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Q & A

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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Modifying a Diesel Filler

For security reasons I am considering blanking off my normal diesel tank filler on the rear deck and installing a new filler inside the engine room with its neck above the height of the existing tank and with a breather cap. The tank has an existing external breather in one of the dollies. Are there any Boat Safety regulations I should bear in mind?

Asked by: Colin Wilks  | Thursday 13 October, 12.28pm | 2 answers

Can't start my engine!

Hello, I recently took ownership of my first boat. It was delivered to me from Rugby and had spent over a week cruising to my mooring. Since then I have been unable to start my engine(Beta Marine 38). I have installed a new starter battery and checked all terminals. My control panel clicks, and all the lights apart from temperature are iluminated. The key only turns two turns to the right thus not heating up before turning over. Although this was the same prior to me purchasing the boat, the engine used to start. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Asked by: robert statham  | Monday 10 October, 9.46pm | 3 answers

3 phases to shore supply changeover switch

my 3 phase generator output splits it's phases to 3 seperate single phased circuits (neutrals commoned upstream of and circuit breakers or RCDs). i want to use a single 1ph shore supply line via a changeover switch to power all three final circuits. this would require a 6 pole, 2 way (plus off between), ganged switch. is there any reason with reference to the boat safety scheme or BMEA code of practice why I cant use 3 seperate 2-pole changeover switches, one for each phase/circuit?

Asked by: Workboat Pug  | Wednesday 5 October, 4.34pm | 2 answers

gangplank / boarding ladder


Asked by: david paine  | Tuesday 4 October, 10.51am | 1 answer

Underfloor insulation

I am starting to fitout a narrowboat with a planked oak floor. Is it possible to put some insulation or thermal barrier under the floor?

Asked by: Chris Plumpton  | Monday 3 October, 7.45pm | 3 answers

Fernie Narrowboat

there was link to some pictures on June 20th 2008 questions. I cant get the link can anyone help? its to do with a Fernie boat. Many thanks

Asked by: Amanda Wood  | Saturday 1 October, 5.39pm | 1 answer

new but arthritic wanabe boater

i have looked at areas in ww and think middle levels nav would probably be best for me I(fewer locks) how long a cb would be ok for this nav would be ok ? i am thinking of spending a lot of time cruising in my retirement

Asked by: david trevenen  | Wednesday 28 September, 11.07pm | 1 answer

Beta marine engine 38bhp book/manual

Hi, I have just bought my first boat and am trying to get aqainted with as much as possible before moving aboard. I especially need to know what oil I need for the engine and where to get it and grease for the stern gland.
Thank you

Asked by: robert statham  | Sunday 25 September, 7.48pm | 1 answer

Wispergen heating

I have been considering buying a boat fited with a Wispergen PP16-12MD 5.5 kW unit which claims to provide heating to radiators as well as 800W of electricity at 12 volts. I have never heard of these units and can find no information about them, can you help regards Jim Hanks

Asked by: JIM HANKS  | Tuesday 20 September, 9.17pm | 2 answers

Slightly shoddy paint job

My narrowboat was painted last winter, sadly I paid before I noticed the paint flaking off and I was immediately promised that and the bloom discolouration would be fixed in warmer weather.
It was repainted, though I still think it a poor job.
I asked for money back but they were very unhelpful.
Is there any legal advice I can get?

Asked by: Tilly   | Thursday 15 September, 6.41pm | 1 answer

Does size cost more

We are experienced boaters and have done many miles on the canals. We are planning to get a canal boat for holidays and future long term cruising. I know a 58 footer i ideal but we feel the extra length of a 68-70 footer would make life much more comfortable for long term cruising. The question is, will it cost us much more in fuel to push the extra 12 foot of boat though the water. Thanks for your advice.

Asked by: Nick Woodards  | Friday 9 September, 7.32pm | 2 answers

heating gizmo

I want to know what fitting is used to heat my rads from calorifier whilst engine is running and webasto is not on (hope this makes sense)

Asked by: Bayliss Brown  | Thursday 8 September, 10.36am | 3 answers

Transporting widebeam Chester-Bristol

If we were to purchase a widebeam located on the River weaver by what means & at what coat & whom would you advise we conntact to transport boat to Kennet & Avon. (i.e mixture of road transport & cruising) This is all new to us.

Asked by: Karen Baker  | Wednesday 17 August, 1.27pm | 2 answers

boat tests / reviews

Has WW reviewed any boats built by Kingsground if so where can I find them.
Regards Iain

Asked by: Iain Concar  | Monday 15 August, 3.31pm | 4 answers

Secondary diesel tank

It's getting harder to find diesel on the canal systems, but jerry cans often breach boat safety certification. Is there a way of installing a second tank without major redesign?

Asked by: Gordon Lane  | Sunday 14 August, 11.54pm | 2 answers

Trivia question

"No matter where you are in England you are no more than ? miles from a canal or navigable waterway." A friend's just challenged me to answer this and naively assumed that I'd know. I'm guessing 30 miles but I'm hoping someone knows the proper answer. My 'canal cred' hangs in the balance ...

Asked by: Graham Pierce  | Saturday 13 August, 3.41pm | 1 answer

Running costs for 36ft narrowboat

Seeking advice on likely costs for running a canal boat in region of 15 yrs old and 36ft length (Yes, I probably need to buy a copy of IBOB but the urge has suddenly struck and I can't wait!). Last owned a boat 10 years ago, so things probably 'moved on' quite a bit since then.
Grateful for feedback on whether the figures I've pencilled in are realistic. Any info on any of the missing figures gratefully received.
Licence for canals: £560 for 36 ft
Mooring: (eg Grand Union between Kings Langley & Berkhamsted) £??
Licence for Thames: £345 (2m x 11m)
Mooring on middle Thames: (Somewhere between Wallingford & Swinford) £??
Insurance: £120??
Allowance towards 2 yearly bottom blacking: £500 pa?
Allowance for engine maintenance & repairs: £150 pa?
Diesel (Assume one 2 week holiday pa plus 15 week-ends 'messing about': roughly 200 hours running pa.): £??
Gas for season: say £50
fuel for solid fuel stove: say £50
'Hidden' costs:
Cost of finance: Loss of nett interest on £22k taken from savings account, say £600
Depreciation: Hoping this would be minimal if I choose the right boat (Small 'week-end' boats by by trusted builder always in demand??)
Anything else?
Many thanks in anticipation.

Asked by: Graham Pierce  | Saturday 13 August, 3.21pm | 5 answers

internal width

what is average internal width of a narrowboat

Asked by: Allan Bailey  | Friday 12 August, 11.41pm | 1 answer

join wood top to steel hull

Hi, a year ago we bought a 72ft wood top narrowboat and after struggling with the continuous leaks decided to recover the top with marine ply. The wood joints worked out fine with fibreglass after a few failed attempts but with the expantion etc. the join between the top and the gunwale does not want to stop cracking! Appart from replacing it in steel £££ does anyone out there know of a solution?
Any feedback would be helpfull.

Asked by: Daniel Greenway  | Friday 12 August, 11.54am | 1 answer

Recommended Oil for Gardner 2LW engine

Our Boat has a Gardener 2LW 2 cylinder 28HP Diesel Engine ( new in 1999)Engine numberAA39. What is the best Oil type to use regardless of price. We intend to renew Oil this Month

Asked by: Robert Doody  | Thursday 11 August, 9.50pm | 1 answer

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