Straight decker

Straight decker

A straight decker is a ship built with its pilothouse forward and engines aft to provide continuous hold between. This design originated to meet the bulk freight demands on Great Lakes routes.

The term "Straight Decker" is also commonly used upon the American Great Lakes to denote a bulk/ore freighter which has not been equipped with self unloading machinery. Straight Deckers on the Great Lakes are mainly owned by the Canadian fleets, such as Upper Lakes Shipping (ULS). One exception can be made, though. The U.S. freighter Edward L. Ryerson came out of long term layup, and joined the fleet once again in 2006. The self unloading equipment in question here is usually in the form of a boom on deck. The boom is usually positioned on the back half of the vessel, pointing forward. The boom is swung out to either side of the vessel, a conveyor system is started, and the offloading process has begun. The boom is a much more efficient method of unloading. Before the boom, the vessels used Hulett Unloaders. These giants used a clamshell bucket and counterweight system to scoop the cargo out of the holds, one load at a time. Self unloaders can have a rather straight deckerish look. For example, the 1000 foot Stewart J. Cort has two shuttle booms on either side of the aft deckhouse. The shuttle booms can be extended to reach hoppers on the docks, specially designed for the purpose.

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