Ships Nostalgia banner

321 - 340 of 372 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,967 Posts
Hi Trotter the time that Robert Ng was on the Cape Wrath was in early 1965, if you see his book it's worth a read its from the galley boys view onwards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
British Light was undoubtedly the worst ship I sailed on from an engineering point of view,.........................!
Every now and then, some Engineer decides to tell everyone who ever went to sea, which was the worst ship they ever sailed on..why is it always the Engineers that get the messy end of the stick?
It takes 10 minutes before somebody brings up the Italian jobs and the 'Light' gets top billing.
However whilst being absolute bastards from an engineering point of view, from the deck side, they were floating hotels. No such thing as a cabin for them, they got suites with marble bathrooms and a condom on the shelf. No bunks.......they got BEDS ffs. AND they got time to spend in them.
Not that I was jealous or anything.I wondered how long it would take before someone bought up the 'Eyeties'. They populate these forums like a blight.
But, don't be too harsh on BP. It was the only way they could get their money out of Italy at the time. I wouldn't surprise me if the Vatican bankrolled the Mafia to get the building contracts.
As 2/E, i spent 18 hours a day non stop on the 'Light'; so much so I couldn't stand the sunlight for weeks after I left the ship.
Anyone know where that set of metric spanners disappeared to?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,476 Posts
Well I certainly don't have 'em, I was only a lowly 4E in '61. The only thing I left on her when signing off was GOTB ( get off the B******) 'chalked' in devious places and that was not due to the ship but the Second!

Graham
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Well I certainly don't have 'em, I was only a lowly 4E in '61. The only thing I left on her when signing off was GOTB ( get off the B******) 'chalked' in devious places and that was not due to the ship but the Second!

Graham
Well, it was a well known aphorism in my day that, "All Seconds are B*s*a*ds".
There were, Useless Bs, Lazy Bs, Fat Bs, Deaf Bs, Tired Bs, Dirty Bs, Soft Bs, Scotch Bs, Irish Bs and last but the most common, Hard B*s*a*ds.
I was probably each of them at some time or other, but deviously, at random.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,749 Posts
The Brasil Star was seriously bad as the worst feeder with rat bag crew, all regulars bar one or two. Accommodation diabolical, no matress more a straw-capock sack infested with bugs, the heads were disgusting then the roaches every where but worse the work (deck) was mindless. I still have a scar on my wrist from a meat hook which actually got stuck in the bone by another deck wallah by accident when trying to hurl it from the costic soda wash drum on to the freezer tubes.

On saying that did two trips as her run was just the best.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
228 Posts
Graham, "Scotch Bs", what..... , not fair, according to my contacts at BP "Glasgow" was the breeding ground of marine engineers in the 50, 60 and into the 70's... comments... J
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,989 Posts
After reading Robert Ngs book thank god I never sailed on the Cape Wrath,she seems a right bast..d,did anyone else sail on her?.
In 1972 I`d left a ship with no intentions of going back to her or the company that owned her and found myself in that situation that we`ve all experienced.No job,not a lot of money and a hard search of the job market ensuing.With a couple of feelers out I approached the officers section of the pool on Mann Island.`We don`t get many opportunities for Pursers`I was told so I wandered off.A job offer with Whitco materialised which I accepted with alacrity(and never regretted)then a letter arrived from the pool with an offer of the PCO`s job on the Cape Wrath.I let them know I`d got a job and duly joined Whitco.My last ship was the Temple Bar who was attended after an incident by Cape Wrath.Last week some of my customers retturned from a walking holiday to Cape Wrath and I turn on my computer log onto SN and find this posting about Cape Wrath.I feel stalked!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,532 Posts
Mine was the Esso Durham in 1969, in which I was the J2/E. At the time, we were told, she was overdue a refit/scrapping/scuttling, and mechanically she was a mess. But there was the Biafran war going on in Nigeria, and it might be possible to get the last dregs of oil out of there before the whole place closed down.

Perhaps I am misjudging our owner, but it was tempting to believe that if our mighty vessel were lost it might save a few bob in refit or scrappage costs. Anyway, off to Nigeria where, on the way, everything that could go wrong did. Then arrival in Nigeria after several stops at sea, the usual call from the bridge to start the cargo pumps (all steam turbine pumps). I went down onto the cargo pump flat and started the first two, but opening the steam valve on #3 resulted in the Bibby coupling between the turbine and the pump disintegrating, causing the shafts to ride over each other and blowing the whole thing apart in a surge of superheated steam.

Fortunately the steam valve was isolated by the steam and exhaust pipes, so the blast of steam and whatever else missed me. Even so, the whole flat filled immediately with steam, and I had to crawl out on the deck plates until I found the ladder up to the control flat. Once there, and mouthing expletives that I didn't know I had memorised, the chief engineer greeted me. "F**k me Sec, we thought you were dead for sure!"

It's refreshing when your superior officers have such concern for oneself!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
Hi David,
Just spotted your response re the good ship Fajemirokun. Good to hear from you. I can well believe you, re the 4/E. Left us right in the wotsit. So much for Christmas in Rio!!

Can't recall the name of the Captain but tend to think it wasn't Kopec, given that the three of us who transferred from the Ifewara flew to London to meet up with the rest of the gang, before flying on to Lagos.

All the best.
Kevin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
183 Posts
British Centaur, brand new out of Belfast jan 66. Thank goodness I wasn't an engineer, over the 6 months I was on her they were kept busy on a regular basis with various problems.
Loading was a decidedly nervous operation at times as the pump system for the hydraulic bulkhead valves had a tendency to stop working just when you really needed it so the emergency hand pump had to be pressed into use. The inert gas system, a great idea, was also temperamental at times especially during discharge.
Not a great advert for a new ship and from comments in other threads it would appear things didn't get much better. She seems to have picked up a few votes in this thread too!
All the above apart though it was a lucky trip as I should have joined the Crown, but was sick so I missed it thank goodness, I only hope nobody took my place as it was at short notice.
Richard.
I was one of the 3/E's on the British Centaur when it left Belfast on it's maiden voyage. What rank were you ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
528 Posts
Did anyone else find that some of the harder-working ships had the best social life? Don't know if it is the work-hard, play-hard ethic, but people always seemed more determined to enjoy themselves on tougher ships.

One of the less enjoyable engine rooms I spent time in had Pielstick engines, which I hated, but I stayed for 7 trips as we had such a good time on board.
I often thought it was better to be on a bad ship with a good crowd than a good ship with a bad one. Of course it was nice when they were both good !
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
528 Posts
For sure. But it didn't need much more than one bad apple to make a voyage go sour.
Strangely enough when I was on the "Bibi" in 1970 the first round trip was like that. I have seldom met a more sullen group of officers.
At the end of that run a few of them paid-off and it was "party-time" after that Even "Big Jim" Nichol was filled with cheer! Time flew.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,284 Posts
I can't pretend to have known her. I was on Stonehaven between 72 and 75 but after school again I did two Texaco and one Conoco trips before returning to the fold in 1977 (albeit still Marconi until later). I was thinking more of my last trip on Crusader/CAST Fulmar one drunk 3/e took a lot of shine off (especially after two Team Ships) but even then it wasn't a trip totally devoid of fun.
 
321 - 340 of 372 Posts
Top