I am often asked to provide 'Back cabin stoves' for the historic narrow boats. These were commonly 'marinised' portable cooking ranges typically 20"-24" in width depending on wether or not they were used in a 'Butty' or 'Motor' boat. Although the ranges of this size are very rare they do come up and I try to keep at least a couple in stock. However the most prominent and unique feature to the ranges used in the back cabin was the highly polished brass fiddle rail and standards. Finding original sets is practically impossible and in fact very few actual exist even on original ranges. I am pleased to say that I have produced a set of patterns for the rail and standards taken directly from an original set. These standards and rail will be cast in Somerset in brass to the exact design and dimensions as the original ones used on working boats throughout the Uk. They will be available as part of my restorations only and not as a seperate set. Below is a picture of an original set as reference.
We visited The Blackcountry Museum at Dudley over the summer so I thought I'd share a few photos of what we got up to while we were there. For those that haven't been before you must! It's really one of the most amazing places I've been, the attention to detail is incredible and if you linger around until closing time you get a glimpse of the place less the throngs and its something really special. The series of three photos here are of the brass foundry, the chap is casting a horse brass. The building was originally on a different site but has been moved to the museum and rebuilt with painstaking accuracy. It was originally a manger but was converted to this little cottage industry brass mill by its original owner. The furnace doesn't have bellows but relies of a tall chimney and deep pit beneath the grate to produce enough draw.