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Aug 31.  A late summer day at the beach, where a new “towel drying rack” has been adopted and a bumper crop

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of sand awaits the erosion of winter, perhaps?  All photos here taken by Barbara Barnard.

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Sept 1.  A tug (Trevor?) moves a crane barge to where the “drying rack”/piping needs to be fished out for transport to the next job.

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Sept 13.  The remaining pipe on the beach, no longer serving to dry swimmers’ towels, awaits dismantling and

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allows for closer inspection.

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This Rockaway series was of course motivated by Hurricane Sandy and the photos of Rockaway by my friend Barbara in the past 12 months.  Barbara, many thanks.   Here was my Nemo to Flag Day post, which started with a mystery house.

And now it looks like the Nola “make it right” rebuilding plan is coming to the Rockaways.  Click here for the design for “resilient house.”    Here’s an earlier article.

Click here for a project/business entirely created by the devastation of trees during the storm.  It’s not maritime, water,  or even specifically landthreshold related, but is quite interesting.

What’s this?  Answer follows.    And I just stumbled onto this blog . . . Crewboat Chronicles.    Crew boat or crewboat?

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OK . . . asking questions seems to be where this post wants to head.  What’s Stagetide?  The foto was taken on the hard not far north of Atlantic City and with the help of Fred Mallett.

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Here are two crewboats I got a blurry foto of a few weeks ago in the KVK.

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Crewboat Sabine plays lots of roles.  Is she doing a visual inspection of dredge pipe here?

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She also ferries crew and supplies between shore and projects, hydrographically surveys an area pre- and post-material removal, and shoos away non-project boats getting too close to the work.  Sabine was built in New Iberia in 1980.

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I’ve not been able to find out much about Stagetide.

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Circling back to the top foto . . . it was the Swiftboat from the Washington Navy Yard, a vessel whose design alludes to its crewboat origins, I think.   Here’s a post I did two years ago on swiftboats.

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All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Related:  The Bayonne Bridge logo I’ve used on this blog since 2006 was taken from the USACE vessel . . . Hocking.  I believe that’s a crewboat, the first I ever rode in.  Anyone know where Hocking was built?

Here’s where the “leverman” sits for a twelve-hour shift as the C. R. McCaskill slews port to starboard 400′ once each three and a half minutes.   Another way of saying that is  the dredge moves using a five-point mooring system: two swing anchors, two breast anchors and one stern anchor to move forward or back.  A different configuration uses a spudded idler barge;  in this case, the “swing” is longer and takes more more time.   Food gets delivered so that the leverman aka dredge operator can monitor all these screens and respond so that dredging can proceed 24/7 as long as equipment and conditions permit.  More on food later.

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Slewing . . . drawing on cables attached to positioned anchors and pivoting on a stern point . . . requires that the 30” diamater hose be able to flex.  Hence, the easy curved slack before the piping to the beach.

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The crewboat in the distance alternates between hydrographic survey work and other tasks.  More on that in a moment.  More crewboats in a future post.

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Attachment at the stern is a ball and socket joint . . . like your hip.

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Here’s the starboard GE engine, part of the power supply to the dredge.

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Here is another view of the two huge hull-mounted pumps that do the work.

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Another task of the crewboat is illustrated here:  recreational boaters sometimes allow their curiosity to override any sense of danger caused by a busy, slewing dredge.

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The helicopter happened to be here on assignment to photograph the work from the air.

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About the food, here’s  mission control presided over by Edwina Arthur, a member of the 30-50 person crew.

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Food rules and pecking order are clearly posted.

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Captain Randy Guidry, my host for this tour,  proudly displays the builder’s plate, Corn Island Shipyard in Indiana, where the hull was constructed.

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As I stated in the previous post, McCaskill’s part in the dredging/beach replenishment has now ended and vessels and crew have moved south for the next job.

Many thanks to Captain Guidry, Jan Andrusky, and all the other fine folks at Weeks Marine for this tour.

All fotos, text, and (any inadvertent errors) by Will Van Dorp.

This post is similar to the Loose Ends 1 post I did about the strip of Jersey that faces Manhattan.

Know the place in the foto below?  It’s changing quickly.  I took this foto yesterday, August 27, 2013.  More on this pier later in this post.

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Know this place?  I took this foto July 4, 2012; Maurania III and P. O. Edward Byrne were there for the fireworks.      It’s had many lives and is about to change again.    Pier 57 was built around the time I was born after a fire destroyed its predecessor.

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Pier 56 . . .  as shown in this foto by Seth Tane in the early 1980s . . . is now habitat, as shown here.

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The top foto shows Cromwell Pier, a place I never visted.   Click here for a great set of memories showing folks who did.

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If you used to frequent this section of Staten Island, get down there today if you want to see the last of it.

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More piers soon.

Other than Seth’s, these fotos  .  . by Will Van Dorp.

Click here and here for other Weeks cranes at work.

For my favorite bowsprite pier post, click here for some eerie pics.

I’m back, with lots of gallivanting to catch up, but first . .  a whole lotta fotos from this morning in the sixth boro.  Any ideas what’s going on here?  What is that gray blur in the center of the foto and why are the gulls so frenzied?  Be forewarned . . . this post has so many twists/turns . . . it’s divided into parts, even though I took all these fotos in the span of less than an hour.

Part 1

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Answer:  It’s how over three million cubic yards of sand is being added to Rockaway Beach . .  at least for a while.  Here’s what the NY Daily News says about it.  Here’s an article and video from Dredging Today.

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And here . . . off in the Rockaway Inlet are the machines mining and pumping the sand, seen closer up in this recent  tugster post.

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Part 2.  Notice  the piping coming from the stern of McCaskill.

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I could not resist wondering about these birds whose name rhymes with “lovers.”

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Part 3.  Follow this sweep of fotos as I turn to the left.

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An Atlantic City billboard on Far Rockaway?  Is a mixed up sense of geography part of Sandy’s legacy?  I keep turning left.

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A Potemkin village and that’s an A  Train station to the right?

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See the silvery cars of the A train?  It’s a Boardwalk Empire set in the wasteland of eastern Rockaway Beach . . . . I was hoping to buy some of that food at those prices!

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Of course, I had to look behind.

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I half expected to find some Aral Sea boats back here too.

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Part 4.  Once back on the boardwalk, I saw this fishing boat about a quarter mile from shore.  I’m guessing it’s unrelated to the sand piping and pumping, but   . . . who knows.

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All fotos today by Will Van Dorp.

On July 3, 1776, John Adams wrote this to his wife Abigail:  “The day will be most memorable in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival…It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade…bonfires and illuminations (fireworks) from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forevermore.”

I wonder if Abigail believed him.

Last night around 1900 hr, Brendan Turecamo (above) and Catherine Turecamo pushed their Macy’s loads upriver.  I think two other Macy’s barges  were pushed by Kimberly Turecamo and Jennifer Turecamo.

If I didn’t know better, I’d think that the Macy’s 34th Street megastore had embarked on short sea shipping of goods.   Do you know that as a teenager, R. H. Macy  worked on a Nantucket whaling ship, Emily Morgan, during which time he got a tattoo, which is the star that still today in the company logo.

A motley crew of spectators ventured into the river for the show,

a very motley crew indeed.

Other tugs took some time off as well . . . Maurania III here, and Quantico Creek and the other Pegasus over on the other side of the river.  Maybe others too.

The two Harley tugsHMS Liberty and St Andrews–hung out with 1907-built Pegasus at the sanitation pier.

It appears here that a contingent of the  NYC Air Force is escorting in Hornblower Infinity.  As it said, it APPEARS that way.    Anyone I know working there?

343 summons the safety spirits.

Lots of spectators wait on a contingent of NYC’s passenger/dinnerboat fleet.

Darkness falls. Tension builds as thunderstorms do their own illumination to the north and the south.

Around 2130 h . . . opening salvo.

These fotos do not capture that percussive blasts and echoes off the sanitation pier . . . so use your imagination.

Too bad John and Abigail and all the other signers weren’t here.

Well, maybe they were.

I did hear some creaking and squeaking on the pier.

Happy

Independence

all the time.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

AND Pegasus and you have something else to celebrate.  Remember the Partners in Preservation voting lots of you all did back in May?  Pegasus and Lehigh Valley 79 ended in 14th place, and I thought that meant they got no money.  Au contraire, they DID get a hefty sum . ..  $140,000 to split!   . . .to be used for preservation, and on a 1907-built vessel, there’s a lot of preservation to be done.  So thanks much for voting.  If you want to see Pegasus close-up, come down to Pier 25 west side of Manhattan . . .

Actually that title captures 98% of this blog’s +1800 posts.  And just as elsewhere in Gotham or anywhere else, so on the sixth boro what work you see depends entirely on your station.  And my station this particular day was Tchefuncte River’s  Equitable Equipment‘s hull # 1428, delivered in August 1966 as Red Star Towing‘s New Haven.  Now she’s Freddie K. Miller;  I took the foto below just over five years ago when she was Stapleton Service.    I use this foto here because a downside of being on the tow is my inability to get a foto OF the tow.

At 0520 hrs, dawn was sweetest and coolest, from this point a mile south of Miller’s Launch.  When I reported at 0530, the Miller’s yard was already busy.

The crew of Freddie K Miller’s had a job: pick up Weeks Crane Barge 552 and its crew and proceed to the East River ConEd.  By 0615, crew was making the tow.

0645 we were crossing west to east across the Upper Bay.  Buchanan 1 was towing a scow  and

Douglas B. Gurion headed west for passengers.  The ferry is named for a victim of September 11.

0715 . ..  near Red Hook container port, we passed this ex-MSC vessel Transatlantic.  I will post more MSC soon.

0730 . . . we had passed under the Brooklyn Bridge and now could feast on this potpourri of  Manhattan skyline.  Side by side on the right are Gehry’s flowing-facade 8 Spruce (2011) and Gilbert’s spiky-tower (1913).

0745 . . . we pass GMD Shipyard, where morning shift has already started its work on Massachusetts Maritime’s TS Kennedy  (1967).

0815 . . . the crew have tied to the ConEd dock and Weeks’ crew has begun setting the spuds, for stability as the load is transferred.  My very general understanding of this load is that ConEd purchased equipment from  Manufacturer M.  Company A trucked it to the Weeks yard because installation by land (by Company B) was less feasible than installation from water.  Miller’s job was to move equipment on crane barge to ConEd so that Weeks–with collaboration from Company B–could set equipment exactly where it will be used.

0915 . . . first equipment is lifted and rotated over the East River counterclockwise to avoid obstacles on land, and at

0920 . . .  crew guides unit into exact location.  If half an inch off, then lift and get it right.

1010 . . . next piece of equipment is moved.   While the tug stands by with the crane barge, Miller crew does fine carpentry work in wheelhouse.

Since my self-appointed job is to record details, check out Carolina IV, sailing westbound on the East river . . . hailing from Stockholm,  Yes, sailing!  and  . . . yes . . . that Stockholm while

eastbound are Gage Paul Thornton and a floatplane.

1115 . . . heavy-duty pipe elbow gets lifted into place. Tower protruding from the building just right of MetLife is Chrysler Building.

1215 . . . the spuds are up,  the crane boom lowered and secured, Freddie K Miller has spun off the dock and now heads back westbound for the Weeks yard.  If the grayish vessel in the foreground is locally known as a “honey boat,” then this has to be one of the sweetest scenes possible in these parts.

1300 . . . as we approach the Weeks yard we cross Buchanan 12 towing three stone scows, possibly headed for a quarry up the Hudson.

1330 . . . Freddy K Miller is now “light,” having left the barge at the Weeks yard.  Ever Decent is outbound for sea, and by this writing is southbound off Cape Hatteras.

Meanwhile, close to Manhattan, Asphalt Star takes on bunker fuel from a Vane barge.  That black hose . . . that’s like the hose at the pump where you fill your car tank.

By 1400, I’ve said my thanks to the crew of Freddy K Miller —who await their next job on this or another vessel–and the dispatcher, and take a break to examine a familiar sight:  Alice, she who inspired my first ever blogpost!!

Back on the bank and before heading home, I get another shot;  she’s loaded deep with her Canadian aggregates.

Imagine my delight, then, later that day getting a foto from Mike C. of Alice Oldendorff north of the Navy Yard self-unloading her cargo of crushed stone.

Many thanks to all the folks at Miller’s Launch.  Also, thank you Mike for sending along this last foto.  All other fotos by Will Van Dorp.

I watched from the southwesternmost corner of Manhattan, near Pier A.

The sky made drama and Statue was nearly obscured.

Incoming container vessel MSC Charleston had to briefly delay its cargo delivery to allow this entourage to pass.

On the shore, loud and excited schoolkids–hundreds it seemed –got to watch the procession.  Who knows what impact it will make on them . . .  more on this at the end of the post.

I’ve never seen so many helmets on  a tug as were on Shelby today.

Time to get Enterprise up river, and

time for Little Lady to get passengers back to New Jersey.

The crane on Weeks 533 looks like it could lift the Statue

if need be.

Kathleen

and Elizabeth have fewer crew.  I wonder how much I’d have to donate to be a sponsor.

It’s time for Miriam Moran to get

a non-helmeted crew up there too.

All fotos of the starship and the star ships by Will Van Dorp.

Ray Bradbury, age 91, died today.  He had a profound impact on me.  And on why he started writing, here’s what’s reported:

“Throughout his life, Bradbury liked to recount the story of meeting a carnival magician, Mr. Electrico, in 1932. At the end of his performance Electrico reached out to the twelve-year-old Bradbury, touched the boy with his sword, and commanded, Live forever! Bradbury later said, I decided that was the greatest idea I had ever heard. I started writing every day. I never stopped.”

I’m grateful he got to meet Mr. Electrico.

Damaged?  Spamaged!  15:10:59?

15:10:40?

15:14:05?

15:15:39?

The wind was howling!  Bravo to the crews of all the vessels, and Shelby . . .  the world’s only tugboat with wings.

Fotos by Will Van Dorp.

And this video is fine, but “unceremoniously aboard a barge “    what is this?  If a “barge” is regal for the diamond jubilee queen, why is it NOT for Enterprise?

Six weeks ago, the Shuttle Enterprise flew over the sixth boro; today the saga continued.

14:46 . . .  the tow moves through Grassy Bay and Winhole Channel with JFK Airport in the distance.  This too is the sixth boro.

14:51 . . . it passes just beyond the approach to the Beach Channel Swing Bridge of the A subway, yes . .  subway.

15:13 . . . with an assist from Susan Miller, the tow squeezes through and makes

for the Cross Bay Memorial Bridge, where several hundred watch . . . and are watched.  Folks on the bridge cheered and excited baitfish churned up the surface a mere 52 feet below.

Shelby leads and

Kathleen tails.   USCGC 47315 Sandy Hook flanks.

Whoever rode those subways got a show.   And given the challenge of fitting through the rail bridge on the gusty day it was, I guess it could be said that shuttle and tug crews demonstrated they could “boldly go where no shuttle has gone before.”

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

For John “Control Geek” Huntington’s take, click here.  We happened to be on the same bridge watching the same unique event and so mesmerized by it, we didn’t even realize we rubbed elbows!!

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My job . . . Summer AND Fall 2014

Graves of Arthur Kill

Click to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

Seth Tane American Painting

My other blogs

My Babylonian Captivity

Reflections of an American hostage in Iraq, 20 years later.

Henry's Obsession

My imaginings and bowsprite's renderings of Henry Hudson's trip through the harbor 400 years ago.

Tale of Two Marlins

Blue Marlin spent 600+ hours loading tugs and barges in NYC Sixth Boro. Click on image for presentation made to NY Ship Lore and Model Club, July 25, 2011.

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