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'Left field' question about old tugs


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Hi all but I think few.

 

I've plan to scratch build a Japanese steamer built in 1914 but having never scratch built a ship, it's a little daunting. So, I've decided to 'cut my teeth' on something smaller, a tug, namely the SA Everard

I've got deck plans and build process from one of ShipbuilderMN's downloads but it uses this wood material...and I don't have the weaponry for that so it's going to be plastic. With plastic, I can build a bridge, with windows but I need a bridge layout which I should imagine as being pretty basic.

So does anybody know what stuff I should have in there or preferably a photo, long shot I know?

 

Stuart

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The photo below is of the wheelhouse of the WW2 Flower class corvette HMCS Sackville. As a warship the voice tubes to the bridge above would not be needed for a tug. The brass structure furthest from the camera is the telegraph to the engine room. The nearest right item is a pelorus, which is used to take wearings to other ships and possible obstacles. Not sure what the other item is.

Sackville%2020%20closed%20bridge.jpg

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Thanks for getting back quickly Niall.

 

I thought a tug wheelhouse was basic but so is a Corvette it seems.

According to the deck plan, the wheelhouse on the tug is rather spartan and indicates a wheel and ER telegraphs one on port and other on starboard of the wheelhouse. (Not to sure why you would have two telegraphs for a one engine tug?)

So we could possibly have a Pelorus (compass), some electrical stuff for Nav lights, clock, a radio, possibly a radar screen... With the lack of evidence, I could put virtually anything I 'spose.

 

Stuart

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The two telegraphs in the tug wheelhouse would be interlinked so the tug's skipper could use either to indicate changes to engine revolutions - he would often be working watching out from either the port or starboard side windows rather than being midships.

 

You can see the modern extension of this practice on any cruise liner - 3 sets of telegraphs in this case - one midships for normal cruising and then an identical set in each bridge wing for docking - the bridge wings extend beyond the hull width so you can watch the waterline. 

 

With modern electronic controls even the 'steering wheel' is replicated on the bridge wings.

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One difference is a warship or larger merchant vessel has multiple people on the bridge. A tow boat would have 1 on the bridge and and a deck hand. Here and here are some vids to give you some modern ideas.

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2 hours ago, dnl42 said:

One difference is a warship or larger merchant vessel has multiple people on the bridge. A tow boat would have 1 on the bridge and and a deck hand. Here and here are some vids to give you some modern ideas.

Whilst those videos give a good impression of what a modern berthing tug looks like, Stuart is building a Thames lighter tug launched in 1939. They're both tugs, but not much similarity after that. The SA Everard would have been steered by hand, and would almost certainly have required a second person on the bridge to navigate and keep lookout. If the plans show two telegraphs. go with that; there would be a wheel mounted on a telemotor, a binnacle in front of it, and across the rear bulkhead most likely flag locker, bookcase and (folding?) chart table. On the front bulkhead below the windows probably stowage for binoculars, telephone, aldis lamp plus radio & radar (in later years) and a couple of small shelves to keep a brew on. Speaking of which, there'd likely be a kettle, mugs and the makings on top of the bookcase in later years as well. From photo's there doesn't appear to be an external door into the wheelhouse, this would most likely be on the forward bulkhead below the windows and I'd guess centre or slightly to port.

Also don't assume big ship = lots of people on the bridge, daylight hours it's most likely just the duty officer on his (or her!) own; sun down to sun up there'll be a watchkeeper up there as well. Berthing it could be just Pilot, Master and Helmsman.

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Cheers dnl42 but as Dave says, too modern.

 

@Dave Swindell, thanks, very informative. I do like the idea of building Everard with Radar fitted, added detail. I was going to ask a further question, that being access door to the wheelhouse. The deck plans indicate a door(s) on the rear bulkhead but what few photos I've seen, don't show any door(s) there. The plans don't show any doors on the forward bulkhead either. A door on the port side gives access  to the forward, bellow decks accommodation, confirmed on plans. Plans show a door on starboard side to gain access to galley that is forward of wheelhouse, this implies that a rear access may have been there but not captured on camera. Later photos show now two doors on starboard side, maybe one is for galley and t'other is to the wheelhouse...pure conjecture in my head. Thoughts?

 

Stuart

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Well this is a surprise, a name that I haven’t heard in quite a while.

 

My Dad was the mate on the SA during the 70’s and 80’s.

i spent quite a lot of my Summer holidays on her during the 80’s (when health and safety was applied a little less rigidly and certainly less appropriately!).

 

i have lots of photos from my Dad’s time on the SA including plenty from the wheel house, which by the way was always polished and gleaming.

 

I can answer the question on the two door on the starboard side, one was for cleaning storage and the other was for the heads.

Going from memory there was only a single door on the port side leading down to the forward cabin (eating area) and at deck level the small galley.

The door to the wheel house was on the port side at the rear.  The heavily hooded Radar scope was directly in front of the skippers seat on the starboard side of the wheelhouse.

 

The SA was a lovely boat, really handy and extremely powerful and for a tug actually extremely elegant.  Her Engineer Fred kept her in excellent condition and whilst she was a hard working boat she was never grimy (I played a small role in that).

 

I am travelling on business at present but will post a couple of photos over the weekend and can send you as many as you want (I must have 100’s), although many will have either my ugly juvenile mug in them or my cousins!

 

Regards Mike

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@blackmme, welcome aboard mate.

 

Well that has cleared the doors and access question. I thought I saw an image of a small ladder on the port side but couldn't see a door. As for the wheelhouse layout, a pic will paint a thousand words, so any pics you want to post of wheelhouse, decks, equipment, etc would be grateful.

Hoping to start a SLOW WiP next week once I've got my 'stuff' together.

 

Stuart

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2 hours ago, blackmme said:

The door to the wheel house was on the port side at the rear.

Welcome to Britmodeller Mike, and thanks for confirmation on the door, I'd come to that conclusion last night after looking at the photo's I could find on the net. I couldn't make out the door, but there was a handrail down from the top of the engine casing to the deck immediately aft of the wheelhouse in a couple of shots, so logic put a door there.

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Thank you for the welcome, I’ve actually been on the site for a few years lurking and modelling vicariously through the extraordinary skills of the modellers who contribute here.

 

I was a fanatical model builder as a kid and have just started to make a few again (Dragon’s Mercury to Apollo stuff) as well as being a quite passionate 1/18th collector (F1 and Aircraft).

 

Back to the SA, the wheelhouse was dominated internally by the Telemotor, Hydraulic steering mechanism (think good sized kitchen table in plan area and about 4 ft high) on top of this was a cover which doubled as the chart (tea and biscuits) table and above it attached to the roof was chart storage.

There were two brass telegraphs in the Wheelhouse one on the starboard side for the skipper and a repeater to the left of the compass binnacle which sat centrally at the front of the wheelhouse.  Both of these though were disconnected and engine control was by a far more industrial lever next to the skippers chair.

On the left hand side of the wheelhouse immediately forward of the door was bench seating for 2 or 3 people.

 

The wheelhouse was quite a ‘busy’ space especially when running up or down river on a cold day when it might have 4 or 5 people in it.

 

Dave’s description really was pretty accurate!

 

Oh and I’m going from memory here but I’m pretty certain that she did have speaking tubes, just that no one would have heard a thing over the 800hp diesel and Fred was a bit deaf anyway!

 

Regards Mike

Edited by blackmme
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4 hours ago, blackmme said:

I will have a rummage over the weekend and get them over to you.

I look forward to seeing picture of the model in a few years ;-D

Looking forward to whatever pics you manage to find. Failing that, a quick sketch of wheelhouse could be good too. As for waiting a few years, I hope not. The biggest danger is liking this boat/ ship scratch building too much and it kicks the 'normal' stuff down the road!

 

I plan on building in 1/144 scale but I might go 1/72, so hopefully it will be sizeable enough to get the detail in the wheelhouse and let's not forget other details like winches and stuff.

 

Stuart

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Utmost apologies for the delay Courageous, I have been working abroad over the last few weeks and of course it would have to be highly related to the maritime world!

 

I have sorted out a few photos that show some details and give some indication of the high level of polish and elbow grease that was applied to the SA certainly up to mid eighties.

 

These are just the ones that I had to hand, I need to get up into my loft to search through the loose photo’s up there.

 

i will provide a diagram of the bridge layout.

The picture of my Dad in the wheelhouse shows the radar display in front, behind Dad the green box is the VHF Radio gear.

The engine control was not by telegraph but by a industrial looking throttle control to the right of the radar scope hood (if memory serves)

 

Apologies for the atmosphere shot, that is the SA and RA at their moorings just after dawn,

very special days for me.

 

45665575272_3120f629c2_k.jpgIMG_0083 by blackmme1, on Flickr

 

45665572812_a9e21637af_k.jpgIMG_0085 by blackmme1, on Flickr

 

44991568804_804c5bb552_k.jpgIMG_0089 by blackmme1, on Flickr

 

45716288811_67d1026840_k.jpgIMG_0090 by blackmme1, on Flickr

 

 

Let me dig dig out some more and please ask any and all questions I will do my best to reach back 35 years and do my best to remember!

 

Regards Mike

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by blackmme
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Glad to see you back.

Some useful photos there Mike, looking forward to your trawl through the photo years.

I have started a WiP on the SA Everard, working on the hull at the moment, then it's deck time.

 

Stuart

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