Stairway To Heaven?

It seems not.


It wasn’t the best week to travel what with all the commotion at Calais coupled with the start of the school holidays but, a magnetising job came up in Sweden and the only way to get there at short notice was to drive. As it turned out, the run down to Dover was less fraught than expected and I and a fellow Magneteer boarded an early morning ferry after a night’s stop-over at big sister’s near Ashford.


We made good progress through Northern France, Belgium, Holland, Germany (where we stayed for the night in Lubeck) then Denmark and finally Sweden where the rain at last stopped and the skies turned into a scene from the North Norfolk coast.


Countries with a lot of water around them and made up of islands need a lot of bridges and tunnels. The Danes and the Swedes are naturally very good at these sorts of structures and there was some fabulous ironwork along our route. Most notable was the combination of tunnel and bridge between Copenhagen and Malmo. It wasn’t there the last time I was in Sweden and it made the crossing very much easier. There was a ferry from Puttgarden in Germany to Rodby in Denmark and as the wind was blowing a good 30 knots plus, we looked forward to an exciting trip. I can’t believe I said that; as a child, one look at a boat turned me green and there wasn’t a single trooping flight in a 1-11 or Britannia that didn’t see me sick as a dog. I fought air-sickness to learn to fly and now it seems I’m fine (but aero’s I would still approach with caution).

Kit cars

As we queued for the Puttgarden ferry, several of these kit cars poled up. I don’t know what they were but on their bonnets was written Noordkaap 2015. At a guess I’d have said they were on their way to the Arctic Circle in which case chap in the blue and orange job’s going to need a hat.

Denmark/Sweden tunnel

The tunnel through to Sweden combined with the Oresund bridge…


… was a spectacular piece of engineering. Difficult to get a good picture of the whole span from ground level but it’s clearer when enlarged. We were heading for Karlskrona – an island on the East side of Sweden – and the high voltage cable manufacturer, ABB. Once there, we were to hook up with the Topaz Installer ..

Topaz Installer

… and set up the magnetising gear ready for an early start on Monday morning. It was my turn to do the night-shift which in this quiet little spot wouldn’t be a problem…

Karlskrona marina

… until I noticed that the main road was blocked through the town and a lot of marquees began to appear outside the hotel. It transpires that the ‘Skargardfest’ is on this week so while decent hard-working people are trying to get some shut-eye, there’s going to be a lot of disgraceful behaviour and popular music going on outside my window.

And we know where that leads to.





3 comments on “Stairway To Heaven?

  1. Paul Needham says:

    Hi there

    Very interesting blog and lot’s of useful stuff on here , can I ask have you upholstered your seat yet ?

    I may have to build something similar and have no idea how to tackle upholstery and can find little guidance on the web.

    • Hello Paul,
      Yes, the seats are done. I went to Woolies, bought a book and the materials and locked The Ambassador’s Daughter in the shed with a sewing machine!
      We actually spent a lot of time getting the shape of the sponge absolutely right – make sure you’ve got plenty of lumbar support and the right angle for the base especially if you’re going to do long journeys in the car – and once it becomes clear how the pleating is done (that’s the stuff most handy in the book) the rest is pretty straightforward.
      Getting material to go where you want it to go without looking like a dog’s breakfast is just experience but the results blended nicely with the rest of the car.
      I bought an extra metre or two of the covering material to allow for the odd lapse of concentration – a wise move!
      Good luck – it’s a good game played slowly!

  2. Paul Needham says:


    Sorry missed your reply , I was positive that I had asked to be emailled if a reply was left so much for technonolgy [ or my lack of mastery ! ]

    Yes being of the older generation lumbar support is very important !

    Woolies well there is a blast from the past 🙂

    Do you know if there is any forum catering for people building these specials ?

    There are lots of aspects I am unsure how best to tackle.

    My current plan would be to try and build something similar to say a 1913 Isotta-Fraschini-Tipo-IM on a LWB Landrover chassis and running gear thus avoiding the BIVA test ?

    Do your cars have to pass the BIVA

    Sorry for all the questions and good luck with the build.


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