I’m conscious that it’s been a while since I last contributed to the blog so the first thing to do is a summary update.
The workshop I rented was on a Wiltshire Council business park which is run by an “evil commandant” called Amanda. 40% of the units have never been occupied since the park was built and the others are mostly office type activities. Darkside canoes was the only business on-site that actually made something. My unit was adjacent to a conference room in which a lot a health and safety courses were run, so the complaints started to escalate over alleged fumes and the noise of production.
I was visited by Environmental Health, and the Health & Safety Executive, both of whom could find nothing wrong. However, Wilshire Council insisted that I install a whole load of air extraction systems. As I couldn’t afford this investment, they terminated the lease.
When one door closes, another one opens, and after a frantic search for new premises, I’m now setup in a new location closer to home and £150/month cheaper. It’s not as posh as the old place but the estate is populated with car mechanics, builders and tradesman of various sorts who are far more disruptive than me.
I’ve got it setup how I want it now, but due to the COVID lockdown, all racing has stopped and consequently so have boat orders. I’ve taken the opportunity to build a couple of stock C2s, a Demon and a Duet.
I have also been developing new footrest designs, a swivel seat, and new paddles to take advantage of kayak type techniques and stroke, all of which I hope to expand on in late posts.
There has also been an increasing demand for kayak repairs and modifications, especially to addition of heel plates under the footrests, more of this later too. So Darkside Canoes continues to push the boundaries for sit&switch racing canoes in the hope that one day we’ll all be able to race again