Light, Shade, and Ghosts

After the horizon gazing of yesterday, I spent time today looking inward.

As part of my regular inspection routine, I usually check the aft- and forepeak areas and the pump room. Confession time…I’ve been lazy and have neglected the forepeak and pump room for a while. Bad, really, as they should be checked every week for any changes. There’s no excuse for not doing it, as it just involves opening the forward hatch cover or connecting an extension cord from the outlet in the boiler room to the string of lights in the area above the pump room to provide light.

The string of lights illuminates the tween deck level and forepeak, but not the pump room. The hatch provides general illumination on the tween deck level and down into the pump room, but the forepeak is usually pitch black and requires a flashlight to see anything.

I chose the hatch option today and got a surprise when I went below.

bow ports

Normally hidden and unnoticed in the dark, the upper bow ports were lit by the sunlight that was streaming down through the hatch and was being reflected forward by the bulkhead separating the upper pump room area from the boiler room. It was a Newgrange moment!

Here is a shot of the entire area taken later on in the day for comparison:

forward part of tween deck

The bow ports are back in shadow again.

More details.

Deck (needs sweeping):


I can’t remember if I’ve posted about this before, but these marks are something Brush noticed during the last survey:

marks on plate

So far, they’ve only been found on plates along one particular strake on the starboard side. No idea what they mean, if anything.

I figure I should mention the ghost(s). Oooooooo. Some time ago, I was talking to someone who had volunteered on board in the past and he told me of spooky things (voices, touch) he and someone else had experienced while working in this area at night.

At one point, some people scouting locations for a ghost hunter program visited the ship. Oddly enough, from what I understand, they said they picked up voices in the same area. Oooooooo.

I also heard that ice used to be kept in the forepeak during the ship’s sailing days and sometimes bodies would be stored there. Now, I’m not so sure about that. I guess a body could be kept, if it was someone really important. Otherwise, why not just a burial at sea?

I have had a couple of strange experiences, but they are things I can explain away. The ship has a very light and benign air…at least during the day. I’m a chicken when it comes to the dark, so I don’t think I’ll be spending any time here alone at night.

Leaving the pump room area, a valve handle on the boiler room side of the bulkhead:

valve handle

I hadn’t noticed the black mark above the handle before. Caused by steam escaping a long time ago?

I made up a new ullage form, which I think works quite well:

new ullage form

Oops, I wrote down the wrong date.

Some life at Aloha Tower Marketplace!

Challenge Nation participants

It turns out that it was the people who had participated in the Challenge Nation urban scavenger race. Looks like fun!


How Time Flies…

It’s hard to believe that a week has gone by since the start of the photographic hull survey. The work has been hot and tiring, but fun and quite interesting. I’ve learned quite a bit as well.

Anyway, here are some photos of what’s been happening on board the ship!

We were fortunate to have welding and riveting expert Vern Mesler stop by.

Vern and Chris Jannini looking at rivets at the stern of the ship:

Vern and Chris looking at rivets

Vern and his wife Nan Jackson examine the aftpeak area:

Nan and Vern aftpeak

Chris was right! The lower part of the jigger mast is wood. Curious!

lower part of jigger

Numbers and letters (big mahalo to Alvin) for labeling frames and strakes:

numbers and letters

Strainer design:

strainer suction line

Volunteers in safety gear in lazarette:

volunteers safety gear

Mossend stamp:

Mossend stamp knee

Robert Jamieson and volunteers dealing with a hose connected to one of the submersible pumps:

dealing with hose

Geologic features in a ship! Ripple marks in the sediment in the aftpeak:

ripple marks

Dr. Lloyd Hihara from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa/Hawaii Corrosion Lab visited the ship. Chris, Dr. Hihara, and Vern looking at the hull:

discussing corrosion

Some of Robert Jamieson’s wonderful drawings of the ship:


More work on the pumping system:

suction work

Chris in the forepeak:

Chris forepeak

Hole in the collision bulkhead leading to the chain locker:

hole in bulkhead

The lower set of bow ports:

lower bow ports

I was very glad that I had the opportunity to climb down into the forepeak to have a closer look at the condition of the hull there.

Hole in the bulkhead between the pump room and port tank #1:

hole in OT bulkhead

Chris labeling the frames and strakes in the pump room:

labeling pump room

Finally, a couple of photos taken this morning to remind me that there is a bright world beyond the rusty hull…

I was surprised and delighted to see dolphins in the harbor! Unfortunately, the photo isn’t very good because they had gone past the ship by the time I got my camera. You can just make them out in the area between the coconut tree trunks and the building.


Perched on one of the lines on the ship, a young sparrow begging for food from its mother:

young sparrow and mother

More Photos of Timber Being Loaded Through Bow Ports

A previous post featured a photo taken by William Notman of men loading lumber through the bow ports of a ship. Here are more photos of the same ship from the McCord Musuem collection.

Photograph | Loading ship with square timber through the bow port, Quebec City, QC, 1872 | I-76320

Photograph | Loading ship with deals through the bow port, Quebec City, QC, 1872 | I-76324

Photograph | Loading ship with deals through the bow port, Quebec City, QC, 1872 | I-76323

The photos are linked back to the McCord Museum website where you can find out more information as well as see a larger version (click on “Download this image” link below photo) or zoom in to a specific area.

Photos and info about Falls of Clyde’s bow ports:

Bulkhead Ports
Lower Bow Ports – Exterior
Upper Bow Ports – Interior

Loading ship with square timber through the bow port, Quebec City, QC, 1872

This is an interesting photo. Like FOC, this ship has bow ports for loading timber.

Last Post of 2011

I tried to think of a more clever title for this post…er…

Anyway, one couldn’t ask for a better day for the last day of the year.

Here’s Aloha Tower looking lovely in the morning light:

Aloha Tower morning light

Ignore what the clock says. It’s not working at the moment.

Not the best photo, but I rather like it. My footprints in the dew on the deck:


Looking like an abstract painting, the reflection of the Aloha Tower Marketplace buildings in the water by Pier 8:

reflection in water

It may seem like all I did on the ship today was take pictures. I did do some work! Most of it was cleaning, as I felt the old girl needed a bit of sprucing up. I also did some rust busting. The black areas were treated with rust converter:

rust converter

rust converter corner

Some ship details.

Port bow port:

detail upper bow ports

A valve…or a metal flower?

valve with tank

View of the street just mauka (toward the mountains) of Aloha Tower:

big bash sign

As the banner says, there is going to be a big party at the Marketplace this evening. I will be on the ship, away from the crazy crowd, enjoying the fireworks.

I wish everyone a Happy New Year!

tugs in a row

Learning New Things

I had the chance to look around in the pump room again. The previous visit had raised some questions.

I was curious about how lumber was loaded through the lower bow ports given their position and the location of the chain locker just aft of the collision bulkhead. It turns out there are corresponding ports in the bulkhead that are covered by removable plates. These are located just above the chain locker.

removable plates

The bulkhead ports (without plates) for the upper bow ports can be seen in this photo taken on the tween deck.

ports in bulkhead

Being able to explore and study the ship is the greatest reward for all the hard work.

Unfortunately, some things aren’t pretty and some are downright scary.

scary area in plate

Here are more rat guards and chafing gear.

From the Chishio Maru:

Chishio Maru chafing gear

Chishio Maru rat guard

And from the Shinkai Maru:

Shinkai Maru chafing gear

Shinkai Maru rat guard

I must say that the red and white pattern of the chafing gear gives the lines a unique look.

Side Ports


Detail from [Kalama] (Washington State Historical Society)

Ever since I read the description of the launch of the Falls of Bruar, I have been wondering if the Falls of Clyde had side ports as well. If they existed, they would have been sealed up when she was converted into a tanker.

The bow ports are easy to find, if you know where to look.

lower bow ports

I had a look at the starboard side of the ship and found the following features in the hull:

side port 1

side port 2

Former side ports? Yes?