Sunday, 29 July 2012

Engine Commissioned


Another week gone and what a week,the weather has been superb,the summer is here at last.This week Lisa and I have been staying over in Congerstone,along side the Ashby Canal,so we’ve been out doing a bit more sightseeing as well as enjoying the lovely sunny weather,and walking along the towpath to Shackerstone and the Rising Sun,for the odd pint of Pedigree.Monday saw us at Trent Lock to visit Chyandour and see for ourselves the work that Mick and John had done over the past week.Believe me when I say that she is looking superb,we really are pleased with her progress.

We had a day out at Conkers on Tuesday,this is an attraction in the Midlands that was created on land left derelict after the closure of some of the areas coalmines.There’s loads of things to do here and miles of paths to explore in the woodlands,as well as  the lakes,and this is only part of a huge area that has been transformed.There are indoor experiences as well  as outdoor ones,it’s a great day out,and we’ll go back next time we’re in the area.Here’s a couple of pictures.


On the left is Lisa,we were doing a barefoot walk,which meant we had to walk along paths of different materials.Behind her is a trough of cold water and,boy was it cold,then onto the large cobbles before smaller ones and then the mud and various other textures.It was good,might get used to it so that,in the next lot of bad weather,instead of getting shoes etc. all muddy,we can walk along the towpath barefoot.Save on footwear too.The picture on the right is one of the views across the restored landscape,I can’t remember how many thousands of trees have been planted.

Our next bit of sightseeing took us to more of the sort of thing that I enjoy.This time it was Moira Furnace,a museum of a part of the industrial revolution,where it’s possible to see exhibits that date back to the beginning of the 19th Century.The furnace itself was built in 1806 and the Lime Kilns in the years after.Along side them both is,of course,a canal,the Ashby Canal,which, incidentally,doesn’t go to Ashby and never did.The canal served both the furnace and the lime kilns,bringing raw materials in and removing finished goods to take them to the heart of the canal system,which is Birmingham,and beyond.At the moment this part of the canal is no longer connected to the rest of the Ashby canal farther to the west,but it is hoped to restore the link and reconnect it to the network.

Moira Furnace 030Moira Furnace 031

The left picture has the furnace at the front,minus the chimney on top,The right picture is the ramp up which the raw materials were wheelbarrowed by young lads from the canal below the ramp into the building behind the furnace.The raw materials where then put into the furnace at the top of what remains today.The molten iron,or pig iron,was then discharged at the bottom.Sadly there’s nothing left of the buildings to the front of the furnace which was the foundry.We would like to thank Helen Shepherd,the Site Manager,for a wonderful tour and description of the site and to wish her good luck in the pursuit of funding for the future of the furnace.

Ok,back to Chyandour.As I said earlier,we went over on Monday to see her and to take a few more photo’s,and we were most impressed with the way she is coming on.We had a chat to John and Mick about what they had done,and would be doing in the week ahead.John advised us to check out the flooring that we would like for the galley and bathroom,as he is getting close to the point where he would like to fit it.This we did on Wednesday.We also looked at a few more tellies and mattresses,fortunately we still have time for these yet.On Friday,Kingfishers build blog was posted on line so we could see what John and Mick had been up to through the week.They have taken delivery of a very nice XR&D shell,the photo’s of which you can see on their build blog if you click Here.There were also a couple of pic’s of Chyandour so between them and us,here is how she looks now.

Chyandour (2) 27.07.12 278

Above,on the left we have the galley with the cooker installed,the worktop and sink are in place and you can see that Mick has started on the tiles.Also you can see the shelving that John has fitted to the side of the oven unit.We ourselves haven’t seen any of this yet,it’s a photo’ that I pinched of their website,so we are looking forward to Monday when we visit again.On the right is the gearbox,the driveshaft,the fuel lines,exhaust,control cables and the pipes to the skin tank for cooling.No radiator,so the engine is cooled by canal water flowing past the skin tank.The cables control the speed and the direction,just one forward and one reverse gear,the control lever being to hand near the tiller.All of this is in the very bottom of Chyandour,the bilge,which is bellow the waterline,though the baseplate,which you can see below the gearbox and driveshaft,is only a couple of feet under water.Now that all this has been connected up,and Mick has commissioned the engine,Chyandour is ready to go,mechanically,that is.

Well,that’s all for now,we’ve nothing planned for next week yet,but something will turn up I am sure.Take Care.

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