The Algoma Central fleet has seen quite a bit of change in the last few days. The company’s newest Equinox-class vessel, Algoma Conveyor, arrived in Quebec earlier this week on her maiden voyage from China where she was constructed. For the trans-Pacific trip, she carried a crew from and was registered in Tuvalu, however now that the delivery voyage is complete she will be re-flagged Canadian and registered with Transport Canada to prepare her for Great Lakes service.
Algoma Conveyor, a 740′ Seawaymax self-unloading bulk carrier, is the eighth member of the Equinox Class that began in 2013 with the delivery of Algoma Equinox and now consists of four gearless bulk carriers and four self-unloaders. The other members of the class aside from the Equinox are Algoma Harvester, G3 Marquis, Algoma Strongfield, Algoma Niagara, Algoma Innovator, and Algoma Sault. The Conveyor is a sister ship of the Niagara and Sault, both of which arrived on the lakes in late 2017/early 2018. A sister to the smaller 650′ Algoma Innovator, named Algoma Endurance, may possibly be arriving on the Lakes this year – she was constructed at the 3Maj shipyard in Croatia, where Algoma originally had quite a few contracts for new vessels. However, these contracts were cancelled last year, and it is unknown if the Endurance will still be delivered or not. Algoma also has possible contracts for up to five additional 740′ Equinox vessels to be built in China, but as of now no new orders have actually been placed, meaning the Equinox series is complete (at least for now).
Algoma’s other new purchase, the tanker Louise Knutsen, arrived in her new home port of Halifax on April 14, where she was officially registered in Canada and her new name, Algoterra, was applied to the hull. This is the second vessel that Algoma Tankers has acquired in recent months – the other vessel, formerly known as Ramira, now operates for ATL as Algonorth. The ATL fleet will have a rather diversified appearance this season – Algonorth is still painted in the colors of her former owner, which consists of a bright red hull and a white waterline stripe, while Algoterra is coated in Knutsen company orange. Knowing Algoma, painting these vessels isn’t exactly high on their list of priorities, so it could be a while before they receive the standard Algoma blue hull.
And lastly, two of Algoma’s Canadian-built lakers destined for scrap are being prepared for overseas tows. Algowood and Capt. Henry Jackman both laid up for good at the end of the 2018 season in Montreal, and their names have now been shortened to Gowo and Enry, respectively, as is typical with scrap tows. The Canadian registry of both vessels was closed on April 12, confirming that their careers have come to an end. Algoma hasn’t officially announced anything as of yet, but the vessels will presumably head for Turkey in the next few months to be broken up.
The photo above shows Algonorth sailing, likely on the St. Lawrence Seaway (courtesy of Boatnerd.com).
The next few photos were taken by Mac Mackay, and show the new Algoterra in Halifax being renamed. In the photo above, the name Louise Knutsen is being painted out.
The ship was temporarily named Louise K for the delivery trip from Europe.
Here, the new name is hastily applied above the ship’s previous name, which is welded onto the hull.
And lastly, a closeup shot of her stern shows, again, her previous name and homeport welded on. I assume that when Algoma eventually drydocks her and repaints her hull, they will remove the old name, but who knows? (Previous four photos courtesy of Mac Mackay, Shipfax)