Cruiser Machinery Operation - Ships Nostalgia
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Cruiser Machinery Operation

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  #1  
Old 28th June 2020, 01:56
blueprint2002 blueprint2002 is offline  
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Cruiser Machinery Operation

It appears that the last cruisers of the RN, Tiger and Blake, were placed in reserve only around 1979, so I am hopeful that there will still be many members who have served on those ships.
I understand that they had four sets of turbines, driving as many shafts, the outer two in the Forward Engine Room, the inner two in the Aft Engine Room. Considering the age of the ships, it seems likely that the turbines were controlled from the plates, with the main steam piping routed so as to bring the manoeuvering valves, in each engine room, conveniently to one central position , together with some of the key instruments (RPM, Vacuum, Boiler pressure etc). If so, there would be a need to designate one of the two as the controlling engine room, from which the EOOW would relay necessary instructions to the other, as well as to the boiler rooms (believed also two, each with two boilers).
Could anyone comment on this, how it worked in practice? For example, on receipt of a telegraph order, say increasing speed from Slow to Half Ahead, on all four shafts, what might be the sequence of events in the two engine rooms and in the two boiler rooms?
Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 28th June 2020, 09:44
oilkinger oilkinger is offline  
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I spent my time in the Oz navy on carriers & destroyers. Both with 2 engine rooms and 2 boiler rooms.
The forward engine room, No.1, was always the controlling engine room.
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  #3  
Old 28th June 2020, 10:11
oilkinger oilkinger is offline  
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Both engine rooms had telegraph repeaters. Changes in engine orders and RPM would be confirmed back to the bridge from the controlling engine room. At the same time the changes would be advised to No.2 engine room and both boiler rooms via internal communications squark box - from No.1 E/R.
On steam ships with ACC ( automatic combustion control ) The boiler rooms didn't really need to be advised that revs were increasing because when the E/R throttles were opened the demand for steam increased causing a pressure drop in the controlling diaphragm valves. The ACC then took over and readjusted the valves for oil, water and air increases necessary to produce a greater steam volume.
Sitting at the control panel in the boiler room one would suddenly hear all the machinery increase in tempo automatically, like a full orchestra going up tempo. No need for communications.
Reverse for decrease in steam demand - reduced RPM.
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  #4  
Old 29th June 2020, 02:01
blueprint2002 blueprint2002 is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilkinger View Post
Both engine rooms had telegraph repeaters. Changes in engine orders and RPM would be confirmed back to the bridge from the controlling engine room. At the same time the changes would be advised to No.2 engine room and both boiler rooms via internal communications squark box - from No.1 E/R.
On steam ships with ACC ( automatic combustion control ) The boiler rooms didn't really need to be advised that revs were increasing because when the E/R throttles were opened the demand for steam increased causing a pressure drop in the controlling diaphragm valves. The ACC then took over and readjusted the valves for oil, water and air increases necessary to produce a greater steam volume.
Sitting at the control panel in the boiler room one would suddenly hear all the machinery increase in tempo automatically, like a full orchestra going up tempo. No need for communications.

Reverse for decrease in steam demand - reduced RPM.
Thank you, Oilkinger, for an illuminating response.
I understand that one reason for two engine and two boiler rooms was so that the machinery could be run in “units”, as two quite independent sets, so as to minimise the effect of a breakdown or of action damage. However, when necessary, or even convenient, the units could be linked together, and this might happen more often in peacetime.
Would there be any difference in the operating procedure you have described, under these two different conditions?
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  #5  
Old 29th June 2020, 09:23
oilkinger oilkinger is offline  
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Gee - you're testing the memory banks now Blueprint. ( 1963-71 )
Normally we steamed in unitary mode - one boiler in each boiler room fired up and providing steam to the two engine rooms - separately. There were 2 boilers in each B/R.
Normally No.1 boiler room steam going to No.1 engine room and 2 B/R going to 2 E/R.
The idle boilers were banked with blanket steam to have them temperature ready for fast firing up in emergency situations or when going to action stations when all 4 boilers were online.
All steam supply could be cross connected. e.g. No.1 B/R steam to No.2 E/R.
Whooling long at full speed in a Charles F Adams class destroyer was an exhilarating experience. ( The Oz navy had 3 of these ) The vibration on the quarterdeck was such that it felt like standing on the handle of a jackhammer. In the B & E rooms the decking plates would pop off their screws and windows & pointers would pop off pressure & temperature gauges. With superheated pressure of 8770 kPa ( 1275 PSI ) the boys down below are very edgy about a steam pipe failing.
And in action, a projectile can pierce the hull, misses you, fails to detonate, but nips a steam pipe on the way through and its Goodnight Irene for all the engineering bods on watch. No wonder we were a hard drinking mob - only way to keep the nerves in check.
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  #6  
Old 29th June 2020, 10:00
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The Cruiser Black Prince , like most Naval warships had pressurised boiler rooms with forced draught fans pressurising the whole space .
This meant that entry to the boiler room was via air lock doors where you entered a chamber and closed the atmospheric entry door behind you before opening the exit door into the boiler room . The dull thud of the increased pressure , just an inch or two of water gauge head , was quite a wierd experience .

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Old 29th June 2020, 12:17
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Some of our locomotives had pressurised engine rooms. Great for keeping the desert dust out but 'less good' at keeping engine room fumes out of the cab.
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  #8  
Old 29th June 2020, 16:21
oilkinger oilkinger is offline  
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Arrgghh yes Spongebob - pressurised boiler rooms. Standing on the bottom plates in front of the boiler was not a good place to be when some bugger momentarily cracks open both airlock doors as a prank. Seeking oxygen, the flame shoots out of the boiler front register like a squirt from a flame thrower. Frightens the blazes out of you plus singes the beard and eyebrows.
I don't think too many naval s/ships had pressurised boiler rooms from the late 50's. I ended up on Charles F Adams class DDG's with non-pressurised boiler rooms. The boilers were double jacketed ( cased ) with the pressurised air contained between the inner and outer jackets. From memory the gap between the 2 was about 30 to 40cm.
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  #9  
Old 29th June 2020, 19:36
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If you get a copy of "Admiral Clanky Entertains" by Patrick Middleton there are some descriptions of "Blake"'s machinery (from 50p on Amazon!!)
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  #10  
Old 30th June 2020, 02:04
blueprint2002 blueprint2002 is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilkinger View Post
Gee - you're testing the memory banks now Blueprint. ( 1963-71 )
Normally we steamed in unitary mode - one boiler in each boiler room fired up and providing steam to the two engine rooms - separately. There were 2 boilers in each B/R.
Normally No.1 boiler room steam going to No.1 engine room and 2 B/R going to 2 E/R.
The idle boilers were banked with blanket steam to have them temperature ready for fast firing up in emergency situations or when going to action stations when all 4 boilers were online.
All steam supply could be cross connected. e.g. No.1 B/R steam to No.2 E/R.
Whooling long at full speed in a Charles F Adams class destroyer was an exhilarating experience. ( The Oz navy had 3 of these ) The vibration on the quarterdeck was such that it felt like standing on the handle of a jackhammer. In the B & E rooms the decking plates would pop off their screws and windows & pointers would pop off pressure & temperature gauges. With superheated pressure of 8770 kPa ( 1275 PSI ) the boys down below are very edgy about a steam pipe failing.
And in action, a projectile can pierce the hull, misses you, fails to detonate, but nips a steam pipe on the way through and its Goodnight Irene for all the engineering bods on watch. No wonder we were a hard drinking mob - only way to keep the nerves in check.
Sorry, I should have realised that destroyers and carriers must have been a while ago. (And I was thinking Daring-class destroyers!)
But your memory seems excellent, all you recall sounds exactly right.
Including your comments on 1275psi steam. 550psi/850F was scary enough!
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  #11  
Old 30th June 2020, 02:07
blueprint2002 blueprint2002 is offline  
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Originally Posted by Duncan112 View Post
If you get a copy of "Admiral Clanky Entertains" by Patrick Middleton there are some descriptions of "Blake"'s machinery (from 50p on Amazon!!)
Thank you Duncan. That is worth a try.

Last edited by blueprint2002; 30th June 2020 at 02:07.. Reason: punctuation
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  #12  
Old 30th June 2020, 04:52
oilkinger oilkinger is offline  
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blueprint - re your#10 post. We had 3 Darings in the Oz navy from the late 50's to the early 80's. We lost one of them sunk in 1964 when HMAS Melbourne, our carrier, collided with it. 92 dead. I was on the carrier at the time. Second week at sea and just 16 yo.
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  #13  
Old Yesterday, 15:51
blueprint2002 blueprint2002 is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilkinger View Post
blueprint - re your#10 post. We had 3 Darings in the Oz navy from the late 50's to the early 80's. We lost one of them sunk in 1964 when HMAS Melbourne, our carrier, collided with it. 92 dead. I was on the carrier at the time. Second week at sea and just 16 yo.
Sorry to have reminded you of this disaster.
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  #14  
Old Today, 01:29
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vickentallen vickentallen is offline  
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Tiger had an MCR for use in ABC state, all controls to boilers ,turbines , aux were by Sunvic Controls (pneumatic), boilers were enclosed no airlocks, as far as I can remember engine and blr' rooms were fully manned Fwd enginroom the controler
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