Category Archives: SideNotes

Other stuff that happened during the build

A bit of a blow to progress!

Well two bits of good news, and two less positive points, for this entry….

Positive #1 – She’s in her berth at on Windermere

Ready for the tow to Windermere, she makes quite a long train – but now has her “SY” prefix being a real Steam Yacht!

So, having dispensed with the medical matters (see below), we set about trying to complete the list of 60+ jobs that needed to be done before we could put her back in the water (some of which were discussed here…. Continue reading

Sails, Cabin, Boiler & Gally – February ’20 update

Just a note to record the things we have been doing over the last month or so.

Most importantly we have secured a berth at Ferry Nab on Winderemere, so Befur will be exploring new waters this year. So, as always, the cosh is upon us, with the berth being available from the 1st April (yes, we know, not an auspicious date!).

The work has divided into annual maintenance, finishing/installing the sailing rig and finishing the fit-out of the galley – and sundry diversions. Continue reading

Heggerscales Steam Yacht Club Opens!

Well we made it! Befur is delivered to our New home in Heggerscales in Cumbria – a long slow 10hour overnight tow on Sunday got us here intact….

So the next job is to fit out the workshop, and then build some boilers!

Here is Befur ready for her journey – the Landy performed perfectly…..

Befur ready to head North

(ps – the unfinished looking paintwork is ready for its antifouling, which can only be applied 2-weeks before launch)

Just for your interest – an Electric thing…

The video below is not even steam it’s a 1930s Synchronous Electric motor producing 350HP from a 2,400 volt supply….

There is something I have never seen before in here: Watch the video first, and see if you can understand what is happening – I didn’t get it at first…. Explanation is below…

Continue reading

Winged Friends, staging and tooling!

The Robins' Nest - is that the correct punctuation (maybe nest is a verb and so it's "The Robins Nest!"!

The Robins’ Nest – is that the correct punctuation (maybe nest is a verb and so it’s “The Robins Nest!”!

Well,  for the 2nd year (and despite my presence) the Robins have decided to nest in the air-hose reel… Well at least this time I figured this out… last time they got “spin-dryered” when I ran the hose out. At least they were only nest building (no eggs or chicks). Today there was definite “cheeping” and a lot of to-ing and fro-ing with worms and insects.

Woodworking, Staging and Tools

Continue reading

A Spring Clean of the Blog…

I have just reorganized the content of the blog to separate the hull build from the power-plant, and also adopted a new theme, with continuous scrolling…

I’m not really sure if this is an improvement….

Please feel free to let me know if this arrangement works for you all (or not!)


A bit of an upgrade

Malcolm’s a happy boy!

Much as I love the Adcock and Shipley milling machine that Andy Murdock found for me in a Car Park in Runcorn in the early 80’s, and despite the sterling service it has provided with the Bridgeport head I fitted, I had yearned after a machine with a bit more capacity for a long time, and with the “pending boiler” build, I decided the time had come to find its replacement….

I had intended to buy a Bridgeport “series 1” mill – and a bit of research demonstrated that you could buy “a bit of a nail” for about £1500, a passable example for £2500, a nice refurbished one for £7,500 or a new one for about £15,000!

After a lot of searching, and trawling ebay and looking at the cost of transport, I bit the bullet – sold the old mill on Ebay and went (with supporting friend) to look at few replacement machines … including at a dealer (BW Machines) in Leicester….

Well as with all “best laid plans” on arrival I did not much like the one I went to see, did not have enough funds to buy the ones I fancied, but fell across a ’72 Italian turret mill by Rambaudi… It took a while to convince myself I could move and install the thing (1.5tonnes), but it was in good condition and was obviously a very high quality machine, so the deal was struck…

So here’s a two pics of it arriving and of it almost in place – now I just need to fit a DRO, swap all my tooling to 40INT and resume work (currently on the auxiliary drive assembly for pumps and alternator) – it is BIG!

A hasty snap of delivery in progress

A hasty snap of delivery in progress

Rambaudi V3 in situ

Rambaudi V3 in situ

Befur has a Trailer!

(editor’s update: This trailer was eventually scrapped and a new aluminium one purchased from Gecko Trailers – see The Final Push to the North )

Thank goodness for eBay… (and Graham Wright)… Graham managed to spot this gem on ebay, it’s about 6ft too short,  in need of some paint, somewhat bent from abuse, but it was only 4 miles away, cheap, and nothing a welding torch can’t fix – happy mode:on!

We moved!

Well the deed is done, Medstead Engineering has relocated to its beautiful new 1,000sq ft home…. and the Ducketts to a new flat … sadly both locations are currently stuffed with boxes and spare furniture, so look somewhat chaotic, but progress will be made 🙂

Cluttered, but home!

Cluttered, but home!

John (semi-son-in-law) laid in the 3-phase, all the machinery arrived, almost all the internal building is done, the new roof is keeping out the weather… any minute now we will get back to boat, boiler and engine building!