Bowsprite: A New York Harbor Sketchbook

hawser, line and wire: happy 50th!

Posted in Uncategorized by bowsprite on 2013/02/20

Some tugs are named after rivers. Some after seas, some after trees. Some are named after American Indian tribes.

harbortug

But the CG has a class of tugs that wins the award for best names: the 65-foot Small Harbor Tug (WYTL).
Named after things normal people call “rope”, and things found on a boat that interact with the “rope,” or, in one case, what normal people call “droop” of a rope, to those who love tugs, these names are little, one-word love poems, odes to the small harbor working tug.

The WYTLs were built between 1962 and 1967, and were employed only on the east coast, from Maine to Virginia. Originally a class of 15 tugs built by different shipyards, 11 are still in service:

  • BOLLARD (WYTL 65614)  New Haven, CT
  • BRIDLE (WYTL 65607)  Southwest Harbor, ME
  • CAPSTAN (WYTL 65601)  Philadelphia, PA
  • CHOCK (WYTL 65602)  Portsmouth VA
  • CLEAT (WYTL 65615)  Philadelphia, PA
  • HAWSER (WYTL 65610)  Bayonne, NJ
  • LINE (WYTL 65611)  Bayonne, NJ
  • PENDANT (WYTL 65608)  Boston, MA
  • SHACKLE (WYTL 65609)  South Portland, ME
  • TACKLE (WYTL 65604)  Rockland, ME
  • WIRE (WYTL 65612)  Saugerties, NY

BITT  (WYTL 65613)  was decommissioned on 4 October 1982, now  R/V Clifford A. Barnes
SWIVEL  (WYTL 65603) , still SWIVEL at Governor’s Island
TOWLINE  (WYTL 65605) perhaps for sale, and
CATENARY  (WYTL 65606), now Growler

 

And YOU are invited to the 50th birthday celebration of  Hawser (17 Jan 1963), Line (21 Feb 1963), and Wire (19 Mar 1963):

“1 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013: the three tugs will meet at the Walkway over the Hudson and steam north to Saugerties. A Coast Guard spokesperson will be available at the walkway and there will be a photo opportunity there to capture the tugs together on the Hudson River.” USCG Media Advisor

icebreakingtugs
According to Hudsonian’s  & Tugster’s photos, all three have expanded the cabins aft to enclose the stack. So the drawing above is incorrect. Do not use for navigation.
Like one to take home? look here.

Length: 65 ft
Beam: 16 ft
Displacement: 72 tons
Power Plant: Upgrading to
500 HP

The Naval Institute Guide To The Ships And Aircraft Of the U.S. Fleet, Norman Polmar

lightship ambrose

Posted in Uncategorized by bowsprite on 2012/07/01

Lightship Ambrose LV 87 / WAL 512
Built: 1907 by New York Shipbuilding Co., Camden, NJ
Length: 136ft. (41.5m)
Beam: 29ft. (8.8m)
Draft: 13ft. (3.9m)
Original Illumination Apparatus: three oil lens lanterns
Propulsion: Steam

This lightship was stationed in the Ambrose Channel since 1906, guiding vessel traffic through the main shipping channel just below the Verazzano Narrows bridge, into New York and New Jersey Harbor until 1967. She was given to South Street Seaport Museum by the U.S. Coast Guard in 1968. A light tower replaced it, was hit by ships a few times too many, and, now, the channel is marked by lighted buoys.

Now at the new! improved! South Street Seaport Museum under the fertile wing—nurturing wing?— of the City of the Museum of New York  this lightship was painted in March, and is now being restored and is open for visiting at Pier 16.

The wings of the seaport museum are alive: a new exhibit is up, nautical pieces from another museum I love, the American Folk Art Museum.

And true to the harbor’s spirit, the active gem of the museum, Pioneer, is sailing. Go onboard to sail in the harbor or go and volunteer and learn how to handle lines and many other things that may always serve you well…!

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