The IWA Festival of Water 2016 takes place over the August Bank Holiday weekend. This year it’s at Pelsall at the junction of the Wyrley & Essington Canal and the Cannock Extension Canal, towards the northern edge of the Birmingham Canal Navigations.
Waterway Routes is already there. The Cheese boat will be behind us and the Jam Butty in front.
There will be land based entertainment as well as the trading boats.
The Waterway Recovery Group volunteers are busy tackling all the impossible jobs, like relocating a portable toilet which is too heavy to lift, using a pallet and a mini tractor. I wonder if anyone was in it.
Please come and say hello if you are visiting the show.
We may be hoping it stays too hot to need the central heating on our boat for a while but, sooner or later, we will need it working.
For the last two winters we have had free central heating on our boat, at least while the engine is running, after making one simple change. We’ve added an extra pump to the central heating circuit.
When the engine is running it heats the water in the calorifier through the first calorifier coil, with the rest of the engine heat wasted through the skin tanks as it heats the canal.
As originally installed the water in the calorifier can also be heated by the Webasto diesel powered central heating unit through the second calorifier coil. We’ve now installed an additional pump, shown in red on the diagram, which pumps water around the central heating system without the Webasto unit using any diesel.
With the new pump switched on the engine heats the water in the calorifier through the first coil and the heat is picked up through the second coil and pumped through the radiators. The new pump is wired with an on/off switch to the engine ignition circuit so it can only work when the engine is running.
The pump is a Jabasco 59510-0012 12v pump which has low resistance to water flow when switched off so the Webasto central heating will still work as normal when the new pump is switched off.
The result is that, within fifteen minutes of starting the engine, we have radiators throughout the boat which are hotter than when we run the Webasto unit, with no noticeable drop in the hot water temperature.
Whenever we are cruising, or just running the engine to charge the batteries, we have central heating available on demand, with no measurable running costs.
The Webasto unit can be used to keep the radiators warm during the evening, or to heat them in the morning. And our stove can supply additional warmth too.
Don’t wait until it gets cold before fitting one yourself.
We’re on the River Wey, filming for the planned River Wey and Basingstoke Canal DVDs. With the recent wet weather it’s been a nightmare finding opportunities to film when the River Wey wasn’t in flood. In the end, Monday and Tuesday provided enough great sunshine to film the River Wey.
The River Wey joins the River Thames just below Shepperton Lock. The last lock on the River Wey, as the water flows, but the first to be met by most boaters is Thames Lock.
The attractive Thames Lock is staffed, and we received a very friendly greeting from the Lock Keeper and her assistant.
Former mills at Coxes Lock provide an impressive sight.
Spectators at Pyrford Lock are dispersing as we leave the lock. They were all keen to photograph us and a lovely couple who used to own their own boat offered to help to make our life easier.
Walsham Gates is one of two flood locks along the river and we were pleased to find it open.
With so many attractive lock cottages at the sixteen locks it’s difficult to know which to film.
Another attractive cottage in a different setting at Stoke Lock.
We paused at Godalming, squashed in close to the winding point at the corner marked by the white line, but not so close we block its use.
The limit of navigation is just beyond, at Town Bridge in Godalming. This is the most southerly point boats can reach on the connected waterway system.
Yes, it really is our boat at the most southerly navigable point on the connected canal system at Godalming. We’ve previously reached the other compass point extremities so we’ve done them all.
North – Tewitfield on the Lancaster Canal
South – Godalming on the River Wey
West – Llangollen on the Llangollen Canal
East – Brandon on the River Little Ouse (also known as Brandon Creek)
We’re moored at Dapdune Wharf overnight and will be gradually making our way back downstream to Woodham Junction at the start of the Basingstoke Canal, ready to film that when the weather improves. Looking at the forecast that might be a long wait.
We’ve just finished a busy day setting up our stand at the Crick Boat Show.
We’ve moved location, a little, to get a bigger stand this year to celebrate our anniversaries, but we are still on the back row of the Boating Marquee. We’re now in the centre of the back row, between the fire doors.
It’s 10 years since we started producing DVDs and we’ve produced more than 50 DVDs.
The May issue is the 50th monthly update for our maps and we’ve produced more than 60 different maps.
Everything is in stock and we’ll be very pleased to see you. Please come and say hello if your are visiting the show – but please try to avoid the very busy middle part of Saturday if you would like a long chat.
If you would like to update your maps to the latest version then we can do it at a discounted price if you bring proof of your earlier purchase. If you email me in advance (firstname.lastname@example.org) then I can check my records and calculate the discount ready for you.