Boat

Birthday Shinbash

A few shaky photos from a magnificent 18 hour birthday stint.

Read more →

Blacking Up (Part Two)

After Dawn’s slipping out, she was power-washed and given a new coat of bitumen. All the way up to the gunwales. Very smart. Especially compared to her prior grubby state. As on Friday, the slipping back into the water happened before work!

Read more →

Blacking up (Part 1)

Last night I got a call out of the blue from Jon Ody asking if I wanted my boat Dawn’s hull blacking. It’s something that needs to be done every couple of years and I was starting to think about it anyway. The catch: it had to be done tomorrow morning and he needed a decision promptly, as he had a free slot in the boatyard. It didn’t help that it would make me homeless for the weekend.

Read more →

Modified external lamp

I picked up an outside light, the kind that you plug in and stick in your lawn, going cheap at B&Q. Although it said it had blue LEDs (I’ve never claimed to have much style but anything with blue LEDs in it is an unforgivable faux-pas) I had a roll of white LEDs at home. It was a nice sealed unit (no IP rating but it looked solid enough) which I thought would come in handy for stickig on the outside of my boat and shining at things.

Read more →

Mapping Live River Conditions on the Thames

I love going out on my boat and I do it as often as I possibly can. Unfortunately the recent rain has meant that I’ve been unable to as often as I’d like. If the current is too fast, it’s not sensible or safe to do it. The Environment Agency has an excellent site which gives live information. But I wanted to put it on a map. Cue an evening of hunting down coordinates of every lock on the non-tidal thames (Google data is surprisingly bad) and writing an app to take data out of the online service and put it on a map.

Read more →

Graffiti Tribute to Hussain Mohammed

I live not far from the spot where Hussein Mohammed jumped in the Thames and drowned. Local youths have spray-painted their tributes in the underside of the bridge. Touching.  

Read more →

Grime and paint. : pictures

In the week after the engine came out, I was left with access to my bilges. These are usually hidden away behind an unmovable wooden wall, with access blocked by the engine. As far as I can tell these had not seen the light of day for two decades (my boat was built in 1993 and there are no signs of the engine having been out since then). It appears that they weren’t even painted, or if they were, there’s no paint left.

I was appalled at the state of them, frankly. The rust was thick, and not in a good way. My boat is my home, as well as my boat, and the sign of that much rust really wasn’t a very comforting thought.

Read more →

The Great Engine Hoist : pictures

I come from an engineering family. I know no-one who enjoys playing with engines more than my father. Within days of me buying a boat he had opened up the engine and taken the cylinders off to re-fit the piston rings. Admittedly, the reason he did this is that the engine had failed and we were stranded thirty miles outside Oxford with an immobile boat. But I have a feeling it would have happened anyway sooner or later.

Read more →

First Torchbox Cruise of the Season

My first cruise of the 2012, the first Torchbox cruise of 2012 and the first outing for the new decking. Also check out Louise’s flickr set.

Read more →

How to Make Boat Decking

How to make boat decking in 11 easy but detailed steps. 1 : Find a load of scrap timber. Put in on the roof and pace up and down a bit. It is crucial that you stay away from the edges whilst pacing if there is someone else on board. 2 : Remark upon the awkward disposition of the nails. It is important to spare a thought for the craftsman who came before you.

Read more →