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200 years of steamships in Stockholm

Discussion in 'Everything Else Heritage' started by Dag Bonnedal, Aug 27, 2018.

  1. Dag Bonnedal

    Dag Bonnedal New Member

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    In the summer of 1818 Samuel Owen launched the very first steam boat in Stockholm, Sweden.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Owen

    Being a city on the water steam ships and launches quickly became the backbone of communication in Stockholm and its surroundings. Stockholm still holds one of the most numerous steam fleets in the world and Sunday, 26 August the 200 year anniversary was celebrated with a parade of 12 steam boats and some smaller private launches.

    Utility ships

    The king of them all! The Stockholm city ice breaker Sankt Erik. Built 1915, 2800+1200 hp (aft/fore engines), 4 boilers (2 in service this time). Owned by the Swedish National Maritime Museum, but maintained and operated by a volunteer based society.
    https://sankterik1915.se/

    Steam tug Robert built 1866, 36 hp, coal fired.

    Steam tug Örnen (the Eagle), built 1903, 130 hp, coal fired.

    Passenger ships

    Mariefred, built 1903, 300 hp, coal fired. Probably unique as it has serviced the route Stockholm - Mariefred continuously (now May-Sept.) since it was built 115 years ago. This in spite of two big fires on board in modern times.

    Blidösund, built 1911, 320 hp, coal fired.

    Storskär, built 1911, 560 hp (tripple, ex. Strängnäs Express). Flag ship of the Greater Stockholm Local Transit (SL)! Together with s/s Norrskär (sister of Blidösund, this day on her regular duties) they provide daily regular local transport in the Stockholm archipelago (together with many diesel powered ships).

    Motala Express, built 1895, 360 hp. For 110 years in service on the second biggest lake in Sweden, Vättern. Intentionally built longer than the locks in the Göta Canal, to keep her there. But finally sold, the bow was cut off and she was taken out of her "prison" for a new venue with charter in Stockholm.

    Eidern (named after the duck), almost too small to be a ship. Built 1888, 65 hp, coal fired.


    To be continued...
     

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    Last edited: Aug 27, 2018
    Copper-capped and gwalkeriow like this.
  2. Dag Bonnedal

    Dag Bonnedal New Member

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    some more:

    Passenger Launches
    Different variants of launches were the most numerous commercial steam boats in Sweden, very versatile on all the natural protected waterways all over the country. Some could carry up to 100 passengers, carry lots of goods and many were used as tug boats.

    Gerda, built 1866 (still fully riveted hull, no welding). 8 hp, wood fired.

    Drottningholm, built 1909, 130 hp (tripple). Carries 150 passengers and with a draft of only 1.2 metres, how does she stay upright?

    Frithiof, built 1897, 55 hp. A puffer as you may notice, most of the others have condensers.

    Djurgården 3, built 1897, 55 hp, coal fired. One of the once many steam ferries in Stockholm. Built fully symmetric, with one boiler and one engine driving one propeller in each end. Both propellers always active. Two rudders, steering huts and double sets of lanterns.

    Private Launches
    The first one, with canopy and black hull, one looks old, but I know nothing about it.

    Two more boats: one steam tug and one passenger launch were scheduled for the parade, but did not show up. And there are many more steam boats and private steam launches in the Stockholm area.
     

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  3. MellishR

    MellishR Well-Known Member Friend

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    Some years ago I was participating in a standards working group meeting at what was then Siemens Elena in Solna. One evening our host entertained us on board one of the steam boats. Unfortunately I don't remember its name. Two of us at a time were allowed to visit the engine room. We were very impressed at how the engineer and the captain work together to manoeuvre the boat at the frequent stopping places.

    We heard the following morning that our host had got into big trouble when he got home late that night as that day had been his wedding anniversary.
     
  4. Dag Bonnedal

    Dag Bonnedal New Member

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    It's a long standing tradition on (nearly) all the steam ships that you are welcome in the engine room, if you ask politely. And most of the crew working there are very interested in their job and proud of their ships.
    As you say, being there during the manoeuvrers at the stopping places is very impressive indeed. During this, the enormous torque of the steam engine very clearly shows how it shifts gigantic amounts of water very quickly with the 1.5 meter propeller. This makes these old, heavy ships with relatively low power very versatile at the numerous quick stops, where they just briefly touch the pier with the bow. The whole touch and go is done in 3-4 minutes.
     

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