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Cruiser_Boy

Watering can old style for painting

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A freind of mine, non-boater, has just asked me where she can get an old style watering can as seen on narrowboats either in base metal or plain paint that she can paint herself.

She wants the 5/10 litre type. I think she is confusing this with the water jugs that you see on narrowboats as I don't remember seeing full size watering cans.

Does anyone know where such a thing can be bought and what paint she can use ?

Any alternatives ?

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9 minutes ago, Cruiser_Boy said:

A freind of mine, non-boater, has just asked me where she can get an old style watering can as seen on narrowboats either in base metal or plain paint that she can paint herself.

She wants the 5/10 litre type. I think she is confusing this with the water jugs that you see on narrowboats as I don't remember seeing full size watering cans.

Does anyone know where such a thing can be bought and what paint she can use ?

Any alternatives ?

Watering Cans have no place on a traditional working narrow boat, but if you put the words 'buckby can' into Ebay then you will find a selection of new and pre-owned, and some of the painted ones are not up to much as far as their paint is concerned so are good candidates for stripping and repainting - just don't strip the 'historic' ones as they can be worth a fortune (none on Ebay at the time of writing) :captain:

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7 minutes ago, Cruiser_Boy said:

A freind of mine, non-boater, has just asked me where she can get an old style watering can as seen on narrowboats either in base metal or plain paint that she can paint herself.

She wants the 5/10 litre type. I think she is confusing this with the water jugs that you see on narrowboats as I don't remember seeing full size watering cans.

Does anyone know where such a thing can be bought and what paint she can use ?

Any alternatives ?

I have seen watering cans painted as canalware, but working boats would not have used them (they had no gardens), nor would they have measured their contents in litres. They tended to come in sizes from one up to five gallons.

 

What your friend needs is what is often referred to as a "Buckby Can", though this appellation is frowned upon by some boaters. I think there's a company in Birmingham or the Black Country which produces them. Failing that, perhaps a scruffy eBay example which needs sprucing up could be a possibility.

 

I have just remembered that we were once given a canal-painted watering can, but fortunately we no longer have it.

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Photo 1 expensive cans painted by the "Master" Frank Nurser. Picture from EBay a while back.

 

Photo 2 not so expensive can by "A N Other." Picture from EBay.

 

Photo 3 Blank cans available from Black Country Metalworks https://www.blackcountrymetalworks.co.uk/buckby-watercan-traditional-style-unpainted-large.htm

 

Photo 4 A watering can decorated in "Roses & Castles" style. Of no "historical" background.

 

In theory "Buckby Cans" were only available from the now long gone shop at Buckby Top Lock.

s-l1600 (3).jpg

s-l1600.jpg

Water Can.JPG

Watering can.JPG

Buckby top.jpg

Edited by Ray T
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The cans available from Black Country Metalworks, actually based in Oswestry are only suitable as souvenirs, I’ve painted a good few and noted poor soldering, open seams etc, though as an item to decorate they will serve. As Pete says, eBay may well be a better option, though prices are sometimes optimistic. Rose Narrowboats at Brinklow on the North Oxford manufacture heavy duty proper cans based on historic patterns, but the quality is reflected in the price and only appeals to traditionally minded boaters.

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With regard to paint: https://craftmaster.myshopify.com/

 

Set up By Phil Speight who also produces a handy DVD http://www.canaljunction.com/philspeight/

 

Mr Moore of this parish is also a boat painter of much repute. I don't think he holds teaching sessions though - I stand correction here.

 

Also courses at the Waterways Museum Stoke Bruerne: http://canalartbyterence.com/paintingCourses.html

 

Covid19 allowing.

 

Where ever the location a course is well worth doing to learn the technique - looks simple but that is an illusion. 

 

 

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1 minute ago, Ray T said:

Where ever the location a course is well worth doing to learn the technique - looks simple but that is an illusion. 

Which is why I prefer to employ the skills of professionals - do it once and do it right whilst supporting waterways business' :captain:

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Ray, I no longer run courses for groups but I do offer one to one tuition for serious painters.

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Okay thanks for all the advice.

I don't think she wants to do this regularly and as I said she is not a boater but wanted to try this out and end up with something she could use.

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1 hour ago, Cruiser_Boy said:

Okay thanks for all the advice.

I don't think she wants to do this regularly and as I said she is not a boater but wanted to try this out and end up with something she could use.

As did this couple who were in this 'van. They knew not of their background but found them useful. They did not want to sell them. :(

 

DSCF2888.JPG

 

Edited by Ray T

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6 hours ago, Athy said:

I have seen watering cans painted as canalware, but working boats would not have used them (they had no gardens), nor would they have measured their contents in litres. They tended to come in sizes from one up to five gallons.

 

What your friend needs is what is often referred to as a "Buckby Can", though this appellation is frowned upon by some boaters. I think there's a company in Birmingham or the Black Country which produces them. Failing that, perhaps a scruffy eBay example which needs sprucing up could be a possibility.

 

I have just remembered that we were once given a canal-painted watering can, but fortunately we no longer have it.

I would be interested to see a five gallon Watering Can. Lifting it full, let alone trying to use it, would be a challenge!! I have eight traditional galvanized watering cans, all with brass volume labels, ranging from 4 pints to 2 1/2 Gallons, one is quaintly labelled 3 Quarts. The largest I have ever seen was three gallons, and it was big.

 

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10 hours ago, David Schweizer said:

I would be interested to see a five gallon Watering Can. Lifting it full, let alone trying to use it, would be a challenge!! 

 

Absolutely. I think the largest "Buckby" cans in common use are three gallons, but I seem to recall seeing a bigger one. Lots of modern water containers hold five gallons and they're blooming heavy even though they're made of light plastic.

 

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for some reason it will only let me put one photo up i aslo have a churn i will try and put up here later

20200603_140847.jpg

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Thanks, Haza

No, it’s not one of mine, it looks more like the work of Brian Collings of Stoke Bruerne, though it’s a while since I’ve seen his work. Here’s one I completed recently.

 

B884283B-EF60-45C2-9D81-C71217343D6E.jpeg

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6 hours ago, Athy said:

Absolutely. I think the largest "Buckby" cans in common use are three gallons, but I seem to recall seeing a bigger one. Lots of modern water containers hold five gallons and they're blooming heavy even though they're made of light plastic.

 

In modern money five gallons is about 23kg of water, bit less than a 56lb bag of spuds or same as an average collie dog. That would be an awful big can.

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13 minutes ago, BilgePump said:

In modern money five gallons is about 23kg of water, bit less than a 56lb bag of spuds or same as an average collie dog. That would be an awful big can.

"Give us half a collie of spuds, please".

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3 minutes ago, Athy said:

"Give us half a collie of spuds, please".

There you go sir, that's one large Shetland sheepdog (mini Lassie) of Maris Pipers

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Tacking back from the forum's usual course away from the original question, if the OP's non-boaty friend is looking for something to decorate that they can use then galvanised watering cans are widely available for about £30 (or if only for decoration get an old one with possible holes). They'd look nice and be a useful item in the garden. Doesn't seem much point in paying a lot for a very specific style of can like the Buckby when it wouldn't be used for its main purpose.

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23 minutes ago, BilgePump said:

Tacking back from the forum's usual course away from the original question,

To be fair, that original question was comprehensively answered early in the thread.

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