Life at the end of the road

March 17, 2012

Still cheaper, or ‘how not to …..’

Filed under: daily doings, shed/house — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 7:06 am

Story of my life really, ‘how not to’ probably on account of my refusal to read any instructions until I’ve ‘bits left over’ or something looks decidedly dodgy. Of course nowadays they would give this condition a title like ADHD or ADD. Me I call it just plain laziness, cocksureness, and poor eyesight 🙂

Anyway the first task on today’s ‘list’, well yesterdays actually, as once more I’m up at a time when many Friday night revellers will just be going to bed. The first ‘wee job’ was to change the CV joint ‘boots’ on my mates quad. I say my mates quad but in truth the boys and I spend far more time using it than he ever does 🙂 but what are mates for 🙂

Of course I got distracted when I noticed something strange at the hydro turbine inlet , it was not overflowing with water, all of the water going into the tank was running down the pipes?? Given the amount of water coming down the burn,

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it should have looked like this (old photo) but all the water was going down the pipes (there’s now three) 😦

A trip down to the turbine on the quad revealed that all was fine down there so I walked the length of the three pipes to look for leaks.

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It soon became apparent that the area had been visited by pigs, who whilst making a fine job of digging up the bracken had also been pushing my pipes out of the way with their snouts 😦

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Sure enough the larger of the three ‘penstocks’ had a burst joint 😦 so I went and isolated it before getting stuck into the Yamaha’s boots. The pipe could wait, rather than just re couple it I’d put in a whole new section, thus removing at least two, perhaps even three of the joints.

When I installed this many years ago I only had 7m long lengths of pipe but I did have plenty of joints, since then I’ve acquired much longer lengths of pipe so it would be a good opportunity to free up some joints, make the system more ‘pig proof’ and use up some pipe 🙂

Changing Yamaha Quad CV boots

Well it probably applies to most quads but here goes.

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First job is to loosen the wheel, remove the drive shaft nut and then jack it up and put it on stands.

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Then undo the track rod end, upper ball joint and lower wishbone, I’d normally just remove the lower ball joint but my ‘ball joint splitter’ would not fit between the disc and joint. A splitter is not required for the top one or track rod end as a carefully placed thwack with a hammer will do.

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The whole shaft will then pull out of the front differential casing and you can plug that with a rubber glove or something to save loosing any oil.

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As you can see it’s well split 😦 You can actually buy a tool that allows you to fit the gaiter over the joint but I’ve not got one so it was off with the joint. Now this is where I ‘cocked up’, I just knocked the joint off with a hammer thinking it had a similar type of circlip to the one that goes into the diff.

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It did come off no bother but once it was off I realized that it was in fact the wrong way to do it. What I should have done was remove the large internal circlip from the joint casing then pull that off to reveal an external circlip on the end of the shaft. Well you live and learn, or at least some people do 🙂

Once I’d sussed that out I disassembled the joint and cleaned it all out prior to fitting the two new gaiters on the shaft.

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One of the boots requires trimming first so I slid it onto a bit of plastic pipe to save trimming my fingers, again, had I bothered to read the instructions I could have fitted it first then cut it after 🙂

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Still, I was pleased with the result and the boots that I’d got from Arizona came with a special little tool for securing the stainless steel retaining bands, something I’ve never seen in a kit before. Even with the £8 VAT and £8 added on by Royal Mail they were cheaper than ones from Cumbria Which is a tragedy really but I refuse to pay £14 delivery on something that could be posted for a couple of quid


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After that Molly and I dragged 25m of 90mm pipe through the woods to put in place for repairing the penstock.


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Then we went to look for a route to take up a water tank for the new house and clean out the well.

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The day just kept getting better so I made a start on the other side of the roof

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reluctantly giving up when an unforecast drop of rain arrived around 17:30.

Anyway it’s 7:00am now and I’ve stuff to do, this took far longer than expected 😦


  1. Hi Paul

    What a grand site you have for the new house – I could look at that view for ever. You’ll be less sheltered there than in your current house, it would seem – in line for the sou’westerlies unless there’s something hidden than I can’t see from your pics.

    Happy weekend


    Comment by Sue — March 17, 2012 @ 9:40 am

    • Hi Sue, west and north west will be the worst but we’re talking serious insulation, windows and only one door around the back, it’s gonna be toasty 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 17, 2012 @ 7:54 pm

  2. Hi Paul
    Will you be project managing a load of sub contractors for the build or will you hand the whole thing over to a building firm

    Comment by rob — March 17, 2012 @ 10:18 am

    • Hi Rob,

      Lachie Gillies of Staffin will be doing most of the work and management, me I’m just doing some finishing, kitchen bathroom etc and organizing the plumbing and electrical work. Lachie and his right hand man Angus have done much fine work here on Raasay.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 17, 2012 @ 7:58 pm

  3. lovely shot of the new site, thanks Paul … and your “old” house is looking so spic and span, it will look attractive in the estate agents window that’s for sure

    Comment by carina — March 17, 2012 @ 11:44 am

    • Just wait until I finish the roof, fill the container with furniture and post the video on YouTube 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 17, 2012 @ 8:00 pm

  4. Not sure if you’ve seen this story but here’s a “prat nav” tale from Australia – car driver drives in to sea following SatNav directions –

    Comment by Andy — March 17, 2012 @ 11:54 am

    • Priceless Andy 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 17, 2012 @ 8:00 pm

  5. Wait, you fix the four wheeler without reading the instructions, and THEN you read them to learn what you did wrong? What happened to “ignorance is bliss?”

    And that’s some fine view you’ve got yourself there. Any geothermal in your future?

    Comment by drgeo — March 17, 2012 @ 6:20 pm

    • And will there be an escalator for old geezers who wish to return from the barn?

      Comment by drgeo — March 17, 2012 @ 6:23 pm

      • “And will there be an escalator for old geezers who wish to return from the barn?” no but there will be a wheelchair ramp 🙂 🙂 🙂

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 17, 2012 @ 8:01 pm

  6. I think you should post those pictures up on the Navitron forum if possible whenever you ask for any suggestions about the new house, perhaps with the caption ‘did someone say exposure’. Nonetheless with some nice windows and a fire going it would be so picturesque you could make your own Everest TV advert, assuming that is you’ve seen them.

    Comment by ewaste1001 — March 17, 2012 @ 6:57 pm

    • Hi E,
      serious triple glazed windows , mega insulation and a layer of thick stone outside of the block work should take care of that 🙂

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 17, 2012 @ 8:08 pm

  7. My brother asked me one, “You know what are instructions are don’t you? Just another man’s opinion.”

    Comment by jomegat — March 18, 2012 @ 1:52 am

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