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It was at this time our troubles

started to manifest themselves. First the engine refused to start. It turned out to be a slightly loose cable on the starter. Then there was a decreasing clicking sound as neutral was selected. Finally we returned from Doncaster market only to discover the mains inverter socket burnt out. No circuit breakers had tripped so it was assumed a poor connection had been the cause. As the battery charger was still working it was decided to leave things for the time being. However, the clicking was another thing that could not be so easily identified or solved. Not wanting to risk a second tidal river our plans to visit York and Ripon were cancelled and it was decided to return home and solve the problem. As we came through Thorne lock

on our return, another boater suggested a diagnostic check at Thorne Boat Services. This sound advice was followed. The initial answer was that the rubber mountings on the engine were poor leading to alignment distortion. One rubber mounting was completely shot due to diesel contamination. Now as there was no agency back at the DMBC area known to be as reliable as the Thorne services it was decided to engage them to solve the problem. Here time was going to be a problem, holidays and staff availability would take quite a toll on the eventual solution. Thus a local ex RAF friend was recruited to reunite crew and the car back at the Club. Pertama was then left to be repaired.

Sadly new mounting feet did not

solve the clicking problem and the gearbox had to be removed. This revealed the thrust plate in a very poor way. Pertama is fitted with a Centraflex and although these can be run with the rubbers perished it is certainly not advisable, so more time was spent waiting for this item to be replaced. Finally after 5 weeks we returned to the boat. The noise was fixed and she ran smoothly. However, now the electrics problem returned with a vengeance. It turned out to be the battery management system. This particular system had been fitted when Pertama had been built some 13 years ago and although it had been splendid, the originator had been out of business for quite some time and spares unavailable. So it was time to ‘bite on the bullet’ and have a new Adverc fitted. This new system worked a treat and with a little rewiring, the original meter was adapted to deliver the readings from the Adverc, this did save £200 off the bill and as Mr. Tesco says ‘every little helps’ Finally we said farewell to Thorne

Boat Services and headed back to Keadby and the Trent. A very early departure from the lock saw us stop off at Gainsborough, again for the news paper. Then moor up outside Torksey for an afternoon nap. Or so we thought! Tap! Tap! tap! On the side of the

boat. B******s! what the *??* ! Out side on the pontoon we were given a splendid DMBC greeting and a brew up quickly organised.

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