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“A butterfly among moths” flitted past lower Manhattan yesterday, northbound  on the North River, albeit a butterfly that hadn’t yet fully shed its cocoon.

“The boat has a colorful history, beginning as a small trading vessel along the South China coast. It reputedly once belonged to a Chinese warlord who had to sell it in haste to flee the country. Believe it or not, Robert Ripley purchased it in 1946 and owned it until he died…  It was sailed across the Pacific Ocean in 1939 and then to the East Coast the following year.”  All that was written here in 1985.   Mon Lei is not to be confused with a junk called Free China.

Maybe she flitted as a butterfly in my mind, but yesterday Mon Lei was being towed.   I should have gotten this photo without the excursion boat in the distance.

I had forgotten that the bow was squared off until I returned to my post from that year.

It’s truly unique, and I hope it doesn’t berth too far upstream because

I’d love to see it again, sans shrink-wrap and with junk-rig sails set on all three masts.  Here’s a long article from 2017 with black-and-white photos from the distant past, including one with the unique Robert Ripley playing mahjong, believe it or not.

Here’s another unique sailing vessel of the sixth boro, Lettie G. Howard.  And if you don’t see it in the next day and a half, you won’t see it in New York any time soon, as it heads west by sailing east:  Lake Erie bound by way of Nova Scotia and the Gulf of Saint Lawrence.  Maybe my friends along the way will get photos of her.  The Seaway and its locks might provide good opportunities for photos.

And to round out this post, here’s a Nautor Swan for sale, currently tied up in North Cove.  At a bit over $1.6 million, it could be yours, or mine, or someone else’s.

Like a RORO and a tanker that have appeared here before, Tugela is named for a South African river.

Quite the mast!

Finally, not the same black hulled sailboat, it entered the Upper Bay last week passing the Quarantine Station.  Anyone know if a facility by that name exists there  today?

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who should take walks around the land’s edge every weekend.

Here’s Mon Lei‘s homepage.  Somewhere  (?)  I recall seeing photos of her in the 1976 bicentennial harbor muster.  Also, not surprisingly, bowsprite dabbled with junk for a time.

Unrelated:  Here’s a voyaging sailboat from the Philippines. 

 

By now, many of you have read about the governor’s April 17 decision to use “33 barges of Tappan Zee Bridge recycled materials and 30 vessels” to build reefs at six locations north and south of Long Island.    Well, an expeditious eight days later, the first two vessels were already on the Hudson headed south.  Glenn Raymo and I positioned ourselves to document this first shipment.

Glenn positioned himself at the Walkway, where the tugs/barges were soon after daybreak.

Brian Nicholas led the procession with Witte 1405.  The Canal tender–aka T6–seemed like a toy on the barge.  For photos of some off the tenders, including T6 from four years ago, click here.

Here’s a great shot of the stripped, decapitated, and “environmentally clean”  tender.

Rebecca Ann followed pushing a dump scow.  A source says that T6 dates from the 1920s, and I’d guess that the dump scow vintage is similar.  To put this in context, check out this video of a 1928 Mack dump truck.

If you’ve never been on the Walkway, it’s a repurposed rail bridge with a “walk way.”   To catch the tow on the south side of the walkway, Glenn just stepped about 20 feet and got the next two shots.

 

Four and a half hours later, the day was bright, sun having burnt off the fog, and the tow was approaching Bear Mountain Bridge.  Walkways exist on either side of the Bridge, but one needs to cross three lanes of traffic to get from one side to the other, so I opted to take photos from the upstream side only.

Given the size of Witte 1405 relative to the single tender, I’m wondering why the urgency.  More fodder for the reef could have fit.

 

 

Note the chains used to

open the dump doors.

Many thanks to Glenn for use of his photos.  All other by Will Van Dorp, who’s thinking that if the governor holds to his word, 28 more Erie/Barge Canal vessels will descend the Hudson as part of the Reef Express.

If there exists a need for someone to document the final journey–ie, sixth boro to an actual reef location, I’d gladly step forward.

For interior shots–and more–of T6 not that long ago, click here, thanks to Tug44.

Joyce D. Brown with a resplendent paint job on a bright spring morning.

A new boat entering the Narrows in springtime.  Know it?

Sea Oak, which I last saw in Southport, NC.

Crystal Cutler, also looking great in the spring sunshine.

The extraordinary Bosco, passing the boscage of Shooters Island.

The vertically oriented Genesis Vision, previously known as Superior Service.

Paul Andrew, once sported a respectable Christmas tree here (scroll).

Another great name .  . Sea Fox.

Marjorie B McAllister, perfectly positioned with the arrow on CMA CGM Almaviva,

Rebecca Ann, with a great origin story that maybe someone who reads this knows better than I do.  All I remember is that it was locally built . . . with spare steel . . . I hope I’m right about that.  And she’s currently involved in a project that might place her in tomorrow’s post.  I believe she first appeared in this blog in 2010 here (scroll).

Any guesses?

Answer below.

Yes, Seeley, which was once a Vane Brothers boat called Vane Brothers.

All photos taken in april 2018 by Will Van Dorp.

What is the possible identity of the Moran tug below?  We really don’t know.

The source is Xtian Herrou, a regular tugster reader and commenter.  He writes:  “Seen yesterday during a local model expo at Crozon  in Brittany, France.  The tug is very small (scale 1/400) and there is not really a name, just white tag.  For details about the SS Brasil (1957),  you can read the panel on picture 6326

Personally, I’m thrilled that a model maker in France does a Moran tug.

And a question from a reader, Mike Hatami, who did not take the photo.  Mike provided follow-up on the repurposing of NYC DEP vessel Newtown Creek two years ago here.

What is this vessel?  Is it a USN vessel?

 

A possible answer is found  here.   “We use these specifically in San Diego. I don’t know where this picture was taken, but we have a least a couple of these things tied to the pier right across from all the submarines. This exact type of tug. I don’t know how you guys do it in Norfolk, and hopefully I’ll never find out.”  And

“It’s a security tug. Those protective barriers surrounding the water portion of the navy base don’t move themselves. It’s the equivalent of opening the gate for cattle to go in and out. Unlock it, unlatch it, swing it open, and close it when the ship has passed.    Source: Submariner.”

Is this true?  Is this really a USN commissioned vessel?

Thanks for reading and contributing, Xtian and Mike.

 

 

Click here for the first installment of this story . . .

Tuesday 0630.  Note here that crews have already begun lowering the booms of these new gantry cranes in order to fit under the VZ Bridge.

Wednesday 0915.  Plans were to begin the transit, but an anchor windlass refused to cooperate.

Wednesday 1030.  And the fog began to descend.

Thursday 0630.  It was a glorious morning.

Thursday 1000.  It’s a go.  That’s Media Boat 4 in the foreground.

1026.  I read there’s a 10′ clearance, but my perspective–faulty–said otherwise.

1027.  Yup . . . plenty clearance.

1140. near the Bayonne Bridge

1141.  James D. Moran in the hard hat area.

1146.

1147.  Under the bridge and then a turn into Port Elizabeth.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Read a Staten Island Advance article here.

 

Ivory Coast

Christian Reinauer

Ross Sea

C. Angelo

Scott Turecamo, New Hampshire, and Brendan Turecamo

Curtis and RTC 82

Mary Alice and Nan Lin Wan

Pearl Coast and Cement Transporter 1801

MSC Maureen, Jonathan C. Moran, and Kirby Moran

All photos taken in April 2018 by Will Van Dorp.

 

Eric McAllister went out the Narrows to

meet her ship out beyond Swinburne.

 

It seems the gulls are excited by whatever chum follows in the wake, chum made from all those shad.

The shine on the hull suggested a fairly new ship, and

in fact, I’d never seen this one before,

Grande New York.

How grand.  She was completed at CSC Jinling Shipyard in late October 2017.  I don’t know if this was her first arrival in New York.  Sister ships are Grande Baltimora, already in service, and Grande Halifax . . . yet to be completed.

Here are previously posted other “Grande” Grimaldi vessels:  G Senegal,  G Marocco, and G Guinea, which came into the sixth boro early Monday and departed yesterday.

And here’s the rest of the title . . . as a way to show the varying weather.

 

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Call it a sea change.  The air warms up although the water is still very cold.

Sea Lion does what it has all winter, but what’s different is the reappearance of non-workboats.  Sea Lion has some history on this blog.

Evening Light moves north in anticipation of summer.

Pleasure boats move into an environment that has been consistently about work throughout the winter.

Mischief passes New Champion and Stephen Dann, which brought in highway ramp sections.  Would these sections be for the Bayonne, the Tappan Zee, or another?

Small party boats

head out to catch what spring fish migrate in. Should there be a Really Never Snuff Express?

Bigger party boats appear as well.

Fast open boats and

slower enclosed cruisers, of all sorts

pass Atlantic Salvor as it returns from another dredge spoils run.

Norwegian Escape has smaller boats

accompany it on its way into the Narrows and the harbor.  If my numbers are correct, Escape has capacity for 5999 souls, including crew, which is more than the population of Taos, Marfa, and well more than the town where I grew up.

I’ve not seen many of these smaller boats since early last fall, and on a warm Sunday, they start to reappear.  Drive safe; work safe.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, whose other posts about small craft can be read here.

 

After 66 days at sea, Zhen Hua 20 dropped anchor in Gravesend Bay yesterday after a few hours after I departed.  But thanks to Bjoern of New York Media Boat, this phase of the visit has been documented.

Given the ubiquity of containers, there’s a worldwide demand for the cranes;  according to their website, 70% of this style crane worldwide is produced by ZPMC.   As the container ships get larger, a need for cranes with greater boom reach is created.  ZPMC Netherlands has a fleet currently of 22 ships to idle these seemingly impossible loads.   Since 2012, ZPMC has successfully completed “1070 voyages to 180 ports in 80 countries.”

Note the Miller’s Launch crew boat off starboard bow.

Booms must be lowered before the delivery will fit under the Bayonne Bridge on the transit to Port Elizabeth . . .  alter this week.

 

Many thanks to Bjoern for use of these photos.  For more info on New York Media Boat–actually there are several vessels–check them out online or see and “like” them on FB.

Here was a Zhen Hua vessel in port back in 2007–the first I ever saw–from 2008 here, and from 2014 . .  herehere, and here.

Marginally related:  One would not need these cranes at one point in the Comoros;  this practice I’ve read has ended.

 

It seats one to power nothing, but makes a good puzzle here in the PowWow River some years ago.  In dry season, you walked through the gate and sat here to fish or just sit.

Poseidon’s Sea-Bee Pusher power unit has

has no seat, so you make your own with your own, complete with a foot rest.

You notice you can’t drive Urger from a seat; but there is a seat

for the engineer of this bell boat.

If we assumed the engineer’s seat, this handle would be our major control over this 19-ton Atlas-Imperial.   You can see the seat on this youtube clip of the engine running.

Since we’re on the Erie Canal, check out the wheel and controls of Seneca, which is also steered by standing crew.

I know I know . . . this is hard to read, but tug Seneca (1930) had a career with the USN in Boston and Brooklyn before it was purchased for work in the Erie Canal, in 1960.  GE?  yes, it’s diesel electric.

I’ve got lots of helm seats (or lack thereof) from Bart Hakse aka Zee Bart, who delivers vessels around the world with Redwise.  He took the photos below on a naval vessel.  Nation?  Zee Bart also finds time to do a blog called Uglyships.

 

The seatless helm above is from an unidentified vessel of the Vietnamese Navy.  Clearly it’s not a MetalShark.

Below, it’s the helm seats of  MF Hornelen.  

Note the flag on the left shoulder of the jacket.

And another from Zee Bart, FV Alpha.

 

I have many more helm seat photos from Zee Bart, but I’d love to have others to dilute Bart’s.

All the first photos here by Will Van Dorp; the others, thanks to Bart.

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