The Baystars are supposed to fit in any canal or lock, thanks be to their relatively small measurements, beam =width at the waterline), draft (depth below the waterline) and air-draft.

This is mainly true as far as the draft is concerned, only 75 cm from the bottom of the keel to the water-level, that is, when the boat was new and empty. We have measured the "Henrik Ibsen" to exactly 92 cm when we got stuck on the canal bottom under the concrete bridge at Mary Lynch's in 2017. Other than that it means that it is only on the Barrow Branch of the Grand Canal that you are likely to face any depth-hindrance, at least if you travel after mid-summer, and the other canals you may travel are cleaned and the weeds cut. Sometimes Waterways Ireland lower the level intentively to make weed-cutting easier. They do not always tell you, but they may help you if you get stuck.

The air-draft of the Baystar is 265 cm above the water-level, providing the chimney is not taller (a good few of them are!) This mean that the boat is at least 20 cm too tall to get into Dublin on the Grand Canal without Waterways Ireland lowering the level in the Ringsend basin with more than 20 cm.

The same procedure applies if you are leaving Dublin via the Royal Canal. Waterways Ireland will have to let water out from Spencer Dock to lower the level under Sheriff Street Bridge, at the same time as the Newcomen Railway Bridge is lifted (happens approx. once a month) and the tide is out to make it possible to empty water out of the Spencer Dock at all! A lot of administration needed.

The beam of a Baystar (approx 380 cm) does not cause many problems, except it is too wide for the Ulster Canal Locks (not opened yet). Overgrown locks on the Grand and the Royal, full of weeds and rubbish can prevent the gates from opening properly, and as there are just the width of a fender to spare, it is often a solution to remove the fenders to be able to go through the worst locks.

The length of the Baystar is announced as 36 feet. We have measured it to be slightly more than that, very close to 38 if the swim-platforms are includes.

We have also investigated the possibility of bringing a Baystar to the continent. On the French canals they have the same air-draft limitations as they do around Dublin, and you probably cannot expect the same service of lowering basin-levels everywhere.

20 Aug 2016

K. Bye of the "Henrik Ibsen"