Monday, 21 July 2014

NB Rolling Wave

OK ... I've done the sums. I can sell my house, buy an acre or so to return to, buy a narrowboat for AU$80K and fund a comfortable 12 months cruising with AU$500/wk and have enough capital left over to build on the block when I return.

Sounds great eh !

In that, I give up my current position by the beach in outer metro Perth ... which is pretty choice and comfortable ... and post-GFC is once again appreciating at a good rate.

Plus ... there are two unresolved issues. I have a cat that is my entire family. I could leave her with friends or take her with me ... either way ... that would need to be sorted.

The other is that I have no-one (apart from Puss) to travel with. I have an ex that is interested but prefers France and Europe. Though, the last time I booked ... a different ex backed out at the last minute to pursue a relationship, thus forcing me to cancel everything, which left me about $2k out of pocket. As the saying goes, once burnt, twice shy.

 Now ... what am I getting to ???

Another boat review actually ... and now I know it's do-able, all be it unlikely, accompanied by an unresolved issue or two. The fact it is over my AU$80k budget is immaterial ... I can justify the extra in that nothing needs to be spent before setting off and at an asking price of GBP55,000 I can accommodate the additional outlay.

OK ... enough about me ... back to boats. I recently reviewed a boat named 'Bliss' which I notice has had a deposit taken. I didn't expect it to last.

This boat is at ABNB brokerage also.

It is a modern trad style with the boatman's cabin and walk-through engine room. Not my favourite configuration ... but "Rolling Wave" is only a tad above my conservative budget ... so "theoretically" it is do-able. Though it will sell reasonable quickly.

You can download the PDF brochure here.

Length: 57ft 0in

Build & Fitout: Canal Transport Services

Style: Trad with Boatmans Cabin

Year registered: 2003

Certification: BSS to 2015, RCD issued 2003

 Engine: Kelvin K2 diesel

Bow thruster: None

Plating: 10/6/5/4

Last out of water: March 2012

Water tank: 115gall (approx) polypropylene

The bow sports a nicely constructed cratch, well shaped and framed to retain it's form over time.

Nicely painted "livery" including roses and castles and a very traditional stern and deck.

Boatman's cabin with all the traditional adornments.

Very tidy and tasty engine room. I can live without one, but I could certainly live with this one.

A pump out loo and a full width bathroom, both of which are preferred by me.

Headroom: 6ft 4in, bmc 5ft 3in

Fit-out materials: Oak panels. Bmc traditionally scumbled & decorated by Dave Moore. Floors in carpet tiles except painted floorboards in bmc & Hexagrip in engine room

Insulation: Polystyrene

Berths: 4

Berth sizes: 6ft 6in x 4ft 2in permanent double crossbed in boatmans cabin, 6ft 10in x 3ft 9in double on L-shape dinette

Galley looking fore and aft - nicely appointed, light and workable. A great arrangement.

Dining area and second double bed when required.

Fridge: LEC 4cu ft 12V

Washer/dryer: None

WC: Sealand Vacuflush pump-out wc

Shower: over bath with laminated splashback

Cooker: Vanette built-in hob & oven - gas

Water heating: C/heating + engine + 230V immersion heater > calorifier

 Cabin heating: Alde gas c/heating > 3 rads, s/f stove, s/f range to bmc

 Mains 230V: Landline, Victron 2kW pure sine wave inverter/charger

 Other: Glazed cratch with zipped acrylic cover. Electric self pump-out kit.

Salon, looking aft ... and the heater.

All in all ... for a trad with engine room ... a good layout and priced to sell. It was built in 2003 and appears to have been maintained. It was nicely put together to begin with ... so this will become someone's pride and joy ... and quite soon I would think.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Lock videos

I know this post will come in handy the next time someone asks how locks work.

It doesn't happen often as most people simply feign interest when I talk narrowboats.

Anyhoots ... here is a video of a boat descending through a lock.

The next video shows a boat ascending a flight of locks. Unfortunately, you don't get as good a view of the process when ascending, unless it filmed from above (I'll try an edit in a better one later).

And this video is just to remind aussies about the weather during the less celsius-friendly months. Still looks good though  : )

Friday, 23 May 2014

Got a spare AU$105K ??

I know I am not the most frequent or enthusiastic blogger, though I'm always doing something "narrowboat" at any point in time.

I've been on the  brokerage website and seen a few blog-worthy things. I found "Bliss" at AU105k ... though it would be reasonable to settle around AU$98k-ish in current market (or from GBP 57,500 down to GBP 53,500) assuming no issues from survey.

Often I review small boats.

However this is about a 2008 58' 3" boat by Liverpool Boats fitted out by New Boat Co. and named "Bliss".

I'm quite sure (without looking it up) Liverpool boats and New Boat Co. are the pair that build and fit the Carefree Cruising share boats ... which I like a lot and will review in the fullness of time.

[Correction : The Northwich Boat Co. fitout the CC share boats]

I'm not a fan of the interior colours or the exterior colours, but they can be changed or tweaked quite easily.

I am a fan of reverse layouts and this particular boat has some of my favourite design features.

If the term "open plan" can be applied to narrowboat design ... then this boat is as open plan as any you may find.


Style: Cruiser stern

Year registered: 2008

Certification: BSS to 2017

Engine: Isuzu 35 diesel

Bow thruster: Vetus 12V 55kgf 4hp

Plating: 10/6/5/4

Last out of water: March 2013

Water tank: 118 gallons stainless steel

Headroom: 6ft 6in

Fit-out materials: Headlining (ceiling), cabin and hull sides lined in oak panels, Bulkheads (partitions) in oak panels. Floor fitted with beige carpet in bedroom and saloon, wood effect vinyl in shower room and galley.

Insulation: Spray foam

Berths: 2+2

Berth sizes: 6ft 3in x 4ft 0in permanent double; 6ft 3in x 3ft 10in double on raised Pullman dinette

Fridge: Shoreline 4cu ft 12V

Washer/dryer: None

WC: Sani Marin macerator flush pump-out wc to remote tank

Shower: in tiled quadrant cubicle with curved doors

Cooker: Spinflo hob, oven & separate grill; 800W microwave

Water heating: Central heating & engine to calorifier

Cabin heating: Eberspacher diesel central heating to rads

Mains 230V: Landline, Sterling 1.8kW modified sine wave inverter

Other: Reverse layout. Removable fitted pram cover and secondary double glazing fitted to most windows.

Location: River Great Ouse in Cambridgeshire


1.  The TV faces up and down the length of the boat and not side to side. This means from the back steps, through the galley and the dinette and from the salon of course, the TV is viewable. Counting the steps as a seat ... 7 seats and any standing position in the galley can view the TV.

Also, by housing the media centre in the same location as the TV (which is logical) ... and while cruising ... it is a straight path from the tiller to the media centre for using a remote control.

2.  The dinette has a reversing back support. This means by pivoting the back support of the salon-side dinette seat ... the seat turns from the dinette toward the salon.

3.  The galley is at the base of the steps ... ideal for putting the kettle on or making a snack while cruising. The galley layout also creates two areas where two people can prep food without getting in each other's way (too much). It's difficult to stay out of anyone's way on a narrowboat.

4.  It has a pump out loo. Any regular reader knows that I only ever want to deal with waste once ... and having as little involvement in that "once" as possible. 

5.  Pretty much everything is what and where I would choose. Two minor changes though. Perhaps one large rectangular sink (& lid) in the galley rather than the two round sinks.

And ... maybe, a full-width bathroom rather than the bathroom with passage. Like so ...

And the forward cabin would appear so ...

I would happily take "Bliss" as is.

From tip to stern and for my purpose, it would be a very nice liveaboard and make me smile muchly.

Now ... to spend a year or so cruising ... I just need to work out what's involved and how much taking Puss to and fro the UK would cost ... sell the house ... sell the business ... put my belongings in storage ... find a partner to do this with ... buy a block of land to return to ... have the boat surveyed ... buy the boat ... have the exterior painted ... and possibly a few other things that haven't come to mind as I write this   : )

So ... reality is this boat is never going to be mine ... damn like it though.