LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

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LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby nyandw » Sun May 13, 2012 10:47 pm

Anyone know the name/method used in a tug handling two barges in this fashion?
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby BobLI » Mon May 14, 2012 12:11 pm

For some strange reason the name "hipping" pops up. The barges are attached to the sides aka hips.
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby Rbts Stn » Mon May 14, 2012 2:30 pm

From and to where were these cars barged?
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby LongIslandTool » Mon May 14, 2012 3:19 pm

The illustrious LIRR Meitowax is "hipping two barges heads and tails" in that summer 1960 photo taken near Long Island City in the East River.

"Meitowax," often written as "Matouwac" is thought to be the earliest recorded name for Long Island, and Indian word meaning something like "place of shells".

In later years, the LIRR was paid 10% over costs by the PRR to operate the maritime business, as freight traffic was barred from the East River tunnels. That brought the railroad a profit of $200,000 per year in 1958.
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby nyandw » Mon May 14, 2012 9:38 pm

LongIslandTool wrote:The illustrious LIRR Meitowax is "hipping two barges heads and tails" in that summer 1960 photo taken near Long Island City in the East River.

"Meitowax," often written as "Matouwac" is thought to be the earliest recorded name for Long Island, and Indian word meaning something like "place of shells".

In later years, the LIRR was paid 10% over costs by the PRR to operate the maritime business, as freight traffic was barred from the East River tunnels. That brought the railroad a profit of $200,000 per year in 1958.


Great, Tool! Is this a LIRR term only (hipping)? What is the: "heads and tails"? Paul Strubeck indicates: "Just a pair alongside or on the hip." This is the phrase I forgot. The two barges on each side as on a person's hips.
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby LongIslandTool » Tue May 15, 2012 5:18 am

Both terms are standard to the maritime industry. "Heads and tails" refer to the tug pushing the barges backwards. As the barge stern (back or aft) usually has stabilizers built into the hull, barges being pushed backwards are more stable and less likely to lead or wander in one direction or another. Hence when shuttled around harbors or hipped, barges are usually pushed backwards.
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby ch00ch00 » Tue May 15, 2012 1:53 pm

Any time I got full of myself, I just have to remember the tug operation at LIC. The tugs handled the barges as you see them in the picture. They split the 2 at the float bridges, tied one off and bridged one. This is all done while the tides are running, up or down. Being a RR engineer was a great and rewarding job, but if you can imagine handling the trains, without tracks. That is REAL judgement.

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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby keyboardkat » Tue May 15, 2012 2:47 pm

Freight cars may have been barred from the East River tunnels but it wasn't always that way.
During World War I, the PRR operated heavy coal trains through the Hudson River tunnels, Penn Station, and the East River tunnels using MU'd DD-1 third-rail side-rod electric locomotives.
No one would dream of trying that today, even if we had heavy freight electrics that could run on catenary juice. Even if passenger trains were much fewer, just imagine heavy coal trains slogging through all those crossovers and double-slip switches. And what's the maximum grade in the tunnels? Those DD-1s must have been something! Think how many amps of current they must have drawn at 660v.d.c. to lug loaded coal trains up that grade!
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby Nova55 » Wed May 16, 2012 9:50 pm

The barges are on the hip, or alongside. Referring to it as "HIpping" is a new one though.

Yes, when you push a barge backwards (usually because of the skegs (stabilizers as tool put it) it handles better in the harbor/river (cant do this outside) it is called heads to tails. This picture is not heads to tails, The stern of a carfloat is the end with the bumpers. Never seen a carfloat (or any piece of railroad owned marine equipment) with skegs either. Since carfloats don't have skegs, and both ends are raked, it does not make a difference which way they go, until they get to the bridge, in which case they obviously need to go bow out.

-He who has played with enough barges.
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Re: LIRR Tug Meitowax 2 barge question

Postby LongIslandTool » Thu May 17, 2012 7:44 am

You're right on all your points, Nova. Tool stands corrected.
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