An excerpt from Wind in the Willows

Nice? It's the ONLY thing, said the Water Rat solemnly, as he leant forward for his stroke. Believe me, my young friend, there is NOTHING - absolute nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. Simply messing, he went on dreamily: messing - about - in - boats; messing----'
From 'Wind in the Willows' by Kenneth Grahame.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Painting update (14) 'Harlequin' pattern finished

They look, in my opinion, so much better than they did previously - they now have black 'lines' in place of the Ivory - nothing wrong with the Ivory but the Black just seems to make them stand out better.

What's left to do?

  • Rear deck
  • Rear doors and 'mouses ears'
  • Front deck

I am hoping that I can collect the boat sometime this weekend (4/5-August)

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Painting update (13) Coachlines

The yellow looks great
The 'Inca Gold' coachlines have now been added which really makes the red panels stand out.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Painting update (12) Sign-writing done

The finished result
W o n d e r f u l
Dave Moore applying the
finishing touches
It's exactly as I imagined it would be.  I am delighted with the results Dave has produced as, of course, I am with Mark's work.  Two professional gentlemen.

There's still a bit of work to do on the boat.  The hot weather has, understandably, led to a couple of days of delay but it looks as if I will be able to collect it next weekend (4/5-August) as long as it doesn't get too hot next week (forecast for that looks promising).  Then we'll be off to Kingswood Junction (being careful with the narrow bridge holes and at least one very narrow lock on the Stratford) and down the Grand Union to Brentford, up the Thames to Addlestone and finally back on to the Wey.

Painting update (11) Sign-writing

Dave Moore kindly doing the sign-writing that I agonised over for so long.  Thank you Dave.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Painting update (10) red panels

The deep red panels
The 'Harlequin' pattern
going back on
Well there's been a slight delay caused mainly by the hot weather and Mark only being able to paint in the early morning and late evening. Nevertheless good progress has been made and today Dave Moore is there starting the sign writing. No photos of the sign writing yet as Dave has only marked things out so far - am hoping for some tomorrow, 26-July.

The 'harlequin' pattern will be primary colours (is blue a primary colour I wonder) in each 'parallelogram' with the lines between in black (hence the background is currently black).  They were originally ivory in colour but having seen a completed pattern with black lines I preferred the look and discovered that black is more traditional than any other line colour.

The red panels will have 'Inca Gold' outlines (square traditional corners and not scalloped) which should make them stand out more than perhaps they appear to do at the moment.  The handrails will be red and that colour will extend 1 inch into the roof to ensure there is no easy place for corrosion to form at the 'paint join' where the roof turns to become the handrail.  Hope that makes sense - I know what I mean!

Monday, 23 July 2012

Painting update (9) too hot

Well it's getting to hot to paint by 10:30 which is a bit of a pain but I won't wish for colder (or wetter weather).  We'll just live with what the weather gods deliver.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Painting update (8) very shiny but

The shine shows how much depth of paint there is now which will hopefully continue to protect Leo No2 for years to come.  We'll be coming back down the GU in early August - I think we need a wide berth!

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Painting update (7) - Raddle Red

The roof is now in raddle red which Dave Moore tells me is the correct traditional colour to paint a roof and the boat is starting to look as I imagined it.  Getting quite excited now. Should (according to the latest plan) collect the boat on Monday week (30-July) but that may change depending on the weather - it just could get too hot to continue!

Adam (Briar Rose) has asked about the colour of the gunwales - I would have liked them to be raddle red but according to Dave Moore traditionally they were black and as I want to keep the painting as near traditional as possible I'll leave them black but I suspect there were boats around that had them in raddle red.  It's a bit like the red bands on a chimney between the brass bands - understand they were never red; always black - discuss?  

Painting update (6) - Shiny

This is a reflection!
Well it does look very shiny and the paint has a lot of depth.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Painting update (5)

The paint is getting some 'depth' on it now as the photo from Stem to Stern shows.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Wording for rear panel agreed

Coxes Mill (below the lock) during
a period of re-use in the early 1980s
It's been quite difficult to come up with suitable wording for the rear panel.  I have strong associations with the Basingstoke Canal (yes it is open but currently only as far as Brookwood Country Park) and the River Wey.

The issues I had to resolve were:

  • I am single so there's not two sets of initials and no sons or daughters to add
  • I don't have a trade to add (e.g. a locksmith or similar type of trade) - I could perhaps have put 'Former IT expert' but that hardly fits with the historic aspect of the waterways
  • I wanted to make sure what was done was traditional - thanks Dave (Moore) for all your advice and my mind changing too often and also to my friends (you know who you are) for their advice 
Coxes Mill and lock as it is today
with modern flats but still retaining
its historic fa├žade
I have now opted to have my initials and last name at the top of the panel and the location of my mooring (more or less) at the bottom - Coxes Mill.  I considered Coxes Lock (I preferred Mill to Lock)  Black Boy Bridge (close to my moorings but it has 'racial' overtones and perhaps wasn't suitable in these sensitive times), Pelican Wharf (the area where I moor but in fact doesn't exist and never has done), Sheets Heath Bridge (where I live and the boat was moored for a couple of years but it is on the Basingstoke) and finally I considered replicating the back panel of my Mum's cousin's Heather Bell (C & D March and Worcester - Worcester was dropped during the war!) but decided that wasn't right so it is to be Name and Coxes Mill.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Painting update (4) - back to Green

It's still in undercoat but we have returned to green.  The final colours will be green (British Racing Green is the nearest description I can give) with red (Post Office) panels, gold (well bright yellow I suppose) outlines to the panels - square ends (traditional) not scalloped and a raddle red roof.  As near to traditional as I can get in discussion with Dave Moore.

The photo on the right is the current layout - I shall keep the panels the same as the gaps are adjacent to roof drains (perish the thought of messy water marks running down a panel) and the panels were originally designed by Dave Moore - I shall have my name in place of Aquarius and Black Boy Bridge  in place of Narrowboat Fitters.  Although I moor at Addlestone and specifically at what is known as Pelican Wharf after the pub of the same name there never has been a Pelican Wharf and there certainly isn't one now. The National Trust call them the Addlestone Moorings but Addlestone is not quite what I want on the side of the boat and Black Boy Bridge (note not Black Boys Bridge or Blackboy Bridge) seems, to me, to be more appropriate.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Byfleet Boat Club Open Day

Byfleet Boat Club
The Guildford Festival Boat Gathering (GFBG) was cancelled earlier this year due to the drought so Byfleet Boat Club decided to hold an Open Day.  As it was GFBG would have been in trouble with too much water but that is the story of this summer.

Boater's Sunday Best
An excellent day was enjoyed by all who attended - we were very fortunate in that one of our members kindly (and generously) sponsored a Steel Band for the afternoon and then a Rock band for the evening.  A most enjoyable day with number of members dressing up in boater's Sunday Best.

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Painting update (3) Battleship Grey

The boat is now in battleship grey - quite a match for the appalling weather we have been enjoying. It seems Stem to Stern are getting on with things - thank you to them

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Painting Update (2)

I decided to have the windows and portholes removed - there's a little bit of rust along the cutout (again expected I understand) but seemingly (if I read the picture correctly) a slightly different shade of green under the windows or maybe that's just the effect of all the sun we have in this country.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

First report from painter

Just shows the rust that he found under the ladder and pole rack which he says has come directly (and understandably) from the bolt/screw holes - who remembers their school physics and the fact that dissimilar metals create corrosion - it's about the only thing I remember!.  The rest of the roof he tells me is fine.

The painter is Stem to Stern

The video shows Mark removing the paint from the roof.

The raddle red comes off
The worst of the rust