Life at the end of the road

June 16, 2012

Fish, in the engine room!!!!

Filed under: daily doings — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:13 pm

Not going to be much of an effort tonight, more of a scribble a few notes down to pass away the last half hour before we sail. For it is Saturday already and I’m plonking away on here whilst firmly lashed to Scotland, a gentle surge from the north rocking me gently, the port generator purring away in the background and the patter of wet feet passing the mess room window. That’ll be the group from Raasay house just returning from a spot of ‘pier jumping’ 🙂

I was a little better organized this morning and managed to get to work early with clean teeth and a shave. I still forgot my phone right enough but at least I remembered the crucial stuff like last nights ‘mince and tatties’. The left overs being enough for a breakfast lunch and dinner 🙂 I know it’s a little OTT but I hate to see stuff go to waste 🙂 Of even more importance though was the two dozen ‘Arnish Eggs’ for the shop, it would have been ‘cold shoulder’ and not mince and potatoes had I forgot those 😦

160612 001

The drive into work was brightened up by the ring of water lilies in that wee lochan whose name escapes me right now but it’s near the ‘horseshoe bend’ at the bottom of the ‘hill of the lamb’ 🙂

 160612 003

Old news now, as it’s been done for a while, but it’s the first time that I’ve had chance to look at the roof of Raasay House.

160612 004

It’s good to see these traditional skills kept alive by the likes of  who did the stonework and who did the slating and ‘Firth plumbing’ of Inverness who did the lead work.

One of the first jobs of the day was cleaning the seawater strainers on the generators

160612 005

which have been catching quite a few fish of late

160612 009

and some of them were still alive so got returned to the sea 🙂

I also made a start on taking the oil samples from the major machinery, something we do twice a year to ensure the smooth operation of our ‘critical systems’. The samples go away to for laboratory analysis to check for the likes of water, chrome, copper, sodium, lead and a whole host of other chemicals, metals and elements 🙂 Water obviously means there’s a leak into a system, sodium indicates it’s seawater, copper or lead can indicate worn bearings, chrome, damaged hydraulic rams and so on.

The lab can detect the tiniest of particles and they are logged and graphed for our records, giving an early indication of any potential problems before they occur. Of course such accuracy is only as good as the sample taken so almost clinical hygiene and sterile bottles are used.

 160612 010

Oil being drained off prior to the sample being taken on the port generator which was due a service anyway. The two Perkins Sabre 4.4TGM generators are now two and a half years old and have clocked up in excess of 3000 hours, the equivalent of about 90,000 miles in a car and were ready for service.

160612 011

A major 1000 hour service that included the valve clearances, belts, all the filters

160612 012

and a new plate for the Jabsco circulation pump.

160612 013

In desperation you can just turn the plate around but it’s not ideal for the part numbers and manufacturers name are engraved on that side. Whilst the markings would pass little water and make hardly any impact on the durable impeller it does make for difficulty  sourcing the right part later on in life 🙂 However it will get you ‘out of a hole’ if you’ve not got a spare.



  1. Morning Paul

    It was good to see you yesterday, though not so good to be leaving the island and driving south. It rained all the way and there was no view because of the mist. Good job we’ve seen it before!

    Keep up the good work on the boat and the blog and see you next year (DV).


    Comment by Sue — June 17, 2012 @ 7:33 am

  2. Hi Paul, I have to admit my knowledge of marine engines and their life was to say the least non-existant until I started to read your blog, It is fascinating to learn about these wonderful creations and just how much work is involved in keeping the ship in order and ticking over nicely! Fish in the engine room, now had they been just a bit bigger they would have made a lovely meal, although maybe a little on the off side! lol
    Haven’t they done a fine job on Raasay House, it is looking more and more like it should and is indeed a credit to those involved in its renovation and repair.
    as always many thanks on such an informative and interesting blog, you bring life to the island of Raasay and its going ons where no other could with such excellent pictures and information!
    All the best and a huge thanks

    Comment by Thomson Caravans — June 17, 2012 @ 12:02 pm

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

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: