Cottage and Barn -any current issues?

I’m heading up after work tomorrow for a long weekend and will be working on the Cottage and Barn.

Has anyone noticed any issues over the last month/60th anniversary/Family Meet?
It would be good to fix any problems/restock supplies whilst I’m up. I’m aware of the lack of hoover bags but any other issues?

There was one fault logged by Tom in the Barn when we did the checks. This
was the emergency light in the downstairs bedroom.

There were lots of positive comments at the 60th about the new stove you
and Mike sorted out for the Barn when the old flume developed a hole, the
new woodshed, and about the good state of the buildings in general, which
is also a legacy inherited from George’s hard work of course.

Hope you’ve had good weather Chiz!

Weather forecast gone poor - supposed to be camping / sailing at Shell Island.Thanks Naomi for remembering George.cheers,Peter

Thanks @naomi_sorrel, I’ll take a look when I’m up there. I hadn’t had that fault reported to me so was unaware, any idea what exactly was wrong? If it is a tube I will replace, if not then we may need a sparks to visit.

The week before the 60th the lock on the bathroom door of the cottage was sticking open. I took it apart and fixed it - seems that the facing plate to the plate in the doorframe was screwed in too tight, slightly bending the lock and stopping the spring mechanism from returning the bolt home.

Not sure if it was badly installed by the locksmith, or if they are just not particularly robust locks. There is a very flimsy rubber seal keeping the rain out, and the innards are not sealed against the weather at all. I’m half wondering if we need to enclose them in some sort of rainproof shelter as I can’t see that they will hold up to the weather longer term, particularly a freeze after a damp spell?

Thanks @Max_Adamson, good to know about these glitches. We had a few problems with the locks soon after fitting but had not heard anything for a while. It’s something I’ve been monitoring to see if they are a good long term choice. I do spray the innards with WD40 every now and then, but is likely to get washed out.

I had thought of making small plywood structures -an angled ‘roof’ cover with a ply side - that could be fitted to the doors to shelter the lock and handle, with sealant against the door. Would protect against the worst of the weather and rain running down the doors. Would obviously be painted/stained to match the doors. Any thoughts?

The locks are actually relatively sheltered -especially that one- as the doors are fairly set back, and the prevailing rain doesn’t get them usually, but if we get A Good Winter I can see them exploding in a frozen shower of cogs…

I continued laying the slate path round from the woodshed to the back door, this will need to bed in (it was rather moist this weekend when I laid it) and we’ll sort that at the working meet in early October.

I have filled most of the obvious holes and cracks in the cottage, and sealed the door and window frames and done a few other minor jobs, although it was too wet to do the planned external painting and staining…

There were actually a couple of packs of hoover bags under the sink in the kitchen -consumables are either there, or on the high shelf in the shower block. Mike checks these every fortnight, so there should be a supply.

Barn emergency light was working, although a little bit flickery, so we will monitor. Any dud emergency lights/alarms should be reported immediately so we can get fixed asap. we’ll replace duds with LED lights going forward.

Mike is bringing a replacement CO monitor for the cottage bedroom as it has just gone past sell by. It is still working but will be replaced tomorrow.

The wood in the wood store is staying dry, and seasoning nicely. Just a reminder, please take wood from the LEFT hand side, and please DO NOT split any more wood and add it to the wood store as it will mix up the seasoned and unseasoned wood. We’ll split the next batch at each working meet and divide it off from the seasoned wood, this way we’ll have dry, seasoned wood all year round. Hopefully…

Thanks to everyone for reporting issues so we can fix them asap, much appreciated,


Mike P tells me there is a possibly related issue with the Cottage shower room lock, and you need to double check it is locked after shutting it. From Mike:

The fault is when you push the door handle down to open the door the bolt does not spring out when you release the door handle.

The danger is if you open that door then close it again the bolt will still be jammed in the unlock position and you will not notice this, so the
door will still be unlocked, however this can be be overcome if you shut
the door then push the handle UP, the bolt will then release and spring
back into the locking position.

I’ll be looking at the locks again soon…if anyone has any other issues with any of the locks please do let me know so we can make the right decision on whether we keep them!

The strimmer has a new cord fitted, so if any members are up, have 15 minutes spare, and the grass isn’t sopping…it could all do with a strim.

What Mel P is describing is exactly the problem we had. yes, pushing the handle UP from the inside does help it close.

I wonder if we get JC locksmiths back, given it’s only a few months old and he owes us some favours!?

Unfortunately James has been utterly unreliable, missing agreed appointments and repeatedly failing to get back to us, so even if he does agree to it, there is no guarrantee he will show up…

We were at the barn at the weekend and had two problems with the front door lock.

The main problem is that the mechanism doesn’t reset itself properly when you close the door, such that entering the code does absolutely nothing and you can’t get in. You need to lift the handle just a couple of degrees so that it goes click, before entering the code. This caught several people out on separate occasions. Presumably what’s meant to happen is that the handle naturally springs past the point where it goes click when you let it go after opening the door, so I suppose there might be some small adjustment that could fix that (or it might be frustratingly difficult to do anything!)

One of our party managed to get the lock stuck unlocked. Evidently something in the mechanism got wedged such that both handles worked all the time. The bolt wasn’t stuck - it sprung out when you released the handle, but it went back in when you pressed the handle again. After much experimentation, we locked it by holding down the handle and pressing cancel!

Neither of these things required anything but normal usage to trigger, and they’re pretty hard to work out how to fix them.

FYI I work in a church and we have many push button locks on internal and external doors, we have never had a problem with them and they are used everyday. they are made by codelocks we also have one on a completely exposed external gate by borglocks who even make marine grade locks which should be durable even in North wales…
Maybe we need to look at upgrading the ones we have?
Sara x

thanks all for the feedback, very useful. The locks clearly need some attention. I will try and get some research done before the working meet (October 7-9th, see you all there!) and we will see what the solution is before winter sets in,