Friday Off

Day off meant…ships!

Tanker Aurora N:

Aurora N

Pi‘ilani assisting:

Pi‘ilani Aurora N

Kaiyo Maru was at Pier 9, getting ready to depart.

I like the traditional work done for the fenders of this boat:

traditional fender Kaiyo Maru

Use whatever does the job:

fenders Kaiyo Maru


A hui hou:

Kaiyo Maru

In the afternoon, I was able to go out on Pi‘ilani for the Gener8 Argus arrival.

This was a three tug job. With Mamo:

Mamo Gener8 Argus in distance

And Mikioi:


Humpback whale spotting while waiting:

humpback in distance

It’s always awesome to see these big girls up close!

Gener8 Argus

Hello to the crew!

saying hello Gener8 Argus crew

Need a new net! The backboard still has the ship’s former name on it:

need new net

Go propeller!

go propeller

Mahalo to Rick Wilson and Michael MacDonald. Special thanks to Captain
Deron Schade.


Mixed Emotions

Mirroring the weather—cloudy with rain then changing to sunshine then back to cloudy—yesterday was a day of mixed emotions.

I went to Pier 9 to get pics of the arrival of the Japan Coast Guard training ship Kojima.

Moana Holo on the move:

Moana Holo

Kojima approaching Pier 9:

Kojima arriving

Cadets standing at attention:

Kojima cadets standing at attention

Ready with a heaving line:

Kojima crew ready with heaving line

Fender ready:

fender ready

Attaching safety netting to the gangway:

safety netting on gangway

Pilot boat Honolulu arriving to pick up the pilot:


A glance over the harbor from Aloha Tower reveals the changes going on.

New location for Atlantis operations:

harbor changes Atlantis

Interesting ship of the day was the French cable laying ship, Ile de Sein.

Ile de Sein name

There was a fire on board the vessel a few days ago. She will remain in the harbor until repairs are made.

Detail of equipment on deck:

Ile de Sein detail

Ile de Sein by Aloha Tower:

Ile de Sein by Aloha Tower

A side note about the ship. She was involved in the effort to recover the flight data recorders from Air France flight 447. The aircraft went down in the Atlantic during a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. Unfortunately, there were no survivors.

More from gCaptain: Cable laying vessel “Ile De Sein” selected to recover Air France flight 447 data recorder

In terms of the mixed emotions…I’ll cover that in my next post.

Plans Go Awry

Despite a forecast of nasty weather (rain, strong wind), I decided to go to the harbor to catch the arrival of the tanker Valrossa.

rough weather

While waiting, I wandered along Pier 9.

Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth was at Pier 10/11.

Spray from the swells beating against her stern:

surge Queen Elizabeth

Mat protecting the hull of Hokuho Maru:

Hokuho Maru mat

Hoku Ke‘a:

Hoku Ke‘a

Honolulu taking the pilot out to Valrossa:

Honolulu headed out

I watched Falls of Clyde rolling at her berth at Pier 7.

Port side of the ship:

FOC port side swell

Sigh. Poor girl.

Large swell hitting the wall at the end of Pier 7:

wave makai side Pier 7

Valrossa was approaching the harbor, when I heard a loud “bang” from FOC. Oh-oh. That didn’t sound good. I hurried over to the ship.

Oh great. Problem with the gangway. Again.

FOC gangway problem

Although I haven’t had much to do with the ship (by choice) since I resigned from the organization, I notified the board members and waited until one of them showed up. I could have left then, but I stayed to help.* So much for photos of Valrossa.

The weather improved over the course of the afternoon. I was pleased to get some nice shots of Queen Elizabeth as she left the harbor.

Queen Elizabeth detail

Queen Elizabeth

Queen Elizabeth bow

Mikioi assisting:

Mikioi Queen Elizabeth

passenger silhouette

Blocky stern!

Queen Elizabeth stern

The Star of Honolulu and Navatek I were floating around in the harbor. I assume this was because it was too rough for them to do their normal off-shore dinner cruises?

Star of Honolulu:

Star of Honolulu

With Queen Elizabeth gone, Hokuho Maru was preparing to shift to Pier 10.

Getting ready to remove gangway:

Hokuho Maru gangway


Hokuho Maru fender

Pulling away from Pier 9:

Hokuho Maru pulling away from pier

*Big mahalo to Rick Wilson and the crew of Pi‘ilani (Captain Jeff Page, Chris Vincent, and Bruno Fonoti-Ulufale) for answering the call. You guys are awesome!

At Aloha Tower

I had some time to kill, so I went up to the 10th floor observation deck of Aloha Tower…a lonely sentinel in the midst of a maze of construction barricades.

What looks like a nice jacuzzi for two on A:

jacuzzi on A

(Nice job varnish job on the rail.)

Light Maui with some work being done at the stern:


There goes Honolulu:

Honolulu and sad pier

How long before that decaying corner of the pier falls in?

Back at ground level…the target of the day, Satsumaseiun Maru, along with Honolulu and Maui:

Satsumaseiun Maru Honolulu

Wild Thing (no pic) is still tied up right at the middle of Pier 9. A bit awkward.

Approaching the pier, the crew at their stations:

approaching pier

Getting a fender ready:

getting a fender ready

Love the traditional hitching.

Ready with a heaving line:

heaving line

Captain Anzai (no, I don’t know him, I just read his name tag) and pilot, Captain Tom Collins:

Captain Anzai and Captain Collins

Nice smile!

Captain Collins

Job done!

Captain Collins Honolulu

Passing by Robert C. Seamans, saw this fish tail at the end of the bowsprit:

fish tail

“Mini” Fender

I finished the “mini” fender I was working on for a friend. It evolved a little bit from the original design I had in my head.

mini fender

Unfortunately, it still isn’t thick enough (end of bolt sticks out).

Back to the drawing board I guess.


After the unwanted drama of the past two weekends, I was really relieved that today turned out to be quiet and uneventful.

It rained in the morning and was overcast for most of the day.

rain on deck

I decided to do some “sit down” work.

I was going to cut new stoppers, but found some lines that were already cut in useful lengths. All they needed were some whippings. Done.

Next on my list was putting together a “mini” fender to protect the side of a friend’s boat from rather a large and awkward bolt/nut combination that is sticking out of the concrete of the pier at her slip.

I knew this old stuff was good for something:

old line

Why buy something when you can make it with what you have on hand?

Cutting away the unwanted bits:

cutting line

Not too bad:

two pieces

All ready for seizing:

ready for seizing


seizing done

I also made a grommet that can be attached to the front of the fender. I’m not sure if it’s needed for additional protection, but I’ll make it up with canvas padding just in case.

On to bigger stuff…

The cause of last week’s hand wringing, one end of the spring line with part of the chain that failed:

spring line

Yup, I had noticed the wear on the links back in 2011. It was only a matter of time…

The other side by the bollard. The chain is not the same chain, but forms an eye that goes around the bollard. Scary but strangely artsy in a way (the combination of textures and colors):

scary but artsy

View of the bollard:

needs sorting


The bird wing was still on the deck but in a different location. Still no body. Very odd. I guess I should have picked it up and thrown it away. 😦 Wonder if it will still be there next week?

No interesting ships today.

Kokua turning Mauna Loa:

Kokua and Mauna Loa

Cargo Ships

I find cargo ships fascinating. I think it’s because of the variety of configurations they come in.

When I arrived at the harbor this morning, Nine Frontier was taking on fuel and getting ready to leave. She is a wood chip carrier.

Nine Frontier name

Instead of heading right over to FOC, I decided to wait in order to take some photos.

My favorite shot of the day! Nine Frontier crew member with rat guard:

Nine Frontier crew ratguard

A different sight on the pier:

dog with monkey fist

Playing fetch with a monkey fist (appropriate) until it was time for the ship to unmoor:

good boy


Pilot ladder and gangway:

Nine Frontier pilot ladder

Turning after leaving Pier 10/11:

Nine Frontier leaving Pier 10:11

Aomori Maru arrived at Pier 9 as Nine Frontier was leaving.

Crew members getting ready to place fenders between the ship and the pier:

placing fenders

Fender detail:

Aomori Maru fender

Unusual to see a Horizon Lines ship at this location:

Horizon Pacific

After getting my fill for the day of sanding and varnishing, I went with a friend for a late lunch/early dinner. We picked up some food and went to sit on one of the hillocks in Kaka‘ako Waterfront Park.

It was nice to see a number of humpback whales off shore:

thar she blows

(The white blot in the photo is a whale spouting.)

Some were in/near the harbor channel. I hope they don’t get hit by any of the ships arriving or departing the harbor.

A nice finish to a fairly good day: