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A VS Cash Cow
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The Pin Wreck.

Portland Shallow Unknowns.

It was a grey and overcast Saturday morning as I drove into Weymouth when driving down the hill the phone lit up and I answered to find Paul Bailey asking when I was due at the quayside, about 20mins I said, no problems came the answer we’ll wait for you. I finally got into the car park and began to throw my kit onto Scimitar and hello’s all round. It was good to put a few names to faces and then it began……………

Normally it takes a while when you meet new people before you feel able to rip the piss, well I think the total elapsed time with Paul Bailey RossC DeepestAndy RossC+1 DivingMinxsy DynaRob and my good self was in the region of 2 seconds. It set the tone for 36 hrs of merciless piss taking between 2 KISS divers and 2 Sentinel divers.

One of my favourite comments from Deepest Andy “look your going to have to wink or something, so I know the difference between a serious question and a piss take” :)

As soon as Smudge boarded we were ropes off and headed out for a pleasant hours cruise out to the Pin Wreck. The Pin wreck was the first of the shallow unknowns we were to dive and we had a some specific task set by SteveChesh, which basically included anything and everything and bring up some spidge so we can hopefully identify the wreck, Ok that’s all easy then.

Smudge put the shot in about 50m short of the wreck cos apparently he’s a dentist not a skipper, ok I lie it was maybe 4m from the side of the wreck but it felt like 50m cos I was so tired finning the huge gaping gap. We all made it onto the wreck and quickly began our task of swimming in random directions and noting anything of importance, well actually noting anything we didn’t know if it was important or not.:embarassed:

The wreck is small and in a 40 minute dive you can swim multiple circuits of the wreck. This I found out after I swam past 2 cylinders and then swam past 2 very similar cylinders and thought ‘ I wonder why they put 2 sets of these on a ship’ then promptly realised I’d made a full circuit of the wreck. The wreck has 2 large anchors stuck in the sand at what I assume is the bow with a substantial capstan with toothed gears lying against it, then as you proceed round the wreck you can see many pins still sticking out the remains of I assume the planking on the hull of the ship. As you round the ‘stern’ of the wreck you first come to a large pile of debris of unknown origin before the 2 mystery cylinders, neither looked like boilers as you could clearly see inside the cylinders and no pipes were present and both cylinders were one after the other with nothing obvious before or after them. I’ll leave that little mystery to Chesh.

So after a pleasant 40ish minutes on the wreck I found myself back near the shot, oh how amazing was that, I then allegedly got myself so buoyant on the ascent I dragged the shot out of site of the wreck so no one else cold use it to ascend, only after the dive did they tell me this and I was like totally upset by that.:redface:

Back on the boat all was well as the piss taking began again, well to be honest it didn’t so much begin as get set off by the disco fever emanating from one corner of the boat. Apparently you only need look at a Sentinel and it lights up like Blackpool Las Vegas and then the mouthpiece begins to vibrate furiously. Not a wonder they both took there units away for some late night fettling, I think this may have been something to do with DeepestAndys idea of how to use a rebreather in a very different way, HPDW anybody?

A little quote from Paul Bailey “ no I’ve got all the kit I need now and the rebreather of my dreams” oh really Paul….2 rebreathers in 2 months?;)

It wasn’t long before Smudge bought out the pasties and the silence descended on the boat, probably as much a relief for poor Smudge the dentist as the rest of us.

Well our second dive was to be a demonstration by the All Weymouth Seabed Dredgeing Crew, you all know them as DivingMinxsy and DynaRob. I now fully believe Rob has the world record for Scallops in a bag under a single lift bag and Minxsy isn’t far behind Rob either. We won’t go into RossC’s little’un he flopped out on the deck but I think I heard Minxsy correctly when she said she’d feed it to the cats for a laugh.

A quick deco beer or 2 and off into Weymouth we travelled for a curry and some sights and sounds. My memory is somewhat vague but I can remember being dragged in to some classy cattle market by RossC and all I can remember from DeepestAndy is him lamenting an air stewardess called Janet the Planet. Well I guess you had to be there and my memory to not be so fogged by alco-pops for a fuller account of the night but as they say what goes on tour stay on tour, at least till the next boat trip.

Now onto the Sunday well it looked a bit blowy in the morning but Smudge came down and told us straight “we’ll leave it half an hour and it’ll die down, trust me I’m a dentist” and lo from the northeast did the wind die down and doth Scimitar put to sea.

Well this time our illustrious skipper admitted defeat and was unwilling to put us on what little he could find over the site of the railway wreck. I think fair play at this point, Smudge stated that there was maybe something there but it was too small for him to be confident of it being a wreck, well he pulled a rabbit out of the hat and gave us the choice of heading out towards Cutlass which had put a shot in over the Alex Van Opstel and we’d easily be in time for slack over there. I think maybe after missing the wreck by such a wide margin on the first day he’s let Cutlass do the hard work before capitalising on it and dropping us in over there.

Well a quick 15 minutes out to the Alex and a quick kit up and down the shot we headed, Paul and myself showing the grace and beauty of the divine and the Sentinel Chuckle brothers lit up like a pikey caravans at Christmas and we hit the wreck at 28ish and began a slow mooch about, The Alex is a big wreck and quite broken up so it was difficult to get an eye in as to where we were and where we were headed. 20 minutes or so into the dive and the brave Paul and I headed out into the sand and shingle in the hope of finding the rest of the wreck but after 5 minutes we turned and headed back it was just as I was getting bored of sand that I decided to bag up and turned to Paul to indicate I was on my way up that lo and behold there was the wreck again. Well no real issue I ascended and Paul was about 10 minutes behind me.

Another surface interval that included pastie made by the fair hand of smudge apparently, he got up at 5 am or something to go and make them at a place called Asda.

Our final dive of the weekend was another scallop run to fill the larders of various shires and back to Portland for the sad ending to this tall tale. I have tried to embellish and generally make up as much as possible and like all good sea tales there’s some truth some not so truth and some down right lies but you’ll have to figure out which was which.

I say a huge thank you to Smudge for putting up with us and providing entertainment of his own. Helena for keeping Smudge away from money and sharp objects.

RossC+1 it was a pleasure to finally be on a boat with you and hope alls well with you for whatever you decide to do next.

RossC and DeepestAndy….well someone had to buy the Playmobile rebreathers

Paul Bailey for looking nearly as cool as me but not quite with his exit from his KISS.

DivingMinxsy and DynaRob for the master class in seek and destroy diving.:D

Thank you all for a great weekend.
 

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A VS Cash Cow
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17,832 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
The Team

Smudge


All Weymouth Scallop Dredging Crew - Minxsy and DynaRob


RossC - looking for a new village.......


DeepestAndy - HPDW!


RossC+1 - :D


Paul Bailey - sorry mate, you must of been off buying some more kit


oh and me.......
 

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life is too short
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1,987 Posts
cool report...

glad to hear all the units are working and playing nicely.

mmmmm i recognise that rossc+1 with the backwards mask and pony tail... :teeth:
 

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TTFN
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Nice report.

The wreck is small and in a 40 minute dive you can swim multiple circuits of the wreck. This I found out after I swam past 2 cylinders and then swam past 2 very similar cylinders and thought ‘ I wonder why they put 2 sets of these on a ship’ then promptly realised I’d made a full circuit of the wreck. The wreck has 2 large anchors stuck in the sand at what I assume is the bow with a substantial capstan with toothed gears lying against it, then as you proceed round the wreck you can see many pins still sticking out the remains of I assume the planking on the hull of the ship. As you round the ‘stern’ of the wreck you first come to a large pile of debris of unknown origin before the 2 mystery cylinders, neither looked like boilers as you could clearly see inside the cylinders and no pipes were present and both cylinders were one after the other with nothing obvious before or after them. I’ll leave that little mystery to Chesh.
I'm glad I wasn't the only who did an entire circuit but only realised when I saw the shot again (off in the distance). Minxsy says she realised that we had reached the end (and she knows an end when she sees one) as it was very pointy. She was looking for lobsters under the hull while I was slightly inside looking at metal. I am fairly sure that was the Bow (with the upright U shaped section) - based on the way that the copper sheets on the hull overlaped one another.

We won’t go into RossC’s little’un he flopped out on the deck but I think I heard Minxsy correctly when she said she’d feed it to the cats for a laugh.
Yes, Minxsy has never seen such a small one and was frankly disappointed in Ross ;) . We did divide it into 4 for the cats. They enjoyed it but then put up a protest when they realised how little they were going to get each.

 

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R.I.P.
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The Pin Wreck.

Portland Shallow Unknowns.
The wreck is small and in a 40 minute dive you can swim multiple circuits of the wreck. This I found out after I swam past 2 cylinders and then swam past 2 very similar cylinders and thought ‘ I wonder why they put 2 sets of these on a ship’ then promptly realised I’d made a full circuit of the wreck. The wreck has 2 large anchors stuck in the sand at what I assume is the bow with a substantial capstan with toothed gears lying against it, then as you proceed round the wreck you can see many pins still sticking out the remains of I assume the planking on the hull of the ship. As you round the ‘stern’ of the wreck you first come to a large pile of debris of unknown origin before the 2 mystery cylinders, neither looked like boilers as you could clearly see inside the cylinders and no pipes were present and both cylinders were one after the other with nothing obvious before or after them. I’ll leave that little mystery to Chesh.

.
Hmm - so no engine to speak of, yet past reports call this a wooden steamship? I have a feeling the cylinders could be the remains of donkey boilers to power the winches as early ones had the internals made of iron.

i have a pin and washer....

no engines as such, i'm writing a report at the moment. I totally feel stupid as i left the camera in the box. 2 odd cylinders on the starboard side one after each other but no sign of any pipe work inside the cylinders, boilers?!?

also 2 big anchors and a capstan, i think, looked like winding gear for the big anchors and its the biggest big of the wreck sticking up with what appear to be toothed whells and gears beneath it.
The "washer" is called a Rove and spreads the load of the pin over the timber much like a washer does on a nut and bolt. Were there any markings on the pin - specifically something like this? /|\

The lack of an engine (even an early horizontal engine) suggest that this isn't a steamship at all. The only wooden ship i can find lost "off Portland", that was built in an Admiralty dockyard was a Nightingale class sailing ship called the "Sprightly". She was a Revenue Cutter used for patrolling the local harbours.....However, she sunk in 1821.......

the Hydro Office info is here:

Hydro Office said:
29.10.92 WK, THOUGHT TO BE A WOODEN NAVAL STEAM VESSEL, REPD LOCATED IN 503400N, 021100W, APPROX. HULL COPPER CLAD. BUTTON FROM MARINE LIGHT INFANTRY FOUND. ALSO A WINE JUG WITH A GOSPORT ADDRESS AND A STANDARD DIVER'S BOOT. THOUGHT TO HAVE SUNK BETWEEN 1855-1900. (M FOLEY, TELECON 14.10.92). COMMERCIAL GUARD REQUESTED.
**20.8.98 CINC DELETED. MORE THAN 5 YEARS.
**HH100/351/08 9.11.93 LOCATED IN 503310N, 020935W. (J K WELCH, 13.10.93). BR STD.
**HH100/351/10 31.10.95 REPD TO STAND 3MTRS PROUD OF SEABED IN GENERAL DEPTH OF 27MTRS. (J R SCOTT, 9.9.95). INS AS USC 24MTRS. - NM 3834/95. POSITIONS BELOW THIS POINT ARE IN DEGREES, MINUTES AND DECIMALS OF A MINUTE
 

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rEvolutionary HPDW'ing
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The "washer" is called a Rove and spreads the load of the pin over the timber much like a washer does on a nut and bolt. Were there any markings on the pin - specifically something like this? /|\
Both of the 'roves' we got have this crows foot marking on them, not sure about the pin... Soggy?
 

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A VS Cash Cow
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
would all the ships of the time have been copper clad? there were alot of loose sheets of copper (thin green coloured metal) that appeared to of come loose from the wreck. The crows foot is definitely on the Rove (95% sure i can see it), I'll check the pin tonight and try and get some better photos.

Chesh - were the photo's i emailed any use?
 

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Yep, i got the photo's this morning and have replied.

That is definately the Admiralty mark on them, which means the ship was built in an Admiralty dockyard. It doesn't necessarily mean it was still in Naval service because it could have been sold on.

Going back to the engine, or lack of. Did anyone see a propshaft or propellor?

This is starting to sound more like a sailing ship to me. . . . .
 

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A VS Cash Cow
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
i don't remeber anything obvious like an engine or prop shaft or even propellers. Not to say its not there, some of the others may be able to confirm as well.

what sort of size would the engine of been?
 

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i don't remeber anything obvious like an engine or prop shaft or even propellers. Not to say its not there, some of the others may be able to confirm as well.

what sort of size would the engine of been?
Not very big judging by the size of the wreck. If it had one, it may have been an early horizontal engine, rather than a typical compound engine etc
 

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A VS Cash Cow
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Not very big judging by the size of the wreck. If it had one, it may have been an early horizontal engine, rather than a typical compound engine etc
got any photo's to give us an idea of what the engine may of looked like?
 

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A VS Cash Cow
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I didn't see a prop.

I would love to do this wreck again. I would make a bit more of an effort to measure it, check for prop/propshaft and have a bit of a dig around in the shingle.
I'd be up for that as well, definitey take a camera or video as well. I think theres a bit of further investigating to be done.
 

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I'd be up for that as well, definitey take a camera or video as well. I think theres a bit of further investigating to be done.
I seem to recall there is some info in Dive Dorset about this wreck. I haven't got the book, but i'm sure there was someone's name mentioned and a telephone number. Might be worth a call to see if they know about an engine etc.....

So far i reckon it's a sailing ship with a donkey boiler for the steam winches.
 
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