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GRLMK38

Bascote Staircase GU Closed

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29 minutes ago, GRLMK38 said:

The pound above the staircase was at least 12in below normal. That may have contributed to the problem.

That can sometimes have an effect if the pound below is also low. But in this case the top chamber wasn't filled.

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1 hour ago, Fate said:

The cill fender was ripped off and the concrete damaged by a boat powering over it. The lock had not been operated correctly, and there was only 1/4 of the correct amount of water between the chambers.

There are well posted instructions for this lock, which are largely ignored - as they were in this case.

We hit the cill in France when the lock keeper waved us through with insufficient water in the locks

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2 hours ago, Fate said:

The cill fender was ripped off and the concrete damaged by a boat powering over it. The lock had not been operated correctly, and there was only 1/4 of the correct amount of water between the chambers.

There are well posted instructions for this lock, which are largely ignored - as they were in this case.

So this was a boat going up?

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It would be good to understand the direction of travel of the boat, if it was going up and the top pound was very low then it could be possible that there wasn't enough water in the top lock to sufficiently raise the boat in the lock to clear the intermediate cill.

I don't always fill the top lock before opening the middle paddles on a staircase, I'll just watch the levels and decide when to stop letting water in the top. I've never hit a cill though.

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On 22/06/2019 at 21:17, GRLMK38 said:

The Bascote Staircase (Locks 14/15) on the GU is closed due to a broken cill until further notice.  The metal plate that seals the centre gate (towpath side) has detached and is stopping the gate from closing.

 

There are currently 6 boats below the locks.  The local lock keeper has called "somebody" and I have called the CRT Emergency Number.  Seven hours after the event I am still waiting to hear from a Duty Manager.

 

By "lock keeper" do you mean the guy who lives in the house by the locks, as I seem to recall the cottage was sold off long ago, last time I went through (which was admittedly some years ago) whoever was in residence was clearly not the lock keeper although they gave freely of their advice - see my last paragraph below

 

17 hours ago, Mike Adams said:

I came across some fat boats being built or fitted out in the midlands recently that had a hull draught of about 20 inches but then to accommodate a larger propeller there was a vertical step down to the skeg of about 6 inches to hold the base of the rudder. The prop shaft was then below the centre height of the swim. As these boats probably weigh in excess of 20 tons anyone taking the boat from a low pound into a lock would rip the cill right off and wouldn't know about until it was too late. On the one I saw out of the water there was not any attempt at a lead in to the skeg.

 

It's this sort of thing that makes on wonder whether CRT should have the power to enforce some kind of construction and use regulations over and above BSS - I always shy away from the idea but clearly some boatbuilders have started to be irresponsible if this sort of design feature is getting let loose

 

On a general note, the upper chamber at Bascote has about six feet of water in it if the locks make the correct level, so a typical narrow boat going up with the top lock "empty" may not need to add any water at all to get through - this was the cause of my debate with the "lock-keeper" last time I went through, he wanted me to do this and I wouldn't because I was with an ABC hire boat, and although it is possible to do this I don't think it should be encouraged: one day someone will make a mess though not understanding that this only works with shallow draft narrow boats if the upper chamber has at least the normal level when empty - it's not a judgement call for strangers and novices to make.

Edited by magpie patrick

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1 hour ago, magpie patrick said:

By "lock keeper" do you mean the guy who lives in the house by the locks, as I seem to recall the cottage was sold off long ago, last time I went through (which was admittedly some years ago) whoever was in residence was clearly not the lock keeper although they gave freely of their advice - see my last paragraph below

Definitely a CRT guy - blue shirt/red life jacket etc.  From what I can gather he was permanent staff not a volunteer and I would guess most likely there on water management work, co-ordinating the pumps.  He clearly had access to equipment stored at Napton because he went off there and returned with a keb and grappling hook.

 

What is frustrating that he and I phoned this in at 2pm on Saturday.  I used the emergency number and once I had explained to the call centre that we weren't on the Aylesbury Arm (!), I was assured a Duty Manager would call me back.  They didn't.  When a fellow boater phoned it in on Sunday morning, this was the first they new of it at 11:00.  I have no idea who "Lockie" called and I didn't get an Incident Number unfortunately.  I think CRT use West Midlands Ambulance Service for weekend calls so it's no surprise she had no idea where the Bascote Staircase is but not registering the call is concern.

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4 hours ago, magpie patrick said:

By "lock keeper" do you mean the guy who lives in the house by the locks, as I seem to recall the cottage was sold off long ago, last time I went through (which was admittedly some years ago) whoever was in residence was clearly not the lock keeper although they gave freely of their advice - see my last paragraph below

 

 

I have stayed in that house as its also an Airbnb. The previous owner was a very interesting JP but I think the present incumbent works as a RYA boating instructor.

 

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29 minutes ago, Mike55 said:

As of 1736 the lock is open again according to the CRT website.

I'm not sure that's right - according to Jim Shead's website they didn't even start to build the staircase until 1933! ;)

 

  • Haha 1

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On 23/06/2019 at 09:22, billS said:

There were several CRT chaps chipping away at the coping stones underneath the bridge by the Warwick Fly Boat Company on the Stockton Flight yesterday. A broad beam Dutch style barge on its maiden voyage from the builder in Warwick has been trying to get through for several days apparently.

Still there today along with CRT chaps, temporarily stuck but now free (still wrong side of bridge though). The bridge has quite obviously moved by at least 3 inches and looks like a temp iron arrangement is holding it together.

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10 minutes ago, roland elsdon said:

I think its actually the right side of the bridge given the next ones narrower

 

Maybe they are only trying to get it to WFB, for craning out....

 

 

Oops wrong thread chaps!!!

 

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That widebeam has finally moved from below WFB, we know as we were following it up Stockton after it got stuck again at Blue Lias.

 

The owners seemed clueless and an entire army of CRT guys locked them through.  At 12ft 6" beam and headed for the Thames in London, I reckon there will be much said on various forum sites and the may even get wedged in Braunston Tunnel.

 

Knowing the lack of width even down the GU, it would have been better by road.  They'll probably need a repaint when they get to London.  With wheel steering not tiller, they were tacking from side to side and using the bow thruster to compensate.

 

At least it was a proper wide beam and not just a fat boat based on narrowboat design😃 

 

Horses for courses - better oop north as Mr Smelly says - Hi mate☺️

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38 minutes ago, rustynewbery said:

Horses for courses - better oop north as Mr Smelly says - Hi mate☺️

Or on the Danube maybe - that should relieve the GU of the burden. :D

 

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We saw it parked outside Midland Chandler's at the junction. The owner seemed quite relieved to get there.

It looks a nice boat. We used to see it a lot on Nelson wharf but it looks far smarter in cruising mode with all the topside stuff flattened. Glad we didn't meet it at Bridge 100.

Nice to see Roland and Sue. Hope it didn't slow you down!

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Mathematicians out there?  If it takes about 5 minutes to get a boat through bridge 102 (as it did yesterday). ... how long does it take to get the same boat through a twisty 2,000+ yard tunnel?  Perhaps it has already been achieved?  Anybody know?

Anybody waiting?

And Blisworth?  Seem to remember it being rather unfriendly to high cabin edges. ...  that’s gonna take an awful lot of bow thrusting in the process😳

Edited by carpet wallah
Typo

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13 minutes ago, carpet wallah said:

Mathematicians out there?  If it takes about 5 minutes to get a boat through bridge 102 (as it did yesterday). ... how long does it take to get the same boat through a twisty 2,000+ yard tunnel?  Perhaps it has already been achieved?  Anybody know?

Anybody waiting?

And Blisworth?  Seem to remember it being rather unfriendly to high cabin edges. ...  that’s gonna take an awful lot of bow thrusting in the process😳

The French did an extensive mathematical study regarding boats in tunnels during the design of the Riqueval Tunnel. You can find their results in Nouvelles experiences sur la resistance des fluides, published in 1777.

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1 hour ago, carpet wallah said:

Mathematicians out there?  If it takes about 5 minutes to get a boat through bridge 102 (as it did yesterday). ... how long does it take to get the same boat through a twisty 2,000+ yard tunnel?  Perhaps it has already been achieved?  Anybody know?

Anybody waiting?

And Blisworth?  Seem to remember it being rather unfriendly to high cabin edges. ...  that’s gonna take an awful lot of bow thrusting in the process😳

If it was booked to go through today, I believe the widebeams go at 8am, so it will be long through the tunnel, minus perhaps some paint.

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53 minutes ago, john6767 said:

If it was booked to go through today, I believe the widebeams go at 8am, so it will be long through the tunnel, minus perhaps some paint.

It’s moored up just the other side of the tunnel - or was around 1200 when we went past.

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I spoke to the volockie working the Stockton flight today......and he said he was one of the ones that helped them up Stockton earlier in the week. He said the bloke seemed competent but unfortuately the wife was steering using the bow thruster so it was continually 'over steering' and crashing into things. He seriously advised her to stop using the bow thruster.  He said they were heading to London first and then on to France but were going to look for somewhere in London to park it for 3-4 months! That will be a challenge then.

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