We had decided to put a washing machine in the kitchen area. If we were going on an extended trip, as we are planning for the summer of 2021, then we would need to either be able to wash clothes or find a laundrette and laundrettes are becoming harder and harder to find.
We expect to use the washing machine while traveling along so the motor would be used to generate the power we needed.
After much searching we finally selected a Hotpoint NSWR 843C as this seem to cover the spec we wanted, high spin speed, reasonable capacity and a quick wash cycle. This was ordered from Currys for direct delivery to Black Prince at Stoke Prior.
Next we wanted a new TV for the lounge area, we wanted a flexible device with as many possible input styles as possible, UK TV seems to be ending up as streaming service, but we have a large collections of DVD’s that would be good on the boat.
To save converting from 12V to 240V to get a domestic style TV we found the Cello range of 12V on Amazon.co.uk and the C3220 seemed to be a good fit. At 32″ it would not be massive, you don’t need a big screen on a narrow boat!
The spec was as follows:-
LARGE SCREEN: 32″ HD Ready LED TV
BUILT-IN: Integrated DVD player
FREEVIEW HD Built in Freeview HD
SATELLITE TUNER: Built-in satellite tuner for all free to air channels
USB 2.0 – record digital TV / play media files.
2 HDMI inputs for your external devices
12 VOLT TV: 12-volt power adapter included
PAUSE, REWIND, RECORD: With a USB storage device connected, you can pause, rewind and record live TV
So apart from being on 720p resolution it does come with the two HDMI ports so we could add a Amazon Fire TV Stick and use the USB port for power if required.
We visited Black Prince in December 2020 to see the progress on the painting, we had provided a basic colour scheme a while earlier which was based on the current Black Prince design, but with the dark red replace with a lighter blue and the roof a cream colour, hopefully to reflect some of the summer heat.
We also looked at some other boats that Black Prince were working on to get ideas we could use for changes we wanted to make to the internal layout of our boat.
When we had hired Chloe during the summer, we had found that the kitchen was probably a bit small for our needs especially as many of the normal restaurants and pubs we would have used were closed.
Our idea was to take out the 2nd toilet and extend the kitchen into that space. This would give us a longer galley style kitchen with possible space for a washing machine and more counter space for a microwave and my coffee maker.
We also added 2 x 2 ways 240v sockets to the design that would pop up from the kitchen surfaces when needed.
We also hoped to add a cupboard door at the end of the kitchen units that could be used from the dining table area. This would mean we had access to the space next to the cooker for additional storage.
The bedrooms and remaining toilet/shower room would remain as they were, with the small addition of moving the television into the main bedroom and getting a larger more modern wall mounted TV for the living area.
When we had used the boat in the summer it was noticeable that the leisure batteries where coming to the end of life as bed time was governed by how long they lasted. These were to be replaced with new batteries with an additional leisure battery added.
A new higher capacity inverter was also going to be fitted that provided 3000W. Black Prince recommend the Photonic Universal 3000W unit which included a built in battery charger and lots of programmable options.
We wanted to use vinyl cut rather than a painted logo on the boat basically to save cost. Black Prince recommended Brian Jones, who they have been using for many many years for their work.
The process could not have been simpler. On a phone call with Brian, I outlined what we were after, a simple icon style version of the front view of a Black Prince boat. You can almost always tell a Black Prince or X-Black Prince boat by the bow design.
Above the icon image we wanted the name and below the web site address, very quickly Brian returned with the design we now have.
I asked him to also supply a version I could use to create additional images for the web site (see our favicon and home page icon).
As part of the service Brian installed this on the boat at Black Prince along with the name on the bow. The total cost of this excellent service was £325.00 (Please only use this as a guide and remember keep it simple.)
At their Stoke Prior base Black Prince has what looks like a floating polly tunnel. They use this to float the boats into so they can control the conditions while they work on the paintwork, both stripping back to bare metal and respraying.
These picture cover a few weeks work in the tunnel.
Black Prince will paint your boat almost any colour you like, we wanted the boat to be a little brighter and Sonia my wife likes blue, we had also been advised that a dark colour on the roof could lead to a very hot interior.
So with the aid of Photoshop I took a picture I had of the boat we had hired in 2019 and started to recolour it.
First was to replace the red sides and remove any logos
Then after a bit of tidying up we could add the colours we had selected from the Black Prince recommended paint supplier Symphony Coatings (West Midlands Ltd), we could have chosen any paint from any supplier, but I have found it always best to stick to the recommended. Our picture was meant only as a guide to the painter to what we had in mind, I am sure he will improve upon our work.