Message Boards

Message Boards (
-   Save the DELTA QUEEN (
-   -   Changes in the DQ since she last carried overnight passengers? (

Russ Ryle 02-16-2016 08:26 AM

Changes in the DQ since she last carried overnight passengers?
Morning all,

What structural and mechanical changes have been made in the Delta Queen to date since she was laid up?

Thanks, Russ Ryle

Mike Washenko 02-27-2016 04:41 PM

I'll be visiting her next week and will try to answer your questions when I get back.

Mike Washenko 03-20-2016 12:25 PM

Sorry this has taken so long but anyway better late than never.

Quoting from a post by Phillip Johnson last November 2nd in another thread:

"As for the boat itself, she's doing just fine. The boat has been made weather tight and all the leaks have been stopped, and deck cracks repaired to prevent any further deterioration.

The primary goal of any work done in the slip at Houma has always been to stop the water leaks and deterioration of the wood. Hence why the roof was sealed, decks repaired and drains replaced. Most of that work has already been completed. All of the heavy major renovations will be undertaken when the boat is moved into a shipyard proper and a larger work force brought in. This will happen once the exemption passes. The boat is in a good area, has constant patrolling security onboard and is well lit at night. All is well on the Delta Queen."

This pretty much sums up what has been completed. For those of you on Facebook there are many pictures of the work that was done and things look the same as they did in those pictures except that the Queen has gotten a little dirty just sitting in the slip. They did a complete wash last fall but dirt is in the air and sticks, what can I say.

The slip is in a secure location and there is 24/7 365 security on board to keep scrappers and vandals out.

What we need now is to get Congress off there duffs and act on the exemption bills. The House and Senate are both going on Easter break until after April 1st maybe some of you can make personal visits to your reps office and ask for support.

Russ Ryle 03-21-2016 06:52 AM

re: Staterooms opened up into larger rooms?
Morning Mike,

Someplace I think I remember the small staterooms we all loved were opened up to make fewer larger rooms. Was this in fact done? If so, what does the new layout look like?

Keep your steam up!

Russ Ryle

Mike Washenko 03-21-2016 07:17 AM

No alterations have been made to any of the staterooms that weren't made prior to the current owners taking over.

Many years ago (I don't remember exactly when) there was some enlarging when they added toilets to every room and removed the community one's on all the stateroom decks.

Judy Patsch 03-21-2016 07:53 AM

Last enlarging
That happened in the layup between 1983-84, when the Skid Row rooms were combined into the two rooms with bathtubs and the bathroomless rooms were added to their adjoining rooms to enlarge them. This was all on the Cabin Deck. Then at some later point, can't remember the year, they removed the Officers Quarters on the Sundeck and made large staterooms. This happened when they added the outside stairs to the pilothouse since they eliminated the original steep interior stairs for those rooms. But as Mike said, nothing has been done in this ownership, and reading between the lines, it really means nothing has been done since the last report last fall, period.

R. Dale Flick 03-21-2016 01:22 PM

*Changes on DQ over the years*
Steamboating colleagues:
Judy, thanks for your keen memory RE: 'Last enlarging' with renovation, expansion of DQ cabins with new baths, elimination of other aspects as I drew one big [?] here myself. Years back there were also several small--very small--outside cabins on the Cabin Deck also removed in the combining work. Original drawings of the DQ in Capt. Tom Greene's day were never realized with them being scratched, new plans drawn up with the bar off the Orleans Room, relocation of the gift shop. One issue with the DQ was no interior hall ways on the top decks for people to use avoiding bad weather. In California days there had also been a barbershop in that one place. The DQ then, in essence, was built for the then packet and 'night boat' service. Cabins adequate to small compared to today as most people only on the DK/DQ one night or on a two night R/T--not luxury cruise boats like today. DQ bath/toilet facilities not expected in all cabins other than the higher tariff ones. Hard to believe that even many of the period ocean liners of the time had relatively small cabins with no bath facilities other than a bowl sink/hot, cold running water. You 'bird bathed' or made a reservation with the bath stewad for your time to bathe. Back then 1st Class meant just that. And don't even expect air-conditioning with ventilation being forced air by trunk fans or air ducts outside. Heat was...well...steam heat. The DQ's early air-conditioning system always a headache with later modifications for improvements. I recall one Kentucky Lake trip on the DQ about 1960 so hot people abandoned their cabins to sleep in deck chairs out on the deck. Ended up like a pajama party. At midnight the temps only dipped to 99. Those were the day and nobody thought a thing about it. Again, what do I know?

R. Dale Flick
Old Coal Haven Landing, Ohio River, Cincinnati

Mike Washenko 03-21-2016 05:35 PM

Dale we ran into the same situation on our first cruise back in summer 1973, it was a Kentucky Lake cruise to. So darn hot at night everyone slept with their door open or out on deck in the chairs or just on the floor. Luckily we were on the sundeck and usually had a nice breeze to cool off.

We had one of the rooms with a sink and non-drinkable water, maids came by twice a day to fill pitchers in your room with water and ice or you could get it from water from the spigot that was about in the middle. Toilet and showers were men on the port side and women on starboard for those rooms lacking facilities.

Kinda fun thinking back about it now.

Judy Patsch 03-21-2016 05:40 PM

Yep, my first trip too
My first trip Aug. 20-23, 1973 room 131, same deal Mike! No bathroom, but hey right across our 'sitting room' was a large 3 stall bathroom/shower!

R. Dale Flick 03-22-2016 05:33 AM

*Air-conditioning/Ice water/Sleep on deck*
Morning, Steamboating colleagues:
Thanks to Judy and Mike for their memories of the 'old days' tripping the DQ in the heat of summer. Again, no fault of the DQ or the company as that's how it was then with nearly all taking it in stride. Dig back in those old logs, diaries, letters on what it was like back in the 'wonderful, romantic' old steamboat days tripping in summer and winter.
A cold weather trip on the DQ remembered by many when they first stepped aboard and inside feeling the steam heat and not air-conditioning.

Lack of private baths, walking down the deck or through the cabin with a robe or pants/shirt pulled on never bothered me. The several water fountains on the deck for pitchers in rooms were the norm as the water in sinks not potable. The water fountains were, if I remember, stainless steel. Social hostesses Marty Stouder and Peg Baker at the start of each trip would clearly remind, inform passengers about the water in a PA announcement and where/how they could get it. Marty Stouder used to joke in her kind way, "And in no time you all will feel like the story in the Bible of Rebecca at the well." A few clever wags would say, "Or baptism in the River Jordan."

Back in the engineroom, starboard side, was the sanitary water testing station. Several times a day Cal Benefel, or somebody else, would take samples of water to do a test using chemicals, dye and litmus paper in vials and flasks. This entered in a special log book. If people think it hot in their cabins then think of the cookhouse crew down below standing over those big ranges cooking, baking. After work they would come up and out on the lower bow deck to rest and cool off. The DQ air-conditioning system had to be totally removed with new installed in 1948. The old system in California used a kind of water spray, forced air. Here they converted to the conventional compression system with coolant I imagine was freon--and even freon now on the no no list by public health for environmental reasons. A few surviving old photos show the DQ/DK in California days docked at Sacramento in the summer with those huge white canvas awnings stretched with lanyard into brass eyelets over the top sundeck in an attempt to keep some semblance of cool in those rooms. Before steaming out the big awnings taken down, rolled and stored until the next trip up to Sacramento.

Some of us, as mentioned on this web, recall the days when there were white porcelain chamber pots under beds in rooms without toilet facilities. The maids, when cleaning rooms, would check and then take the offending recepticles down to dump in the river, wash and return. A lot of this came as a shock to those passengers experienced in 1st Class aboard ocean liners. One lady and man aboard the DQ for the first time [They arrived with a steamer trunk no less] after a recent crossing on the QUEEN MARY [old one] threatened to leave the boat before she even steamed out. Passengers invited them for a drink, talk and in no time they changed their minds, stayed for the trip, returned a number of times loving it. Entertainment was rudimentary but good, clean fun. Now-and-then, one or more passengers would lend their talents being classically trained vocally, instruments, piano that wowed the passengers. Even a political or military notable asked to speak to the passengers after dinner or in the day between meals.

And, as was Capt. Tom Greene's guiding credo, "Hot foods hot. Cold foods cold." Again, what do I know?

R. Dale Flick
Old Coal Haven Landing, Ohio River, Cincinnati

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:39 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
All content on this site is copyright protected and may not be re-used without written permission.