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Ideas get thrown into the “line locker” aka “catch-all space in my brain” when I read and sort.  We all read different items in varying ways:  skim the news, scan for a reference number, word by word for meticulous directions . . . .  A friend describes himself as bouncing through life repeatedly attracted by the next shiny thing . . . yet he gets a lot of work done.  I’m drawn in by shiny things too, and some of those i share here, like seeing an ice cream boat for sale.  Click on the image below to see what you’d get for almost $220k.  I think the price is a bit steep.  Excuse the verizon ad.

Here’s a shiny thing I noticed the other day as I was studying a map of the north side of Staten Island.  See it . . . ?

Here’s a closer look . . .  to the right of Reinauer Transportation.  In fact, when last I drove by here on Richmond Terrace, I noticed a new business sign next to the Reinauer gate . . .   WindServe Marine, the folks who have taken delivery of this crew transfer vessel.  Should I expect one of these days soon we’ll see Windserve Odyssey transiting the KVK?  Has it already been in this port and I missed it?

How about water taxis in another country?  I’m surprised by the informality of these transits. Click on the image for the video . . ..

Having seen this and more, I wondered about the word for skipper or captain in Japanese language.  And the answer is su kippa and kya pu ten.  Other loan words are bijinesu (business), konbini (convenience store), and more.

HT, frequent commenter on the blog,  sent along this good news about a “maritime careers” grant won by Noble Maritime Collection

Here are three great youtube channels I sometimes watch: 1) for sixth boro and environs, Tim B at Sea, excellent explainer.  2) for the Upper Mississippi, marktwained, showing a very different barge handling.  And 3) Schooner Issuma and Richard Hudson, who has put more sea miles on his sailing vessels than Henry Hudson ever did.


And finally, the other day I broke down and created an Instagram account.  I learned in doing that that tugster is a fairly widely used account name.  WTF!@#$!  I made the name up 15 years ago, thinking it unique, a variation on what makes the words “teamster, gangster, jokester, pollster . . . .”  Here’s only one of the pages of folks using tugster in their Instagram account.  Coincidence or not?  I’m baffled.  For what it’s worth, I’m not that impressed by Instagram so far.

We can leave it here.  By the way, my Instagram account name is vandorpwill.  Someone had even beat me to my name!!


If my post-entitling were consistent, this would be the twelfth post with pics from Mike.  Of course, if it were differently consistent, this would be Lois M 4.   Yes, 4 because of this post which would be Thanks to Jake . . . and a number. OK, I’ll stop with all the meta-commentary.

Nevertheless, Lois M is still in town, hibernating  . . .  you might say,  waiting not so much for spring as for completion of the work on her barge.

To highlight her size . . .  she ‘s 108′ x 35′ x 18’ and propelled by 4800 hp.

To quote the GLtugs site, she’s a “z-drive tug was built in 1991 by Matsuura Tekko Zosen of Higashino, Japan as the Lambert for Cleveland Cliffs-Robe River Iron in Australia.”

Note the WTC 1 beyond the stern deck and

the Empire State Building and Williamsburg Bridge beyond her here.

Many thanks, Mike.



An unusual profile sailed into the Narrows recently, and what I read says she’s powered by Niigata engines.  Anyone know much about these engines?  The company also builds railroad equipment.

I assumed she’d be in under cover of darkness, but towing a 400′ x 100′ deck barge, she made slow time along the south side of Long Island.

I’m not sure I understand the impact of cold on my camera, but I got these photos from more than half a mile off.

After towing barge Tobias in on the wire, she rounded up in Stapleton and made up alongside.  Eventually, she got assistance and brought the barge into the Brooklyn Navy Yard.


For more info on Lois M, check here out here and here.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.



Thanks to Amy Bucciferro for the first two fotos here taken in San Francisco in early May.  From left to right here, Japanese training barque Kaiwo Maru II, unidentified AmNav tugs, and SFFD fireboat Guardian.  The AmNav tugs are either  Independence (farther) and Patricia Ann (nearer).

Below is 1914 tug Eppleton Hall, seaworthy enough in 1970 to travel from the North Sea to San Francisco via the Panama Canal.  For a foto of “Eppie” under way, click here.   (I love the “save the Eppie” art, for the aesthetic of the late 1960s.  Anyone know of a larger, more detailed version?)

Crowley Valor is bow escort for Vancouver Express into Seattle.

Foss Pacific Star awaits the signal to ease Cosco Antwerp off the pier, bound for sea.

Andrew Foss glides northbound toward bulker Tian Yu Feng.

Log bronc Skillful finds haven on Lake Union near Center for Wooden Boats’ Northwest Seaport.

Truckable tug Lynx stands by in Newcastle harbor.

In Bremerton and behind a fence, it’s YTB 828 Catahecassa.  Read the sign on the fence?  Catahecassa was a Shawanee chief.

Also behind the fence is YTB 779 Manhattan.  When I thought to try to get a closer, unobstructed foto, I

saw another sign, clearly, that reiterated what I couldn’t quite read on that other sign.

First two fotos by Amy Bucciferro;  all others by Will Van Dorp.

Not random but unrelated:  at PortSide NewYork in Atlantic Basin on July 22 (830 pm), the movie Random Lunacy will be shown, featuring a transAtlantic crossing by Poppa Neutrino aboard Son of Town Hall.  Read about Bonnie’s encounter on Jamaica Bay this weekend with a vessel made with parts of Son of Town Hall.

Kojima, PL 21, a 377′ loa Japan Coast Guard vessel is training where?

New York?  Actually, she’s cruising around the world for this training.  Click here.  Charles D. McAllister assists with departure.

She heads for sea after a week or so in the sixth boro.

Kure, Hiroshima Prefecture, is home to the Japan Coast Guard Academy.

A loud horn blast and down the Buttermilk Channel they went.

Click here for general info about the Japan Coast Guard, founded in 1948.  It makes me wonder about things like . . . who ran the lighthouses there before 1948?  Were there surfmen?  How long have women served in the JCG and what percentage of personnel do they make up?  What would happen if PL 21 and Steve Irwin cross paths in the Mediterranean?    Click here for JCG v. Chinese survey vessels face-off.

All fotos yesterday by Will Van Dorp.

More on the iPatch later.  For now, can you identify this foto from the bridge of a self-described flagship?  Clues lurk.  I had a tour aboard this morning from G, a biology teacher (among other things) from Brazil.  Notice the glass container below the gauge mounted on the window pillar.

The flag is Tibet, and the globe . . . a gift from the Dalai Lama.

The hull of this repurposed ex-Scottish Fisheries Protection Vessel (FPV) Westra is painted black.  Dimensions are 196′ x 36′ x 14′, capable of 16.5 kts, layover in the sixth boro until Saturday on a voyage that has seen such stops as Pitcairn Island and the Galapagos.

It’s Steve Irwin, flagship of

Sea Shepherd, what Raffi Khatchadourian‘s November 2007 New Yorker article called “Neptune’s Navy.”

Tours run daily from 10 until 3.  Fundraiser Friday night . . . details here.  Here’s the letter of support from the Dalai Lama.  Izod logo just happens to be at the end of the pier, but –hey–maybe they’re supporters too.

Click here for a report on the loss of a portion of the Sea Shepherd fleet–Ady Gil— on January 7, 2010.  A Sea Shepherd hero is Henry Morgan, privateer, who fought fire with fire, or piracy with piracy.

All fotos, Will Van Dorp.

For an update on Captain Bethune of Ady Gil, now called a political prisoner of the Japanese, click here.

iPatch . . .  just a thought, a name I hereby coin.  This is my vision of a new miracle product by the folks who brought us iMac, iPod, iPhone, and iPad . . .  the iPatch . . . a hightech gadget–a panacea, if you will–that will restore balance between the species, mutual respect among the peoples of the earth, rid the seas of pirates and plastic patches,  . . .  what else . . ..

Disclosure:  Not owning a TV, I’ve never seen an episode of Whale Wars, although I have seen its parody on YouTube.

Uhhh . . . Johnny Depp’s pirate ship?

Full disclosure:  I spent an hour yesterday and an hour today in the area between Piers 66 and 90, i.e., Krevey’s and the Passenger Terminal.  If I didn’t say this, you’d wonder why the light looks different.  So any idea what’s happening in this  start  foto?  That is the Hoboken Terminal tower across the river, and those are tools dangling on line lanyards, a really good idea you know if you’ve ever worked over water.  I can’t count the screwdrivers I lost overboard as I worked on planking of a wooden boat some years back until I “discovered” this solution.


Ok, so it’s head rig.  Bent  (did it strike one?) dolphin striker and figurehead . . . which vessel?


The one and only.  Marlon Brando worked here, and so did  . .  uh . .  some racier pirates.


By early August Bounty will start a European tour.  See the schedule here.


 Here Mary Gellatly  maneuvers a bunker barge away from .  . . .


Peace Boat (ex-Starship Oceanic and Big Red Boat 1).


Not unusual, some vestige of its previous lives remains.  Can you make out the previous port of registry?


Nassau.  Below is one of the megayachts  (Can you think of another name for this vast assemblage of floating stuff?) in the sixth boro.  Earlier this week I missed Le Grand Bleu,  although this foto comes from Jed. There are three “tenders” on her starboard side, but have you EVER seen a sailboat, mast stepped!!, as tender on a yacht?


Yesterday I caught Lady Christine.  Readers/commenters compared one of Bart’s recent finds, a similar yacht, to . . .  a small power tool for personal “hedge” trimming?  Can you imagine what such a yacht looks like in the body shop getting re-painted?  If you can’t imagine, check here.


Given all this transient traffic, it’s always therapeutic then to see the venerable McAllister Responder or . . .


keeping its distance over on the other side, Cheyenne.  Use the upper left search box to find many previous fotos of Responder and Cheyenne on this blog.


All fotos . . .  by Will Van Dorp, except Jed’s, for which I am grateful.

Remember . . . I might not post tomorrow because the  Appalachian Trail … or some such . . . beckons.

A third of a year has passed since I last used this title. So . . . short post, odds and ends.

First, this waterside foto of the Phillip T. Feeney shows the extent of her deterioration. Sad. I’d like to know the stories of her life. The buildings in the background stand along Richmond Terrace.



And you may wonder what’s become of my beloved Alice. The foto below is from her last visit back in December, I think. Now she’s halfway around the world in . . .



Japan. Actually, off southern Japan. Hey maybe adventure, a spring fling, or maybe in quest of exotic aggregates for the Brooklyn market, who knows?

I’m quite in need of spring, spring healing that is. Winter’s left me with a bug.

Photos, WVD.

W. O. Decker (ex-Russel No. 1) built in 1930 in Long Island City has dimensions that suited its function.



Its 48 loa by 15 feet make it bulky relative to this inflatable, foto first published here.



But relative to Curtis Reinauer . . .



and then this unidentified Reinauer tug (Franklin??)  relative to K-Line’s car carrier Century Highway No. 2 . . . . Some history on the K-Line here.



and we could go on . . . to Emma Maersk, Knock Nevis, and Genesis. And Enterprise?

Photos, WVD.

Maersk Taiyo shows how to park 4000 cars simultaneously: slow, lower,



and let out scope. Lower New York Bay serves as parking lot for the beast with global habitat. Btw, “taiyo” means “sun” in Japanese, I believe.



Barge RTC 150 and Meredith C. Reinauer parks on the hook off the Upper West Side of Manhattan,



close-up of the upper pilothouse,



and a little farther south, barge Doubleskin 55 and Patapsco.



All photos, Will Van Dorp.

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