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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Wednesday 3 April 2024

The saga of the stove continues.

Our week with Toffee has been a joy and would have been just perfect if it hadn't been for the weather. Being young, her energy levels are off the scale and if she could talk, would nag us incessantly to go out for walks. But plead as much as she likes, with the atrocious weather of late, conditions are far from ideal for long walks. The towpath along the Erewash is particularly bad, so the only place to go without sinking into the mud was along the old disused Nottingham canal. Luckily, today (Tuesday) it really felt like spring had finally sprung and that long awaited walk could finally happen.

Remember the sago of our stove?. The issues with the CO alarm going off was, thankfully, resolved, but now the latest problem has been tar running down the wall and chimney inside the boat! Okay, tar can sometimes be seen around the flue on the outside which occasionally flows down the cabin side, a lot depends on how the chimney is fitted, whether an inner skin is used and which coal is bought, but when it starts to run down on the inside....well that was unacceptable.

Took some cleaning and the smell was pretty bad.

This last week it's been cold and wet, so the stove had to remain lit for warmth. It was the smell that grabbed our attention first, and the side of the copper kettle was covered with the stuff. No way could anything be done until the stove was cold, so when the sun finally put in an appearance, it was the perfect opportunity to let the fire go out and for Ian to see if he could reseal the top of the flue. Well, what appeared to be a simple job turned into a massive one. 

First, the chimney was swept, which resulted in the brush becoming well and truly jammed! A lump hammer and a lot of bashing on the handle did the trick, thoughts of having the brush stuck almost 3/4 down the chimney didn't bear thinking about.  The resulting soot and congealed material (probably tar) was found to be the culprit.

Clumps of the stuff

 Next he applied heatproof silicone on top of the old fire rope, hoping this would seal the flue surround to stop the tar from spilling out…another failure as the silicone didn't stick at all! Then, as he was trying to dig the newly applied silicone out to start over, a small section of the chimney liner broke away! Oh, eck...now what??? He decided to remove the old fire rope, but that rope was covered in nasty stuff and had gone solid, so a drill was needed to make a few holes to allow a sharpened screwdriver to start the removal. Crikey, it was awful stuff to remove having gone fibrous and took nearly 2 hours to dig out!

The old silicon removed and new was to be applied.

Old fire rope cavity ready to be filled.

With that job done, the gully was refilled with the silicone, and allowed to cure overnight. So we hope this will be the end of it for the time being. A bodge job indeed, as we will have to replace the collar and flue pipe once the stove is allowed to go out for good. Hopefully the bodge will last long enough to see us through this month!

And the ducklings are down to 12!


Marilyn, nb Waka Huia said...

The man who can strikes again! I bet at times he wished he couldn't though ...

And I notice the shirtsleeves were short!


Ian and Irene Jameison said...

He loves it Marilyn, keeps him out of mischief, and you know he is abnormal and doesn't feel the cold!

Lisa said...

So how is the stove and has the MB been fixed?
Don't keep us in suspenders. Hello Marilyn by the way.

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