Boating

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CribBlog July 22 Back on the move

A short passage up to the visitor moorings at Woolhampton. Nice to be moving again pleasantly surprised by how she handles now.

I had the propellor re-furbished and this has reduced the vibration considerably AND improved her behavior when going astern. Why am I surprised by this? It cost enough to get it done but the improvement is noticable. What is also noticeable is that the gas locker bottoms are now a source of vibration noise and will need to be damped. [I have some very heavy rubber sheet at home which should do this.] The dry weather has also shrunk all the floorboards, which now rattle and vibrate once the revs rise.

When Dave at Almermaston Wharf boatyard suggested fitting a side fuel tank I was a little concerned as to what this might do to the trim. In fact, the whole job has improved the trim both laterally and fore and aft. The extra bouyancy of the gas lockers and [empty] old fuel tank enable the stern to float higher than it used to do. This might be a reason for the improved performance when going astern. The extra weight to starboard has her floating level I suppose balancing fridge and cooker, but the batteries are on that side too. I keep my tools aand other heavy kit on the starboard side, to correct the trim, and had thought that I might need to move them, but this seems to have trimmed her up perfectly.

So there have been some unexpected benefits from what started off as a remedial excercise.

Its difficult to judge how fast one is going at the moment, there is a downstream current, the engine is quieter thanks to last summer's works and the prop is better balanced. My camera has a speedommeter app, which makes me think that it is easy to go too fast without being aware of it. If I reduce the vibration this could be more of a problem.

Not many pics below, I was on my own, barely a of day actual boating, and two very solid days of scrubbing and cleaning. She is now in a state where she is just in need of a clean. The outside was a struggle, the bitchumen dust from boats being cleaned ready for blacking on the hard, got baked to the surface in the hot sun. The welding produces a dust of its own. The inside presentebted a similar problem so we have had a big clear out and more is needed. Why is it that I seem to have more drinks glasses than your average pub but a dearth of plates? [Could be that there is a reason but please don't send your suggestions.

Walked back for the car and decided that I would go to the Kennet and Aon visitor centre, widly advertised on local roads. Walked in and asked 'Where is it' - blank look from the proprieter 'Oh the visitor centre, well we hope to have one one day but for now this is just a tea room'

Drove back to Woolhampton and discovered the Row Barge pub, not very difficult, spent several happy hours here with excellent real ale. Was amused to see the sign outside the pub though, explaining how a pub operates...you go to the bar.. I would have never guessed.

Another intriguing feature of Woolhampton is the emporium of Fitelle, this is to be found in a n old building with a crunbling corrugated iron roof near the town centre. The building houses an unexpected industry for its appearance, hand fitted bras. When I showed it to Terry he had a sudden fantasy of himself aged about 13 being quizzed by his headmaster as to what he would lime to do when he grew up. He decided that his headmaster would not have been impressed. [but we were]


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Ready to leave Almermaston Wharf boatyard with the swing bridge ahead..


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The swing bridge, with barriers and lights.


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Mikron theatre group blocking the bridge and lock moorings for Woolhampton Lock and swing bridge. Difficult for the single hander with them here..


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On the visitor moorings at Woolhampton.


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Walked back for the car at Aldermaston and decided that I would visit the much advertised visitor centre.


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The Row Barge.


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How to operate a pub.


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Fitelle.


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