Thursday, July 30, 2009

The demise of Andy's bunk

Andy's bunkIt had to go.

The trouble was it had got covered in bitumen, sacrificed as part of the painting down in the fish hold project some time ago.

Bitumen is great for protecting steel against rust, as it never really dries out. I think it flows into cracks, scratches and gaps over time, which dry paint would simply not do.

Touch anything with bitumen paint on it and that bitumen inevitably ends up on you, especially if you are wearing your best clothes.

Knowing that now, I'll think more carefully about where I paint with bitumen paint again.

So far as a replacement for a bed goes, Andy has his trusty hammock to fall back on. So no worries there.

By the way - there are pictures of Andy not lying down someplace...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Generator bearings

Troublesome bearingDismantling the generator was pretty straightforward, as was getting the first bearing off.

The second bearing proved a little more troublesome, and as soon as I chipped a piece of cast iron off of the rotor I stopped trying to prise the bearing off with a piece of steel bar.

I did know better before I even started, but thought I'd just give it a try...

Anyway, after hauling it round to a few likely places to get the bearing removed using a proper puller, I gave that up as a waste of time. At one garage, the mechanic could not even comprehend what I was trying to do!

Back on board, I knocked up a very crude, but effective, puller with a few bzzts of the old welding machine.

If I ever need it, version 2 will have sliding jaws and a nut/bolt arrangement to ease a bearing off. This that you see was the quickest and easiest to craft up for the job in hand.

A few knocks with a hammer and the bearing popped off in no time.

I should have done that in the beginning.

By way of an update - I did take a picture of the plate on the side of the generator, but it did not come out at all well. I'll try again when I'm next on board.

Friday, July 24, 2009

New chair

Proper chairThis project was prompted by skipper John some time ago.

I've finally got it done, after a visit to a certain well known Swedish furniture store.

I decided that buying one already in bits was going to be a whole lot easier than trying to re-engineer that aluminium chair.

What I really need to do up here in the wheelhouse is also get rid of some of the junk that has accumulated over the last year or so and make some space for myself.

I'd forgotten just how much I love sitting up in the wheelhouse, watching the world go by.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

More primer

More primerAll sorts of things are getting a dose of primer.

While doing the steel, I'm also getting primer onto some of my earlier creations. These are now starting to show signs of rust, and need restoring to their former glory.

The big plan here is to get the primer on, paint what I need to, then do a much needed general tidy up on deck so things look a little more ship shape.

This, of course, presumes the weather co-operates.

Monday, July 20, 2009


24V GeneratorThe generator I removed some while ago has been cluttering up the place.

It's a remarkably heavy device, which has just been getting in the way since it was taken out.

I finally got round to stripping it, ready to fit the replacement bearings it needs.

What really surprised me was that the rotor, the spinney bit from the middle you can see, is not magnetic in any way.

Anyway, the main thing is getting replacement bearings which I shall pursue during this week.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Fame - of sorts

Away againThis picture has been published:

In a Schmap guide

My ego tells me the Schmap folks spent hours searching every nook and cranny of the internets, to find only the best pictures of Micklegate.....

What I didn't tell them was it was snapped with my mobile phone (cell phone) camera, simply because I thought I should take at least one picture while I was in York. Actually I took a few of York in the end, but never got round to posting them on Flickr.

To be fair though, the Schmap guides do look interesting. For example, based on what I see in the guide, I think I should at least take some time out and explore Southampton.

Recently, I also had some design company wanting to pay for the use of three of my images, the trouble with that was they had the wrong TimZim so, sadly, no cash from them!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Lilagina leaking

Lilagina leakThe saga of Lilagina's leak continues...

I was on board Lilagina over the weekend. Graham showed me where the leak was.

More like a little stream in there than a leak!

No wonder he was out there twice a day to pump her out.

The guy you can only just see in the water has apparently managed to plug the hole, reducing the stream to just 'a bit of damp'.

One odd thing Graham mentioned - Some unknown person had been on board during all this, and made themselves a cup of tea.

That particular means of access has now been blocked. So if you are up the Itchen and gasping for a cuppa, look elsewhere.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Steel priming

Steel primingMy deck is a real mess at the moment.

The offcuts from the steelwork at the stern has prompted me to also take care of some of the other new(ish) steel I have on board.

I also see that some of the other plate I have on board will need another coat of primer soon.

Experience has taught me that slapping primer onto steel early on helps keep the steel in pristine condition.

As I well know, the better the condition the steel is in, the easier it is to cut and weld.

Monday, July 06, 2009

No tow hitch? No problem.

No tow hitchI saw this and thought "I've just got to get a picture of this"

In truth, it's not what it first appears.

I had a chat with the guy responsible. It turns out that all he needed was something to secure the trailer to, while he pushed the boat backwards a bit to clean the spot beneath the rollers.

Friday, July 03, 2009


MeThere are not that many pictures of me about.

Mostly I'm the one behind the lens, photographing other people or things.

When Andy photographed the little steamboat, he also snapped me while I was manoeuvring Willcarry 1, my platform, about with the well used looking Old Sow.

That work platform has been so incredibly useful...

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Little steamboat

Little steamboatNow here's something unusual (picture taken by Andy as I was busy elsewhere at the time).

Not long ago Tugster included some pictures of steam boats in his blog (you need to scroll down a bit), I never expected that just a few weeks later I'd see one on the Itchen, but there it is.

I'll bet there's hours and hours of tender loving care gone into that.