Henry Johnson James
A 50' 3" Harbor Tugboat
By William Atkin
A Hard Working Tug for War Service
Wherever there are wharves and shipping there must also be tug boats; tug boats on salt water where tows are pulled; tow boats on shallow fresh water where tows are pushed. There are, of course, exceptions to the above statement; but generally it is true. Shipping as we know it today would be paralyzed without tug boats and tow boats. Tugs and tow boats are tough little craft made for work. In their design first comes utility followed by staunchness, efficiency, economy in operation, reasonable first cost, and ease in handling. All these features are of equal importance.

The dimensions of Henry Johnson James are as follows: length over all, 50 feet 3 inches; load water line, 45 feet; breadth, 15 feet; and draft, 5 feet 11 inches. The freeboard at the bow to under side the rail cap is 7 feet 7 inches, and the freeboard at the stern to under side rail cap is 4 feet 7 1/2 inches. The displacement to designed water line is 32 tons.

For commercial purposes a small tug like this has many uses; towing everything from sand to munitions, police work along the water side, patrol duty outside harbors and, being of modest draft, able to get into places where her big sisters would run hard aground.

The boat does not have regular living accommodations; there are, however, berths in the forecastle for two, and berth for one in the pilot house. Toilet facilities are provided, water, and room for cooking or heating stove; headroom in the forecastle is over 6 feet. There is a water-tight bulkhead between motor room and forecastle, and large stowage spaces in the bows for gear, supplies, etc. The hold abaft the motor room bulkhead is open.

The deck plan shows main bitts well into the boat, grating for drying tow lines over the rudder posts, wide side decks, husky quarter and bow bitts. Stack carries away exhaust gasses. Small boat, life raft and fire buckets are carried on the motor trunk deck as shown.

With a big slow-turning motor like the one shown in MoToR BoatinG's design for this month, Henry Johnson James can haul along at a good 4 1/2 knots two loaded barges 130 feet by 30 feet by 4 1/2 feet draft. The motor indicated is an Atlas-Imperial Diesel 160 h. p. turning at 350 r. p. m. The weight of this motor is well down in the hull; this, coupled with ample breadth and firm bilges gives ample stability even if the tow line leads athwartships in turning.

Our little tug has ample freeboard and bulwarks to be safe and usable in rather rough water; the lines of the hull are well balanced and the weights in proper location and proportion to assure excellent sea-going ability. With the fuel oil capacity shown, 800 gallons, the little boat has a cruising radius of something over 1200 miles at 6 knots speed.

Plans for Henry Johnson James are $300
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