Viper was built at the Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering
Co.'s yard in Govan in 1906 and was 315 feet in length. She had
three steam turbines powering the triple screws, making her one
of the company's fastest ships with a top speed of 22 knots. The
steamer worked the Ardrossan-Belfast route from 1906 to 1914. She
served as a troop carrier in the English Channel during the First
World War but returned to operation on her pre-war route in 1919.
However the unrest in Ireland resulted in the decline in passenger
traffic with Scotland and Viper was sold to the Isle of Man Steam
Packet Co in 1920 and renamed Snaefell.