Ships' Colours

Rogerfrench
18th November 2013, 05:41
A recent thread about the Donga got me thinking.
Some time in the mid 60s EDs started painting hulls all black. They also got rid of topmasts and mounted signal masts on the monkey islands.
I have seen photos of Donga and Eboe taken in the late 70s that show the structural changes, but with a darker shade of buff on masts and derricks and a reversion to white half-rounds.
Does anyone know if this was a change to all the fleet? There don't seem to be many photographs like that, or maybe I just haven't found them.

Graham the pipe
18th November 2013, 10:08
A recent thread about the Donga got me thinking.
Some time in the mid 60s EDs started painting hulls all black. They also got rid of topmasts and mounted signal masts on the monkey islands.
I have seen photos of Donga and Eboe taken in the late 70s that show the structural changes, but with a darker shade of buff on masts and derricks and a reversion to white half-rounds.
Does anyone know if this was a change to all the fleet? There don't seem to be many photographs like that, or maybe I just haven't found them.

Hi Roger, yes, ED colours and their 'changes' are very much a topic for discussion at present. From memory - such as it is these days - I think the 'all blacks' must have been 'late' rather than 'mid' 60s, in other words post GTP.

woodend
18th November 2013, 10:28
The new paint scheme must have been 'post' 1967 as the DEGEMA mysteriously arrived in Port Elizabeth then when I was Acting Tug Master there looking 'normal' if a little overworked. They obviously hadn't painted round after leaving West Africa. I went aboard but didn't know anyone. While I was in Cape Town we got a few strange ships with Elder Dempster painted in large white letters overside but this must have been after the demise of the original company and the company name was maintained.
There are five of us out here ex ED sea going staff that is Don Fowler in Richards Bay, Bob Fawcett, Gerry Ryan and Bob Liptrott in Durban and me here in Saldanha.

Rogerfrench
21st November 2013, 17:13
I knew you two gentleman would respond, and thank you both.
My point wasn't so much about the hulls going all black, as the reversion to white half-rounds, where the ships looked so much better - I think it emphasised the sheer.
I wondered if any of later generations might comment - I guess not, perhaps they are too young to be nostalgic!

Graham the pipe
22nd November 2013, 06:34
Totally agree that the white half rounds, coupled with the lighter, original mast and derrick colour 'made' the look of the ships, particularly the Eboe and the Ebani. Hopefully DB - after 'maybe' discussing this with JC - will be able to give us the definitive answer. Watch this space!

eldersuk
23rd November 2013, 00:55
Graham, I know that all ED people agree with your first sentence 100%.
I seem to remember that shortly after 'the merger' a decree went out unto all lands that EDs should use 'China Mast' on their masts and bits & pieces. Oddysey Works must have had it stored in bulk.

As for the half rounds, I have long had a suspect in mind but, you'll appreciate, I cannot name him on here. There have been discussions about just when it was discovered that black paint was cheaper than white, (because you can bet your life that would be the excuse) but there has been no definitive conclusion.

Another intriguing question is, when did the ships get the company crest on the bow? I can't remember this being the case in the 1950s, except, maybe, on the mailboats.

Derek

Graham the pipe
23rd November 2013, 11:12
Hi Derek. Would be a first if I had 100% agreement on something! However, I suppose in respect of this 'Elder's' topic it is possible as 'her indoors' isn't involved!

Back to the colours issue. What puzzles me is that it appears the original colour scheme was ditched and then reinstated - maybe not in all instances but certainly in the case of the latest pictures on the SN gallery for the Donga and the '77 Queen's jubilee picture of the Eboe in the Mersey. Has JC anything to say on this matter or haven't you spoken?

My memory is as vague as yours on the question of bow crests. G

woodend
23rd November 2013, 11:47
The 'D's all had them coming from the builders yards but whether they were the first class 'built' with them I'm not sure. I have a feeling the 'E's also had them coming from the yards..

richardwakeley
23rd November 2013, 12:10
G'day GTP (Ye who doesn't believe in 1 month West Africa trips).

I can't really add much to the discussion about ED's half round colour scheme, except to post this very bad quality photo of DALLA at Georgetown, South Carolina, in 1970. It only shows the stern, but seems to be all black. But Malcolm Cranfield's photo of her just after sale to the Greeks in late 70s shows white half rounds fore and aft, and I suppose the Greeks only painted the funnel. Also Mike Harrison's shots of Donga in late 70s show half rounds. Personally I prefer the half rounds, but I'm biassed (True Blue Flue).

On a more nostalgic note, I have forgotten what cargo we loaded at Georgetown for West Africa, but I guess it was newsprint or kraft paper. In an era before David Beckham, when few Americans had even heard of football, the coach of a local high school team came aboard and asked if we could put up a team to play them. We thought this is easy, we'll thrash these yanks. Big mistake, they kicked our a**es, I can't remember how many goals to nil, but I was in goal.

Rgds, Richard

Roger Turner
23rd November 2013, 13:27
eldersuk's
Graham, I know that all ED people agree with your first sentence 100%.
I seem to remember that shortly after 'the merger' a decree went out unto all lands that EDs should use 'China Mast' on their masts and bits & pieces. Oddysey Works must have had it stored in bulk.

As for the half rounds, I have long had a suspect in mind but, you'll appreciate, I cannot name him on here. There have been discussions about just when it was discovered that black paint was cheaper than white, (because you can bet your life that would be the excuse) but there has been no definitive conclusion.

Another intriguing question is, when did the ships get the company crest on the bow? I can't remember this being the case in the 1950s, except, maybe, on the mailboats.

Don`t suppose this is any help ref Co.Crests in the 1950`s, but it`s a nice picture of the Prahsu for your records approx mid July 1959 entering the Port of Swansea after I think her maiden voyage - she certainly looks very smart.Captain Norman Pryce,can`t remember who might be the lone figure on the bow c/o?
Sorry I`ve tried to attach the picture but I don`t know how -it`s in "My Pictures" on my PC, but the paper clip on this site doesn`t seem to function - any ideas?
I`ve also a picture of the Cambray berthed at Aarhus(?) which might have a crest 1954 - looked again almost certain she had one.I think it was Capt L.B.Silvester- ask Rodney Matthews, I know he has a copy of that picture as well (see letter he wrote to EofE a few years back)

Graham the pipe
23rd November 2013, 14:23
This, for me, will be a 'brief' comment! The GOOD news is that this topic, originally posted by Roger French, has got Es of Es 'chatting'. Yes, we all leave comments on various threads and gallery pictures but we do have our own section which is not exactly 'over active'.

STOP PRESS! [1421hrs] Is the Bob Nightingale, shown as 'active' on this thread, him of Obuasi '60?

franciscojosewaring
25th November 2013, 11:47
Hi Roger, yes, ED colours and their 'changes' are very much a topic for discussion at present. From memory - such as it is these days - I think the 'all blacks' must have been 'late' rather than 'mid' 60s, in other words post GTP.

Hi Graham, the colour changes came about with integration with blue
funnel, a standardisation procedure, the new brown was known by all as Quote KA KA Brown unquote Regards Frank(Pint)

capkelly
26th November 2013, 20:41
Having checked my photo's all the "E" ships, + Oti and Patani had the crests, so I imagine the Perang and possibly Ondo also had them as well as the mail boats. Why the other O's did not is interesting - different shipyards?

eldersuk
26th November 2013, 23:49
Weren't all the 'O's built in H&W?
I think all the ships eventually finished up with crests. They were probably retrofitted at some convenient time, like a drydocking.

Derek

Ex StevieClarkes
17th December 2013, 11:03
I was Mate on the Sulima 1964 to 1966. In March 1965 her name was changed to Mano and I'm not sure whether the colour scheme was changed then. I do remember resisting for as long as the white paint held out but at one outward voyage meeting I was expressly ordered to finish the voyage with the half rounds blacked out.

crellintk
19th December 2013, 11:27
Hi Gents. Not sure when or if the half-rounds reverted to white, but I certainly remember the 'black' day - with some widely-shared sadness.

The attached photo shows the first application of black paint to the Fourah Bay in Port Harcourt, on 22nd July 1964.

Ken

Roger Turner
19th December 2013, 19:36
crellintk
Black Half-rounds
Hi Gents. Not sure when or if the half-rounds reverted to white, but I certainly remember the 'black' day - with some widely-shared sadness.

The attached photo shows the first application of black paint to the Fourah Bay in Port Harcourt, on 22nd July 1964.

Ken

Ooow....I can see what you are going on about now! looks menacing!A bit like a sharks`s head with teeth, like the Yanks put on attack planes.

I suppose one of the reasons for doing it was, that area would sustain the most wear and maybe look tattiest?It`s rather like some people do on their cars - black `em in around the bottom

crellintk
6th January 2014, 20:04
crellintk


I suppose one of the reasons for doing it was, that area would sustain the most wear and maybe look tattiest?It`s rather like some people do on their cars - black `em in around the bottom

It may have been for practical reasons, Roger, but I seem to remember it was something to do with merging EDs with Paddy Henderson's - the hatches and bulwarks were painted grey at the same time - probably for the same reason.

Ken

Kanbe
8th January 2014, 13:26
I was on the Dalla under Paddy Henderson management in 1963/4 when the integration and supposed harmonising of the paint on ships between the two companies. The Henderson ships lost the white line between the topsides and boot topping, they also lost the grey masts and derricks. At the same time Elders ships lost the white half rounds. I recall that the Koyan was in Takoradi and the smart ass mate had jumped the gun and had the Half rounds painted white leaving the white separation line and it really did not look all that well.
There was changes later when Elders become one with Blue Funnel. Further changes were made later when the 'M's early 80's had all the topworks except the accommodation not white and China mast but a dull red
Kanbe