Louis R. Desmarais

Louis R. Desmarais – CSL Laurentien

1977-Present

CSL Laurentien on the St. Marys River, September 3, 2010. Photo by Roger LeLievre

Specs

Build Information

Stern Section [Original Hull]

Year Built: 1977

Builder: Canadian Shipbuilding & Engineering Collingwood Shipyards LTD., Collingwood, ON

Hull #212

Registry: CAN. 369048

IMO #7423108

Laid Down: —

Launch Date: July 8, 1977

Commissioned: November 5, 1977

Forebody [Cargo Section & Forward]

Year Built: 2001

Builder: Port Weller Dry Docks, St. Catharines, ON

Hull #79

Laid Down: —

Launch Date: April 7, 2001

Commissioned: April 9, 2001

Construction

The Louis R. Desmarais was constructed as a self-unloading bulk carrier for Canada Steamship Lines. She was designed with a rounded bow and a square stern to maximize efficiency and capacity. She featured a C-Loop style self-unloading system with a three-belt cargo hold layout.

She was the fourth of five similar sister ships constructed during the 1970’s, the others being the J. W. McGiffin [CSL Niagara, 1999]H. M. Griffith [Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin, 2000;], Algolake, and the Jean Parisien [CSL Assiniboine, 2005].

The Desmarais was rebuilt in 2001, and her self-unloading equipment consists of a dual hold belt leading to an aft loop-belt system to a 246′ deck-mounted boom.

Modifications

  • Rebuilt with a new forebody by Port Weller Dry Docks, St. Catharines, Ontario, 2001.
  • Repowered, 2014.

General Stats

As Constructed

Length Overall: 730′

Length Between Perpendiculars: 720’06”

Breadth: 75′

Depth: 46’06”

Loaded Draft: 30’03”

Capacity: 22,716 Gross Tons, 16,598 Net Tons

Vessel Type: Loop-Belt Self-Unloader

Self-Unloading Boom Length: Stern-mounted; 246′

Number of Cargo Holds: 5

Number of Hatches: 22

Primary Operations: Ore, Coal, Stone, Grain, Salt Trades

Propellers: 1 Controllable Pitch Propeller [In Kort Nozzle]

Rudders: 1

After Rebuild, 2001

Length Overall: 739’10”

Length Between Perpendiculars: 730’10”

Breadth: 78′

Depth: 48’05”

Loaded Draft: 31’04”

Capacity: 37,694 Tons

Vessel Type: Loop-Belt Self-Unloader

Self-Unloading Boom Length: Stern-mounted; 246′

Number of Cargo Holds: 5 [Hatch-Hold Arrangement: 4-5-5-5-5]

Number of Hatches: 24 [Dimensions: 54’x10’11”]

Primary Operations: Ore, Coal, Stone, Grain, Salt Trades

Propellers: 1 Controllable Pitch Propeller [In Kort Nozzle]

Rudders: 1


Engineering Equipment

Original

Engine

Engine Type: Diesel Engine

Engine Manufacturer: Pielstick, Beloit, WI

Engine Model: 10PC2-2V-400

Number of Engines: 2

Rated HP: 9000 BHP


Repower – 2014

Engine Type: Diesel Engines

Engine Manufacturer: MaK/Caterpillar, Kiel, Germany

Engine Model: 6M32C

Number of Engines: 2

Rated HP: 8060 BHP


History

Name/Ownership History

Louis R. Desmarais – 1977-2001

Owner: Canada Steamship Lines, Montreal, QC

Operator: Canada Steamship Lines

Flag: Canada

Home Port: Toronto, ON


CSL Laurentien – 2001-Present

Owner: Canada Steamship Lines, Montreal, QC

Operator: Canada Steamship Lines

Flag: Canada

Home Port: St. Catharines, ON


Her Story

The Louis R. Desmarais was built in 1977 as a self-unloading bulk carrier for Canada Steamship Lines. She departed Owen Sound, Ontario, on November 5, 1977, on her maiden voyage, bound for Thunder Bay, Ontario, to load iron ore for Hamilton, Ontario.

On June 5, 1979, the Desmarais spotted the burning Cartiercliffe Hall on Lake Superior, coming to their assistance to pick up survivors. In 1981, the Desmarais was a participant in Canada Steamship Lines’ operation of unloading cargoes directly into the holds of an ocean ship. On November 27, 1999, the Louis R. Desmarais suffered an engine room fire as a result of a broken oil line. The fire was extinguished with no injuries.

Over the winter of 2000/2001, the Louis R. Desmarais was drydocked at Port Weller Dry Docks at St. Catharines, Ontario, where her old forebody and cargo section was cut off just forward of the aft accommodations. The old forebody was removed from drydocked and towed to the scrapyard in Port Colborne. In its place, a new forebody and cargo section was constructed, bringing the ship to maximum Seaway dimensions. Her new forebody featured a state-of-the-art self-unloading system with completely automated controls, as well as a completely automated engine room. The Louis R. Desmarais was rechristened CSL Laurentien in ceremonies with the christening of her fleetmate CSL Tadoussac on March 3, 2001. The Laurentien was float launched on April 7, and entered service on April 9, 2001, bound for Thunder Bay, Ontario, to load grain.

The CSL Laurentien was repowered with new MaK Diesel Engines in 2014. She continues to be an active member of the Canada Steamship Lines fleet, hauling ore, coal, grain, and salt to ports across the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway.


Compiled By Brendan Falkowski

Updated on May 20, 2020


Gallery


Sources

Ahoy & Farewell II. Marine Historical Society of Detroit, 1996. Pp. 17-18.

Berry, Sterling P. “Desmarais, Lewis R.”. Great Lakes Vessel History: Vessel Histories of Sterling P. Berry. N.d. Accessed 20 May 2020. <https://www.greatlakesvesselhistory.com/histories-by-name/d/desmarais-lewis-r>

“CSL Laurentien”. Canada Steamship Lines. N.d. Accessed 20 May, 2020. <https://www.cslships.com/sites/default/files/csl_laurentien_-_new_version_2017.07_0.pdf>

Devendorf, John F. Great Lakes Bulk Carriers, 1869-1985. John F. Devendorf, 1996. Pp. 190.

Greenwood’s Guide to Great Lakes Shipping 2016, Harbor House Publishers, 2016. Pp. 4.9.

Wharton, George. “CSL Laurentien”. Great Lakes and Seaway Shipping Online. N.d. Accessed 20 May 2020. <http://boatnerd.com/pictures/fleet/csllaurentien.htm>