Unlocking North Vancouver History

A Riveted Community: North Vancouver’s Wartime Shipbuilding

No. 2 Stores

Canadian shipbuilders stockpiled huge inventories of cargo-vessel parts so that nothing would hold up the rapid four-month production schedule. The standardized design meant that hundreds of parts were interchangeable and could be mass-produced. Ninety-five percent of the materials used in Canadian shipyards came from Canadian manufacturers, including items made on-site. Federal controls ensured that supplies were equally available to all shipbuilders. William Kennedy and Sons of Ontario built the 18.5-foot (5.64-m) diameter propellers, while the 135-ton (122-t), 2,500-horsepower (1,865 kW) steam reciprocating engines were built by Canadian Vickers and Canadian Allis-Chalmers in Montreal and by the John Inglis Company of Toronto. Scotch marine boilers came from Dominion Bridge Company in Montreal and Vancouver, John Inglis and Vancouver Iron Works. Producers across the country supplied the over 7,000 tons (6,350 t) of steel that went into each wartime freighter.

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WHAT
These storage facilities held standardized parts awaiting use. Each 10,000-ton cargo ship required 2,500 valves, some of which are shown here.

WHERE
Supplies of case goods and ship fittings were kept here, in the No. 2 stores building in the north yard. Electrical supplies and heavy items were held in additional buildings.

WHEN
This photo was taken in 1943, at the height of Burrard Dry Dock’s production of 10,000-ton cargo ships.

WHO
Inside engine fitters manufactured, assembled and tested ship and engine parts, most of which went to the No. 2 stores building as stock.

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