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Working Boats in England Today - Feature:
New Boat On Sand Traffic - The first sand run for 125 year old BCN Joey boat No 108
On Friday 22nd August a 'new' boat started work on the Denham to West Drayton aggregate traffic. The 1883 Birmingham Joey boat BCN No 108 carried its first load of 25.59 tonnes of sharp sand, towed by motor ARUNDEL. The pair of boats loaded from the conveyor at Lea Pit and delivered to the newly rebuilt unloading wharf at Hanson's West Drayton depot.
The new boat dates back 125 years to 1883, and has a varied life, and length. Shortened by 15 feet, it worked as a maintenance craft on the Grand Union, and was restored at that length by Eva and Piers Bull. In 2007, Pete Boyce acquired it to replace BETELGEUSE on the sand traffic, as a more suitable boat for the short haul daytime work. No 108 was taken to Lyons Boatyard in Warstock and lengthened to its original 71 feet. This was done by adding three more plates each side to match the original riveted iron construction, with replica knees being constructed and hot rivets used to join the plates. Lyons Yard provided labour and fabrication skills, and Ian Kemp advised and managed the riveting. Below the waterline, welded steel footings and bottom plates matched those added in BWB days. The hold was reinforced with a steel angle 'hopper' edge, so that the hold would be unobstructed for unloading by grab. A new rudder and a wooden lining were made by Pete Boyce. The lining provides a clean square space for the grab to operate in. This has speeded up unloading time by half an hour by greatly reducing shoveling of the residual sand. The boat also has a large enclosed foredeck with flush deck, which balances the buoyancy of the enlarged cabin area and provides a safer platform than the fore end of a traditional butty.
Article courtesy of Instrument Software Development Raymarine UK Ltd.
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