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Shipping Wonders of the World

Part 46

Part 46 of Shipping Wonders of the World was published on Tuesday 22nd December 1936.

It included a centre photogravure supplement illustrating the industries along the River Clyde, which formed part of the article on Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre.

The Cover

The attractive cover this week shows the steel four-masted barque Parma in Barry Dock, near Cardiff. The Parma was built in 1902, and has a gross tonnage of 3,047. She ha a length of 327 ft 8 in, a beam of 46 ft 6 in and a depth of 26 ft 2 in. She was recently sold to become a coal hulk at Haifa, Palestine.

The four-masted barque "Parma"

Contents of Part 46

The Battle of Tsushima

Survey Ships at Work

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre (photogravure supplement)

China River and Coast Ship

Menace of Fire at Sea

Marine Measurements

HM Coastguard Service

Raising the Maine

The Russian Baltic Fleet by Norman Wilkinson

THE RUSSIAN BALTIC FLEET, in the centre foreground is the Kniaz Suvoroff, Vice-Admiral Rozhdestvenski’s flagship, sunk in the action. To the right are the Admiral Ushakoff (sunk), Zemtchug (escaped), Admiral Senyavin (captured), General Admiral Graf Apraxin (captured), Kamchatka (sunk), Irtish (sunk) and Svietlana (sunk). To the left of the Kniaz Suvoroff are the Alexander III (foundered), Admiral Nakhimoff (sunk), Dmitri Donskoy (sunk), Vladimir Monomakh (foundered), Borodino (sunk), Nicolai I (captured), and (on extreme left) the Orel (captured). The Orel  was a unit of the Russian Volunteer Fleet. In the battle of Tsushima the Japanese sank, disabled or captured eight battleships, nine cruisers, three coastal defence ships, nine torpedo craft, one auxiliary cruiser, six special service steamers and two hospital ships. The Japanese loss was three torpedo boats.

The illustration is from a drawing by Norman Wilkinson.

(Page 1445)

Survey Ships at Work

The safe navigation of ships in every corner of the Seven Seas depends mainly on the accurate and painstaking work of a handful of surveying vessels which collect information for the making of charts. This chapter by Lieut.-Comm. R. T. Gould describes the work of early surveyors, and the processes of modern surveying, tells of the growth of the Hydrographic Department of the Admiralty, and gives the strange and little-known story of the Avocet Rock in the Red Sea.

(Pages 1449-1454)

The Battle of Tsushima

The defeat of the Russian Baltic Fleet on May 27 1905, by the Japanese Fleet in the Strait of Tsushima, described by Lieut.-Commander E Keble Chatterton. This chapter is concluded from part 45 and is the sixth article in the series on Decisive Naval Actions.

(Pages 1445-1448)

The Birthplace of Many Famous Liners

THE BIRTHPLACE OF MANY FAMOUS LINERS. Opposite the mouth of the small River Cart (left) are John Brown and Company’s shipbuilding yards, on the north bank of the Clyde. In the foreground is the Rothesay Dock, which has a water area of 20½ acres. The width at the entrance is 200 feet and the quays have a total length of 6,134 feet.

(Page 1455)

China River and Coast Ship

Here is an unusual ship type particularly designed to operate on sections of the China Coast and on the Yangtze Kiang. She is the type of craft which can navigate certain sections of that river, concerning which a chapter starts on page 255. This twin-screw vessel was built and engined in 1921 by the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Company for the Indo-China Steam Navigation Company, Hongkong. She is named Kung Wo and is a ship of 4,636 tons gross, with a length of 350 feet, a beam moulded of 48 ft 6 in and a depth of 14 feet. She has a beam over fenders of

60 ft 9 in. This is an interesting dimension because heavy wooden fenders are fitted to the sides of the ship for protection while navigating in difficult waters. The Kung Wo is a single deck ship with two superstructure decks, the hatches themselves being on the main deck so that loading, except at No. 2 hatch, takes place through the side. There are three holds, two forward and one abaft the machinery space, with capacities of 42,900 cubic ft, 40,500 cubic ft and 56,000 cubic ft respectively. Numbers 1 and 2 holds have each their own hatch, and No. 3 has

two hatches. All these hatches except No. 2 are 18 feet square, No. 2 being 26 feet, in length.

The first superstructure deck is occupied with accommodation for European and Chinese passengers in first, second and third classes. There are also staterooms as well as a saloon on the top superstructure deck at the after end, the fore end being occupied by officers' quarters. Propulsion of this interesting ship is by two steam reciprocating engines taking steam at 190 lb per sq in pressure from three Scotch boilers. These burn coal which is carried in side bunkers. Ships of this kind are of a type not found anywhere else in the world, although somewhat similar ship types exist on the River Plate.

This is the thirty-sixth article in the series on Merchant Ship Types.

 (Page 1464)

The Surveying Vessel HMS Kellett

CONVERTED FROM A MINESWEEPER into a surveying vessel, HMS Kellett was built in 1919 at Renfrew, Scotland. A twin-screw vessel of 800 tons, she has an overall length of 231 feet, a beam of 28 ft 7 in and a draught of 7 ft 6 in. She is armed with one three-pounder and has a complement of eighty-eight. Her speed is 16 knots. The navies of the British Empire own in all twelve surveying ships.

(Page 1450)

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre

Along the banks of the River Clyde from Glasgow to Greenock are situated some of the biggest shipbuilding yards in the world. With the development of her shipping activities Glasgow has risen from a small town to the sixth largest city in the British Empire. Glasgow’s present eminence has been achieved through the energy and industry of her citizens during the last hundred years. To enable large vessels to reach Glasgow, every foot of the River Clyde has been dredges, down to Dumbarton, and the process of dredging has to be carried on ceaselessly to prevent the Clyde from silting up again. This chapter is by C. Hamilton Ellis and is the thirteenth article in the series on Great Ports of the World.

(Pages 1455-1463)

Menace of Fire at Sea

One of the most dreaded of all the dangers to which a ship at sea may be subjected is fire. Gradually, however, the imposition of stricter regulations and the application of many protective and preventive devices have almost eliminated the risk of a serious fire in a modern vessel. In the days of wooden warships, fire was the constant dread of sailors. So great was the fear of fire that smoking was prohibited anywhere but on the forecastle head. There the smokers had to gather round a big water-butt, over which they had to keep the bowls of their pipes. The regulation was strictly enforced, and the smokers were watched by a sentry who saw that they did not break the rule. Nowadays the means of preventing fires are so much improved, and with steel ships the risk is so much less, that regulations need not be so strict, except for tankers. Every care, however, is taken to prevent an outbreak of fire or, if one breaks out, to localize and overcome it. Here Frank Bowen contributes a chapter on fire at sea. He describes the modern precautions against outbreaks and tells of one or two historic instances of disasters through fire.

(Pages 1465-1469)

The Ares Ablaze

BLAZING FROM STEM TO STERN. A fierce fire was caused by the combustion of the cargo of saltpetre in the Ares at Lisbon, Portugal, in April 1931. Built at Zaandam, Holland, in 1921, the Ares was a vessel of 3,981 tons gross. She had a length of 340 feet, a beam of 48 feet and a depth of 28 ft 6 in.

(Page 1466)

Marine Measurements

Ships are so immense that comparisons are difficult except on certain common measurements. The principles on which the various tonnages and other standards of capacity or water displacement are clearly outlined in this review of the subject.

(Pages 1470-1471)

In Ballast

IN BALLAST. When a ship has no cargo on board her ballast tanks must be filled to enable her to be handled at sea. In this condition she is described as in ballast and the propeller is often partly visible. The Avala is shown thus, high in the water. Of 6,403 tons gross, she is a Jugoslavenksi Lloyd vessel with a length of 425 feet, a beam of 58 ft 3 in and a moulded depth of 31 ft 2 in.

(Page 1471)

HM Coastguard Service

The Coastguard Service was brought in 1922 under the control of the Board of Trade and reorganized into two divisions - the Coast Watching Force, concerned with life-saving and the salvage of wreckage, and the Coast Preventive Corps, concerned mainly with the prevention of smuggling. This chapter is by Vice-Admiral Gordon Campbell.

(Pages 1472-1474)

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre: Photogravure Supplement

SEEN FROM A MAMMOTH CRANE, the River Clyde has the appearance of a long narrow dock basin. In the distance is the Meadowside Granary, which has a storage capacity of 31,000 tons. Quays 1,616 feet in length surround the granary, and vessels drawing 34 feet of water can discharge alongside.

(Page 1459)

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre - 2

A RIVER CLYDE LAUNCH is generally made at an angle to the stream because of its narrowness. The launch of the Famaka from Alexander Stephen's yard at Govan in 1922 followed this procedure. This vessel is a steamer of 5,832 tons gross, built for the Khedivial Mail service in the Mediterranean. She was sold to Eastern Traders Ltd, and renamed Ormiston. She has  length of 390 ft 9 in, a beam of

55 ft  3 in and a depth of

28 ft 1 in and is registered at Melbourne, Australia.

(Page 1460)

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre - 3

HIGHWAY TO GLASGOW. From Renfrew to the docks at Glasgow and the Broomielaw, the River Clyde is lined with shipbuilding yards, quays, decks and wharves. Constant dredging keeps the channels deep enough for ocean-going ships. The Clyde was once a shallow swiftly-flowing salmon river, navigable by small boats only.

(Page 1461)

Scotland’s Premier Shipping Centre - 4

IN THE FITTING-OUT BASIN of John Brown and Company’s shipbuilding yard at Clydebank. Numbers of workmen are seen coming off duty from the Queen Mary during her fitting-out. Shipbuilding is the most important industry on the Clyde, and this famous yard is described in the chapter beginning on page 495. In June 1936 forty-two vessels were under construction at Greenock and Glasgow yards.


(Page 1462)

The Breeches Buoy in Action

THE BREECHES BUOY IN ACTION. A light line is fired over the vessel from a rocket apparatus and a hawser is thus hauled on board. The breeches buoy then brings the crew ashore one by one. This photograph was taken during the rescue of twenty Italian seamen from their ship, the Nimbo, which had gone on the rocks between Newhaven and Brighton, Sussex.

(Page 1473)

Raising the Maine

A mysterious explosion sent the United States battleship Maine to the bottom of Havana Harbour, Cuba, on February 15, 1898. Fourteen years later the battleship was refloated after extensive salvage operations. Contrary to expectations, the cause of the explosion was not definitely ascertained. In this chapter David Masters tells the story of the American warship which was raised in spite of almost insuperable difficulties. This is the ninth article in the series Dramas of Salvage and is concluded in part 47.

(Pages 1475-1476)

The Starboard Side of the Maine

THE STARBOARD SIDE of the Maine and part of the superstructure as it was revealed on June 21, 1911, after the water in the coffer-dam had been pumped out. The after part of the hull was encrusted with sea-growth; the interior was deep in mud. All the woodwork had been eaten away by the boring worms which infest the sea.

(Page 1476)

The Russian Baltic Fleet by Norman WilkinsonThe Surveying Vessel HMS KellettThe River Clyde - The Birthplace of Many Famous LinersThe River Clyde seen from a mammoth craneThe launch of the "Famaka" at Govan, 1922The River ClydeThe "Queen Mary" during her fitting-outThe "Kung Wo"The "Ares" AblazeDraught marks on a shipThe "Avala" in ballastThe Breeches Buoy in ActionThe Starboard Side of the "Maine"

Draught Marks

DRAUGHT MARKS, cut into the steel at stem and stern, show, in feet, the draught of a ship at any given time. Thus the loading of a ship can be checked fore and after and the approximate weight of cargo calculated. Above are the stern draught marks of the Berengaria, 52,101 tons gross, photographed when her rudder was being refitted at Southampton after it had been repaired at Darlington.


(Page 1471)