Monday, 12 October 2009

More Water in than out!

Captains Log Canal Date 12th October 2009 Travels 14 Miles 17 Narrow lock 2 Staircase Locks (2 Days and 1 break down) Current Location Wolverley Lock - Again (Lock Pub) OS REF SO 830 790 Lat Long 52 24 31.4N 2 15 03.9W After having the art work done on the hatch doors, front panels and slide hatch, and having 2 seats manufactured for poor old captain it was time to move on again. Dimmingsdale is an excellent mooring. Millie thoroughly approved of having 2 acres all to her self. It was nice to have the car securely locked behind gates. It does not matter how nice it is I was still getting itchy feet and looking forward to our next voyage. We said our tearful goodbyes to Tony (owner of the site) and Duncan & Marg (owners of Petrel - Trad working boat) We set off at the crack of dawn on Saturday (11.00) and have planned to go to Wolverley Lock. A long run by our standards but achievable. All went according to plan until we stopped for fresh water and to empty the loo tank. We started to fill the tank whilst pumping out the loo. 10 minutes later the loo was empty but the fresh tank was still showing empty. I assumed that the gauge must be playing up as it went down far too quickly the other day, so we carried on filling the tank. After a further 10 minutes the gauge was still showing empty. I knew that the tank should have been full by now – time for investigation. When the filler hose was removed from the tank I could still hear water running –not good! I soon found that the outlet pipe from the tank to the pump had come adrift causing a few hundred gallons of water to go somewhere in the boat! I lifted the inspection hatch at the rear of the boat to find a lovely swimming pool. Not many fish but plenty of water. In order to carry out any sort of repair it was necessary to remove the steps to gain access to the front bulkhead. That stumped me. There was no obvious way of removing the steps, I had removed the only fixing I could find but the steps refused to budge. Eventually, in desperation, I prised them away with a crow bar. They were just an “interference fit” and bloody tight!! When the front bulkhead was removed it was easy to see the fault. The ½ iron pipe from the tank had either fell off or rotted though. Armed with next to nothing and everyone I phoned away for the weekend, I set about repairing the leak, all the time water is running down the boat damaging the wood floor. I eventually managed to make a temporary repair and set about rebuilding the bulkhead, architrave and steps. Isn’t it remarkable how you can loose tools without moving from the spot, I am very good at this. Next job was to remove all of the water in the bilges. Again armed with next to nothing. We used the toilet pump out kit to remove much of it but we could not get it down beyond 2” deep. Now 2” of water across the surface area of the boat is a lot of water! We gave up at about 7.30 and did the obvious thing. We went to the pub! Next morning our knight in shining armour (Glynn Phillips) turned up with pumps and set about emptying the bilges. It did not take long with the proper equipment. But the time the bilge was as dry as we could get them and we sorted the boat out se set off on our voyage. This time it was after the crack of dawn at about 2.30 No more problems, my temporary repair is holding, just a small weep. This will keep until the job can be done properly. This morning we woke up to a damp boat. With soaked flooring and still puddles in the bilges the condensation was very noticeable. At least any condensation can be wiped away and that is a bit less water on board. Oh we do have fun on the water!

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