No Direction

No Direction is our 70ft Narrowboat which is now home to my wife Jayne and myself, it was launched on 4th February 2008.

We spend the Winters in a Marina and cruise in the warmer weather.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Back at Braunston.

Wednesday/Thursday/Friday 6/7/8th October 2010
Long Buckby Top Lock to Braunston
4.5 Miles 6 Locks 1 Tunnel.

Wednesday.   Rain first thing this morning but the forecast said sunny later so we waited for the rain to stop before setting off, into Braunston Tunnel for the fifth and final time this year, just like we did with Blisworth, we met 2 boats coming in the opposite direction but there was no bumping. We had 6 Locks today all going down, at the first Lock we waited for a Hire Boat from Valley Cruises who had followed us through the Tunnel, we shared the first 5 Locks with them but at the 6th we caught up with another boat on it's own so we nipped into the Lock with them.
We moored just after the Lock so that Jayne could go into the shop  for fresh organic bread which is baked on the premises.
We were hoping to moor opposite the Boathouse pub or just past it but as the moorings there had changed from 48hrs to 14 days on the 1st of October we didn't hold out hope but luckily we found a gap big enough to squeeze in, no large trees either so Jayne's happy as we have TV. 

Thursday.   Not much happening today, Jayne gave me a shopping list and I walked up to the Londis store in the Village, cleaned one side of the boat and windows, Jayne then decided that she needed a package posted and as I needed some small wood screws I cycled to the Chandlery and then to Braunston post office, also bought some fire lighters there, £1.09 for 15 or £2.46 for 20, amazing.

Friday.   Today nb Raymond was going into the dry dock, It had been moored with Nutfield just between the bridge and the Marina entrance since it was brought back from the Village at War Weekend, we had arranged to meet at 8.30 and when I arrived 4 other volunteers were already there so we took both boats into the Marina where Raymond, which is a Butty (a narrowboat with no engine) was then poled into the Dry Dock, the stop planks which seal the dry dock from the water in the Marina were put into place and the valve opened to drain the dock.

nb Raymond floats in the Dry Dock.

The water runs out into a brook, after about 30 minutes the boat comes to rest on the supports leaving the bottom of the boat around 15 inches above the floor, the next stage is to pressure wash the Hull and start scraping the loose bits off.

Raymond is a Wooden Narrowboat, as with all wooden Narrowboats the small gap between the planks are sealed by Oakum, an oily fibre made from old rope, this is hammered into the gap using a Caulking  Iron until it is tight and the blacking is then painted over the whole hull.

The Oakum is hammered in to the gaps.

While a couple of us were Caulking others were re-painting the top planks and other bits of woodwork.  We have the Dry Dock until late Sunday and must be out at at 8.00am Monday so more work tomorrow and Sunday. 

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