United Airline
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Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:00 pm

Will SS United States be in service anytime soon? If yes when?

I know NCL bought it but this is taking like forever for them to put it back into service.
 
dl021
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:07 pm

If by soon you mean ever, it's looking more and more doubtful.

NCL has owned it for a couple of years now and nothing really has happened. It's amazing this beautiful vessel has not been scrapped....but it has been fairly gutted and stripped of anything resembling useful assets. It's machinery is not functional, what of it is left, and it's not been to sea under it's own power for over 20 years.

I'll be surprised if NCL finds it economic to do anything but scrap it if they can find a legal way to do so.
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United Airline
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:10 pm

Why did they buy it at the very first place?
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:26 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 2):
Why did they buy it at the very first place?

Because they needed a ship that was built in the USA to run its Hawaii cruises. They managed to get compromise and thus be able to us new builds. My thoughts is that this ship will never enter service with NCL. The CEO of NCL is very pro new builds and not a fan of older ships in the least.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:57 pm



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 3):
The CEO of NCL is very pro new builds and not a fan of older ships in the least.

Here's some info on the "New Builds" at this link that NCL has been using on the Hawaii runs. See entry for Feb 8, 11, 16:

http://www.maritimematters.com/shipnews.html

There's also news on this site about the United States and other ships . . .
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beefer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 4:17 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 4):
Here's some info on the "New Builds" at this link that NCL has been using on the Hawaii runs. See entry for Feb 8, 11, 16:

I haven't been following cruising as much the last couple of years so I had no idea that NCL was pulling out of the Hawaii market so much. I know they spent alot of time and effort to get to the point they were at.

Found this interesting article on what's going on with the NCL America program:

http://www.frommers.com/rss/articles/4963.html
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 4:26 pm



Quoting Beefer (Reply 5):
I haven't been following cruising as much the last couple of years so I had no idea that NCL was pulling out of the Hawaii market so much.

Another officer in my Department recently went on a Hawaii Cruise with NCL - in fact the last two weeks, the same time I was gallavanting about Maui he was with his wife onboard their ship.

Said he has a great time, ship was awesome, and appeared full. I can't imagine why they are pulling back so much in that market. Tourism in Hawaii is high, and it's the high season there too.

Quoting United Airline (Reply 2):
Why did they buy it at the very first place?



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 3):
Because they needed a ship that was built in the USA to run its Hawaii cruises.

Jones Act.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merchant_Marine_Act_of_1920
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beefer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 5:06 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 6):
I can't imagine why they are pulling back so much in that market.

This is what the Frommers article which I linked to in my other post had to say:

Commenting on the Pride of Aloha withdrawal, NCL President and CEO Colin Veitch noted that, "Our Hawaii business has been extraordinarily difficult, and although we have progressively established a stable operation, delivering a good product in a great destination, the overall price level in the market has been driven down, to a significant degree, by an unprecedented expansion of capacity from low-cost foreign flag ships based on the west coast operating domestic Hawaii itineraries . . ."

Translation: You can currently get an 11-, 12-, or even 15-night cruise sailing from west coast cities like San Diego or Ensenada (Mexico) for prices that are competitive with what NCL charges for its 7-night inter-island cruises. You might not spend quite as much time in the islands (it takes 4 or 5 days to reach Hawaii from the west coast) but you will get a lot more vacation days for your money, as well as saving air costs by only having to fly one-way from the islands rather than round-trip.
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:02 pm



Quoting Beefer (Reply 7):

True that Translation.

Looking at itineraries between Princess and NCL, I can easily spend as much on Princess and get a longer cruise (with several days at sea - which I prefer) and still get the Island Hopping done . . .

Being a member of Princess' Captain's Circle for many years, they usually get my business. . . save a few trips on Renaissance anyway.

Check out Princess' 14 day LA - Hawaii - LA Cruise (Itinerary # 5846). A mini-suite costs $2900 pp.

Seven days on NCL from Honolulu is $2899 pp - in a suite.
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United Airline
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:04 pm



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 3):
Because they needed a ship that was built in the USA to run its Hawaii cruises.

Then why not use it?  Confused
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:40 pm

You have to remember that unlike other cruises where the staff our usually from other countries and make peanuts in wages. The NCL Hawaii has all crew from the USA and must pay them the going rates and must only work them x amount of hours or they get paid overtime. That is what is killing the NCL Hawaii product.

Quoting United Airline (Reply 9):
Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 3):
Because they needed a ship that was built in the USA to run its Hawaii cruises.

Then why not use it?

Because they were able to get around the Jones act with new builds.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:53 pm

Also no casino revenue from the NCL Hawaii ships.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
flashflyguy
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 8:05 pm

Quoting United Airline (Reply 9):
Then why not use it?

Well, considering these photos were taken in 2002....











Meanwhile, I'm off today to get some hopefully decent photos of the Cunard Queen Victoria which has just this minute docked here in Sydney, on it's maiden arrival. I'm sure it will be madness down there today. However, tomorrow it will be absolutely insane with the final arrival of the QE2 and QV in port....

EDIT: Just heard on the radio that, when the QE2 arrives tomorrow -- it will be 30 years to the day since it's maiden arrival into Sydney...(24th February 1978).

[Edited 2008-02-22 12:10:26]
 
United Airline
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 8:12 pm

Where did SS United States sail in the past? Also do they have a swimming pool?
 
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moo
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 8:17 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 6):
Jones Act.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merchant_Marine_Act_of_1920

Wow, that is one *hell* of a protective law!
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 8:32 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 13):
Where did SS United States sail in the past? Also do they have a swimming pool?

I don't mean to be rude, but does your computer not have a Search Google function?

http://www.ss-united-states.com/i2.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_United_States

http://ssunitedstatesconservancy.org/SSUS/Home.html
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FlagshipAZ
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 9:18 pm

The old girl has seen much better days. It's doubtful that she can be put back into
active service again. Perhaps it would be better to sink her deep in the Atlantic,
where the carrier USS America lies.
As much as I appreciate maritime history...sometimes it's better to let them go
to a ocean grave. At least she'll be in one piece. Just my thoughts.
Regards.
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NorthstarBoy
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:10 pm

The reason the "Big U" isn't currently under tow to India, to take her place on the beach beside the Norway, is because she's on the U.S. National Historic Registry. NCL probably figures it's easier to just keep her rotting in Philadelphia and pay the berthing fees than to undergo the legal hassle of towing her out in the middle of the night.

I think the reason we'll never see her in passenger service again is because the cost to bring her up to today's standards would probably be enormous, they'd probably have to install new engines, make her ADA compliant, SOLAS compliant, not to mention completely gut the interior and rebuild it from scratch to make her useful under NCL's current "Freestyle Cruising" business plan, which dictates many dining and entertainment options, while keeping the exterior basically the way it is. I know a number of years ago, when they bought her, NCL intended to basically rebuild her from scratch, but with her being on the National Historic Registry, i don't think they can do much to change her exterior appearance.

the best thing NCL could do with her is to have her completely restored to her original glory and turn her into some kind of martime museum. Somehow, though, considering the enormous cost, i don't think NCL would do that, they're satisfied to let her just sit and rot, and maybe hope that if enough time passes, she'll sink in her berth, allowing them to scrap her.

that's my opinion.

A couple of interesting factoids:

She was the last true ocean liner to take the Blue Ribband, she did it on her maiden voyage, with a crossing time of 3days and an average speed of 35 knots.

During her sea trials, supposedly, she was hitting speeds of 41 knots, she was so fast that the government classified her actual sea trial speeds.

Once in active service, because she was paired with the SS America, a much older, slower vessel, they had to keep her crossing speed down, to keep the schedules in sync, because the America just could not keep up.

It would have been great to see what kind of service life she might have had had she been constructed 10 or 15 years earlier, she'd have made a great trooper during WWII, because of her astounding hull speed, and post war, she'd probably have given the Queens a run for their money, maybe built a following, and weathered the advent of the jetage much better.
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luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:25 pm



Quoting NorthstarBoy (Reply 17):
the best thing NCL could do with her is to have her completely restored to her original glory and turn her into some kind of martime museum. Somehow, though, considering the enormous cost, i don't think NCL would do that, they're satisfied to let her just sit and rot, and maybe hope that if enough time passes, she'll sink in her berth, allowing them to scrap her.

that's my opinion.

Having worked for NCL for many years, you have hit the nail on the head on just how they hope this plays out.
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alberchico
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:13 pm

It will not ever sail again, with the exception of going to the scrapyards of Alang, India.

Here is a fascinating maritime website that provides a wealth of detail on this matter :

http://www.ssmaritime.com/newsupdates2.htm
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kc135topboom
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:51 pm



Quoting NorthstarBoy (Reply 17):
She was the last true ocean liner to take the Blue Ribband, she did it on her maiden voyage, with a crossing time of 3days and an average speed of 35 knots.

During her sea trials, supposedly, she was hitting speeds of 41 knots, she was so fast that the government classified her actual sea trial speeds.

She was also partially built with USN funds, so she could be called up as a troop carrier, if needed.

Her machinery is the same type that is used aboard the USN Iowa class BBs.
 
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RayChuang
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 5:30 pm

They could rebuild the SS United States, but the cost would approach US$1 billion in terms of replacing corroded parts, replacing the engines, and upgrading the ship to meet current Americans with Disabilities Act accessibility standards. At that price, it would be cheaper to just build a new ship just for cruising around the Hawaiian Islands.
 
United Airline
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 6:49 pm

All I can say is.......... what a waste. And NCL lies all the time. 

Why did they buy SS France? And why did they change the name from SS Norway to SS Blue Lady before scrapping? Can anyone tell me please?

[Edited 2008-02-24 10:54:19]
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 6:53 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 22):
Why did they buy SS France? Can anyone tell me please?

SS Norway (nee France) was a viable and very very popular ship for many years with NCL. THe cost to repair her after the mishap in Miami simply wasn't worth it. NCL could almost build a new ship, keel to top mast, for the cvost to cut a hole in the side of Norway to remove/replace/repair that boiler room.

Further, she was getting a little long in the tooth, and couldn't make the docks in many of her stops, rather having to lighter pax to the beach . . .

As popular as she was, her day was done when that boiler exploded.
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United Airline
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 6:55 pm

If the boiler didn't explode I guess she is still in service now
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 7:20 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 24):
If the boiler didn't explode I guess she is still in service now

I'm quite sure.

Norway had quite a following . . . was very popular.

This is her current state:

 alert   alert   alert  Don't look EA_CO_AS  alert   alert   alert 

Scroll down to the 11th (& 12th) photo . . . she will be gone within a year . . .

http://www.maritimematters.com/shipnewspics.html
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flashflyguy
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 9:42 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 22):
And why did they change the name from SS Norway to SS Blue Lady before scrapping? Can anyone tell me please?

Maybe because it was no longer owned by NCL. It is not uncommon for ships going to the breakers to be renamed. For many years we had a ship doing cruises out of Sydney called "Fairstar". When she was retired and prior to sailing from Sydney, direct to the breakers, she was renamed "Ripa". I'd say it's similar to when an aircraft has an accident and the airlines name gets painted over.
 
United Airline
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:30 pm

Interestingly Saga Ruby and Saga Rose are still in service/good shape.

Very hard to book on them though
 
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Tue Feb 26, 2008 4:44 am

As soon as the Sagrada Familia church is completed
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AverageUser
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:21 am



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 23):
THe cost to repair her after the mishap in Miami simply wasn't worth it

I would not call the event a mishap at all. Rather, it was the inevitable end result of knowingly running critical equipment past their useful and safe life. There was also a faux repair of the boiler with copper. See the investigation report:

http://www.ntsb.gov/publictn/2007/MAB0703.htm
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Tue Feb 26, 2008 10:30 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 24):
If the boiler didn't explode I guess she is still in service now

I very much doubt it. She was getting to the point that having to make repairs to make her current with S.O.L.A.S. standards would have been way to costly. Though had she not had the accident I do believe she would have sailed right up until her last day.

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 23):
Further, she was getting a little long in the tooth, and couldn't make the docks in many of her stops, rather having to lighter pax to the beach

She never could dock at the majority of her ports and that had nothing to do with her age, it had to do with her deep draft which made her an ideal ocean liner first and foremost.

The port of Miami had to be dredged in order for her to be able to dock. At times there was only 18 feet between her bottom and the port.
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bananaboy
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Mon Mar 03, 2008 6:54 pm

Just found this thread...

Concur with the above as per the reasons for retirement. Agree that it's extremely unlikely SS United States will sail again. NCL's core business is large (and increasingly large), new, efficient ships that are designed around the Freestyle concept. They sold Orient Lines (and the lovely little Marco Polo) in order to concentrate on what they do best.

Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 18):
Having worked for NCL for many years, you have hit the nail on the head on just how they hope this plays out.

Me too!  bouncy 


Mark
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FlagshipAZ
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:19 pm

Well, NCL can always sell the SS United States to the City of Long Beach, and turn her into
another RMS Queen Mary. A damn shame to let maritime history literally rust away at both
LGB & PHL.
Regards.
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United_fan
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:30 pm

Here's a link to a site that got to go inside her last Summer. Some of the up-close shots are scarry,as far as the corrosion!

http://www.planphilly.com/node/1559
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Mortyman
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:55 pm

I miss SS Norway...




I will never understand why the owners fed her to the wolfes at the shipwreck yard in India....

she might have been an old ship, but they should have refurbished her and added new modern engines instead opf the steamboilers, whatever the cost.

The ships of today ( especially the ones of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines wich also is partly norwegian owned ) certainly are marwles in their own right, but they can never compete with the elegance of SS Norway. Not in any way.

Sadly the business world has become to tangled up in short term investments and ships without soul...
 
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United_fan
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 4:59 pm



Quoting Mortyman (Reply 34):
I will never understand why the owners fed her to the wolfes at the shipwreck yard in India....

she might have been an old ship, but they should have refurbished her and added new modern engines instead opf the steamboilers, whatever the cost.

Unfortunately,in busuiness,it doesn't work that way. The Norway was an ocean liner,which was overkill on Carib cruising.
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ANCFlyer
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 5:21 pm



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 30):
She never could dock at the majority of her ports and that had nothing to do with her age, it had to do with her deep draft which made her an ideal ocean liner first and foremost.

Didn't intend to infer her age was the cause of her inability to dock at most places . . .

Yes, I know she was a deep draft ocean liner, not a cruise ship.

Yes, her age in fact played a roll in the reason she was not repaired after the boiler incident in Miami.

Yes, bringing her up to current SOLAS standards would have been cost prohibitive.

Bottom line: She had outlived her usefulness . . .
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United_fan
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 5:54 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 36):
Bottom line: She had outlived her usefulness

Sad,very sad,but true  Sad  Sad
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1stfl94
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 7:21 pm

I think the best hope is that she becomes a museum ship or a floating hotel like the QE2 will in November.
 
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United_fan
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 7:42 pm



Quoting 1stfl94 (Reply 38):
I think the best hope is that she becomes a museum ship or a floating hotel like the QE2 will in November.

I doubt that,too. At least the QE2's interior is intact and its exterior is in good shape. By SS United States' interior is gutted and its exterior is crumbling....
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MSYtristar
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 8:11 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 36):
Bottom line: She had outlived her usefulness . . .

I can't pass this one up...

Spock suggested to Kirk in Star Trek 6 that they have outlived their usefulness.  Wink
 
CaptOveur
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 8:14 pm



Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 40):
Spock suggested to Kirk in Star Trek 6 that they have outlived their usefulness.

They have.. Yet they continue to make movies that people without lives continue to go see.
Things were better when it was two guys in a dorm room.
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 8:49 pm



Quoting Mortyman (Reply 34):
The ships of today ( especially the ones of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines wich also is partly norwegian owned ) certainly are marwles in their own right, but they can never compete with the elegance of SS Norway. Not in any way.

Sadly the business world has become to tangled up in short term investments and ships without soul...

NCL, Norwegian Cruise Line has nothing to do with RCCL, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 8:51 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 36):
Yes, her age in fact played a roll in the reason she was not repaired after the boiler incident in Miami.

Well since the current CEO hates anything old her days were numbered with or with out the accident. Prior to the accident the plan was to redeploy her to parent company Star Cruises.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
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Mortyman
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:14 pm



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 42):
NCL, Norwegian Cruise Line has nothing to do with RCCL, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line.

I am fully aware of this, and I never said it was the same company. Please read the post again.
 
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United_fan
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Thu Mar 06, 2008 12:41 pm

I wonder if she'd even make the journey to Alang....
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highflier92660
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime So

Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:53 pm

There are extremely few options for an obsolete ocean liner that was also built as a mid-century high speed ocean going troop carrier. Doing an Internet search I discovered that during the design and construction, the U.S. government actually kept the SS United States lower hull and propulsion system top secret, which is unusual for a luxury transatlantic passenger ship. Prior to her maiden voyage during time trials she was said- according to several sources- to have done well over 40 knots (a top speed also kept classified.) As for the interior, the ship was subdivided like a warship and made as fire-proof as possible; no wood-paneling like on the Cunard queens or flammable Oriental carpeting was permitted. From all reports the SS United States gave off a sleek but sterile appearance to most travelers of the 1950s.. After all, it's primary design was to carry thousands of troops quickly across oceans like the Queen Mary did in WW-II.

On July 4, 1952 the United States set sail on her Maiden Voyage carrying such notables as Margaret Truman, the daughter of the President, while the world watched in anticipation of the transatlantic race for The Blue Riband. Three days, ten hours and forty minutes later the liner passed abeam Bishop Rock off Cornwall in, from all reports, was a howling gale with whitecaps that was a huge impediment for Blue Riband attempts. Nevertheless her speed of 35.59 knots was never again matched by another large ocean built greyhound. Only her designers knew a closely guarded secret; as swift her transatlantic run was, the SS United States was comparatively loafing on her Maiden Voyage.

In England The Guardian sniffed "after all the build-up we have been hearing about her, it comes as something of a disappointment that it was all true."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_United_States
 
luv2fly
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Thu Mar 06, 2008 4:27 pm



Quoting United_Fan (Reply 45):
I wonder if she'd even make the journey to Alang....

There are photos of her already being scrapped, you are talking about the Norway, correct.
You can cut the irony with a knife
 
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United_fan
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RE: Will SS United States Be In Service Anytime Soon?

Thu Mar 06, 2008 6:00 pm

No,the United States.......
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