Sunday, 31 May 2015

Wet Foot

Getting out of bed in the morning and getting a wet foot is not a good experience , but when you are on a boat alarm bells immediately start ringing in your head. Are we sinking? , Has Hamish had an accident in the night?. Has a water pipe or the water tank sprung a leak?

This lovely looking contraption is our twin coil Calorifier and is fitted under our bed. Its main purpose is to provide us with hot water. There are 3 ways of heating the domestic water on Inca. The 1st is by the engine where the engine cooling water goes through coils in the calorifier. Then we have a Webasto which is similar to a boiler in a house that does are central heating radiators and also goes through separate coils in the calorifier to heat the water. Then finally we have a 1kw immersion heating element that we use when we are in marinas and plugged into the mains.
We eventually discovered that the calorifier had sprung a leak from around a weld where the emersion element was fitted. No problem I thought as I have some chemical metal that would surely seal it. After applying the chemical metal and leaving it a few hours to harden fully we put the water pump back on only for the leak to be worse than it was before. I think that by using some sand paper to make a key for the chemical metal to stick to I made it worse.
It was now essential to get it replaced as soon as possible . After talking to several local boaters most of them recommended The Boatyard at Hilperton where we had got the cheap diesel. So after a phone call they managed to fit us in within a couple of days.

The plan was to have dropped down the locks at Bath and maybe go all the way to Bristol ,which Carolyn wasn't very happy about doing. So now with the calorifier leaking so badly and only being able to use the water pump for very short periods it was decided to forget going to Bristol on this trip to the K and A.
Unfortunately we haven't spent as long in Bath as we wanted but needs must and we pull pins and head through Cleveland tunnel before winding and then heading back East towards Hilperton.

Carolyn Curly and Hamish on swing bridge duty on route to Bradford on Avon .

Cool Dude Hamish. (picture and hat by his best friend Curly)

An overnight stop at Bradford on Avon as we head towards Hilperton and Curly takes me to the park beside the canal for a bit of fun.

At the Boatyard the next morning and owner Spencer gets the old calorifier out only to find that it had been repaired before on the other side to where we have the leak.

My failed attempt at trying to repair the leak with chemical metal.

The new calorifier in position and because its different to the old one some of the pipework and wiring have to be altered. We have also had isolation valves fitted on all of the pipes entering and leaving the calorifier which will make it a lot easier to deal with problems in the future.
Eventually after several hours of work and being £548 lighter in the wallet (ouch that hurt) its all fitted and working fine with no leaks .

We have a few more days with Curly before she heads back to Devon for the rest of her summer school term, so we will start to do a few miles heading back towards the river Thames. Then no doubt she will be back up again at the end of July.
Happy  Days


  1. nice one loved the picture of Hamish xx

  2. I don't know if you remember Chris and I and our border collie, Monty? We met you in April 2013 on the Tardebigge flight just after Hamish had fallen in? I have been reading your adventures on the K & A with interest as we hope to be there in early July. Our plans are to attend the Worcester boat festival on 13/14 June, head for Sharpness, pick up a pilot and go down the Severn to Portishead, then into Bristol and on to the K & A. I have picked up some very useful information and tips re mooring, pubs and boats to avoid etc from yourselves and nb Oakfield. We will be travelling with nb Cleddau ( Have fun with Curly - aren't grandchildren great even if they are exhausting!! Jennie

    1. Hi Jennie and Chris. Yes we do remember you and follow your blog. Good luck on the Severn, I only wish I could talk Carolyn in to doing it..Maybe one day.The biggest problem on the K and A is the mooring situation and it gets even worse once you have passed Devizes and are heading towards Readiing.the canal also changes once you go through Newbury and head towards the Thames. Apart from that and the miles of moored boats that never seem to move its a great canal. Enjoy and hope to meet up again one day ..Gary and Carolyn

    2. nb Cleddau used to be moored on the K & A, so we have done all of it with them over the years bar the bit from Bristol to Bath. Mind you it was a few years ago, so I am sure we will find a lot more moored boats!

    3. Hi Jennie..As I said its a great canal and it would be good to know if it has changed since you were last on it. Lots of people have told us it is getting worse and less maintenance is being carried out. We have enjoyed it so far and hope you have a good time when you get here.