|Posted by Allan Hickson (Mod) on March 2, 2016 at 3:35 PM|
After 265 days in dry dock, on Thursday 11th February Kerne once again took to the water.
The month started with plans afoot for the re-float to commence on 7th February, only for the weather to intervene once more, but time was not wasted as several crewmembers continued with valve and pipework refitting. The most significant event was the refitting of the funnel by the guys in the yard who craned the funnel down and tack welded it into position. What a difference – she looks like a ship again!!
On Wednesday 10th February the undocking started with the partial flooding of No 4 Drydock. This enabled the yard to check for leaks on both Kerne and Daniel Adamson. None were found.
At 9.00am the following day dock flooding commenced in earnest, with yard staff being craned in safety baskets on board both vessels to monitor the integrity of the hull repairs on the vessels as the water level rose. Again, no leaks were found. With the level of water in the dock rising to meet the river level, final checks confirmed that we had two dry ships, but given the superb quality of the work carried out by the yard staff, the result was never any doubt. Not a drop was found!
At 10.45am the dock gate was deballasted and subsequently removed by river tugs allowing Carmet tugs to enter the dock and tow the Danny out into the river. Mersey Tanker Lighterage’s ex-TID tug Seaport Alpha then entered the dock and manoeuvred Kerne out into the river for the two old steamers to be escorted the short distance into Cammell Laird’s Wet Basin for completion of repairs. - Check out the videos of the event on Facebook accessed via our Home page.
Not to rest on our laurels, several of our volunteers set about the previously inaccessible painting jobs, whilst others started on cleaning and decluttering the vessel. Numerous pipes, valves and other fitments have now been retrieved from our storage facility for refitting, whilst yard staff craned our toilet compartment back into position and secured this with tack welding.
Back down below in the Boiler Room, scaffolding has now been erected to give access to the internal boiler casing for the final welding. There is still a fair bit to do on the welding front, but the yard are now on with this and we hope that this will be completed by month end.
This coming weekend (5th-6th March) is the Model Boat Show at Ellesmere Boat Museum where we will have our Exhibition Stand. Members of our volunteer crew will be on hand, so why not come and see us there.