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robert spencer
27th March 2016, 12:59 PM
Known as Bob Spencer, I joined my first ship as Junior Engineer April 1970 in Avonmouth to Kiwi for a load of frozen lamb.
Spent the next 16 years sailing on many of the company's ships including:- Argentina Star, Tasmania Star, ACT4(my first horrible experience of box boats), Brasilia Star, Tuscan Star, Montreal Star, Almaria Star, Browning, Boniface, Andalucia Star, Romney and Churchill(ex New Zealand Star).
Enjoyed every minute of it. Would like to catch up with old friends.

Captain Kong
27th March 2016, 01:04 PM
Hi Bob
Welcome to the site.
I sailed on a few Star boats in the 50-s,....New Zealand Star of 1935, Dunedin Star, of 1950 , Adelaide Star of 1950 and Tasmania Star of 1950.
Big Hungry Workhouses. Lousy accommodation, Lousy feeding, Heavy on deck, the only good thing about them was the Run to OZ and Kiwi.
A few story's of the voyages on `Seafaring Stories` thread in the `Swinging the lead Forum`.
Cheers
Brian

Charlie Hannah
28th March 2016, 02:21 AM
I was on a few Star boats good run always had good crowds,backed out of the last one i was on in Auckland N.Z. a Ballbreacker and an A****** of a skipper!

happy daze john in oz
28th March 2016, 05:30 AM
G'day Bob, did you ever sail with a navigation officer by the name of Tim Noble by any chance. He was with Blue star for a number oif years.

Mike Rust
1st July 2016, 09:26 AM
I was briefly on Braslia Star in 74 as Junior Engineer. Good times but no one believes the stories.:-)

Ivan Cloherty
1st July 2016, 10:41 AM
I was briefly on Braslia Star in 74 as Junior Engineer. Good times but no one believes the stories.:-)

Mike no one believes the stories of what we did in the 50's and 60's, when we sailed with people who had experienced being at sea during WWII and had no fear and knew how to enjoy themselves and instilled in us youngsters (then) the spirit of adventure, dare and do, and a reason to be glad to be alive, when most of us think back to the things we did in those era's (especially ashore!) we can only shake our heads and mutter 'I must have been insane' . They may not believe your/our stories but we know what we did and that is something no one can take away from us, enjoy your memories they are yours to keep and cherish. The other day for some unknown reason I was looking at some of my notes on my later life after leaving the sea, it would seem that insanity never quite left me!, why did I record them, I don't really know, but they have given me a chuckle

Captain Kong
1st July 2016, 11:00 AM
Some times I can hardly believe my own stories, "Did I really do that?? was that man really me??" unbelievable.
What a fantastic life.
We were the last of the Seafarers, The world will not see our likes again.
Brian...........frantically searching for that bottle of Captain Morgans.

Keith Tindell
2nd July 2016, 08:21 AM
Ref 5, we all have crazy stories to tell from our time , most of us still wonder how we lived through it, but let's have the stories Mike, this is the one place that we can all relate to those stories, so get your fingers on the keyboard, regards kt

Dennis McGuckin
2nd July 2016, 04:59 PM
Hi Bob
Welcome to the site.
I sailed on a few Star boats in the 50-s,....New Zealand Star of 1935, Dunedin Star, of 1950 , Adelaide Star of 1950 and Tasmania Star of 1950.
Big Hungry Workhouses. Lousy accommodation, Lousy feeding, Heavy on deck, the only good thing about them was the Run to OZ and Kiwi.
A few story's of the voyages on `Seafaring Stories` thread in the `Swinging the lead Forum`.
Cheers
Brian Hi Brian,Have been surprised at your comments that the 'Star' boats were bad feeders.
You paid off the Tasmania Star the trip before I joined.
There was an Aft galley for the crew. Also one midships for officers and any passengers.
So two ships cooks.
Now I don't know if it was the same cook aft when you were aboard, but he was a great 'chef'.
I ate from his galley all the time.
Have a photo of him someplace.
Sounds like you missed him.
You should have stayed on.
Also you would be able to dispel the slanderous rumors regarding my tab nabs started by one of our 'Strange' shipmates.
Also found the Argentina Star to be a good feeder.
Then again. I was in the galley.

Captain Kong
2nd July 2016, 06:06 PM
- - - Updated - - -

Thanks Den
Every Star Boat I was on was a lousy feeder, the Crew Cooks were alway plonkys, and we were always on our Pound and Pint.
6ozs fresh offal, per man, per day, per haps. We were starving with 15,000 tons of meat on board.
Homeward bound we used to go down the hatches and get a case of Corned Beef or a case of tinned Pineapples or peaches to survive.
They were hard ships when I was on them. It is all in my stories of them in Seafaring Stories thread in the Swinging the Lamp Forum.
Cheers
Brian.
The Tasmania Star was a sister to the Adelaide Star.

kurutai
5th July 2016, 09:03 PM
I was jos in the Tasmania Star in 1960 as you say the they where heavy on deck ,I got to agree for me the only good thing was the run I was a boy in the Wellington star in 1959 out to Kiwi

Des Taff Jenkins
6th July 2016, 01:28 AM
I was briefly on Braslia Star in 74 as Junior Engineer. Good times but no one believes the stories.:-)
Hi Mike.
Welcome to the site, plenty to read about times gone by in the MN, good crowd on board enjoy.
cheers Des

Brian Charles Williams
14th October 2016, 12:45 PM
Brian, did you ever come across a Chief Steward by the name Ray Howick ? Blue Star man through & through.....Brian W.

Davygross
11th January 2017, 03:46 PM
Hi Bob
I joined the Queensland Star in '78 as 4th engineer, and was on a few of the older ships, ( Brasilia, [same ship] Rockhampton, Ulster, and Halifax ) great runs, great sweaty old engines, great crowds (usually) and I remember the grub being pretty reasonable. The Blue Star web site has old crew lists that may throw up some familiar old names.
Regards Davy

Dennis McGuckin
11th January 2017, 08:28 PM
#11 Signed on the Tasmania Star Jan 1st 1960 for home trade.
Signed on for deep sea January 26.
Great ship and good crew.
Won't mention the girls in NZ.

Brian Charles Williams
14th January 2017, 12:57 AM
Dennis did you ever come across a Chief Steward by the name of Ray Howick? was with Blue Star for years.

Captain Kong
14th January 2017, 10:13 AM
I wrote the stories of the full voyages of the New Zealand Star, Adelaide Star and the Dunedin Star in the SEAFARING STORIES thread in the SWINGING THE LAMP Forum, may bring back memories of the coast.

kurutai
14th January 2017, 02:24 PM
Brian to be honest I can't think what Blue Star had to offer other than hard work lousy grub and to top it off nicely lousy accomadation OK the runs where good but I found Shaw Saville far better I was in 5 of them , so Blue Star went to South America take me there on an old Royal Mail ship anyday OK most of them where pretty fast and plenty of overtime 2 of them where enough for me ta regards Dave .

Mike Hall
14th January 2017, 03:43 PM
my stories are also on site within the Articles section.i was on the following,
ULSTER STAR.
CATALINA STAR.
NEWCASTLE STAR.
DUNEDIN STAR.
ARGENTINA STAR.
I never had a problem with the food because i was working in the Galley anyway.

Dennis McGuckin
14th January 2017, 05:55 PM
#16 Dennis did you ever come across a Chief Steward by the name of Ray Howick? was with Blue Star for years.
Can't say I did Brian.
Then again I am lousy at remembering names.
I only did one and a half trips on Blue Star.
Missed the Argentina Star in Santos, homeward bound.

kurutai
14th January 2017, 06:11 PM
If your going to miss a ship not a bad place although I suppose the company were not that impressed regards Dave .

Dennis McGuckin
14th January 2017, 09:32 PM
#18,
Enjoyed Shaw Saville as well.
Did a few trips on the 'Drina'
Can't believe that so many found Blue Star lousy feeders.
I ate what the rest of the crew had, and can't recall complaining.
Or even receiving any gripes.
Maybe the rest of the crew ate better than I did while ashore.

Captain Kong
14th January 2017, 09:56 PM
They really were Bad Feeders Den , at least the ones I sailed on,. always on our pound and pint,.

Go to bed Hungry lying awake with hunger pains. Going down the Hatches in the night, only homeward bound, trying to get a case of corned Beef or Pineapples, to eat in the cabin.
Christmas day breakfast, one this piece of streaky bacon and one egg. Big Deal. One chicken for all hands, Officers had a Turkey for dinner.
15,000 tons of meat on board and we were Hungry.
Accommodation was crap, When the Adelaide Star Class was built in Germany the accommodation down aft was big , spacious , Vesty had it cut down to less than half the size, to make more space on the tween deck of No, 6 Hatch so he could carry more cargo,
The German ship builders did complain about it.
In 1953 the old Lord Vesty died and the young one about 15 years old came on board the New Zealand Star, he looked a real spoilt brat. and he was our Boss.
Cheers
Brian.

Steve Riley
17th January 2017, 03:52 PM
hi bob, was fred spencer your brother (chippy), if so ask him to get in touch, ive him my regards
steve riley