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Bilge Rat
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
can anyone tell me if there was ever a paddler built that had the capabilityof going ahead on one and astern on the other for manouvering? I think not, but my overeducated mate here says there was. anyone help on this one? I got a large tot staked on this one guy's
 

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I'm not a paddler expert, but, technically speaking, the only way would be to operate the port and starbord wheels with two indipendent engines.
Another way could be to insert two reverse gears between a single engine and the two wheels, but this looks quite intricate and scarcely reliable in manoeuvering, expecially in emergency.
So: has ever been built a paddler with two indipendent engines? The answer to our historical experts!
P.
 

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To my knowlege independent drives to each paddle was the norm. As such they were very easy to manouver.
For efficiency the paddle blades "feathered " to maintain a vertical position relative to the water ;that is; they did not lift water on the blades upward portion of the revolution .All the effort being put into forward motion or astern as the case may be.
 

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Believe the Tay paddler-ferries, before the war, and until early 50's (BL Nairn and Sir William High) had a pair of horizontal steam engines, one port one starboard. I used to watch them as a kid from the lounge, which had windows overlooking the machinery.
 

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I remember reading somewhere that most British paddlers did not have independent shafts, but paddle tugs, as a necessity of their business, did.

Bruce C.
 

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neil maclachlan, member.

Hi Guys,
Re the paddler question, I served my apprenticeship with a company famous for building steam engines,by the name of "Rankin & Blackmore Ltd"Eagle Foundry, Greenock Scotland. During my time there we built a number of side paddle and stern wheel engines. The side paddlers were the "Waverley, Maid of the loch, Bristol Queen" None of these ships had paddles independantly driven as the crankshaft drove both paddles,the paddles had a eccentric feathering device that allowed the paddles to feather as they came out of the water. I sailed on many paddle steamers during my younger days on the Clyde and never once saw any steamer of that type different,the only one different from the normal was the "PS Talisman",she had a diesel engine by British Polar Engines Ltd of Glasgow driving an E.E.C. Electric Motor. The Talisman was built by A&J. Inglis of Pointhouse on the Clyde same builder who built "Waverley". My grandfather was a tugboat master with Clyde Shipping Company, he was master of the "Flying Scotsman", she was a paddler and had a beam engine both paddles driven by the one engine. Hope my comments may help clear up the question although I feel there may be an arguement somewhere?
Awra Best--NeilMac.
 

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An interesting subject . Both Valayer and I have the same recollection of the BL Nairn having two horizontal steam engines . It is most unlikley they were connected however I keep an open mind. Some more research is necessary . Back to the old textbooks ! However from what you tell us Neil it seems it was not the norm to have independant paddles .
Cheers Derek
 

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Both survivng British built paddle tugs that I know of, the 'John H. Amos' and the 'Eppleton Hall' each have two engines turning independent shafts.

Bruce C.
 

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Bilge Rat
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Gentlemen, I thank you for the information you have given, looks like i get a free tot!!I also heard the rumor that independant paddles would cause a capsize.
 

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Not so fast Billyboy

I have found a number of vessels which have two engines ; each one independantly driving one (1) paddle .

Bruce Carsons comment supports this .

It seems that from about 1850 twin engines each on a separate paddle was the norm for large vessels .

Wee paddlers would not have enough room for a twin engine arrangement therfore would never be candidates for such a drive system .

The disadvantage of independant drives was nothing to do with stability ; but the extra difficulty steering if the two power plants were not giving equal revs /power to the paddles.

A further Big advantage to these configurations as well as manouverability was that there was no crankshaft going across the vessel which opened up the midship space from engine room to cargo or passengers .

A paddle ship going full ahead Port and Full Ahead Stbd would turn on its own axis . Nothing to do with stability which is a function of the GM . It would spin like a top ! ( albeit a slow top )

Most paddle steamers in the UK and Astralia were shallow draft ; flat bottomed vessels ( suited to shallow water operation ) They would have a high GM and if anything would be a bit " stiff '.

Deep sea vessels would be somewhat different and if a passenger ship; it could be a bit "tender " .

This was a function of the design by the naval architects and would not be a result of independant drives to paddles . A transatlantic voyage would not involve much manouvering .

Keep the pot boiling Billy !
You have a hot! one here .


Regards Derek
 

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Bilge Rat
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks Roger for that info. Looks like the probability of my free (double) Tot is wavering a bitmate!! coming from Scotish stock this could have a serious effect on "ma weee Sporran" LOL
 

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Bilge Rat
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ah! just a wee minute now. think I can recall as a child hearing that either the "bristol or Cardif Queen" had this capability but were afraid to use iti n fear of stability probs, hence my late father used to swing them round with a TID tug when they were in newhaven for a summer season. gOLLY GOSH , I MUST BE HAVING ONE OF "THOSE" MOMENTS WE CAN SPEAK ABOUT HERE ... lol
 

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I had forgotten the most obvious--the "Mississippi" type steamboat on the Western rivers of North America.
The sidewheelers, which outnumberd the sternwheelers by far, traditionally had two single cylinder simple horizontal engines, one to port and the other to starboard independently working the wheels
The sternwheelers often had port and starboard engines to work the single wheel.

Bruce C.
 

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A wee bit late with this but Lamey Towing Company on the Mersey had a
paddle tug still operating in the late 1940s... I used to watch her in action in
and out of Alfred Locks in Birkenhead, towing Trampships... in tandem with a conventional steam tug also of Lamey... wish I had taken photos, she could turn
on sixpence! Snowy.
 

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I believe there were one or two early paddle tugs on the Thames that manoeuvred by virtue of moving a weighted bogie athwartships dipping or lifting the paddles. I was told that they had had a special name..probably unprintable!
 

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Bilge Rat
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Paedrig!! "probably unprintable" you say! ... heh heh heh that should keep a few guessing over the holiday mate ... LOL
 

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Out of interest I just checked out the book "A history of Marine Engineering" but John Guthrie and could find no mention of paddlers with separate engines attached to each paddle. The book seems pretty comprehensive on matters related to engines but obviously he could have just decided not to include such vessels.

Brian
 

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Thanks Santos !
I rest my case !
I was particularily happy to see the comment re the B.L Nairn ( Dundee to Newport ) which both Valayer and I commented on and observed as kids . The Grey Cells are still in good nick it would appear.

Sorry about the Dram Billy ! No mateer I will stand my hand should we meet up some day .
Derek
 
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