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Paula
Paula

Posted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 8:41am

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

Hello everyone, myself and my partner have seen a lovely narrowboat and fallen in love with it but we have noticed it is leaning on one side. We realise that all the furniture etc is on the side that its leaning towards but have looked about and have not seen any other boats leaning quite as much as this one. Do you think there is a problem with this and if so can it be rectified?

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 8:54am

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

It might have a toilet holding tank on the low side that needs pumping out. There is less of a chance that it has a fuel or water tank on one side. It may also have water in the cabin bilge that has run to the low side. If so pumping it out may rectify the problem. Once you have eliminated those things you woudl need to either remove ballast from the low side or add it to the high side. This can be difficult because usually the floor is fitted first and then the bulkheads and furniture are fitted on top so to gain access you may have to cut large traps in the floor. There should already be a trap somewhere close to the back of the cabin area but if it is on the high side you may not see any water so you woudl have to force the boat to heel the other way (a few hefty bodies on the high side may work). You may also find access to the bilge and ballast from under the bed(s) that is/are probably on the low side. It might also be possible to place steel ballast on the swim plate beside the engine on the high side but that will alter the fore-aft trim of the boat that in turn alter the boat's pivot point when turning. Please note that some boats have an all in one bilge and if so any water would be seen in the engine bay. Tony Brooks

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Mon Jun 01, 2015 3:33pm

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

PS. If it is water in the bilge you really need to find out how it got there. It cloud be condensation, leaking domestic plumbing, leaking windows, or even a leaking hull. TB

Paula
Paula

Posted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:13am

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

Thank you for your answers, the boat hasn't been used so it as far as I know has no water on board, if the water tank was full do you think it would make a difference and can I rely on the tank being full to help with the leaning?

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:27am

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

The vast majority of narrowboats have their water tanks across the front of the boat so being full or empty only affects the fore-aft trim, not any list (lean). Unless you have been told there is no water on board the fact that the boat has been out of use in no way indicates no water. The lack of use and thus probably care makes water in the bilge more likely. Fuel tanks are usually, but not always, right across the back of the boat so this also normally only alters the fore-aft trim.

Paula
Paula

Posted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:34am

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

Thank you Tony, that answer was straight to the point which is exactly what I need. So in your expert opinion when we go back to look at the boat again what are the main questions we have to ask? Sorry that we sound so inadequate but the more we ask the more we learn.

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 11:27am

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

Please do not worry about asking questions here however stupid you may feel they are. If you need answers they are far from stupid. I fear it is not so much about questions to ask the vendor because you have no way of telling if the reply is any sort of a lie or not. It is far more about doing a very close inspection to find out things for yourself. Certainly insist that you are shown the trapdoor in the floor that allows you to inspect the cabin bilge for water OR the hole(s) that connect the cabin bilge to the engine bilge. However if the boat does have an all in one bilge the bilge pump should remove almost all the any water that may have collected. Look for dark stains in the internal woodwork below windows that may indicate water leaks. Insist that you see the engine started form cold and feel it first to make sure it is still cold. Make sure it goes into ahead and astern gear. Once you are as sure as you can be please get a survey done but NOT by a surveyor recommended by the vendor. Tell him about any special things you want checked in writing - like the list. This will probably cost many hundred pounds but that is cheap when compared with paying for extensive hull repairs. If you know any experienced boaters you trust ask them to look over the boat with you. Sorry I can't help more. I have no idea about who built the boat or its age. TB

Paula
Paula

Posted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 2:49pm

Post Subject: Narrowboat leaning

Again thank you Tony for being so understanding, unfortunately for you I will be in touch and definitely let you know how it goes. Look forward to chatting again Paula.

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