Clock face

Another trip including a further repair to the grandfather clock. I realised last year that I had missed a couple of crucial bearings when making the repairs to the clock mechanism itself. The chime was fine, but the clock stopped after a couple of months. I had completely omitted to check the bearings for the spindle carrying the escapement pallet; they turned out to be very loose, so needed to be replaced. So this visit was to put in replacement bushes for the bearings, which has now been done. So far, all well and good! See below to hear it …

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Calum’s Road is on Raasay, leading from Brochel Castle to Arnish. This last week we were on Raasay, and drove to the end of the road at Arnish. From there we took the path over the hills to Torran, then on over the ridge of the island to Umachan, a hamlet that is now deserted but was home to three families in the early 1900s, where they had a very hard existence.

Donald Shaw wrote a lovely tune called “Calum’s Road”, and I was determined to play by the roadside. So here’s a video:

Marwyn’s father was born in Umachan, along with all his older siblings. We now realise just how hard it was to even get there, let alone manage to eke an existence out of the poor ground; the fishing must have been crucial.

As I finished playing the tune, I realised that I had a small audience. Thanks for the appreciation!

Cuillin hills from the sea

On our Skye trip I managed a swim from the beach just across the road from where we were staying. I hadn’t realised that there was such a lovely sandy beach there, and the tide was just right. The water was really quite warm too – I think about 15C.

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Raasay and ferry

Recently we visited Raasay from Skye. It was one of our targets this year, really in connection with family history, since Marwyn’s father was born there in a remote hamlet called Umachan. We took the car over on the ferry from Skye so that we could drive up to the top of Calum’s Road (see the tune) where the path to Umachan starts.

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Crater Clavius and surrounds

In celebration for being on this planet for threescore years and ten, I upgraded my astrophotography armoury, firstly with an equatorial “goto” mount (Skywatcher Star Adventurer GTi), and secondly with a new camera, the ZWO ASI715MC. The equatorial mount solves the problem of field rotation in long exposures, and also the occasional glitches in tracking that I have with the alt-az telescope mount (which will have a continuing use both for astronomy and for amateur radio). This first image taken with a reasonably good sky (I have waited for ages; I took some images a few days earler, but they were through cloud and not as good!) is of the area of the Moon’s south polar regions centred on the crater Clavius.

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