Tuesday 27th June Ref: 2017/12b
It had been showering off and on and looked as if it might stop but then it started drizzling and that developed into heavy rain that lasted for the rest of the day. We therefore decided to cast off and join the convoy of three yachts that were massing for the first convoy of the day; starting just where we were moored at Pegasus Bridge at 10.10am.
I headed for the opening bridge, reckoning that we had been moored and waiting so they would not mind me leading the convoy. One large yacht seemed to think otherwise and, as I held back waiting for the others to make it a tight fleet for the bridges, he stormed ahead at 6 Knots (despite the publicised speed for the Orme Canal convoys being 5) and I tried signalling and addressing him on my loud hailer but he was arguing and not taking the point. It did him absolutely no good at all, as I still held back until the other two yachts joined me and he had to wait at the next bridge as the bridge-keeper was always going to wait for the yachts to be together before letting us through! After that, he slowed down and tried to get me close to him but I slowed too until I was in touch with the other two and he learnt his lesson and held back. Once we were through the town bridge into the Caen Basin, he quickly moored and shot off no doubt from embarrassment and I chatted to the other two skippers.
Despite the rain, we connected up our water hose and washed and rinsed Lady Martina and then started topping up the water tank but Kathleen noticed a funny noise behind the microwave and I saw the aft bilge pump running far too often so our next saga began. I first stripped the saloon of all of our furnishing and delved into the area close to my port shaft to look at the stern gland. It was dripping regularly but nothing much more than it had been and so that was not the cause. I did try tightening it but could not move the large nuts anyway.
It then became obvious that there was a leak from our pressurised domestic water system behind the galley cupboards and this needed the whole saloon contents to be changed so that I could get to the starboard side. First, I dismantled the cupboard under the hob and this took a while but at least Broom build their boats so that access exists, however difficult. Once we got behind there, we could see the problem leak and it was in the pressurised cold water system but at a junction behind the microwave! I had to remove the stairs alongside it and then eventually found out how this appliance was secured in and, by managing to remove the four screws securing the two special blocks at the top, I could free the microwave but then came the next problem. The mains supply cable was not long enough to enable it to be withdrawn from the cabinet and so the next thing was to lengthen it! With two 3-way terminal blocks safely housed in two plastic boxes, I completed that surgery and now the connected microwave could sit on the kitchen work surface. Phew!!
I next removed the back of the cupboard housing the microwave and its base and could then properly access a group of three ‘L’-shaped pipe unions, the middle one of which leaked a lot under pressure. I removed the offending fitting and was disappointed to find that the harbourmaster did not arrive to open his office at the time of 14.30pm, stated on his door, because I wanted to know where the nearest chandler or plumber was for I had planned to buy replacement unions to a much higher design or quality.
When he did appear later, he was of no assistance at all, saying that the nearest were at Ouistrehem and he knew even less English than I knew French. I decided to refit the offending union but to make a far better job of it this time and that I eventually did, the resulting job holding for the rest of the day at least. Kathleen had a shower and put the washing machine on to give it a good check and the system seemed to have settled down again.
Temp 21>24 deg C, RH 80>74%, Pressure 1005 mb steady, rain, good viz, smooth and little wind inland