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Sidewheelers that could operate paddles independently?

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  #1  
Old 2nd February 2019, 15:37
Sawpatin Sawpatin is offline
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Sidewheelers that could operate paddles independently?

Hello folks,
Newby here with an amateur passion for paddle steamers. I'm looking for info on the types of engine configurations in sidewheelers (any time between the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century) that could allow them to operate their paddle-wheels independently, including contra-rotating them or disengaging one while keeping the other moving.

I've heard this feature was found in paddle tugs of the period, but I don't know how the machinery was set up to allow this. I've also read mentions of certain American paddlewheel coasters using double-beam engines that could allow this system...

Any info on this topic would be appreciated

Last edited by Sawpatin; 2nd February 2019 at 15:50. Reason: clarified
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Old 3rd February 2019, 05:35
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Tom Alexander Canada Tom Alexander is offline
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Maybe someone else could post on this too, but when I was in my mid teens (circa 1955) I used to travel across the Thames on the Woolwich ferries quite frequently. There were glass observation windows so passengers could see into the engine room. I vaguely recollect there were two steam engines - one for each paddle so quite easy to operate the paddles in different directions.

Picture of one attached.
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Old 4th February 2019, 08:36
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R58484957 England R58484957 is offline
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Greetings Sawpatin and welcome to SH. Bon voyage.
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Old 4th February 2019, 10:39
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pompeyfan United Kingdom pompeyfan is offline
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Sawpatin

Welcome to SH. Good to have you aboard

You may be interested in the paddle tug below, Dexterous, which I took in Gibralta from Canberra during the summer of 1972. I have also uploaded her to the gallery.
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Old 6th February 2019, 22:57
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I really must read things more carefully. I read it that you took the tug from Canberra to Gibraltar, you became a nautical hero for a moment.
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