Saturday, 10 December 2016

Been a bit busy

Not posted for a while, work is hectic.

Anyways, all is good.  We have been on Lola boat and filled the fuel tank.  Toilet tank is still not even showing a quarter full so that's all good too.

We had Phoenix Boat Services do an engine service, gearbox check and replace the stern gland packing.

Sadly, no boating until the new year due to pressures of work and business, Aurelia Bioscience goes from strength to strength and my job just gets busier too.

Next post in the new year I reckon.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Off the boat

Ok, so I popped to boat last Saturday to assess battery situation.  Armed with some de-ionised water and a friend with a multi meter and more knowledge re batteries than I, we got to the boat and first checked what victron said.  Strange battery outputs were all in the 14.36 range as measured at the batteries and confirmed by victron with soc 100%.  We then opened the batteries up and topped up where required.  We hung about for an hour and charger and batteries were fine.  Heading up to boat tomorrow where we will give her a fresh shakedown and take oodles of photos.

So, all seems well for the time being and I will be reading up more about our victron to discern more valuable information.

I feel that battery management is key to future, longer term trips.  As we have a Honda eu20i at home, we will have options when we do finally chuck work and enjoy early retirement.

For now it's off to the allotment to check on the cabbages!

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Oh woe is me - alternator!

Ok,  alternator dead. New alternator fitted.  Now I find one of the batteries is poorly.  So, Friday coming, off to the boat to check water levels in battery and see if we can recover it.  Often, one battery brings down the rest, we shall see.  If the battery is beyond hope and the others reporting fine via the victron bmv , I will replace the offending battery and see if we can maintain service.

More of this tale to follow.

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Boat not quite sorted, but not far off

ok, so the new toilet tank is fitted, new indicator and new pipes with a vent pipe sticking out of hull.  All good so far.  Once the boat was returned to the marina we went up the following weekend to check out the throne room and go for a wee trip out.  Throne room fine, so far.  The batteries would not charge.  It was ok when we left it but it seems it is not happy.  It, the offending alternator, has been taken out for a test and a decision on next steps will follow.  We have missed boating this summer but the issue was peculiar and took some time to fix.  The alternator is just a bugger.  Plan is to go out this weekend and shake down again.  I promise to post some pictures.

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Replacement toilet tank etc

So, the saga continues.  We have agreed to the work being done.  I will report the results when the work is finished.

The work.  So, we need a replacement tank.  This time it will be stainless steel.  The pipes will be, I believe, ABS kit.  A better tank fill indicator will also be fitted.  I expect the job to be done early September.  Not been on boat since then but will be popping up for a few days each week for the next couple of months, just need to keep the odorloss topped up.

I will try to take some before shots but only if I care to remember.

Two more jobs on the line, an engine service and deep clean and a refreshed stern gland packing.

Don't buy a boat if you cannot keep it maintained say I

The cratch cover looks nice.  Fitted a few weeks ago

Gives us the extra room we need and helps with seating options.  Will be interesting getting used to it.

And before

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Oh, the smell!

Well now, not been blogging lately and the title gives a clue why.

We had a plastic waste tank fitted a while back and, keeping it simple. The top tank seal partly failed. This occurred for three reasons:

The tank seal was poor
The tank fill indicator failed
The vent pipe into the tank was poorly fitted, leaving a small u bend into which rain water, having entered the vent on the roof, stuck in the u bend stopping venting.

Trying to now get quotes to fix.  We have decided to get a stainless steel tank, a better fit and a carbon filter.  Problem is finding a fitter.  We have asked for quotes but no replies have been forthcoming, so far.  Whilst we can boat, the smell is wiffy.  Next week I am going to apply a temp fix, using sealant, lots of it, and ensure the u bend is clear.

Anyone in the Kings Bromley area wants to quote, please do!

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Walk to Trent Lock and a chance encounter

We, and friends walked our dogs to Trent Lock, which is not all that far from home.  Popped to the Steam Boat to be told that at 13:30 they were not taking orders until 14:30 because they were busy.  Now then, if that was my pub I would be taking orders, making customers clear of the wait.  Had they done that, we would have had another pint and waited.  As it was we upped sticks to the pub across the road. Odd.

Anyhow, walking towards Cranfleet, I spied Maffis boat Milly M, and not far Maffi himself having a chin wag.  Nice to meet you Maffi

Lola dog then decided to roll about in cow shit, what a pong.

We boated last weekend to Rugeley and back.  Next week it's half term so we are heading from Kings Bromley to Nottingham to Tixhall Wide and back to base.  Now it's a wee while since we did this trip (to Nottingham that is) and I am so looking forward to it.  I just have to get over a three day trip to Liverpool on business and a day and a half in Nottingham.

July it's a trip to Budleigh Salterton and August, back to the delights of Barcelona.  Then, the Trent and Mersey. September it's USA on business with, perhaps another visit to Gdansk. 

Last week was Bristol and Swansea.  I need to go to Newcastle and Southampton soon but not in the same week!  I enjoy travelling to meet my staff but it's simply not possible to be everywhere all the time.

In the meantime, the lovely Mrs D's business is going from strength to strength  Not your usual run of the mill business but if you have need of a biochem CRO,look no further.

Monday, 11 April 2016

Kitchen refit complete and boat washed


A few photos of NB Lola now we have finished our main changes.  From the start to finish we have almost gutted the whole boat but as we went along rather than one job.  We started in 2010 with the engine, a new Canaline 42, then the lounge, then the bathroom, then the outside paint job, then the  Kitchen and back cabin (used as a storage area, not in the trad sense).  Now its maintenance rather than big spends.

Shower, A Geoff Taylor job
Control Unit, the engine was fitted by Aqua Narrowboats, a most excellent boat builder
Shiny Bow, just been washed, painted by Geoff Taylor

Washed and clean
Toilet and hand basin, more Geoff work

Kitchen work bench

Cooker and sink, a great job by Geoff Taylor

Fixed Double bed (in a mess), new Webasto central heating, remote start and radiators fitted, again, by Geoff Taylor
Back Cabin, re-fitted by Geoff

lounge, fitted by Aqua Narrowboats

 The seating arrangement can be altered to create two single beds, a double bed or a dining area.

Through the years we have also done the other jobs, blacking of the boat where it is below the waterline, this is done with bitumen every year.  We have also renewed curtains, varnished wood whenever, replaced carpets, cushions, tv, cooker, calorifier (hot water tank), batteries, inverter, charger, Isolation Transformer, to name but a few.
Next time away is likely to be early May but we will pop up weekly and at weekends from now.

Sunday, 7 February 2016

The Trent in flood

This was The Trent this morning.  In twenty minutes the corner just before Trent lock was near impassable.  If the rain, as promised, drops today/tonight then we will see some fair flooding.

Saturday, 6 February 2016

New, refreshed kitchen

So, last job to be done has started, a refreshed kitchen.  We are using the original bases but replacing the doors, work tops, handles, cooker and tiles.

The cooker is on sale at midland swindlers and not a bad price to be honest, £450.  It's got 240 lighter but we can easily get power to it, not fan assisted so it won't draw much.  Shaker doors, a new sink too, should be finished by the end of the month if not earlier.  Another Geoff Taylor job along with some other work.  A new cratch, changing door locks and making the rear hatch an entry point, general maintenance and then it's blacking in March ready for boating again and also ready for retirement in the next few years.

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Yes, we are still here


Yes we are still boating.  Just taken a wee rest from blogging for reasons I cannot go in to.

Lola boat looks lovely in her livery and we have lots of plans for further improvement.  We are changing access so we can enter from the back hatch, previously it was just for use whilst steering.  Our dry side bilges were going to get sensors but not now, they are wholly dry and have been for a while.  We are adding a further from outside lock and also having a cratch built ready for a front cratch cover.  We will also get a rear Priam and cover.  Finally, we will have the kitchen doors and tops re-fitted as well as a new cooker.

Then, when that little lot is done we want to re model the back cabin, that's the problem with having money and no time off.

Daughter no 1 is enjoying uni and no 2 is enjoying personal attention!  I just pay the bills.

University costs a packet.  £450 a month allowance 500 a quarter towards rent, and next year we add gas electricity, water rates and cleaning product I laugh.  Our earnings do not get daughter no 1 more than the minimum grant so we cover the rest.

So, we still get to the boat, the remote heating control via the iPhone is really useful and we can protect against frost or pre heat ready for us boarding.