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SPRAGUE Question

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Old 01-26-2008, 01:00 PM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: I presenbtly live in Covington , LA.
Posts: 673
Default A " Work Boat " !

Greetings From New Orleans ,
Folks no matter how hard some of us attempt to " GLAMORIZE " the river and the boats that worked on the river , those same boats were there for ONE reason ; to work and make money for the parent company . Consequently when those same work boats do not make money or out live their Cost Effective lives they are either scraped or in the case of the Sprague , donated to some organization . Unfortunately , this also applies to the the Str. Delta Queen and if you don't think I am right , just simply ask yourself , what as Majestic America Line done to save the Delta Queen ???? Its all about making money and when a tool or a work boat or even a romantic notion does not make money , then the " Bean Counters " in corporate America will eventually win out inorder to both compete and survive in this culture . Sorry folks this is not the Land of " OZ " but corporate America !
Smoothe Sailing !
Ted Davisson
Originally Posted by Jim Reising View Post
The other day I was looking through the Standar Oil of New Jersey photo collection, specifically pictures of the SPRAGUE. In the collection were pictures of the boat in the shipyard in 1947 at Baton Rouge I believe. Apparently the boat had cracked its paddlewheel shaft and they were repairing it by thermite welding. Exactly what is "Thermite Welding"? Is it still used today? And did the cracked shaft, eventhough it was repaired, lead Standard Oil to retire the boat earlier than planned anticipating perhaps that the shaft was weakened and therefore subject to failure? I would imagine that the cost of having a new shaft forged and machined would go a long way toward paying for a new diesel boat.
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