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Full-steam ahead for Whalen tanker - Brooklyn Paper

Full-steam ahead for Whalen tanker

Cleaning up: Volunteers from PortSideNY helped scrub and restore long-needed engine parts for the old tanker, Mary A. Whalen.
The Brooklyn Paper / Bess Adler

An ongoing project to restore a 71-year old tanker scored a big hit this weekend when organizers acquired and started cleaning an all-important engine for the beleaguered boat.

Carolina Salguero, who runs the maritime cultural group PortSide New York that is restoring the tanker Mary A. Whalen at the Red Hook Marine Terminal, learned about the 49,000-pound engine from a friend in Seattle, where one of the Whalen’s sister ships was being scrapped. After a cross-country trip, the rusty powerplant is back in Brooklyn.

Salguero bought the machinery for $5,705 and is quite happy with her find.

“One dealer I spoke to is asking $7,500 for one piston for this engine!” said Salguero, who noted that getting the aged engine up and running will still require a lot of elbow grease.

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