de Kerbrech's Down Amongst the Black Gang---A Really Good Read


William Oakes

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Mar 6, 2020
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I am reading a really good book, Down Amongst the Black Gang by author, Richard P. De Kerbrech.
This book details the lives of stokers, greasers, firemen and how God-awful, miserable their jobs were.
If you have any interest in the propulsion systems of the Olympic Class liners, than this book is for you.
It is written from an engineers perspective with lots of diagrams, pictures and images.
It goes into detail on such things as how scotch boilers are constructed and function.
Furnace construction, steam generation, etc.
This book covers some great information that I am learning for the first time.
I give it 2 thumbs up!
Down Amoungst the black gang.JPG
 
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Mike Spooner

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I to give Richard book the thumps up. Written by a true marine engineer apprentice indeed. Easy person to talk to as well.
 
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William Oakes

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For example, at the bottom of each Scotch Boiler is an 11 by 15 inch oval shaped manhole.
This manhole was the means of egress for the man working inside the boiler as she was being constructed, riveted, bolted etc.
It is also the access point for climbing into the boiler to make repairs, wire brush the insides of the steam tubes,, scrape the boilers to remove scale, etc.
How many men today could even squeeze through an opening 11 x 15 inches????
 

William Oakes

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Mar 6, 2020
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I to give Richard book the thumps up. Written by a true marine engineer apprentice indeed. Easy person to talk to as well.
Yes, he makes everything very understandable, in straightforward, plain language that a layman like myself can understand.
I am thoroughly enjoying this book and learning some great new things about these ships.
Some of the photos are extraordinary!
 

Mike Spooner

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Sep 21, 2017
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Yes, he makes everything very understandable, in straightforward, plain language that a layman like myself can understand.
I am thoroughly enjoying this book and learning some great new things about these ships.
Some of the photos are extraordinary!
If you like his book, have you read his book: RMS TITANIC 1909-12 Olympic class Owners Workshop Manual. Again written by a true marine engineer. Also included in the book, David Hutchings is another served shipwright apprentice to. A great book.
 
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William Oakes

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Mar 6, 2020
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If you like his book, have you read his book: RMS TITANIC 1909-12 Olympic class Owners Workshop Manual. Again written by a true marine engineer. Also included in the book, David Hutchings is another served shipwright apprentice to. A great book.
Thank You. I have not.
But, I will.
 

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