Current state of Queen Mary Bankruptcy

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Timothy Trower

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Ah, how lovely! Thanks for posting those -- I appreciate it.
 

Ryan Thompson

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Dec 6, 2005
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Wow. That thing is ugly. :|

Disney likes to mutilate famous things they buy. They cut a bunch of holes in the Spruce Goose. The museum in McMinnville, Oregon where its housed now has cut 2 large holes in it to let people walk inside it. Its obnoxious.

Question: Which dry dock did they move the QM into when it got to Long Beach? I am looking at Google Earth. I bet its still there.

And yes, the propeller box is visible. The photo is probably a couple years old at the most so I am guessing its still there. Google Earth says they update their images every two or three years. Also, is it just me or does the forward funnel in the Google Earth image look more vertical than the other two?
 
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Kyle Johnstone

Guest
Hi Ryan

Yes the propeller box is still there. It's not going anywhere, I'm sure. The first two of the above three photos were taken last month, Oct. 19 2007.

The drydock that the Queen Mary went into (the last one she went into, 40 years ago) was at the Long Beach Naval Shipyard, which has been decomissioned.
 

Jim Hathaway

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Dec 18, 2004
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>>IW, the propeller box was there pre-Disney<<
I will agree on that-I was at a Titanic function about 1974 and it was there then.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I rarely see a copy of "Voyager" but I'll check with an in-town friend to see if I can locate that copy. Sounds interesting!<<

Keep in mind that I may have been reading too much into the photo. It was...if I recall correctly...taken when the ship was tied to the quaywall, and not in the drydock. The article itself is still worthwhile because it gives a good snapshot of the fisaco the various tennants have made of the attraction. It also gives a good and sobering overview of the material condition of the ship which, unfortunately, is very poor.
 
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Kyle Johnstone

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>Keep in mind that I may have been reading too much into the photo. It was...if I recall correctly...taken when the ship was tied to the quaywall, and not in the drydock.

Hi Michael,

I'm pretty sure this event was sometime in the '90s. The Queen hasn't seen a drydock since she first arrived in Long Beach nearly forty years ago...
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I'm pretty sure this event was sometime in the '90s.<<

Actually, it was when the ship was being "reconditioned"...if you can call it that...for her current role. The funnels were missing in the photo I saw.
 

Steve Olguin

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Mar 31, 2005
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A very historical week for the Queen Mary just concluded. The future of the ship seems brighter than before (except for the rumored NFL stadium).


A done deal
Completion leaves questions about who is behind $43M buyout, development plans
By Wendy Thomas Russell, Staff writer

LONG BEACH - For the first time in nearly 15 years, the company that leases the Queen Mary changed hands Tuesday. But who will end up developing the valuable property around the ship - and for what - remains strikingly unclear.
Using money from a variety of lenders and investors, a development company known as Save the Queen paid $43 million to buy the lease from Queen's Seaport Development Inc., which declared bankruptcy two years ago to escape mounting debt.

The rest of the story:

http://origin.presstelegram.com/news/ci_7392757



QM group plans $6M refit
Save the Queen plans to upgrade ship's rooms and kitchen. Its proposals for surrounding 45 acres aren't clear.
By Paul Eakins, Staff writer

LONG BEACH - The new operators of the Queen Mary have clear plans for renovating the 71-year-old ship by investing $6 million in it over the next 18 months, they said Wednesday.
But the future of the surrounding 55 acres of land, 45 of which can be developed, and the city's role in the new effort to restore one of Long Beach's most recognizable - and to many the most disappointing - tourism investments is still uncertain, the operator and city officials said Wednesday during a news conference aboard the Queen Mary.

For the rest of the story:

http://www.presstelegram.com/newss/ci_7400585



Long Beach Floats Queen Mary as NFL Stadium Site
Friday, November 9, 2007, by Eric/ Curbed.com

The suits are blocking and tackling over how the Queen Mary hotel, permadocked in Long Beach, might be pitched as a floating pad for rowdy football fans. From the LB Telegram:

Long Beach would afford a slightly more aesthetic location with its picturesque ocean vistas, as well as a slightly more comforting ambiance with the gaggle of restaurants and other forms of entertainment in the area.... "Wow, isn't this great? A football stadium near the Queen Mary. Finally, we're doing something right in this town."


http://la.curbed.com/archives/2007/11/nfl_smackdown_l.php
 
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Kyle Johnstone

Guest
>Actually, it was when the ship was being "reconditioned"...if you can call it that...for her current role. The funnels were missing in the photo I saw.

My bad, sorry.
I jumped to the conclusion that the photo would have been of the last time the ol' gal had herself scraped and scrubbed...

Ahhh... a brand new stadium...
Long Beach can cough up the money for that, but not for a coat of paint for the Queen Mary, their "icon"
 

Sean Hankins

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May 15, 2004
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The funnels are definitely replicas although they are good ones and have held up well. The main difference is that the originals were riveted where the new ones have a smooth appearance.

Even with her machinery removed the Queen can be towed a short distance granted she has no serious structural problems. If you've seen the book 'God Saved the Queen" there are pictures of the ship being towed (more like nudged along by tugs) from Pier E to her berth at Pier J after her machinery had been removed.

The biggest problem in drydocking the ship is that the closest facility, the Long Beach Naval Drydock, was filled in a few years ago and its doubtful that the ship could be towed out of the harbor without a serious amount of work.

The Yarrow Project would be wonderful but so far nobody has backed it up financially.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>and its doubtful that the ship could be towed out of the harbor without a serious amount of work.<<

More like ballesting. With all the heavy machinary removed from below, the centre of gravity would have gone nowhere but up. Not a good thing if you wish to avoid potentially embarrassing "oopsies" like capsizing!

That $6 million for the ship is a nice start, but it's going to take a lot more then that to deal with the problems of corrosion.
 

Steve Olguin

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Mar 31, 2005
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>>>That $6 million for the ship is a nice start, but it's going to take a lot more then that to deal with the problems of corrosion.<<<

I think that the $6 million will be spent refurbishing public spaces. The group that has been brought on to run the hotel operations is planning on updating the hotel rooms, soundproofing, replacement of non-vintage fixtures, etc. I think if they can start to make a profit, more upgrades will come down the line.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I think if they can start to make a profit, more upgrades will come down the line.<<

I hope so but I just hope they don't end up putting the cart before the horse on this. All the flashy and showy refurbishments in the world don't do you a lot of good if people are falling through holes in the bulkheads or the decks.
 

Sean Hankins

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May 15, 2004
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"More like ballesting. With all the heavy machinary removed from below, the centre of gravity would have gone nowhere but up."

Not just ballasting, a lot of structural integrity work as it's not just a matter of weighing the ship down. As some have said, drilling mud was poured into the double bottom to try and compensate for the loss of machinery which only made up for a fraction of it. The other major problem though is that almost every water tight bulkhead has been compromised, especially in the areas where the power train was. This would need to be fixed as well if any serious move outside the harbour is ever attempted.

A hull that hasnt seen a drydock since the late 60s with no water tight integrity = instant artificial reef.

"All the flashy and showy refurbishments in the world don't do you a lot of good if people are falling through holes in the bulkheads or the decks."

You ain't kidding and some of the worst signs of metal fatigue are on the lifeboat davits and Sun Deck which was redone a few years ago with a questionable method of restoration that may have done more harm than good.
 

Joe Russo

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Apr 10, 2006
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Seems like if she absolutely needed to be in drydock, it might make more sense to build a temporary cofferdam around her and reinforce the trusses that she rests on. Again this would take more than $6 million.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Sean, if my read of the Voyage article is correct, the lifeboats themselves have holes in them and are structurally unsound.

What Joe mentions about a cofferdam may well have to go beyond the temporary. There's some very serious talk of doing just this with the USS Texas battleship which is the only surviving superdreadnaught from World War One. The problem they've been dealing with is corrosion below the waterline which has started to come back...leaks and all...despite a drydocking about ten years ago.

The proposal I read last year in Sea Classics magazine would have the ship in a permanent drydock so that salt water corrosion and leakage would no longer be a concern. My bet is that ultimately, a similar containment will not only have to be built around the Queen Mary, but a number of other museum ships as well.
 

Sean Hankins

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May 15, 2004
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Mike, that very true. The approach to repairing the lifeboats has been a patch and paint one with metal plates screwed or stuck over the holes and then painted over (Even though the paint on a lot of the boats is flaking off). The joints of the davits themselves where the moving parts are located look to be in serious need of repair.

I've seen some suggestions that a mold could be made of one of the lifeboats so that fiberglass replicas could be made to replace the originals which would go to museums before more they become a total loss.

"The proposal I read last year in Sea Classics magazine would have the ship in a permanent drydock so that salt water corrosion and leakage would no longer be a concern."

I've seen that as well and it may be the best solution. The only another possibility I've read might be a floating drydock but I doubt the ship is stable enough for that.