Small Boats

Home Rivers & Terms Work Class Barges Shipyard Theory Small Boats Ugliest Boats Afloat Line & Long-Haul Knowledge Box Engine Room River Recipes Workboat Links

Utility, Tender & Trip-boats

    The Utility Towboat - is the smallest class of vessel, ranging from 18' to just over 50' lengths and designed for small specialized jobs.  Note - Size of vessel, Doesn't indicate Horsepower = in any class, whether Blue or Brown water Types of workboat.   Built as Single & Twin- Screw version, where utility boats can even be a small Jon- boat with an outboard motors, equipped with - Push Knee's to qualify as a Utility Class = Towboat.   Many of these small boats are used as Fleet Tenders, or Crew Boats and for Vessel & Barge Inspections, or as Dredge Tenders.   And as Grocery Boats, meaning just what it sounds like, a vessel used to deliver groceries to larger vessels.    Doing this, while the larger vessel is in route, where it supplies - Crew Changes, Groceries & Parts to the larger boat, as its passing the  operational area of the smaller vessel.  Some companies also have mechanic's - on duty, whom use these small boats to stand by, in order to do quick repairs, or assist major repairs on boats.    NOTE .... Anything under 28' in overall lengths, does not require the vessel - pilot, to be licensed to operate it!

________________________________________________________________

 

Tap photo to enlarge

TRUCKABLE.JPG (118165 bytes) TRUCKABLE_1.JPG (249676 bytes) TRUCKABLE_2.JPG (281957 bytes)   Truck-able Towboats ( Utility Class ), one of the oddest looking of all small designs.    Because its designed to be taken apart and re-assembled - with a small crane, light enough to be truck & trailer transported to job sites, thus its Truck able - term name meaning.    Usually used for pushing a small barges, called FLOATS.   Note the small size of the helm on the boat, in the above photos.    Looking like a tiny closet with windows, barely with enough room for the pilot.    So Small - You feel like stepping Outside- Just to change your mind!    And this vessel is just - 26' feet long and a little over 14' wide and has twin engines.   Its draft would be a maximum of about 5' and carry about a 4' waterline draft and work easily in small creeks.`    Its builder located in Florida, offer hulls - like this, up to 60' in overall lengths.  ( Photo by Jan F. A. Even )

________________________________________________________________

 

Tender's Or Tender Boats

Also Called - HARBOR BOATS

    Ranging from 28' to over 60' in overall lengths.  Horse power can be a few hundred to over 1,000 horse, built as Single, Twin & Triple Screw versions.  The term- Tender, means the vessel works locally around Harbors and Barge fleets, or assists another vessel, called its Mother.  For example, this could be a Dredge having several Tenders in its own fleet for helping it.  You may also hear them called - Helper Boats, since tenders work around "Locks & Dams" to assist large tows to safely enter and exit locks.   Widely used in many duties, these boats are not  equipped with Crews Quarters or Galley's.   This is why the tender is commonly called a "Dinner or Lunch Bucket" boat, meaning their crews work shifts, bringing their own meals in Lunch buckets, thus its term meaning.   Note - boats that are equipped with crew accommodations, can also be used as Tenders too!

Tap photo to enlarge

Johnjd.jpg (132366 bytes)   The M/V " John J. D."   at South point Ohio, is a twin screw with 1,000 horsepower.   Note the boat has a - Stilt Mounted Helm ..... this boat is also a "Cajun Built" design and  sometimes called a Cajun - Tender.   Tender - is a term that means it has - No Crews Quarters or Galley and the vessel is used locally around harbors.    In this case, the John J. D. operates out of South Point Ohio across from Ashland KY. and the Big Sandy River.   Worked in shifts, her crew - carry their own meals aboard, thus being the reason these boats are often called "Dinner Buckets or Lunch Bucket - Boats"!  ( Photo by Joe E. Brown )

Tap photo to enlarge

EWTHOMPSON.JPG (215423 bytes)    The M/V "E. W. Thompson"  has a "Skyscraper Helm" design, she is also called a  "Dinner Bucket" or Tender class vessel.   Having no - crew quarters or galley, used locally as a fleet boat.    Operating out of South point Ohio, across from Catlettsburg Ky., you will note the "Fleet Deck" attached to her tow knee's.   This is a typical addition to small boats.   You may also have noticed - her exhaust stacks, which go straight out, over the stern on the lower structures.  This isn't all that unusual for these boats, which have limited space to put things.   The "Fleet Deck" is built with steel - "Grated Decking", so the pilot can see down through-it to the main deck, or so called "Head Deck" below. ( Photo by Joe E. Brown )

________________________________________________________________

 

Trip-boats

    The smallest, but Still fully equipped vessels, meaning they have Crew & Galley - Quarters for operations away from their home ports, for long periods.     A multi purpose vessel, still small enough to be worked - locally, yet big enough to make short- Trips with small tows.    Thus its terms meaning = Trip Boat, ranging from 45' to about 110' hull lengths.    Built as Single, Twin and sometimes Triple Screw versions, rated between 450 horse, to well over 1800+ horsepower = in larger vessels.    When used locally like a Tender or Harbor Boat, its usually crewed by only a couple of deck hands and the Pilot for local operations.

Tap photo to enlarge

Sir-ene.jpg (178244 bytes)    The M/V Sir-Ene - a Twin screw of 800 horse, awaiting work at its dock.  Note its rather tall structures for such a small - trip-boat.  This vessel measures  54' x 24' x 7' drafts, being very stable by design, owned by Canton Marine Towing Company.  All their boats have names which begin with "SIR", a most unique way of naming vessels - well known as a trusted company on the upper Miss River!   ( Photo by Wm. Zumwalt )

Tap photo to enlarge

Pollyjo.jpg (36368 bytes)    The M/V Polly- Jo   A twin screw - Hybrid or "Cajun- Built" Trip-boat of  750 horsepower.  Note its Bulwarks- solid railings around part of its - main deck, its been partly removed.    Used on the Upper Mississippi at Clarksville Mo. as a lock - Helper Boat.  Not really needing its Bulwarks, her owners removed part of them, when rebuilding this boat, from a small Tugboat, into a Towboat!     It does have a typical V- shaped bow, like a tug, under its extended "Head Deck" on the Bow.    but the hull turns into a flat bottomed design further back, in an extensive rebuilding.   "NOTE - A towboat can operate over 50 years in service, never staying the same, constantly upgraded to meet Coast guard regulations or any  owner requirements.  ( Photo by Wm. Zumwalt )

Tap photo to enlarge

Illlini.jpg (174726 bytes)    The "M/V - ILLINI", at Clarksville Mo.  A twin screw 1800 horse - Trip class of towboat.    Hull Size, means little in vessel horsepower, which this boat proves, rated lower than boats - half its size.    Note the helm is elevated - slightly, and there are "Five Ways" to mount Helms on Towboats....More on this - on the HELM PAGE - Above.  ( Photo by Wm. Zumwalt )

________________________________________________________________

 

Last Updated On 01/22/10 . With Fueled By ktisLopt.gif (9333 bytes)

Email Old River Bill