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nicknorman last won the day on May 16

nicknorman had the most liked content!

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  • Gender
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  • Interests
    Electronics, gliding, motorbikes

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    helicopter pilot - retired
  • Boat Name
  • Boat Location
    Fazeley Mill Marina, Tamworth

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  1. trailer with surge brakes

    Perhaps it depends on how the mass is distributed rather than the relationship between the axle and the centre of gravity? Glider trailers are pretty long for the mass, I can imagine a generator being much shorter thus with a smaller radius of gyration. It will also depend on the towing vehicle since the instability I refer to arises from the trailer affecting the vehicle, rather than the trailer's stability in its own right.
  2. That is up to you. If you choose never to check the red flag, you will run out at a bad moment. If you choose to check the red flag from time to time (eg when filling up with diesel at a location also selling gas) you will never run out at a bad time.
  3. K&A Trip planned

    Ok so today we've come up Caen Hill and decided to cruise quite late, just tied up at Honeystreet on the last available VM. Well OK, it does seem much better going this way. I recall a continuous line of boats starting shortly after Horton and finishing beyond Honeystreet. Either I am misrembering or they have all moved somewhere else. All Cannings was "full", Honeystreet is "full" but in between, yes we spent a lot of time NOT at tickover. It really wasn't too bad. No-one shouted, no-one blanked us, several people exchanged pleasantries. I think they must have put something in the water! It just goes to show that meeting a few obnoxious people can really colour ones judgement.
  4. K&A Trip planned

    Anyway, on a more positive note, we stopped for diesel yesterday at Hilperton, not at the boatyard, but at a coal yard just a few yards further east. Diesel 65p and pumpout £14 which I think is a bargain round these parts! And a very pleasant and helpful chap running it too.
  5. K&A Trip planned

    I think they probably did. It was reopened in 1990, long after decorative "rivets" were thought of. Anyway, talking of decorative rivets, can someone tell me if RW Davis Northwich Trader boats are actually riveted together? As far as I can tell, they aren't, but they do have far more of a "rivet"-fest than Hudson boats. And yet nobody picks on them for ridicule. Why is that?
  6. K&A Trip planned

    And also, one of the irritations is that outside the really congested bits where everyone is nose to tail, boats tend to moor with about 2 boat lengths between each one so it is impractical to get out of tickover in the short gaps between. It's only a big deal because it goes on for most of the 20 miles.
  7. K&A Trip planned

    Yes, let me rephrase that - we would be doing 20 miles tomorrow if it didn't all have to be done at tickover! Anyway, just passed Horton bridge. There is a long stretch of 48 hr visitor moorings. Totally empty at 17:39 mid-summer. But right off the end of the VMs, a long line of moored boats. Showing that the on-line-static-resident boaters outnumber the travelling boaters by probably 100 to 1. Maybe that's OK but I don't think it is what the people who spent chunks of their lives restoring the canal, had in mind.
  8. We have one of these. It's worked perfectly for 7 years so far: https://thecaravanwarehouse.co.uk/Products/change-over-regulators/LPG001?gclid=CjwKCAjwoNrMBRB4EiwA_ODYvwTLo8HLhZgnC0xMW5C-PjL9H-MHeTQGMPUG9lVIxrn6fPl2h7WU3RoC98UQAvD_BwE Its obviously not essential to have an automatic changeover, but if you don't you can guarantee the gas will run out mid shower/baking/dinner-making and it will be dark and bucketing down outside.
  9. K&A Trip planned

    Oh and as to the 20 miles a year rule. That is a laugh! We are going to do 20 miles tomorrow!
  10. K&A Trip planned

    How I came to that conclusion seems to be reinforced by your answer! You say it's popular with cruising boaters but that isn't born out by the views of the people we've spoken to. A limited sample, of course. But the very fact that we see far fewer moving non-hire boats than we would expect to see pretty much anywhere in mid summer, tells a story. Yes we enjoyed the Avon, and Bristol was great. On the way down we found the long pound very busy with moored boats, as I recall we virtually never got out of tickover but perhaps I am misremembering, it was after all last week! I intend to make a count this time, and we have just set off from Devizes top lock. Devizes bottom to Bath was actually not too bad except at Bathampton, long stretches around the aqueducts quite free of moored boats. So for us, it is the long pound that I'm not looking forward to. But I'll report back. The worst part of the whole experience is the palpable resentment and hostility displayed by many of the moored boaters. If someone is moored, I don't expect them to pop out of their boats every time a boat goes past to wave hello. But if they are out on their boat and staring at us, it is plain rude to just carry in staring blankly after we have said "Hi", smiled and waved. We have had this behaviour over and over again down here, something you virtually never see elsewhere on the canals. It really stands out. But of course there are some nice people too, we came up the first bit of the locks today with a young couple who lived aboard and CCed solely on KandA, they had a pretty tatty boat but I certainly wouldn't hold that against them. They were pleasant, chatty, and interested in comparing our lifestyles. Great, but unfortunately for every one of them there seem to be several obnoxious, rude and chip-shouldered ones.
  11. trailer with surge brakes

    In my opinion it's a (very popular) myth to say that having lots of nose weight makes a combination more stable. If there is a lot of weight in the nose, when the combination corners (or starts a weave) the towbar pushes the rear of the car in the opposite direction giving a tendency to "oversteer", and eventually in extremes to jackknife. In my experience of towing numerous glider trailers (which tend to be very long) the combination is most stable when there is minimal weight on the tow bar. But obviously one doesn't want negative weight on the towbar.
  12. K&A Trip planned

    It's interesting that you have an absolute presumption that static boats take precedence over moving boats. Years ago when the canals were full of fully laden working narrowboats and barges, I can't imagine they slowed down if there was a moored boat. But we have somehow gone from there to presuming that it is the moving boat's responsibility to avoid disturbing the static boat, rather than the static boat's responsibility to moor such that moving boats don't affect it. Weird! if the KandA's banks are soft (which they are) and pins pull out, perhaps the answer is that it isn't suitable for mooring and folk shouldn't moor there? Or at the very least, it should be up to both parties to act reasonably. But nearly all the boats moored "in the rough" we have passed, have very slack lines. Many of them at 90degrees to the boat - It seems to be how it's done on the KandA. Once the lines are slack, a moored boat can pick up speed from the suction of a passing boat, and then there is a large force when the line pulls tight, which pulls the pin through the ground until with a bit of repetition, it comes out. Then there are the unsuitable round-sided boats that are pretty difficult to moor securely to a bank even with the best of intentions. Apparently we are supposed to crawl past them especially slowly, because they have chosen to moor an unsuitable boat on a canal. We did crawl the entire way from Hungerford to Bath at tickover. On the way back, I think we will go a little faster, not unreasonably so, not such that properly moored boats will be unaffected. But I'm sure we will leave a trail of boats in the middle of the cut, behind us. Oh and on our limited experience of the KandA, we haven't seen hire boats travelling at anything above tickover past moored boats. No doubt there is the odd rogue, but I think hire boats on the KandA are resented more because they want to move, rather than because they tend to move unreasonably fast.
  13. No, lithiums have a number of advantages over lead acid including not minding not being fully charged, not minding being fully discharged, left flat etc. The disadvantage is of course the cost! And that they don't fade out when fully discharged, they just stop working.
  14. The current seems very low to me. Even though the batteries may be at 90% SoC, with such a large bank I'd expect the surface charge demand to be the max alternator output. Just for clarity, there is no direct relationship between present SoC and charging current - it depends on "how you got there". So a battery discharged to 50% and then recharged, might well have quite a low charge current by the time the SoC gets to 90%. But a battery that has just been discharged to 90% SoC will have a very high charge current when first put on charge. I'd check for any voltage drop in the charging circuit - ie check the voltage across the alternator vs the voltage across the battery, during the early stages of charge when the current is maximum. If there is a significant difference between the voltages, that points to a poor / high resistance connection or inadequate wiring. if there isnt, I'd suspect a partial alternator failure such as a blown diode.
  15. With our AH counter, the charge required to replace the consumed charge is roughly 6% more. Which is not a huge difference between AH out and in. There is no reason why your AH counter shouldn't be similar. Unless it is mis-wired! Regarding your alternator charge current, if it's only starting out at 30A for such a big battery bank, it is either a very small alternator, the engine revs were too low, or there is a blown diode in the alternator. By comparison, when I start the engine with our 450AH bank I get an initial current of 140A or so, settling at perhaps 100A after 10 minutes. We have a big modern alternator though. What alternator do you have? Your low charge current and voltage could simply be because it's an ancient alternator. But whatever, if the voltage is only reaching 14.05v at a very low current, you are not going to be able to,properly charge your batteries with your engine, especially in winter when the solar won't be helping much. Even 14.4v is on the low side for modern leisure batteries. All that of course presumes that you are correctly measuring voltage and current and in fact we can already be pretty sure that you aren't measuring the latter correctly (because the AH counter measurements don't balance). Most alternators can't be adjusted, but with some it is possible to fit a regulator that is set to a higher voltage. Also, low voltage and current could be due to poor wiring between alternator and batteries.