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Grantham Canal - bits of rusty metal and other interesting stuff.

Discussion in 'Everything Else Heritage' started by baldbof, Oct 5, 2015.

  1. staffordian

    staffordian Well-Known Member

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    Anyone with a passing interest in canals could do worse than watching some of his videos.

    He was a BBC local reporter who gave it all up to live and cruise on the canals. His videos are superbly produced and he has quite a wry sense of humour IMHO.

    The channel is caled Cruising The Cut.
     
  2. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    The team are back on the lock after restrictions were lifted and things are moving ahead. The lock gates have been delivered having sat at C&RT's workshop at Stanley Ferry since the start of the lockdown.

    Anyway, they are here, shame that we are still waiting for two gate anchor blocks which are holding up the gates' fitment - not acceptable really, the blocks are a year overdue!! When we do the next pair of locks, that company will not be asked to tender.

    Damn driver didn't bring the assembly instructions. :Facepalm:


    IMG_2670.JPG

    IMG_2673.JPG

    IMG_2671.JPG
     
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  3. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    It could be worse, the instructions may have been in Chinese or some eastern variant of English! :D
    Anyway good to see you get going again.
     
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  4. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    Did he even remember to bring the allen key? :) :) :)

    Good to see work restarting

    Keith
     
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  5. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Nope , "You only asked for the gates". ;)

    The fitters are on site next week but will only be able to fit the lower gates due to the upper anchor stones not yet being delivered. The supplying company (middle man, not a quarry) has offered every excuse under the sun for non-delivery. One thing they can't blame is the COVID lock-down - the stones should have been here this time last year. Damn infuriating - this is what happens when C&RT insist in using one of their "preferred suppliers" - other companies not on their list had the product available with firm delivery dates. I think it's a hark back to the bureaucratic days of British Waterways which transferred into the new organisation (different name, same people) - we encountered this obstructiveness obstinacy at Lock 15 and it took C&RT's CEO to get things moving.
     
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  6. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Lots of little jobs going on at various parts of the site - the gate fitters have arrived and started detailed measuring up and laying out - the lower quoins are due to be lifted into place on Thursday after which our guys have a few days to cut channels into the lower anchor stones to accommodate the gate anchors, - levels are being checked prior to more landscaping, storage containers being sorted prior to completion of this phase and starting the next at Lock 13. Still no sign of the upper gate anchor stones.!!

    Meanwhile, pointing continues on the lower approach wing walls. The wall was rebuilt by one volunteer who is a dab hand at dry stone walling - he's done a cracking job. Not my photo as current rules restrict the number of volunteers allowed on site.

    wing wall.png
     
  7. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Preliminary work on fitting the gates got underway today. The gates will be lifted out again to allow fettling before they are permanently fixed in place.

    This selection of photos is courtesy of one of our volunteers, Bob Terry.

    The pivot pin on the base of a gate. This fits into a cup let into the floor of the lock chamber - we are using what we believe are the original cups from when the lock was first built between 1794 and 1797.

    gate hinge.png

    The first gate being lifted into place.

    gate lift 1.png

    The view from the lower dam of the gate been lifted into place.
    gate lift 2.png

    The lower gates being test fitted. They will be lifted out again to allow more detailed work in that area.

    gate test fit.png
     
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  8. Breva

    Breva Part of the furniture

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    We've been reclaiming some bricks from a disused station near Milton Keynes. Part of the platform is lined with stone blocks (rather than slabs) and there are 100 of them. They measure 50cm x 25cm x 25cm.

    I wonder if they would be of interest to a canal preservation society, or anyone else? There are also 3 x 150cm long stone slabs, which together cover a rodding tunnel.

    I'm not the owner of the site, but can put someone in touch. Pm me if interested. (@baldbof?)

    (please don't guess in public which station, as we don't want people to sniff around until we have finished what we are doing)

    A picture of a stone block is here:

    IMG_20200815_102925999.jpg
     
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  9. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    @Breva,

    I have sent you a PM.
     
  10. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Just a quick up-date on progress at Lock 14.

    After the lower gates had been craned into position, it was noticed that the off-side gate was sitting lower than the other gate. It was lifted out, some packing was placed under the pivot cup and the gate re-hung. It sank again so it was lifted out again and the pivot cup removed for further investigation. It was discovered that the sub-surface had disintegrated - for want of a better word - so the decision was made to dig out the pivot cup's base, re-fill with reinforced concrete and re-sit the pivot cup on the new base.

    The excavated base for the pivot cup - the re-bar is in position awaiting the concrete. The gate quoin is at the lower left of the photo.

    sunken gate pot.png

    The fix appears to have been successful as the gates are back in position.

    lower mitre.png

    Work is now proceeding on the upper gates and it is hoped to re-water the lock toward the end of this month. Bearing in mind that the teams have lost a few months due to lock-down and waited over a year for the gate anchor stones, to completely rebuild the lock in just on two years is quite a feat - Lock 15 took three years.

    For all those of you who have had to endure your railway being in lock-down, I'll wager you've had plenty of weed growth along your tracks. If it's any consolation, the canal hasn't escaped the best efforts of Mother Nature in what has been perfect conditions for weed growth. Here's a typical view of the canal taken a couple of days ago.

    I could say our weeds are bigger than yours...but I won't! ;) We're on the weed clearing case and hopefully with the growing season all but finished and we can make in-roads into clearing the waterway for our work boats.

    Bridge 64 weeds.png

    Note: These are not my photos - thanks to Jim F and Philip R for providing them.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
  11. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    I guess there aren't many hand weeding volunteers helping! :D:D
     
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  12. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Since this little baby arrived our volunteers can keep their hands clean and no close encounters with nasties.

    It's our equivalent of a weed-killing train - hand-pulling is so passé. :D:D


    otter.png
     
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  13. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    More weed clearing on the summit pound yesterday.

    Compare the photo at post #330 above with how this stretch now appears after yesterday's effort..

    bridge 64.png

    Not my photo
     
  14. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    A video made by Sea Lane Media of the lower gates being fitted at Lock 14. Note the social distancing. ;)


     
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  15. DismalChips

    DismalChips Member

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    Excellent video, that. Really gives you a sense of the project as a whole.

    Not saying anything I haven't said before, but I find this thread absolutely fascinating. It's genuinely enlightening to see the detail of how things work in an area you have limited experience of.

    (my experience being limited to taking my former father-in-law's barge through a lock and doing about as good a job of it as you would expect from someone who'd never had control of a barge or a lock in his life)
     
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  16. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Thank you for the kind comments. I'm quite tickled by your "limited experience"comment. I my case, 'limited' = 'zero'. I'd never laid a brick in me life until I joined this lot and to look at some of my efforts, it shows. Fortunately most of them will be under water once the lock is filled.

    I managed a visit to the site yesterday - I'm currently indisposed with a hurty back so I can't lift anything and am about as much use as a chocolate fireguard - C&RT's man on site said the aim is to re-water the lock sometime in the first couple of weeks of October. So, no pressure on our team then!
     
  17. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Work is drawing to a close at Lock 14 as various outstanding jobs get completed.

    Photos provided by another GCS volunteer.

    The upper gates are now installed.

    l14 upper gates.png

    The lower mooring wharf with the bollards installed and weeds removed from the channel. Just need some water and a boat to complete the picture.

    l14 lower wharf.png

    You can always tell when things are nearly completed when the worksite is landscaped with topsoil.

    l14 landscape.png

    It is anticipated that the lock will be re-watered in October. I hope to be there!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
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  18. Ploughman

    Ploughman Well-Known Member

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  19. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Lock 13 (just a repair of both walls) and Lock 12 (partial rebuild of one wall and repair of t'other) are on the horizon but we've got other stuff to do before we start again on the locks - at least we are not looking at total rebuilds this time. In the next couple of months we'll be rebuilding the slipway at our Woolsthorpe depot so we can get our boats out of the water and save on crane hire charges, then there's the continuing task of clearing the four miles upstream of Woolsthorpe which has suffered from the effects of high winds and the lockdown.

    There are several large fallen trees to remove when we can get to them after the summer's weed growth has been removed from the cut. The weed is that thick it stops the boats. There's also plans to sort out various leaking culverts which are severely reducing the amount of water in the canal further along the Vale of Belvoir plus there's a long dry section near Cropwell Bishop that needs attention (that's caused by the gypsum reacting against the puddling clay).

    We are in the process of fund-raising and compiling a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund to assist with the restoration of Locks 12 & 13 - we were delayed with the submission of the bid due to being given totally mis-leading information about the timing of the submission.
     
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  20. baldbof

    baldbof Part of the furniture Friend

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    Lock 14 waiting for the final scaffolding to be removed then the water can return.

    L14 waiting.png

    Thanks to Bob T for the photo.
     

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