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Re: Olympic


Sadly after her accident in 1934, Cunard White Star, decided she was no longer profitable. emoticon

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wills Profile
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Re: Olympic


yes you must be talking about the collision with the nantuckett lightboat in heavy fog.
yeah i have heard that. i also heard that her wiring was badly outdated and it was gonna cost way too much to fix her and get her up to code. that as well was another contributing factor to her selling.
wills

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Mark Chirnside Profile
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Re: Olympic


Hi!

A few comments from me:

quote:

Sadly after her accident in 1934, Cunard White Star, decided she was no longer profitable.



If I may, I think that's a little misleading as a statement. None of Olympic's contemporaries were making a profit, and Olympic -- to her credit -- was making a profit until 1933. Even in 1934-35, she was losing less money than her running mates such as the Berengaria.

quote:

yeah i have heard that. i also heard that her wiring was badly outdated and it was gonna cost way too much to fix her and get her up to code. that as well was another contributing factor to her selling.



I'd be interested to know where you heard that her wiring was 'badly outdated.' There seems to be a lot of myth surrounding Olympic in 1934-35. Although written in response to the idea that her engines were not up to scratch, my posting from Encyclopedia Titanic might be of interest:

Tarn wrote:


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quote:
Brent, I think in the case of Olympic, the plate her engines sat on was cracked, her rivets were loose, and she needed massive maitenence.


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In my view, that’s rubbish. I don’t accept that she needed massive maintenance, while following the 1932-33 engine work she was performing better than ever before. While she had suffered from some loose rivets, there is no serious concern about them in any surveyor’s reports that I have seen immediately prior to the scrapping.

Tarn wrote:


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quote:
As for the Aquitania though, accounts I have read suggests that when she was retired, her engines and her hull were sound....


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I broadly agree with these comments, yet having run through Aquitania’s survey reports around 1946-48, there were some notable problems. Certainly she was as sound as could be expected considering her age, design and service history.

Jon wrote:


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quote:
I have an audio tape of a friend of mine Harold Blakey now deceased that he made for me while on the QE2 he was an engine room writer and before joining Cunard he was on board the Olympic in the Engine Room. On the tape he tell how he and his co workers were having coffee one morning when they felt the engines suddenly going full speed astern. They threw open the deadlights and looked out just in time to see one half of the Nantucket Lightship going by their porthole. He also mentioned that the Olympics rescue boat was already halfway down to the water.


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I remember Harold’s account being published in one of the THS Commutators some years back. It was interesting to read.

Jon continues:


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quote:
Any way later in the tape he describes while they were docked in New York they were pouring lead for Babbett Bearings when they noticed a large crack in the Engine Bed Plates. What with the claims for the Lightship (White Star Line paid for a replacement of the Lightship by the way) and the cracked bed plates that spelled the end of the Olympic because to remove the engines to replace the plate and considering her age it would have not be worthwhile


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The Commutator account mentioned the ‘large crack in one of the propeller housings.’ It’s interesting that he spoke of the bedplates too, but I will come to that later. I have to disagree with your comments on the bedplates and that they spelled the end of Olympic. To quote myself, when I was writing with regard to the propeller housings:


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quote:
…On arrival in New York following the collision, there had been a brief inspection of the Olympic’s stem, indicating only some slight damage to dented hull plates; this was confirmed by an inspection at Southampton on May 24th 1934. Olympic was also due to enter the dry dock – capable of holding ships of up to 60,000 gross tons – for routine underwater hull inspection, and the White Star Line were pleased to explain that it had been arranged weeks ago. There was no significant damage. However, one of Olympic’s Engineers, Harold Blakey, recalled years later that a pre-sailing inspection had discovered ‘a large crack in one of her propeller housings.’ Such damage would apparently have been ‘costly’ to fix and there have been rumours in the past that this damage contributed to Olympic’s withdrawal from service, when it came. Yet…there does not seem to be any record of such a crack, and indeed there is nothing in Olympic’s maintenance costs in 1934 that I am aware of that would indicate any major repairs. In June 1934 reports of the collision damage were submitted to the Board of Trade and by December 4th 1934 the Board was able to report:

‘Permanent repairs have been made to [the] damage sustained in the collision. No further action is required.’

With the ship’s load line survey completed on November 29th 1934, there was no mention of any damage to the propeller housings whatsoever. If there ever had been a crack in one of the propeller housings after the collision, in addition to the dented hull plates forward, which seems doubtful, then it had been repaired by December 1934 and it had not been a costly undertaking. Certainly it had no bearing on Olympic in 1935.


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Since the subject of the bedplates has been mentioned too, I think it best to quote from Olympic’s last ever survey – it was either at the end of 1934 or the beginning of 1935. I have not got the exact date at the moment. No problems were mentioned with regard to the bedplates, and had there been any serious damage to them in mid-1934 I would have thought that it would have been mentioned in the later survey, since according to one from early 1934:


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quote:
The bedplates of the main engines have been very carefully and minutely examined and in no case could any movement or defect be discovered. The strengthening plates and stays are all solid and standing up to the loading put on them. The holding down bolts are satisfactory and it may be of interest to report that it has not been found necessary to renew any of these bolts since the repairs to the bedplates were effected.
I am informed that at no time during the vessel’s history have these conditions been maintained for a like period.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

continued...

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Mark Chirnside,
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Apr/2/2004, 3:41 pm Link to this post Send Email to Mark Chirnside   Send PM to Mark Chirnside MSN
 
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Re: Olympic


Jon then wrote:


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quote:
I don't know why so many people on the site doubt peoples words this man was smart and a long time seafarer and would have no reason to make up any stories. It seems this is the norm around here that everyone wants sworn in blood proof of everything that anyone brings up that is contrary to the insiders. HE WS THERE we were not...


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You mention a valid point. People who were there at the time would know much more about the subject than any of us today. Take the team of qualified, professional Board of Trade surveyors, for instance, who contradict the account that there was serious damage.

Mike Standart wrote:


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quote:
Jon, it's simply a matter of people with an interest in history wanting to see some documented sources to back up any number of stories that are running around out there.
…it's not unreasonable that people would want some sort of objective confirmation.


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I have to second Mike’s comments. In this case it seems unfortunate to me that Blakey’s comments appear to contradict those from the Board of Trade surveyors. Yet another case of historical sources contradicting each other.

Brent wrote:


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quote:
I would also need more info about the nature of the crack in the bedplates. And what exactly would be considered extensive damage? In addition, Olympic's retirement was not originally planned for 1935. It was originally anticipated that she would re-enter service in the summer after her lay-up in April. I also believe I read somewhere that her insurance was renewed for another year in March 1935. If this type of damage was evident in May 1934, why wasn’t Olympic withdrawn from service sooner?


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



You did indeed read somewhere that Olympic’s insurance was renewed for another year in March 1935. I’ve posted that information on a number of forums since 2001, and it’s quite possible that others have. Your question as to ‘why’ Olympic wasn’t withdrawn from service sooner if the damage was so severe is a perceptive one, and I would answer it by saying that in my view there was no severe damage. Thus, she wasn’t withdrawn. Furthermore, in August 1935 I can cite at least three statements from people ‘in the know’ – i.e. Cunard-WS officials, etc. – who have described Olympic and her machinery as being in ‘A1’ condition, or words to that effect. It was not her material condition that doomed her.

Jon wrote:


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quote:
Olympic at that time was still White Star the merger had not taken place. The loss of the Nantucket Lightship caused the plaster to be put on her mast when she docked. This was not good news for White Star Line


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Indeed it wasn’t. I’ve always felt that it brought back the sense of bad luck associated with Olympic’s early mishaps, and the case was not settled until 1936, which could not have helped anyone put it to the back of their minds.

Jon continued:


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
quote:
…plus now the discovery of the cracks. As I mentioned Harry passed away and I never thought then to get the dimensions and fine particulars as we were just chatting ships history bye the way huis faborite ships he also worked on was the Homeric anyway, I wonder if the scrapyard records if they could ever be found, would give information or better still the New York Surveyors report?? Those should be around someplace. [my emphasis]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



The surveyor’s reports do exist from the Board of Trade, although I don’t recall any American ones still in existence. From what I have seen of these, the idea of ‘extensive damage’ seems to be a myth. Descriptions such as ‘the plate her engines sat on was cracked, her rivets were loose, and she needed massive maitenence’ make frequent appearances in online chats and discussion forums, yet there is little or no evidence in their favour. Indeed, all the evidence from 1933-35 that I have seen points exactly the opposite way. That’s my belief, but I would be glad to hear from anyone who has seen any sources which contradict that statement; on and off, I’ve asked that question since 2000-01. And so far no-one has been able to provide any.


Best regards,

Mark.

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wills Profile
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Re: Olympic


mark i am not sure where i heard that about her wiring but i will check.... i twas in a book i read about 5 years ago so bear with me ....
those are intersting points you make though about her engines and so on....
wills

---
Suicide is a permenant solution to a temporay problem........

Whatever obstacles control,
Go on, true heart,
thou'lt reach the goal.


http://com4.runboard.com/bthetitanicshack
wills~~~~~
Apr/4/2004, 4:20 am Link to this post Send Email to wills   Send PM to wills Blog
 
Mark Chirnside Profile
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Re: Olympic


Hi!

quote:

mark i am not sure where i heard that about her wiring but i will check.... i twas in a book i read about 5 years ago so bear with me ....



It seems to be a widespread [sign in to see URL] one of those liner books covering a number of ships?

As you can see from my post above, Olympic's engines were sound, her hull was sound, and the only time I can recall any electrical fire was a minor one in a cabin back in 1923. I'm glad you found it of interest.

Best regards.

Mark.

---
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http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0752428683/qid=1058710005/sr=1-3/ref=sr_1_0_3/026-7843481-4858066
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wills Profile
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Re: Olympic


hello mark,


it seems i have misread the part of olympics wiring.

for it wasnt her at all. the reason i thought it was her was becasue t is in the chapter on olympic. go figure..
nope the bad wiring came from berengaria and majestic,,,,
the paragraph states.

the berengaria and majestic retained their original and apparently inferior german wiring and suffered from chronic electrical problems throughout their years of british service,

my mistake....
wills

---
Suicide is a permenant solution to a temporay problem........

Whatever obstacles control,
Go on, true heart,
thou'lt reach the goal.


http://com4.runboard.com/bthetitanicshack
wills~~~~~
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Re: Olympic


In any case, sooner or later she would have been scrapped, as all the great liners have been, guilty of the sin of no longer making a profit.

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Re: Olympic


Hi TTF

Yes in reality so would the Titanic had she not gone down first. It is a great shame but then again we all scrap old cars today and of the past. Same thing applies now there is clubs and collectors for such a thing, But then again a car is a tad cheeper than a oceon going liner.

Graham

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Re: Olympic


And usually a lot prettier! emoticon emoticon

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