Thursday, 28 July 2016

Small maintenance tasks

The weather has been too unpredictable to paint but that didn’t stop me completing a couple of small maintenance tasks.  We left Hillmorton around 8.30am after the drizzle had stopped dropping down through the three locks to reach the water point.  The volunteer lock keeper had a notice about the boat stolen from Mercia Marina and informed us he was asking all boaters heading towards Braunston if they had seen the boat.  Boaters heading north like us were asked to report the stolen boat to the police if we saw it.  We cruised on to Brownsover after topping up the water tank and disposing of our rubbish.  It’s exactly a week since we were last in Brownsover and today it was full.  The water point on the park side is still unserviceable but at least It has a “CRT Aware” tag on it.

Jan went off to Tesco whilst I had a decision to make.  The barrel bolt that secures the starboard cratch window has lost its knob.  The nearest hardware centre is Wickes and they has a 51mm barrel bolt in stock for £2.99.  I also checked Screwfix which is further from the mooring.  They had them in stock for £1.25.  Decision……. do I walk the extra distance in the rain to save £1.74.   Well of course I did!  This is the new barrel bolt complete with knob

barrel boltAll I now had to do was remove the original barrel bolt and replace it with the new one.  These days I’m getting older and don’t rush into jobs like I used to.  After a minute of contemplation I wondered if the knob from the new bolt would fit the original.

cratch boltIt does!   Then I realised if the original barrel bolt knob had worked loose there was a chance all the other barrel bolt knobs on the boat might also need some attention.  Yes, they were all loose!  It seemed like a good idea to go around the boat and tighten all of them.  Finger tight isn’t sufficient, so I decided to use pliers.  But the teeth in the pliers would probably mark the chrome knobs.  To prevent this I used masking tape over the teeth.

pliers

That worked rather well and I was able to successfully tighten all the barrel bolt knobs. 

The second task was to visit Maplin and buy a replacement plug for the laptop power supply.  You may recall I made a power converter so the laptop can run off the boat 12V supply.  The original laptop plug is a right angle but I can only buy straight plugs from Maplin.  The problem is these straight plugs are regularly damaged and require replacing approximately once a year.

laptop plugThis is my locally made power adapter.  The red arrow points to the plug requiring replacement.  The “black box” contains a DC to DC step-up converter which raises the boat 12V to 19.2V for the laptop.  I now have a replacement plug (and spare) which will I will fit next time we run the engine (soldering iron requires 240V)

By now Jan had arrived back at Waiouru with a heavily loaded shopping trolley.   

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