Home' Ships and Shipping : November 2010 Contents THE SPANISH CONVOY OF 1750
Heaven's Hammer and
By JAMES A. LEWIS
A slim volume this may be but it is, at the
same time, a book packed with interest, facts,
ideas and edification. A very valuable work of maritime and
It is history that stretches over a quarter of a millennium from
1750 to the present. Basically it describes all the contemporary and
consequent complexity arising from the disastrous, unseasonal
voyage of a Spanish colonial convoy from Havana to Cádiz.
It is not just oil spills and piracy that complicate the lives of
mariners and their descendants. Maritime history is very much
world history as this excellent book makes abundantly clear.
Available from the University Press of Florida, Gainesville, USA.
THE DOWN EASTERS
The Story of the Cape Horners
By BASIL LUBBOCK
Another big, beautiful Lubbock sailing ship
classic from the series of fifteen currently being
marketed as a set at a special price. A great and
rare opportunity for maritime historians.
As in all his books, Lubbock describes the design, construction,
outfitting, command, crewing and ownership as well as the
activities and performance of his subject ships.
In this book he examines the trade from American nor-east
ports to the west coast, most notably San Francisco. Following the
California gold rush of the late 1840s and 1850s there was the
inevitable recession. Things then settled down and a long-term
trade in grain and other cargoes commenced in the late 1860s.
Again, as with all the clippers and their ilk, this is a story of
elegant, speedy ships and their hard driving owners and captains.
Another very important chapter of maritime history that has
been very well told.
Available from Brown, Son & Ferguson, Glasgow, UK.
Managing the Risks
Although such statistics do not seem to be
available, it is distinctly possible that in the
past five years more people have been killed
by lifeboats than were saved by them.
These too frequent killings are invariably the
result of lifeboat drills whereby something goes wrong with
lifeboat "on-load" release mechanisms.
While a major factor in the problem is the substantial weight of
lifeboats and the whole concept of launching them, the fact is that
the current system or slight variations on it is the only thoroughly
proven one. Until some genius comes up with a better and safer
system, the maritime industry will just have to try to operate the
existing system more effectively.
Clearly, and as this simple DVD and accompanying booklet
explain, the utmost care is required in launching and recovering
lifeboats. The rules are simple but they must be followed.
The North of England P&I Association is to be congratulated for
producing this valuable video.
Available from the North of England P&I Association, Newcastle upon
Tyne, UK. Web: www.nepia.com
By ALAN WATTS
Alan Watts has been renowned for
years as one of the world's leading marine weather experts.
Partly this is because he has willingly passed on his knowledge
This book is one of many he has produced. They all, including
this one, share a number of qualities. They are invariably clear,
concise, very well illustrated and easy to understand.
Anyone, unless they stick close to the equator, will be hit by a
storm one day if he goes to sea reasonably frequently.
In simple, clear and logical terms this excellent little book assists
the reader to predict the timing and severity of impending storms.
Available from Adlard Coles Nautical, London, UK.
A Photographic History
By JANETTE McCUTCHEON
An excellent collection of high
quality photographs and lithographs
describing the 170-year history of
the Cunard Line.
These illustrations are linked by a brief but wholly adequate
text which describes the development of the line and its ships.
Founder Samuel Cunard's motto for his company was "comfort,
safety and speed". He envisioned a regular and frequent
The Line's success spawned many competitors and the line
itself experienced the full gamut of business triumphs and
disasters as well as many wartime losses. It was not until the
mid-1930s that the company received government subsidies,
apart from mail contracts.
They, as always, were the kiss of death. Despite owning the
world's most impressive ships the company slid into decline. That
continued until the 1960s when jet aircraft killed off the
trans-Atlantic trade. Ill-advised takeovers and inadequate direction
led to the company's final near demise.
The wonderful Cunard "brand", though, could not be wiped
out. It now adorns some of the enormous new cruise ships of
Carnival Cruise Lines.
Available from Amberley Publishing, Stroud, UK.
AN INTRODUCTION TO
By NIGEL DRAFFIN
A clear, concise and simple book on a vital
subject by a widely acknowledged expert,
this is the third in an acclaimed series of
books on bunkering.
The author describes this as "... a guide to the operational
aspects of bunkering for people who are not specialists in
delivering marine fuels but need to understand the 'how' and
'why' of getting fuel onto ships".
Given the trend towards ever strengthening MARPOL and local
rules, the maritime industry everywhere has become increasingly
conscious of the imperative of careful fuel handling. Pollution is
one thing, the penalties for pollution whether due to accident or
carelessness are now draconian.
This practical book is set against that background. It is a
first-rate guide to clean, safe, economical bunkering operations.
Available from Petrospot. Adderbury, UK. Web: www.petrospot.com
November 2010 SHIPS AND SHIPPING
Links Archive October 2010 December 2010 Navigation Previous Page Next Page