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The Ship
The Yeoman Rose, a 973-tonne cargo vessel, was built in 1974 and is unusual with respect to her method of construction and motive power. The keel is inside the hull, unlike other vessels of this size. I am told that this single fact makes the Yeoman Rose a boat and not a ship! The rear section comprises the standard accommodation block and propulsion unit. The propulsion system is most unusual. As this class of vessel was intended for river work and likely to be berthed on tidal moorings that might dry at low tide, the flat, keelless hull allowed the vessels to sit safely on the bottom. The rear section is swept up. Consequently, the ship is not very deep and also flat-bottomed. Hanging down from this section are two large vertical pods, the bottom of which contain a ninety-degree gearbox that the propeller is attached to, just like a giant outboard engine. These pods can be independently rotated to effect steering and even a degree of braking. I am told that as these vessels are so manoeuvrable it is quicker to do a U-turn than stop! These giant 'outboards' are powered by individual conventional high-speed Diesel engines. The choice of high-speed engines makes for a very much smaller physical engine size, and considerable weight-reduction. The original specification called for 'Caterpillar' turbo-charged engines, mass-produced for use in earth-moving equipment, and therefore very cost-effective.

Steering and control of engine speed are effected by two small levers on the bridge. Also in the engine room is yet another two-cylinder air-cooled Lister engine. This auxiliary engine has two primary functions; water pumping (fire, ballast, deck-wash, etc) and 24 Volt battery-charging. The entire ship's electrical supply is 24 Volts.

The accommodation block is all at deck level. Two small cabins are for deckhands or seamen. Two larger cabins are for Skipper and Mate. A single shower, sink and WC unit are provided, and finally a galley. The bridge is accessed from a stairway close to the Skipper's and Mate's cabin.

Equipment on the bridge:- Radar (this was running non-stop), two dual-watch VHF-transceivers (plus two emergency hand-helds), GPS satellite-navigation equipment, Navtex weather receiver, HF-transceiver, compass, autopilot and a Aldis signal light, as well as the usual life-jackets, first aid and flares, etc.

Studio Equipment: Two EMT turntables, Pye SM8 mixer, AKG D12 announcer's mic, one guest mic, one triple-cart and one single-cart machines, Revox 1/4" tape deck, one cassette deck, electronic reverb unit.

Feeding the transmitter was a combined 6.5 KHz filter and compressor/limiter. The transmitter was a synthesised home-brew with series-modulated FET PA. (IRF740)

© Allan Trainer & Radio London

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