Painting a narrowboat water-tank – The third coming…..

Painting a narrowboat water-tank – The third coming…..

** Update 5th June, 2021.**

Corroded watertank
Corroded watertank

How long does Vactan last?

I’d say the last coat, (of Vactan), stopped working around 12 months ago. That’s around the summer of 2020, so it lasted around 2 years.

The symptoms of it stopping working were; flaking into the watertank, sinking to the bottom, and after some time, maybe a year, going into and clogging the waterpump filter.

That is: the very thin coating that is Vactan eventually flaked off, sometimes taking a coat of the Rylards beneath it, sometimes not, coming free from the sides of the tank and falling to the bottom…

Dirty narrowboat watertank
Dirty narrowboat watertank

This is what the watertank looked like as I started work on it.

It’s a combination of the paints that I’ve talked about lower down in this post. As you can see, some of it has been flaked off, either by me going around with my

Triangular headed scraper
Triangular headed scraper

or come away over the course of time.

There isn’t much bare metal, nor is there a lot of the original iron oxide that I put on there to start with.

It took from the 27th July 2018 to get fully to this point. So 3 years.

Prep for a brighter better future (for your watertank)

In my case, the prepping is already done…

The majority of the paint remains intact on the layers beneath. To prep in this case, I need to remove the flaking paint. Then make sure the surface is good to receive another 2 coats of Vactan.

Doesn’t take long. Maybe an hour to get it all off.

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In and around Cropredy

In and around Cropredy

It’s taken a while to get to this point….

Sailing from Napton to Claydon

After being stuck in Flecknoe for so long with the bad weather, things eventually improved and I managed to move the boat down from the Grand Union canal onto the Oxford canal via Napton Junction.

Once I’d issued my crew with badges, they set about their businesses…

Sailing took from 11am to 7pm, so about 8 hours in total including a little stop-off for lunch.

The weather was mostly fine. Some rain, some sun, sometimes both at the same time, which was better than the forecast, which had pictures of rain clouds?

Managed to take some pictures on the way down.

Here’s a picture of my crew…

From left to right: Kerri, Craig, Aurelia and Finn

For those who haven’t been introduced; Aurelia is Craig’s daughter and Finn is Kerri’s son. Kerri and Craig got married about 5 years ago, and fairly obviously, but in case you missed it, Kerri is my sister!


We stopped for lunch in Fenny Compton and had a game of cards called Taco, Cat, Goat, Cheese, Pizza which basically involved everyone thumping each others hands on the table, or pretending to be gorilla, (thump chest), or narwhal’s, (make triangle above head), thumping the table or whatever, (groundhog)…. then thumping each others hands.

I wasn’t very good at pretending to be the animals, otherwise, I did pretty well considering it was the first time I had played! Kids loved it though, although Aurelia seemed to think she was a Narwhal whatever animal came up.

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Bye bye Bosworth

Bye bye Bosworth

Hello rainy Flecknoe.

Yes my time ran out in Leicestershire. I’ve decided to re-locate down here to Flecknoe. On balance of things, I think that’s the best thing to do.

As with the other jobs that have happened to me in the past, this one went pretty much the same way. Still, not to worry. We have to learn from the experience and move on.

I left Sodexo on good terms, (with most people).


I did enjoy my time here, and I think in many ways the job working at the test center did me a lot of good.

Before that, I didn’t really realise how depressed and low I had become. My time there made me aware of this, and a couple of other things which it would’ve been impossible to see on my own.

Still, things started to go strange on a social level with certain people and the job itself changed and became a lot more boring.

Bosworth was perhaps my favorite place. The people there were the friendliest I’ve met anywhere on the canal network. Or even anywhere in the UK. Full stop.

All good things must come to an end.

Here’s some pictures from my final days up that way.

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Highs and lows of lockdown year 2020

Highs and lows of lockdown year 2020

To comemorate it’s passing, I’m mounting a late vigil here on the blog.

Many people say they won’t miss it.

It started with some large wildfires and bad environmental stuff and worked it’s way up to a global pandemic!

No need to be frustrated though… The solution is here!

Look at it from above….

3 months on and into 2021. I’ve had a look through and gathered what I thought might be some of the best (and worst) parts of my 2020.

The lows

The highs

Photo gallery

Take a brief look at my photo gallery for the year.

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Bitcoin – Narrowboaters buying guide!

Bitcoin – Narrowboaters buying guide!


Just because you live on a narrowboat doesn’t mean you can’t buy Bitcoin!

Hell no……

Not wanting to be boring or obvious, but things are changing in the asset classes of finance.

Gold and the Dollar

An asset is something someone who has capital (money), to put their capital (money) into in the hope that the value of that asset will increase over time.

Traditional hedges have been the yellow stuff and the greenback.

Since the start of the pandemic, gold especially has seen it’s once unchallenged status as ‘safe haven’ removed.

Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffet dropped his holding in Barrick Gold Corp just last week, stating, ‘It’s not what it used to be’.

I’ve witnessed this myself. Gold’s disconnected entirely with risk events, like pandemics or wars, or anything else you care to mention.

The main risk event on the horizon at the moment is this one


As the vaccine roll-out increases and punters return to everyday life as pre-pandemic. They will have large stores of cash, to spend on, whatever.

This increased spending on – whatever – will lead to a spike in inflation as shoppers hit the streets looking to spend, spend, spend.

Bitcoin is not a traditional fiat denomination.

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Shackerstone -> Market Bosworth

Shackerstone -> Market Bosworth

Bosworth, as they call it…..

There is a market but it’s closed… in these COVID times…..

New Job

So I’m working in the local test centre, testing individuals for COVID. It’s long shifts, then a few days off.

I’m writing this on one of my days off.

Tomorrow, I start work again. 7.30am start. 8.30pm finish.

It’s called a LTS, or local test centre. It takes about 15 minutes to get there in the car.


As you can see from the picture, I’m moored opposite a faux Dutch style housing estate.

The houses are three story, which has had the unexpected effect of creating a downdraft for my fire.

A downdraft can be caused, according to Geoffrey at Homefire stoves, wherever there is a taller structure than your chimney stack standing between you and the oncoming wind.

When the wind blows over these houses, the fire doesn’t do so good.


Bosworth MArina
Bosworth Marina

Apart from that, Bosworth is just Bonnie. Close to the waterpoint. 10 Minutes walk up to the village and village shop. Right behind the Bosworth Marina, where I dropped in yesterday to buy some calor.

£29.75 for 13kg compared to the £36 I paid at Weltonfield Narrowboats. What a joke….

There’s a slight chandlers and other everyday nik-naks on sale. Beer and whisky…. Lot’s of these marina boaters get drunk, slip off the pontoons and find themselves in 12ft of water. It’s a common cause of death the people at Barton Turns marina said. They’d had at least 2 ppl who’d died that way. But Barton Turns marina is a big marina.

Still. Deep water and alcohol don’t mix well.

At least if you fall in on the cut, you can stand up and walk to shore!

Here’s another picture of the boat.

Bonnie Lady in Bosworth
Close to the amenities
Locked down in Shackerstone

Locked down in Shackerstone

Been here for going on a month now.

Movement is not encouraged on the canal networks at this moment.

Only ‘essential’ travel is permitted. This basically means when your toilet needs emptying, or your water-tank needs filling.

Traffic is down to 0.

Very few boats moving around. 0 this week so far.

Empty narrowboat water-tank
Empty water-tank

This is how my water-tank looked at the end of last week.

That’s about a day’s worth of water in the bottom.

I couldn’t really move because the canal was iced over.

Moving whilst there’s ice isn’t really advisable. Some ppl get shirty when you move past their boats when there’s thick ice. Some ppl get angry even when it’s thin ice. ‘It might damage my boat’.

It’s better to let it thaw out. Plus, thick ice makes it difficult to navigate.

Luckily, when I moved down to get water, a boat had gone on before me and it was just a case of following his trail of broken ice!

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