Friday 31 July 2015

A Local Weekend

We plan to stay fairly local to the marina this weekend, and we plan to stay put on the 48 hour moorings in Washingborough for the duration as well so that we can visit the farmers market and music festival that The Ferryboat has kindly organised.

The plan is for us to head own tonight and try and secure a mooring for the weekend, but as a Plan B for if the moorings are already occupied we are dragging the dinghy don with us so that we can nose into the reeds just upstream and still get access to the pontoon. Or Plan C is to secure the stern of the boat to the end of the pontoon. Either way we will get to the farmers market!

Thursday 30 July 2015


Last night we went to a local classic and retro car meet organised by a South Yorkshire group called Motornutz. We have attend before the last time the XR4i was on the road. In the last few years there has been a change of venue to The Waverley at Catcliffe, and the new venue is far more suited to the needs of a group of car enthusiasts and the car park is the ideal spot to gather all of the cars together. So here are a few pictures I took throughout the evening.

Wednesday 29 July 2015

Slow Cooking Again

With the battery charger fully functional again and no worries about recharging the domestic batteries we decided we could start to use the inverter again at the weekend.

No more waiting for the gas kettle to boil, which takes an age in comparison to the little 240v kettle and I could use the slow cooker again. This was the thing I had missed the most.

Usually whilst out cruising on holiday we would have cooked at least one or two meals in the slow cooker, but no, not a single one on our last holiday. 

So on Sunday it was time to change that and after a trip to the butchers we were slow cooking two huge lamb shanks in a leek, carrot, onion and mint gravy. I put these in at about 9.30am and we ate at about 8.30pm, so they had eleven hours in the pot and they were simply divine, the meat dropping off the bone. To keep thing simple I served them with a sweet potato and parsnip mash which was also really very nice.

Now what to rustle up in the slow cooker this weekend? The choice is endless.

Tuesday 28 July 2015

Fixed Or Repaired Daily

You know how just a few short months ago we declared that everything was working on Naughty-Cal? Well we should have known it wouldn't have lasted too long!

Since arriving back from the Fens last week we have started making a new list of jobs that need sorting out.

The most important of which for our immediate needs was getting the battery charger working again. We had already proven it wasn't the charger at fault on Friday evening by connecting it directly to the batteries, so on Sunday Liam delved into the engine bay and set about finding the fault in the wiring. It took a good hour or so but eventually the fault was tracked down to some corroded wires and connections. Once replaced the charger sprang into life and set about recharging the batteries once more. Now we need to hope that the batteries have not suffered too badly from their month of not really being fully charged!

Another job on the list is replacing the seals on the raw water pump, again. This seems to be a reoccuring problem, so this time we are going to get a full rebuild kit for the pump instead of just the seals and hopefully this should cure the leak for a bit longer then 18 months this time. At present the leak is not bad enough to stop us using the boat, it is just a very slight drip over a few hours but it won't get any better on its own so it needs fixing.

And lastly, and most probably the most difficult of the jobs is taking the turbo charger off to send it away for refurbishment. We suffered a complete loss of power on our return journey across the Wash a couple of weeks ago and had to limp back at 5 knots, which in the conditions we had leaving Kings Lynn was less then pleasant to say the least. The only indication of anything amiss, apart from the sudden loss of power, is oil in the air box, which leads us to believe that the turbo is playing up. Getting it refurbished is not a difficult or expensive job, getting it off the engine in the tight confines of Cal's engine bay however could prove to be a tricky process. We have decided that as Cal is coming out of the water again for the winter for three months we will wait until she is ashore before trying to take the turbo off. We have no more big trips planned, so it is slow pottering around for us for a while!

Monday 27 July 2015

Fiskerton Fen BBQ

It was a spur of the moment decision, but on Saturday afternoon a few of us headed off to Fiskerton Fen to have yet another BBQ.

We seem to have had quite a few BBQ's so far this year!.

The girls decided we needed table decorations.

Young Jack had his first in after mistaking the weed behind the pontoons for grass!

Not sure how many BBQ's we need for 8 people!.

The clouds start rolling in.

But the BBQ must go on!

Definitely looks like rain.

 The rains on its way.

Sunday 26 July 2015

Looks like Rain

On the back of a dry weather forecast we decided to have a bbq at Fiskerton Fen last night.

Looks like rain!

Saturday 25 July 2015

Not So Confused. Com

We have solved the riddle of the dodgy battery charger at last.  Well I say dodgy battery charger,  but it is actually a dodgy wire or connection from the charger to the batteries.

Last night Liam connected the charger directly to the batteries and hey presto,  it works a treat.

So right now the batteries are happily charging away and when we get back to the marina on Sunday morning we will renew the connections and wiring and hopefully have everything up and running again as it should be.

We just have a spare battery charger now!

Friday 24 July 2015

We paid Naughty-Cal a visit last night to fit the new battery charger and get it up and running so that we could have some charge in the batteries for the weekend, or so we thought!

With much cursing and swearing, Liam spent a good hour in the engine bay, fiddling with wires and connections at arms length before declaring it installed. 

We plug in the boat, turn on the battery charger and watch the ammeter and voltmeter with bated breath................and nothing happens. Hmm. Heads scratched, wiring to the charger checked, all seems good, the charger claims to be charging the batteries but still no sign on the ammeter or voltmeter. 

It was getting a bit late in the day now for further fiddling, the light was fading and Liam had had enough, so we shut the engine hatch, reassemble the cockpit upholstery and sit down to think about what could possibly be amiss now. 

Our current thinking is perhaps a fault with the wiring to the ammeter and voltmeter which is giving false readings on the gauges. We will find out tonight when we get back to the boat as we have left the boat plugged in with the charger turned on and the fridge turned on. Now according to the ammeter and voltmeter the batteries were registering just 12v this morning, pretty damn flat, so in theory if the ammeter and voltmeter are right the batteries will be completely dead this evening when we get back to the boat. On the other hand if our theory is right and the wiring to the ammeter is at fault then the batteries will still be working the fridge and the battery charger should have switched itself into float mode. I suppose we will find out tonight who is right!

It does look as though we have gone the long, and expensive way around finding out the charger wasn't at fault though. Liam has taken our old Newmar charger to work and found it is functioning as it should be, currently charging up a battery on a classic car in the workshop. Oops!

Looks like we now have two battery chargers!

Thursday 23 July 2015

The Fens 2015 - Part 5

Part 5
Denver to Kings Lynn

 Out onto the tidal river.

 Gloomy skies.

 A bit more headroom under the bridges today with a much smaller tide.

 That ruined church again.

 Another bridge.

 The approach to Kings Lynn.

After a long split days cruising a good curry is in order.

A days shore leave in Kings Lynn

 Another grey gloomy start to the day.

 The Mariotts Warehouse on the quayside.

 Lovely old buildings around the town.

 Greyfriars tower.

 The Walks.

 The sun has come out.

Looking back upstream.

Kings Lynn to Boston

 Commercial vessel leaving Lynn docks.

 A bit splashy in the Wash at 6 knots. That's a story for another day.

 Calming down.

 Nice and smooth in our chosen anchorage. Waiting for the next tide into Boston.

 Black Buoy.

 Liam rowing his dinghy at low water as it is too shallow to use the engine!

 Seals sunbathing.

 Tabs Head at the mouth of the Witham

 Some company up the cut.

 High and Dry.

Creeping into Boston on low tide.

Boston to Burton Waters.

 Back on non tidal waters.

 Approaching Antons Gowt.

 Sunset over Langrick.

 Witham and Blues Steak House.

 Busy moorings at Kirkstead Bridge.

 Bardney Lock.

 Washingborough for our final evening.

 On the approach to Lincoln.

 Through Lincoln city centre.

 Approaching the Glory Hole.

Under the bridge.

Total Miles = 304 Miles
Total Locks = 16 Locks