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Tom and Bex

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About Tom and Bex

  • Birthday 10/31/1975

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  • Occupation
    Emergency Care Assistant
  • Boat Name
    Diesel & Dust
  • Boat Location

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  1. Even single handed you'll be miles quicker on all those locks than canalplan's default settings. In fact I think it would be difficult to work slowly enough to get even close to the default on those locks.
  2. Another option to consider if you haven't done it before is the Titford canal for a trip round the pools. Could come back via Brades (the only staircase on the BCN). Should be doable in the time you have. Locks on the Titford are some of the fastest I've worked and very easy single handed.
  3. I would strongly advise not to go for the cheap Impax generator from screwfix. We took ours back 3 times under the 1 year guarantee - the 3rd time we got a refund and put the money towards a Kipor instead that so far has proved much more reliable. The cheap Impax generator would start tripping into overload with less and less power being used, getting worse and worse until it would not power anything. I suspect it was the very cheap Chinese electronics failing, the actual engine continuing to start and run very well. As to powering your 30a charger from a 700w generator, while in theory it should work, it may well not in practice. We find our that while our 1kw generator will just about run our Sterling pro charge ultra 40a charger, it will trip our generator if starting charger at full power. The only way around this is to start it at 75% and switch to 100% whilst charger is running. Unfortunately this is not an easy thing to do on the Sterling, involving holding buttons down and multiple button presses in conjunction with the manual! Having said all that, none of it is really relevant to us now, and we only charge our lithium batteries with main engine or solar. We find this much more convenient than messing with generator and petrol, but does depend on what engine you have.
  4. That's definitely our experience, although charging at a much higher voltage (15v) does seem to mitigate that to some degree. We only got just over a year out of our last set, hence the decision to go lithium. There is plenty of real life experience of these batteries in sea going boats in the states, and experience points to life expectancy of 10yrs plus and 5000+ cycles in low charge and discharge usage. I agree they're not for everyone though and over charge or discharge will kill them quicker than lead acid! Not sure on make - just an old 10a car charger with transformer and no fancy controls! Voltage keeps rising slowly as current falls so ideal for equalization etc.
  5. We found our knackered sealed batteries regained some capacity and we got another winter out of them by charging to 16.5v using an old style car charger, and upping our regular charging voltage to 15v (+temp compensation). You could hear the batteries bubbling at 16.5v (unsurprisingly!) but not when charged at 15v. I strongly believe that for our usage, the added calcium in modern batteries, makes sealed batteries have a very short life if using recommended charging voltages. They certainly appear to work better charged at much higher voltages, and when I removed the cover on one before scraping it I found the level to be absolutely fine.
  6. Huge thanks to Richard and Sue for taking on the organising and for getting the results out so fast. I know it was hard for them not to be taking part this year Very pleased with our 3rd place considering the only planning I did was Thursday night! I was thinking 6th would have been a good result. Highlights of the challenge for us were the many positive comments we recieved on the Walsall Canal with several locals thinking we were lost as they never see any boats! We felt the Walsall canal was better this year than previously, yes it is shallow and lots of rubbish, but generally felt the rubbish was less than previous years. Nice to meet other participants again and Lily particularly liked playing with Bob at the pub until she finally ran out of energy!
  7. We have some if you still need when we get there. Should be at the finish in about 10 to 15 minutes.
  8. Just back from Ma Pardoes and takeaway? Guess it's time to get some sleep before the big day? Good luck to all the participants and hope to see you around over the weekend.
  9. All out now, fire brigade just clearing up.
  10. Having overnighted in Birmingham centre, we're off to hawne basin to fill up with diesel and gas before heading to our start location. If you pass us having run out of diesel before hawne basin please take pity on us and don't laugh too much!
  11. Thanks for the info and pics. Great to see Firepool lock getting some use! Pass on my best wishes to them. Looks like it's worth a visit when next in Somerset. Have many happy memories of boating on the B&T in various forms of boat, and have done the full length many times. Grew up in Creech St. Michael and helped crew the various IWA boats before full opening, and again at Maunsel lock for a while.
  12. Shouldn't those responsibilities have been clearly defined at the point of transfer? Do CRT have right of free use of the water, or do they pay for the water they take from there? If free then surely there is no incentive on Staffordshire council to repair the valve!
  13. Out of interest, why is there no supply from Chasewater? I know they sold it several years back, and remember it being drained for work to the dam, but thought CRT kept the rights to water from there? If so why can't they exercise that right now instead of relying on a single pump to maintain levels? Either way let's hope the pump installation goes well, and they soon get Bradley back up to full capacity!
  14. I had no idea this was there! When did they open? About time there were these facilities to promote use of a very underused canal. I wish them well and hope they make the business a great success.
  15. The alarm on ours works well. Not the loudest, but definitely audible. Not upgraded any firmware though, and not sure what version it's running? I can confirm that the internal alarm buzzer on ours sounds when the display shows alarm status.
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