Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Paper ballast

Not the best type if its under the floor but if its in the form of books on a narrowboat then it can be a weight and therefore maybe ballast enough to adjust the trim of the boat.  A recent Vlog from one of the best canal vloggers out there got to talking about their passion for books (paper) and how they were going to make extra bookshelves that maybe would impact on the trim of their boat. Link here go to about 9.30 on the vlog to see the bit about bookcases.

With regard to ballast the survey on Percy advised there was no bilge inspection point. Not quite correct as I have been able to easily lift the back cabin floor as I did to check it earlier in the year and also to route the bilge pump cable to the small area that catches the drips from the stern gland.

The two large pipes are the hydraulic drive. However there is a bulk head with one smallish access hole for the pipes and now the bilge cable run in conduit. The next room is the engine room with good access all around to the base plate. So the most logical place to have a cabin bilge access hatch is under the loo (middle of the boat) in the bathroom. Rachel accidentally ran a lot of water into there when giving the boat a spring clean - the only way to check it was to put in the required inspection hatch. Not really much in there but pleasingly the whole area used engineering brick (no water absorption) sitting on what looked and felt like thick mineral felt  - the sort used on shed roofs. Another sure sign of a good build by Tony. 

So no paper ballast only a few books dotted around the boat as we both are Kindle book readers - not great from a fella who is a craftsman time served printer.... but technology stops for no one.  

Final thought, Percy is like an old style railway carriage - the ones with the eight person separate pods, we've all seen them on old films and the railway in the valley uses them, on out last but one trip with friends from Scotland we had one to ourselves.  On Percy this means all the weight of furniture and fixtures and fittings in on the port side so Tony must have expertly trimmed the boat with the required ballast on the starboard side - not easy to get right but Percy is well trimmed so he indeed did get it right. 

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