CHIMO - St. John's Newfoundland, Canada
Call sign - VGKD
IMO number - 6723771
Official Number - 323030
Owner - Clarke Transport Canada Inc., Canada
Location - Photographed while she was sailing westbound in the St. Lawrence River near Vercheres, Quebec for Montreal, Canada
Ordered - unknown
(a) Chimo - Canada (83)
Her original bow and cargo hold were scrapped at Port Maitland,
Ontario in 1984. Canadian Ranger has not sailed since 1999
Ship type - General cargo vessel
Builder - Davie Shipbuilding Ltd.
** Built for the Clarke Transportation Company for service between St. Lawrence River ports and Canada's maritime provinces along with a sistership Cabot. Her primary run was between Montreal and Saint John's, Newfoundland.
** Chimo departed Montreal, Quebec on 16 October 1967 on her maiden voyage to St. John's, Newfoundland
** On April 1st, 1978 Chimo was in a collision on the St. Lawrence River near Grondines with the Ocean freighter Federal Thames. Neither vessel was seriously damaged though
** During the summer of 1981 Chimo'a #3 cargo hold was converted to accomodate 20 foot containers. This increaded her overall carrying capacity
** August 9th, 1982 - Chimo set sail from Montreal for Rae Point on Melville Island in the Canadian Arctic under charter to Panarctic Oil Limited. She carried oil exploration equipment to the remote northern port
** Upon return from the Arctic though she was laid up with her fleetmate Cabot in Sorel, Quebec. She had been built in a time when package freight was moved almost literally by hand. Cargo was packaged on wooden pallets then lifted aboard and placed in the cargo holds using towmotors or forklifts. This was a very time consuming operation which let to the advent of containerization. The evolution of the very trade she was built to serve brought about her demise since she was not specifically designed to carry containers
** Early in 1983 she and her fleetmate Cabot were purchased by Upper Lakes Shipping
** Chimo was towed from Sorel and arrived at Port Weller Drydocks on September 17th, 1983
** There her cargo bow and cargo hold mid ship section were cut away from her stern right at the base of her accommodations structure
** The no longer needed cargo section of Chimo was towed up the Welland Canal and on to Port Maitland on Lake Erie where it was scrapped while the stern remained at the drydocks
** Chimo's stern was then welded to the larger cargo and bow section from another ship once called Hilda Marjanne
** Under the name Canadian Ranger the new ship entered service in May of 1984. Her first cargo was a load of coal from Sandusky on Lake Erie for Dofasco in Hamilton
** Over the winter of 1987-88 Canadian Ranger was fitted with an unloading system on deck that was intended to speed up the operation of unloading grain. Elevators around the Great Lakes were beginning to modify their dock facilities so that they could receive grain cargoes from self unloading ships instead of the conventional straight deck bulk carriers that dominated the trade up until the late 1980s
** Canadian Ranger served her owners through into the mid 1990s primarily in the grain trade however her activity was becoming less and less each year in response to steadily decreasing grain exports through the Great Lakes.
** She last operated in 1999 and she spent the time from then until the spring of 2003 laid up at Montreal
** During the spring of 2003 Canadian Ranger was towed to Three Rivers, Quebec and used as a grain storage and transfer barge
** It has been rumoured that Canadian Ranger may return to service in 2004 - we'll see...