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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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battery banks

I read so many ideas about battery banks and also told 5 110amp leisure is the maximum what is this the reason for this

Asked by: mick turner  | Thursday 18 February, 4.36pm | 3 answers

Problems with old engine/gearbox

We are very fortunate in that friends lend us their dutch barge, built 1925, which is based in France. The problem is that occasionally when putting the long gear lever into the neutral position there is a short delay before the change takes place in the gearbox. This can be awkward when manoevering into locks. The engine is a Kromhout 52 hp 3TS117 diesel fitted in 1960.
David Bowker

Asked by: David Bowker  | Monday 15 February, 2.23pm | 4 answers

Using Generator as electric hook up problem.

I have purchased a Generator (Clarke FG3000/2.8kva), to use via my elctric hook up socket. On the boat i have a sterling iverter/charger(1600watts) which the hook up passes through and the inverter automatically recognises if it's the engine charging the batteries or whether it's on the hook up.
My problem is that when i connect the gen to the inverter it switches to "shoreline power and fast charge" for about 10-20 seconds and then switches off to drawing power straight from the batteries and then back to "shoreline power" and so forth, when it switches to "shoreline" you can hear the gen go under load and then off, in time with the inverter. Do i need to buy a special generator for use with the inverter ?
The generator does run 230volt appliances if plugged directly into it and powers them fine, it only plays up when i try to use it as my shoreline power.
I don't like to run my engine every day to charge my batteries and use the inverter for my 230 volt equipment, which is why i have bought the generator. Thanks for taking the time to read this and all advice is gratefully received. Lee.

Asked by: Lee Farrell  | Sunday 14 February, 7.25pm | 3 answers


Can anyone help me decide the best way forward with invertors. I was looking at a victron invertor 12/3000/120-16 at around £2k, however someone mentioned in passing that getting small invertors which would connect to each plug socket would be 1) less draining on the battery power as these large victron actually use lots of power, and 2) would work out a lot cheaper as you can pick the small invertors up for around £20 each.
I have got quite confused about it all and would be grateful for any advice or ideas.

Asked by: pippa wood  | Saturday 13 February, 3.32pm | 2 answers

Instant water heaters

I'm looking at buying a boat which only has a calorifier which is no good as there are days when work means I won't be able to run the engine. I was told that as the boat was built in 2005 I can't fit an instant water heater but I can't find any info in the boat safety guidelines indicating that this is true. Can anyone confirm or deny? Thanks

Asked by: Jenni McCalman  | Saturday 13 February, 2.11pm | 5 answers

Maximum dimensions on The Broads

I have enjoyed boating on The Broads and the recent article in WW but have been unable to discover the maximum recommended dimensions for the smaller cuts. E.g. both Catfield Dyke and Waxham new cut have signs warning that they are only suitable for smaller boats but was size is a smaller boat?

Asked by: Simon Barber  | Friday 12 February, 6.43pm | 1 answer

electrical quieries

i see adverts for tvs and travel sat which seem exspensive is it not possible to use say a normal say 22" flat screen tv and my hd skybox on a boat without a genni or bieng hooked up to a landline would an inverter not do the job

Asked by: Mike Phipps  | Wednesday 10 February, 5.01pm | 8 answers

Jump starting a narrowboat engine

If the starter battery is flat, will connecting the deep discharge domestic battery bank to the starter battery and starting the engine cause damage to the domestic battery bank?

Asked by: Colin Wilks  | Monday 8 February, 12.53pm | 6 answers

Domestic water leakage.

I have recently noticed my water tank suddenly losing alot of water over a period of three days after being filled up. There is no leak between the stop tap and pump, and after isolating the tank by switching off the stop tap, there is no no leak from the tank, so I drew the conclusion it was a pipe work leak, but, however, when the pump was switched back on, it only runs when I actually put a tap on.
I get some water in the bilge, but it doesn't seem enough to have come from the tank considering how much it goes down. The boat is 55 feet long. Is it possible to have a leak on the pipe work without it triggering the pump? It is a 12 volt automatic ShurFlo pump. None of my taps are leaking, so I'm well baffled. Any suggestions?

Asked by: Sean  | Saturday 6 February, 1.04pm | 3 answers

Frost damage in Paloma Water heater

Hi our relatives Paloma water heater has sustained some frost damamge during the severe cold spell. The hole is easily accessible so are there any quick and simple ways of repairing it?

Asked by: Sharron Watson  | Friday 5 February, 2.48pm | 3 answers

mooring spikes

what were the details of the robust mooring spikes recommended in the November 2009 magazine?

Asked by: jenny tyte  | Thursday 4 February, 2.32pm | 1 answer

Long term narrow boat hire

What's the best way to hire a narrow boat for 2 - 3 months?

Asked by: Liz Galliver  | Tuesday 2 February, 8.34pm | 1 answer


anybody out there-what happened to narrowboat BIX after the Bryces finished navigating the system for many years-did the piano stay on board

Asked by: gaz bee  | Sunday 31 January, 6.29pm | 3 answers


can u tell me what the best way to heat a wide beam is best type of heating the square footage is 592

Asked by: sindy  | Friday 29 January, 7.29pm | 1 answer

re paint

hi ive just had waterhaven repainted a very good job and would like to share it with your mag how can i email a pic to you please? i have a pic of her morred at gayton junction on the grand union northants.

Asked by: steve townhill  | Wednesday 27 January, 6.07pm | no answers yet - add one

DIY on a Boat

I cant help noticing that the DIY projects in the magazine are not really the sort of thing you can do yourself on a boat without access to a workshop. To many boaters the space required to store all the tools required for some projects would be better utilised storing important things needed for day to day living. We dont all have access to routers bench saw etc.

Asked by: Maffi  | Monday 25 January, 12.58pm | 1 answer


how do i sent photos to you

Asked by: sue battman  | Monday 25 January, 12.54pm | 2 answers

Water pump problem

Hi I have a sureflo water pump on 50ft narrowboat. The pump has started to play up alittle. It dose not kick in as soon as you turn the tap on it can take anything from 2-15 mins.Can you please help as it's starting to drive us mad.

Asked by: Dean Richardson  | Sunday 24 January, 11.31pm | 1 answer

safe moorings from Marple to Manchester

We intend going along the Macclesfield canal to Marple junction, where do we moor between there and Manchester centre and beyond?

Asked by: Robert Bush  | Thursday 21 January, 4.18pm | 1 answer

boat holiday

we are having a two week boat holiday in may from nuneaton.braunston,leicester,long eaton,fradley junction,nuneaton,with 6hour cruising a day will we be able to do this round route ok any problems to look out for

Asked by: malcolm kersley  | Tuesday 19 January, 10.59pm | 2 answers

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