Alex More Letter No. 1, re: Transportation

March 16, 1942

Mr. J.P. Caulfield                               Flin Flon, Manitoba
Mr. A. More                                      Flin Flon, Manitoba
 

C.R.P. Boats & Engines

Dear Mr. Caulfield:

While at Island Falls, discussing boat engines, I drove out to Barrier Lake with Mr. Davis to look over the Barrier Lake boat and found it to be in very poor shape; in fact, I believe the boat to be beyond repair, but to prove this, one would have to start dismantling to be sure.

Casual inspections show the keel split, but reported solid; the stern post loose and the space around the post too large to be corked; planking very rotten and coming away from the keel; ribs oil soaked and reportedly will not hold nails; inside of hull completely covered with a scum of oil at least 1/8 inch thick.

The engine is a very old Buda stationary, converted for marine work, and I would recommend that this be replaced with a more modern motor if the boat is rebuilt or replaced.

I suggested to Mr. Davis that he shuffle his boats and eliminate this Barrier Lake boat, and he therefore proposes to put the forebay boat on Lake 2 and move the steel boat into Barrier Lake.

Engines

I cannot say that I care very much for the Russell engines that are in the two steel boats. They are old-fashioned and huge in size – I would guess that the engine in the Mari Lake boat weights in the neighborhood of 1500 pounds. There is no temperature control of any kind, and if there were, I doubt if it would make a great deal of difference as far as saving gasoline is concerned.

The bore and stroke is 5 ½ x 6, reported 750 revolutions, rated horsepower – 40; gas consumption – 5+ gallons per hour; 4.2 gallons per hour in the 3 cylinder, 30 horsepower with which the No. 2 Lake steel boat is equipped.

The chief complaint is high gasoline consumption and I would recommend installing one only Kermath V-8, which is a marine conversion of the Ford V-8, and I would also recommend, before doing this, getting as much information as possible from a known power boat authority on the installation of this motor, paying particular attention to reduction gear ratio and propeller size for a boat such as the steel boats now used.

These boats cannot be driven fast and I believe that with this motor developing 35 to 40 horsepower, at 1200 to 1500 revolutions, reduced 2 to 1 to give 600 to 750 propeller revolutions, we could save around 2 gallons of gasoline per hour.

As you know, there are a number of V-8’s throughout the organization, most operators are familiar with the motor and its requirements, and parts are, or have been, always easy to get.

Comparative figures on boat and air transport are as follows:

Airplanes moved 57,243 pounds of goods and 321 passengers in and out of Island Falls from break-up, 1941, to freeze-up, 1941.

Charges to C.R.P. for air transport during the above season were $5,767.84, charged at the regular hourly rate. This included five trips charged to C.R.P., and of which two were for guest passengers, and three, inspection trips by executives.

A round trip from Channing to Island Falls takes an average of one hour and ten minutes and 30 gallons of gas are used per round trip.

The boats running for the same period moved approximately 38,000 pounds of goods and 230 passengers, using 100 gallons of gasoline per round trip, 14 units being used in making the trip: 5 boats, 3 canoes, 4 outboard motors, 2 trucks, 2 Fordson tractors and wagons, and 1 dinky engine and flatcar; costs running,

        Labor                                  $2,812.13
        Operating Material                      1,423.43
        Maintenance and Other Charges             749.12    
                    Total                       4,984.68
  

I intend, if possible, to make a trip or two over the route this spring to look into the possibilities of making it a faster and more economical run and for the transportation of passengers only, especially for those who do not wish to fly, and not to use the ground transport so much and the air transport more.

To sum it all up, new or better engines are needed. At least one new boat, and possibly two, will be needed as replacements in the next two or three years, and the steel boats will not be faster than 8 miles per hour, with any reasonable economy.

Yours very truly,

AM/PL
cc-RWD

A. More

Sask. Archives Board, S-A465, C.R.P.Co. Fonds, VIII, 180

Read Alex More's second letter.