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nicknorman last won the day on September 23

nicknorman had the most liked content!


Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    Electronics, gliding, motorbikes
  • Occupation
    helicopter pilot - retired
  • Boat Name
  • Boat Location
    Fazeley Mill Marina, Tamworth

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Community Answers

  1. Amazing how 1 wind up merchant can spawn 90 odd posts!
  2. Very neat. Certainly solves the problem! Does it run on raw sea water, or via a heat exchanger? Raw water on canal boats can be problematic due to the silt, weed and other debris.
  3. Ok, I think that just factory-resets the remote control panel, I don’t think it affects the actual Combi. On page 13 of the MICC manual you linked to, para 4.4 talks about the Mass Combi setting which defaults to Off (after a factory reset). I would follow those instructions to turn on Mass Combi mode.
  4. I’d try disconnecting the remote control panel, see if that helps Also and separately you might want to change the setting of DIP switch B 7 which controls the interactions between the Combi and the remote. Also of course check that there is 12v or so at the Combi main terminals. How did you do the “factory reset”, and why?
  5. Great lighting though, that is worth £50k on its own. Maybe.
  6. I didn’t for 2 reasons, firstly there were no witnesses so his word against mine, and no visible wound. Secondly I probably provoked him a bit by “getting in his face” with a camera trying to take his picture whilst he was determined I wouldn’t. And thirdly to be fair I don’t think it was entirely intentional, more like a “swatting away a fly” sort of action whilst he obviously wasn’t looking in my direction (didn’t want me to get his face on camera. Ok 3 reasons. But obviously I reported it to CRT, the regional manager Adnan Saif (who has now departed CRT for some unrelated reason)
  7. It’s a good question, CRT don’t make it easy to complain. I’ve gone regional and used “enquiries.<region>@canalrivertrust.org.uk, for example enquiries.southeast@canalrivertrust.org. But first you have to work out which region it is. In your case I think it’s walesandsw . Or you just phone them and ask. In the past I’ve emailed CRT’s head of volunteering Christine Mellor but she isn’t interested in complaints which tells you why there is a problem. By the way, I do sympathise. It’s bad enough dealing with rogue volockies when there are 2 of us, much worse if you are single handed.
  8. Did you report it all, especially being held against your will in a lock? If you didn’t, it will continue to happen.
  9. sorry for not being clear but this was not one incident, this was several. Hatton, Jeff got publicly shouted at (in front of a large group of gongoozlers) for opening a second bottom paddle when a boat was descending (we were waiting to go up). Apparently opening a second paddle is “very dangerous”. Or maybe that is only when going uphill! The volockie was fairly new and confused about going uphill vs downhill. Boater was quite happy with both bottom paddles, as one would be. Wilmcote, boat coming up 2 locks away, turning the lock meant there would be no delay to the ascending boat and lots of water running through the bywashes, volockie shouting at me from the next lock, I ignored him, closed the bottom gates and only just got the top paddle open before he tried to reopen the bottom gate, then came up and shouted at me in my face. I told him he wasn’t in charge. He wasn’t wearing a name badge and refused to give his name. Needless to say we opened the bottom gates just as the ascending boat opened the top gates so no one was in any way delayed. Afterwards I attempted to take his photo to make a complaint but he wasn’t having it and lashed out with his windlass, fortunately only hitting me on the shoulder - it would have been my face if I was shorter. Wigan, going up, entering some lock 1/2 way up in parallel with another boat as we’d done for all the previous lock, 5 yards to go volockie shouts STOP from above which caused the other guy to break off and general mayhem ensued. Just because the gate was a bit reluctant to close if it was fully opened, AND the idiot was standing between the balance beam and the edge. I expressed my displeasure and they sulked, then deliberately kept us waiting 20 mins in the top lock in the pouring rain (top gates were padlocked). Then abused me on their “Wigan Flight Crew” Facebook group and refused to allow me to join it to put my perspective. Atherstone lock 2 (from the top) physically sat on the balance beam adjacent to the bottom gate paddle so I couldn’t operate it, micromanaging some invented water-saving strategy whereby only opening 1 paddle saved water. Leeds and Liverpool manned staircase (not the 5, just 3) volockie objecting to me operating any of the paddles and spent about 10 mins micromanaging the water level in the middle lock before he would open the top to middle paddles. He had already made us wait 15 mins in case another boat turned up before he would even let us into the lock. He had his unqualified and untrained nephew helping. When I started to get a bit irritated by the delays he threatened to padlock the flight and not let us through. Fortunately at that point the proper lockie turned up and sanity was restored. Then were was the guy who started shouting at Jeff as to how to drive the boat entering an intermediate Foxton lock when the lower gate swung open just as I opened the paddle above, he wanted Jeff to put the boat in neutral which would have resulted in the surge of water (unreflected by the now open gate) ramming the back of the boat into the remaining closed gate. When Jeff complained about the back seat driving the volockie went off in a big sulk. Probably some more I can’t think of, certainly many instances of back seat driving and pointless unwelcome “advice” and many, many instances of the volockie just presuming he is going to operate the lock, and doing so without asking. Oh and there was the volockie at Sawley standing at the console on which there is a very large sign saying “boats must be roped” or words to that effect, opening the top paddles before I could get the stern rope attached. And just stupid little irritations like bottom of Hillmorton, boat exiting 1/2 way out of the lock as we approach, volockie finds it necessary to wave frantically at us to indicate we should approach the empty lock that was just being vacated. Stating the bleeding obvious, as I would call it. And another occasion where the volockie told Jeff to tell me that I shouldn’t hover mid channel between middle and bottom lock because I might get blown into the offside. Admittedly he didn’t know I was a helicopter pilot and therefore quite good at hovering. Of course we have had plenty of lovely, chatty friendly volockies, but the point is you don’t know what you are going to get until it happens, which is why we’ve now decided always to say “we prefer to work the locks ourselves,” on first contact.
  10. Another way of looking at it is that initially I didn’t have an anti-volockie attitude. That attitude has developed following several incidents where volockie presence has created problems, mostly when they tried to take control, shouted at Jeff when he had done nothing wrong (playing to the crowd of gongoozlers to make himself look important), shouted in my face when I turned a lock in a perfectly reasonable way, hit me with a windlass, physically blocked me from operating a paddle in the normal way, threatened to padlock the lock so we couldn’t proceed and many more minor things. So you are right, I do have an anti-volockie attitude but it is a learnt attitude, not an innate one.
  11. But if they always ask, neither of those two scenarios would exist. It would be "would you like some help with the lock" and our answer would be "no thank you". But unfortunately that conversation never starts. Well not in our experience of the Midlands anyway. Can't say I've done Hanwell since they started. Anyway it is not about being ignorant or not, it is simply that we like working locks and enjoy our little "system" for doing it efficiently, and when someone else interferes it is an irritation, when someone else who thinks they are in some position of authority closely monitors what you are doing with the hope of being able to intervene it is an irritation. Those irritations didn't exist until the advent of volockies. Not that we mind at all when that other person is another boater because there is never (or very rarely) an attempt to tell you how you should be doing it. But in our experience if you accept help from a Volockie, all too often they can't resist trying to back seat drive and micro-manage you. Of course that is only some, by no means all. But until it happens you don't know if it is going to happen and that causes stress. You presume that we would be rude to a volockie on first contact, but since you have no idea how we actually behave it is just your prejudice showing through. I can assure you we are always polite on first contact and slightly apologetic that we want to work the lock ourselves and deprive them of the pleasure. That is, if first contact happens before they start operating the lock, which sometimes isn't the case.
  12. They don’t. We did, several times. They still don’t.
  13. I think your perception of reality is like your trombone slide. It stretches more than is reasonable! The difference between us helping other boats through locks vs volockies is many fold: 1/ We ask if the boaters would like assistance and we adjust our behaviour according to their nature. When we fill locks for ourselves we just go “FULL PADDLES and don’t spare the horses” but of course for mr/mrs timid boater we go “Oh would you like 1 click or 2 on this one ground paddle? You can’t be too careful!” and all points in between. 2/ we avoid giving them the benefit of our vast knowledge (aka 2 day course if we were volockies) in the form of back seat driving tips. 3/ We do actually know what we are doing. 4/ We engage in pleasant chit chat, as opposed to taciturn grumping and grey-beard-mumbling without eye contact. But yes you are right, apart from that there is very little difference.
  14. I am not entirely sure that last bit is true, but it’s not relevant to my point, which was that I don’t understand why people would go boating on canals but want other people to work the locks for them. I am of course not denying that they exist - they most certainly do, and plenty of them - I’m merely saying the I don’t understand it.
  15. Very nice. What I don’t understand is why the chap bothers to cruise his boat if he prefers other people to do the locks for him. Maybe he is heading for the Ashby where he won’t have to do them any more?
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