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Re: Drysdale Pump

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  • Finishedwith Engines
    I believe that one of the four Drysdale pumps that kept the Mary afloat during her heydays still exists in the after engineroom. The other three were in the
    Message 1 of 34 , Oct 4, 2004
      I believe that one of the four Drysdale pumps that kept the Mary afloat during her heydays still exists in the after engineroom. The other three were in the Hotel Service Generator Room, #4 Boiler Room, and the Forward
      Engineroom respectively. The one in the FER was called the emergency bilge pump because a steel cylinder enclosed it entirely and would act as a diving bell, protecting the electric motor, even if that engine space had been completely flooded. Used mainly for pumping bilges they could be utilized to pump ballast as well.


      These machines were vertical pumps with their electrical drive motors on top of the casing. (On other ships some pumps were steam-driven). The shaft spun an impeller at the base. Impeller pumps are designed for high volume but pump at extremely low pressures and their suction pressures are even worse.

      (To the uninitiated, there is no such thing as negative pressure. Zero pressure is a vacuum which will support a head or column of 30 inches of mercury or 34 feet of water - both are equal to 14.695 psi atmosphere or a head of 200 miles of air). As a point of interest each of the Queen Mary's four LP (low pressure) turbines developed 40,000 horsepower on 8 to 10
      inches of mercury or 10 psi below normal atmospheric ressure.

      Back to the Drydale pump: The extra suction needed to pump a bilge dry was supplemented by a pair of pistons. Just below the pump's drive motor was an enormous brass crown wheel which changed the power transmission direction by means of a worm/crank shaft that operated twin pistons which created extra suction. All these moving parts needed lots of oil . . .

      In March 1966 a bilgediver on the 12- 4 morning watch neglected to do a simple maintenance check on the Drysdale bilge pump in #4 Boiler Pump. After seeing the devastating result, Mr. John Watt, the Senior Second of the 4-8 watch, had these comments: "Sabotage! The Viet Cong are aboard the Queen Mary!"

      Mr. Watt became the Mary's Chief Engineer and acted in that capacity on her very last voyage.

      This incident inspired the following ballad.

      THE SONG OF THE DRYSDALE PUMP

      Now the Drysdale pump
      was an upright pump,
      it could pump your bilge all day.
      Its impeller would spin round and round
      while its pistons chugged-chugged up and down,
      driven by a wheel called the big brass crown
      from a worm shaft with end play.
      ]
      Ah! this marvellous pump
      had a happy thump-thump,
      a maritime roundelay,
      and engineers loved its rhythmic pound
      as its pistons chugged-chugged up and down,
      driven by a wheel called the big brass crown
      until came that certain day.

      Such a wonderful pump
      was the Drysdale pump,
      but when oil in its sump went way, way,
      down, there came this most unwelcome sound
      when the pistons slug-slugged up and down,
      and a squeal from the wheel called the big brass crown
      made the worm writhe in dismay.

      What a troubled pump
      was this Drysdale pump
      with its smoke and sparks display,
      for bearings were being crushed and ground
      to torture pistons grunting up and down,
      breaking all the teeth from the poor brass crown
      which spat chunks every way.

      "Whit has happened tae ma pump?
      Och, ma puir Drysdale pump!
      Did ye not get yer dram this day?"
      Groaned the Scots engineer when he found
      that the pistons weren't going up and down,
      and that molten mass once was the big brass crown,
      with its worm shaft red like clay.

      So if you want to pump
      with a Drysdale pump,
      use plenty of oil, engineers say.
      The pump's efficiency will astound
      you when the pistons slide-slide up and down,
      keeping cadence with the big brass crown
      while the worm shaft spins all day.

      - Francis Kerr Young






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    • Bridget E
      Hi Frank, Thanks for responding! I m interested in truth rather than fiction. If someone knew how a person really died, it would help blast away all of the
      Message 34 of 34 , Oct 24, 2004
        Hi Frank,
        Thanks for responding! I'm interested in truth rather than fiction. If someone knew how a person really died, it would help blast away all of the hoopla that the ship promotes.
        In regards to you not getting any responses from the forward engine room, for myself anyway, sometimes it is all so technical that it is hard to keep up..but I still read every post and I am sorry if I didn't respond..I think some posts just take me back to the ship, leave me in a sort of awe, and it's hard to say anything. (If this makes any sense) I have such envy,admiration and respect for those that worked aboard the ship. With all of our advances in technology, I very much think we forgot to stop and embrace some of the truely good things we once had, rather than find better,faster, now-now-now products.
        By the way, how did you know my nickname? lol...

        Bridget

        finishedwithengines <finishedwithengines@...> wrote:


        Hi Biddy,

        Well my pc is up and running again with a lot of new software.

        No, I didn't know John Pedder, the bilgediver, personally. You see,
        there was still a class system in these days where officers did not
        mix with the ratings. I may have seen him unknowingly on Captain's
        Inspection when junior engineer officers trailed around behind the
        Chief or Staff Engineer to check for stowaways, untidiness, or safety
        hazards in the engineroom ratings' living area and also in little
        frequented areas that came under the engineroom department's
        jurisdiction. Then again, once a week, a junior engineer was
        delegated to go to their mess room to record any complaints about
        their food, Pedder may have been there at that time.

        During my tenure on the Queen Mary I became very knowledgeable on the
        Stone watertight door system. It is through this experience I can
        quite honestly say that the late Mr. Pedder was unlikely to have been
        crushed to death by a watertight door. True, he died there, but was
        probably suffocated, with perhaps a bruise or two on his body. No
        broken bones, no squeezed intestines. I could of course, go into
        detail, but the members seem to be more focussed on imagined
        apparitions and appear to be quite uninterested in technical matters
        since my description of the Forward Engine Room, a place that no
        longer exists in its origin state, failed to inspire comment.

        Frank




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