SS Darien (1924)

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  • MV La Marea[1] (1924–29)
  • SS Darien (1930– )[1]
Owner: Balboa Shipping Co, Inc.[2]
Operator: United Fruit Company[2]
Port of registry: Panama[2]
Builder: Cammell Laird, Birkenhead[2]
Completed: April 1924[2]
General characteristics
  • as built:
  • 3,689 GRT[1]
  • tonnage under deck 3,183[1]
  • 2,148 NRT[1]
  • after lengthening:
  • 4,281 GRT[2]
  • tonnage under deck 3,533[2]
  • 2,276 NRT[2]

as built: 325.2 ft (99.1 m)[1]

after lengthening: 352.7 ft (107.5 m)[2]
Beam: 48.1 ft (14.7 m)[2]

as built: 22 ft 5.5 in (6.85 m)[1]

after lengthening: 22 ft 6.5 in (6.87 m)[2]
Depth: 28.3 ft (8.6 m)[2]
Installed power:
  • as built: 981 NHP[1]
  • as re-engined: 839 NHP[2]

SS Darien was a refrigerated cargo ship of the United Fruit Company. Cammell Laird of Birkenhead, England built her as MV La Marea, completing her in 1924.[1] She had been renamed Darien by 1930[1] and had been re-engined from diesel to steam by 1931.[2]

The ship was owned by a United Fruit subsidiary, Balboa Shipping Co, Inc, which registered her under the Panamanian flag of convenience.[1] She was still in service in 1945.[4]


La Marea was built as a diesel-electric motor vessel, with four four-cylinder single-acting two-stroke diesel engines.[1] They powered electric generators that supplied current to a single electric propulsion motor rated at 981 NHP that turned a single propeller shaft.[1] She was equipped with both submarine signalling and wireless.[1]


By 1930 Darien had been lengthened by 27.5 feet (8.4 m), which increased her gross register tonnage by 592 tons.[1] By 1931 she had been converted from diesel-electric to steam turbo-electric propulsion.[2] Her four diesel engines and four electric generators were replaced with two water-tube boilers and a single British Thomson-Houston turbo generator.[2] Her boilers had a combined heating surface of 8,660 square feet (805 m2)[2] and a working pressure of 400 lbf/in2.[2] The conversion reduced Darien's power output to 839 NHP.[2]

Darien was not United Fruit's first turbo-electric ship. As early as 1921 Workman, Clark and Company of Belfast had completed SS San Benito for Balboa Shipping, again using a BT-H turbo generator and propulsion motor.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Lloyd's Register, Steam Ships & Motorships (PDF). London: Lloyd's Register. 1930. Retrieved 5 May 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Lloyd's Register, Steamers & Motorships (PDF). London: Lloyd's Register. 1931. Retrieved 5 May 2013. 
  3. ^ Lloyd's Register, Steamers & Motorships (PDF). London: Lloyd's Register. 1934. Retrieved 5 May 2013. 
  4. ^ Lloyd's Register, Steamers & Motorships (PDF). London: Lloyd's Register. 1945. Retrieved 23 May 2013. 
  5. ^ Lloyd's Register, Steamers & Motorships (PDF). London: Lloyd's Register. 1933. Retrieved 5 May 2013.