Welcome to the Link Maritime Supply Blog

Hi there, we are so glad that you have joined us to find out more about general ship chandlery services and shipping news in both South Africa and around the globe. We at Link Ship Chandlers are part of one of the fastest paced business operations in the world, which is why we have decided to share with you some of the fun and excitement that we encounter on a daily basis. From interesting things about seas and ports, to breaking maritime news, we’ll not only cover it here but we’ll even expand on what it is you thought you knew about this industry and the people in it.

Contact Us at Link Ship Chandlers

We are based in Cape Town and have a wealth of experience offering our services to international clients all over the globe. If you have any questions about this blog, the services that we offer, or even if you are looking for specific information about products that we supply, then please feel free to contact us and let us know! Alternatively, if you simply would like to find out more about the ports and harbour business in general, or even join in on a conversation about the latest maritime news, then please feel free to dive into our blog below and become a part of our vibrant industry right now.


Digital Container Seal for Shipment Monitoring

Posted by on 01 Nov 2017 under Ship Chandling

At Link Ship Chandlers, we like to stay abreast of news and developments in the shipping industry, especially when it comes to the development of new technology that has the potential to vastly improve the way we do business. This is why we were so excited to learn about the new, low-cost digital container seal that has been developed by Dutch software company Itude Mobile for the CORE European Research Project.


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3 Things You Didn’t Know About Ye Olde Pirates

Posted by on 01 Nov 2017 under Maritime Facts and Stories

3 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Old-school Pirates

Shiver me timbers! Here are 3 things you probably didn’t know about pirates

While modern-day maritime piracy is certainly no laughing matter, and the violent influence of the piracy of yesteryear remains a very serious topic indeed, there are certain aspects of life as an old-school pirate that are completely fascinating. This is quite evident if you look at the countless books and films it has inspired over the years. As such, we thought we’d add a dash of fun to our monthly blog by starting a series on the life and times of old-school pirates.

To start with, here are 3 fascinating things you (probably) didn’t know about ye olde pirate life:

Their food was pretty boring

Long journeys through unchartered waters with infrequent stops on dry land meant the pirate’s daily fare was not very exciting. Food could very easily become spoiled or infested, so they had to be ingenious in stocking the larders aboard their vessels. One of the staples of the pirate diet was hard tack – a very hard cracker or biscuit made from flour, water and salt. These often became infested with weevils on long journeys, and the seamen would then take to eating it in the dark to improve their dining experience. If they were feeling charitable, ships cooks might boil it in rum and brown sugar to make it more palatable. Keen to try it? Here’s a recipe you can try at home.

Their booze was more imaginative

Pirates enjoyed their tipple (no surprise there!), and restocked their supplies by raiding other ships. As such, they enjoyed a variety of liquors that included port, brandy, beer and sherry. If they were feeling particularly fancy they might mix up some bumbo (rum, water, sugar and nutmeg), or rumfustian (raw eggs, sugar, sherry, gin and beer).

They went to great lengths to stay alive

Old-school pirates didn’t give up the ghost easily. In fact, they were rather good at staying alive. In times of near-starvation rations, they could be counted on to dream up ingenious solutions. Cannibalism aside (we’ll spare you those gory details), they often turned to eating leather goods like belts or satchels. One historic journal text recommends that you cut the leather into strips, soak it in water, beat it with stones to tenderise it, scrape off any residual hair and then roast or grill the leather before cutting it into very small, easily chewable pieces. Naturally, you’d also need a fair amount of water to wash it down.

These are just a few of the fun pirate-related facts we have to share. Keep an eye on the blog in coming months as we uncover more! In the meantime, you can also have a look at the original post by Cindy Vallar that inspired ours.




A Concise Guide to Marine Ropes & Their Uses

Posted by on 28 Sep 2017 under Maritime Facts and Stories

All About Maritime Ropes

All About Maritime Ropes

As one of the foremost marine suppliers and chandlery services in South Africa, the team at Link Ship Chandlers has a borderline geeky love of all thing shipping and sailing. This extends to all tools of the shipping trade, and marine ropes in particular. Here is a concise guide to the most common marine ropes and their uses (you never know when it might come in handy during a general knowledge quiz!).

Three-Strand Ropes

These ropes are normally made from fibres like nylon, polypropylene, sisal, copolymer or manila, and are the most affordable. It consists of yarns (many tiny fibres twirled together), which are combined into strands. Three-strand ropes are stretchy and good for splicing and knotting.

DID YOU KNOW? Unlike a simple overhand knot or a figure eight knot, a sailor’s knot does not come loose easily. The easiest way to tie a true stopper knot is by using your hand as a form. Just loop the end of the line twice around the palm of your hand, tuck the working end under the two loops, and then pull the loops off your hand.

Eight-Strand Ropes

Eight-strand ropes are normally made from polypropylene, polyester, or nylon; and comprises four left-hand-laid strands and four right-hand-laid strands. The torque of these ropes are well balanced, it can be spliced easily and it is resistant to abrasion, making it ideal for use on commercial vessels.

DID YOU KNOW? You can lessen rope corrosion by washing and drying your ropes in the sun every now and again to remove any grit and dirt that might have gotten stuck in its weave.

Twelve-Strand Ropes

Twelve-strand ropes are normally made from polyester or; and comprises six left-hand-laid strands and six right-hand-laid strands. These ropes can be spliced easily and it is resistant to abrasion, making it particularly durable and strong – ideal for use when dealing with extreme weights.

DID YOU KNOW? This phrase ‘show the ropes’ has its origins in the golden age of sailing, when understanding how to handle the ropes necessary to operate a ship and its sails was an essential maritime skill.

Double-Braid Ropes

Double-braid ropes are normally made from spectra core, nylon, and polyester; and comprises braided core that is sheathed in braided jacket cover. These ropes can withstand equal weight on core and jacket and boast a particularly high strength-to-weight ratio. As such, it is one of the most popular kinds of rope aboard any marine vessel.

DID YOU KNOW? After a piece of rope has been deliberately cut, sized, merged, and used for a particular task, it is referred to as a ‘line’, particularly in marine terminology.

Good to know, right? Keep an eye on the Link Ship Chandlers blog in coming weeks and months for more interesting and useful shipping-related info. We look forward to keeping you informed!




Proposed CT Harbour By-Law & What It Means

Posted by on 28 Sep 2017 under Ship Chandling

Cape Town Harbour

Cape Town Harbour

As one of the most trusted marine suppliers and chandlery services in South Africa, Link Ship Chandlers always keeps a close eye on local legislation that pertains to our industry and affects our harbours. A newly proposed Cape Town by-law has the potential to vastly improve the condition of these important spaces, so we took it upon ourselves to learn more about the pending shift in existing legislation.


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A Light-hearted Look at Ol’ Time Pirate Speak

Posted by on 03 Aug 2017 under Maritime Facts and Stories

How to Speak Like a Pirate

How to Speak Like a Pirate

In the high pressure maritime resupply industry, the one thing that is essential is a sense of humour and a love of fun. It is something that helps to keep us focused and breaks the tension of long hours and tight deadlines. With this in mind, we’d like to do the first of what will hopefully be many humorous blog posts that pay homage to our nautical interests while still putting a smile on your face. So, without further ado let’s dive into the deep end with a pirate’s guide to talking nautical:


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Mysterious Underwater Forest of Alabama

Posted by on 01 Aug 2017 under Maritime Facts and Stories

Underwater Forest

An Underwater Forest

Just over 24 km’s off of the coast of Alabama in the Gulf of Mexico there is one of nature’s biggest mysteries lying under 60 ft of water. This relic of ages past is a 50,000-year-old forest that was once millennia ago situated on dry land, but now lies at the bottom of the ocean. Scientists believe that the forest has lain hidden for all of this time, preserved from decay by up to 10 feet of sediment that was scooped off of the ocean floor during Hurricane Ivan in 2004.


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Africa Was the Focus at Nor-Shipping 2017

Posted by on 19 Jul 2017 under Ship Chandling

2017 Nor-Shipping Conference

2017 Nor-Shipping Conference – Image source: nor-shipping.com

Thanks to the fact that Africa is fast becoming a global force in today’s market places the 2017 Nor-Shipping Conference made the African continent a primary focus of this highly influential event. In fact, the maritime and ocean industries program for 2017 was even dubbed Africa@Nor-Shipping 2017, and it represented a major leap forward in the mutually beneficial business relationships that are currently being forged between Africa and Europe. At the launch of the event Birgit Liodden, a Nor-Shipping director, had this to say:


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10 Tips for Choosing the Right Ship Chandlers

Posted by on 19 Jul 2017 under Ship Chandling

How to choose the right ship chandlers for you

How to choose the right ship chandlers for you

Ship Chandlers are an important part of the maritime resupply chain and are literal goods retailers that provide a very specific service to ships who need to purchase equipment and supplies. It is a convenient way for a ship’s crew to restock and resupply, without having to make numerous transactions, or search for multiple suppliers. These resupply items can be anything from food and luxury goods, to safety equipment and mechanical maintenance supplies.


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What is a Ship Chandler?

Posted by on 21 Jul 2015 under Ship Chandling

What is a Ship Chandler?

What is a Ship Chandler?

Although ships chandlers have been around in one form or another since man first ventured into the ocean, many people are still unaware of what it is that we do. In its simplest form a ship chandler is a person or business that deals exclusively with the supplying of commodities to the international and local maritime industry, specifically ocean going commercial vessels, oil rigs and naval vessels.


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