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mayalld last won the day on July 18

mayalld had the most liked content!

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About mayalld

  • Birthday 29/06/69

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Hyde, Cheshire

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  • Occupation
    IT Support Manager
  • Boat Name
    Mr Jinks
  • Boat Location
    Lyme View, Macclesfield Canal

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  1. Reporting this year's findings ...

    Sadly, I can report that it is even worse than that. Returning from our recent ill-fated trip, we were two boats moving vaguely together, and we both set up the top lock at Hardings Wood at around the same time. As I reached the top, and vacated the lock, there was a boat that had just come through Harecastle approaching, who was clearly engaged on MI5 business, as he wasn't letting on whether he was going down, or turning up the Macc. No matter, I set off, leaving the Son-in-Law coming up the other lock to close my gate if said boat was going up the Macc. It was going up the Macc, and followed me, with Andy then behind him. No matter, we are travelling together, but we aren't going to get all sniffy about a boat between us. He is clearly not impressed that we will be slowing down for moored boats! I sound my horn before the blind bend, and hear no response, so proceed round it with no issue, but there is a boat just round the corner, who has clearly heard my horn, and decided to give way. I thank him and say "there are two boats close behind me", for which he thanks me. The interloper now comes round the corner, and the boat coming the other way sets off with no horn signal and without waiting for the extra boat. There is the inevitable roar of full reverse to avoid a collision. In later discussion of what had happened, the boat coming the other way had told Andy that the second boat (the interloper) had told him that "The boat behind has tied up, you can go through". It would appear that some people don't just lack the decency to pass on this information, they actively go out of their way to give false information and cause issues. With people like that about, it becomes tempting to give horn signals even when another boater has told you the way is clear.
  2. Ashton Canal closure

    Well, the Ashton may well connect to all those canals, but that is only of use if the Ashton canal itself is open and working well. All boats that moor on the Ashton canal moor on the top pound of the canal, so if any one of the 18 locks is out of action, access to the canals you list is tricky. If Marple Locks happen to be closed as well (which they are), those moored on the Ashton are seriously limited in terms of "getting out". Marple Aqueduct is a nice trip, but you can do it there and back in the day, so the only way left is the Huddersfield Narrow.
  3. And that is where the problem lies! Testing some older cars can be a royal PITA for the testing station, both in terms of the effort that they need to put into understanding what to test that can make it uneconomic for the VTS, and possibly having to retain specialist equipment just for the odd older vehicle. It's probably neary 30 years since my dad was an MOT tester, and it was in the early days of rolling road brake testing, but I remember that he had to have a couple of Tapley decelerometers (one in use, and one spare so that he would still have one when the other went away for calibration), because there were a very small number of cars with a belt drive that couldn't be tested on a rolling road. I think that in the 10 years that he had the garage, he conducted 5 tests that required the Tapley Meter, but he had to have a meter calibrated annually. Testing old and unusual cars is a specialist job, and that is what is behind this.
  4. Peak Forest Canal

    It is an interesting theory! However, experience of the flight suggests it to be less likely. If you wait until the gushers subside, the most obvious thing is that the last bit of water to ooze out is a milky colour. Each time the lock fills, water goes through the walls, and each time it empties, it comes back, bringing with it the very fine particles from the infil. on many occasions we have seen sinkholes at the side of a lock where the repeated operation of this process has left a large cavity at the side of the lock with a turf cap that eventually gives way. It is unlikely that there is much fill left in contact with the wall.
  5. Peak Forest Canal

    You could get stuck in worse places!
  6. You missed a trick there mate. You should have diagnosed it as "missing diagnostic socket", and quoted them an eye-watering sum to fit one.
  7. Peak Forest Canal

    Marple Locks are notorious for sink holes, although mostly lower down the flight. This is a curious one, because the wall that has moved is NOT holding back that much land. The towpath side of these locks is embanked down to the road. I suspect that the engineering solution will be to dug out the embankment, jack the stonework back then backfill with concrete, which should fix it permanently. However, my concern here is that the wall has moved with no significant forces behind it. Most logical failure modes here would see the wall moving OUTWARDS rather than inwards. That suggests that the underlying problem is more that the usual void behind a wall. Possibly there is a void opened out beneath the invert, and the invert has fallen, leading to the observed movement. If that is the case, then we are looking at underpinning the invert and wall. A much bigger job.
  8. I suspect that the theory (and it may not work perfectly) is that whilst the MOT test is very good at weeding out the old bangers that people try to run around in rather than buy something newer, that should be off to the scrap yard, there actually comes a point where just keeping a car running becomes an expensive business. So, people may well run around in a clapped out wreck that is 20 years old, because they are just running it into the ground until it just isn't worth repairing any more, which the final MOT failure tends to sort. However, once you have a car that is 40 years old, you have a situation where lots of bits are going to break, and finding parts is likely to be tricky and expensive. If you continue to run that car, then you aren't running it as a cheap banger, because just keeping it capable of motion is expensive. So, by and large, the only people who run 40 year old cars are maintaining them as classic cars
  9. Interfering at locks

    Well, on the rare occasions that we venture into such places; 1) In general I will be with the kids on their boat, so will be sharing with another boat that DOES play by that rule. 2) If invited to share with another boat, I will enquire as to their attitude to winding paddles up fast, and if I'm not happy with it, I will moor up for lunch.
  10. Interfering at locks

    Yes, rule number 1 is my rule, and I apply it to any lock where my boat is in the lock. I care not whether others abide by it when I'm not around, but if my boat is involved, compliance is not optional!! It is also a rule that I would commend to others. I too like to work through locks efficiently. When a lock gate opens, wherever possible, I will be lined up to enter (allowing space for another boat to leave where necessary) Going down, I will step off to close the head gate whilst the boat is moving, then step back on to stop it, so that the crew can be ready at the lower paddles to wind, rather than there being a lag whilst the walk the length of the lock. I always try to manage effort to set the next lock ready (unless there are other boats in the picture, what is the point of getting through a lock fast only to stop whilst you set the next one. I have a particular thing about people who wind paddles down before opening the gates. It isn't on the critical path - wind the paddles down once the gates are open, you have spare time then. All in all, I think I operate locks VERY efficiently, so I dispute your claim that your operation is more expeditious than mine. I suspect that in some other areas my operation is more efficient than yours. My actual fill time may well be seconds slower than yours, but in my view I operate unknown paddles as fast as is reasonable, and the few extra seconds mean that I can ensure safe operation. I win those seconds back elsewhere in the process.
  11. Interfering at locks

    Rule number one; NEVER NEVER let those in a rush operate the lock. Their objectives (to get you through fast) are not the same as yours (to get you through safely). I would agree about anticipate the movement, and I am very used to seeing that the fore and aft trim changes quite a few seconds before the boat starts to move. Your dislike of the click at a time is noted, and you won't ever need to do it, but I will continue to do it! As to "The flow rate must be faster", then clearly this is true, but the point is that the increase in flow isn't huge (possibly 10%) compared to the increase in turbulence. The vast majority of the transit time through a lock is NOT the actual time taken to fill, so it may well be that half paddles then ease them up to full costs 30 seconds on the lock fill time, but I set that against the fact that I am very efficient in getting into and out of a lock (you can waste 30 seconds by winding the paddles down before opening the gates)
  12. Interfering at locks

    It is good that you mention the T&M, because that really is a case in point. Those locks have a very powerful pull indeed, but the irony is that when the lock is empty opening the paddles full gives almost no increase in fill rate, but lots of extra circulation that drags boats about. In fact, whacking those paddles up to much too soon inevitably leads to so much banging about that you need to lower the paddles to recover the situation, which makes it slower. It is also noticeable that what matters with these paddles is NOT how much they are up, but how rapid the change is. If you draw half paddles then at half full or 3/4 full draw the rest, you STILL suffer the effects, but if you draw half paddles, wait a short while, then draw one paddle up a click at a time until fully open and do the same for the other, you will have both paddles open LONG before the lock is half full. It is about NOT doing things entirely by rote, but still having a general plan for how you are going to do things that works on a loop of "do then evaluate"
  13. A memorable trip for all the wrong reasons

    Hi all, firstly, can I say thank you to all who have sent messages of sympathy, whether here or by PM, or via friends of friends. They were hugely appreciated, and in some cases all the more so coming from those I have locked horns with in the past. Friday went as OK as such things can, despite an early morning attempt by the grave to do an impression of a Macclesfield canal bank, as the wall collapsed! The grave digger assures me that when he arrived on Friday morning, the water was deeper than typically found on the Macc... Anyway, it was standing room only in church, what with family, former colleagues, neighbours, and a gaggle of boating friends (and friends who used to be boaters, including Kiki who used to post here), and much eating, drinking and catching up followed. It helped a lot to remember the good times. Of course, the time up to the funeral is the easy time. You are too busy to reflect too much. Afterwards can be different! I'm back at work, and keeping busy, doing all the things in an evening that I usually do. One or two little wobbles like "no, I won't stay for another, I need to get home to Bev", and stopping on the way home from work yesterday to buy her favourite sweets, but I am really fortunate that I'm close to my stepdaughter and her family, so we will get through. In response to a couple of comments.... I will still be boating (either single handed or assisted by a grandson) I will still be posting here (and I will, I am sure, still be opinionated) Thanks to you all. Dave
  14. Those who have read one of my trip reports before and are expecting more of the same will, I am afraid, be enormously disappointed. This will be a very different story. This year's annual fortnight away from work was planned as a trip to Chester, and extended to "might as well visit the NWM". The trip was in some doubt, because Beverley had a week in hospital with a kidney infection, but the doctors were happy that the infection had cleared up, and that a fortnight on the boat would be just the thing. So, July 29th saw us on our way. A slightly different set up than usual, because Bev needed to rest, and I was effectively single handing (although with some help from our 10 year old grandson, seconded from their boat as we were out in convoy). The trip was great, and Bev was making the most of her enforced idleness (first time ever). A planned stopover in Middlewich on the Tuesday to nip back for the regular 3-weekly oncologist appointment went without a hitch, and so on to Ellesmere Port, with a great half day exploring the museum on the Friday, back to Chester on Saturday, and spent most of Sunday exploring Chester, including the magnificent art exhibition in the Cathedral, and a pub lunch in the canalside pub. Monday, things started to go wrong! Bev was lethargic, and became more so throughout the day, and by Monday evening, we were concerned enough to call a friend to meet us on Tuesday morning to run Beverley back to hospital. They ran a whole series of tests, which found nothing, and admitted Beverley. I returned to the boat, and on Wednesday, we set off home doing some longer days to get home as rapidly as possible. When we arrived back, Beverley had been diagnosed with a severe chest infection, and prescribed strong antibiotics, and was a little better, but then the improvement stopped again. A week after leaving the boat, they re-ran the same tests, but with different results. This time, a CT scan showed that the breast cancer that Beverley has been battling for the past 7 years had metastasised to the brain. in multiple areas. Sadly, such a spread is untreatable, and progresses very rapidly indeed, and Beverley passed away on Sunday 20th August, two weeks to the day from our day out enjoying the sights of Chester. She was 60 years old. Whilst we knew that this day would be coming, that Beverley wouldn't reach a ripe old age, and that in marrying somebody 12 years older than myself, it was a fair bet that I would face this one day, we thought we had at least a couple more years to go as the cancer progressed slowly. I'm just so pleased that we decided to go for it, and that Beverley got one last holiday away on the boat, and that she enjoyed herself so much. Beverley's funeral will be on Friday 8th September at 11:30am. Once the sun is over the yardarm, perhaps you would raise a glass to her.
  15. Diesels to be banned

    Not sure that you've thought this through. Even if everything is produced from 3D printers, such devices don't create things out of thin air. The plastic that the printer is going to use to make something will still need to be shipped.