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Got a technical question or a boating query? Post your quandaries here and pick the brains of the WW team. You can also add your answers to others' questions, or browse through previous answers.

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compressor driven air horn

In April's edition on sound sinals there is a picture of an air horn. Have you details of make and where obtainable from please?

Asked by: David Brixey  | Wednesday 24 March, 7.02pm | 1 answer

Narrow Boat interior

During the summer i had my narrow boat saloon re lined with oak faced ply boards.It looked very nice with a gloss finish.
I have today visited my boat after the three month had elapsed since the work was carried out and was depressed to find that some areas of the board had gone almost black in colour on the port side only.one area was under a window
Has anyone experienced this and can the board be sanded down to remove the discolouration or perhaps sanded down and stained .Would be interested to know the cause and how to first repair the damege and then to prevent a reccurence

Asked by: edward Connolly  | Tuesday 23 March, 7.07pm | 4 answers

supliers of solar panels

have you a list of supliers of solar panels suitable for narrow boat use

Asked by: D A LINDSAY  | Tuesday 23 March, 8.59am | 3 answers

Batteries - 6 Volt or 12 Volt?

I am looking into replacing my battery bank of 4 x 135 AH lead acid batteries. Someone has recommended that 6 volt batteries provide better performance and have a longer life. Are two pairs of 6 volt batteries in series, connected together in parallel a better bet than four 12 volt batteries in parallel? The boat has Sterling charge controllers for both shore power and alternators.

Asked by: Colin Wilks  | Tuesday 23 March, 7.09am | 1 answer

advice on problematic water tank in new boat sought

My husband and I bought a new boat in December 2009. We understand it was completed in August 2009. It has a steel water tank. Water from the tank is brown, we have drained it several times, and there seems to be rust present. The cap is also rusty. Engineers from the boat company are coming to examine the tank and advise on action: probably to repaint. We are not happy with the situation, and would welcome some advice. Would repainting be an adequate solution? Should we get an independent survey for advice, and should we ask for compensation? Yours, Pauline Cheeseman

Asked by: pauline cheeseman  | Monday 22 March, 2.32pm | 1 answer


I am familiar with "trad" and "cruiser" sterns. What is a "semi-trad" stern like?

Asked by: A. J. Curtis  | Friday 19 March, 4.50pm | 2 answers

diesel-electric propulsion

Where can I find out about diesel-electric propulsion? I am contemplating a newbuild narrowboat and wonder if the diesel engine could be in the bow so there is little sound in the stern with an electric drive.

Asked by: A. J. Curtis  | Friday 19 March, 4.07pm | 4 answers

Renting canal boats

Do you know of any where that rents narrow boats long term? Cant find ANY! Looking to rent for one maybe two years.
Many thanks

Asked by: natasha  | Wednesday 17 March, 8.13pm | 1 answer

Quasi-Sine Wave/Apple MacBook

I have a Quasi-Sine Wave Inverter on board. Having recently bought an Apple MacBook, I would like some advice:
1. Can I run the MacBook via the Inverter supply.
2. If not - can I fully charge the MacBook battery without damaging it?
3. Is it possible to run a MacBook directly of the 12 volt supply (possibly using some kind of adaplor)?
Any advise would be appreciated.
Mike Brown

Asked by: Mike Brown  | Monday 15 March, 12.29pm | 10 answers


can you re-register a boats registered name to a new name, how and at what cost

Asked by: paul paintin  | Saturday 13 March, 3.54pm | 1 answer

seal for life batteries or top up type

having had 3 110amp per hour batteries on my boat for the last 5 years. I feel they have lasted well being helped by a good battery management and solar panel charging system. However this last year I feel the bateries have started to fail. Due to positioning of batteries it is quite a problem to top them up. Sealed for life batteries seem a good idea but will they cope with the marine charging system and can you explain how they can be maintained in tip top condition if they are sealed, can I expect them to last at least as long as my top up ones have.

Asked by: adrian hambleton  | Friday 12 March, 7.27pm | 1 answer

Waterproofing windows

Several of my anodised aluminium square windows and portholes are leaking, so I am planning to remove and reseal them. Do you have any tips on how to do this, especially what is the best sealer? Is bathroom silicon sealer suitable? I understand that you unscrew the window from the outside so that the outer and inner parts of the window then separate? Many thanks.

Asked by: Philip Dale  | Friday 12 March, 11.35am | 4 answers

sterilize a stainless steel tank

what would you use to sterilize a stainless steel water tank

Asked by: lynda.holgate@ntlworld.com  | Thursday 11 March, 2.10pm | 1 answer

contents insurance

Can anyone tell me who does reasonablly priced contents insurance for living aboard, constant cruising,with no home insurance policy to use.

Asked by: ann melloy  | Tuesday 9 March, 11.27am | no answers yet - add one

dock size

Can I tie down a 26ft long boat to a 20 ft long dock? the dock is at the end of a canal. Thanks,

Asked by: Marisa Feito  | Monday 8 March, 6.55pm | 2 answers

Boat leasing

I would like to rent a 57 foot narrowboat for 6-8 weeks during June and July to see whether I like the lifestyle prior to buying one and cruise continually. Can anyone recommend the best way to do this please and what to look out for?

Asked by: Michael Hammill  | Tuesday 2 March, 6.54pm | 6 answers


I am looking for a suitable VHF radio for cruising the tidal Trent in a 60' narrowboat

Asked by: Rob Henry  | Tuesday 2 March, 6.12pm | 5 answers

Chimney collar seal

Hello After having my stove lit for a few days last month (very cold weather)after about 24hrs a black liquid started to run down the insde of the flue pipe. I can only think this may be tar leaking through the seal between the chimney flue pipe and the collar where the chimnry pot fits.Can anyone advise what should be used for this seal so i could renew it. Or if anyone has similar problems.

Asked by: neil  | Monday 1 March, 11.13pm | 3 answers

disabled boaters dont get reduction on licence

can anyone tell me why disable fishermen get a reduction in there licence but the ea dont give disable boaters a reduction in there licence is it discrimination and how many disabled boaters r there and how would u go about getting the ea to change there policy

Asked by: david gregory  | Monday 1 March, 7.54pm | no answers yet - add one

Marine Battery chareger

Can anyone tell me what size marine battery charger i would need to be able to charge 2x 180amp leisure batteries.Wat amperage output would i need and can anyone recomend one and where to get it.

Asked by: edward Connolly  | Monday 1 March, 3.26pm | 2 answers

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