North Channel passenger steamer may sail again.Dave Ham's marine interests just keep getting bigger and bigger.
Not only has the Manitoulin Island Manitoulin Island is a Canadian island in Lake Huron, the world's largest freshwater lake island. Geography and geology
With an area of 2,766 km² (1,068 square miles), it is the 174th largest island in the world, and Canada's 31st largest island. boat builder expanded his Manitouwaning shop, he's heading up a group seeking to restore a 61-year-old Georgian Bay Georgian Bay, large northeastern extension of Lake Huron, S Ont., Canada, separated from Lake Huron by Manitoulin Island and by the Bruce Peninsula; Lucas Channel is its chief connection with Lake Huron. passenger steamer and put it back into service.
The 'Friends of the Norisle' are investigating how to refurbish the former passenger and car ferry car ferry n → Autofähre f and as a cruise ship for the North Channel.
The 215-foot steamer Norisle last sailed in 1974 as a car ferry between Tobermory and South Baymouth before being replaced by the present-day Chi-Cheemaun.
Now moored as a museum ship at the Manitouwaning Heritage Complex, the Norisle receives about 3,000 visitors annually during the summer months.
Ham says the Norisle's caretakers have spent $2 million over the years to maintain the ship as permanent static display, but he maintains such a marine artifact needs to be operational to be viable.
"These ships will not make money, unless they sail."
They've enlisted the expertise of marine engineer John Coulter This article refers to the Australian politician. For other references, see John Coulter (disambiguation).
Dr John Richard Coulter (born 3 December 1930) is an Australian medical researcher and former politician. , who restored the excursion steamer Segwun on Lake Muskoka Lake Muskoka is located between Port Carling and Gravenhurst, Ontario. The lake is surrounded by many cottages. The lake is primarily in the Township of Muskoka Lakes, with the southeast corner in the Town of Gravenhurst. , and Wayne Fischer, president of the Ontario Steam Heritage Museum. Both men inspected the ship in March and pronounced its 900 horsepower steam engine to be in relatively good shape.
That bit of good news has been instrumental in raising the profile of the project, which is attracting interest from steam aficionados and boat buffs from Canada and the U.S. The 'Friends' membership now numbers 200, says Ham.
Since Europeans seem to love Great Lakes Great Lakes, group of five freshwater lakes, central North America, creating a natural border between the United States and Canada and forming the largest body of freshwater in the world, with a combined surface area of c.95,000 sq mi (246,050 sq km). cruising, Ham says why not put the Norisle back under steam in a picturesque boater's paradise like Lake Huron's North Channel and Georgian Bay?
In its 25-year sailing career, the Norisle was licensed for 200 passengers and a capacity of 50 cars.
The group is entertaining ideas of operating the ship as a day cruiser or restoring it into a high-end passenger liner for extended trips.
The capital costs to refurbish the vessel has yet to be determined. But the ship would require extensive refitting with modern safety features and materials, new electrical systems, passenger stateroom state·room
A private cabin or compartment with sleeping accommodations on a ship or train.
1. a private room on a ship
2. renovations, and certainly dry docking before being certified to sail.
His restoration group may have a selling job ahead to convince government agencies to invest in the restoration work, but Ham's own business, Henley Boat Manufacturing, is riding the waves quite nicely.
The company recently moved into an 11,000-square-foot addition on his now-20,000-square foot shop and dealership.
In anticipation of larger orders for his aluminium-hulled boats, more welding stalls are being added with as many as 10 new positions onto his six-employee workforce, if he can find the skilled labour.
Henley has built shallow-draft boats and barges 'for the Canadian Coast Guard The Canadian Coast Guard or CCG (Fr. Garde côtière canadienne or GCC) is the coast guard of Canada.
It is the civilian federal agency responsible for providing marine search and rescue (SAR) under the auspices of the National Search and Rescue Program, , Department of Fisheries and Oceans along with U.S. federal and state orders for military and research use in Michigan, Illnois and Wisconsin.
Most of his boats are made for industrial and commercial use, but there's some recreational sport fishing use as well.
Jet boats are selling particularly well mainly because of low water levels on the Great Lakes.
Depending on the size and complexity of customer orders, production varies between 10 and two dozen boats annually The peak period of activity runs during the winter, from November to April.
Ham says his market forecast for 2007 is good. The order book looks healthy
In mid-May his crew was building a landing craft with a dropdown ramp for a mining client working near Pickle Lake.
Ham says thanks to the reach of the Internet, being located on Manitoulin is hardly a major drawback. His website receives about 3,000 to 4,000 hit on a monthly basis and the company isn't adverse to bidding on international contracts. They'll even take custom-built orders through the web.
"If people want something, they don't care
"Don't Care" is a 1994 (see 1994 in music) single by American death metal band Obituary. where they buy it. They look for people with the capability of providing it."
By IAN ROSS Ian Ross is the name of:
Northern Ontario Business Northern Ontario Business is a Canadian magazine, which publishes monthly in Greater Sudbury, Ontario. The magazine covers business news and issues in Northern Ontario.