Of Tankers…

Some months ago, I learned that Carolina Salguero, Founder and Director of PortSide NewYork, was going to be in Honolulu. I admire the work she has done related to the historic tanker, Mary A. Whalen, so I was looking forward to meeting her.

The day finally arrived (yesterday). It was a pleasure to get to know her beyond Facebook and to talk (quite frankly) about the challenges our respective ships face.

I am very grateful to Captain Tom Heberle of the Hawaii Pilots Association for giving the green light to a tour of Honolulu Harbor for Carolina. Paul volunteered to be tour guide and did an absolutely fab job.

More views of A:

closeup of A

A on A

(For some strange reason, I didn’t take very many photos…this post will be wordier than usual.)

Golden Bear rat guards:

Golden Bear rat guards

There were a lot of interesting comments from Carolina on the differences between our harbors.

Mahalo to Friends of Falls of Clyde’s president, Bruce McEwan, for a nice dinner. I think there was food for thought provided as well.

The coup for me, was arranging for us to spend the night aboard the ship. Another friend of mine had wanted to do the same thing a couple of years ago, but the idea had been squashed. (Sorry, Matt! Next time.) I was still a bit worried that word would get out and we’d be forced to call it off.

I was also worried that some weird person(s) would be hanging about the pier. Happily, it turned out to be a quiet, uneventful night.

I slept in the bunk in the cabin that I use as my office. It was perfect for someone my size. I can’t see how it could be comfortable for a tall/large person. I guess when you’re tired after standing watch in rough weather, any bunk will do.

There are large “B-52″ roaches on board. I saw them scuttling about on the deck, but fortunately, they left me alone. I hope.

As usual, the ship was warm and humid. There was no need for a blanket at all, even with both portholes open. In fact, I found myself wishing I had a small fan.

The only thing that bothered me was the steady “plop” of water into buckets when it started to rain before dawn. The sound woke me up and it was hard to fall asleep again.

All in all a great experience. I’d definitely like to do it again.

Sunday in the Park

There’s a small public park by Piers 5 and 6. I chose it as the location for my Sunday ship spotting.

I had some time to kill due to a change in the shipping schedule, so I stopped by FOC first. I did a little bit of maintenance and picked up some spare line for a small project:

line for small project

New project:

small project

No, I’m not doing anything to the silly gangway…just fixing the sign on the platform.

First ship of the day, Marguerite Ace:

Marguerite Ace

frame 133 and tug

Marguerite Ace crew

I wasn’t going to stick around for the arrival of Overseas Anacortes (already have pics of her), but I found enough things to amuse me and it was a nice day.

They fixed one range marker. I think it’s time to attend to the other one on Pier 7:

range marker Pier 7

A lot of sea grapes means more bird gifts on FOC:

sea grapes

Speaking of birds, here’s a cute zebra dove couple preening:

cute dove couple

Another zebra dove with a twig:

dove with twig

‘A‘ama:

crab

Copies of this notice were attached to a couple of the trees by Pier 5:

don't feed the seals

It would be pretty cool to see a monk seal by FOC.

On the on the other side of the same coconut tree, a bunch of trophies:

trophies

The elongated skull at the top is interesting. It looks like it’s from a large trumpetfish.

Busy tugs (Nokea, Mary Catherine, Kokua):

Nokea

Mary Catherine

Kokua

Mikioi with Overseas Anacortes passing by:

Mikioi with Overseas Anacortes

Overseas Anacortes turning:

Overseas Anacortes

Before I left the harbor, I went to Pier 11 to have another look at Polar Star.

Rat guard!

Polar Star rat guard

More Ship Spotting

More time on the pilot boat!

On the way out of the harbor, the Coast Guard working on a buoy:

Coast Guard working on buoy

Captain Ed Enos getting ready to go aboard Coral Bay:

Capt Enos Coral Bay

Pi‘ilani:

Pi‘ilani

Mikioi:

Mikioi

Mega yacht Vava II

Vava II

(Just a small fraction of what it cost to build this yacht would be nice to help FOC.)

Jean Anne

Jean Anne

Coral Bay at the pier:

Coral Bay

Coral Bay rat guards:

Coral Bay rat guards

Hachinohe Maru, a wood chip ship:

Hachinohe Maru

Thanks to Captain Ed Enos!

Pump Progress

More progress on the pump system this week.

On Tuesday, I got out of work early. I travelled into town, ate lunch, and then went down to the harbor to check on the ship.

I found two ladies looking at the ship from the gate area. I had a nice chat with them and gave them a quick tour.

Paul was on board working to get more of the PVC set up for the emergency discharge line (which, hopefully, will never be used). After the ladies left, I did what I could to help him. Trying to do stuff like this in office attire is no fun.

emergency discharge

Yesterday (Saturday), we did more work on the emergency discharge line. It involved going down into one of the tanks. Shhhhhh! Fortunately, the set-up drill was a familiar one, having been into the tanks myself.

starboard tank 4 set up

The newest member of the FOC Tank Club:

into the tank

Work on the weather deck:

connecting more PVC

Out through a scupper:

pipe on weather deck

(Yes, the deck needs a good cleaning. It’s on my list.)

View from the pier:

view of pipe from pier

After we were done for the day, I did my usual stroll around Aloha Tower.

Nippon Maru’s masts visible in the distance:

Nippon Maru masts

I went to the Aloha Tower sundry store to get something to drink. Most of the remaining shops are being pushed out by the HPU dorm project. I asked the lady behind the counter about their status. Unfortunately, she said that they had to leave too. That makes me unhappy.

She did say that there are plans for a merchant area, so they may be back. I hope so.

Pacific Venus rat guards:

Pacific Venus rat guards

Pacific Venus at Pier 10:

Pacific Venus

Marine creature sticker art:

sea creature sticker

Pirate Toby jug in a window downtown:

pirate Toby jug

Maintenance with a Twist

Saturday was a quiet day. I like quiet days. I can think about things while doing stuff on the ship.

Based on the severity of the thunderstorm and accompanying rain that hit the island on the previous Sunday, I had expected that I would be lugging around a lot of full rain buckets. To my delight, I found that most of them were empty. (Another board member beat me to it.)

I did find a few with water in them. The one in the lazarette had the most:

water bucket

Before leaving the area, I took a self-portrait:

in the lazarette

Not sure why…I usually try to avoid cameras. Just amusing myself, I guess.

On deck, there were a few new things to deal with.

I found a rock on the starboard side near the ladder up to the poop deck. I don’t remember seeing it there before, so someone must have thrown it aboard recently. It wasn’t a very happy rock, as it had split into two pieces. The smaller piece was a few feet away.

rock on deck

The weed that was growing on the fo’c’sle head was bothering me, so I tried to remove it. It was too tough to pull out, so I just cut it. It will sprout up again, no doubt. The one in the fo’c’sle was easier to handle.

weeds from deck

Another day, a new set of measurements. Six points this time—three on each side of the ship.

While looking for good locations to take the measurements from, I noticed that the electrical cable supplying power to the ship, was getting a little chafed where it crossed the top of the bulwark. Note to self: Work on chafing gear if Paul approves.

The view from the fo’c’sle head is great. I saw a bunch of police cars and officers:

HPD

My first thought was that they were filming an episode of Hawaii Five-O (they’ve filmed in the area before), but they were the real deal. I don’t know what was going on.

After the police left, I was sitting on the anchor, minding my own business and contemplating life, when I saw a gentleman and a very young girl feeding fish. What’s wrong with that you ask? They were standing in a rather dangerous area between a set of the ship’s mooring lines and a metal barricade (visible in the photo above). There are barricades there for a reason.

I got a chance to use my hailing voice (ha!) and politely asked them not to stand there.

Here’s another view:

don't stand here

They were standing just to the left of the lines, at the edge of the concrete. It wasn’t a rough day, so the lines weren’t moving a whole lot. Still…

The rest of the day was uneventful.

Shonan Maru’s chafing gear and rat guards:

Shonan Maru chafing gear

Shonan Maru chafing gear bollard

Shonan Maru rat guards

Manoa turning in front of Aloha Tower:

Manoa

Grim Discovery on the Pier

A pleasant day at the harbor except for a rather grim discovery.

I was looking at the larger lines stored on the pier. Some of the ends aren’t whipped, so they aren’t in the best condition.

worn end of line

(If you’re squeamish, stop reading now.)

I saw something that looked superficially like the image above. Upon closer inspection, I noticed some bones.

fur and bones

It turned out to be the remains of a cat.

close up of skull

I’ve never seen any cats wandering around in the area, so it’s rather strange. In a previous post, I mentioned the bait stations that have been set out around the pier to kill rats. I wonder if this poor cat’s death was a result of catching/eating a poisoned mouse or rat?

Anyway, I’m just glad it was on the pier and not on the ship.

***

A couple of random photos…

Looking aft along hull:

hull

Old wire seizing:

old wire seizing

The door leading to the aft cabins has been missing a proper handle for a long time. Up to now, there was just some thin line looped through the hole where a handle should be:

old handle

It worked, but seemed a bit ghetto. I thought I could make something super simple that would look a little better.

splice beginning

splice

new handle

In the harbor…

Sider Colombia arriving:

Sider Colombia

A better photo, than one I posted earlier this month, of Mikioi with the Foss logo:

Mikioi Foss logo

And Pi‘ilani, also with the Foss logo:

Pi‘ilani Foss logo

Veendam rat guard:

Veendam rat guard

Short Day

I didn’t stay too long on the ship today. I left after doing some general maintenance.

I noticed that one of Kashima Maru’s boats, Kaiyou, had eyes painted on the bow:

Kaiyou with eyes

Kashima Maru rat guards:

Kashima Maru rat guards

Grand Princess rat guards:

Grand Princess rat guards

A different type of rat guard, also on Grand Princess, with a figure of a cat:

Grand Princess cat rat guard

I decided to take a walk up Nu‘uanu Avenue.

A plaque outside Murphy’s Bar and Grill with the history of the building/immediate area:

Royal Saloon plaque

Duck siesta on a rock in Nu‘uanu Stream:

duck siesta

Wading dove:

wading dove

Frustration

The day started off with rain, which was fine because I had planned to do work on the tween deck.

When it rains, I always check to see where the leaks are and place buckets where needed.

dark water in bucket

During a break in the rain, I did my walk around the ship.

I was sad to see that the varnish needs tending to and I guess we (I) also have to do some weeding:

weed needs work

All seemed well, so I went below to start on my project for the day.

The patient (or victim):

the patient

Last year, during the photo survey project, we had trouble with one of the submersible pumps…don’t know if it was this one or its twin. I watched Brush open it up, clean it, and get it working again. He stressed being able to take things apart and do basic troubleshooting.

Okay, I think I can do this.

First thing I noticed, there was a crack in the power cord cover, which exposed the wiring within. Worrying. I taped it up with electrical tape for the time being.

I moved the pump on to a workbench, so I could get a better look at the bottom.

bottom of pump

Hm. Need socket wrench to loosen the bolts. No problem. We have a bunch, right?

lots of sockets but not the one needed

To my chagrin, the sockets were all too large. I found a T-handle wrench, but it was too small. Argh!

Well, so much for taking apart the pump. I dawdled about for a bit, then decided to leave.

Seems there’s a rat problem on the pier. Here’s one of the rat bait stations that have appeared:

rat control

Experimenting with an app:

experimenting with app

The research vessel Falkor, was at Pier 9:

Falkor

One of Falkor’s rat guards:

Falkor rat guard

First time I’ve seen a QR code on a ship:

QR code

Celebrity Millennium’s rat guards:

Celebrity Millennium rat guards 1

Celebrity Millennium rat guards 2

Noticed this sign at Pier 10/11, which I think is fairly new:

new sign

Tires at Pier 13:

tires

Once I got home, I checked a socket wrench set that belonged to my dad. I think this will do the trick:

this set will do

New Toy, Old Grind

It was back to the harbor on Saturday.

Before I went to the ship, I stopped to have a look at the tanker Suez Rajan. While I can see the tankers from my house when they are out at the offshore anchorage, it’s always neat to see them up close.

Empire Navigation logo:

Empire Navigation logo at bow

Draft and bulkhead marks:

draft marks

Rat guard:

Suez Rajan rat guard

It was a hot and humid day, so I decided to do some sweeping in the shade of the fo’c’sle:

image

That photo and the following were taken with my fancy new phone. :)

image

A friend came by to help out with measurements for the mooring line project. I need to get going on that.

Another examination of the stuff encrusting the draft mark pole, now dry but still smelly, produced a couple of surprises: Shrimp casualties!

shrimp casualties

On the left is a mantis shrimp and on the right is a snapping shrimp. College ruled note paper for scale.