Monday 31 October 2016

Electrical problem and varnishing.

The honey moon is over it seems... well not really but thanks to the clocks going back, yesterday afternoon, we had first reason to put the lights on to continue working...  at which point we discovered one of the circuits - the one that includes the kitchen, bathroom and front bedroom wont stay on for more than 10-15 seconds before tripping off.

I  began trouble-shooting by first turning each light switch off and resetting the mcb to see if I could isolate where the fault was.  When that didn't work, I physically removed each light "in case" one of the self switching lights was faulty... no joy there either.  Finally, I removed the mcb and swapped it with the one from the next circuit (which works fine) on the off chance it was a faulty mcb.  No - that (the swapped over one) tripped just the same once connected to the aforementioned circuit.

This can really only mean one thing - " somewhere" between the front and the back of the boat, a nail/screw has gone through a wire...  this is a pain as we've already applied 2 coats of varnish (1 Saturday and 1 yesterday morning) to the entire boat.  As far as I can see, the roof lining will have to come out - possibly even bulkheads for "them"  to try and find the problem .  I've emailed the builder last night and when it gets light out, will give them a call to ask them to send someone to take a look - they'll be narked of course... who wouldn't be but it IS new and WE'VE not yet put a screw/nail or hole in her so it's NOT our problem.   I won't be arsy of course - these things happen and I'm sure it can be sorted out... I just hope (given the dark nights) sooner rather than later.

The Morrells varnish/lacquer by the way was very easy to apply and barely darkens the ash.

Whilst the varnish was drying, we took her out for a little chug and to fill up the tank...  worryingly, it didn't take very long at all to fill - and I thought it was empty... perhaps the pump was just priming a long while the other day when I was playing with the cassette toilet rinser...  time will tell.  

She does handle quite well - any problems will be US not the boat lol  The higher seats on the rear locker give a good view so that has turned out a good decision. I do need to either replace the checker-plate engine compartment cover with buffalo board OR silence the rattle with a cut hose-pipe seal as unless you stand in the middle of it, the noise it makes gets on your nerves.

BACK to yesterday afternoon - before we discovered the fault with the lighting circuit, I fitted one of the mains  and 12 sockets in the lounge  that will be between the chairs.

I've used the ferrules cause I know you are supposed to but I CAN'T see any benefit from doing it - I mean, the are just squeezed over the twisted multi-strand wire and then held by the screw clamp in the socket anyway... I really can't see any extra safety from  them but it's not an argument I'm going to have so have just done it "right".  The usb points, 12 socket and volt meter will come in handy to keep an eye on the batteries whilst watching TV of an evening to save walking to the meter cupboard at the back.  I did slip with my multi-tool and scratch the wall a bit but I think it will sand out ok...  *note to self- SLOW DOWN*

THAT said, we've had so many cups of tea and conversations with boaters/dog-walkers and random folk over the last few days, we're probably already at half speed lol.

THIS morning, the plan is to get another coat of varnish on throughout (well ignoring the roof lining in case it does get ripped out) and then have a chug down to fairies hill where we'll turn and then come back.  The plan is to use a quiet water point and hose down 1 side of the boat going down and then then other coming back - it's pretty filthy and whilst we know we won't get it painted before winter sets in, we might get another coat of primer on... possibly an undercoat for her to over-winter in.

Until next time...

Saturday 29 October 2016

Post delivery slump...

Thanks everyone for your good wishes - here, on cwf and thunderboat... it was good to know so many folk were pleased  and excited for us.

Adrenaline is a funny thing.

Thursday was a manic slow motion if you follow.  I was feeling quite sick from the moment I got up.

I'd been concerned beforehand about lots of things and on the day, everything was handled by everyone else - the best money we've ever spent.  The haulier was calm beyond belief (and reversed down the lane as if he was driving a mini)... everyone knew what they were doing and Edd coordinated it very professionally... another example of NOT judging books by their covers!

We drank a couple of bottles of Champagne when we got home (one very kindly given by Andy's sister) and tried to relax.

That didn't happen - it appears that when you drink after an adrenaline fuelled day whilst taking duluxetine, your brain goings into over drive.... to the point where you can't sleep at all.... I now know this and will not repeat that mistake lol

AS a result, yesterday was a slow and painful day - wandering around the boat feeling a bit bewildered at the enormity of it all.  So many jobs to do and not knowing what order to do them in... and as a result, not a lot got done.  On the plus side, we did have a few nice chats with new boaty neighbours and they seem a smashing bunch....  even the one who asked Andy if I was his Dad!!!

No offence was meant of course and everyone is being most welcoming and friendly.

From a progress point of view, I fitted a few extra bolts to the front doors and side hatches (they only had 1 on each so now we've got 3 .  I also cut a few sheets of the wood from from 4 to 2ft wide to make handling them around the boat easier... I also tested water pump, bilge and shower pumps - *note to self today we need to fill the tank as the test amount of water is now gone*.

I also attached the anchor and front and rear buttons...  that was enough for one dazed and bemused day.    LACQUERING is the plan today.

Until next time.

Thursday 27 October 2016

The Launch

Good evening,

Please excuse the typos as I'm a little squiffy - well actually, I'm a lot squiffy ... we've been drinking  since we got home from the launch and drinking on an empty head, is NEVER a good idea!

Considering the potential for problems, today has gone remarkably well... I don't know what you were all worrying about ;-)

I was up from about 4 - unable to sleep... fretting about everything...

ALL a waste of time and effort - I couldn't help it of course but a complete waste of emotion now.

To bring you up to speed, we signed our wills at 9.30 and were home well before 10.  by 10.02, I ran out of patience and phoned the haulier to see how things were going.

He confirmed his son was scheduled to collect the boat at 10 from the boat yard.  This had come as a bit of a shock (apparently) to the yard as they thought it was a pm collection... and had just blacked it!!!

OK - so it won't be cured, but it looks prettier than before.  No matter, we plan to do it properly in the spring anyway.

We took various photos and videos which will follow, but I DO want to say a public thank you to the following:

Chris and the gang and Lymm boat sales... they've managed to stick to schedule (actually - beat the original 10 month deadline)...

Richard Dempster (the haulier) and his son Kevin, who (despite having been hospitalised only the week before) who did exactly what was expected with no fuss and TOTAL calm.

Edd Blaze and Jools at Stanley Marina for organising a first class crane lift AND bow hauling the boat to the diesel point.

EVERYONE -  just did their bit with no fuss, hassle or problems!  I tipped them all and really do appreciate the effort they put in to "just another day the office"... for them!

Only the wind was a problem - but luckily not during the lift... only during our first chug over the Stanley Ferry aqueduct - I nearly t-boned some moored boats (the water tank being empty and the wind blowing a hoolie mid turn)...

Anyway - we made it safely onto the mooring.... where she's spending her first night alone - we've come home to drink champagne and "crash" after an adrenaline fuelled


SO - here are the photos and videos... probably not in any real order but folks we have a boat and it floats!

Until next time...

Wednesday 26 October 2016

1 more sleep...

Well, today I've had the final call confirming everything is happening tomorrow... the boat will be lifted onto the truck "sometime" in the  morning... the truck will arrive "sometime" and the crane will lift it off into the water "sometime" - how lovely and precise... .not in the least bit vague and difficult for someone who likes to be organised.

Apparently I'll get used to this vagueness.  I hope so.

I've finally managed to get the hang of the rope splicing/tucking bit...

The anchor one doesn't look as neat I'll grant you but by the time I'd done the side fender thingys' I was more into the swing of it...  I've been looking around trying to find things that need a loop on the end lol.

In the post today came a few more cordless additions to my tool kit - usually I buy makita but at Christmas I bought a cheaper ebrauer drill from screwfix and have been quite impressed with it... SO yesterday, I added a cordless angle-grinder, circular saw and jigsaw to my kit - they all use the same batteries and now I have 4 of them (and 2 chargers) so I can leave one on the boat and one in the house.

The angle grinder will be used tomorrow to shorten the chain for the front and rear buttons.

I THINK we're all set...


Paid the boat builder the balance,

Tipped the joiner,

Paid the crane man,

Have the cash for the haulier,

Licensed, registered and insured the boat,

Bought the "crt Key",

Filled 2 gerry cans with diesel,

Sorted out chains and d-shackles for the buttons,

Got the ropes ready,

Fitted the wooden handle into the tiller bar,

Got a hose-pipe and connectors,

Got the side fenders ready,

Got the windlasses out of the attic along with the fire-extinguishers (just in case) and 101 other things!

After work tonight, I also went up to the mooring and asked Mick and Claire (on the boats either side of where we are fitting in), to shuffle up a bit - offering to do it for them tomorrow if they cant be arsed tonight... I hope they DO it themselves though.

Next on the list is a good nights sleep... I wonder what the chance of that one is?

Watch this space !

Until next time...

Sunday 23 October 2016

photo heavy final visit before delivery.

Yesterday afternoon, we went over to see the boat for the final time before delivery - which is still scheduled for Thursday (at some point)... I hope it's not too early as we have an appointment at the solicitors to sign our wills off at 9.30am.

It'd been 2 weeks since we last took a look and I was half expecting quite a lot of outstanding work to be done.... and whilst yes, there IS plenty, seeing it yesterday, we can actually see it happening now.  Paul continues to work on it whenever he can and now Mike is giving him a lift with the side glazing and doors - they were in the boat next door when we arrived ... the varnish drying.

Anyway, here are the last set of photos ... the next ones will be "at home".

Apologies to anyone on a slow mobile connection if these have taken an age to load.  

We're quite pleased with how the 2nd toilet has turned out - we were a little concerned it would look like a  loo in a cupboard (which of course it is) but by having the black sparkly splash back (awful thought) all around it, it's given it a purpose... AND will make it less awkward for guests on board if someone is in the shower etc.  The real reason for having a 2nd cassette loo of course is for WHEN the macerator breaks or gets blocked we're not left with our legs crossed.

Whilst we were stood (standing?) by the boat talking with Paul, the boss man came over with a couple who were thinking about placing an order to show them around our boat.  The woman (nice enough on the surface) was overheard making disparaging remarks about our layout - the cheek of her... it's OUR boat and she can keep her opinions to herself lol.  Seriously though, whilst it might not appeal to everyone, when it (eventually) comes to re-sale it can easily be turned from a 4 berth to a 6 +2 by the addition of pipe-cots in the dinette and perhaps a sofa bed in the lounge... who'll be laughing then madam eh? 

It feels strange that in a few days, we'll have no money in the bank and a boat in our possession.  To say I am not sleeping would be an understatement...  this morning I gave up at 4am and began doing lists of things to do in order so we make the most of our upcoming week off work.

The priority is STILL to get the heating system plumbed in - with radiators and fin rads attached to the walls/floors etc. but before we begin that, Friday morning we'll be applying the first of 3 coats of the morrells 10% sheen lacquer.  I know most people prefer a more shiny (shinier?) finish but I've never been a fan of varnished wood.  I much prefer to "feel" the grain .  Paul was suggesting yesterday however that for the lining on the front and rear doors we wipe it down weekly with a light Danish oil to protect against blistering from rain spots.  Thinking about it, that makes perfect sense as every boat we've hired has shown signs of this so it will be good if we can manage to avoid it.

Shortly, I'm going to watch ANOTHER rope splicing video and make YET another attempt at that ruddy anchor chain!

Until next time...