Showing posts from July, 2016

A Brilliant Weekend

This weekend has been brilliant. We've managed to tick a few things off our never ending to-do list but we've also used the boat quite a lot too which is something we've not done too much of lately.

First of all, I finished fitting the lights in the radar arch on Friday. Last weekend, we knocked up a new centre panel for the radar arch, covered it and fitted two of our new LED lights. When Sealine built the 290, they only installed two dim halogen lights into the arch but we knew we wanted to replace every light on the boat with LED and have four in the arch to provide some decent lighting. I'm happy to say it all went well and they look and work even better than we had expected! Now to fit the remaining five down below.

Another task I attempted to tick off the list today was something to do with the electric Lofrans anchor windlass fitted to Bandit. We knew the previous owner had issues with the windlass and we've realised that when raising the anchor, it will kee…

Things To Be Doing

Over the last few days, we've made time to check off some jobs from the never-ending to-do-list.

The first job on the list was to clean all of the cockpit vinyl upholstery. After messing around with oil-covered engine parts, the cockpit was absolutely splattered with oily handprints. It was all over the fibreglass but most of it found its way into the grain of the vinyl. I took a visit to the marina chandlers and picked up some EVM spray boat cleaner. I always notice just how much of this stuff we sell but have never tried it out for myself until now. In short, the product is phenomenal! It worked fantastically for removing oil from the vinyl and on the fibreglass. In addition, we sprayed a bit onto our teak flooring and scrubbed it with a brush. To our surprise, it came up fantastically! Every single product we have previously tried in order to remove the stains from our new teak failed miserably. This EVM took it straight out. In total, we've purchased three bottles. One on …

Back to the World of Boating

Engine rebuild complete, it's now time to get back to the world of boating, don't you think? Good!

As described in my previous post, we cruised up to Saint Ives today and moored up at the quay for the afternoon. We moored up and went straight into town to grab something for lunch and a couple of drinks. It's been extremely warm over the last few days so we've got through our large box of drinks fairly quickly. After two weeks of no domestic power on Bandit, it was so nice to now have it all working again, including an ice cold fridge to cool down our drinks and food! Something we all definitely take for granted, I can assure you of that. We had our VHF radio working again, the radio, lights and water. The main thing though was our fridge/freezer.
While moored up at The Quay, we were greeting by a grey fluffy cat who clearly lives in a nearby house to the quayside. He came over and sat down right beside the canopy in the shade. Dad fed him some turkey that we had bought…

Engine Reassembly Time - Day 2

Today, we've been finishing the reassembly of Bandit's V6 petrol engine. Yesterday, we left off with heads, rockers and rocker covers bolted together. Today, we've attached the exhaust manifolds, exhaust risers, alternator, power steering pump, plugs, carburettor and drive belts.
This evening, I bring you good news!!

We got to the boat at 7:30 this morning and set straight to business. After a couple of hours, we had everything bolted on and torqued up. Before putting the plugs in, we cranked her over a couple of times to ensure the engine moved freely after adjusting the valve timing at the rockers. It all sounded and felt great so we continued to put everything back together. After three nervous cranks, she fired up and ran decently. Finally, something that's actually gone to plan! Then it was then a matter of adjusting the distributor to get the timing marks lined up to 8ºATDC. That went smoothly so we left her ticking over for about 10-15 minutes to ensured everyt…

Engine Reassembly Time - Day 1

Today has been day one of our engine rebuild. Thankfully, the new cylinder head for the right-hand side of Bandit's Volvo Penta V6 engine arrived before the weekend which means we are able to reassemble the engine and get her back up and running - thank goodness and about time!!

I was working at the marina today so my only option was to leave Dad to it and check up periodically throughout the day. Luckily, I can say it all seemed to go well.

We both got up at 7:30 and got to the boat for about 8:00 ish. I started work at 9:00 so we were able to unload the car and set up before I headed off. Where I wasn't there to see how the engine went back together, I'm unable to say whether it all went smoothly or not. All I know is that when I got back from work at 17:30, Dad had seemed to have made good progress. He managed to get both heads back on, put the 12 push rods and rockers in and timed the engine. Time will tell if it was done properly but I have faith as Dad seemed fairly …

Happy Days!

Today, I've been up to quite a bit regarding the boat.

I got up this morning and awaited the arrival of our new Volvo Penta cylinder head from Tricket Marine. As predicted by the courier, the parcel arrived at 12:20 dead on. I unwrapped it and took a quick look before then heading to the bus stop and getting the bus to Saint Ives to be at the boat for the afternoon. I didn't really plan to do anything but I thought I'd probably feel inspired to do something when I got there.

After sitting in the cockpit noticing all the mess, I thought I'd get up and do some cleaning. Yesterday, I spent the day aboard Josie (the second of three Sealine 290's on the river, and also our good friends) to help them do some electrical work to their anchor windlass. After quickly diagnosing their windlass problem, we then spent the afternoon cleaning Josie. It was amazing how much I enjoyed cleaning someone elses boat but I did. This might have encouraged me to take a closer look at our …

Another Delivery

Last week, we ordered nine new downlights for above the saloon, galley and cockpit.

The one thing we didn't like about Bandit was the little amount of lighting above the galley, saloon and cockpit. There is currently two halogen, dull lights in the radar arch but we plan to replace these two and add two more round the sides for extra lighting while sitting out in the cockpit. There is one eyeball brass light above the hob and two above the saloon. That's it. So as you can imagine, there is very little light when it gets dark and it makes it hard to see things. In Bliss, we had eight lights below which provided the perfect amount of light. They were halogen but they had a nice cool white glow. The biggest problem with halogen is the amount of power they consume.

The new ones we've ordered for Bandit were from an online shop called dmlights. We had been looking online for ages to find some lights that were LED, looked decent and were quite thin as the space between the ceili…


A little news regarding the situation with Bandit's starboard engine.

After looking online for somewhere that might be able to give us some guidance regarding our shot right-hand side cylinder head, we've been given some information that will help us move forward with the problem. The problem itself is that the head can be refurbished but at quite a cost and it will take quite a while. This isn't really ideal as we want to be using Bandit as soon as possible as the weather has really taken a turn for the best where we live. It is currently 28ºC here with little wind; perfect boating weather! For the other boater's that is...

So the news; we've purchased a brand new cylinder head for the engine. We ordered it from Tricket Marine in Poole as they have 13 available. The good news is that they will ship it from their main store in France and it'll be at their location in Poole in a couple of days time. We've paid extra for next day delivery to our home in Cambr…

Injured Swan Updates

Two weeks ago at work, we captured an injured father swan who had managed to get a large fish hook caught in his tongue. We spent hours trying to capture the poor swan and finally got him into the RSPCA van and watched him head off to Kings Lynn where he would spend the next week in care.

Today I bring you good news! This swan was returned to the boatyard on Thursday of this week where he was greeted by his partner swan and their four cygnets. The RSPCA lady told us that they very rarely take a father swan away from their 'home' if they have cygnets but this was an exception as he needed to have his tongue treated as soon as possible.

Below are some pictures captured by the boatyard when our swan was returned to the marina.
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Some New Decals

Not too long ago, I removed the transom door to give it a good clean and replace the hinges. While I was polishing the gel coat, I realised that there used to be a 'Sealine' word decal on the back. After thinking about it, I thought it would be nice to have another on the door as it would show from behind. I looked on the internet and came across Naughty Gull graphics who sell chrome Sealine decals. We ended up buying two chrome decals which came to about £25 and yesterday they arrived while we were at the boat removing the heads from Bandit's starboard engine.

The one purchase contained two chrome Sealine decals; one we placed on the transom door where one had previously been and the other one we didn't really know what to do with. We wanted to put it somewhere as they were both too nice to not use. After a lot of pondering, we ended up putting the last one on the rear side of the radar arch. This way, it can still be seen inside the boat and also from the outside whe…

"Off With Her Head!!"

The day has finally arrived where we have to dismantle Bandit's starboard V6 engine. It was never going to be fun but it's something that we need to do if this engine is ever going to run smoothly again.

When we bought the boat back in December of last year, we had no idea that we'd have to completely strip down the engine and have the heads re-machined and possibly new valves fitted. At this moment in time (before we've even touched the engine), we have no idea what to expect when we get these heads off. It could either be an expensive disaster or something as simple as a sticky/burnt inlet or exhaust valve. Our issues lie with number three cylinder. We've diagnosed that it is not producing the power that it should and Dad reckons we have a burnt valve.

We woke up at 7am today and headed straight for the boatyard. We packed all of our new tools and whatever else we needed such as cardboard to lay the oily parts on without destroying our expensive teak flooring.