After coming off dock and glorious trip back up the Marple flight and a night in the little pub in Marple with good friends :-) I decided it was time to remove the top! One eve chopping through the uprights and removing all internals, the next morning I ran into it with a forklift and lifted the cabin forward of the engine room. Unfortunatly it didnt come straight off, but instead broke its back and fell back into the boat... I spent the next week removing the detritus of wood and insulation!
So with the hull steel work ok and the cabin and front bulkhead gone, I now wanted to go boating... but before I set off, I took the oppertunity to load Bargus for the first time in nearly 50 years with a cargo in the hold, 7 tons of pre bagged coal hand loaded by myself... a monentus occation :-) she now sits level (ish) is a dream to steer and boat (even if I am currently on a shallow canal) and I plan to visit a couple of fesitivals this year advertising the Bollington Wharf, Nb Alton and Four Counties Fuels... as well as having alot of fun boating a loaded boat around the system... but while underway, im still doing more maintenance, painting the inside of the counter, hold and starting to build up the proper engine room with its lower bulkhead, engine beds and fuel tanks. As one last job before leaving the wharf I made a new tiller pin :-)
with Bargus being out and about little maintenace can be done, but while havinng a short stay at Yarwoods on the river weaver she got alittle love and attention, the reduction box and engine got oil changes and the exhaust system re-routed to come out where it should... some say this is a daft thing, but I want to make the operator experiance as right as possible so it feels right and so gives greater enjoyment! ...oviously the only way to truely acheiev this would be to put the national in the correct place and rebuild the cabin properly with a stove at the steers feet :-) ...one day, one day! Oh, and the new gunwales are starting to look like gunwales!