft in diameter. These have not altered. The chamber floors where all brick except where the bottom cills were, where the floor may be wooden depending on how tight the ground was, ie where the surrounding water table level was normally above the level of the canal water, or maybe a stone floor. The main chamber floor was a brick invert at about a 10ft radius, and at the head of the lock it was all rounded up like quarter of a ball. The sequence of operation was draw about 1/3 of a top ground paddle draw the boat onto the cill, fully raise the ground paddle fully, start to raise the danny paddles, as the risk of flooding the boat passed, fully raise the Dannies fully. Lock levels open the gate, and off you go. The Bottom of the lock had two wooden posts mounted in the recess of the lineside bottom gate. These were bolted to the wall each post had two bolts. These were connected to two paddles mounted in the face of the lineside gate recess, This was an arch construct about 4ft high and 4ft wide, it was constructed of wooden boarding with a centralish pillar, this chamber connected onto a culvert behind which exited into the tail of the lock below the tail bridge, opposite the exit for the weir culvert. On the wooden boarding where two iron paddle frames one about 18inches wide and about 2ft 6inches high the other was about 9inches wide and the same height. In the offline side tail gale was a large gate paddle about 3ft square. At the top of the connecting rods mounted on the appropriate posts was the paddle gearing. The gearing for the narrow paddle was double reduction, the next post had single gear reduction - same as the top ground paddle, then the gate paddle which was on the offline side gate was on a direct drive the same as the Danny paddles at the top. The sequence of operation to empty the lock was to open the double reduction paddle first, then the single reduction and then walk round and open the gate paddle, All of which was done in the time it took, one person to operate them. It was wonderful to operate and was a sad loss, as children rather than very fit butch people could operate the locks. When leaving, at most of them, there was a wooden landing platform on the offside, which was about 3ft wide and 6ft long, it was reached by a set of steps from just beyond the far side of the tail bridge. When the canal was restored in 1972-4 the decision was taken by BW that it was all too complicated for the "modern" boater to cope with and it was a maintenance nightmare, due to leakage into the bottom culverts, so the culverts where blocked off at both ends, and are probably full of concrete grout, and they installed two middling size gate paddle in the bottom gates, with single reduction gearing. However as the first foot was removed originally by the small paddle being opened, it made cracking Marple bottom paddles really hard, as it is too this day I have suggested on more than one occasion it would be a really good project for volunteers to do is to restore the bottom ground paddles. However C&RT have not seen that this is an excellent idea YET!
  8. I found it fascinating that the Tipton green canal was built first and went down the hill further that it did by 1900, when the last few locks had become disused. and the communication link had been built. Did they have to be abandoned back then or not? Or are they still legally open? An interesting research project for those that like going to Kew. I also became intreged by the arm which went off just below the mainline as it too appeared to have locks on it in once source I skimmed by.
  9. The whole point as I see the BCN challenge (both virtual and real) from the point of view of the organisers is two fold. 1) it is to get the canals used that is why the bonus scheme exists so that the less used canals give you more points, 2) to prove to other boaters that actually the BCN is somewhere well worth exploring, and that it is as safe if not safer than any other place on the cut. To achieve these aims they have to encourage a wide range of people to join in. There are those that attend to win. There are those that are there for the Beer, and other for the camaraderie or some both. There are those that attend because its a fun, and/or a personal challenge, and others who do it because they see it as the right things to do and want to uphold the organisers aims. I fall into this later category, well I would have to say that, using one of the deepest draught boats to use the BCN, 2.5mph is so much faster that my wildest dreams when planning normally, 1mph for the Daw end is what I use. So this challenge has been no different than any of the other challenges I have attended, in the past, I did not do it to win, but to travel canals I wanted to bag. I failed to touch the Lichfield and Hatherton, because hopefully within my lifetime I will be able to do these for real It has been illuminating just how the competitive ones go about winning. Personally I think the time has come to change how the points are now distributed, rather than a fixed system which definitely favours the NE segment, and doing lots of locks, I would make it a lot harder, I would have satellite tracing in real time, visible to all, and points for being the furthest away from other competitors, this would mean that the whole system would be more used. How is that for a radical idea? In all the times I have done the challenge this is only the second time I have reached the end point, normally we are stuck with a bladeful somewhere near Walsall or some such place Again I would like to thank those that put this together and all those others over the years that have done the real comp, it is not easy and it can seem to be thankless, but you are achieving your aims, I think so please carry on .
  10. One thing this virtual challenge has really brought home to me is just how the scenery has changed, even in the last 50 years. It has gone from sparse barren industrial with open panoramic views across the area, to tree enclosed urban housing,or white boxes, in lots and lots of places, with hedges and trees everywhere. The Canals have become very green corridors. It is now so very very different, even from when I was a lad, and going back 100 and 200 years it is amazing what the differences are. Contrast and compare!
  11. I'm well impressed with a score of over 500 well done Team Indigo Dream 🥇 And well done to the other 5 teams which beat us and to all the other teams for being part of the great event. I for one have learnt a lot and I will be sending a donation in too The BCNS do not have a clickable link where you can donate but you can do so via online banking by using these details: BCN Society Barclays Bank Sort Code 20-84-13 Account Number 60176419 Also this forum does not run on fresh air and could do with some help too. If you wish to donate to the forum you can do so here: https://www.canalworld.net/forums/index.php?/store/category/6-make-a-donation-to-canal-world/
  12. Total tallies for NB StyxL are we covered 80.7 Miles and operated 86 Locks
  13. Its a good job they brought all that Mild
  14. So back to the real world of "Goat Zooming" VID-20200509-WA0004.mp4 For more details see and booking https://www.cronkshawfoldfarm.co.uk/goatsonzoom-1 also read https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/no-kidding-farmer-hiring-out-18183020
  15. Well its been hard work and fun we have all learnt a lot. I'm going to have a beer or three now, and I would like to thank my crew, @captain birdseye Richard Nichols and Andy Cutting for their help and moral support, Its been fun. just got to work out how to get the Boat and Hos' home now
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.