I awoke early considering how I was going to lift the old batteries out of the wooden battery tray, which is tucked right under the rear deck The 135AH batteries are as big and as heavy as marine batteries are likely to get and having lifted the four new batteries on board yesterday I knew it was going to be a struggle, but whilst lying in bed I devised a simple and hopefully effective plan.
The sun was shining and straight after breakfast I got stuck in. The easy part was removing the lid to the battery tray, un-strapping and disconnecting the old batteries, firstly making notes to ensure I knew which cables connected to which battery. As I thought, because there was only about twelve inches of space above the batteries it was impossible for me to lift them over the six inch deep surround of the battery tray, but by inserting the ball end of my boat hook through one of the batteries carrying handle and with Jacquie bearing down gently on the other end from the towpath, the front end of one of the battery rose above the tray edge allowing me to pull it towards me and lift it out on to the bank. The other three followed just as easily and the four new ones were lowered into place without problem and quickly reconnected and strapped down. I love it when a plan comes together.
We stayed where we were for the Williams sister, Wimbledon final and then set off for the last couple of miles back to our permanent mooring at Wigrams Turn Marina at Napton Our intention is to stay marina based whilst all the hire cruisers are out and about during the summer school holidays, but we do have several friends coming to stay and whilst they are on board we will be out cruising locally, and hopefully I will have something worth blogging about, until then I will sign off.
What a fantastic time it has been, we started on the 14th of April almost three months ago. Nearly 40 friend/relatives have visited us in that period, some just for the evening, others much longer, but every visit has been hugely enjoyable for us, if not for our guests. The highlight of the trip has to have been traveling down the tidal Thames, from Teddington to Limehouse and through it all the weather has been wonderful, with just enough rain to spice things up, now we just need to decide which direction we head off to in the Autumn.
Keep watching this space!!!!