Author Topic: What are they doing?  (Read 4493 times)

Helen J

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What are they doing?
« on: November 06, 2012, 09:41:28 pm »
OK, so Pioneer has finally set off, and I realise I'm entirely ignorant of what they're actually doing.  Just had this entry - can anyone enlighten me?

Stopped for sounding 4A 2401 fathoms Lt Gy M. 3 water and 1 bottom specimen preserved.

I'm assuming they're dredging up something (and this explains why they took delivery of a large number of specimen tubes not long before leaving - having had all the problems with typhoid suspects, I'd rather assumed they were medical ....) - but what and what would they be doing it for?

http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USCS%20Pioneer/Book%202%20-%20July-October,%201922/IMG_7956_1.jpg

Janet Jaguar

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2012, 10:28:05 pm »
Pioneer is a US Coast and Geodetic Survey Ship.  See http://www.history.noaa.gov/ships/pioneer1.html

These ships want to know everything about the shape of the coast, and the shape, depth and composition of the sea floor, and the state of currents in the area in order to make charts for safe navigation.

Charts produced by these ships can be seen at http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/csdl/ctp/abstract.htm

studentforever

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2012, 07:56:57 am »
In our RN logs the ships will quite often record the 'bottom' e.g. sand, mud etc.  If you read Hornblower they had blobs of soft tallow on the lead sounding weight so that they could bring up samples of the 'bottom'.  Surveying ships would be interested in salinity as well as the small organisms in the water, some of these have shells and so are easy to preserve and identify.  These organisms affect economically interesting things such as fisheries as well as general ecology and so are very much grist to the surveying mill.

Helen J

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2012, 11:34:18 am »
Thank you both - I knew she was a Survey ship, but I suppose I'd thought of that as surveying the coast, islands - solid stuff which you needed to know about so as not to bump into it, to put it crudely!  But I can see now that you need to know more than that to make proper useful charts.
And thanks Janet for the useful link to the end products - another way to while away the odd hour!

Dean

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2013, 05:00:35 pm »
 I figured this might be the best place to post:

I'm on HMS Devonshire and The Logkeeper continually refers to 'drawing fires' in Steam pinnace and/ or Picket boat.

http://s3.amazonaws.com/oldweather/ADM53-39744/ADM%2053-39744-008_1.jpg

I know what they are doing but would like to add a reference or something for those that don't. So far all my research has led me to how to take a pencil and draw a fire (flame!)  :P  Has anyone found a good reference or have a good 'referenced' explanation I can use?

Thanks. :)

studentforever

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2013, 05:50:38 pm »
I see what you mean, nothing sensible on Google, Shorter Oxford & freedictionary don't give a helpful definitions either.  Good luck

Randi

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2013, 06:35:23 pm »
Best I found so far: http://chestofbooks.com/home-improvement/Household-Companion/Practical-Mechanics/How-to-Care-for-Boilers.html#.UQVzMWcZ7jI
Quote
7.    In case of low water immediately cover the fire with ashes (wet if possible) or any earth that may be at hand. If nothing else is handy use fresh coal. Draw fires as soon as it can be done without increasing the heat. Neither turn on the feed, start or stop engine, or lift safety-valve until fires are out and the boiler cooled down.

Read more: http://chestofbooks.com/home-improvement/Household-Companion/Practical-Mechanics/How-to-Care-for-Boilers.html#.UQVzMWcZ7jI#ixzz2JCbfYIz6

Searching for "draw fires" boiler gave lots of examples, but no definition that I could find :P
« Last Edit: January 27, 2013, 07:02:47 pm by Randi »

Janet Jaguar

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2013, 07:07:36 pm »
The best I can find on handling steam ships is in the Text-Book of Seamanship, 1891, written for US Naval Academy cadets (in Helpful Links.)  But those are American terms, which matters on this.  They "light" or "spread" their fires in the morning and "haul" or "bank" their fires at night.

This is the chapter involved:
http://www.hnsa.org/doc/luce/part10.htm#pg537

The other dictionaries covering the sail-steam transition period don't even mention boiler fires.  I'll keep looking.  So far, Randi's is the best

Randi

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2013, 07:51:49 pm »
Lots of "draw fires" references lead to the Titanic investigations.
e.g., http://www.titanicinquiry.org/BOTInq/BOTInq05Dillon01.php



Sort of a definition: http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=2378037 search for draw
Multiple references.
Best is probably
Quote
"Draw or pull<a fire> is a set phrase in boiler operation, but it means just about what it says. You actually draw or pull the burning bits of coal from under the boilers to let them cool down (in this case to prevent an explosion when cold water comes in contact with the boilers). Cold water hitting the burning coals could cause an explosion of steam, but it would not be nearly as violent as the failure of a boiler. The one might kill some people, the other would tear the ship in half. The difference is between steam at near-atmospheric pressure, and super-critical water and steam as found inside hot boilers. Note that the hot coals would still be on the boiler-room floor, but they are not worried about that, just about getting the boilers down to 212F (100C) or below.



http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=27&dat=19030118&id=Qa8mAAAAIBAJ&sjid=oTQDAAAAIBAJ&pg=5034,2165072 ;D

« Last Edit: January 27, 2013, 08:08:11 pm by Randi »

Dean

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2013, 08:08:32 pm »
Thanks folks!  I tried 'banking' a fire and ended up with all sorts of Bank fires!!

I think unless I find something 'better' I'll add to the beginning of the Log the statement:  Drawing a fire is actually nothing more than the name implies. To draw a fire means to lessen the 'raw fuel' and mound the coals. If the coals from the fire are protected well enough, there usually will be enough heat in them to easily start a fresh fire in the morning.  :P

Randi

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2013, 11:08:28 am »
I added
Quote
"Draw or pull<a fire> is a set phrase in boiler operation, but it means just about what it says. You actually draw or pull the burning bits of coal from under the boilers to let them cool down (in this case to prevent an explosion when cold water comes in contact with the boilers). Cold water hitting the burning coals could cause an explosion of steam, but it would not be nearly as violent as the failure of a boiler. The one might kill some people, the other would tear the ship in half. The difference is between steam at near-atmospheric pressure, and super-critical water and steam as found inside hot boilers. Note that the hot coals would still be on the boiler-room floor, but they are not worried about that, just about getting the boilers down to 212F (100C) or below.
to the OWpedia ;)

Dean

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2013, 09:14:53 pm »
Randi:

This from Dorbel In EO Handwriting Help:

I don't think that this right Dean. To bank the fire on a steam engine, you rake out all the ash and build a pile of the remaining coals at the back of the firebox. Then you put fresh coal at the front. Then in the morning everything should still be warm enough to get it all going again and raise steam quickly. To draw the fire is to remove everything, which you would do if you didn't intend to use the engine the next day. A steam pinnace alongside a warship will have her fires banked overnight and drawn when she is no longer required for duty and is to be hoisted in.

And my Reply:

Paul;  I'd go with your explanation as it makes PERFECT sense - EXCEPT - these guys 'draw the fires' just about EVERY NIGHT in 2 boats and 'Light' them every morning! Seems like a lot of work!   They DO mention a 'hoist' every now and then. It would make sense to 'kill the fires' when they hoist on board but most nights there is no mention of a hoist - just a draw.  TARDIS anyone??!!

I think I'll add your 'To draw...' sentences to the front of the Log and see if anything else develops.

thanks!!
______________________________________________________


I guess there is more research to be done!


Randi

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2013, 09:55:53 pm »
Thanks, I had already added dorbel's comment to OWpedia.



They may simply not always mention hoisting in :-\
or
They may prefer to be very careful with fires - perhaps there is no one in these 'baby' boats to keep an eye on the fire ;)

Janet Jaguar

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2013, 02:15:23 am »
copy from EO Help:
They also typically "light" their fires in the early hours - it assumes that must be done 1.5 to 3 hours ahead of anyone using the boats.  I don't think they'd need  that much time if they were just "spreading" carefully banked coals.
http://s3.amazonaws.com/oldweather/ADM53-39744/ADM%2053-39744-008_1.jpg

Kevin

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Re: What are they doing?
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2013, 05:32:44 am »
Thank you both - I knew she was a Survey ship, but I suppose I'd thought of that as surveying the coast, islands - solid stuff which you needed to know about so as not to bump into it, to put it crudely!  But I can see now that you need to know more than that to make proper useful charts.
And thanks Janet for the useful link to the end products - another way to while away the odd hour!

Not that anyone would anchor in 2000 fathoms, but it is handy to know what the bottom is like (good holding or foul).