Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Capesize casualty in Korea, Typhoon Bolaven

Busan, Aug 28 -- Bulk carrier Pacific Carrier (77458 gt, built 1986), laden with some 40,000 tons of damaged coal, was lying anchored at Samchonpo anchorage, Samchonpo, when it dragged anchor and ran aground on the sandy bottom during strong winds caused by typhoon "Bolaven" at 0635 today. The vessel has broken into two parts. No oil spill/pollution or crew injury has been reported up until this time. The vessel still remains aground at the site without wreck removal operation schedule being fixed yet. The vessel is insured for hull and machinery risks by the Meritz Fire & Marine Insurance Co Ltd, Seoul, and P&I risks by Japan P&I. -- Lloyd's Sub-agents (Hyopsung)

AM (with thanks to Blog contributor Freddy)

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

The Emperor's new clothes?

The Antipodean Mariner has been a frequently commentator on Vale's failing strategy to control freight from Brazil to China. The fleet of 400,000 DWT ValeMax ore carriers remain unwelcome on China's maritime doorstep.

Seen this week at Subic Bay are not one, not two but three laden ValeMaxes ('Vale Qingdao', 'Berge Everest' and 'Vale Rio de Janiero') plus three Capesize bulkers and Ore Fabrica.

From 10th August, when the AM watched 'Vale Qingdao' rafting up with 'Berge Townsend' and 'Ore Fabrica', it has taken 18 days to discharge the full cargo at an average of about 22,000 tonnes per day. Claiming 5,000 tonnes per hour, achieving less than 1,00 tonnes per hour.

With maybe US$600 million in assets anchored, how long can Vale continue to 'spin' the good news story that Subic Bay represents a viable trans-shipment alternative to China's deep water ore ports?


Day 0 - Rafting up after 13 days anchored
Day 15 - Rafted with 'Samjohn Vision'
Day 15 - Vale Rio de Janiero (left) and Berge Everest (right) anchored
awaiting their turn to discharge with another two Capes to seaward.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

'RTM Cartier' Delivery and Departure

Just back from a whirlwind delivery trip, less than 48 hours in the Philippines. The ship was ready, we did our thing and the UK Ship Register did their thing. 'RTM Cartier' became a British ship at 13:30 Local Time Friday 24th August 2012 and departed the following day at noon, smiles all round.

Again, will let the pictures and the video tell the story. Two down, six to go...

Leaving from Fort Bonifacio, Manila for Subic

The cargo hold are unpainted at the bottom (the tank top)
as the first iron ore cargo loading will just shot blast
off any coating
Closing Ceremony
The completed and painted Engine Room
Poop Deck with freefall lifeboat and new mooring lines
Ready for departure on Saturday 25th
Tug standing by to make fast

Kicking the engine ahead and astern
Underway for sea
HHIC's Dock 6 Director and Contract Director watching
another of their vessels sailing away
Proud Dad
Ballasting down to sea condition, next stop Singapore

Homeward bound

The Antipodean Mariner

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

'RTM Cartier' sea trial gallery and video

The sea trial for our second ship, Hull PN66 to be named RTM Cartier, was far less problematic that the first born and (only) slipped by a day. The Philippines is getting a real hammering in this year's monsoon season, large parts of Manila and Luzon have been flooded and productivity in the Yard has been impacted by rain like the Antipodean Mariner hasn't seen for decades.

Picture yourself standing in a lukewarm shower wearing a hardhat and boilersuit...

Not too much to add to the standard procedure of the sea trial, to will let the photos and video do the talking.

Back to Subic tomorrow to write the cheque and pick up the keys...


RTM Dampier from RTM Cartier
RTM Zheng He ahead
Pulling off the berth in torrential rain
My home for three days. Sleeping with a co-workers was never fun...
Work in progress or art?
Big ship, small accommodation
Departing on the tug so that we made it back to Manila for our flight
Sisters RTM Dampier and RTM Zheng He
L-R Berge Townsend, Ore Fabrica, Vale Qingdao


Steering gear test - hard a port to hard a starboard in less than 28 seconds at16 knots

Starting the M/E after the Intermediate Shaft Bearing stripdown

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Vale Qingdao at Subic

Quick post before we depart early afternoon. Leak on the mechanical seal of a pump required a robbery mission to one of the other ships at the Fitting Out Quay. Last ship in the series will be a real bitzer.

In Subic Bay, Vale Qingdao (in STX colours), Ore Fabrica and Berge Townsend. Pouring down but the local traffic doesn't stop.


Monday, 6 August 2012

In Subic Bay

It's raining, raining so hard that a sailing jacket and overpants are almost useless. Water is pouring off the decks and the Yard has told us the the Government Maritime Safety Authority has to give permission for us to put to sea in the morning.

We have a full contingent from the Owners, Ship Managers, senior Officers and MAN-B&W, the engine makers. The Captain is an experienced hand and has commanded one of our Post-Panamax bulk carriers. The final pre-trials meeting with the Yard has satisfied us that PN66 is ready for sea. One night ashore and then to sea until Thursday.

At anchor in the Bay, looks like one of the STX ValeMaxs fully loaded, Ore Fabrica and a Bergesen Cape. No cargo being transferred today.

Will keep a daily log and post when we get into wi-fi. Photos of RTM Dampier PN67 behind us and RTM Zheng He ahead.


Sunday, 5 August 2012

Sea trials (again)

The AM has been suffering from writers block. Corporate restructure and a review of capital spending has killed the motivation to blog for the past couple of weeks.

At the airport on a Sunday morning, returning to Subic Bay for sea trials of PN66 RTM Cook. The Philipinnes is in the middle of the monsoon season with heavy rain and the odd typhoon forecast. Sea trials are scheduled for Tuesday to Thursday, shorter because the 'first ship' tests were done on PN65 RTM Cook. The site team is reporting that PN66 is better prepared and has a shorter defects list.

The lineup at the Yard now is PN66 ready for sea trials, PN67 and PN68 alongside fitting out and PN69-72 under construction in Dock 6. Will post when Wi-fi is available. Also posting to Instagram, ID antipodean_mariner.