G.S.N.C. Gannet 1959 - 1960

Three-oh
7th August 2008, 17:06
G'day folks,

I am a new member, just introducing myself.

I swallowed the anchor many years ago as a direct result of two engineroom accidents, but stayed in the Marine Engineering industry as a draughtsman then Design Engineer, spending a great amount of time in Ship Construction and Repair Yards etc. when not in the design office.

In 1959 and 1960 I was Third Engineer on the G.S.N.C. Motor Coaster Gannet, trading in the North Atlantic - principally between New York NY, Hamilton, Bermuda and Jacksonville FLA.

I would like to hear from any shipmates from that time.

Three-oh. (Pint)

K urgess
7th August 2008, 17:14
Welcome aboard from East Yorkshire, Three-oh.
Nice introduction.
Find your way around the ship, join in and enjoy the voyage.

R58484956
7th August 2008, 18:56
Greetings 3O and welcome to SN. Spent 4 hours with GSNCo; that was enough. Bon voyage.

bert thompson
7th August 2008, 20:28
Welcome to this wonderful and addictive site
Best wishes
Bert.

billyboy
7th August 2008, 22:42
Welcome aboard from the Philippines. Enjoy all this great site has to offer

benjidog
7th August 2008, 22:43
Welcome from Lancashire.

I hope you will enjoy the site.

Regards,

Brian

gdynia
8th August 2008, 07:57
Welcome onboard to SN and enjoy the voyage

pete
8th August 2008, 11:25
Welcome 3/0, and I'm warning you RIGHT NOW this is the worst ship you have ever joined (Jester) My father was Master with GSNC on the Tern and the Auk doing the usual Stuff that Coasters did around the States coast. Latterly he had the Tanmerak shipping timber from Nova Scotia to Liverpool (Not good during a North Atlantic hooly) as she was only about 1,500 tons ...................pete

Bruce Carson
8th August 2008, 11:40
From Michigan, a warm welcome to Ships Nostlagie,
Make yourself at home and join in our friendly discussions at any time.

Bruce

MervynHutton
8th August 2008, 20:33
Hi 30,

I was 2nd Mate with GSNC from 1960 to 1962 and was on the Gannet in 1962 for a while, Captain Thompson was Master then. This is a bit behind the period that you were on her, I remember her as a nice tidy ship and having 'tin lids' was a lot easier for a Mate to work than some of the older ships.

Three-oh
9th August 2008, 11:04
G'day Pete,
Thanks for your reply. I remember seeing the Tern in North Atlantic waters. Somewhere I have a photo of her in St Johns, Bermuda. I sailed on her for a while later, on the cased Cognac/Armagnac trade out of Tonnay Charente to UK ports. She could only carry "clean" cargoes when there was no refrigerated trade offering.
Best Wishes, John Adams, (Three-oh)

Three-oh
9th August 2008, 11:45
G'day Mervyn,
Thanks for getting in touch. Yes, I suppose the Gannet was a tidy ship. GSNC were quite enlightened owners and had their ships built to a pretty good specification. I particularly remember the excellent Lawrence-Scott winches which were in constant use on the American trade and never let us down once. She also had superb all electric steering gear which was put to the test one night in a nine to ten North Atlantic gale. We shipped a big green one over the bows which shifted the windlass about 150mm aft, shearing its holding down bolts and electrical cables, forced aft the forward coming of No. One hatch by a similar amount and the concussion also caused the emergency hand steering to drop into engagement. Fortunately the Ward-Leonard steering motor was powerful enough to wreck the emergency gear, enabling us to continue steering the ship and held out until we reached Hamilton where we fitted the spare armature, then on return to New York, had the strained one re-wound. I guess SOMEONE was looking out for us that night, as if the "tin lid" on No. One had flipped, we would have gone down in an instant without the chance of getting a Mayday out. I heard that some years later a sister ship, it may have been "Sandpiper" disappeared without trace on voyage after transferring out of GSNC ownership. It could be that she took one over the bows with a less fortunate outcome.
Regards, John Adams, (Three-oh)

vectiscol
9th August 2008, 19:27
Welcome from a fellow draughtsman. I used to like GSNC ships when I was a lad - very neat little vessels. Where was your sturdy Gannet built, just out of interest. What type of main engine did GNSC prefer?

Peter4447
9th August 2008, 19:30
Welcome aboard Three-O from Glorious (albeit very wet) Devon.
Peter4447(Thumb)

Three-oh
9th August 2008, 21:00
G'day Vectiscol,
Thanks for your interest. "Gannet" was one of five ships built in the mid 50s to a generally similar spec, but all with detail differences. She was the only one of the five with a goalpost mast abaft the centre island. Somewhere I have a photgraph I took of her in 1959 on her normal berth in New York, with Manhattan Bridge in the background. I must see if I can find it to add to the collection.
I think all five came from different yards, the best one by general reckoning, "Sandpiper" was built by Charles Hill in Bristol. She had a beautiful marquetry panel of a sandpiper seabird in the saloon, a present to the ship from Mrs Hill. If my memory serves me rightly, "Gannet" came from the Burntisland Shipbuilding Co. Her propulsion machinery was the GSNCs usual preferred choice, from British Polar Engines of Govan. In "Gannet's" case an eight cylinder turbo charged unit. Like all of the GSNC Polars, it was non-standard. Charlie Marriott, the company's Engineer Superintendent in conjunction with British Polar, designed connecting rods with "solid" bushed top ends in place of the normal "split" ones. Most of the GSNC ships with Polars either had this type from new or were retrofitted. Personally, I disliked them and all other diesel engines intensely, but I guess that I was biased having had the comfort of sailing with a CMEW triple+Bauer-Wach turbine installation. No noise, no messy crank cases, no vibration and no racing.
Those were the days. Best Wishes, John Adams (Three-oh)

vectiscol
9th August 2008, 21:13
Very interesting. I hadn't realized that General Steam Navigation ships strayed that far. I can remember them sailing from Southampton, and seeing them on the Thames, but I thought that they only sailed to the Continent and the Mediterranean. Best wishes, and I look forward to seeing more of your experiences on Ships Nostlagia.

stan mayes
9th August 2008, 21:28
GSNC Woodcock had 5 months trading Montreal - Great Lakes in early 1950s.
I had three pals on her and they had a big pay off from much overtime.
Stan

pete
9th August 2008, 21:42
Just as a matter of interest did anybody sail with James Rowe from Arklow, My dads favourite Bosun. Hands like Hams.......................pete

MervynHutton
10th August 2008, 19:57
Just as a matter of interest did anybody sail with James Rowe from Arklow, My dads favourite Bosun. Hands like Hams.......................pete

Yes, I remember James Rowe and sailed once with him but I can't remember on which ship. Hands like shovels and quite a thirst! Good bosun though.

noryevo
8th May 2012, 10:54
Hi All, The Gannet was built by The Grangemouth Dockyard Co Ltd, I started work as an apprentice Engineer on her age 15 I/2, she was built in a dry dock, I worked on the Intermediate shaft alignment and the Main Engine chocking. The Woodlark also built in Grangemouth was her Sister ship.
G'day Vectiscol,
Thanks for your interest. "Gannet" was one of five ships built in the mid 50s to a generally similar spec, but all with detail differences. She was the only one of the five with a goalpost mast abaft the centre island. Somewhere I have a photgraph I took of her in 1959 on her normal berth in New York, with Manhattan Bridge in the background. I must see if I can find it to add to the collection.
I think all five came from different yards, the best one by general reckoning, "Sandpiper" was built by Charles Hill in Bristol. She had a beautiful marquetry panel of a sandpiper seabird in the saloon, a present to the ship from Mrs Hill. If my memory serves me rightly, "Gannet" came from the Burntisland Shipbuilding Co. Her propulsion machinery was the GSNCs usual preferred choice, from British Polar Engines of Govan. In "Gannet's" case an eight cylinder turbo charged unit. Like all of the GSNC Polars, it was non-standard. Charlie Marriott, the company's Engineer Superintendent in conjunction with British Polar, designed connecting rods with "solid" bushed top ends in place of the normal "split" ones. Most of the GSNC ships with Polars either had this type from new or were retrofitted. Personally, I disliked them and all other diesel engines intensely, but I guess that I was biased having had the comfort of sailing with a CMEW triple+Bauer-Wach turbine installation. No noise, no messy crank cases, no vibration and no racing.
Those were the days. Best Wishes, John Adams (Three-oh)

john fraser
8th May 2012, 12:05
Yes, I remember James Rowe and sailed once with him but I can't remember on which ship. Hands like shovels and quite a thirst! Good bosun though.

Sailed with James Rowe from Arklow on the Laverock 1964/65.Think he was a bit of a boxer in his younger days or gave us that impression.