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  #1  
Old 24th October 2006, 00:40
K urgess K urgess is offline
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Super Sparks

How many xRO members of SN were "electronics officers"?

Where did you do your training if you were?

Who paid for it?

How many days during the course did you NOT have a hangover?

Did you enjoy your new duties once you got back to sea?

I, as the handle suggests, was Marconi so in 1973 they sent me to Southampton to do the course. Fortunately I smashed my car up on the way back one weekend and dropped out of the course. I say fortunately because I lived in Hull and Southampton was a very long way away. Also, after a couple of trips they tried again and sent me to South Shields Martec in 1974. Oh, Heaven! It was almost better than cruisin' with Bankline.

I'd already been dumped on VLCCs so all it meant was that now I thought I knew a little more about what I was doing. I'm sure the non sparks on the site don't want chapter and verse on how hard it was for us poor sparkies but I'd like to know what the rest of you thought of it.

It was highly unusual for any of us to meet other than on W/T in passing 'cos Marconi didn't believe in multi-manned radio rooms unless absolutely necessary. The only chance was usually when being relieved and you were so ready to go home that the poor bloke only normally got a lightning tour and a few grunts. So I never really got to exchange notes with others of the breed.
Now seems like a good time.
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  #2  
Old 24th October 2006, 10:16
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I was one. I was with P&O at the time and I have to take my hat off to them for how much time and money they spent training me. When I joined them from Brock's in 1970 they immediately sent me on a one month radar course with Kelvin Hughes at the end of Southend Pier. After a few trips they then sent me on the first half of the course to Brunel in Bristol in early 1972. It was a 6 month course in those days (not sure what it was subsequently) and you could do it in 2 halves, which is what most of us, and our companies, chose to do. I attended with three other P&O R/O's (Martin Price,Derek Rice and one I can't remember) and we were in heaven as we were on full pay PLUS expenses. We lived at a house in the suburbs and tested many of the fine pubs in Bristol. I found the first half of the course fairly easy as I had done some similar type courses on specific equipment with Brocks. I got married at the end of the course and after one 6 month voyage on a VLCC with my wife as supercargo (during which time we never went ashore!) I went back to Brunel for the second half, with Derek Rice again. I found this quite a lot harder as did most other people but managed to pass and then did a few more trips with P&O before resigning. The skills were immediately put to the test on the first ship which was a gas carrier called Gambada which had a fairly high degree of automation.

My wife and I then moved to South Africa and I joined Unicorn Shipping for a few months while we got settled in and they had never had an R/O with this qualification before so I became their first 3 stripe Electronics Officer.

The piece of paper subsequently became useful because when I swallowed the anchor and went into the computer industry with Burroughs Computers they recognised the qualification but did not recognise my PMG.
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  #3  
Old 24th October 2006, 10:24
cynter cynter is offline  
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where you from Marconi Sahib?
I was a Macaroni Sahib for quite a while and had some "shitty-ships"... but it seems the shittier they were.... the happier they were.
I thoroughly enjoyed my term at sea, even if I wasn't makin' the big bucks that other blokes made with direct employment..... I feel proud to be part of a "phase in history". My morse is still as good as the day I took my PMG.
Cheers mate.... I've been down-under now for quite a while... I still have my memories..... By the way, I lived on curry for quite a few years cos the Indian/Paki bastards couldn't roast beef a la Pomme.
Cheers....... cynter
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  #4  
Old 24th October 2006, 10:26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marconi Sahib View Post
How many xRO members of SN were "electronics officers"?

Where did you do your training if you were?

Who paid for it?

How many days during the course did you NOT have a hangover?

Did you enjoy your new duties once you got back to sea?

I, as the handle suggests, was Marconi so in 1973 they sent me to Southampton to do the course. Fortunately I smashed my car up on the way back one weekend and dropped out of the course. I say fortunately because I lived in Hull and Southampton was a very long way away. Also, after a couple of trips they tried again and sent me to South Shields Martec in 1974. Oh, Heaven! It was almost better than cruisin' with Bankline.

I'd already been dumped on VLCCs so all it meant was that now I thought I knew a little more about what I was doing. I'm sure the non sparks on the site don't want chapter and verse on how hard it was for us poor sparkies but I'd like to know what the rest of you thought of it.

It was highly unusual for any of us to meet other than on W/T in passing 'cos Marconi didn't believe in multi-manned radio rooms unless absolutely necessary. The only chance was usually when being relieved and you were so ready to go home that the poor bloke only normally got a lightning tour and a few grunts. So I never really got to exchange notes with others of the breed.
Now seems like a good time.
Yes I was one of those who didn't quite realise all the extra work coming my way
I did my training at Bristol with Shell paying. Suprisingly enough not too many days on the razzle. The Electronics Cert. was supposed to be 18 months training crammed into 6 months also there was a lot of work to do 'after hours'
The results of having the qualification were bitter/sweet depending very much on the ships personnel. One some ships the C/E treated me like an equal and that work liasion was truly excellent as I would go to the ends of the earth to make sure everything worked 100%. i.e put in that extra mile. I also remember I was treated like a friend and invited in for a dram or two over a general chat.
On one particular ship the C/E didn't see why 'sparks' should have anything to do with engineers work and I was treated very much like a slave - with instructions coming via the Master (?) I remember advising the 2/E regarding some instrumentation maintenance only to be told all such instruction should come via the C/E...I really couldn't win!
A huge amount of extra work meant interwatch time was virtually non existent and shore time also but VLCC's didn't have much shore time anyway.
The good parts were standing by new builds of which I did 5 (or was it 6) I'll have to look back... and being an SRO/E.
Looking back I think the extra pressure of keeping up with the latest fitments in cargo, nav, ER, radio, radar etc. was hard though 'Uncle Joe' helped a lot by arranging and paying for many courses to help keeping me up to speed but there was always that time when you joined having never seen that particular xxxxx whatever - and you spent any free time with the manuals instead of being in the bar.... hey ho, it was a rum life (or lack of it )

Cheers,

Mike
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  #5  
Old 24th October 2006, 10:37
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mikeg, when did you do your training in Bristol?
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  #6  
Old 24th October 2006, 11:31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Selman View Post
mikeg, when did you do your training in Bristol?
Don't exactly have the dates but my Cert. is dated 5th November 1973. It was the six months in one go. Good to be on full pay plus expenses. Rented a flat in Bishopston, Claremont road. As I lived in Worcester, sometimes went back there at weekends if studying allowed.

Mike
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  #7  
Old 24th October 2006, 11:41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Selman View Post
me on a one month radar course with Kelvin Hughes at the end of Southend Pier.
Getting the train to work I remember it surreal hearing the Pier amusement noises in class. There were two Japanese students taking lots of pictures of the Imaging Retaining Panel mechanism..I wonder if there was a far east copy...
Mike
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  #8  
Old 24th October 2006, 12:00
K urgess K urgess is offline
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Mike

I'm supposed to be working so this is a very quick query before the grey cells forget the question.

What is an Imaging Retaining Panel?

I imagine it's probably something us up north called something totally different and the penny will drop after a simple explanation
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  #9  
Old 24th October 2006, 12:23
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Mike, I need to check the date of my cert when I get home but we might perhaps have been on the same course but off the top of my head I can't remember anyone from Shell, but it was a very long time ago.

I rented a flat near Clifton Common for the first section of the course and that was very nice. We couldn't get somewhere quite as nice for the second half when my wife, Derek and I shared a subterranean place in Redland. Convenient for everything but the flat was cold.

I do remember working hard to get this thing including quite a lot of study in the evenings.
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  #10  
Old 24th October 2006, 12:53
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Multi-Manned Radio Rooms

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marconi Sahib View Post
It was highly unusual for any of us to meet other than on W/T in passing 'cos Marconi didn't believe in multi-manned radio rooms unless absolutely necessary.
Since the shipowner was renting the R/O from Marconi Marine [or one of the other marine radio companies], the attractions of only carrying a single R/O on the ship were entirely in favour of the owner. Marconi would have been happy to supply [and be paid for] ten R/Os per ship. Unfortunately the owners were never convinced of the value of even one electronics man - see how keen they were to adopt the GMDSS [which removed the regulatory requirement to carry a Sparks]!

On those cargo and cargo/passenger ships where one or more trainee/probationer Sparks were carried, the owners only paid for the Chief R/O - the only one mandated by the regulations; Marconi Marine paid the salaries of the others. The shipowner considered that paying for the food and accommodation of the extra R/O[s] was more than fair recompense for the additional radio/electronic operating and maintenance services that they provided.
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  #11  
Old 24th October 2006, 13:20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marconi Sahib View Post
Mike

I'm supposed to be working so this is a very quick query before the grey cells forget the question.

What is an Imaging Retaining Panel?

I imagine it's probably something us up north called something totally different and the penny will drop after a simple explanation
It was used in the Redifon SDR (Situation Display Radar), The image retaining panel had the radar display image projected on to it, the panel stored the image projected until erased. This way the panel would give tracks of ships over time as the image was built up. The panel required to be under under gyro and speed input also, to long to explain here... The panel was a sort of erasable storeage electroluminescent panel that glowed in the dark if excited (I do that as well )

Mike
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  #12  
Old 24th October 2006, 13:29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Selman View Post
Mike, I need to check the date of my cert when I get home but we might perhaps have been on the same course but off the top of my head I can't remember anyone from Shell, but it was a very long time ago.

I rented a flat near Clifton Common for the first section of the course and that was very nice. We couldn't get somewhere quite as nice for the second half when my wife, Derek and I shared a subterranean place in Redland. Convenient for everything but the flat was cold.

I do remember working hard to get this thing including quite a lot of study in the evenings.
I also remember the flat being icy cold returning some Sunday nights and as I live in the Highlands of Scotland now it still remains a very cold memory brrrr.
I was directly employed by Shell having moved from Redifon when Shell offered me what amounted to 100% increase in salary...I received quite a strong letter from Redifon as they had placed me on quite a few courses, I can't blame them though..but hey 100% could not be ignored for long

Mike
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  #13  
Old 24th October 2006, 13:32
K urgess K urgess is offline
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Thanks, Ron, for the explanation.

It was always easier from our perspective to blame our employer or someone like Stan Padfield at East Ham for our misfortunes.

I did find it strange that one company insisted on an Electronics Officer when there was absolutely no need for one that I could see. The fact that I got lumbered with the same company and same ship twice is probably the result of me telling them so. There did seem to be a limited market for REOs.

I never sailed with another RO except for my first 6 months. When I was doing the REO bit it seemed to me that qualified REOs were a little thin on the ground. I had to stand by my last ship in drydock for about 2 weeks because they couldn't find an REO to relieve me. When my relief did arrive he wasn't qualified, had never seen a supertanker before and I had to stay and hold his hand for a week before they would let me off. Wasn't his fault he seemed a good lad and was a quick study but a bit out of his depth. I resigned when I got home mostly because I was overdue to swallow the anchor.
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Old 24th October 2006, 13:47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marconi Sahib View Post
Thanks, Ron, for the explanation.
I never sailed with another RO except for my first 6 months. When I was doing the REO bit it seemed to me that qualified REOs were a little thin on the ground. I had to stand by my last ship in drydock for about 2 weeks because they couldn't find an REO to relieve me. When my relief did arrive he wasn't qualified, had never seen a supertanker before and I had to stay and hold his hand for a week before they would let me off. Wasn't his fault he seemed a good lad and was a quick study but a bit out of his depth. I resigned when I got home mostly because I was overdue to swallow the anchor.
Trainee R/O's were also a mixed blessing, five in all. One I didn't see for a week because of severe seasickness for which I sympathise. Three were truly excellent and after a while could do watches and repairs mostly unsupervised. One was an unmitigated disaster..even with supervision everything he touched caused more problems that the original fault. I remember five hours before sailing he dropped a 'pea' lamp into the innards of a Marconi Predictor Radar...I located it just in time, as it would it shorted out circuitry.
Anyone else with Trainee R/O tales?

Mike
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  #15  
Old 24th October 2006, 13:59
K urgess K urgess is offline
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Cynter

I live in East Yorkshire at the mo and when I was at sea my home port was Hull although Eastham and Liverpool depots would probably argue that point. Your name seems familiar, we may have met or my grey cells may be getting tangled up again. You're right about the ships. The worse the conditions the better the trip. I suppose it's the old make the best of it attitude.

Thanks Mike.

Makes me glad I never sailed with Redifon radars. Marconi was bad enough.

One of my mates from radio college sailed for Shell and I'm sure he did it as a Marconi sparks. I seem to remember him being on the Drupa. I lost touch with him so I don't know if he took them up on the offer or had moved on by the time it was made.

I do remember that the course at South Shields was completely different to the one at Southampton. The So'ton one had the course centred around a satellite weather receiving station and part of your pass was having built and incorporated a unit of your own design into the overall receiver system. I was given the design of an IF strip as my project. Not really too thrilled with that idea plus the fact that the digs were bloody awful.

South Shields was a completely different kettle of fish. The first term's digs were excellent and for the second term we rented a luxury flat in Gateshead. Our landlady was a model and Supermac had the top floor apartment. We had a baby grand in the lounge and Marconi was paying for all of it! Oh Yes, the course was different as well. Mostly how much of their clapped out equipment you could fix in an afternoon after a lunch in the local pub. It was much easier going than So'ton and there didn't seem to be any need to study out of hours because they made it stick in class. My favourite method of revising for exams was a case of beer to the right and a pile of books and notes to the left. The general idea being that the case of beer was finished before the books.

I came away with my MNTB electronics, that silly City & Guilds Marine Electronics Certificate and a City & Guilds T3 in electrical power. I was always annoyed that C&G wouldn't grade the MEC as a T5 or whatever.

Of the lads that did the course with me I can picture their faces but the only name I come up with is Dave for a Marconi lad who came from Manchester and was most disappointed when he wrote off his car against a lamp post in Sunderland and the council charged him for the damage to the post. One other one was from Wick or Thurso and very tall and the third one was from Canada I think and may have been a Mike. Those are the ones I shared digs and the flat with. There was another Marconi man who was irish from Dublin and had his wife staying with him in digs in Jarrow or somewhere like that. The rest are just a blur. I'm sure there were more than just the 5 of us doing the course but too many nights in the Chelsea Cat or Rupert's followed by an Indian down Ocean Road has done for me.
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Old 24th October 2006, 14:06
K urgess K urgess is offline
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Mike, having never sailed with a junior I can't participate but if you want some tales from the junior's perspective then I can do that.
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Old 24th October 2006, 14:25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marconi Sahib View Post
Mike, having never sailed with a junior I can't participate but if you want some tales from the junior's perspective then I can do that.
Back when I was a Jnr the Chief R/O didn't want a trainee so life wasn't too good..but he left after a month and the next R/O was superb taught me lots and left me in charge while he topped up his bronzie

Please tell about your experiences...then I'll tell you about some Southampton landlords experiences
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Old 24th October 2006, 20:37
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Back when I was a Jnr the Chief R/O didn't want a trainee so life wasn't too good..but he left after a month and the next R/O was superb taught me lots and left me in charge while he topped up his bronzie

Please tell about your experiences...then I'll tell you about some Southampton landlords experiences

My trip as junior started really well . I was supposed to join the Bendoran and them being a bit posh I travelled to London in uniform. When I arrived at Eastham everyone looked at me as if I was from Mars or something. I never could understand why everybody in those days seemed to be ashamed of being in the Merch. Most civilians didn't know about the 4 and 5 button difference so they all thought we were RN anyway.

Digressing again. 1966 and I'd already been to sea briefly so I wasn't totally wet behind the ears but the lack of information was amazing. Here was I about to get on a ship and sail away to who knows where, with who knows who, for who knows how long and there were no induction courses or even a few notes. At the time the voting age was 21 so I was considered a mere youth at 20.
The Bendoran turned out to be a myth and I ended up signing on the Baron Wemyss at Dagenham's Sammy Williams wharf. Hungry Hogarth's for a first trip! I didn't know any better but apparently my erstwhile chief did and upon finding that he knew and disliked the captain decided this wasn't for him and refused to sign on. He impressed me so much in the 24 hours that I knew him that I can't remember him at all. I have a vague impression of someone the same age as me who drank a lot, seemed to want to fight everybody all the time and wasn't interested in junior sparkies at all except when they were buying a pint.
So he left and I was in charge. Some crazy crane jockey managed to knock the VHF aerial off but I just ordered a replacement from Marconi and got them to fix it. Luckily it didn't take Stan Padfield at Eastham depot long to find a replacement and two days later a chap called Ian Low from Montrose joined.
I suppose if the first bloke had stayed I would've been put off for life but this new guy taught me an awful lot and we got on like a house on fire.
I think Ian had a 2nd class like me but I'd got a radar ticket and as soon as the old man found out I was chief radar fixer even though it was a Decca and not on contract to Mimco. At least he paid me some overtime for it and was reasonably easy going most of the time.
Ian and I kept 8 hour watches together for about two and a half months before we went on to 16 hours watches. In that time he taught me everything he knew about the day to day stuff like ALRS corrections, log filling, accounts and all the rest. I did it the same way until I came ashore apart for the change to decimal currency.
One thing we used to do was compete as to who could hear the furthest away station on 500 and who could hear the most different ones. Certainly helped with the concentration so that later it was almost subconscious and I could read a book and still pick up calls from far away. I kept lists of stations QSL'd every trip after that.
We used to go ashore together unless he or I found a woman. He'd been to the States before so knew his way around when we got to Florida. His reply to a woman in Woolworths in Tampa who said "Gee you're English" was "No madam I'm British" which I'll always remember especially the way he said it.
I kept a diary for the first 2 years at sea and I've been trying to read the one that covers this trip. It seems that when we went to 16 hour watches we just got on with it. I did most of the repairs, probably because I was the one that broke it most. We used to have a chat as we changed over and he's tell me what I had to do but it was mostly more as equals than chief and junior.
What they say about Board of Trade acquaintances is right. I sailed with him for 7 months and then we parted when we got to Liverpool. I visited him in Montrose once the following year and I haven't seen or heard of him since. Not unusual.
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Old 24th October 2006, 21:49
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A good start does make a big difference. I was employed by Redifon and my first ship was the Shell chemical tanker Asprella. I had instructions to join her at Swansea docks, of course being wet behind the years I travelled in uniform until being tipped off by some kind person at the MN hotel (can't remember now the right name of the place). Apparently this was quite common with newbies as no one told them otherwise!
Due to the cargo she carried most people were ashore having blood tests (no smirking..it was for the right reasons in most cases). The cargoes were Toulene, Xylene and Benzine and smelt like it too. That cocktail is supposed to affect the blood through exposure hence the tests. I got on well with all on the ship except for the Chief R/O who was a really miserable sod who didn't want a trainee, luckily he left not long after.
As I said before the next R/O was keen to teach me everything he knew. I remember now he had a very deep tan and his uniform actually had lines of campaign colours sewn in just like an army uniform, I can't recall what he did to get those but they did look smart. It's a pity I can't recall his name now at all. (I've racked my brain to no avail) That first trip was very exciting for me, it was to a port near Ponce in Puerto Rico and my first time abroad. Went ashore and had a great time except I foolishly whilst rather pis*ed sat on a pin table machine and the glass collapsed. The bar owner held a knife to my throat asking for money..luckily the ships crew helped me out..to my eternal relief and thanks.
All in all a good ship with an excellent R/O who gave me all the confidence to join the next ship as R/O without too much fear and trepidation. Looking back there was nothing like the radio traffic then that I was to experience later on Shells gas and oil fleet.

Well I did promise a tale about a Southampton landlord and the digs several students were boarded in. It wasn't particularly good digs and the evening meals were pretty bad with food like heart or tripe, no one was happy. Ashamedly we did play a trick on the landlord who used to go to the pub most nights and he returned quite unsteadily, when he got to the front door he opened the letter box flap and reached in for a string that had the key on it, he'd then go in, rush up the stairs to the bathroom to relieve himself. Well we extended the string on the front door to about 20 feet and put vaseline on the bathroom door knob. When he came back we heard 'Oh f..k, oh sh.t' as he pulled the string through the letter box, finally he rushed up stairs at what sounded like three steps at a time, tried to open the bathroom door and thats the time he wet himself. Needless to say I had to look for new digs quite urgently.

Mike

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Old 24th October 2006, 22:30
K urgess K urgess is offline
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I still can't figure out the uniform bit. It seems like most blokes in the MN didn't want to get noticed or to admit they belonged. Sort of poor man's RN I suppose.

I got on so well with my chief that we contemplated jumping ship together in Kiwi. We were both offered jobs as TV repair men and reckoned we could run our own business in the end. Can't remember why we decided against it. He may have had a female at home and I was just starting out on the great adventure, I suppose.

I remember him trying to get out of my cabin through the wardrobe one night after a few ales. He was wearing one of those Japanese safety helmets and trying to karate chop his way out of the back of the wardrobe. It would have been a few ales after a run ashore probably 'cos we were rationed to 6 beers a week each.

He also taught me all about shark fishing which I enjoyed on the numerous occasions our Doxford quit in the Pacific.

The only thing I remember about the digs in Southampton was that the list of rules were as long as your arm, it was like the worst imaginable seaside bed and breakfast and that was all you got. I have a mental image of a dank dark room, a huge wardrobe and a lumpy bed. The whole thing was made bearable by the fact that the 3rd mate off a previous ship lived up near Bridgewater in a pub run by his dad. Not a bad run for a few ales. His brother was a petty officer on submarines so I got invited to the POs mess at Dolphin. Very memorable. Gosport was amazing in the company of underwater matelots. I didn't know that sort of thing went on, honest your honour. I had quite long hair at the time, it being the fashion in the 70s, and they couldn't understand how I was an officer and got away with it.
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Old 25th October 2006, 18:43
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Is that it?

Three of us. I knew we were a rare breed but that is suprising.

Found my notes from all those years ago. Can't understand a bloody word. The only Maxwell I can remember is the one that goes with House not the one with the theorem.

Subjects
Component construction, reliabilty and theorems to go with them.
Communication systems, modulation, selective calling, RT duplexing, Navaids (Decca, Omega, Loran, ADF, CRT DF), Facsimile, Telex, transmission lines, polar diagrams, echo sounding, tape recording, true motion, gyros, ship's logs (Sal Log, etc.), doppler, electrical supply (generation, IEE regs, consumer circuits), motors, transformers, generators, motor speed control, AC, DC, single phase, three phase, transducers, logic (binary and boolean), data loggers, printers (IBM golfball), computers, computer programming, semiconductors from theory to 1001 uses, direct drive diesel machinery, prime movers, fuel systems, cooling systems, compressors, air reservoirs, centrifugal seperators, scavenge air supplies, exhaust gas boilers, cochran composite boilers, spanner exhaust boilers, crankcase explosions, complete diesel propulsion systems, steam turbines (impulse and reaction), scotch boilers, proportional control, integral control, derivative control, split range control, cascade control, main engine controls and alarms, pneumatics, electronic alarm systems, flame failure equipment, graviner oil mist detection, smoke density monitors, combustion gas detectors, Minerva fire alarms, salinometers, ph monitors, co2 recorders, control systems, process control, transmitting magnetic compasses, automatic steering systems, and enough maths to give you a very bad headache.

Plus I seem to have a folder missing 'cos I distinctly remember doing water curtain boilers and internal/external desuperheaters and all that sort of gear.

All done in 6 months

At least it stood me in good stead for a shore job. I've also found all the reports from when I was a shoreside Marine electronic tech doing Lloyds surveys and fixing ship's gear. Some weird stuff.

My last trip was a work up and I had to negotiate overtime with Marconi or the job wasn't going to get done. I've still got the overtime report and it's no wonder I was nakkered when I got home.
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  #22  
Old 25th October 2006, 19:44
WillieG WillieG is offline  
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Hi Marconi Sahib,
I was another one, I was working for P&O Cargo division at the time, and they sent me to South Shields for it. I enjoyed it - learnt a lot, played a lot - all on full pay.
Your comment on fixing clapped out equipment after a lunchtime session brings it all back! We did the first half before Christmas 1980, and the second half after the New Year. We decided to quieten down for the second half and settled for a couple of shandies and a bacon buttie in the County at lunch times. Weekends were still entertaining, though!
Like you, I found they made it stick in college and not too much studying needed to be done until the exams were looming.
I also came away with the MEC and assorted C&G certificates.
I didn't actually sail as Electronics Officer with P&O - I transferred shortly afterwards to OCL who didn't have them, but I was still expected to fix all sorts of electronic problems, and found what I had learnt very useful.
Great thread - thanks for starting it!
Willie
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  #23  
Old 26th October 2006, 00:10
mikeg's Avatar
mikeg mikeg is offline  
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Organisation: Merchant Navy
Department: Radio Officer
Active: 1966 - 1987
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marconi Sahib View Post

Subjects
Component construction, reliabilty and theorems to go with them.
Communication systems, modulation, selective calling, RT duplexing, Navaids (Decca, Omega, Loran, ADF, CRT DF), Facsimile, Telex, transmission lines, polar diagrams, echo sounding, tape recording, true motion, gyros, ship's logs (Sal Log, etc.), doppler, electrical supply (generation, IEE regs, consumer circuits), motors, transformers, generators, motor speed control, AC, DC, single phase, three phase, transducers, logic (binary and boolean), data loggers, printers (IBM golfball), computers, computer programming, semiconductors from theory to 1001 uses, direct drive diesel machinery, prime movers, fuel systems, cooling systems, compressors, air reservoirs, centrifugal seperators, scavenge air supplies, exhaust gas boilers, cochran composite boilers, spanner exhaust boilers, crankcase explosions, complete diesel propulsion systems, steam turbines (impulse and reaction), scotch boilers, proportional control, integral control, derivative control, split range control, cascade control, main engine controls and alarms, pneumatics, electronic alarm systems, flame failure equipment, graviner oil mist detection, smoke density monitors, combustion gas detectors, Minerva fire alarms, salinometers, ph monitors, co2 recorders, control systems, process control, transmitting magnetic compasses, automatic steering systems, and enough maths to give you a very bad headache.

Plus I seem to have a folder missing 'cos I distinctly remember doing water curtain boilers and internal/external desuperheaters and all that sort of gear.

All done in 6 months

D)
Wow! That brought it all back in an instant! (not Maxwell House though)
Yes, you're right, there was some more but sadly my notes have long gone along with many manufacturers equipment manuals from training courses..they just took up too much space.
Thanks for the memories
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  #24  
Old 6th March 2012, 21:14
harryredvers harryredvers is offline  
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Organisation: Merchant Navy
Department: Radio Officer
Active: 1961 - 1982
 
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Nr:21 Three of us. I knew we were a rare breed but that is suprising
Just 5 and a stray it seems. There was at least 10 of us on the course I attended. I was a REO with C-B R&ES when I took the course at Riversdale from Sept 1974 to April 1975 and after getting the MNTB Electronics Cert and the CGLI MEC went back to sea as a REO. The work load in C-B was no different if you were R/O, REO or SuperSparks (perhaps they wore a more exotic style of uniform!) and the qualification didn't make you technically more efficacious, to the chagrin of the management and, probably, shipmates. Initially my wife suggested I do the course (to get it out of the way), my motivation I imagine at this distance was linked to emoluments - but I don't remember that it brought in any more money. C-B were not interested, I'd been with them 13-months, so I applied for and got a discretionary award from my LEA. Then, when I started on the course, C-B notified me they would pay, to keep my continuity of service and pension. That's the precis. I'll post another when I've digested the import of this Thread.
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  #25  
Old 7th March 2012, 09:44
Graham P Powell Graham P Powell is offline  
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 367
We had a guy at GKA who had been an electronics officer on one of those Denholm's container ships powered by an Olympus jet engine. ( Four hours for a complete engine change). He left us and went to Bae systems in Bristol.
One or two of the guys were really switched on with electronics and ended up in
some very good jobs. Not being very interested in electronics myself and always
having problems with old gear, I stuck to operating!.
I did have a junior on one ship . He was okay but had only ever been on MF so I had
to let him do some HF and work GKA etc. Its a funny old world because years later I had a trainee at GKA and his chief had been my old junior.
rgds
Graham Powell
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