Wednesday 3 January 2018

Back Home

Over this break we had noticed that rain drips run down the outside of our multi fuel stove flue, originating from above the ceiling. Mike had taken a look from the outside but not worked out what was happening. As a result of new regulations, Morse have re-designed their kit and the way in which the flue is fixed to the roof etc. As a result it is rather different from what we have experienced hitherto. Directing a hosepipe at the base of the chimney also confirmed that this was the origin of the drips.

Yesterday we emailed Phil (Stem to Stern), our boat builder, in order to seek details of the assembly - this was not something we could find in the otherwise voluminous box of manufacturers' manuals that we were given at the outset. In particular, we needed to know just where to put any additional sealant.

Much to our surprise we had an email first thing today from Phil, who is based just up the motorway in Stafford, that he would like to pop down straightaway to take a look and see if he can fix it for us! Now we call that after sales support!

In fact, he arrived much quicker that he estimated and a quick inspection revealed that the seal had actually 'cracked' - not sure how best to describe it - although it was in a slightly different location from where we had imagined it to be. (It is on the outside of the upstand rather than, as before, on the inside) At least we now know if the problem occurs again.

Thinking about it, we suspect that the immediate cause was that we had left the chimney in place from when we arrived in the marina at the start of November. There have been some high winds, especially over the last few days, and this may well have created high strain levels at the base of the chimney, enough to cause the seal to fail. Of course, we were by now all packed up ready to set off back home so no time to allow the sealant to set properly and to give it a hosepipe test - that will have to wait until we next return but at least full marks to Phil for his assistance.

We were away around noon and the journey back home was remarkably uneventful. Given the strength of the wind when we left the marina we had wondered what we might encounter but we quickly passed out of the highest storm conditions - lorry traffic has still not picked up again after the Christmas and New Year break and there were no delays.

Tuesday 2 January 2018

Cleaning Day

Not a lot to report today as we return home tomorrow and so we needed to clean and sport out a few things. Mike was at least able to spend a little time looking at the new ideas for CanalMap (our home built logging and mapping system). After lunch we went into town for a little shopping.

Monday 1 January 2018


Again, don't be fooled by the blog title - we did not go by boat to Windsor! In any event, when we did see the Thames it looked in full flow and we did pick up from another blog a couple of days ago that it was then on Red Boards.

After the later night to see in the New Year, no-one was in any hurry once again but we did make it up an hour earlier than the day before (not that was much of a challenge!)

At 2 o'clock we set off by car to take the Alice and Jess back home  - hence the trip to Windsor. They start back at school in two days time so that left them just one day to get ready. The roads were quite clear - almost no freight traffic around and so we arrived just a few moments after four. We stayed to chat and have a cup of tea for an hour before setting off for our return trip. It was by now completely dark but the driving was not as difficult as we thought it might be. Once we had cleared the M5 and onto the A404(M) there was only one spot where there was any traffic at all and that was only a slowing down. No real congestion at the usual trouble spots.

We arrived back at the boat before 19:30 and set about preparing dinner - sausage and mash with a onion, pepper and mushroom sauce that made good use of the remainder of the jar of pizza topping that was not needed the night before!