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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wonder if there others like me ; deck people who always wanted to ask a
question about engines but were afraid to do so.

Mine has always been the following and as it concernes 40 years ago, I think
I can ask it now.

In the 1960's sailed on many of the Denholms ore carriers with opposed
piston doxfords - 3 or 4 cylinder depending on the class. I often heard the
engineering staff refer to something called the "wrong way alarm".
This was long before computers and automated engine rooms.
Some of our engineers used to make rather degrading remarks about the
main engine and call it terrible names , but if an opposed piston doxford
was smart enough to know that it was turning the wrong way then it couldn't have that bad.

Can any of our engineering bretheren shed any light ?.

JC
 

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The wrong way alarm was interlinked between the engin telegraph and the engin . If the engin was to be run in a direction oposite to that requested ( bridge )and answered ( E/R ) on the telegraph the alarm would sound . There would be different configurations of exactly how this was achieved depending on the telegraph and engin manufacturer. I will go back to my books and see if I can find some detailed arrangements if anyone is interested .
Derek
 

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Wrong Way Alarm

Derek Roger said:
The wrong way alarm was interlinked between the engin telegraph and the engin . If the engin was to be run in a direction oposite to that requested ( bridge )and answered ( E/R ) on the telegraph the alarm would sound . There would be different configurations of exactly how this was achieved depending on the telegraph and engin manufacturer. I will go back to my books and see if I can find some detailed arrangements if anyone is interested .
Derek
The Wrong Way Alarm was just that, an Alarm, from my dim recollection it was
a small DC generator attached to the end of the camshaft and if the output
differed from the telegraph instruction an alarm panel lit and a horn sounded on
the starting platform.
3cyl Doxfords were notorious for starting the Wrong Way,as what occured on the Naess Trader at Port Talbot when she struck the piles at the Smokeless
Fuel Plant adjacent to Margram Wharf, damaging her steering gear.
 

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Arran ;
I never sailed with 3 leg Dox ( only 5 cyl P type ) but I did hear they were notorious for tricks during starting attempts . Apparently they would sometimes fail to start ( Say Ahead ) and the engineer would then have to give a kick astern ; stop and try again .
Of course everytime this would happen the wrong way alarm would sound as it was the opposite mavement from that requested by the telegraph .Then the phone would go with some irate Old Man asking questions .
Doxfords were a handfull on Stand Bye without having to chat on the phone about things which were beyond the scope of bridge compehension in any event .
Derek
PS Think there may be a wee bit of fall out on this subject ??
 

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Where is the Engineering site????

Dox cant find the site so will post a little Telegraph incident entering Melborne on the Mahout9 (67/68 ) on this post . You would know when as the Melborne Cup was on at the time . Didnt make it for the Cup but went to the Oaks Next Day and picked the winner ( 33to1 I think ) payed hansomley anyway and I was able to afford to take my girlfriend and her parents to dinner afterwards . They had been kind enough to take me out for the day .
 

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Engin Telegraph

When 5th Eng on Mahout 67/68 our 2nd Eng was put ashore in hospital in Sydney and we got a temp for a few ports from the Aussie pool . Guy was called John from the Gorbals ( Glasgow ) and quite a diamond in the rough . He was 2nd on the Aussie coast on an ore carrier .
I called him Gorbals John ( which he seemed to like ; me being from Scotland )
We were entering Melborne and the Mahout was not using the bridge control due to gremlins which we had not at that time managed to exorcise .

John was on the sticks and I the Telegraph. We were getting lots of orders and usually before we could start the engine another order would be rung etc etc .We were running a bit low on Air and the telegraph stared its dance again ; I was answereing but John was doing Nothing ! just looking at the telegraph .

I said "John you better give them Something ? "

" Get me the Bridge " I obliged and called and passed the phone over and observed the following conversation .

" Whos this ?" pause " Piss off and give me the old Man " Pause "
" Hello Captain 2 nd Engineer here . Tell the Pilot to get his baces out of the F*****ing Telegraph were just about out of starts ! "

We got no more orders ; the vessel was put alongside with Tugs .

Derek
I have another story about John but think it may be better in Mess Deck than this post .
 

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Engineering Thread can't be found

Derek,

I'm in!! There is no engineering thread, only a picture gallery thread for mechanical things. Perhaps we should have a "Tales from Engine Room", thread???

I, as many of us, I am sure, have been in similar cir***stances with the use of air and demands from the telegraph. The old Doxford's where a work of art to get going sometimes - what with fuel pressure to maintain, air pressure to maintain, selecting ahead / astern and coordinating the air start lever with the fuel lever and hopeing that you would not blow a relief valve, cause we all know what happens then! And just to compound it most of our older ships had twin engines.

I have seen it and actually done it on many occasions, ring the bridge and advise them they have one start remaining, "your choice boys ahead or astern but only one so make it count, then its 10mins before the next one. I hope we lines on the tugs?!" Sailed with one Chief who instisted that an engineer, normally a junior or a cadet, was on the bridge driving the "stick" with bridge control - as you can imagine that went down like lead balloon.
 

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In my latter days as Chief on bridge control vessels and with competant 2nds ( of which all our ships had ) I spent most of the Stand Bye on the bridge .Not the approaches but the final docking and close waters .
The Company had a disaster on one vessel which hit the quay in Colombo setting back the bow 22 feet ( folded up like an accordion up to the collision bulkhead ) Vessel had bridge control and when the ship didnt respond to the Ka Me Wa ( CP Propeller ) the old man apparently said thats it nothing I can do . He in fact could have clutched out the engines or hit the Emergency Stop. It would not have given him control but it would have stopped a full power collision with the Quay.
My presence on the bridge was never an issue and all the Captains I sailed with were happy with the idea . I had a good relationship with all the Old Men I sailed with and there was mutual respect of our different talents .
When I was apprentice 2 or 3 times a trip the deck and engin apprentices would have to reverse rolls .

Deck had to do the E/R telegraph and fill in the Log and E/R apprentices do the Bridge Job . Taught us both and gave us understanding of each others jobs .
I wonder if that was something exclusive to Brocks or was it the norm ?
It certainley did help us all at that time .
Derek
 

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Tales from the Engine Room.

The deck / engine exchange was the same on all of our ships, and yes it gave each an insight as to what went on in the different departments. I cam remember we had, as cadets, a little booklet that had to be filled in on each voyage, as a cadet, you did. I am sure there was bridge time in there that had to be signed off. The "purple peril" is was known as, the booklet that is? Maybe that was just for NZSC?? We also had to keep a journal of our time at sea. I never actually bothered, mores the pity. I also did not keep a record of who and when sailed with various people.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Gentlemen , thank you for the explanation of the wrong way alarm.

As a young deck apprentice in the early 60's there was something
facinating about watching an opposed piston doxford in operation
though I dare say the facination was not shared by the E.R.staff.

Tell me , what and where is the entablature. That's my second and
last question.

JC
 

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The entablature is the area on top of the crankcase, where the camshaft, fuel valves, air start valves, relief valves etc. live.
Just to add to the collection of exchanges between Engine Room and Bridge on the subject of air pressure, "You've got one more start, or two toots on the whistle."
Seasons Greetings to all our readers! (To quote the back of many toilet doors.)
Peter
 

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The main frame of a diesel engine housing the liners etc as opposed to the bedplate which supports the crankshaft and the cylider heads which are self explanetory .
On a small engine like a car it would be called the engine block .
If I havnt got it right someone will correct me Im sure . .
Derek
 

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Tales from the Engine Room

The "Entablature" on a meduim speed or high speed engine is commanly referred to as the engine block, it houses the cylinders, liners, water jackets, pistons and camshafts, cylinder heads (covers) are bolted to the top of the entablature and the crankshaft is either fitted to a bedplate to which the entalature is bolted to or underslung and a fixed to the lower portion o fthe entablature.

In a slow speed engine the entablature is the uper part of the engine or the "middles" the water jackets, scavange spaces and on some engines the camshafts and fuel injection equipment along with the combustion belt. The enablature is a fixed to crankcase coloums which form the engine frame which are in turn bolted to the engine bedplate. On some engines very large bolts extent through the engine frame to the bedplate and up through the upper regions of the water jackets. Called "tie bolts" these bolts hold the engine together both in tension and compression. These engines are known as catherdral engines due to the sheer size of them, some as large as three story houses and most allowing persons to actually get inside to work. Standing on piston crowns to grind carbon rings away from the top edge of a liner to enable pistons to be withdrawn was / is the norm.

That's it can I do my oral now?
 

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Well done Mr Dox, I am pleased to anounce you've passed!! Now, in keeping with tradition, you should go and have a skin full!
 

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Thanks mate but from my recolection it's YOUR shout! (Night)

Takling of which, which we wern't does anyone remember the book that had to taken around to each officer, the old man and the chief to get them to sign it to advise everyone of a shout in the bar. We had books for Clox, AC going on / off, shouts, and of course the turning gear book!
 

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Didnt need a book in Brocks Dox ( No Bludgers ) everyone had their shout although it was discouraged a bit so that juniors would not be expected to treat the old buggers who were earning a lot more . . On a Birthday it was always Birthday Boy who paid the chit !
 

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Dox Im considering passing you but may have to give some mark down on the spelling ( Thats Rich coming from me ! )
Remember in the orals you will be asked to " Blow a Glass " and an error is immediate failure and 6 months sea time before a resit .
Derek
 

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Del,
My spelling is unfortunately is sh.t, however the examiner must have understood me.

I had better get a glass and learn to blow.

We knock of in an hour or two for 11 days, so

Pip pip and have a good one.
 
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