owner of Leviathan

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wsmcycle
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by wsmcycle » Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:24 pm

yes that is great to see the K engine. It sounds just like mine. I tried to observe as many plumbing features as i could but i think i will need to grab some stills from the video. Thanks so much for posting the link. What a shame if it ended up as junk somewhere. Things done in obscurity! Had the world just known. Gosh, i hope she is alive somewhere. Kind of makes me sick.
LIGHT THE FIRE!!
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TahoeSteam
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by TahoeSteam » Wed Feb 17, 2016 7:16 am

Ron, thanks I'll try to remember that for next time!

Thank you gentlemen for the kind words. The taping was all my dad's, I just edited out the feet and blurry sections :D

Wsmcycle
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Bob Cleek
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by Bob Cleek » Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:03 pm

Leviathan's story makes me want to cry. She was berthed right near me in San Rafael and Sweeney and his two then-grammar-school-aged sons would be down working on her every weekend. He told me she was the last surviving hull from Teddy Roosevelt's "Great White Fleet," a Navy launch off of one of the dreadnaughts. The "cabin" was an accretion of several generations with a plywood pilot house on top which seems to have been replaced with a nicer job in the videos. Back then, she still had her bronze deck gun mount on the foredeck. So it goes.
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TahoeSteam
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by TahoeSteam » Thu Feb 18, 2016 4:54 am

She still had her deck mount when she was in the boatyard. Her cabin and pilot house were quite nice at the end. Its a sad end to the flagship of the fleet.
~Wesley Harcourt~
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DetroiTug
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by DetroiTug » Thu Feb 18, 2016 5:22 pm

One thing I noticed about that cabin arrangement, if there was a fire in the engine room there was no way out of the pilot house? Maybe through a window?

It's disappointing to see these vessels disappear. Surely someone salvaged the engine at least.

-Ron
Bob Cleek
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by Bob Cleek » Thu Feb 18, 2016 7:29 pm

A lot of good boats "went under the chain saw" during the Recession. People ran out of money, they languished in the yards, half-restored, and were eventually broken up. Yard operators are a heartless lot. They have to be if they want to stay in business.

About ten years ago or so, a friend of mine who runs a marine salvage company, asked me if I wanted a steam boat he'd raised from where it had sunk at its dock behind a house in Bel Marin Keys in Marin Co. CA. At that time, although being quite knowledgeable about maintaining and restoring traditional yachts and workboats for all my adult life, I didn't know a tenth of what I know about steam today. (Which still is a spit in the wind compared to the "regulars" in this forum!) I was the only guy he knew, however, who knew anything about steam, as I'd restored a large antique working steam yacht model that is on display at the yacht club we belong to.

The 25' or so boat was apparently an open wooden lifeboat conversion of advanced age. She'd rotted out extensively and, ultimately, her plank fastenings had let go and planks sprung and she sank behind the owner's home. The story was that he'd died and his widow left the boat to sit, and then to sink, and the homeowners' association or some authority told her she had to get it out of there. The boat had been on the bottom for a considerable period of time, considering the marine growth and rust on her. The hull was not salvageable. My buddy, looking to save a few bucks on breaking her up and paying the landfill charges, asked if I wanted her for the steam plant. He had her on a trailer and would deliver it to my place outside of Petaluma, where I have my workshop building and plenty of land to dump (another) old boat. I went down and took a look, not knowing exactly what I was looking at as far as her steam plant went. There was no cover on the boiler, with the tubes covered in mud and barnacles. The engine, or what was left of it, looked to be half disassembled and a lump of frozen rusty parts. I realized then that my marriage of long-standing would likely not survive my wife's waking up to a hulk of that size on the property and politely declined the offer. Today, I might have taken a closer look at the piles of metal in her muddy bilge, but probably would have come to the same conclusion. My friend found somebody who did actually take it off his hands, so I guess there was something in it for somebody. I always wondered who the guy was who lived in Bel Marin Keys and owned the boat and what she actually had in her in her better days. Anybody here know?
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TahoeSteam
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Re: owner of Leviathan

Post by TahoeSteam » Fri Feb 19, 2016 3:01 am

I'm willing to bet Rodger McGuire would know the answer to that. He seems to know every obscure boat and old guy in California.

Ron,
Your assessment is correct. The only ways out were through the cabin, or out a window. Could have posed an issue if there were any trouble with the burner right beneath your feet.
~Wesley Harcourt~
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