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Hi there folks,

Apologies for being another person looking for information/ history on their new purchase but I have just bought a River class butty by the name of Yeo.
 I know these dustbin boats arent the most revered of all historic craft (in fact, being younger than 1948 they dont even qualify for historic license discount) but im hoping to do right by this boat and put her back to working trim, albeit with a bit of an 'under bluetops' conversion.

If anyone has any information or photos of this boat I would be really grateful as there seems very little online that I can find so far.

She seems to have had some extensive work in the past (im guessing in the late 80s) including a nice mahogany and oak cabin extension and having a perkins 4108 with hydraulic drive fitted. If it were at all possible to find out who did the engine install I would be blown away, the system works right now but I would eventually like to move the engine, rebuild the stern to its original butty shape and reconfigure the system into the rudder in the same way as Hampton has so finding that original engineer would save alot of guesswork and research about the old system.

Secondly, im hoping to use the hydraulic system to power a generator and also two rams which will raise and lower the bluetops to offer headroom below when in use but can be lowered when travelling or wanting to look trad when other older boats are around :)  Has anyone fitted extra systems like these to their hydraulic drive? Id love to chat if so!

 

Thanks everyone..

  • Greenie 1

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Are you intending to use your blue tops as a cabin? if yes & thinking of raising/lowering I think you would have a real problem with water ingress  The reason I say this I was contracted to the gas line laying in the towpaths of the BCN & my boat (Josher) was employed as tug, cook boat & general parts carrier, I 'obtained a couple of blur tops to make a shelter for the cooking equipment  & for being watertight were a complete disaster ended clothing them over with a section  of side & top cloths  having them movable I would have thought would increase your hassle factor with them Good luck with your project

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3 hours ago, sparrowcycles said:

Secondly, im hoping to use the hydraulic system to power a generator and also two rams which will raise and lower the bluetops to offer headroom below when in use but can be lowered when travelling or wanting to look trad when other older boats are around :) 

I can't actually get a feel for what you would be trying to achieve by this?

So with the "blue tops" jacked up (say) a foot above where they would normally sit on the gunwales, you then have a large open gap equivalent to the amount you have raised them by?

What am I missing?

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Nice boat and the raising the blue tops cabin is a novel idea. You'd need some sort of sliding or concertina type arrangement I suppose.


Or maybe some sort of roller shutter type system like you get over shop windows.


Or a steel cabin? Or if you are unusually tall then perhaps some sort of leg surgery. Or another boat ?

 

 

 

As for being "blown away" by details of the boat I would have thought Pete Harrison may be able to oblige if he's not too busy burning petrol.

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I'm 5' 10½" in my socks, and with blue tops on part of the hold of a middle Northwich, I had no trouble in standing full height with them set on the gunnel - with my boots on. Blue tops are rain proof, but not hose or bucklet of water proof. Any hydraulic apparatus to gain a few inches will be excessively expensive, and rather ludicrous to boot. Also, even if fitted successfully, almost certainly will be replaced by a future owner. Just a thought.

Edited by Derek R.

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13 hours ago, X Alan W said:

Are you intending to use your blue tops as a cabin? if yes & thinking of raising/lowering I think you would have a real problem with water ingress  The reason I say this I was contracted to the gas line laying in the towpaths of the BCN & my boat (Josher) was employed as tug, cook boat & general parts carrier, I 'obtained a couple of blur tops to make a shelter for the cooking equipment  & for being watertight were a complete disaster 

Thanks for the advice on that, I'm planning to make a steel top with windows and vents that fits under the bluetops so hopefully water ingress from there shouldn't be a problem. 

 

The main thing, as per Alan finchers reply, is the open side section that would be exposed when raised, my plan is to have the steel cabin walls extend into the hold and have a rubber sliding section or skirt that will trail over the lip on the hold to stop rain entering down that face.

11 hours ago, Derek R. said:

I'm 5' 10½" in my socks, and with blue tops on part of the hold of a middle Northwich, I had no trouble in standing full height with them set on the gunnel - with my boots on. Blue tops are rain proof, but not hose or bucklet of water proof. Any hydraulic apparatus to gain a few inches will be excessively expensive, and rather ludicrous to boot. Also, even if fitted successfully, almost certainly will be replaced by a future owner. Just a thought.

Thanks, I'm the same height and can't stand under the blue tops, I'd like to raise them by 8" and am pretty sure the system I'm planning will work reliably and be fun to make, surely that's the main thing.

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It's a brave idea, but sounds like you are re-inventing the wheel with corners.

I'm missing something here: that you are intending to build a steel cabin beneath the blue tops, but have the blue tops elevate. Does that infer that the steel cabin also elevates? This is getting complicated. I envisage rust, moss, and other winblown debris (not to mention vandals) ingressing the sliding mechanism that runs the length of the cabin, and servicing the space twixt blue tops and steel cabin. How often is it planned to use this mechanism in reality? As the ongoing maintenance costs may reflect an unforseen cost which prospective future owners (and you will sell it on at some point) may view as a white elephant. I hope it doesn't turn out to be a project like the Foxton Inclined Plane. It will certainly give you hours (years?) of 'fun', and as it is your chosen project I wish you well with it. Not much a thread on Historic & Heritage boats can offer much advice methinks! Look to Showmen's caravans for extending body sections (theirs generally go out sideways than upwards, but the basics are similar).

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16 minutes ago, Derek R. said:

It's a brave idea, but sounds like you are re-inventing the wheel with corners.

I'm missing something here: that you are intending to build a steel cabin beneath the blue tops, but have the blue tops elevate. Does that infer that the steel cabin also elevates? This is getting complicated. I envisage rust, moss, and other winblown debris (not to mention vandals) ingressing the sliding mechanism that runs the length of the cabin, and servicing the space twixt blue tops and steel cabin. How often is it planned to use this mechanism in reality? As the ongoing maintenance costs may reflect an unforseen cost which prospective future owners (and you will sell it on at some point) may view as a white elephant. I hope it doesn't turn out to be a project like the Foxton Inclined Plane. It will certainly give you hours (years?) of 'fun', and as it is your chosen project I wish you well with it. Not much a thread on Historic & Heritage boats can offer much advice methinks! Look to Showmen's caravans for extending body sections (theirs generally go out sideways than upwards, but the basics are similar).

 

Thanks for your input, I dont think the idea brave or complicated, the steel roof will raise and its exposed side will be covered by the sliding rubber valance that is fitted to the gunwale lip.

I think I was mainly posting to find any history on Yeo and if possible to track down the mechanic who installed its current hydraulic system, it may be better that I PM Mr Pete harrison for these details. Further to that, if anyone has any actual experience of adding extra hydraulic systems to their drive I would be really happy to hear from them.

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Why not fill the hold with neatly stacked steel barrels welded into place.  Then with a gas axe crawl in underneath them and hollow out the space you want? From the outside you'll have a boat that looks as if it's loaded with cargo even though the depth in the water will look odd. Inside however you'll have a dark gloomy cabin with so many jagged edges that you'll need to carry a complete blood transfusion unit in the back cabin.

Another idea might be to revert to a horse drawn version. Only have a specially made tent in the shape of a horse.  Then at the end of the day you erect your horse and sleep in that.

Being a fan of hydraulics I've always wanted to buy a Thames Sailing Barge and insert piano lid hinges stem and stern.  Then using hydraulic rams I'd pull the sides in so I could get to the top of Napton.  At that point I'd shove them back out again and leave everybody scratching their heads.  Imagine the fun when you turned up at Banbury and asked to use Tooley's?

However a genuinely historical version would be to go the Harbour Master route. I'm sure standing next to a clattering multi cylinder diesel engine just over head height all day has a lot of merit in it.

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On 12/6/2017 at 17:10, sparrowcycles said:

 


 I know these dustbin boats arent the most revered of all historic craft (in fact, being younger than 1948 they dont even qualify for historic licence discount) but im hoping to do right by this boat and put her back to working trim, albeit with a bit of an 'under bluetops' conversion.

 

 

The 1948 cut off point no longer applies.  The CRT guidance notes say: "The basic structure of the boat should be more than fifty years old. Some later modifications may be acceptable but substantially altered boats will not be eligible for the discount."

You could try registering with National Historic Ships (no cost) which helps I believe.

regards

David L

 
 

 

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9 hours ago, fanshaft said:

The 1948 cut off point no longer applies.  The CRT guidance notes say: "The basic structure of the boat should be more than fifty years old. Some later modifications may be acceptable but substantially altered boats will not be eligible for the discount."

You could try registering with National Historic Ships (no cost) which helps I believe.

regards

David L

 
 

 

Thankyou, David. Thats a great help, I will do just that.

 

regards, steve

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Apologies for this, and please ignore the association with politics - it's the engineering aspect that is relevant. It shows the fascination of seeking complex alternatives to non-problems.

The device is intruiging and fascinating to watch, much like the curling and uncurling bridge in Paddington basin. But the result of the complex arrangement is a device far less efficient than the wheel which is here replaced (or a swing or lift bridge). Inginuity and invention at work - yes, but a practical end result? It looks like hard work to drive the pedals around, and the frailty would show on a rough surface. The fact that it 'can' be done over-rides - dare I say - commonsense?

 

 

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What you need a a few old jcb arm rams conceted to a hydrolic drive run off the engine or a seperate geni.

Put a angled 45 deg lip facing up from the edge of the open part of the hull with a soft rubber or silicone edge (blue tops down cover the lip and edge)

Then inside the open hull a 2 foot sheet of steel attached to the top of the blue tops and on the bottom the jcb rams the jcb rams then sit on the floor,

As you extend the jcb rams this pushes the sheet metal up raising the blue tops the 45deg lip and silicone rub up the side of the sheet keeping it fairly water tight raise till at desired hight, to lower just lower the rams till they stop, it wont be 100% water tight but will be semi cheap to create and get the desired affect.

For any long time the rams are up to make more water tight you could always put grease between the rubber and sheet metal.

The final option rather than the rubber seal it to put a clear plastic to the inside edge of the blue top and just on the outside of the hold lip but in enough its covered by the blue tops when down cut to the right hight for your rams fully up so you get a strait clear plastic outside window keeps it water tight and lets light in threw your port holes in your sheet metal, a bit like what you got on vw camper van roofs but made of clear plastic like what you get on boat canopy covers.

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On 02/01/2018 at 01:04, billybobbooth said:

What you need a a few old jcb arm rams conceted to a hydrolic drive run off the engine or a seperate geni.

Put a angled 45 deg lip facing up from the edge of the open part of the hull with a soft rubber or silicone edge (blue tops down cover the lip and edge)

Then inside the open hull a 2 foot sheet of steel attached to the top of the blue tops and on the bottom the jcb rams the jcb rams then sit on the floor,

As you extend the jcb rams this pushes the sheet metal up raising the blue tops the 45deg lip and silicone rub up the side of the sheet keeping it fairly water tight raise till at desired hight, to lower just lower the rams till they stop, it wont be 100% water tight but will be semi cheap to create and get the desired affect.

For any long time the rams are up to make more water tight you could always put grease between the rubber and sheet metal.

The final option rather than the rubber seal it to put a clear plastic to the inside edge of the blue top and just on the outside of the hold lip but in enough its covered by the blue tops when down cut to the right hight for your rams fully up so you get a strait clear plastic outside window keeps it water tight and lets light in threw your port holes in your sheet metal, a bit like what you got on vw camper van roofs but made of clear plastic like what you get on boat canopy covers.

Thanks mate that's basically what I'm planning, I have two ex BW dredger rams and am planning to make an EPDM rubber lip that will extend past the upstand in the hold when extended upwards but can fold in when dropped down. 

Let's see how it goes! 

 

S

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On 12/6/2017 at 17:10, sparrowcycles said:

Hi there folks,

Apologies for being another person looking for information/ history on their new purchase but I have just bought a River class butty by the name of Yeo.
 I know these dustbin boats arent the most revered of all historic craft (in fact, being younger than 1948 they dont even qualify for historic license discount) but im hoping to do right by this boat and put her back to working trim, albeit with a bit of an 'under bluetops' conversion.

If anyone has any information or photos of this boat I would be really grateful as there seems very little online that I can find so far.

She seems to have had some extensive work in the past (im guessing in the late 80s) including a nice mahogany and oak cabin extension and having a perkins 4108 with hydraulic drive fitted. If it were at all possible to find out who did the engine install I would be blown away, the system works right now but I would eventually like to move the engine, rebuild the stern to its original butty shape and reconfigure the system into the rudder in the same way as Hampton has so finding that original engineer would save alot of guesswork and research about the old system.

Secondly, im hoping to use the hydraulic system to power a generator and also two rams which will raise and lower the bluetops to offer headroom below when in use but can be lowered when travelling or wanting to look trad when other older boats are around :)  Has anyone fitted extra systems like these to their hydraulic drive? Id love to chat if so!

 

Thanks everyone..

And why not? Go for it - I'm about to lavish a lot of attention on a 1972 hire boat, probably go back to original livery (although without the company name) replacement authentic Lister ST2 etc. It's what we do!

On 12/9/2017 at 23:39, fanshaft said:

The 1948 cut off point no longer applies.  The CRT guidance notes say: "The basic structure of the boat should be more than fifty years old. Some later modifications may be acceptable but substantially altered boats will not be eligible for the discount."

You could try registering with National Historic Ships (no cost) which helps I believe.

regards

David L

 
 

 

I didn't know that - I'll bear in in mind for Lutine's lap  of honour on her 50th birthday (not sure what I'll be doing a lap of though)

 

On 12/12/2017 at 07:48, Derek R. said:

Apologies for this, and please ignore the association with politics - it's the engineering aspect that is relevant. It shows the fascination of seeking complex alternatives to non-problems.

The device is intruiging and fascinating to watch, much like the curling and uncurling bridge in Paddington basin. But the result of the complex arrangement is a device far less efficient than the wheel which is here replaced (or a swing or lift bridge). Inginuity and invention at work - yes, but a practical end result? It looks like hard work to drive the pedals around, and the frailty would show on a rough surface. The fact that it 'can' be done over-rides - dare I say - commonsense?

 

 

:clapping::lol::clapping:I want one! Half a dozen in fact, there'd be a rental market in Frome for those! :lol:

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