Saturday, 17 May 2014

Walk & Pump

Recently Jan has been telling me she thinks the boat water pump sounds noisier.  I haven’t noticed it but that’s one of the advantages of getting old!  However it did make me think about whether the water pump is an essential piece of equipment.  Logic says it is a rather important item for people who live aboard.  We could draw water from the canal with a bucket to flush the toilet but washing and showering would be more of a problem.  We could wait until the day that the pump fails and manage the crisis.  Hopefully any failure of the pump will occur several years from now.  Well I’d expect it to be several years from now because it was the most expensive pump I could find.  It’s a self priming FloJet!  Despite this we decided to purchase a spare.  The problem is I forgot to check water pumps when we were at Braunston and again when we stopped for the filter and oil at The Canal Shop.  Saving money by forgetting things is another advantage of getting old!

Last night I sat at the computer and compared the data on the OS website –vs- the OSM and managed to find some public footpaths around Barby Straight which are not on the OSM.  By walking to the location via the towpath I’d be able to call into the Canal Shop.  Daniel was volunteered to come in the vain hope he would carry any heavy purchase.

We started from the mooring (top red arrow) and walked to the Canal Shop (right red arrow) where I looked at all the water pumps before selecting a similar FloJet.  I had already realised our existing water pump doesn’t have a pre-filter so one was added to the list of purchases.

I’m now going to have to fit the pre-filter to the existing pump.  The spare pump will be wrapped in a plastic bag and sealed before being stored beside the existing pump.  The bad news is the debit card screamed in pain and Daniel failed to volunteer to carry the purchases.  Fat old dad ended up carrying them on the walk.

We managed to record six sections of public footpath on the gps.  Daniel was slightly puzzled with the routing as I had to back track a couple of times to reach the end of another path.  The walk took us through fields of canola (rape) and Daniel commented about the smell from the crop.  What smell?  That’s another advantage of getting old!

Daniel had sensibly carried a bottle of water with him and was able to rehydrate on the walk.  Being old, I’d forgotten to take any water with me.  Fortunately we were able to stop at the cafe beside Hillmorton Bottom Lock where I treated him to a pint of cleansing ale as a reward for carrying the heavy pump.  Old age again.  I’d forgotten it was me that had carried the pump!

John and Judith (nb Serena) were moored in the Hillmorton Arm and we were able to have a brief chat before heading back to Waiouru.  This old bugger was stuffed and very sweaty by the time we reached the boat for a late lunch.  Jan said I stank but fortunately I can’t smell it (old age).  The gps record indicates we walked about 20 kilometres which is OK.  What wasn’t so OK was Daniel’s suggestion we walking into town that afternoon and purchase food for a BBQ tomorrow.  I’d forgotten (age thing) young’ins recover faster than the oldies!  We reached the centre of town after a brisk walk and topped up my backpack with the heavy items from ASDA.   Daniel volunteered to carry the loaf of bread in his small backpack.  I don’t know where he learned all these tricks and I should really remember them.  He decided we should take fish n chips back to Waiouru for dinner.  Unfortunately we arrived at the shop 50 minutes before opening time and had to sit around the corner solving the world’s problems whilst waiting.  On reaching 5 O’clock and attempting to stand I discovered my legs had gone on strike and my bum had gone to sleep (an age thing).  Eventually I was able to waddle across the road to the shop where I gradually straightened out!  Daniel then said we had to get back to the boat quickly or else dinner would go cold……………  I’m going to sleep well tonight and no doubt Jan will complain about me cutting firewood all night with that noisy chainsaw! 


Working Narrow Boat Hadar said...

I always recommend carrying spare pumps as well as repair kits for every pump on-board, then when a pump fails it can be replaced immediately and the broken one can be repaired at a more leisurely moment, especially important if the main pump fails whilst the wife is midway through having a shower! The other advantage of this is that you purchase the said pumps at today's price, and although they may not fail immediately, when they do, the price of that first replacement will be higher. I do the same with fuel and oil filters, I buy them in bulk, usually 10 at a time, and this works out very economical over many years. I actually store the spare pumps alongside the working pumps, so I do not have to go hunting for them.

Tom and Jan said...

Hi Keith,
The spare pump is now wrapped in two plastic bags and located beside the existing pump. I just need to fit the pre-filter. I should probably do some research on what part of the pump fails and have the high turnover spare parts on hand. Your idea about having 10 replacement oil filters is great but I don't think we have the room.

Working Narrow Boat Hadar said...

What we have is the galley cupboards have false floors, below one is all the pumps, main water, shower and bilge, and below the other floor is all our spare filters etc. Very handy storage area for items not needed that often.

Tom and Jan said...

Ah... we have kickboard drawers under the standard galley cupboards so are already utilizing that storage space!

Great minds think alike! :-)