Sunday 5 June 2016

Out at last

We actually got out of the marina yesterday, but I wanted to write about Steve giving up smoking! We  cruised to Radford Bank, and then came on to Penkridge today in the sunshine. Hardly any traffic around, so we were surprised to find a queue at Deptmore Lock.

We were joined from behind by a family of Viking hirers, who helped us up.

In Acton Trussell the canal-side gardens, as ever, were in fine fettle.

We also found ourselves queueing at succeeding locks, not least at Longford, where one paddle was broken and the lock took an age to fill. But then it was just a short way to Penkridge, and we decided to tie up on the run in, even though the pound was down by about a foot.

We've never moored up here before, but we had an ulterior motive. The final of the French Open had already started, and it looked as though there would be good TV reception here! So we settled down and, as I write, Andy Murray has just lost. Perhaps we should have gone on to our normal spot above Filance Lock!

This being the second day of our trip, the real test of Erin Mae's 12 volt revolution has started. I'm happy to report that, overnight, the SmartGauge registered 88% for the batteries' state-of-charge, even though we watched a 90 minute episode of Hinterland last night. With two and a half hours cruising and the sunshine, the batteries are fully charged again, and the solar panel is doing what it should. It's all about balancing input and output, supply and consumption. So far I'm very happy.


  1. Our batteries are keeping so well charged that I had to run the engine today - not for charging but for hot water! The weather was too warm to fire up the Webasto.

    1. Why did the weather stop you running the Webasto? I ran ours for a morning shower – just made sure the radiators were turned off.

  2. I have heard that a diesel heater "short cycles" - leading to sooted-up burner - if there isn't at least one radiator turned on. I ran the engine for half an hour but water still didn't heat up enough. No such problem today.