24 January 2019

The Boat Team - Wednesday 

by: Myron

The Boat Team had two teams out today, with a total of seven crew. It was a bitterly cold day, and there was snow on the ground for good measure. I was surprised that the canal had not frozen at all. I was even more surprised when everyone turned up. Great commitment.

Weedie was taken down to Boakes Drive. This is to be near to where we are going to fit the mesh. While this was happening we found a couple of problems with Margaret when her checks were done. The prop shaft bolts had come loose again. We came to the conclusion they were threadbound. We brought some new bolts, flat and spring washers and for good measure some threadlock. Let’s see what happens now! The coolant water was well down yet again. Whilst carrying out the umpteenth inspection we found a drip, and managed to trace it back to a rubber hose connection. We tightened the jubilee clip and the drip stopped. For good measure we tightened all the jubilee clips we could see. Now I want everyone to keep their fingers crossed that the next time that we visit Margaret that there has been no coolant loss. Another problem was that although we removed a large amount of wire and plastic tie stuff from around the prop we could feel that there was a load more we couldn’t get to. It was now about half past eleven so rather than practice moving hoppers around, we decided to do the drydock thing at Ryeford and clear the prop there.

At this point I left the Margaret team to travel and set up in the locks, while I picked up the Weedie crew, which I did. We the arrived mob handed at WD to see if we could move the 120 kg of new mesh. After gingerly removing some of the packaging, we decided that it was best left packed up until we figured out more of the details of how we were going to move it to site and exactly when. Good old Buffer, he too it very well indeed that we were going to have to leave this in the yard for maybe some weeks yet. We cleared off before he changed his mind. We then went to see how the Margaret crew were getting on., stopping of at Stonehouse Court on the way to have a look at the lie of the land at our chosen work location, their landing stage. It has a nice big flat area that we can work on.

Anyway, we arrived at Ryeford locks to find the team there had things well in hand and were half way through the job. So we had lunch on the side of the lock…and naturally told them exactly what they were doing wrong. Good sport for a while. When I got bored with that I wandered up the cut to see what Patricia was up to. Whilst extending an invitation to us to visit for tea, they shared some very good news, but I shall leave it up to them to announce it. So we had a cup of tea and a chin wag in the winter sunshine. It was a satisfied crew that motored back to Ebley a short while later.

Thanks chaps, for turning out on a not very inviting day.