My intention, much to peoples surprise, is to keep the 'moth roadworthy, improving it, replacing bits and generally making her generate the money for her repairs by renting her out. After our marathon journey north last year there were a few issues, the lack of brakes being the main one, the fact that she was running like a dog being another. It took a day (in October last year) to figure out how to jack it up, then 5 minutes to find out I didn't have any spanners big enough to get the wheel nuts off. To the rescue came Mechty and Graham and she was jacked up and stripped down, revealing leaking cylinders and ruined shoes.
First mission was brake linings and this is not a case of popping down to Halfords, they are absolutely enormous. Some super sleuthing on the part of CV components in Inverness tracked some down the right size and they rebuilt the shoes. Stage 2 was the cylinders. New seals were no problem but life is never so simple and the cylinders ended up being machined out and treated to stainless steel liners and pistons so the back brakes, at least, should now outlast the truck. I also tracked down spark plugs, made up new HT leads, rebuilt the distributor and fiddled about with the timing until she was running a bit better. All this ran a bit over time so she was three weeks late into rental, thanks go to the boys for swinging back in and helping stick her back together and to everyone who has been so understanding about either being postponed or put up in the new bothy.
On the cosmetic side Aaron Sterritt made up a new chopping board and a little oak cupboard for inside, the bed got new rails, the floor had a coat of nice osmo wax oil and after a dozen attempts at matching the colour the back wall had a coat of paint. The only sacrifice I am going to have to make in the name of practicality is that the Rayburn is going to have to go. It's so beautiful and spot on date wise but even for the moth it is just too heavy hanging out the back like that so in the workshop at the moment sits a lovely (and still not insubstantial) Quebb stove awaiting a scrape and a lick of paint.
Rest assured the Rayburn wont go to waste.
Tuesday, 17 April 2012
While uploading some new videos for the Insider I found this video I made back in 2008, not long after we first came here and when were mid way through the big redecoration. Its set to a Session A9 tune and was made up of stills taken from the kitchen window, 900 of them in all, with a view a lot of you will find familiar. Now, 4 years later, Session A9 are headlining for us on the Sunday night at the Insider. Who would have thought it?
Saturday, 14 April 2012
Apart from the sport (a subject we know little about and are not taking at all seriously) the Insider is getting organised this year. Rather than leaving everything to the last minute, and knowing that May plus June equals weddings, we decided to get on with extending and cladding the whisky bar. It's another skip dive spectacular. The larch shingles are offcuts from the bin at Russwood, the structure of the bar is old pallets clad with ends from Alvie sawmill (those are now into their third incarnation), Balvenie distillery donated a van load of barrels a couple of years back, the gate (not shown yet here) was from the tip and even the speed rails and shelves are made up from pallets, the only parts that money changed hands for are the battens at the back, a few posts and a lot of screws.
If anyone has a pile of old scaffolding boards or joists or floor boards or pretty much any useful old timber I would gladly take it off their hands, ideally in exchange for cider come festival time.
Thursday, 12 April 2012
The press has found Inshriach recently and it seems like every weekend another feature pops out. Just this last month we have had an interiors feature on the main house in the Scotsman (accompanied by a lovely article about the whole estate) then Easyjet jumped in there with this piece on the estate and how we came to be here, then last weekend the Guardian ran this about the bothy and both the Independent and the Spectator ran stories about the Beermoth. Since Christmas the truck has appeared on Yahoo.com, American Express Traveller, Conde Nast Traveller, Red Magazine, Woman magazine, The Mail, the Metro, The Sun and Country Life. Her merry trample through the media is not over yet. Next week she comes home as yet another journalist arrives, this time covering the story on behalf of her truest fans. Only absolute afficionados would be count themselves among the readers of Classic Commercial magazine.