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Pinkatpole

Ballast

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After finally ripping out the back of the boat and moving the calorifier, boiler and basically anything heavy to the opposite side of the boat I now need to reballast it.

 

I have only got relatively easy access to two under floor sections which I can brick out.

 

What are the heaviest bricks available

 

Rough calculations means I need about 75Kg.

 

Alternatively I do have a small area where I can add probably 4 or 5 56lb weights but they are going for silly money on fleabay at the minute

 

Pinkatpole

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Metal ballast is far, far denser than any brick/concrete/stone based ballast, so if space is very limited you may have to go that route.

 

It would probably be daft to use proper 56lb weights, (or similar), because they are expensive, (but useful if you need portable ballast or mudweights). People use things like old counterbalance weights for lifts, offcuts of railway line, railway fishplates, or bits of discarded gym equipment, but it really depends what you can get your hands on, (please don't take anything from in-use railways, lifts or gyms!).

 

If you do have room for bricks, I'm guessing, but don't know for certain, that a typical engineering brick is heavier than a normal brick. Obviously the less holes and "frogs" they have in them the better, if you don't wish to be using up space with air!

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Hang on!

 

You have moved items not removed them, so you should need about the same ballast not more!

You need to put a level across the boat and move ballast from the high side to the low side. You never will get the trim perfect as things you need will move while living

 

If you have really limited access then you may need just a couple of kilos of lead to trim things. BUT you shouldn't need more ballast unless you need the boat to sit deeper in the water, which may NOT be a good idea as the vents get closer to the water!

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Hang on!

 

You have moved items not removed them, so you should need about the same ballast not more!

You need to put a level across the boat and move ballast from the high side to the low side. You never will get the trim perfect as things you need will move while living

 

If you have really limited access then you may need just a couple of kilos of lead to trim things. BUT you shouldn't need more ballast unless you need the boat to sit deeper in the water, which may NOT be a good idea as the vents get closer to the water!

 

The boat was originally ballasted and adjusted with two single beds, frames on either of the centre.

 

Calorifier (which is always full and boiler on one side)

 

There is now a straight through corridor where the calorifier and boiler were. The calorifier and boiler are now on the opposite side together with a pull out kingsixe double bed frame and wardrobe bulk heads and doors

 

The ballast in the two accessible sections was completely removed so there is no ballast to move from one side to the other.

 

The boat can quite easily sit slightly deeper in the water.

 

This is more of a weight distribution exercise which can only be achieved by weighting the now emptier side of the water

 

The heaviest I have found at the minute is staffordshire blue brick at 3 to 3.5 kg a brick

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I did some playing with ballast last summer,. In the end I just used solid engineering bricks, seconds at 31p +VAT each from a local builders merchants, I think they are 3.2Kg each. Steel has a much higher density, but is a lot more expensive if you have to buy it, so I compromised as I still have some (existing) 56lb weights talking up space in the front lockers. Lead is a crazy price if you have to buy it.

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What are the heaviest bricks available

 

Rough calculations means I need about 75Kg.

 

Engineering bricks. But almost as heavy are those drive paving bricks which cost about 35p each from Wickes. I put a load of them in Aldebaran and they weigh 2Kg each from memory. Their big advantage is the absence of holes, frogs etc so max weight for volume.

 

I also bought a pallet of 56lb weights for ballast a couple of years ago, as the Wickes bricks weren't heavy enough. They were £10 each to buy, plus £15 each delivery :o

 

Lead is a crazy price if you have to buy it.

 

Gold is denser than lead IIRC, surprisingly.

 

And the price is even more crazy :)

 

MtB

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Find your friendly neighbourhood proper brick supplier. They (nearly) always have a few pallets of broken bricks of various sorts and will let you look through for a few dozen of the sort you want. You can tell engineering bricks because they are much heavier than ordinary bricks. Going price is about 10p each, but you have to be able to transport them away yourself, or pay over the odds for a courier to do it for you.

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They are by far the best though.

 

RIMG0098.jpg

I used pig iron. They still use it at the foundry in Banbury where I last saw any. Mine came from the hull of a trawler. Each one weighed 14 lbs.

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Back in '05 soon after launching our selt fitout narrowboat I decided we needed more ballast to the tune of 100 paviors and for a period of a few weeks I daydreamed of finding what we wanted abandoned on the towpath. One sunny summers day soon after as we cruised down the Southern Oxford I couldn't believe my eyes as we sailed past a pile on the towpath in the middle of nowhere so we moored up and grabbed them. They were identical to ours and looked brand new, on counting them there was 105!

 

Spooky or what.

Edited by nb Innisfree

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About 7 years ago we had a job lot of about 100 paviors delivered to the canal, and when we went to pick them up, someone had nicked them................

Never leave your ballast lying around, people will nick anything.

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About 7 years ago we had a job lot of about 100 paviors delivered to the canal, and when we went to pick them up, someone had nicked them................

Never leave your ballast lying around, people will nick anything.

 

Ooer...

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OP - - I've got (up to) 6 spare 56lb weights.

 

All in good nick, primed and painted (two years ago) in Hammerite.

 

£15 each, - to be collected from Newark

Edited by Grace & Favour

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OP - - I've got (up to) 6 spare 56lb weights.

 

All in good nick, primed and painted (two years ago) in Hammerite.

 

£15 each, - to be collected from Newark

 

That sounds the easiest option.

 

Shall finish building my 56lb weight storage void tomorrow, then shall be in touch with how many I need. I am in Shardlow so Newarks not that far.

 

Thank you

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Have a look round for a local granite worktop company. They will have lots of scrap in the form of sink/hob cutouts. A typical granite / marble 30mm thick weighs 90kg sq/m.

 

Chances are they will let it go for next to nothing as it has no purpose and usually has to be skipped away at cost to them.

 

It's of course waterproof so won't wick up water and because of the general uniform size of hobs and sinks the cutouts are fairly uniform.

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