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Monday, 8 July 2013

Battery Hell.

We caught the 0923 train from Appley Bridge to Wigan as Helen was going home for a while. The guys on 'Rock 'n' Roll left just before us to beat the heat of the day. I hope they have a great time in Liverpool. There seems to be a few all going down the Link on Friday with them. The station isn't manned and there isn't a ticket machine. Helen was going onward from Wigan but I was coming back later. The ticket was £2-30 return, bought from the man at the ticket barrier. Appley Bridge station seemed to be well used and there are plenty of trains too. The Southport train goes into Wigan Wallgate. Not far away is Wigan North Western which is actually on the West Coast Main line so the town is well supplied with routes. After waving Helen off on her train to Manchester and thence to Hull I went in search of a few DIY bits. I was home again by 1230.

After waiting for the sun to go over a little I dived down the engine hole. I had got a fixing T plate for about 80p that I have cut down and it fits the battery caps very well. I was not looking forward to it, but a man has got to do what a man's got to do! There is precious little room round the engine and the batteries are stowed in an even more difficult place. Previously I had only managed to get a few of the cell caps of the most easily accessible battery. This time, after lots of cursing and contortions, I managed to get all but 3 off the starter battery. My manufactured tool worked well after cropping the corners off with a junior hacksaw and it then fitted into the slot perfectly. I had to slack of the connection on one post to move the wire to enable me to get to the cap and I also found that one of the connections on a post was extremely loose. Luckily I had a spanner that fitted. I tried to move the five batteries further out into the open as the tray they sit on has a gap. I did get them moved a bit but a wire came tight so wasn't able to get it into the prime spot. The three cell caps that I couldn't get at were under several wires that I couldn't get at to move. I checked the liquid levels and topped up a little. The specific gratuities seemed to be good so hopefully they will last a while yet.

Whist down there I also filled up the stern glad greaser and swept out the deck board guttering and did a quick check round everywhere. At the end of it all I was cream crackered but would like to think that it was the heat and not the fact that I feel like I have been working in a Cirque du soleil.  After a rest I made up some Elder flower cordial from blooms that I had picked on the way back to the boat. With this heat the first batch we made will soon be gone so I thought I would get some more made before the blooms go over. After tea I went fishing with my magnet to see if there was anything I could find. Unfortunately there wasn't anything to be found tonight. Sorry there are no pictures tonight as I took the camera but there was no battery in it!


  1. Hi Tony - I’d love to have the recipe for elderflower cordial please? We heard yesterday that swing bridge 9 has a major fault and the convoy into L’pool today has been cancelled. We’ve still got to be there on Friday morning though in the hope that it’s been fixed! best wishes Carol and George.

  2. Hi Carol,

    Elder Flower Cordial

    20 - 25 elder flower heads
    2 lemons
    1 teaspoon citric acid
    13/4 pints boiling water
    31/2 lb of sugar

    Grate the zest off the lemons in to a big enough bowl for the ingredients. Squeeze the lemons into the bowl and then place remains off lemon in too. Add the sugar and citric acid. Stir in the boiling water and then put in the flower heads and continue to stir until all sugar is dissolved. Cover and then stir again every now and then for the next five days. Then strain and put into well cleaned and sterilised bottles. I hope you enjoy it before the flowers die off.

    Cheers, Tony.