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40330design ideas

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  • Zack Tiger
    Nov 2, 2004
      I have been building rather a large number of boats
      recently in my "cerebral boatyard". Most of these are
      designed and built only "cerebrally", but some get put
      down on paper and get fleshed out and detailed.
      While i was at work yesterday, I saw something that
      inspired yet another deswign. I work at a nuclear
      power plant, and we had a contractor in to harvest
      weeds from the intake channel (which supplies large
      volumes of cooling water to the condensers).
      This rig was about 25' long, and was essentially a
      steel scow with a chute at the front to scoop and cut
      weeds, and a conveyor belt to move them to a storage
      bin in the stern. Pretty tame stuff....except for one
      As I watched this rig work, I noticed that it was a
      diesel powered side-wheeler! It has a Detroit Deisel
      four cylinder engine (either a 4-53 or 4-71) coupled
      via a gearbox (Allison automatic) to a modified rear
      axle. This whole rig could be lifted from an old
      school bus intact! My mind pictured a shantyboat form,
      like Shanteuse or Harmonica, with open fretted side
      paddle wheel boxes, her hull all in white with red or
      dark green trim, a wire-stayed black smokestack made
      from stovepipe, with a crown cap and "foghorn"
      whistle. A small cabin aft, and canvas surrey top
      forward,similar to Paul Esterle's "Winton M. Green",
      draped in "icicle' Christmas lights (powered by the
      battery mounted inverter), she would be a dream slowly
      chugging up the lake at sunset, while the crew and
      passengers sat on lawn chairs, watching the steaks
      cook on the small hibachi, glasses of cold something
      in hand (can you TASTE it Bruce?)
      Perhaps instead of the school bus power unit, I could
      revamp the old VW rabbit deisel from the houseboat
      days..hmmmmm, it has a transverse mount with two
      halfshafts.......differential braking could provide
      steering.....oh god, here we go! I can see the wife
      shivering already! Yet another crazy project!

      Offered for your comments and ideas...........

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