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Mike Fairclough
Oundle, Peterborough
Viking 26, narrow beam, centre cockpit 'Chardonnay'

I have recently bought Chardonnay from Oundle Marina, that had been neglected for a while but in river worthy condition. New to boating ,possibly a bit too ambitious at 71 years, but I do hope to have some fun in the spring. The Marina told me the cabin door had been removed by the owner for a re-paint, sadly the owner told me he had scrapped the door because someone had broken into the boat and it was beyond repair. A shower had been fitted next to the galley and it has taken me some time to fit an oak door hinged in the centre and a matching panel of oak to cover the the old door which i presume went from the bridge to a toilet
Talking of toilets now that was a surprise for me , sat in the spartan shower was a chemical loo. No it could not be!! heavy yes!! full yes!!,had they used elsan fluid it may not have been so bad. Emptied and power washed it now sits in my garage waiting for the spring. There were many conversations about posting the contents back to the previous owner !.
A new water heater had been fitted the previous year but somehow was not connected which could have been nasty had the gas been turned on to make a cuppa. I bought some gas pipe and hailed a passing worker from Fairline boats who kindly came with his pipe bender and during his lunch hour magically bent the pipe around and up leaving me only with the job of wiping the joints with sealant and securing the connections. After testing the joints bingo the heater struck up and supplied hot water.

I will find time to take some more pictures before the winters work begins.

It is powered by a Honda 9.9 that seems to start and run ok , but wonder wether that is sufficient power.

I will forget the guy who owned it previously ,and the guy who said to me ,"you smile twice when you have a boat" "once when you buy it,and once when you sell it"

Mike f