Now Summer is in full swing and the backlog of our working lives has been cleared, we have turned our attention once again to the boat. We are still using water from canisters, so the first task on the list is to remove the pressure tank, followed by the removal of the colossal water tank, as the system no longer works. Both were very old, rusty and caked in limescale. In addition the tank held approximately 1 tonne of water, and with only two of us living on the boat Martin was not sure that the water changes would be frequent enough to keep it fresh.
The pressure tank is big and heavy. You can buy much smaller ones these days which run with small pumps. The small space also made it difficult to get out, but after juggling with it Martin managed to get it out by himself.
The next job was to remove the large rusty water tank.
This was definitely a job for more than one person. The tank measured 7ft by 4ft, with depth of about 16 inches, made of thick metal, and was sat firmly in the hull.There was no way that it would come out in one piece, first, because there wasn’t the room to get it out without sawing through some of the cross joists (we think the tank was put in and then the wooden struts built around it), and secondly because it was just too heavy. So the first part of the job was to saw the tank into two manageable pieces. This was no mean feat with the steel being so thick. However, after a lot of hard work with the grinder, Martin managed to get the better of the tank, and we were left with two pieces that then needed to be lifted from the hull and placed on the deck in the stern.
The smaller piece, Martin managed by himself, by wedging it underneath to lift it, and then manoeuvring it end on end up on to the stern. Once that had been done we motored the barge round to the main marina.
With the help of two friends, the last (and larger part) was lifted out on to the stern and then moved on to the bank. The limescale inside covered the full surface of the bottom of the tank and was about 1 inch thick! It came off in large slabs, some of which had to be broken up. It had obviously been there for some time.
With the space cleared we could now get on with installing a new tank, and more importantly give ourselves running water.