T H Watermeyer

Fairfield
13th October 2004, 10:23
Another piece of artwork,too big for the scanner unfortunately.
TH WATERMEYER was built by Lobnitz at Renfrew in 1939 and was one of many Clyde built tugs for the South African Railways.As far as I know she worked all her life at Cape Town except for some War Service.She lasted until 1982 and was scrapped at Cape Town.

Ken Malcolm
13th October 2004, 19:37
Your details of Watermeyer are absolutely correct, she was one of the largest class of steam tugs built for SAR&H in the period 1943-54.

The class were all of around 2 600shp, with a free running speed of 11-13kn, all were originally coal-fired, due to the abundace of good quality local coal.

I shall dig into my books and provide the complete class history, but sadly, not one was preserved! The only two remaining examples are W H Fuller (1934) sunk off PE, and Otto Siedle (1938) sunk off False Bay, I don't think getting to them is half the fun !

Magic tugs, I recall many a day spent on board CF Kayser and T Eriksen in the seventies in Port Elizabeth.

Fairfield
13th October 2004, 22:10
Have a great liking for these tugs and was lucky enough to see FC STURROCK and JR MORE fitting out.

Ken Malcolm
16th October 2004, 12:16
Hello Fairfield,

Must have been great to be at Ferguson's back then. A friend of my father's, Bill Jackson, worked for Ferguson when the Bates and Campbell were built ('50-51), perhaps you know him?

Fairfield
16th October 2004, 20:59
No,afraid not.Just saw them on trips on QM II from Glasgow and from Gourock bound trains!

Ken Malcolm
23rd October 2004, 15:43
Hello Fairfield,

I spent many a weekend on QMll and Waverley back in the 60's!

Fairfield
23rd October 2004, 19:59
Both are still going strong-WAVERLEY sailing still and QM II is a pub/restaurant on the Thames Embankment.

Robin Stobbs
17th October 2005, 05:30
Hi Malcolm,

I also spent many hours on CF Kayser and am making a large (1/32 scale) model of her. I have dozens of B&W pics of most details - do you perhaps have any detail photographs? Regards, Robin Stobbs

Robin Stobbs
21st October 2005, 18:34
35 years ago I made a 1/32 scale radio-controlled working model of Sct. Knud (St. Canute in her Anglophile form!). In all this time all I have had to replace are the odd 6v battery, rebuild the gearbox and replace all her lights with up-to-date LED circuits! This tug has a fascinating history (which I won’t go into here) and, it seems, has become quite a popular radio-controlled scale working model, especially since Graupner turned out a kit which, incidentally, lacks scale in many aspects. I am most anxious to obtain the drawings published in (I think) ‘Ships Monthly’ and about 1966 to 1969. These drawings showed Sct. Knud as she probably was configured when acquired by the Fowey Harbour Commission in the mid-60s. Any readers have this or have any ideas?? Failing that – any readers have authentic general arrangements drawings of her?

Next query: I am busy on a 1/32 scale model of C.F. Kayser, one of the twin screw harbour tugs based in Port Elizabeth (South Africa) and built by Lobnitz in Renfrew. This is a huge model with a displacement of around 42kg! Back in the ‘60s I took a number of photographs of CFK with the idea of using these detail pics to make a super-scale model. Now I realise that I really need many more pics and wonder if any readers have some they would care to share. CFK as I knew her in the 60s differs considerably from the original drawings – more so than her sister ship ‘Eriksen’.

Last query! My next project – simply because I have her drawings ex South African Railways and Harbours – is to be the ‘William Weller’ which I intend making to 1/32 scale as well and as per her configuration when she left Italy. This is not because Weller was anything special (she was soooo underpowered that on one occasion when detailed to go to Mossel Bay in the face of a strong south-wester, she had to turn back to PE having made no headway in some hours ‘flat-out’ steaming!) but simply because she looks attractive and will be a darn sight more portable than CFK! Anyone have pics of her, or her sister ships?

Regards and thanks for a great website, Robin

ROY LORENTZ
29th November 2005, 18:34
I have a 1/48 radio controlled model of the J.R.More the original of which is preserved in our local Maritime Museum.Iwill post pictures shortly.
For what it's worth I also have a complete set of plans (1/48 scale)fo these fine ships if anyone locally is interested.
Cheers,
Roy Lorentz

japottinger
29th November 2005, 20:15
I have a complete set of model plans of above.

SeamusMartin
17th February 2006, 13:50
Hello Robin, I would like to build radio controlled models of F Schermbrucker and Cecil G White. I was wondering where I could get copies of the lines drawings and general arrangements? I don´t live in SA anymore so it is proving to be quite difficult.

andysk
15th June 2006, 12:52
The attached pic of E S Steytler taken in East London on 30th August 1978 may help some of you modelmakers !

Cheers

Andy

the yard
15th July 2006, 22:44
According to my records the TH Watermeyer was built by Pointhouse Yard, Glasgow, of A.&J. Inglis with a Harland and Wolff ship number 1021.

Yard No. 1021
Vessel Type Tug
Built Pointhouse Yard, Glasgow, of A.&J. Inglis
Launch Date Thursday 6 July 1939
Slip Number 2
Handover Date Wednesday 1 November 1939
Owner South African Government
Weight 620 grt
BP Length 145 Feet
OA Length 155 Feet
Breath 33 Feet
No. of Screws Twin
Speed (Approx.) 12 Knots
Propulsion Lobnitz & Company Ltd. Renfrew - Triple Expansion 6 cylinders

Robin Stobbs
24th December 2006, 04:26
Hello Robin, I would like to build radio controlled models of F Schermbrucker and Cecil G White. I was wondering where I could get copies of the lines drawings and general arrangements? I don´t live in SA anymore so it is proving to be quite difficult.

I obtained my drawings of C.F. Kayser and William Weller from the SAR&H headquarters back in the mid-60s. I'll see if I can track down where similar drawings can be obtained from Portnet though, as I'm sure you understand, "Fings aint wot they used to be!"

SeamusMartin
29th December 2006, 02:32
That would be fantastic, Robin any help with this is greatly appreciated.

I have made a small website with my pictures of the S A steam tugs if you are interested it is at:
http://www.geocities.com/seamusmartin9/

Ballito
27th August 2007, 16:24
Hi Roy,Ballito here,
I understand you have drawings of the JR More,would be interested to see them Thanks

ROY LORENTZ
10th September 2007, 19:02
Have sent a direct email in this regard.You a welcome to view the plans and then decide if they are suitable for your purpose.
Regards,
Roy.

3rdEng
5th May 2014, 13:44
Hi,
To anyone interested in building these steam tugs, I have almost all the builders' drawings of each one of them. And don't believe all the details you read about them, especially in David Reynolds's book: he can't tell length overall from length between perpendiculars. Even Lloyds always quotes them at 6 cylinder triple expansion when what they really mean is twin 3 cylinder triple expansion engines.
All of them, except the White, and the big ones - McEwen & Hoy - had exactly the same engines, a pair, 17", 29" & 48" by 30" stroke. The horsepowers from the trial diagrams are: LW 2377 iHp, SDH 2318 iHp, TSMcE 3300 iHp, SWH 3577 iHp, CFK 3193 iHp, TE 3285 iHp, FS 3393 iHp, JXM 3250 iHp, OS 3259 iHp, ESS 3220 iHp, THW 3251 iHp, JDW 2960 iHp, FTB 3066 iHp, AMC 3246 iHp, RBW 2796 iHp, DH 3096 iHp, FCS 3269 iHp & JRM 3110 iHp.
Hope this is of help.
3rdEng

3rdEng
17th August 2014, 20:19
I obtained my drawings of C.F. Kayser and William Weller from the SAR&H headquarters back in the mid-60s. I'll see if I can track down where similar drawings can be obtained from Portnet though, as I'm sure you understand, "Fings aint wot they used to be!"

Hi. The Ludwig Wiener, J. W. Sauer & Sir David Hunter can be obtained from Glasgow University Archives. I have all the rest of the big tugs from SAR&H drawings and can make copies. The only ones I don't have decent drawings of are the W. H. Fuller and John Dock, but even there I can scratch something together and you can extrapolate from the C. F. Kayser and Eriksen. I also have an accurate list of trial results. I can make copies at the local drawing office (some won't come out very well, especially the T. S. McEwen and the Kayser and Eriksen. All the oil burners are there as well, although those are now available from Glasgow Uni as well.

woodend
18th August 2014, 07:34
They were a great class of tug and great fun to drive. Spent many a happy shift on the THW, CFK, TE,ESS and the OS. A good team of stokers and they were great to handle. Let the steam drop and they soon became sluggish and difficult. One of the funniest sights I remember was on a very busy but beautiful day in Cape Town when Master of the DANIE HUGO, we were hurrying from the Old Dock to the New Dock to assist as cant line tug to a VLCC sailing from the Landing Wall. There was this VLCC with a diminutive THW under the bow and Pilot Dammerall saying over the radio: 'Come on WATERMYER PUSH!' He had backed her away from the berth and now had to turn through 180*. Needless to say up went our cant line and between us made short work of it. Memories of ships and people........!

rickles23
18th August 2014, 07:54
Hi Fairfield,

Could you scan it in two sections?

If you do not have the photo program I will do it for you.

Regards

3rdEng
18th August 2014, 14:09
They were a great class of tug and great fun to drive. Spent many a happy shift on the THW, CFK, TE,ESS and the OS. A good team of stokers and they were great to handle. Let the steam drop and they soon became sluggish and difficult. One of the funniest sights I remember was on a very busy but beautiful day in Cape Town when Master of the DANIE HUGO, we were hurrying from the Old Dock to the New Dock to assist as cant line tug to a VLCC sailing from the Landing Wall. There was this VLCC with a diminutive THW under the bow and Pilot Dammerall saying over the radio: 'Come on WATERMYER PUSH!' He had backed her away from the berth and now had to turn through 180*. Needless to say up went our cant line and between us made short work of it. Memories of ships and people........!

Thanks, John. Tell me, did you find any differences between the sisters (apart from us down below?) I have heard some say they preferred the JXM to the THW but I knew a THW man who would have nothing good said about the JXM! Also the CFK and the TE were slightly lighter. Did that make a difference that you noticed?
Scott

woodend
18th August 2014, 14:36
Hi Scott, I can't remember any marked differences in handling between the various sisters. They all handled better when full of bunkers and with all the water tanks 'pressed up'.

Dickyboy
18th August 2014, 14:40
Hi! I know very little about tugs, but always liked the look of the SAR ones. Good and solid looking as it were. I never saw tugs like them elsewhere. Were they built specifically for SAR to their specification's? Perhaps when I saw them (In the 60s) they were old but well kept? They seemed huge compared with other tugs that handled ships in other parts of the world. They were almost ship sized themselves, it seemed to me.

3rdEng
21st August 2014, 07:13
Hi Scott, I can't remember any marked differences in handling between the various sisters. They all handled better when full of bunkers and with all the water tanks 'pressed up'.

Hi John, thanks. That makes a lot of sense. As a kid in PE I remember they always seemed to be as down to their marks as they could be. Cape Town seemed the same. A great help in all the wind? Durban seemed and East London seemed to keep the bows a little out of the water. For manoeuvrability perhaps in the currents of the Buffalo/Durban Bay's rogue currents? As the Merriman's Chief in Durban - Carlos Castro - pointed out, people forgot that all the tugs from the John Dock onward had exactly the same size engines (except the J. D. White). And so the THW, CFK, TE and OT packed the same power and size propellers into hulls 20ft shorter than the oil burners and 450 tons lighter. [All depending on what was happening downstairs of course] On the other side, the Hoy was only 10ft longer than the oil burners but lighter and 400 horsepower more. She also was often trimmed by the stern. So often people from the outside assumed that the oil burners, because they were bigger, were more powerful. From the trials, the THW was 150 iHp more than the DH ... but ... of course, the lads in boiler suits and the lads in the stokehold had to look lively ... Thanks for your help.

3rdEng
21st August 2014, 07:25
Hi! I know very little about tugs, but always liked the look of the SAR ones. Good and solid looking as it were. I never saw tugs like them elsewhere. Were they built specifically for SAR to their specification's? Perhaps when I saw them (In the 60s) they were old but well kept? They seemed huge compared with other tugs that handled ships in other parts of the world. They were almost ship sized themselves, it seemed to me.

A combination of SAR&H and Ferguson Brothers originally. The Nautical Advisor of the time (R. A. Leigh ?) and SME James Cochrane worked with Ferguson Brothers to design the Ludwig Wiener. It was understood from the first that as it took too long for salvage tugs to arrive from Europe if there was a casualty on the SA coast, and that it would cost too much to keep a dedicated salvage tug here in SA waiting for an emergency, that the harbour tugs would be designed in such a way that they could do both jobs. At the same time, Union Castle announced plans for larger mailships, which turned out to the the Arundel and Windsor Castles of 1919 and so big tugs would be needed. James Cochrane joked to his friends that Fergusons took the engines of the largest British harbour tugs of the time, 1200 iHp, (most actually were 750-1000 iHp) drew two on a piece of paper, worked out how big the boilers would need to be to keep those engines running, added an extra two, worked out how much coal would keep a tug like that at sea for ten days ... and then just drew a hull around it! The Wiener had an almost sister (same hull and engines, different superstructure with twin funnels), the Hunter (off which the Royal Navy designed the Roysterer class (Ferguson's built some of them so the drawings would have been at hand). Then a bigger version of the Wiener, (the T. S. McEwen), and an even bigger one, more like the Hunter, the Sir William Hoy. And then the designed settled into the smaller ones of 154ft and 3250 iHp which were the backbone of every SA harbour came in the 1930s. So when you saw them in the 60s, they would have been 30 years old already. Finally (apart from two modern versions of the 1930s class, one to make up for a tug sunk during WWII and one to allow a 1901-built tug to be scrapped in Durban), five larger oil burners were built, same engines as the 1930s class, same hull (modernised) as the Sir William Hoy, which were the culmination of the design. Those would only have been a few years old when you saw them in the 1960s.

woodend
21st August 2014, 11:16
Then of course there was the R.B.WATERSTONE which was the 'odd ball', oil burner hull but coal fired. Most of the tug masters thought she was under powered but fill all her water tanks and she almost submerged until the belting was very near touching the water (probably then 6- 8 inches overloaded), get a good head of steam and I thought she handled almost as well as the oil burners. Her water capacity came in handy after the ANITA MONTE was towed into False Bay. We ran a continuous shuttle service from Simons' Town to her at anchor for about 10 days. 240 tonnes a trip. Getting back into Simons' Town empty of water was exciting to say the least.

Lurch
21st August 2014, 11:40
When I was a cadet with B & C in the mid 70's was acquainted with a master on the tugs - he was a keen railway modeller and I used to carry his models down from the UK.

Spent many happy days in Cape Town on the tugs, greatest memory was the engineers working the twin engines - no telegraphs were answered, the engines were handled entirely by the reversing gear. Not having to answer bells meant that manoeuvering could be instantaneous. At the time the first Voith Schnieder tugs were appearing on the scene and there was great rivalry between the steam tugs and the diesel guys, hence the way of running the engines. They could walk the tugs sideways and do things unimaginable to the early operators.

The coal tugs would sometimes be rotated to Walvis Bay, this was always an advenure as they would coal up and restock at Luderitz Bay en route, often with coal on deck.

One issue they had in the end was with the new generation of container vessels - the high freeboard on container stack would create wind shadow and the coal burners had trouble finding draft. Not so woth the graceful lines of the mail boats.

3rdEng
21st August 2014, 14:26
Then of course there was the R.B.WATERSTONE which was the 'odd ball', oil burner hull but coal fired. Most of the tug masters thought she was under powered but fill all her water tanks and she almost submerged until the belting was very near touching the water (probably then 6- 8 inches overloaded), get a good head of steam and I thought she handled almost as well as the oil burners. Her water capacity came in handy after the ANITA MONTE was towed into False Bay. We ran a continuous shuttle service from Simons' Town to her at anchor for about 10 days. 240 tonnes a trip. Getting back into Simons' Town empty of water was exciting to say the least.

Dear John,
I must admit that the Waterston has always been a huge puzzle to me as an engineer. It was a pity that she was the 'odd-ball', the only sort-of dud, because she was quite good looking in her way. Her engines were exactly the same as the other tugs. As you know, after the massive engines of the Sir William Hoy (and apart from the J. D. White which had Plenty and Sons version of 1500 iHp engines - Charles Hill and Son, Bristol, didn't make their own engines), all the tugs had the same engine specs: 17" (HP), 29" (IP) & 48" (LP) by a 30" stroke. Now you can understand a little variation between two sisters, like the Hugo being 3099 iHp and the F. C. Sturrock being 3269 iHp on trial ... but the Waterston was only 2796 iHp on exactly the same engines as all the rest of them! And it wasn't just the coal burning boilers as the Watermeyer was 3251 iHp and the Schermbrucker was 3393 iHp !!!
I even obtained the full trial diagram from Glasgow University Archives hoping to find an answer, like different valve settings, but no, it was 2796 iHp fully linked out.
All I could see was that the boiler pressure never got above around180 lb/sq.in on the full power run but reached the full 200 on the half power runs. Maybe her boilers didn't have the same capacity as the older craft? We'll never know now as no amount of research has turned up a set of drawings of the 1930s craft's boilers or the Waterston's!
But I knew another master who liked his time on the Waterston once she was kept as deep as possible, Pearson, I think his name was.


Thanks for your info.

Scott