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Hello there my fellow Vietnam Shell Tanker veterans.M V Amastra sunk 53 three years ago tomorrow 11th April 1967. Anyone out there still going strong into a head wind.We are all a lot older now.Hopefully a bit wiser.I would like to thank the unknown Viet Cong swimmer that planted the limpet mine,as no one got killed.
When we arrived in Singapore prior to loading for Nha Trang the Bum Boat girls came aboard while we were anchored . An Indian Sikh came to my cabin done a few magic tricks and then told me the name of the woman I would marry in the future.He got it Right!!. He also said we would be going home soon. He got that right also. We were going home seven days later after being sunk at 0020 hours.
It was quite scary going going midships from aft to my lifeboat,down on fore deck to tie the painter for my life boat.Great experience.Retire now and enjoy my memories of life at sea. Barney(LOL)
 

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Vietnam

I was an engineer apprentice with Shell, starting at Stow College, September 1966. My home village was Eastham, at the head of the Manchester Ship Canal. On college holiday in 1967, I saw the Amoria in QE2 dock, near my house and managed to get a look at it. Was a Doxford diesel - the only Shell motor ship I ever sat foot on.
In 1970 was on SS Hygromia in Pula Bukom, Singapore loading avgas/avtur for Bangkok but the resident Shell H boat that delivered to Vietnam had some engine room problem and we were used as a replacement for just 1 trip taking mostly avtur to Vung Tau and Da Nang.
I think the regular H boat had a mishap when an apprentice opened up a redundant pump suction flange instead of a double-bottom one to collect bilge water. The ship sank to the bottom when the engine room filled up. Never saw it but engine room was on the bottom and bow in the air. An apprentice I knew did the deed. We were in dry dock in Jurang and we couldn't take over.
 

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Well the story I heard the 3rd Engineer instructed the 5th Engineer to drain the bilges into the double Bottom.Off the junior engineer goes down and removes all the nuts on the manhole cover with the result there was a rush of water from the double bottom into the engine room.The double bottom had a hole in the plates and the inrush of water could not be stopped as there was now way of tightening the manhole cover back down and the water rose up to the boiler tops.Result of this we were always informed to leave at least 4 bolts before breaking the joint.Still remember this a advice from over 40 years ago.
 

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Well the story I heard the 3rd Engineer instructed the 5th Engineer to drain the bilges into the double Bottom.Off the junior engineer goes down and removes all the nuts on the manhole cover with the result there was a rush of water from the double bottom into the engine room.The double bottom had a hole in the plates and the inrush of water could not be stopped as there was now way of tightening the manhole cover back down and the water rose up to the boiler tops.Result of this we were always informed to leave at least 4 bolts before breaking the joint.Still remember this a advice from over 40 years ago.
That was 50 years ago and I never forgot the advice to leave 4 bolts, slackened but not undone before easing off the blank.
The engineer was a final trip apprentice who was at Glasgow (Stow) like me.
I might have a photo of it sitting **** end down, bow in the air at the wharf. The 3rd got demoted, the apprentice was Tony - known as Stony Tony by the milk girls!
 

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Does any of you Far East Shell lads remember the small orange Danish Gas tanker that used do the trip from Pulau Bukum to Various ports in Vietnam (1969/70), I used go on board some of H boats exchanging books....

Frank
 

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Does any of you Far East Shell lads remember the small orange Danish Gas tanker that used do the trip from Pulau Bukum to Various ports in Vietnam (1969/70), I used go on board some of H boats exchanging books....

Frank

I knew two little tankers... as bunker barges at Ras Tannurah. They would load a cargo of diesel and bunker etc, sit in the anchorage and bring your bunkers to you. Sounded a simple operation. The two vessels were the Tommy Viborg and Lena Christensen... or something similar. Might have been Danish or Norwegian. 1973/4

Stephen
 

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Hi Frank,

The Tommy & the Lena I mentioned, same livery. There was another Karen Fekkete…. or similar. I cannot remember the spelling correctly, it was 47 years ago! :)

Tommy Wyborg was alongside AVON BRIDGE taking bunkers. Christmas Eve, 1973. The gang on the 'bunker barge' slowed down the pumping rate so they could have a break. A few of us came over to the 'barge' and had some beers. The only way to get to the ship was by standing on a platform in a cargo net, using the ships derrick. Going over it was fine. When we came back we were rather 'untidy'. The platform tipped and we ended in a heap on the deck. The Old man was not amused!

Stephen

Just for a the photo. Spelling is TOMMY WIBORG. This one is Norwegian, not Danish. Similar livery.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Wed, 8 July 20 07:41

I sailed on the Maria Tholstrup in 1964, she was brand new, first time ever saw a duvet bed cover.Spotless ship I was cabin boy/galley boy,or Dreng Boy in Danish. I joined her in Dublin when the federation refused me a ship because I refused the Jones of Newport, Uskside she must have been in the second world war and I didn't like the look of her.The Tholstrup was on Dublin ,Milford Haven ,Cork run, climbing mountainous seas.Crew did not speak much English,and ate a lot of pickled fish and meat balls.I was only on my third ship of my seagoing career. She was going back to Denmark for drydocking and they wanted me to go with them,even went so far as to start getting a Danish seafarers card for me.But I went home to mammy after a week.And then joined the Uskbridge,and was on her for 5 months.During this time the Uskside had collision arriving into Dublin and stove in her Bow.Wasen't I lucky I refused her.
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