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The Dreamer

Car parking

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Evening all,

 

We are planing to set out as continuous cruisers, from March.  The expectation is to cruise all summer, work all winter, with the aim of doing the whole network in three years.  Will probably take winter moorings, either CRT or in a marina in the depths of the cold, and obviously will slow right down for the rest of the period we are working.  However we need to keep a car both for work, but also to keep in touch with aging and sick relatives.  Really don’t want to leapfrog a car all the way from a Brum to Bath, and back (for example), and am happy for one of us to take the train to pick it up when we need it. My question is, is there anyone else who does this, and if so, what parking arrangements do you have?

Edited by The Dreamer

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Loads of us have done this many times over the years. There is always a choice of places to park,  roadside, car parks, pubs etc etc etc. I have never had a problem. Best thing is make sure you have a banger that you are not worried about leaving anywhere, having an expensive car makes zero sense at any time of life but whilst cruising even less so.

Edited by mrsmelly
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Hire one when you need it, they can be delivered to where you are and collected from your next landing place. Its cheaper than ownership once you consider depreciation etc. and you don't have to worry about vandalism.

Train railcard, bus pass etc all help.

A cycle can be used for surprisingly long distances in the countryside, less traffic.

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We had a car when we first started continuous leisure cruising. I agree with young MrSmelly. We had a Citroen Picasso, an ideal car to leave anywhere.

 

edited to add that we retired the car and now do as Boater Sam has suggested. Enterprise is good. 'They pick you up'.  

Edited by Nightwatch
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Just now, Boater Sam said:

Hire one when you need it, they can be delivered to where you are and collected from your next landing place. Its cheaper than ownership once you consider depreciation etc. and you don't have to worry about vandalism.

Train railcard, bus pass etc all help.

A cycle can be used for surprisingly long distances in the countryside, less traffic.

We tried this and its MASIVELY more expensive than ownership in reality. We do about 20k a year visiting kids/friends/mother and our two cars cost less than a grand each, zero depreciation and totaly reliable japanese engineering. Fully comp insurance for both cars under 400 quid, one car would be even cheaper. Pick em up by rail mostly which is cheap over short distances with rail cards.

2 minutes ago, Nightwatch said:

We had a car when we first started continuous leisure cruising. I agree with young MrSmelly. We had a Citroen Picasso, an ideal car to leave anywhere. 

Great cars. We used one all last summer when cruising the UK, not as reliable usualy as Japanese but that picasso last summer cost me 550 quid in good condition and I put 10k mile on it and sold if for 650 squids. Comfy car.

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We do nowhere near that mileage. We have disowned our families, or is it the other way round? ?

Fancy getting rid of one of the best cars available. Margaret will never forgive you!! 

 

 

Edited by Nightwatch

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1 hour ago, Boater Sam said:

 

Train railcard, bus pass etc all help.

A cycle can be used for surprisingly long distances in the countryside, less traffic.

 

A folding bike is not so good for riding, but is easily stored on the boat and can be taken on buses and trains without being affected by the restrictions which some train companies impose on taking bikes on trains.

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3 hours ago, Nightwatch said:

We had a Citroen Picasso, an ideal car to leave anywhere.

Bloomin' good idea!  I can't think of a better car to leave just about anywhere - remember to remove the number plates and the engine/chassis numbers though, or the authorities might catch up with you.  Mind you, a Bongo Friendee or a (whatever-it-is) Picnic would come close...

 

;)

 

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1 hour ago, David Mack said:

 

A folding bike is not so good for riding, but is easily stored on the boat and can be taken on buses and trains without being affected by the restrictions which some train companies impose on taking bikes on trains.

Not sure I'd entirely agree with folding bikes not being so good for riding. I've got a Brompton and cycled around the Yorkshire Dales doing 30 miles a day on it (not all day, just 4 or 5 hours a day. The rest of the day was dedicated to visiting the pub).

 

It rides far better than you'd think it would and it was my main bike when I lived in London and would commute up to 10 miles a day on it.

 

It certainly has paid for itself.

 

Back to the original topic. I don't have a car but I do have a motorbike and leap frogging is exactly what I do. It's not ideal but possibly easier with a motorbike than a car. And places to park my bike are more prevelant than for a car I would have thought. Worst case, I stick it on the towpath next to my boat.

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9 hours ago, NB Caelmiri said:

Back to the original topic. I don't have a car but I do have a motorbike and leap frogging is exactly what I do. It's not ideal but possibly easier with a motorbike than a car. And places to park my bike are more prevelant than for a car I would have thought. Worst case, I stick it on the towpath next to my boat.

I love this idea of having a motorcycle with me, but my bike is far too big to embark on any narrowboat and my boat isn't well suited to even a small one. I have seen a few boats carrying a motorcycle, some arrangements looking better than others, but it takes a large well or tug deck or a cruiser stern, neither of which I have. However, I'd always thought embarkation and disembarkation opportunities are few and far between as it is forbidden to have a motorcycle on the towpath.  Do your plans not suffer from that restriction?

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38 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

I love this idea of having a motorcycle with me, but my bike is far too big to embark on any narrowboat and my boat isn't well suited to even a small one. I have seen a few boats carrying a motorcycle, some arrangements looking better than others, but it takes a large well or tug deck or a cruiser stern, neither of which I have. However, I'd always thought embarkation and disembarkation opportunities are few and far between as it is forbidden to have a motorcycle on the towpath.  Do your plans not suffer from that restriction?

I've not had any problem so far. I certainly never ride my bike onto the towpath and it's only there if I'm desperate and close to an exit from the towpath. I even mentioned to one of the CRT staff at Sowerby Bridge that the bike was mine and I'd be moving it (I was at the top of Tuel Lock 3/4 waiting to go down the next day when the vlockies were in attendance) as soon as possible and they didn't seem bothered. Like I say, I don't make a habit of it - usually I can find a place to park and lock up the bike. So other than the hassle of jumping on a train/bus to go back to pick up the bike, it's been fine.

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over 10 years of cc we have had the following problems when parking thr car in lay-bys back window smashed, passenger window broken and tapes stolen, badly vandalised in lay-by on edge of canal, best place is in front of houses a 100cc scooter is lighter to lift on  and off.

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13 hours ago, David Mack said:

 

A folding bike is not so good for riding, but is easily stored on the boat and can be taken on buses and trains without being affected by the restrictions which some train companies impose on taking bikes on trains.

Echo getting a Brompton. I've many bikes and the Brompton is my favourite. Ok it's expensive but keeps its value. People have done LEJOG on them with no issues.

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Personally I would park the thing at a relatives house or leave it at home if you have a house. We have done this all over France and Holland and its a blasted nuisance. Never any vandalism but this year I parked it in a perfect spot, came back three weeks later to find no car but a damn great funfair. The car had been where the waltzer now was. Car towed. 200 Euros to get the thing back. Another time I parked it in a good spot, came back to find workmen digging a trench for new water pipes and heading for the car, little dotted lines for 'Dig here' up to the car and out the other side.

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I did this leapfrogging malarky when we repatriated the boat from dahn sarf to Cheshire. The key is to stop, then go and fetch the car, when you are near a railway station (or a bus stop). Always ask/inform the site owner when leaving a car for a few days, or a week or two. Marinas are especially good for parking, but that depends on paying for a temporary mooring. Rural parking spaces can be found, but they tend to be a long way from bus stops and railway stations. And of course, you could always offer to supplement the income oft a local pub by paying them some parking dues ... it never harms to ask!

2 minutes ago, Bee said:

Another time I parked it in a good spot, came back to find workmen digging a trench

...hence my remark about asking locally!

 

 

Edited by Machpoint005
for clarity

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I once tried to keep the car with me when long- distance cruising and found it to be a major interference. After two months I took it home and enjoyed the extra freedom this gave me. If I needed a car I used Enterprise, who picked me up where I was moored (as long as it was next to a road of course).

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15 hours ago, NB Caelmiri said:

Not sure I'd entirely agree with folding bikes not being so good for riding. I've got a Brompton and cycled around the Yorkshire Dales doing 30 miles a day on it (not all day, just 4 or 5 hours a day. The rest of the day was dedicated to visiting the pub).

 

It rides far better than you'd think it would and it was my main bike when I lived in London and would commute up to 10 miles a day on it.

 

I have a Brompton. Its not big enough. With the saddle at its highest extent my legs are nowhere near straight when the pedal is at its lowest point and my knees are well bent at the top. So I end up with aching knees after a couple of miles, and 5-6 miles is the furthest I can ride in one go. That's enough though in most cases to get me between boat/station/car as required, so I put up with the discomfort.

Edited by David Mack

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59 minutes ago, David Mack said:

 

I have a Brompton. Its not big enough. With the saddle at its highest extent my legs are nowhere near straight when the pedal is at its lowest point and my knees are well bent at the top. So I end up with aching knees after a couple of miles, and 5-6 miles is the furthest I can ride in one go. That's enough though in most cases to get me between boat/station/car as required, so I put up with the discomfort.

Oh right! Well, I think you must be taller than me! I'm 5'11, and have ridden all over the place with it. Body shapes are all different though and what fits me fine clearly doesn't fit you as well. Have you tried any other folding bike? Before I had my Brompton, I had a Dahon folding bike. I didn't keep it because it was a bit of a lump to be dragging onto the tube every couple of days but it rode really, really well. Probably better than the Brompton. But I've got used to the Brompton's quirks!

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3 hours ago, Bee said:

Personally I would park the thing at a relatives house or leave it at home if you have a house. We have done this all over France and Holland and its a blasted nuisance. Never any vandalism but this year I parked it in a perfect spot, came back three weeks later to find no car but a damn great funfair. The car had been where the waltzer now was. Car towed. 200 Euros to get the thing back. Another time I parked it in a good spot, came back to find workmen digging a trench for new water pipes and heading for the car, little dotted lines for 'Dig here' up to the car and out the other side.

 

Sorta like this ?

roadkill.jpg

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1 hour ago, David Mack said:

 

I have a Brompton. Its not big enough. With the saddle at its highest extent my legs are nowhere near straight when the pedal is at its lowest point and my knees are well bent at the top. So I end up with aching knees after a couple of miles, and 5-6 miles is the furthest I can ride in one go. That's enough though in most cases to get me between boat/station/car as required, so I put up with the discomfort.

I'm 6 foot. Mine fits me fine. The ex pro Dave Millar is 6'3' and he rides one. 

 

You do know that you can get a longer seat post for them. This will be fine for you.

 

https://www.evanscycles.com/brompton-extended-seat-tube-00100451

 

And if you're really tall you need the XL post. 

Edited by cougie

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14 hours ago, Sea Dog said:

I love this idea of having a motorcycle with me, but my bike is far too big to embark on any narrowboat and my boat isn't well suited to even a small one. I have seen a few boats carrying a motorcycle, some arrangements looking better than others, but it takes a large well or tug deck or a cruiser stern, neither of which I have. However, I'd always thought embarkation and disembarkation opportunities are few and far between as it is forbidden to have a motorcycle on the towpath.  Do your plans not suffer from that restriction?

I have a friend who uses one of these http://www.di-blasi.com/en/portfolio/folding-moped-r7e/  Image result for diblasi

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9 hours ago, ditchcrawler said:

I have a friend who uses one of these http://www.di-blasi.com/en/portfolio/folding-moped-r7e/  Image result for diblasi

To give di-blasi their due, its not often the specs for a moped give you a list of compatible spark plugs! :D  

 

You see this sort of thing in the paddock at motorcycle race meetings. I guess they're pretty well suited to that, but are they road legal? They look like they could be, but I shudder to think what a meeting with a council pothole would do to a 5" wheeled machine! Notwithstanding that, a tiny motorcycle with minimal road presence wouldn't be my first choice in today's traffic. It does go some way towards solving the narrowboat storage part of the conundrum though!

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On 09/10/2019 at 21:03, David Mack said:

 

A folding bike is not so good for riding, but is easily stored on the boat and can be taken on buses and trains without being affected by the restrictions which some train companies impose on taking bikes on trains.

They can be excellent for long distance riding if set up and configured correctly. I always used a Bickerton, two fitted neatly into the starboard stern locker, so guests could accompany me on side excursions. These snaps were taken in the early nineties when doing the ring from Brentford to Braunston, down the Oxford and back along the Thames with a sister. We moored up at Ivanhoe and rode into Dunstable to see where her former husband had grown up.

 

 

Bickertons, enroute Ivanhoe to Dunstable.jpg

Bickertons. Kenworth pub .jpg

 

I cannot recommend them for most people however, who invariably set them up like a ‘chopper’, and consequently wiggle all over the place. They are unforgiving of less than perfect riding style also. Still, I have travelled with mine over half the world, through deserts and over mountains and goat tracks. Still intend to complete a circumnavigation.

 

Edited by NigelMoore
add text
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