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Author Topic: Tug Steering  (Read 3007 times)

Tom Eccles

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Tug Steering
« on: September 23, 2007, 09:37:42 PM »

I am building an example of Mountfleet's Cruiser Tug and the construction has raised a question for you guys who know about these things.

Steering (on the real thing) is operated by a steering house set midships at the rear of the engine room casing. From this chains feed via pulleys down port and Stbd. to a steering quadrant mounted over the rudder. I am sure this system worked but I would guess there was quite an element of free play in the system.

My question is - How were the steering inputs transmitted from the helm to the steering engine? Was it as I suspect by hydraulics or was there some wonderfully simple mechanical system?

Cheers
Clegg
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titan

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2007, 11:21:38 PM »

  Re tug steering was probably through a series of rods from the bridge to the steering motor lets face it if thay had hydraulics thay would have made the hole system hydraulic and done away with the chains ;)happy building.
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Tom Eccles

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2007, 02:11:29 PM »

Thanks a lot Titan,
If it was by means of mechanical linkages I would have loved to have seen how they compare to light aircraft controls. Method NOT size!

It is good to see that someone is attending to something other that the scratch v kit debate.

Thanks again

Clegg
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cbr900

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2007, 04:34:37 AM »

You could also run you chains right through on either side direct to your steering servo................


Roy
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2007, 04:48:47 AM »

these may help. I used these to get ideas for my tug as there was very little info.
Peter
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2007, 04:56:12 AM »

next
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2007, 05:04:28 AM »

and
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Tom Eccles

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2007, 07:25:58 PM »

For cbr900 & HS93.

Gentlemen, thank you. HS93- I am guessing there are photos of your build in the group you posted and it looks superb.

Can I just point out that I very much welcome your input but my original question referred to the Cruiser. The steering engine is to the rear of the engine room casing on this vessel and I was/am interested to learn how a movement of the ships wheel would be transmitted to the steering engine so as to move the rudder in something approaching the same "feel" as the wheel. I am not a naval or ex naval person and I am interested to know how it is done on a fairly hefty piece of kit.

Thanks again for your valuable input (and some great photos)

Clegg
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2007, 08:02:31 PM »

Sorry about that I must start reading all the posts,, anyway only one is mine the HS93 ,  what year was you Cruiser built as there are about five when I looked in my book one about 1880 one 1904 and 1953 if you could let me know ill have a look  Peter
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2007, 08:20:45 PM »

Found this in P N Thomas book steam tugs , and it goes with the deck plates at the back of the engine housing.

Peter
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Tom Eccles

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #10 on: September 26, 2007, 11:09:27 PM »

Thanks Peter the description pretty much meets what I know about the vessel - not a lot!

I think this one was built in Glasgow in the early fifties and was one of the last examples of steam powered tug built there.

Sadly the written description covers what is obvious on the model, it seams to me that the original linkage would have been mechanical when the steering engine was behind the wheelhouse. I am just fascinated to know what kind of a mechanical linkage would be needed between wheelhouse and steering engine. As I said in my original posting the free play must have made life interesting at times.

Thanks again for your help.
Clegg
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HS93 (RIP)

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #11 on: September 27, 2007, 12:28:56 AM »

the Tug was the last steam tug to be built in the UK Ill try and photo copy some more and post it there are lots of snippets in the book but they are all over the place ,, ill post in the next few days but its worth trying to get a copy for all the other detail

Peter
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farrow

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2007, 05:44:52 PM »

All the vessels I have worked on with chain in thier steering system, usually have a spring tensioner in it. Is there a possibilty of hydraulic steering from the wheel to the steering motor which then drove chains to the quadrant, as in those days long hydraulic runs and flexi hoses were a new idea to small craft as tugs. The oldest vessel I worked on was the RMAS St Margarets of 1943. She was all steam including the steam steering motor. But the wheel to the steering motor was hydraulic.

RMAS master
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catengineman

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #13 on: October 18, 2007, 07:22:32 PM »

I would hazard at a guess that the rudder chains would have run around a gypsy that could have been assisted via a DC electric motor and thrust clutches (I've worked on a tug on the Thames with this very same idea) the tugs name was RANA operated at that time by A C Bennett and Sons

The thrust from the helm would slide the gypsy against a  clutch system on a running motor  and that would assist turning the rudder. A very complicated idea on todays standards but then it was probably the best way to get power assisted steering. There were 'bottle screws' at the quadrant ends of the chains and on one side there was if memory serves me I can remember no springs in the system.

R,

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towtug

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #14 on: October 18, 2007, 09:11:12 PM »

The smallest vessel I sailed on was a converted trawler operated by the London County Council in the 1960s which had steam steering. Moving the wheel on the bridge operated two vertical rams one up and one down. These forced a mixture of water and glycerine, I think, to and from the steering engine which ran continuously. This engine in turn moved the chains in the correct direction to move the quadrant attached to the rudder stock.  ::)
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farrow

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Re: Tug Steering
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2007, 04:38:38 PM »

Getting back to your thread, I would say Hydraulic as you say the vessel was diesel driven so that rules out steam. What chain systems I have seen usually had bottle screws to tension the chains some old scuttlebuts with chains had a spring in the system running in the chain trays on the deck, this was to take the shock loading from the sea waves. The last I saw rigged like that was on the old steam MoD waterboats.
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