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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 2:41 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:44 am
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Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
I believe most of the mechanical equipment is intact, not that it wouldn't need to be replaced anyway. It's an interesting development, but I'm not holding my breath. NCL bought the "Big U" for similar reasons in 2003 and then never did anything with it. Now it's 13 years older. I suspect there are much newer cruise ships laid up that could be purchased and reactivated for less money. At least it won't be scrapped for another year...

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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:59 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:27 pm
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Location: Vt
SSUS is mechanically intact, engine rooms, piping, boilers, engine room controls, etc. She was stripped of asbestos overseas, and since that material was used in much of the walls it was completely gutted to get at the material. Props have been removed, but since the liner had 2 complete sets of props I'm sure there are enough extant to make one complete set.

Alan


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 4:24 pm 

Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2015 12:30 am
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I really doubt that making her operational is part of the gameplan. It's surely a static repurposing that's being pursued here. They've shown no sign that they're pursuing the cruising industry and such, but rather, a RMS Queen Mary style deal in the Eastern half of the country.


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 4:50 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 20, 2013 2:34 pm
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LeoA wrote:
I really doubt that making her operational is part of the gameplan. It's surely a static repurposing that's being pursued here. They've shown no sign that they're pursuing the cruising industry and such, but rather, a RMS Queen Mary style deal in the Eastern half of the country.


No, Crystal says the intention is to have it function as a ship, not a floating hotel. They would keep it flagged in the US, which allows more freedom for domestic ports of call.


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 6:42 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2010 12:41 pm
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Location: Minneapolis, MN
Don't know how much it cost to reactivate the propulsion plant in the battleships New Jersey and Wisconsin, but they were retired with some care taken to protect their machinery and the Navy was willing to spend whatever it cost. The the SSUS was just the opposite. I am pretty certain that no care was taken to preserve the machinery in the SS United States, so there will absolutely be a dauntingly large cost to restore that to operation. And that's in addition to the rest of the ship.

Sounds like a $100,000,000+ kind of project. Not very likely without an ironclad guarantee of a return on the investment.


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:14 pm 

Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:58 pm
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Location: Chicago USA
They would not reactivate that ancient gear. It would be a complete refit with diesel or turbine power. Treat this as an empty hull. What is saved by not having to build a new hull is offset by needing to take out and eventually replace sections of deck in order to remove the existing machinery and install new. (I know nothing about ship architecture so don't know if there was ever provision made to do that so assuming the worst case scenario.)

A better question is whether the numbers can be crunched to make this a worthwhile investment considering passenger capacity, and the ability to install enough amenities to attract ticket payers as compared with those monster ships out there. Then again, it's the United States that should be an attraction in itself.

Who in the US can handle any major hull work that might be needed? Newport News and Ingalls? They are focused on Naval work but surely they could handle that aspect even if the rest of the construction work is done afloat elsewhere. Any other big yards left?


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:33 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:43 am
Posts: 555
hamster wrote:
Sounds like a $100,000,000+ kind of project. Not very likely without an ironclad guarantee of a return on the investment.


The buyer already threw out a number that wasn't much less then a full billion. So they seem already willing to spend many times your figure. Maybe that's good news lol. How long could the ENTIRE steam preservation movement run with a billion? I guess people will just spend more on boats....


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:38 am 

Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 1:37 pm
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Quote:
"Last time I heard the United States was completely stripped out of all fittings including the boiler room and main bridge. It makes you wonder often just what would it take to replicate all that antiquated equipment"


Yeesh, not only negativism but the assumption that a rebuild for 'cruise' service would be preservation... do you think that a company looking to make a profit out of running AC&Y 505 would carefully restore the OP engine, all the relay logic and wiring, the ancient air-brake controls?

Bet your bottom dollar that any obsolete systems would be replaced, perhaps right down to installing 'pods' in place of part or all of the shaft system. As noted, whole sections of the existing fabric could be cocooned if not immediately needed.

Interesting to look at this in light of Robby Peartree's thread on what preservation is. In this context, it's clearly not survival of the "historic fabric" intact, and I think we should be very careful about what should be saved vs. the information that is preserved from this ship.

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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 10:26 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 9:54 am
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Location: NJ
Just how did the Strasburg get dragged into this thread? There is very little in common between the 'Big U' and their little teakettles' in both size and complexity. The only similarity is the fact that they both use steam as a power source. While Strasburg does some amazing work, their shop just does not have the space or lift capacity to work on any but the smallest parts on that ship. I would venture a guess that one link of the anchor chain weighs as much as one of 90's main rods. I've been in a good number of marine enginerooms, from small island ferries to battleships, and that stuff is BIG.

The engineering plant on the United States was a prototype for the Forrestal class of supercarriers; built for speed, and very complex. Some details of the design were kept classified until the 1970s. One thing that will be an issue, if that plant is retained, will be finding enough steam licensed and qualified marine engineers to keep it running. Just talk to the guys with the Liberty and Victory ships.

Overmod beat me to it- My thoughts on replacing the engineering plant would be to copy some of the latest cruise ships, which are diesel electric. Banks of gensets provide both main prop and ship's service power. They are put online, and taken off, as demand changes. Azipods (and bow thrusters) would make the ship easier to dock, maybe even without the use of tugs. The existing screws were designed for speed, and may not be the best design for a cruise ship. Replacing the turbines with electric motors, coupled to the red gears, may not be the best solution. Probably the smartest thing to do would be to use the hull as a blank sheet of 'paper', so to speak, and build a new, fuel efficient plant.


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 2:30 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 12:36 am
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This came thru my Youtube feed a while back...

Exploring Decaying SS United States 2015
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxIgkgBbpQg

Lots of good footage..

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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 2:48 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:25 pm
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Interesting fact - the leadership at Norwegian Caribbean looked at SS United States before purchasing SS France to become the Norway. I think their decision had to do with the secrecy involved with the original design of SSUS. While the ship has been gutted to the framing, I do not think the engineering spaces were abated. When you look at the CAD rendering, the new superstructure has much of the same profile as the 1990s "party hat" decks added to Norway with the forward upper deck extended over the bridge and the shorter funnels. I wish them well.

Wesley


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 2:55 pm 

Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:40 pm
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It stands to reason that the new owners would virtually have to install far more fuel-efficient and environmentally compliant propulsion and hotel power systems than the ship would have had when new or when retired.


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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 7:17 pm 
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A modern technology 60 MW cruise ship power plant (4 main engines, two 20 MW Azipods and bow thrusters) should handle propulsion and ships service load for a modernized liner United States very nicely. This ship has much finer hull lines than the vessels they are building for cruise service nowadays. Unfortunately this ship also has about four feet more draft than many recently built cruise ships.

PC

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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 2:18 am 

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Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Deep draft is a problem for ocean liners-turned-cruise ships. The SS Norway had to carry two small tenders, Little Norway I and II, to transport passengers to and from some ports of call.

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 Post subject: Re: (OT) SS United States up agains the wall again...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:28 pm 
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Tenders are a big deal for cruise ships that they really want to avoid using, something many people who cruise a lot won't book on a ship for if they think they'll have to use them.
I've seen this personally, having had to use a tender on a cruise ship at Lahaina, Hawaii to go ashore to ride the Lahaina, Kaanapali and Pacific Railroad that was running at the time out of there...
Many of the passengers with us both ways were furious that they had to get to shore and back that way.

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