Thursday, 28 February 2013

It's funny what you can find on the towpath

Dydd Gwyl Dewi DDa pawb! (Happy Saint Dai's Day everyone!) 

While cycling the towpath, towards Gas Street Basin, I approached NB The Crusty Crow, Roy shouted to me, "wanna buy an engine mate?"
I replied "As it happens I do, but not another BMC 1.8! But I could be interested in some bits"
Roy, it's owner, is a fellow member of the Canalworld forum.
Roy of NB The Crusty Crow, with the BMC 1.8 engine he had just replaced, entertains a couple of local lads.

I headed, as usual, for the Canalside Cafe for some nice ales, at the Tap & Spile I had a dodgy pint of Tim Taylor's Landlord.
Roy told me that the Craven Arms had re-opened after a re-fit and takeover by the Black Country Brewery. It was a great tip, it's a lovely pub in Upper Gough Street and the friendly hosts Chris & Sharon keep 8 ales and a few ciders, well worth a visit and an easy 5 minute walk from the canal.
Here is an article from the Birmingham Mail :-

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Slowly edging towards self sufficiency

A lovely vintage 1912 Singer 29K15 cobbler's treadle sewing machine has been added to the workshop. Another load of jobs that can be done without needing electricity ;o)

The 29K is capable of intricate stitches through leather, canvas and even 1/4" ply! 
The hand wheel can be used for more difficult jobs that need to be done in a more controlled way than is possible with the treadle.
I'm going to try to replace the workbench in the background with a treadle table that I can swap a wood lathe, grinders, sanders etc.

My old treadle jigsaw can be used for wood and some metals, now I 'd like to rig a treadle table that will take a wood lathe, grindstone and sander.
Posed? How dare you? I was using everything in my 'Bob the builder' toolbelt.
Top sheets all fitted, just need some boards under the edges to stop the water running down the bulkheads and the weighted poles on the bottoms of the greenhouse covers ((that allow them to be rolled up). We've got the bottom sheets, but the metalwork needs rust treatment and painting and the pine retainers will be replaced with recycled oak. My new sewing machine will come in handy, shaping Freyja's tugdeck cover to make a snug fit around the plank carrier.
We lifted the chicken coup out, so that I could work on the water side of Christina, I put my foot on the 'tugdeck' and it went straight through! So that will be another stack of wood and marine ply needed. Everything we fix reveals another shop of horrors.
Next we need new mattress pieces for the bed 'ole in Christina and new chimneys for both Freyja and Christina.


Friday, 1 February 2013

Oh dear, my mates up to no good

This was during a biker rally in the 70s, I'm afraid things sometimes got out of hand. Found this pic but don't remember any details. Hate to see this now ;o(