Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Unscheduled visit to a dry dock !

Firstly, a huge thanks and recommendation from us for River Canal Rescue www.rivercanalrescue.co.uk and Anderton Marina www.andertonmarina.com both of whom have been extremely efficient and helpful to us over this past week.

The drama started last Saturday, luckily, just after our last son and his girlfriends holiday had finished with us and they were on their way back home. (I’m not really all that hot on grammar, but the way I’ve written girlfriend(s) makes it sound like he came with a couple of them, but no, he isn’t that lucky, he’s just got the one. Here’s a picture of them and you’ll also see Binks in his safe place whilst on the boat. 
The plan was to have a few quiet days after a busy couple of weeks when KLONK CLANG (sounds like something out of Bat Man doesn’t it.) WALLOP and that was us, we weren’t going anywhere other than with the current. Luckily we were still up on the Trent and Mersey Canal and hadn’t gone down to the River Weaver that we were planning to do a few days later, so we just gently drifted the ten feet or so to the tow path side of the canal.

I thought a running repair would do so popped up to the Chandler's for some parts, but a few hours later it became apparent that fixing it wasn’t going to happen by my fair hand and we subsequently found out that we’d managed to bend the prop shaft somehow. We contacted River Canal Rescue on the Sunday morning and they were with us a few hours later as the chaps were already on a call. It wasn’t easily fixable, as I’d thought, so they arranged with Anderton Marina to come down to have a look, price up the work that then saw us get into their dry dock.

I haven’t seen many dry docks, so the one at Anderton Marina may not necessarily be unique, but I think it is an excellent idea nonetheless. For want of another word, it’s like a skip with an entrance at one end. Once you’re in they wind up a door, pump out the water, the skip (dry dock) floats and the boat inside is out of the water – SIMPLES


< Dry dock before

                            Dry dock after >

< The door at the front
                     Ready and waiting >
Whilst we weren’t planning to black the boat until next year, we thought we may just as well get it done whilst it was out of the water so at least that’s a job done and sort of cheaper as well as we’ve put the cost of the dry dock against the repair of the prop shaft anyway. 
< Before

                                          After >

These last eight days or so has also given our solar panels a good test as we haven’t been able to run the engine and haven’t bothered hooking up to a shoreline either so we’ve been living off the sun alone. Not bad when we’ve been pretty much out of any direct sunlight (when there has been sunlight !) and what there has been has been through a Perspex roof.


Should, with should being the operative word, be down on the River Weaver in a few days time and plan to spend the next two or three weeks down there so stay tuned and we’ll let you know how we get on.

And so in signing off,

Day 178 in the Badger Sett Narrowboat - 311 miles and 102 locks further on from when we started.


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