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Friday, May 21, 2010

The scariest part.....

Most people are afraid of wood boats, they think they'll rot and sink or something, I'm not sure.  Wood does not scare us, we can fix wood.  We have the tools, we have the technology, we can fix it. :)  The engine on the other hand scared the heck out of me, it's really big.  But Jason assured us he would be around and show us how to start, maintain and run the power plant that lives in the belly of Iver.  That was key in our decision to buy the tug.  Without having a ships engineer on call, we would not have considered buying the tug. 

 The engine room

In this photo Bill is working on the generator, a 32KW noisy giant piece of machinery, you can see the size of the Enterprise DMG6 diesel engine.  Yes, you can still get parts for this beast.  The cylinders are 12" and it generates 400 hp.  It's a direct reversing engine, that means there is no neutral, if you want to change from moving forward to going in reverse, you must first stop the engine and restart in reverse. The engine does not have a starter like a car, it uses compressed air to start.  The generator is needed to run the air compressor, there are three very large air tanks.  We need at least 120 lbs of air to start the engine, air is also used to help with the steering (air assist) and to run the massive anchor winch.  The compressor is a very important piece of machinery.
Having grown up on farms (or ranches as they are called in California) Bill is familiar with big diesel engines, this one is very similar to the big cat tractors he used to drive around the ranch as a kid.  It didn't scare him quite as much as it scared me. :)  I'm good with Volkswagens. 
This is Iver's third engine, it was installed in 1954 so it's fairly new. :)


  1. Hi Juli & Bill,
    I guess we really don't get to understand a vessel until delve into it's bowels. And the scale of things! I just have a puny yacht. You've got everything to the fourth power.

    It was great meeting you at Folklife. For pictures of Sea Lass, go to my website at www.matthewmoeller.com

    Fair Winds
    Cap'n Matt

  2. Certainly she generates more than 400 h.p.... did you mean 4000? Very clean looking plant, nonetheless... what an awesome project!

  3. nope, I meant 400 hp, it's all about torque not speed. These are slow turners. The newest Iver Foss built in 1977 and working today is rated at 2,400 hp