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Boat cleanliness

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    Boat cleanliness

    I'm starting a new thread here but pasting a comment from another thread about Mike Woodyard's excellent towboat model.

    Towboats especially have always been maintained in a very clean manner, almost to Navy fashion. That is maybe more true today than in the past with the coal smoke, etc. that Dale mentions. On today's towboats a regular cleaning schedule is maintained and done on a watch-by-watch basis as well as weekly items. Some Captains have been known to hide items for the deck crew to "find" during cleaning to check if it is really done (no, I'm not one of those!). Passenger boats today are also much cleaner with cleaner fuels, increased passenger expectation, etc.

    *'Weather paint?' Hmmmmm.*
    Morning, Steamboating colleagues:
    "Weather paint" you say? Never heard of that but I bet our model builder John Fryant knows about it. He surfs/lurks here regularly. As stated, another 'myth' were all those pristine steamboats often seen in some art work of a rather romantic nature etc. With all that coal smoke both on the boats from the stacks and from the shore, that soon disappeared. Back then industrial America ran on anthracite and bituminous coal. Look at many old steamboat photos in/around big cities and you'll see that 'smokey' air. More than one old log book contains entries with "...a dark, smokey night...a wet, heavy night with smoke." When the then QUEEN CITY was launched here at the old 'Cincinnati Marine Ways' she was photographed brand new totally sparkling white with even her sternwheel painted white. That didn't last long. Several accounts then even mention how within a couple of years those magnificent, ornate Gothic long cabins were "dull, dusty, worn out looking." What do I know?

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

    DQ soot

    I learned very quickly not to wear white on the DQ - even though she burned Bunker C, not coal, the daily blowout included fine particles of soot which landed on the chairs on the Sundeck and Texas Bow. I'd take a towel with me the first outdoor sitting session of the day. But she was maintained well in my day, even having the porters polish the brass 'key doorholders' and knobs weekly, along with all the interior brass.