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Life at Sea

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  • Life at Sea

    Note: This is an attempt at getting all the sailing members of Xbhp under a common thread to share their experiences and photographs as a means of reliving the moments and also to spread awareness about Life at sea to the land lubbers. I will start with a brief introduction about Sailing and Life at sea and then let the pictures do the talking. As more and more people pitch in we get more inputs including the technical and navigational side of Merchant Navy.

    In 2006, when I joined my first ship as a junior engineer, I was distraught and missing home. My Fourth Engineer had then said, " Paanch saab, jahaz ka paani aur jahaz ka paisa har kisi ko waapas yahin le aata hain." Six years hence I m still at sea, still a sailor, probably for many more years to come.

    What is Merchant Navy?

    Well for starters, merchant navy is a field that involves transporting goods and passengers across the world through seas and oceans in large ocean going vessels. There are various types of vessels involved in this like Gas carriers, chemical tankers, Oil tankers,Bulk carriers, General cargo ships etc.

    These vessels are run and managed by a team of sailing officers and crew under the Master of the vessel. Two main departments of a Ships sailing staff are The Deck and the Engine Department. The Deck Department comprises of the Navigating officers responsible for the Navigation of the ship and the cargo. The Engine Department comprises of the Engineers who are responsible for the operation and maintenance of the ships machinery.
    Apart from these two departments there also is a Saloon department that comprises of the Chief cook and Stewards.

    The Master is the overall incharge of the ship. A Deck officer typically starts his career as a Deck cadet and works his way up the hierarchy by accumulating sea time and clearing exams conducted by the administration (Mercantile Marine Department in India) becoming Third officer, Second Officer, Chief Officer and finally earning his four stripes as the Master.

    An Engineer starts his career as a Junior Engineer(also called a fifth engineer) and works his way up appearing for exams and accumulating sea time, becoming a fourth engineer, third engineer, Second Engineer and finally earning his four stripes as the Chief Engineer of the Ship.

    Well that in a nutshell is about Merchant Navy. Ofcourse it is much more, but I dont want this to be too long and tiring. Those who want to read more on the topic can go through the following links.

    Marine Insight : Maritime News, Maritime Careers, Maritime Jobs, Maritime Matters, Maritime Discussions, Cruise Industry, Offshore Industry, and Maritime Law
    Merchant Navy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I had penned down my thoughts years ago when I had started off in my blog. Those who are interested can go through it.

    Now I ll let Pictures do some talking. There would be many more seasoned Sailors here at XBhp, much more experienced than me. I request them to come and share there Pictures and experiences here.

    My first and second vessel, a Chemical Tanker


    One of my ships (an oil tanker) at the Colombo Dockyard


    My fourth ship, a 160000 tonne Bulk carrier propelled by a 22000 Bhp MAN B&W Engine



    My Fifth ship, again a 170000 tonne Bulk Carrier.



    Breaking through the Canadian Ice



    For those who love Pistons and connecting rods, during an Auxiliary Engine Decarb....




    PS. Mods, I searched for a similar thread, but could nt find one. Hence started this thread. In case one exists, please merge it.

    Cheers

    Ride Safe
    Its not always about speed.

    Avenger 220 DTSI

    -----------------------------------------------------

    Blabberings

    Call of the Ocean

  • #2
    Off Topic Approved
    Advice is a form of nostalgia.
    Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

    Antz Travelz!! | South India Exploration Ride | Leh Triplog (Work in progress)

    Comment


    • #3
      Welcome Aboard Vibbs!!!

      Thanks for sharing this useful information with us!

      I am sure there are many more MN veterans and aspirants who would like to share their thoughts here

      Looking forward to some more pictures and gyan from you
      (Been There Done That) x 3.25

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by antz.bin View Post
        Off Topic Approved
        Thanks for approving the topic Antz.bin

        Originally posted by sunilg View Post
        Welcome Aboard Vibbs!!!

        Thanks for sharing this useful information with us!

        I am sure there are many more MN veterans and aspirants who would like to share their thoughts here

        Looking forward to some more pictures and gyan from you
        Thanks Sunilg. I hope more mariners join and share their views and experiences. As for me, I ll be adding on to this thread regularly for benefit of any one who would like to know more about the field. Will be adding more pics for you all to see. Let me dig them out.

        Cheers
        Its not always about speed.

        Avenger 220 DTSI

        -----------------------------------------------------

        Blabberings

        Call of the Ocean

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi Vibbs,

          Nice to see your thread . I am a Master Mariner . I was sailing with the mainfleet Oil Tankers but just 3 years ago i shifted to Offshore . I am now serving onboard on an FPSO in Brazil. Hope you like the pictures attached .

          Its really nice to see bikers and Sailors on one thread.
          I ride a RETB.


          Cheers

          Nash
          "Be ashamed to die unless you have ridden a VICTORY"

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by vibbs View Post
            Thanks for approving the topic Antz.bin



            Thanks Sunilg. I hope more mariners join and share their views and experiences. As for me, I ll be adding on to this thread regularly for benefit of any one who would like to know more about the field. Will be adding more pics for you all to see. Let me dig them out.

            Cheers
            I would like to have one question regarding recruitment in merchant navy. Some training institute for merchant navy came during placements in our college last year. It was open for all, except civil engineering. Are civil engineers banned from entering navy? I guess all these institutes give 6 months or 1 year training and the initial licence to sail. Can't civil engineering graduates do the course and get the licence? Is there any institute who give training for civil engineers too to join merchant navy?
            An˽Adventurer˽of˽Different˽Sort

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by nashrider View Post
              Hi Vibbs,

              Nice to see your thread . I am a Master Mariner . I was sailing with the mainfleet Oil Tankers but just 3 years ago i shifted to Offshore . I am now serving onboard on an FPSO in Brazil. Hope you like the pictures attached .

              Its really nice to see bikers and Sailors on one thread.
              I ride a RETB.


              Cheers

              Nash
              Thanks and welcome sir. I m an engineer now appearing for my Class II exams. Although I almost have sea time required for appearing Chief's Ticket.
              Yeah its great to see bikers and sailors together. Hope more join us.

              Originally posted by vickks View Post
              I would like to have one question regarding recruitment in merchant navy. Some training institute for merchant navy came during placements in our college last year. It was open for all, except civil engineering. Are civil engineers banned from entering navy? I guess all these institutes give 6 months or 1 year training and the initial licence to sail. Can't civil engineering graduates do the course and get the licence? Is there any institute who give training for civil engineers too to join merchant navy?

              One can enter into merchant navy as an officer in either of the two departments ie deck or engineering.
              Since the institutes came to an engineering college, I assume it would be for GME course. Its a pre sea course of one year duration to enable Mechanical Engineers to join sea. You need to be an engineering graduate in either mechanical engineering or naval architecture. Only then you can do the course.
              Marine engineering is a core mechanical field. Many of the important subjects a mechanical engineer learns during his engineering is put into practical use here. Internal combustion engines, AC and Ref., compressors, various pumps, motors, alternators etc apart from some ship specific systems. And the experience gained is hands on.

              It is hence only understandable that Mechanical engineers are preferred. Electrical and electronic engineers can join but as electrical officers.

              Then there are Graduates in marine engineering. Again a four year course dedicated to Marine Engineering.
              No other engineering graduate can join merchant navy as a marine engineer either directly or after doing the one year pre sea course.

              Certain institues have a two year course for diploma holders in Mechanical,ship building,electrical, electrical and electronics,marine engineering etc. after which they can join merchant navy.

              Anybody else who wants to become a marine engineer can join merchant navy as a rating and then complete 36 months sea time (I m not very sure of the time) and necessary documentations to appear for exams conducted by the administration. Again I m not very sure if in India such candidates are allowed to appear for Foreign going certificates they are allowed only near coastal vessels I think. Countries like UK do allow though and I have seen such candidates getting tickets from there only.

              Ofcourse any graduate or XII pass out can join Merchant Navy as a deck officer if he has 55% marks in PCM in XII standard after completing the Deck Cadet training course conducted by various DG approved training institutes. There after completing the stipulated sea time required as a cadet and clearing exams by the administration, he can go on to become a deck officer and finally a master.
              This may have an age limit though and engineering graduates may need to see that they have not overshot the limit if they are to join the deck department.

              (I m not from the deck department so my knowledge on eligibility to deck side is very limited, Masters and other deck officers here would be in a better position to explain the deck side eligibility criteria)


              In your college, I m not very sure as to how they were calling all branches of engineering. As per my knowledge it is only Mechanical, Naval architecture and Marine Engineering graduates who can join the pre sea course for Engine department. A civil engineer cant join as an engineer directly.Technically he may join as a rating and then complete the long stipulated sea time before finally being able to appear for exams. I dont think anybody has done that till now though as it is waste of time and working as a rating after completing your engineering, may not be the most rewarding experience either.

              I hope it is clear enough. Else let me know.

              Cheers
              Ride safe
              Its not always about speed.

              Avenger 220 DTSI

              -----------------------------------------------------

              Blabberings

              Call of the Ocean

              Comment


              • #8
                ^^ Yes, I do get it! So me, a civil engg don't really have a viable career option as a mariner.
                An˽Adventurer˽of˽Different˽Sort

                Comment


                • #9
                  what abt electrical engineers.
                  sigpic

                  Tyre Sizes _ Spark Plugs

                  Headlight Focus _ Fork Oils

                  All India xBhp Couple Riders Thread

                  Ashtavinayak + Shirdi
                  Purandar
                  Raigad
                  Dapoli
                  Aurangabad
                  Kaas Plateu & Thoseghar Waterfalls
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by vickks View Post
                    ^^ Yes, I do get it! So me, a civil engg don't really have a viable career option as a mariner.
                    You may not be able to join as an engineer, but you defenitely can join the deck side. Just look out for the upper age limit. Some institutes have it at 20 years. So any engineer is effectively over the limit. But there are institutes who accept upto 25 years at the commencement of course.

                    Check this :: Welcome To AEMTC ::

                    You can join the Deck side bro if you are so much interested to join sea. Only thing your civil engineering goes waste as you could ve joined without it. Plus your peers in the deck side would have a 4 years head start against you assuming you join the course immediately after completing your engineering.

                    Let me tell you Life out at sea is good if one takes an informed decision after weighing the pros and cons equally. But all good things come at a cost. So you need to be very sure that you are OK with the negatives. Most people who are lured to it due to money get disappointed. Only the tough and the ones who love the life can survive, not to mention the amount of support one may require from his family.

                    Originally posted by princesirohi View Post
                    what abt electrical engineers.
                    Prince, Electrical engineers can join as electrical officers. Earlier they could go on to become Chief Engineers but I m not sure if that's possible today. Will search around and let you know. But you definitely can become an electrical officer.

                    Of course one has to do a course for it. Check this link, thats how my firm recruits.

                    :: Welcome To AEMTC ::

                    Cheers.
                    Its not always about speed.

                    Avenger 220 DTSI

                    -----------------------------------------------------

                    Blabberings

                    Call of the Ocean

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      thanks.. so after completing the four months course, i join as trainee electrical engr.
                      1) is there a job guarentee or just a training course.
                      2) what are the experience requirements of asistant electrival officer and than electrical officer.

                      what is the salary of trainee, assistant and finallyy electrical officer.
                      sigpic

                      Tyre Sizes _ Spark Plugs

                      Headlight Focus _ Fork Oils

                      All India xBhp Couple Riders Thread

                      Ashtavinayak + Shirdi
                      Purandar
                      Raigad
                      Dapoli
                      Aurangabad
                      Kaas Plateu & Thoseghar Waterfalls
                      Purandar

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        MY childhood friend is also in Merchant Navy. Nice & interesting pics Vibbs.
                        Whats there in a signature?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by princesirohi View Post
                          thanks.. so after completing the four months course, i join as trainee electrical engr.
                          1) is there a job guarentee or just a training course.
                          2) what are the experience requirements of asistant electrival officer and than electrical officer.

                          what is the salary of trainee, assistant and finallyy electrical officer.
                          You are welcome prince. The link I pasted is from Anglo eastern maritime training center. Anglo eastern ship managment is a Hong Kong based company which is among the largest employers of Indian seafarers in the world. Since this institute is being run by them, one should ideally be posted by them on their vessels. Thats how it happens with Deck cadets and Junior engineers. Same should be the case with electrical officers too. But i am not sure about that.
                          Promotion I guess depends on the feedback received from the ship. Basically on what the Chief engineer thinks. Ideally two contracts on each post should do. But it may be more even.

                          Originally posted by Enthusiastic View Post
                          MY childhood friend is also in Merchant Navy. Nice & interesting pics Vibbs.
                          Thanks enthusiastic. Will try and post some more.
                          Its not always about speed.

                          Avenger 220 DTSI

                          -----------------------------------------------------

                          Blabberings

                          Call of the Ocean

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            A few more pics

                            Snowy Amsterdam



                            Guangzhou Shipyard China



                            Blue seas




                            Amsterdam



                            Snowy Ijmuiden



                            Sunset

                            Its not always about speed.

                            Avenger 220 DTSI

                            -----------------------------------------------------

                            Blabberings

                            Call of the Ocean

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              This pic below is not owned by me. Source of the image is Emma Maersk? s Wartsila-Sulzer Super Ship Engine ? Part 2 | gCaptain - Maritime & Offshore



                              This is apparently among the largest reciprocating engines of the world. The link that I have shared contains more information about this behemoth, but for starters I ll share important specifications of it.

                              Maximum power : 108920 BHP @ 102 rpm.
                              Maximum Torque: 5,608,312 lb/ft @ 102 rpm.
                              Weight :2300 Tonnes
                              Bore : Just under 38 inches
                              Stroke : Just over 98 inches
                              Displacement :25,480 liters for the 14 cylinder version



                              Ships around the world are mainly propelled by large two stroke engines burning Heavy Fuel oil. In case of certain special classed vessels like LNG ships steam propulsion is used where in the cargo boil off is used to fire the boiler and the steam drives a turbine coupled to the propeller shaft. Dual fuel engines which run on both the gas and heavy oil have been developed and are also being used. Apart from these certain ships have electrical propulsion too.

                              Electrical power is supplied by auxilliary engines or turbo generators coupled to alternators. Shaft generators coupled to Main Engine or Power take out units are also used in certain cases for power generation while the Main Engine is running at or around NCR.

                              Some of the engines I worked on. Sorry for the image quality, they are pretty old pics and those days did nt have good camera with me.

                              A MAN B&W 6S60 MC. A super long stroke slow speed turbocharged engine coupled directly to the propeller.



                              Another view of the same engine. The Turbocharger can be seen from here.



                              Both these images are just of the cylinder head platform. There are two more levels below comprising of the Under Piston area & scavenge manifold and the bottom platform where the crankcase doors are located.


                              In this Pic you can see the two lower levels.





                              This is a view from top of a SULZER 7RTA 58




                              Both these engines that I shared are pretty ordinary sized engines in the marine world. One may even call them small. But at 12000 and 9000 Bhp still pretty huge for us folks.
                              Its not always about speed.

                              Avenger 220 DTSI

                              -----------------------------------------------------

                              Blabberings

                              Call of the Ocean

                              Comment

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