Bowsprite: A New York Harbor Sketchbook

veterans day & tea towel for the engine room

Print your own fabrics! re-upholster your bunk, make cool pillows, and frame your porthole with your own designs!  Spoonflower, is a site based in Durham, North Carolina that prints your designs at their ‘mill’. Read more about them here.

In honor of Veterans Day (today: 11.11.11) they just held their military fabrics contest which I missed, but inspired me to make a tribute fabric anyway. (I never knew the symbolism of poppies until this contest.)

The Ships Ahoy Tea Towel calendar is now available! The fabric measures 21″ long by 18″ wide, but the edges are raw and will need to be finished:

All ships are denizens or frequent visitors of NYHarbor, and run on their own power. I love our historic vessels, but will save those for the Dead Ships Dinner Napkins series.

Here are past Bowsprite fabrics. I am going to do one with egrets and booms, a la Tugster! Have an idea for a fabric? drop a line!

tallships toile, frazil pizza print

Hello, Toile-Lovers! go to Spoonflower to vote for this week’s Fabric of the Week. I think the contest ends thursday. Spoonflower is a site where you can design your own fabric, and buy it: no minimum order! the marvels of the modern age!! I like that you can vote for as many designs as you like.

the Tallships Toile features the Bounty, Lettie, Picton Castle, Pioneer and the Wavertree!!! click on it at the Spoonflower site if you like it; if you do: thank you!

Coming soon: the VOSS print! Be the first in your waterfront condominium to upholster your sofa in the latest and greatest in oil spill recovery!! the VOSS print features heros as the USCG Rankin, the Bainbridge and your friendly neighborhood Medium Response Unit!!! (VOSS – Vessel of Opportunity Skimming System, as brought to your dock by the National Strike Force)

Coming soon: the Driftwood print! drape your windows with the Driftwood print, throw a cocktail party, and wow your guests as you walk out in the matching dress or smoking jacket!!!

and this just in! do you recognize this print?

yes! it’s Frazil Pizza! as created by the talented textile artist, ODocker, who reads blogs before lunch. Order your rolls of Frazil Pizza fabrics today! Toss those lines in style! upholster your boat cushions! wallpaper your galley or marine head with this eye-catching print!

myths debunked: not all tallships people like sea shanteys

Posted in tallships by bowsprite on 2009/11/28

A beautiful tallship sailed into a particular harbor and tied up for a few day’s stay (name of vessel and port withheld until plied loose with drink.)

One day, a visitor approached the ship, identifying himself as part of a small singing group, “Could we come onto your ship and sing sea shanteys?”

“Get them away from me,” muttered the captain to his crew. The visitor was politely turned away with some sort of excuse, of a meeting or event, much apologies.

That evening, more shanteyeurs came to see if they could board the ship to sing sea shanteys.

“Sorry, not tonight, but maybe tomorrow.”

That night, the ship cast off and crept out to sea.

Reported by FL, a tallships sailor, so it’s got to be true. Thanx, Frank.

Happy Harbor Week!

NYHarbor was busy this week, and here are some of the highlights where partyers, stately visitors, and working mariners made it work, swimmingly:

12sept09 Saturday, 1411h  – “Requesting slow bell in the Buttermilk Channel for a flotilla of historic Dutch vessels visiting, requesting slow bell in the Buttermilk until 1500.”

dutchboats1

Then, the navy vessels go by:

navyshipsline

WaterTaxi to the Coast Guard Cutter (paraphrased): “Oh, please, please, may I go inbetween the navy ships? i’m just crossing the river.”

Coast Guard Cutter (verbatim): No. Denied. Forbidden. “You can stay where you are or you can go to the end and take the stern of the last vessel, but you may not cut through the parade.” The ships went by slowly, and the taxi was like a little boy who has to go the bathroom very, very badly, but could not.

4164352357704707803c828861

The ships went up as north as the 79th boat basin, turned and went south. Here, one passes Pier 40, home to the Steamship Lilac and Fireboat John D. McKean:

pier40

Little Flying Dutchmen joined the parade:

flying dutchmen

Cargo ship Ocean Atlas steamed south alongside the Sloop Clearwater, calling out 5 bells to warn sailing vessels ahead:

clearwater.oceanatlasOcean Atlas (120m x 20m; draught 7.7m, destination Houston)

What ship is this?

qui

Then, a call on VHF 13: “A flotilla in the mooring!”

flotillaCG

The working harbor draws comparisons of the regatta to Nature: “Yeah, watch out, I got a lot of fleas here on my right.”

flotillamooring

“Uh, Heyward, I’m going to go south of these mosquitos, see you on the 2.”

flotillastatue

(The views expressed here are not the opinions of the blogger, who rather saves the discourtesy for the cigarette boats.)

flotillabattery2This view is looking south, where the regatta is at the Battery. The hexagonal stupa is the Holocaust Museum, the patina’d copper green topped roof and tower is Pier A, the old fireboat station. The strip of land midground is Governor’s Island. The waters are the deep water range (fore), and Buttermilk Channel (behind).  The background land is Brooklyn. The Verrazano-Narrows Bridge straddles Bay Ridge, Brooklyn to the left and Staten Island to the right.

Sunday: Harbor Day. The morning started calmly with Half Moon and Tromp riding between Penobscot Bay and Thunder Bay. Hawser 65610 was also in service.

halfmoon803CG

Sorensen Miller brought a large number of passengers onto the Warship Tromp.

sorensenmiller

sorensenout2 The USCG Cutter Penobscot Bay began to announce on ch13 that a security zone would be in effect from 1100 until 1600: no traffic allowed on north river during that time, from the Battery to Berth 64 (about 24th street.) The announcement was made at intervals.

catherding2KP: “Kimberly Poling is in the ConHook Range, splitting the 29 and the KV buoy, headed up the north river.”
CGPB: “Kimberly Poling, this is CG Cutter Penobscot Bay, you going all the way through?”
KP: “Oh, yes, sir, I’m going to Albany, to Rensselaer.”
CGPB: “OK, well, please hug the Manhattan side.”
KP: “Very good.”
CGPB: “Thank you, have a good day.”
KP: “You too.”

kimberlypolling

KP (to buddy on radio): “Yeah, I just made it before they closed.” “You’re lucky.”

Another vessel is not as content: a series of insistent 5 blasts were made as boats were right in front of its path (photo is taken when they just cleared away.)

arcadia803

Arcadia, faltering: “I..I can’t believe you just crossed my bow like that…”

arcadia

1003h  “Don, what are you doing, cooking everybody’s pop tarts with that radar?”
“Oh, you like that screen, huh?”

Minerva Zoe, in the ConHook Range, headed out to sea.”

1045h “Jervis Bay (cargo) is at the KV buoy, inbound for Port Elizabeth.”
1109h Half Moon and Onrust announce they are about to fire guns. I never did hear them.
McKean: “Yeah, you can pump 25.”

Marjorie McAllister uncomplainingly steers with a partially loaded barge and heads south.

marjorieCircus

marjoriemcallister2

Unknown: “Can you go 1 whistle? we’re going to raise an RHA on the starboard side.” (–what is an RHA?)
Containership Bauci: “We’re coming on the 28 here, see you on the one.”

statenferryWhich tallship is motoring without sails set? yes, Clipper City.

1100h - Penobscot Bay declares on ch13 the security zone is in effect, “closing North River from the Battery across to Morris Canal, Jersey City. The south marker is this unit, Penobscot Bay. The north marker is Thunder Bay, a straight line across berth 64.”

Despite the warnings all morning, boats call out.

Penobscot Bay, we need to refuel at Morris Canal…”

“…requesting to transit north to North Cove…”

Penobscot Bay, we need to get across the river to the Battery…”

“…do you have a radio on there?” (If this does not elicit a response, try to talk louder.)

Penobscot Bay responds to almost all of them, and repeats: “… you will have to wait until the end of the race, at 1600.” “If you do not have a flag, you may not enter the security zone…” “Negative, you may not enter the security zone…”

sundry tugmen: “How about some working channels here?” “Wouldn’t it be nice to have a race channel on the working harbor?”northriver

The DEP’s North River, going on North River after the security zone is in effect.

to be continued…

Three Ships in Town for the 4th of July

Posted in tallships by bowsprite on 2009/07/03

Happy Fourth of July!!!

bel espoir+bountyBeautiful three masted ships, the Bounty and Bel Espoir II are now at Pier 66 on North River. If you go to 26th street, and walk west towards the Hudson River and sit at the outdoor pier cafe for lunch right next to these lovely ships, it might look like this.

Above the escutcheon of the Bounty are golden carvings of the sun, flanked on either side by cornucopias (horns of plenty), with fruits and flowers spilling off to port and starboard.

Bel Espoir, a ship of ‘good hope’ or ‘beautiful hope’ and good vibes.

sagre

The Portuguese Navy Sail Training Ship Sagres is docked at Passenger Ship Terminal, pier 84, on 44th street, directly across from the Intrepid.

Also seen: the Dutch ketch Saeftinge and the A. J. Meerwald.

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