Life at the end of the road

October 7, 2018

Laid up in Largs :-)

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 7:01 pm

That’ll be the good weather by with Sad smile the beautiful trip down Scotland’s West Coast came to an abrupt end this morning as we departed ‘The Toon’ for Largs. Sure it wasn’t so bad to start with, we had the wind ‘up our ar5e’ and it wasn’t too fresh at first. Just as well cos we managed to get the rolled shoulder of Raasay pork in the oven afore it got too ‘rolly polly’.

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The 2kg lump of one of our ‘Large Black’ boars got a few cloves of garlic inserted then vigorously rubbed with salt and olive oil. He was then sat on a bed of carrots before being surrounded by Rooster potatoes that had had the bashing about in a container of olive oil and salt treatment. More potatoes followed in a tray and got dowsed in rosemary for good measure before spending a wobbly couple of hours in the oven as the weather worsened.

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We got a bit of a lee behind Little Cumbrae, enough to clear up the multitude of cutlery, jars, pans, sauces and bathroom paraphernalia that had spread itself liberally across the galley and toilet.

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However, that didn’t last long and whilst we were cursing it, the RNLI were loving it Smile

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The Largs inshore Lifeboat was having a ‘whale of a time’ Smile at least that’s what it sounded like over the VHF.


An hour later we were off Largs pier awaiting MV Loch Shira

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who was busy plying to Cumbrae and back. Once she’d cleared Largs slipway we nipped in to discharge Finlay’s car then tied up for the night on the south (exposed) side of the pier, there being ‘no room at the inn’ so to speak Smile

Once securely fastened to Scotland we shutdown the drives and settled down to our rather civilized ‘Sunday roast’. After which we got on with more dry dock prep and the replacement of one of Hallaig’s motorised DC switches.


These motorised switches are the bane of my life, made by a very reputable company in Finland and not Chindia they are supposed to be good for some 5000 cycles but they’re not. They do around 1800 a year but are lucky to last two, this one was due to be changed at this years docking after around 3600 cycles but failed on Thursday night Sad smile Sure we’ve been in touch with ABB but they were not very sympathetic and the worst of it is, the parts that fail are usually small cast levers and cams that would be easily replaced if they’d supply them Sad smile 

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Still, there is an ‘upside’ to this, these 400A switches can be pulled apart and configured to operate manually. Not very good for Hallaig but perfect for switches on large ‘off grid’ battery banks Smile


The truth is, I actually like changing these switches as it’s quite a challenging task with the whole drive cabinet needing isolated on the 24vDC, 400vAC and 700vDC circuits. It is not a task to be undertaken lightly Smile

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Special tools are required and strict protocols must be observed.

For the want of a salad

So, after all that and having spent far too much time eating dead animals I fancied a salad for dinner. Sure we’ve been eating well aboard Hallaig but much of it has been of the bacon, sausage, mince and pork ilk. Nothing wrong with that but I’m a great fan of salad too, having managed to rustle one up last night from the Co op in ‘The Toon’ I thought I’d do the same tonight in Largs, ‘Aye Right’ Sad smile

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Acres and acres of booze, sugary drinks crisps and carp in the Largs Co op but only two small shelves of green stuff!!!!!


Still, I managed to come away with some tomatoes Smile


  1. Elektra is in Largs Marina on brokerage Paul. You near there on Wednesday afternoon?

    Comment by Panomphaean — October 7, 2018 @ 7:06 pm

    • Sorry John, we’ll be away first thing, due at dock gates 10:30 tomorrow.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 7, 2018 @ 7:08 pm

      • Where are you headed, Fergusons?

        Comment by Panomphaean — October 7, 2018 @ 7:45 pm

      • Dales, Garvel Clyde John.

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 7, 2018 @ 8:02 pm

      • Okay, not been there. How long you down for, as it would be great to see Hallaig if possible?

        Comment by Panomphaean — October 7, 2018 @ 8:11 pm

      • Hi John,
        would be good to catch up and swap LiFePO4 stories. I’m down here for another week and will be staying at the Premier Inn Greenock.I’ll email you you a good time for a tour.

        Cheers, Paul

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 7, 2018 @ 8:37 pm

      • Okay. Ta.

        Comment by Panomphaean — October 7, 2018 @ 9:42 pm

  2. Enjoy Largs, maybe pop across ta Millport and my mum will make you lot a coffee

    Comment by alexmcgarvie — October 7, 2018 @ 7:18 pm

  3. Love how you managed to switch a negative to a positive … ones, loss another’s gain and all that.

    Comment by Matt — October 7, 2018 @ 9:30 pm

  4. Re the motorised switches, I am surprised that those responsible for issuing tenders for any replacement vessels haven’t cottoned on to this issue and stipulated in such documents that such switches from Finland are not to be used in company vessels. Also that with the continued poor quality issues that all of the switches have not been replaced with a more suitable/better product. That would liven the Finn’s up a bit, and maybe make them see sense.

    Comment by Richard — October 8, 2018 @ 9:46 am

    • Yes, you would think that wouldn’t you Richard, if it were me I’d be kicking ABB’s ar5e but fitting a different type/make isn’t really an option. The answer is to either make them ‘fit for purpose’ or supply the part that breaks as a listed spare.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 10, 2018 @ 5:34 am

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