Life at the end of the road

February 18, 2016

It didn’t even have a name :-(

Filed under: boats, daily doings, Trucks and plant — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:05 pm

Thought I’d better write something before you all started getting ‘shirty’ Smile Thursday night now after not a bad day on the weather front, but Tuesday was a ‘pure bitch’. The spell of fine February sunshine and high pressure coming to an abrupt end sometime on Monday night. I cannae say for certain when, for since we’ve moved out of the caravan the sides of the bedroom no longer move and there are no early warning draughts. We’re even less aware of the weather after Tony Stridgeon fitted our thick Roman blinds and the ‘wee dug’ no longer flattens her ears during storms.

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In fact, she has a new berth on the back of George the sofa!

The week got off to a fine enough start with a good frost but not enough to freeze our water. My son having spent a few hours burying the water pipe of the weekend. It’s still not finished but it certainly made a difference.

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A huge generator and fuel bowser came over on this Mercedes truck, the old Loch Striven would have been struggling to get a couple cars on at the same time but we hardly noticed it. Pretty sure it’ll be to supply Oscaig and Holoman  whilst they cut timber around the Hydro’s power cables.

The nice leisurely day of checking the ships myriad of battery banks came to an abrupt halt around 10:40 when the hydraulics broke down. Just as we were heading into Raasay the skipper started the hydraulic pump to lower the ramp and nothing happened!

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Typically it was with a deck full of cars, the mail on board and 35 passengers Sad smile I can’t take all the credit for fixing it as I had to ‘phone a friend’ who put me on the right track, cheers Scotty.

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It was this rascal, the ‘loading valve’ which allows the hydraulic pumps to start ‘off load’. Once the pumps are running it closes and allows pressure to build in the system. The electromagnetic solenoid that operates it had failed and the valve was stuck open, luckily we had a spare and suffered only a 15 minute delay whilst I sorted it. Felt much longer than that right enough as I ran around like a headless chicken trying to fix it. OK, well, not really, but the pressure was certainly on me, even if it wasn’t on the ‘loading valve’ Smile

Storm, what storm

When it did arrive on Tuesday morning it should not have been a surprise to anyone, for it was well forecast but  its ferocity certainly was worse than prophesised. The peaking at midday was certainly right, and I’ve no idea what the wind speed was then,


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but it was 59knots at 11:00am and it got much worse.

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That’ll be ‘Violent storm 11’ on the Beaufort scale a ‘gnat’s ball’ off a hurricane force 12 at 64knots. All that and it never even got a name! perhaps they only get names when they affect the sowf Smile

Wednesday had us shipping over quite a lot of commercial traffic,

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the RET which was brought in last year making a huge reduction in most fares.

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The wireless mast that was bent by Henry being finished off good and proper by the ‘Storm with no name’. The installers were told at the time to ‘Sconser proof’ it, and to be fair it was held in by M10 stainless studs and resin anchors but they proved inadequate.

The Jabsco overhaul

Today got off to an inauspicious start with a few icy patches on the way into work but I met the gritter at Glam so at least the post lady wouldn’t be skidding in her ‘Egg Chariot’ on the way to her work.

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The Portree prawn creeler ‘Golden Dawn’ was probably well into her working day as we departed Raasay at 7:55.

Most of my day was spent pottering about in the engine room, well OK, perhaps not most of it, but more than usual. The bilges needed a good polish and some spare parts had arrived for the Jabsco pumps.

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These ingenious pumps use s flexible rubber impeller to pump liquids, usually cooling water or sea water but also (with special impellers) fuel and oil.

Couldn’t find an actual Jabsco but that’s the same principle, anyway the mechanical seal had failed on this one, 8.9.10,11,you can see it in the third image. The seal is ceramic and requires a full strip down so I changed face plate,16, rotated the back plate, 7 and replaced the cam, 6.


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Good as new Smile

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