Life at the end of the road

November 1, 2009

Well perhaps not :-(

Filed under: daily doings, listers — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 7:04 pm

Hmmmm, yesterdays title may have been a little premature.

The trouble with this daily blogging carry on is that people are made aware of my cock ups as well as my triumphs and whilst yesterdays injecting Lister seemed like a bit of a triumph it very nearly turned into a severe cock up 🙂

As I was saying yesterday I went over to Torran to refit the injector pump into my mates ST1 Lister, all appeared to go very well and as soon as it was back together I got my apprentice to turn it over by hand. The unmistakeable tst from within told me that the fuel was indeed getting into the cylinder.

tappet guide bolt 311009 015

My only slight concern being that I could not tighten up the tappet guide bolt that had come loose and caused the problem in the first place. Still, I could phone up the ‘Irn Bru Lister guru’ later but for now I had to abandon Mr Lister as we had to go ‘guising’, well my boy and his pal did at any rate 🙂


After feeding all the pigs and having an early dinner we set off south in the Land Rover at 25mpg as opposed to the Daihatsu at 50mpg. Having managed to convince the swineherd that the 40 cakes she’d baked would be safer in the back of the ‘Old girl’ rather than the ‘Wee car’. It had nothing to do with the fact that I wanted to try out the four ‘Hella Jumbo 220’ spotlights firmly attached to the roof of the Land Rover 🙂

We were all REALLY impressed, even wifey had to admit it was ‘like daylight’ though she made me turn them off when we approached the village 🙂

As soon as we arrived at my sister in laws house the silver knight and his accomplice shot off ‘guising and no sooner had we settled down when the first visitors arrived, a large spotty cat and a small witch. Entering through the front door with mums in tow the duo treated us to a song and joke before topping up their bags with sweeties, cakes, fruit and leaving through the back door.

311009 029

This seemed to set the pattern for the night, all manner of vampires, pirates, werewolves and witches passed through the house, entering by one door and leaving by the other.

By 22:00 with all but one or two of the 40 cakes gone we set off in search of the silver knight and headed back to Arnish up a VERY bright ‘Calum’s road’

311009 032 

and after helping ourselves to the boys treats we all went to bed 🙂

Rain does not do it justice!

What greeted me after a very sound sleep on Sunday morning cannot be simply called rain, the word rain does not do it justice. If the Eskimo’s have lots of words for snow then the Scots deserve a few more for the bucket full’s of water that were falling on my head when I set out to feed the pigs.

Despite the deluge it did not stop me doing some road repairs, first on our driveway and then on the road in front of the house that Braken had dug up.

311009 033

The rain did in fact make the job somewhat easier by washing nice small stones down off the hill at my favourite quarrying spot by ‘Rainy’s wall’, it also helped identify the low spots in the road which I then filled and tamped down with a spade.

Back to Mister Lister

With most holes in the driveway patched and a good deal of mud removed from the road in front of the I loaded up my tools and set off for Torran. Having spoken to my Lister guru last night I needed to remove the tappet guide from under the injector pump and check it out.

311009 042 311009 048

What I found was not a pretty sight, the bolt had worked loose, the guide had turned and then been smashed with the locating pin on the cam follower.

I’m sick of telling people this!

These engines are bombproof and will run for donkeys years with little or no maintenance, though regular oil changes will considerably enhance this. For domestic electricity supply as opposed to mains back up or running a cement mixer they need bolting down SOLID, not on a railway sleeper, not on two bits of angle iron and most definitely NOT ON RUBBER MOUNTS.  A single cylinder SR1 or ST1 needs to be firmly bolted to at least one ton of concrete, it says so in the manual and it says it for a reason. The main thing that stops a Lister generator producing electricity  is broken wiring caused by vibration work hardening the copper, fractured internal piping caused by work hardening of the copper and of course bolts coming loose. Whilst this engine did have the required size of concrete base it was only held down with 2 instead of 8 bolts, both of which were loose 😦

A friend of mine, Bill Steel of Generator Services in Aberdeen has spent his whole working life installing and repairing Lister’s and he told me many years ago that his ‘bread and butter’ was repairing simple electrical faults caused by generators mounted on railway sleepers.

What next?

311009 049

I wonder if the one in here will fit 🙂 and no it did not break down or wear out, it was set on fire by a careless Buddhist but that’s another story involving a badly placed bonfire, east wind, dry weather two fire appliances  and a fish farm boat!

Again time ran out and I rushed home to see my parents who were over for the day, It was also 11:30 and time for ‘second breakfast’

To be honest, that’s about it really, after loading myself up with the traditional Scottish ‘heart attack on a plate’ the monsoon outside did not seem very inviting so I spent the rest of the day being a model husband and son!

The piglets barely poked their noses out of the ark all day

311009 037

and Ginger got on with ‘making bacon’

311009 056

which was a great relief because we though for a while there that he’d gone dud on us!


  1. Paul,
    It seems there are now two things you can see from the moon. One is the Great Wall of China and the other is the ‘Old Girl with the Spotlights’ on Calumn’s Road!

    Comment by Carolyn Scott — November 2, 2009 @ 9:36 am

    • Hi Carolyn, 🙂

      I’m looking forward to a full week of driving up and down ‘Calum’s road’ in the dark or should I say the enlightened dark 🙂

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 3, 2009 @ 8:31 pm

  2. Hi Paul,
    Must say that I enjoy the scenic photos more than the ones of engines, pipes etc! Looks like you’ve had a bit of rain recently! The community on Raasay sure know how to enjoy life, your hallowe’en goings on were much better than down here in a southern town. I got loads of sweeties in, but only had two lots of ‘nasties’ call all evening, one while I was putting my Witch’s costume on, so I missed them, and another lot a bit later when we were in the middle of our hallowe’en meal with friends. But it did mean I got to eat the sweets myself!

    Comment by Frances — November 6, 2009 @ 4:47 pm

    • Hi Frances,

      Sorry about the boring oily pictures but believe it or not some of us guys actually like them 🙂

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 7, 2009 @ 6:10 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: