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Monday, 23 September 2013

Into Dry Dock.

We were up a little early to get into the Portland Marina Arm ready for the dry dock.

The entrance to the Peak Forest Canal under the lovely bridge.

We got into the arm at about 0830 to find that they don't open until 0900. Then it sems they had to shuffle a load of boats about and I had to come in stern first anyway. So back out to await the sorting out.

Portland Marina Arm. The arm used to extend further but had been truncated and then the last bit has been reinstated as a dry dock. One side of the dock was the original wharf wall. The water drains out down into the River Goyt I assume and is not pumped out. Therefore the slope is towards the inboard end and the stern was to be down there. The dock drains very quickly and we were soon on the trestles and they were blasting out the mud from the bottom.

Two bent propeller blades clearly seen. It was soon taken off the shaft and sent off for straightening and balancing.

The condition of the blacking was very poor. The boat was completed in October 2011 so is only two years from new. However it sat in a marina for over a year before we bought her. The blacking hasn't adhered at all well with the hull and I suspect that it was blacked when it was too cold and the hull was sweating, or it was wet. I also wonder if the fact that it was sat in a marina with no galvanic insulator has assisted the breakdown and piting of the metal.

Before and after pressure washing.

No fire just the mist from the pressure washer. The anodes are hardly wasted at all.

I had decided to paint the upper hull with blacking a while ago and hadn't been able to do it due to moving and the moorings being too high. I have started to rub down the green ready to cut in with Comastic bitumen paint to make it easier and cheaper to keep the  hull painted. I hope to get the cutting in all done before I go home and then roll in the rest if I have time. If no time I can then do the bulk of the work with a roller from the side with her floating.

Whist the hull was drying we went for a walk into Ashton. It is a strange place that has obviously been well to do, with some nice buildings, but the centre of commerce seems to have moved a couple of times and there are areas that have been left floundering. There is a great indoor and outdoor market. It was pretty good on Monday but I assume loads better during the week and Saturday.

This Lion and key was over a Barclays Bank. I don't think this was ever a symbol for them so maybe at one time it was a pub, the 'Lion and Key'. We went past another pub that had beautiful blue tile work on the facade called the Angel Hotel. It was full at 1400 on a Monday and there was some terrible karaoke emanating from the doors.

We then walked to the nearest station that goes direct to Manchester Piccadilly, which was at Guide Bridge. Ashton station trains got to Manchester Victoria. It was a little walk down the tow path and then a very overgrown and litter strewn footpath but it is less than 30 mins away. I will go there tomorrow to catch the train as I am going home for a dental appointment and to see my Mum before she goes off to visit a brother in France. Guide bridge is apparently named after a bridge over the Ashton Canal, but I'm not sure why it was a guide bridge.

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