Vlog 201: High and Dry

After coming back down the Macclesfield canal (which I didn’t film, as it was exactly the same as going up as shown in prior vlogs, albeit in the other direction), I turned south and retraced my path along the Trent & Mersey until I got to Stone, Staffordshire. There I’d booked the boat into a dry dock for re-blacking. This video shows that process.

Location: https://goo.gl/maps/vJZEkKaZNrS2rBzZ6
Filmed in the last week of October, 2019
My previous blacking video can be watched here: “Back to Black”
If you’re interested in two-pack epoxy blacking, Kath & Anna had theirs done like this; see their video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwZGXZwn-nc

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  1. David , I’ve been watching ever since your first episode. I just finished episode # 201. I watch YouTube on my big tv , so I just brush off commenting , but I’m on my phone to tell you after finishing the last episode , up popops the very first episode . So we’re going to start the adventure all over again . Being medically retired from truck driving , a lot of hours are spent on YouTube . Your Vlogs have givin me great relaxing enjoyment . Keep up the vlogs , I’ll be watching . From a cousin from across the pond , Ward , Arkansas , USA .

  2. Fantastic reply David. I suspect that the businesses which do the blacking are able to buy the bitumen paint at a wholesale price and in bulk, so this is likely where most of their profit is made. By the time one would pay for the haul out , paint and shed space, I suspect you wouldn’t save all that much doing it yourself. One other question I had . . . I’ve seen a few people who have also added anodes to the middle of their boats, claiming this cuts down on corrosion in the center of the boat. Any thoughts on this?

    • Yes, mine has anodes on the middle, they were added when it was blacked at Yelvertoft two years ago. Anodes only have a short range of effectiveness to having them in the middle, if they can be slimline so as not to add width and cause an obstruction in tight locks etc, is a good idea.

  3. Thanks for another well crafted vlog. I’ve forgotten why part of the underside needs blacking. Um … would it be at the back where turbulence from the propeller might inflict damage on the paint there?

    • I’ll start with the wider picture: it would be no bad thing to black the entire underside, it’s just generally too expensive and unwieldy to do, and few yards have the facility to jack the boat up sufficiently and safely. However, for the bits you can reach, including the section at the back, it is worth blacking. In addition, that section is roughly on the waterline which is where most rust occurs.

  4. Oh . . . this was immensely satisfying for us too David but . . . now down to Brass Tacks. What we all want to know is . . . cost? How much was the total damages to reblack your boat? How much would you have saved doing the labor yourself? And . . . Would you have benefitted by having a third layer of blacking right at the waterline? I’ve noticed at least two other youtubers who recently had their boats reblacked and they too, farmed the work out rather than to do it themselves; maybe there isn’t that much savings doing the work yourself? I love these maintenance videos, please keep them coming. One video I’ve yet to see from anyone, is the cost for engine replacement or overhaul. Also, at what number of hours is the average engine considered to have reached its’ life limit? Thanks for this one David, one of your best!

    • Traditional blacking usually costs anything from £8 – £15 per foot, depending on where you have it done and what they use. It’s not that much more expensive for them to do the work, the bulk of the cost is the bitumen itself (around £100) and the dry docking. Engine overhaul costs I’ve no idea about but a new one is about £8,000. Most will reach many thousands of hours (20k??) before they need replacing.

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