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  #1  
Old 01-25-2005, 08:20 PM
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fredrosse fredrosse is offline
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Steam Paddlewheel Boat

I am looking for good technical design data for a small sidewheeler paddle boat.

Technical details:
Boat 16ft x 5ft x 8 inch draft, 1400 pounds, flat bottom hull, similar to older style large wooden rowboats. My hull software indicates 1 hp giving 4.5 knots, but the software is based on conventional propeller drive.

I am tentatively planning paddlewheels with 8 or 9 floats, 28 inch ID x 38 inch OD, running at about 90 RPM. I would not use a feathering wheel, too complicated and too vulnerable to damage. I need to get an idea of expected slip, and float width for reasonable propulsion efficiency.

Thanks in advance for any technical references or websites which could provide engineering guidance.

Fred Rosse
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  #2  
Old 01-25-2005, 10:58 PM
Richard Petersen
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You should have posted this question 100 years ago.
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:11 PM
Richard Petersen
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Have any idea how much power and rudder area you will need on a breezy day? Electric power or a very muffled underwater exhaust? You may want seperate power to each wheel for docking control. A high wind restance boat of 16' is going to need + 20 hp with low eff. wheels in a breeze. Look at Party Boat requirements and size to them, then double the hp. Real wheels? You need lots of luck.
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:21 PM
Richard Petersen
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IF you are going to do it , no mater what. Build the boat for seperate wheel power. THEN get it towed on a calm day, on a breezy day. Use boats who have their engines almost at max. power to do each. Now you know whats needed. use at least a 100' rope. good luck. You realize docking is almost impossible as we know it in a boat with prop and rudder?
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  #5  
Old 01-26-2005, 09:16 AM
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fredrosse fredrosse is offline
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Paddlewheels

There are several similar steamboats in my area, larger than I plan, that operate successfully with 1 hp or less (propeller driven). 20 hp is out of the question.

I have considered separate drive for each wheel, but the great majority of real side-wheelers did not have this feature, therefore I plan on one shaft driving both wheels. The boat is only 16 ft long, I can row it if necessary for maneuvering.
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  #6  
Old 01-28-2005, 12:33 AM
artemis artemis is offline
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Check out Reliable Steam Engine Co. http://www.reliablesteam.com . They have plans for Rebel, which is 20'4" LOA, 17' 1" LWL by 5' beam. Although somewhat longer than you're interested in, it might be worthwhile to get the plans (they're only $ 50 on CD and they accept credit cards online). The plans also contain detail drawings on fabricating the paddles. They sell the plans and castings for a "walking beam" engine to power Rebel as well as the appropriate boiler. The walking beam engine develops 4HP.

Ron Fossum
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  #7  
Old 02-11-2005, 10:28 PM
Ssor Ssor is offline
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try this link. I have wanted a steam boat ever since I watched "The African Queen".
http://www.pcez.com/~artemis/NWSSboats-sz.htm

They are the northwest steam society
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  #8  
Old 02-11-2005, 11:34 PM
artemis artemis is offline
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You might want to join the North American Steam Boat Association http://www.northamericansba.org - they pretty much cover the east coast. Their bimonthly newsletter has some good articles and also classifieds (boats and engines for sale as well as ads from steamboating vendors).
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  #9  
Old 02-12-2005, 06:15 AM
FAST FRED FAST FRED is offline
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Location: Conn in summers , Ortona FL in winter , with big dock & room for O'nite stop .
For docking a simple 6hp or better shiftable outboard engine mounted on the bow facing sideways will work as inexpensive bow thruster .

FAST FRED
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  #10  
Old 10-17-2011, 09:09 PM
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fredrosse fredrosse is offline
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Steam Sidewheeler Margaret S.

Finally got this sidewheeler together, 19 ft - 3 inches overall. Making 5 MPH on one horsepower with a traditional American Walking Beam Engine, direct connected to the paddlewheel shafts. Shallow draft and paddlewheels allow operation in the shallows and underwater growth areas, the nemesis of the propeller driven steamers. Can be seen on Youtube under "Sidewheel Steamboat"
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Steam Paddlewheel Boat-sw-underway.jpg  
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  #11  
Old 10-17-2011, 09:59 PM
rayman rayman is offline
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Fredrosse, you have done a mighty job there, very impressive performance. Leave all the free advice where it is, you have a lot of power in those wheels, have you tried towing a loaded dinghy yet, I think she will surprise you. That's the first decent size walking beam I have seen, most people go for conventional types. I have long been interested in a diagonal D/A oscillator just to be different, along with a loco type boiler, keep the weight down low. A friend has a 22ft steam canoe, will dig out some pics when I get home. regards Ray
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  #12  
Old 10-17-2011, 10:27 PM
SamSam SamSam is offline
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Very nice! How maneuverable is it? After researching, did you ever find a way separate drive wheels? What do you think for the effeciency/slip of the wheels?
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  #13  
Old 10-18-2011, 11:28 AM
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fredrosse fredrosse is offline
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Sidewheel Steamer

Ray, thanks for the kind comments. Love that slow walking beam engine, and the exhaust note is music to my ears.

I was going to use a Gunboat Boiler (similar to Loco Type, but with a circular furnace, and no hot ashpan in the bilge), but decided on a regular Vertical Firetube Type Boiler which I could get (with ASME Power Boiler Stamping) at a much lower price. A section drawing shows the arrangement with a Gunboat Boiler next to the walking beam engine.
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Steam Paddlewheel Boat-2008-hull-section.jpg  
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  #14  
Old 10-18-2011, 12:07 PM
Submarine Tom Submarine Tom is offline
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Fred,

Well done.

-Tom
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  #15  
Old 10-18-2011, 01:16 PM
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fredrosse fredrosse is offline
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SamSam, Thanks for the compliment also.

As 99% of the original steam sidewheelers had direct connection to both sidewheels, and I wanted to be as traditional as possible, I never considered independent rotation as an option. A late friend (Ray HasBrouck) had a small sidewheeler with a lawn tractor differential between the sidewheels, and he could brake either wheel, so the opposite one would then turn twice as fast. He could turn that sidewheeler on a dime.

Maneuverability without the differential action is good, I have twin stern rudders on the transom. It is not as good as a propeller driven boat, because the wheels are far away from the rudders, but it steers well once some forward (or reverse) motion is established. When making a sharp turn the wheels slow down considerably, sort of like driving a car with a live axel. The following attached video shows this.

The stern rudders can fold up so I can back right up to a beach, and passengers can step off the boat onto solid ground. This is necessary as the paddlewheels and paddleboxes often preclude conventional docking. There is a portable stem rudder, which allows steering when completing this type of maneuver. An added bonus of the stem rudder is that it allows a forward passenger to steer the boat when traveling in the forward direction, without the ropes and pulleys that are usually associated with a forward steering station.
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