Winter ship rituals

January 21, 2015

Ocean Intrepid breaks ice, preparing for the arrival of Oceanex Avalon in Montreal As most know, the winters in Canada can be somewhat challenging. In the Great Lakes area, the winter of 2013-2014 was particularly good example of that statement, with record ice covering all of the Great Lakes and their inter-connecting rivers, well past the normal “ice season”. Some ships on Lake Superior even experienced breaking ice in late…

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Davie is Goliath – for now

August 17, 2014

Davie’s recently launched Cecon Pride The past twist and turns, ups and downs, of Davie Shipyard in Quebec City are legendary and certainly worthy of its own book. However, the yard is actually on what appears to be, quite a rebound.  The yard, established 192 years ago, was re-launch in 2012 after a tumultuous decade of financial woes. The revival is steered by a new management team supplied by European…

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Canada’s register to add two crude tankers

June 29, 2014

MV Palva in Montreal, now owned by Transport Maritime St Laurent I’m back in Quebec, passing through Quebec City, on our way to Oswego, with a load of Aluminum ingots from the smelter in Sept Iles, bound for Mitsubishi. As we pass my “old stomping grounds” in Quebec City I see no signs of Valero’s “new” Panamax tankers. Apparently the whole deal and its details are quite hush, hush, but…

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Zed is dead!

December 18, 2013

Third tug, third drydock, third contract After many years on “conventional” shaft and propeller powered vessels, I am quickly coming to appreciate the complexity of Z drives, right angle drives, or whatever these are called in your neck of the ocean. With three dry-docking in three contracts, on three different boats, in one year, I am getting some familiarization with these complex machines. My latest adventure involves a Kawasaki Rexpeller…

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O NSPS, NSPS! wherefore art thou NSPS?

November 28, 2013

I was asked recently to make a comment in a forum between two seasoned mariners, now working ashore in senior level positions. Of course there is no way I want to be in between two sailors looking for “blood”, but it did make me think about expressing my thoughts on the federal government’s National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, aka the NSPS, that have been tumbling around in the old vacuous cranium…

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The “Borg” ship in the bay of deception

October 28, 2013

Wartsila 8L46, Arneborg Power plant Apologies for the misleading post title goes out to the ST:TNG crowd… cool title though, eh! We are drawing to a close, ship loading operations up here in Deception Bay, on the northernmost tip of the province of Quebec. Wagenborg’s Arneborg is the second ship to load ore, from the new nickel mine operated by Nunavut Nickel and Canadian Royalties. With 6 lifts of bagged…

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Breeze from across the pond

March 14, 2013

Vancouver’s Translink MV Burrard Pacific Breeze, built 2009, image from BMT Shipyards in BC are again being passed over in another planned government funded new build. Translink, the regional Vancouver public transit authority, has sourced Damen Shipyard in the Netherlands, to build a new Seabus replacement vessel. The venerable Burrard Beaver as been in service since its launch in 1976, working alongside its sister ship Burrard Otter, ferrying passengers from…

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NSPS: where are you?

March 1, 2013

From Interwebs The much heralded National Ship Procurement Strategy’s (NSPS) wheel of progress have been mired in thick mud, seemingly unable to gain any real traction when it comes to actually cutting steel. Today, yet another blow to the program, a report by the Parliamentary Budget Officer says that the $2.6 billion (yes, with a B), committed to the Joint Support Vessels in 2010 is simply not enough to build…

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