THE PLANT OF
FORE RIVER SHIP
AS SEEN BY
Staff Correspondent of a Leading Magazine.
COPYRIGHT, 1902, BY THE H.
B. HUMPHREY COMPANY, BOSTON.
. FORE RIVER . .
THE United States has, in the past few years, become
a world power in the industrial as well as in the political sense.
The foreign markets have been invaded so aggressively that the manufacturers
across the seas fear that their own products will be neglected.
American goods of all sorts, in ever increasing quantities, are
being shipped to all parts of the world. With the enlarged demand
for our manufactures has come a call for our own ships, this having
been especially marked since the building of the new navy according
to American plans in American yards. The rumored consolidation of
steamship lines under the control of American capital
is another evidence of this. The revival of business in hitherto
abandoned shipyards is an indication that American shippers are
demand that their goods be transported in American
bottoms, vessels constructed in home shipyards. A ship subsidy bill
has already been proposed to Congress, and it will not be many years
before Americans visiting foreign lands will be gladdened by
the sight of as many more vessels flying the stars and stripes as
are now showing the colors of Great Britain or Germany.
The supremacy of the United States in steel production
and the cheapness, rapidity of manufacture, and high quality
of that all-important metal are other factors that play a large
part in American ship-building. It was demon started long ago that
iron ships are far ahead of wooden ones; and steel, by reason
of its greater strength and consequent lighter weight, is vastly
superior to iron; therefore, the new ships are built of steel.
THE START OF THE NEW FORE RIVER PLANT. LAYING
THE FOUNDATIONS OF THE "FORGE."
From every shipyard in the land comes the tattoo
of the riveter's hammer, the clang of steel plates, and the dull
thud of steam hammers on ingots of metal. America is coming into
her own again as a ship-building and maritime nation.
In the old, elm-bowered town of Quincy, Mass.,
the birthplace of two of our Presidents, John Adams and John Quincy
Adams, has sprung up almost magically a great ship-building plant.
Almost within the shadow of the quaint, old-time houses is the cradle
of a mighty infant, which, although still in its earliest youth,
is representative of some of the great industrial achievements of
our time. Here, surrounded by a hundred reminders of a noble past,
is the home of this giant industry, combining in itself all the
romance of the olden time and the accomplishment of the new age.
So quietly and unobtrusively has this industry grown that when the
FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE
COMPANY was awarded the contract for two great
battleships, people asked, "Who are these men who have been
given the contract for sister warships?"
Two years ago the banks of the Fore River sloped
back to grassy meadows and fruitful orchards; to-day on this same
plot of eighty acres more than a score of gigantic buildings stand,
the embodiment of American enterprise. Five warships have been completed
or are in course of construction, and a seven-masted
steel schooner, the largest sailing vessel in the world, will
be ready for launching soon after this appears in print. Contracts
amounting to more than eight millions of dollars are being executed,
and three of the largest ships of their class are here being constructed.
The sister battleships, " New Jersey" and "
Rhode Island,"14,948 tons each, the greatest of Uncle
Sam's dogs of war, and the cruiser "Des Moines" are being
built for the Government, and a seven -
masted steel schooner 405 feet over all (11,000
tons displacement) will be launched within two months. Still, there
is room for the construction of six more vessels in this
If the two terms were not paradoxical, one might
say that the FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY is a permanent mushroom
growth. At one side of a vast enclosure is a series of gates that
remind one of an exposition. These gates are the focusing point
of the radiating lines along which the 1,000 work-people come from
thirty-four different towns to the shipyard (showing what a central
point Quincy is). Over the gates are painted letters, indicating
the different departments. Each employee enters the gate of his
own department. A num-
THE “FORGE,” SHOWING HAMMERS WHICH MAY BE DIRECTLY
CONTRASTED WITH THE FULL SIZE, NEW YORK, NEW HAVEN, AND HARTFORD
In the foreground is an ingot of steel, as well as several thrust-shafts
for the cruiser and other ships. The largest hammer, which is
in the background, may be contrasted with the one in the foreground,
which was much nearer the camera.
bered brass check is handed each individual, who
in turn gives it to the timekeeper of the proper department, and
the time is then marked, — at the actual moment of beginning work.
Starting at the employees' entrance gate, the plant
of the fore river ship and engine company is laid out progressively,
all lines of effort leading to the towering ship house. All material
for hull, engines, sails and rigging, or spar work, from the moment
of its entrance as raw material, progresses toward the great ships
of which it is to become
a part. A great billet of steel, two feet square
and ten feet long, of many tons weight, starts on its long journey
near the forge shop; and on its way to its final resting-place in
the ship, almost a mile away, it never once touches the ground;
human hands do but direct it. Not once does any piece of ship machinery,
fitting, or rigging retrace its steps; the march is always onward.
Towering like a great grain elevator or
a modern Tower of Babel is the annealing plant, one of the first
of the structures to be seen from a distance. It seems to stand
A RACE-HORSE AT REST. THE TORPEDO BOAT DESTROYER "
TAKEN AT THE DOCK.
THE PLATE YARD.
Showing the Crane which has a span of 150 feet, and travels up
and down the yard, a distance of 800 feet. In this plate yard there
is stored, at all times, from ten to fifteen thousand tons of steel.
THE MACHINE SHOP FROM THE WESTERLY END.
In the middle foreground are shown the engines of the
cruiser "Des Moines," now being erected.
A CORNER IN THE MACHINE SHOP.
ENGINES OF THE TORPEDO BOAT DESTROYERS " MACDONOUGH
" AND "LAWRENCE."
Developing, approximately 8,000 H. P. at 350 revolutions.
These marvelous engines run with the smoothness of a watch.
THE TORPEDO BOAT DESTROYER " LAWRENCE."
From a photograph by Stebbins, Boston. Taken on one of
the "tuning up" trips at a speed of 27 knots.
over the forge shop, from which comes the
work that keeps its fiery digestion active.
The forge shop, broad and long, stands a
little to the left of the annealing plant. Through its open doors
a full-sized locomotive goes puffing in and out, dragging in at
one end cars loaded with shapeless chunks of steel, and out at the
other completed crank-shafts, propeller shafts, and gun forgings.
Inside the great building, which has a floor space of 22,000 square
feet, great eyes of white light stare out of the gloom from the
open hearths of the flaming furnaces, and dim figures of men guide
here and there great masses of glowing white hot metal.
Close to the main door stands, straddling a great
anvil, the second one of the largest hammers in existence, a metallic
steam-driven arm capable of striking a blow with the force of 250
tons (500,000 pounds), yet so completely under control that a walnut
may be broken by it without smashing the kernel. A little to the
right of this modern Colossus (for the great hammer reminds one
strongly of a giant figure standing with feet braced ready to deliver
a tremendous blow) is the furnace that heats the ingots of steel,
a veritable cavern of heat, the light and glare being so intense
that the naked eyes cannot bear to look upon it.
Distributed about the immense floor, large enough
to accommodate a national convention, are many furnaces and many
hammers, some large enough to shape the crank-shaft of a battleship,
and ranging down to a little machine which is used for fashioning
bolts, and which strikes blows as rapid
as a drummer. Each of these hammers is driven
by steam, generated by the surplus heat from the furnaces, that
would otherwise go to waste through the chimneys. A great electric
crane swings along on overhead tracks, by means of which one man
can direct the picking up of a 25-ton piece of metal, and run off
with it as easily as a dog trots away with a bone. Each of the larger
hammers is served by this or another crane, and a standard track
runs through the building, so that the rough forged pieces of metal
may be transported to the machine shop, where they are to take their
The power house. Between the forge shop
and the machine shop lies the source of the energizing power of
the whole plant. From this point radiates the power that makes the
electric bulbs glow in the office building at one end of the yard,
and drives the compressed-air riveting machine in the cavernous
depths of the cruiser " Des Moines " at the extreme outer
edge. Here in a high, light room, shining with cleanliness, neat
as a housewife's kitchen, are located the engines and dynamos of
1,200 horse capacity, and, also, two air compressors, one of 5,000
cubic foot capacity, and the other of 1,000 cubic feet. A battery
of six boilers supplies the steam for all; and so carefully planned
is this steam plant that a fire-room staff of but one man is needed.
By the use of individual motors on each machine the power is delivered
at the machine using it with the greatest convenience, cleanliness,
and economy, both of space and money. It is estimated that one-third
of the power required to run long lines of shafting and pulleys
A General View of the Plant.
The power equipment is one of the striking
examples of the FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY'S good judgment
and far-sighted economy. The first cost of so many electric motors
was great, and there has been practically no precedent for such
comprehensive use of electric power. The soundness of their judgment,
however, already has been proven, for the difference in cost between
individual motors and a system of shafting has already been saved
by the economy of power, and, erelong, the cost of the motors will
be wiped out.
The machine shop. Just beyond the power
house stretches a great building, with tiers and tiers of windows,
a titan workshop, light as the great outdoors. Clean and orderly,
there is little to suggest the ordinary machine shop in this beautiful
room. The perspective makes the room seem interminable, and the
long lines of lathes add to this impression. Here the rough, rugged
forgings are brought to be planed and smoothed down to the shining
cranks, shafts, and piston rods that will later glide and smoothly
revolve in the somber depths of great ships.
When the writer visited this immense shop, the
crank-shaft of the "Des Moines" was being turned into
its final shape, the great bulk of metal, much taller than a tall
man, was being turned around and around as easily as one turns a
pencil between the fingers. At each revolution a chip was taken
off a projecting shoulder, and so gradually the whole was shaved
down to its final form. Just beyond this lathe another stretched
its great length of 115 feet along the granolithic floor, where
a propeller shaft, 50 feet long, was
being bored through longitudinally to lighten it.
This is one of the few lathes in the world long enough to bore a
50-foot shaft from end to end without reversing. A little further
down the room stands a big planer, capable of smoothing down a block
of metal 12 feet square and 30 feet long. The room, which, by the
way, contains about 1¾ acres of floor space (76,224 square feet),
is full of lathes, planers, drills, boring lathes, and the hundred
and one little machines that are almost lost in the general survey
of this shop, but which play an important part in the work of ship-building,
and which represent no inconsiderable portion of the investment
of $350,000 which is charged to this building.
Here, again, is seen the economy of electric power,
for each of the power-driven machines is served by an electric motor,
which is in motion and drawing power only when the machine is in
active operation. No enormous system of shafting is operated for
the sake of the comparatively few machines that are run simultaneously.
The machine shop lies alongside the creek, dredged
to a depth of 30 feet at low water, both sides of which are owned
by the company, so placed by foresight that is akin to genius; for
by reason of this proximity to the water, a heavy piece of machinery
may be lowered by an electric crane into a pit below the floor,
laid on a car, run over a track built for the purpose out under
another crane, which handles it directly to the ship of which it
is to become a part.
It has been found necessary to double the length
of this huge machine shop, though it is hardly eighteen months since
its original foundations were laid.
THE MOLD LOFT.
72 feet wide and 304 feet long. Here
are laid down, FULL SIZE, the lines of the ship.
Annealing, to which reference has already
been made, is the intermediate step in the manufacture of steel
machinery. The great tower of the annealing plant contains a furnace
and an oil tank each 50 feet high, the furnace fed by oil fuel,
into which seething well of flame forged shafts, cranks, or gun
jackets are lowered and heated to the required temperature. The
expert who determines this is raised and lowered up and down the
towers, and peeps through holes into the columns of flame, watching
the color of the heated metal within. At the proper moment the shaft
is withdrawn, plunged into a cooling well of oil, and the process
of tempering completed.
The building of a ship is the most complex
form of construction, and a battleship is the most intricate of
marine creations. A battleship is not only a vessel
to float on the sea: she is also a fort, an arsenal, a hotel, capable
of accommodating over a thousand men. Her equipment must include
a refrigerating plant, a complete electric light and power station,
telephones, and an enormous kitchen, besides the most powerful and
perfect of engines. For every detail of this vast and intricate
equipment, plans must be drawn, in duplicate, one set
to be retained at the works for working drawings,
the other to be filed at Washington. The immensity of this
task can hardly be realized. Several floors of the large office
building are devoted to the draughtsmen, and a corps of young women
are employed, whose sole duty is the copying of plans for Washington.
The plans for a ship are, of necessity,
drawn in reduced scale; but in order to produce the exact designed
curve of a frame or the sweep of a deck the lines must be plotted
out full size. The mold loft of the FORE RIVER SHIP AND
A JOGGLING MACHINE. ELECTRICALLY OPERATED.
By means of this machine plates are bent at the edges so as to
make a smoother surface on the outside of a ship.
THE CRANK-SHAFT OF THE CRUISER “DES MOINES" BEING
TURNED DOWN ON A 72-INCH LATHE.
The electric motor which drives this huge lathe is shown
at the left.
ENGINE COMPANY, where the lines of all the ships
built by them are laid out full size, is a room that makes the beholder
exclaim involuntarily. Flooded with mellow, sunshiny, yellow
light stretches a room half as long again as an ordinary city block
(304 feet) and 72 feet wide. In all this
vast space not a post obstructs the view, the
sky-lighted roof being supported entirely by trusses from the walls.
The floor, smooth and level as if made for dancing, forms a surface
upon which are drawn, in pencil, the lines of the ship under construction.
Every line and every curve of every frame and
THE PROTECTED CRUISER “DES MOINES.”
DISPLACEMENT, 3,200 tons.
SPEED, 16½ knots
ARMOR: Deck, ½ inch on flat, 1 inch to 2 inches
ARMAMENT: Ten 5-inch R. F.; eight 6-pounders; two
1-pounders; 4 Colts; one 3-inch field gun.
COMPLEMENT 293 men.
THE SHIP HOUSE, UNDER PROCESS OF CONSTRUCTION.
Beneath this structure the battleships "New Jersey"
and "Rhode Island" are being built. At the left of the picture
is to be seen the seven-masted schooner, now in course of construction
FIRST-CLASS BATTLESHIPS "RHODE ISLAND" AND "
. . 14,948 tons.
SPEED . . .
. 19 knots.
BUNKER CAPACITY . .
. . .
ARMOR: Belt, 11 to 4 inches; turrets, 11 to 10
inches and 6½ to 6 inches; barbettes, 10
inches and 6 inches;
deck, flat, 1½ inch; slope, 3 inches.
ARMAMENT: Four 12-inch, 40-caliber B. L.; eight
8-inch 45 caliber B. L.;
twelve 6-inch 50-caliber R. F.; twelve 3-inch
R. F.; twelve 3-pounders;
eight 1-pounders; two 3-inch field guns; six automatic guns; two
TORPEDO TUBES . .
. 2 submerged.
COMPLEMENT . . . 705 men.
of each plate is here laid out full size. To the
uninitiated it is a labyrinth of meaningless lines. The workmen,
however, understand them thoroughly, and following each curve, lay
out the thin boards which will later serve as patterns for the ship's
plates and frames. A model of the vessel is close at hand for easy
reference; this is a perfect copy in miniature, but exactly in proportion,
having the position and size of each plate plainly marked, so that
it is a simple matter to verify the lines laid out on the floor.
Below the mold loft pattern-makers were busy making
exact models in wood of the parts that were to be cast in metal—iron,
bronze, brass, or steel. In one corner stood a pattern for a set
of triple-expansion engine cylinders, standing higher than a man
could reach, while close at hand a man was piecing together with
infinite care a pattern for a valve casting. The cleanliness and
quiet was very noticeable. The same building that houses the mold
loft and pattern shop is also roomy enough to contain the wood-working
shop: here all the wood fittings of a ship are made—lockers, skylights,
chests, companionway ladders, cabin tables, gratings, small boat
gear, even roll top desks for the captain's cabin.
The FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY's yard is
certainly a place of magnificent distances. Hardly a building is
less than 100 feet long, and one of them is over 400 feet in length,
yet each structure is so placed that it can be doubled in size and
still leave plenty of room for the movement of material; in fact,
many of the buildings are arranged in line so that they may be extended
in such a way as to grow together, thus combining allied departments.
Next the pattern shop lies the plate yard,
as it is technically called. Large enough to encamp a regiment comfortably,
or contain the Madison Square Garden, New York, with 200 feet to
spare, the plate yard now contains over 15,000 tons (30,000,000
pounds) of steel. From end to end, travels an electric crane that
spans the width of the yard (150 feet), — a great lattice-like structure
that seems gossamer-like in lightness, and yet is capable of picking
up an inch-thick plate, 15 by 20 feet, and carrying it at a rate
of 500 feet a minute. This traveling crane is controlled by one
man, with the aid of a series of electric motors. A track is laid
through the center of the plate yard, over which an ubiquitous locomotive
draws the company's own flat cars over the company's transportation
The natural advantages of the FORE RIVER
SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY become more and more apparent as one studies
the works. A creek or inlet of the salt Fore River makes inland
and divides the property in two: on one side the present plant is
built; on the other is a vast space on which will be constructed
refitting piers, floating docks, and any buildings that may be found
necessary. The creek is 30 feet deep and wide enough to float four
or more battleships abreast. Into this inlet the ships will be floated
when launched, and tied alongside the 1200-foot fitting-out pier,
where armor, guns, turrets, and masts will be put in with the aid
of a giant crane. By necessity or lack of foresight many ship-builders
have gone to the expense of bringing the "mountain to Mahomet,"
but the designers of the FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY works
believe that the
reverse is much easier and more economical. Following
this line of reasoning, it was thought to be easier to move the
crane carrying a heavy weight than to shift the position of a ship.
The fitting-out crane, therefore, will be built on a track along
the pier, upon which it will run as easily as a trolley car and
may be used to transport a piece of machinery from the machine shop,
lift it over the side of a vessel, and lower it into the exact place
for which it is designed. One
THE HOSE HOUSE.
Fore River has a powerful fire pump and a complete
set of fire plugs as well as a well-organized fire department
among its employees.
man perched in a little box, like the wheel house
of a steamer, where he can see in every direction, controls each
motion electrically with perfect ease and mathematical accuracy.
The general plan of the "works,"
which is progressive, was possible because nothing but plain open
country existed, no permanent buildings hindered, no city boundaries
interfered — the natural conditions were most favorable. A far-sighted,
intelligent plan, courage, and capital were the only requisites
necessary to build a perfect shipyard, and these conditions were
all fulfilled marvelously.
Following the general trend, the ship tool house,
where the plates and frames are made ready for the ship, is nearest
the launching ways. One end of this dim shop is floored with steel
and resembles a gigantic checker-board; small square holes at regular
intervals mark it in every direction, and square plugs like cribbage
pegs stick up in lines and curves. A row of glowing furnaces stand
at one side. If one is fortunate enough to be on hand at the right
moment, a snake-like strip of red-hot metal may be seen issuing
from the mouth of one of the furnaces, whence it is dragged, twisting
and spitting flaming sparks, round the pegs that determine its final
shape. The faces of the workmen are brought out in clear relief
by the glowing ruddy light, and the half gloom deepens by comparison.
In the ship tool shop are located the mighty shears that clip inch
plates into the shape marked on them with chalk as laid out by the
the mold loft. A punch bites out the rivet holes
as easily as if the plates were made of cheese, and a man with a
machine that looks like a lawn mower, operated by an electric motor,
runs over the plate as it lies on the ground and countersinks the
holes. Another application of the "Mahomet to the mountain"
principle – in other shipyards the heavy plates are carried to a
countersinking machine. In this building is also located a giant
punch, which with one bite is capable of cutting a hole 18 by 36
inches in a nickel steel plate an inch thick. By this machine alone
over $1,200 was saved in the cost of one vessel now being constructed.
The ship house stands towering over the
ship tool shop, great as it is (55,770 square feet floor space),
– the focus of all the lines of effort, as it is the point towards
which all eyes turn. Built of steel girders, narrow and slender,
the splendid fabric standing against the sky looks like a huge spider
web. Yet so strong is this great structure that eight electric cranes,
each carrying heavy weights, may be operated at once. The operators
perched on the cranes themselves are 100 feet from the ground. Four
ships of the size of the battleships now building, each of which
has a beam of 76 feet, may be built at once in this ship house without
interfering with one another in the least. This towering building
is but 300 square feet less in sectional area than the South Terminal
Station of Boston, which in this dimension is the largest of the
world. From the foundations made of Quincy granite, laid under the
roof of this ship house, will be launched two of Uncle Sam's mightiest
battleships, and from the fitting-out pier, close at
hand, will these great dogs of war start out for
the official trial course off Cape Ann. The Cape Ann course is but
a four or five hours' run from the FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY's
yard, a thing of considerable importance when the cost of $2,500
per diem for wages and maintenance on trial trips is considered.
Uncle Sam is an exceedingly careful buyer,
and unless the very highest qualifications are proved, his patience
is of the shortest. Rarely before in the history of the navy has
a contract been awarded to one company for two first-class battleships.
The "Rhode Island" and "New Jersey" are the
largest vessels ever ordered by the United States of any company,
and the fact that sister ships were ordered at the
THE SICK BAY OR EMERGENCY HOSPITAL.
Where accidents to any of the employees get the
best of surgical attention.
same time, as well as a cruiser and two torpedo
boat destroyers, proved that the FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY
is considered fully qualified to undertake any government work,
no matter how exacting and tremendous. The two boats already built
for the navy, following designs drawn by the FORE RIVER COMPANY,
have already proved their efficiency.
The "Macdonough" and "Lawrence,"
the two torpedo boat destroyers, are rated by Government as 98 and
99 respectively, completed, and will within the next few weeks have
their trial trips and be delivered to the navy.
The natural advantages of the Fore River plant
and the proximity to the official trial course far outweigh the
difference in freight rates between shipyards lying nearer to the
great steel mills of Pennsylvania.
The attitude of employees toward their "company"
is a fair index of the spirit in which that company is run. The
workmen at the Fore River Works are always busy; there is
a kind of hearty vim to their work that suggests
interest; they appreciate the benefits of the restaurant provided
for their use, where food may be bought at very small cost. The
hospital where employees are cared for by the company's doctor,
at the company's expense, is not the least of the privileges which
the men enjoy. A beautiful piece of property sloping down to the
water has been bought by some of the officers of the Fore River
yards, that is to be divided into small plots and sold to the employees
at very low and easy terms. "A contented employee is a valuable
asset" is the motto of this thriving shipyard.
On the river edge of the old town of Quincy, in
the State of Massachusetts, has grown a great shipyard. So quickly
has it risen that people of nearby Boston hardly knew of its existence;
but it is safe to say the FORE RIVER SHIP AND ENGINE COMPANY is
destined to play a large part in the rebuilding of the United States
Navy and the American Merchant marine.
|Probably the quickest repair job of its kind ever made
in this country was completed by the Fore River Ship and Engine Company.
The British steamship "Isle of Kent," of 3,038 gross tons,
was in collision with the Spanish steamship "Amesti," on
Dec. 14, 1901, about 350 miles east of Boston Light. The "Amesti"
was struck amidships on the starboard side, the "Isle of Kent"
hitting her bow on, and so great was the force of the blow that
she was practically cut in half and sank in about 15 minutes, the
crew, however, being saved. The "Isle of Kent" carried a
cargo of cotton for a European port, and the fact that her fore peak,
Fore River Ship and Engine Company, $25,500, time,
The twenty-five day proposition of the Fore River
Ship and Engine Company was accepted, the contract exacting a demurrage
of $250 per day for failure to complete within the time specified.
Within three days after signing the contract the steel forging for
the stem was completed, it being in one piece, 62 ft. long
and 10 by 2¾-in. section. Had it not been for the company's forge
equipment, the obtaining of such a forging would have been attended
with serious delays.
the collision bulkhead, was full of cotton probably
saved the vessel, for the cotton, acting as a cushion, prevented
the damage from extending back of the bulkhead, and she was able
to reach the port of Boston.
After discharging 800 bales of cotton from No.
1 hold, the vessel was placed in dry dock for survey, and the accompanying
photograph shows the condition of the stem and adjoining plating,
two plates having been taken off to enable the removal of cotton
in the fore peak. The injuries were found to involve about thirty
plates and five pairs of frames, and bids for permanent repairs
were opened December 30, the bids being as follows: Bertelsen
& Peterson, $18,950, time, fifty-five days; Lockwood Manufacturing
Company, $24,985, time, forty days; Atlantic Works, $22,450, time,
forty days; Fore River Ship and Engine Company, $23,250, time, twenty-five
Although the work was carried on at East Boston,
some ten miles from the Fore River Plant, this disadvantage
did not prevent the completion of the contract well within the time
agreed upon. The floating machine shop was towed from Quincy to
the dry dock, thus greatly facilitating much of the work,
and the company's steam lighter was in service between the works
and the ship.
Those familiar with such repair jobs in this and
other countries expressed surprise at the despatch with which the
work was carried on, and also their belief that it was a record
job, the ship having been floated out of dock in nineteen and
a half working days, the job fully completed in twenty-four days,
and the cargo restowed and the vessel ready to leave port on the
evening of the twenty-fifth day. — Marine Review.