Friday, 26 December 2008

An Update

Not much has happened to be honest, infact ive not personaly been on the boat since the last post although i probeberbly will before the end of the Christmas hol's.

However shes still afloat and well! Prehaps over spring some work will be done on her to finish the refit on the back cabin, give her a good clean up and maybe improve the engines exhaust vacuum leak (joys of finding vac leaks).

No firm plans have been formed for next year, but a trip up the Chesterfeild has been mooted, possibly co-insiding with the IWA campaign rally, possaibly going via the SBA trentlock rally on the way back down, and maybe even the IWA National at redhill after that. And theres always the work at liverpool to visit. Who knows!!

Cheeky photo of me and the Kitcar because boating it so quite!

Saturday, 25 October 2008


EA is now home in Cheshire.

Saturday, 4 October 2008

Emilyanne on the Rochdale.

Im now back in loughborough at university (term started monday just gone) and so the boat is having a few days rest while i get sorted at loughborough, tom goes to see his brother on anglesea!

Again, im sorry theres no photos yet. I really will get them up, and work through the backlog of rather lacking posts. But for now thats where we're upto.

The westfield is still a non runner atm also.

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Highest steamboat.

Last night we belive we where the highest steam boat in the country, certaily the highest steam narrowboat as we traveled trans-pennine through the standedge tunnel. The longest, highest, deepest canal tunnel ever built

More later. Photos to follow...

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Back on land for a few days.

Having being boating since Sunday of last week im now back home for two or three days before our passage through the Standedge tunnel.

We had an excellent run up from shackerstone, everything well went well, although on the approach to Stone the cental secontion of the grate broke in two and fell out.
 - Fortunatly however, as we have been expecting this to happen for a month or two we had a spare onboard. The previous one lasted eight years, and the spare was cast at the time time. The two side sections are still very servicable.

Standedge passage booked for Friday. Boat now waiting outside visitors center at DobCross.

We also got HADAR'ed. See NB Hadar's blog on my blogroll.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Long time no see.

Been a while since the last post as ive been very busy.

National was a great success, including the lit boats parade.

Got to shackerstone well, but sadly it was rained off.

On to standedge and the hudderfeild canal then!

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Return to the canal

Emilyanne has now left the Weaver and returned to the canal system.
- We didnt get upto windsford which is a shame, but a good run non the less.

We are now effectivly on our way to the IWA national in the odd days we have between now and august.

Im also looking for a bunch load of fairy lights (if anyone has any) as i think it would be quite fun to decorate EA in lights while at the national. hehe!

Photos coming later....

Friday, 4 July 2008

More Boating

Boating moves on.

The boat moved without me for the first time in a long time as my mum moved her from acton bridge onto the moorings above vale royal lock on sunday a fortnight ago.

Then last weekend I moved her with mum and dad travelling from vale royal down to anderton and up the lift back on the T&M canal.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

A weekend of steam boating at Trent Lock.

This weekend was spend with Geoff Newton and his boat at the SBA annual Trent Lock Rally held at the Trent Valley Sailing Club and organised by John Tilly.
Geoff unfortunately hurt his back in may of last year, and after an operation at Easter was ready to launch his boat for the first time in over 12months. He only lives a short way up the road, between me and the rally, so it made perfect sense as a first outing and for me to add a helping hand!

The event runs from Friday evening but we launched on Saturday afternoon and just moved down to the sailing club for the main evening meal and to steam up the Erewash with the others on the Sunday.

Suilven on the Trailer with the canopy up and ready to be launched, seen here dwarfing Geoff's rangerover!

Six launches in the mouth of the Erewash Canal.
Sandiacre lock house, home of the Erewash Canal Preservation & Development Association (ECP&DA) .
Other waterways users, a very nice national 12 sailing on the Trent.
Alpacas arrive. Geoff's new lawn mower now needs feeding food not Petrol. Probably cheaper these days!

I'm spending this Friday evening in Loughborough with friends form University who I've not seen much of while Ive been on placment, many of them who where freshers with me are now graduating have done there three years (I'm doing 5 in total) and its the last Friday of term. So it should be a good night!
Then in the morning me and Joe Fuller are going to the Newark Kit Car Show on Saturday which should also be a good day out, hopefully it wont rain too much either, fingers crossed for a dryish weekend and a good turn out at the show.

EmilyAnne is moving on Sunday, probably without me for the first time for many years, this first time my Mum will have moved the boat without either me or Tom there. Not far, but a short run up to Winsford is planned, which should be a nice way to ease into the roll. Including passing the IWA Chester meet at Anderton mid day.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

First steaming of the year.

This weekend just gone Emilyanne moved again and we had a delightfull weekend on the Weaver.

Bar a few very minor teething problems with some of the parts we had removed and refitted over winter, and a stuck inlet valve on a pump, she ran faultlessly all weekend, made steam well, and swam beautifully on the more open water. Although i feel a new set of firebars will be in order shortly as the grate is looking a little on the sad side.

Tom, my grandad and the baots owner, join us and enjoyed the trip too and we even had a supprise meeting with my uncal Thomas whos not seen the boat for a while on the sunday afternoon which was very nice, not least becuase of his comlimentry comments on the current state of the boat.

Heres a select few photos from the trip:

Leaving the marina at Uplands. Clearly a longer bow line is needed if it is to be used for turning around.
A classic 'Anderton Boat Lift' shot but i couldnt resist. I have others of the lift however.
One of the locks on the way down. Sarah mugging up on her driving theory and Michael holding the boat.
We also met Phoenix58 the infamous boat that is. I quite like her, she grows on me every time we meet.
Marsh lock. This is the lock out onto Manchester ShipCanal at the end of the Weaver and bar 500yrds to a very low swing bridge leading to Weston Point Docks is the limit of Navigation without a booking on the the MSC. Maybe next year.
All good things have to come to and end. This is where we left her at the end of the weekend, moored on ActonBridge moorings untill we return shortly.
Final image is of the viaduct just below Dutton lock (looking upstream) its two photos no so expertly spliced together. But a nice shot non the less i think.
So yeah, thats all really! Roll on more boating and weather like that one i say. Hopfully the boat will now move every other weekend, if not most, untill we attend the IWA national and Shackerstone Festival.

Saturday, 31 May 2008

Back cabin complete...

... and ready sail! Last Friday while i was off biking in Scotland that boat passed its boiler certificate. And we also got a letter back from the insurance brokers confirming we do not need another hull survey until 2014 having had one last year. Biking in Scotland was excellent. Four of us undergraduates from JCB borrowed our family car and trailer and spend three nights youth hosteling at Glentress near Melrose. The weather was fantastic and the riding even better. Beautiful!

A view from the track over the hill. Also my bike.
The group of misfits and myself!
One of the more technical parts of the 29km cross country trail.

The refit in the back cabin is now complete with the exception of a number more coats of varnish and a few bits that are going to wait until later. And we are set to leave the Marina under our own steam next weekend, only a week after we originally planned to do so.

We are now not planning to attend the SBA Trent lock rally, but will spend time around around the Chester/Anderton area until mid August when we will move the boat down the Autherley for the National rally en route to this years Shackerstone on the 7th and 8th of September. After which we plan to complete the Hudderfeild canal to Mirfeild, and return along the Rochdale canal with a plan to return to TravelReign (now Uplands Marina) for another winter.

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

An update on progress.

Since i last posted the work on the back cabin has nearly finished, and boiler inspector has been.

My dads being doing some work on the back cabin in evenings which means progress has been fairly good, although as always it ridiculously easy to get side tracked onto doing something more interesting or 'important' such as resealing the roof light which seams to have started leaking this winter, or just having a cup of tea and talking to the bloke on the next door boat!

This is the new framing to hold the drawers.
We also had to remove a section of insulation for the draw to fit as the swim makes the boat narrower here.
These are the drawers now in. Then just the ash fronts adding and the trip around the seorting.

I left home this Friday straight away and headed for the boat, which was in the process of having its boiler tested. It had passed the cold/dry inspection as expected and was in the process of raising steam pressure and everyone was just having a late lunch and preparing for the second stage of the test.
Unfortunately that didn't go so well. One of the gauges failed to work, and without it there was no point in continuing the test. Which is a shame, because this will be the first time that the boat hasn't passed its boiler inspection first time. Presumably the gauge became damaged during winter and will be replaced or reconditioned this week.

On another side i break up for a weeks spring break this Friday and a load of us undergraduates are going off for a four day trip to Scotland with the bikes. A night in Edinburgh town and two nights in a youth hostal by Glentress.

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Back cabin is no more!

I was going to have a lazy day on Saturday, Ive not been getting much sleep and didn't feel great as well have having a few things i needed to sort out.

However i got a call from home asking what i was doing over the weekend, and in the end i went down to the boat anyway and we did a days work on the back cabin. I mentioned in my previous post that we had been making some new drawers for it, and now they are complete the rest of the work in refitting the bed/drawer area needs some attention. The plan is to increase the access to the storage in the backcabin so it can be got at by guests who may be staying onboard and so it doesn't fill with our clutter so much. There are a few drawers there already with tools and the like in, but the rest of the space wasn't really very accessible espcailly with the new cushions in place obstructing the ability to lift the lid of the bed up. But yeah, thats the plan anyway, more access and more storage!
Here is the back cabin before work started.
This is after we had removed all the drawer frames. Not sure the new ones will go in as fast.
This is use doing a test run of the spacing using the new drawers we made and packing parts.

It occurs to me as well that photos would be a bonus on the blog. I like photos, and everyone else has them. So i will have to get on with that! [photos added 22nd may]

I have some nice photos from Sunday as well when i went to the kitcar show at Stoneleigh near Coventry. Apparently its one of the best kitcar shows in Europe, and it certainly didn't disappoint.
- I have a plan to buy a lotus seven replica sometime soon, which would be a bit of fun. If said i would do it for a while, but now i have some money from my sandwich year that dream might actually become a reality. So Ive been looking at various cars and talking to as many people as i can for 6months or so now as well as reading and posting on a number of kitcar forums. Who knows eh!

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

A weekends work.

We visited the boat this weekend having not been aboard this Christmas. I came over from Uttoxeter, mum from home, and grandfather from Bolton.

The remaining morning was spent briefly discussing our plans for the boat for the next year, various trips, supply of coal, work we wanted to do on the boat, and that sort of thing.
In the afternoon we stripped down and cleaned the boiler for the impending boiler inspection. First removing the roof/funnel/smokehood and first sweeping all the 200 fire tubes with a long wire brush and powerdrill and cleaning up the top of the boiler with the vax. Then cleaning out the firebox, removing all the remainder of the last fire and any clinker, wire brushing the tube plate and wet legs, and again hovering clean. Followed by emptying out the ashbox and again hovering that clean.

The boiler inspection happens annually and lasts for 14months and we choose to do it at the beginning of each season, usually before the first steam and after the risk of frost has passed, as we are then always close to home and have as much time as possable to correct any problems that we may have without having to redrain the boiler afterwards as we would in colder weather. Every four years we have a hydraulic test, where the boiler is pumped full of water upto 1.5times working pressure (300psi) and inspected for leaks and any sign of problem. The remaining years the boiler is inspected inside and out in a 'dry' state (no fire or water) and then filled and steam raised. Pressure gauges, safety valves and gauge glasses are checked to be function properly and necessary ancillaries (feed pumps, injectors) checked.

While all this was going on, my dad and brother where in the workshop at home making the new draws for the back cabin.

Monday, 7 April 2008

Holidays and Steamboats.

I promised i would write about our week away in monmounthshire. It was great week as always.

Every year we hire a big house for a week and cause chaos in the local area. The house this year was Treowen where we have been every other year for since 2000 (going to varous other large houses around the country the alternate year) so we know it well and have watched it slowly being done up year on year as well. We got out most days, a days cycaling in the forest dean, a trip to caerphilly castle, cardiff model engineering club, the 'go-ape' highleval assult cause at FoD. And a more 'hardcore' day on the bikes at CwnCarn. As well as the usuall pool, croquet, music, radiocontroled cars, drinking and much good food .

A selection of people at breakfast in the kitchen.
A number fo bikes loaded ready for FoD.
Go-Ape at the Forest of Dean. My sister and various cousins.
My cousin Patrick with one of his RC cars, another regualar feature.
Sax Trio. Music of all sorts is made, be it live instements, or more MP3 based!

Also this weekend i visted another steam narrowboat. Ive been making an effort to get in touch with all the steamnarrowboats on the system. Theres only about 10 active boats so it seams silly for us not to be in touch.
This boat 'PussyWillow' as currently called was origanally started many years ago but she was never finshed and changed hands as a unfinished project a number of years ago but is still as yet unfinished.
However i got in touch with her current owner a while back and as i had a free afternoon drove down to Kettering to see her and her owner on the banks of the Nene.
He has done a fair bit of work on the engine a Leak Compound like ours, which when bought wasnt in a running state. And as seams to be not uncommon with these engines the crankshaft wasnt in a fit state to run and the timing miles out. So that has now been rectifide and the engine runs satisfactorally on compressed air, which is an excellent sign of things to come, steam engines always run better on steam than compressed air anyway. And then i was invited for tea! Excellent.
Sadly i dont have any photos, so clearly im going to have to visit her again sometimes soon!

Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Another post.

The injector arrived!
I went into uttoxeter again in my half hour lunchbreak to collect my bike and run it back home having droped it off for a service the day before. But what should await me on the door step but a ticket from royalmail. Much confused i hurried round to the post office before they shut to find one jiffybag with one injector.

The whole injector story has been a right farse. It was ment to be a quick "throw money at it and get it working" operation so we could refit it and test it before the end of last years crusing as we had planned to tidy up some of the pipework around the boiler and how the injector worked would have dictated how that went. However it was not to be, and its taken around six phone calls two letters and nearly £200 to get it back over four months later. Appalling, but there we go. Lucky we have two and can work without them if needed.

On a sunnier prospect, the weather here has been lovely the last few days. This morning i was out in various machines roading them to testsite for noise testing with the new engine. And on friday i finish for easter and am going for a weeks holiday in monmouth with 20 of my extended family, with bikes, model cars, music and alcohol. I will report back on that!!

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Second post.

Well ok, so not a massive amount has happened boatwards, but there's plenty to talk about still.

The weekend before last i went upto york with Rebekah (roger fullers daughter) in the hope that we would see a certain busker. His name is Ed Alleynes-Johnson and he used to busk a lot in Chester which is where i first saw him, and plays a five string electric violin which he made himself, producing a wonderfully unique sound and some fantastic covers. He's appeared on later with jools holand, toured with the new model army, has a rampant following on youtube, and purple shades. What more can you ask for!! Anyway, it was all a success! After a 100mile drive up the motorway, and a half hour wait for the park& ride we practically walked right into him on the first corner. Brilliant. And it was sunny to boot!

But yeah in terms of work on the boat, not much has happened as i said. While we where at york i received a phone call from our landlord-to-be for next year, when we move back to university after our placement year, unfortunately pulling out of signing the contract. So a fair bit of time and the last weekend has been spend finding another, which hopefully we have just about sorted now.

However i have also been on the phone to chase one of the injectors we sent off for repair this week, so that should be with us in a day or two. And we now have a full sketch of what size we want the replacement drawers in the back cabin to be, so maybe they will get made sometime if i can get my dad started on that!

Tuesday, 26 February 2008

First post.

This is the first post of this blog. Which is to be about steam narrowboat EmilyAnne.

The new season is fast approaching, spring is just around the corner, and the year promises to be a good one. So what better time to start than now!
Ive thought about running a blog on the boats progress before now, choosing instead post information on the forums at in the past, but it would be nice to have some of our own space and consolidate the information.

As we stand the boat is generally in good working order, certainly there are no major things that need to be done before shes bought back into steam after winter. Although as always there is plenty that can be done to improve things, and hopefully some of that will happen in the next month or so as time allows.