Life at the end of the road

September 26, 2018

Onto the next project

Filed under: Avon Searider, daily doings, How I, pigs, stonework — Tags: , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:34 pm

Busy old day here on the slipway and quite pleased with the results, it’s far from finished but at a stage now where I can launch and recover the Searider at around 3.75m tide height. That’s using the Land Rover or a 4WD car, methinks with the digger I could nock another .5m off that for an ambitious recovery if I ever had to get it out sharpish. For now it means easy recovery or launch at any high tide, which is all I ever planned for anyway. I’m now at a stage where I need a man with a BIG MIXER  or a word with Ross Concrete Smile

Methinks 6 cubic meters at the base would just finish it off nicely Smile Eyre Plant’s batcher poured the last 6 cube in my wind turbine base and a fine job it was Smile

Dug walking

The day didn’t start off in concrete mode though, I wouldn’t be able to make a start on that until lunchtime but that was fine. I had an appointment at the Raasay surgery so tied that in with some serious dug walking with Bonzo, Molly and Leah. How on earth did I end up walking three dogs? I don’t even like dogs Smile At least that’s what I keep telling myself.


And walking three of them on leads at the same time is a friggin nightmare. It’s fine walking them off the leads up at home as there’s no sheep and precious little traffic but old Bonzo will chase anything that moves given half the chance and he’ll no come back. Molly and Leah are pretty good but who knows what they’d do if Bonzo went off on one. Still, we had a good trudge of the hills behind Suisnish.

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There are some lovely old ruins and walls over there and it’s somewhere I’ve never been before.

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That took me nicely up to 10:30 and tea and biscuits with Bonzo’s owner before my wee trip to the surgery then home for breakfast. Nice fried number involving our own eggs and next doors yellow tomatoes on Mediterranean bread (without butter of course) Smile

Back to the slipway

Today’s plan was to grout the exposed bits in an attempt to prevent sea damaging what I’d spent so long working on.


These rocks needed tying into the bedrock and all the holes filling and smoothing. It may quite a while before I can get a good large single pour done professionally so the smoother the better.

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A good coating of PVA being applied before the concrete was poured, this along with the rebar and bolts bonded to Scotland should help keep things together. Of course, I didn’t do all this myself,


the pigs came along to give me a hand Smile These two really do like company and hung around me for much of the day. Last week they were helping my neighbours at Torran with some deer fencing Smile

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The next project

Once I’d done that to my satisfaction I cleared up and moved onto my next project,

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a shelter for the Searider to keep the worst of the weather and sunshine off it. She was built in 1990 and has been kept undercover for much of that time so the plan is to build a kinda car port for her out of Raasay larch on that concrete pad.


September 25, 2018

Better than expected :-)

Filed under: Avon Searider, boats, daily doings, How I, pigs, shed/house, Trucks and plant — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 7:47 pm

Well, I got me concreting done after all, though I didn’t start until much later, that heave in the sea didn’t moderate until early afternoon. A good gale of south wind flattened it sufficiently by midday so I decided to ‘go for it’.

I’d spent the fine dry morning creosoting the pig arcs and then finishing floor number two.

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I can’t remember exactly when we bought these insulated pig arcs but it’s way before I started blogging in 2007 so they’re at least 12 years old and this is the first repair work I’ve done on them. The company I bought them off is long out of business but it certainly wasn’t cos they made an inferior product. They’re 8 x 6 so plenty large enough for the biggest sow and a litter and insulated too so they’re warm in the winter and cool in the summer without any problems with condensation. Sure I could have made some myself but to be honest, by the time I’d bought the materials I would not have saved much and at that time I didn’t have the same amount of cordless tools to make these projects so much fun Smile

Once I’d sorted that I decided to at least go down to the shore and bond all my bolts and rebar into the bedrock by the slipway. It was pretty wild and I didn’t seriously think I’d actually be mixing any concrete but at least I could get some prep work done for tomorrow.

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I’d drilled some 20 or so 14mm holes yesterday to take 150mm x M12 galvanized bolts and 12mm rebar. With the tide now well out I washed out the holes again then blasted them dry with the Hilti hand pump. The RE HIT500 resin is then injected into the hole with a special gun that takes and mixes the two component parts. This resin is the ‘dogs bollox’ but boodly expensive. The first time I used it was 2005 to bolt my first wind turbine directly to Scotland. Back then I paid the full price for the stuff and hired a gun. Can’t remember what it cost but now it’s getting on for £30 for a 330ml ‘twin pack’

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Me, I just buy em off eBay now, just out of date for about a tenner and I bought the applicator kit for around £25, brilliant stuff and I’ve now used it on three wind turbine bases and lots of other projects. A word of caution though, make sure you buy the correct gun for the correct resin, they are not all the same Sad smile

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By the time I’d bonded all twenty odd bolts and bar I had manged to convince myself it was calm enough to mix and pour. At leas calm enough to grout some of the larger rocks to the bedrock anyway. So over the next 3 hours I mixed some two tons of aggregate with 20 bags of cement in my wee Belle mixer, a nice strong stiff mix for the lower section.

After dinner of sausage, chips and baked beans, yes really Smile I went down to check it out as the tide was rising and all seemed well.

Over the last month

So, that was it really for today and as I’ve no idea what I’ve been up to this last month since we got back from Lewis I’ll ‘ave a look at me pictures.


The shed got another coat of Leyland Paints Frigate grey floor paint, well impressed with it’s durability, only painting it cos it’s dirty Smile


I bought some fine Chinese waders with the feet on the wrong legs, you gotta laugh hey Smile

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The Portree Lifeboat Stanley Watson Barker racing to Kyle ‘on a shout’, some poor girl jumped off the Skye bridge. She was pulled out of the water alive three hours later but tragically died on the way to hospital.

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Cows on a mission in Inverarish Smile

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Another anchor recovered and dragged ashore to be checked out at low water.

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A prawn, a velvet crab and me boy with some scallops Smile

That was it really, got another couple of tons loaded onto the trailer ready for tomorrow and it looks like being a half decent day Smile

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