[QUOTE=Topsail;132198]I know that these z-drive tugs can do miracles through high professionalism from their captain. Maybe I’m an old fashion pilot but when I feel that there is not enough room for the tug to perform adequately, I make him fast on the opposite parallel body. I don’t like the tug being squeezed or crunched … between the stern and the bulbous bow of a moored vessel, in a crowdy 30ft gap with headlines hanging over head, stern lines sneaking in the water and into the prop wash. When there’s all kind of room at the stern, I have no objection whatsoever. I then let the pleasure to the tug’s captain. Team work.[/QUOTE]
Yes, but you’re the pilot, I’m not, no doubt there. Just from experience once nearly abeam the spot (100+ feet) the tug would usually have shortened their line with their bow up against the corner of the transom if not a few feet off. With a good winch you can work even more miracles but no issue backing effectively to 45 tons or so here in my experience as a boat guy, within 10-15 seconds of winch action I could give you full power astern… and some ships %100 up against. If I will be backing all the way to the berth I’ll just keep the line shortened up to 50’ or so outboard the ship on approach.
One reason, as explained to me by the pilots I have worked with over the years is that some ships, particularly certain classes of post panamax containerships cannot get an astern bell until under a much higher threshold of headway than normal. The nature of the harbor and berths requires them to carry a good deal of headway near the berth, and without the tug to help slow down they cannot get that backing bell in time to slow down. Once they get that astern bell then the tug is occasionally moved to the quarter just aft of the house especially with a weak thruster.
[QUOTE=Kennebec Captain;132215]In Europe the pilots put tugs center line almost 100%. In Japan very rarely in other Asian ports it varies. In U.S. sometimes but not often. Pilots that handle a lot of tankers one center line aft more often then non-tanker ports, probably because that’s what everyone is used to.
.In some European ports the work is in tight quarters and they keep working even with relativity high wind speed. I’ve gone through the locks in Bremerhaven which doesn’t have much clearance in 35 + kts sustained using three huge tugs, one fwd center line and two aft center line and the forth smaller one for good luck Depending which berth you use some turns are very tight plus for some berths you back thorough the locks because not much room to turn around inside.
For the ship’s crew, tugs on the side recessed bitts is a lot easier. Running lines with the tug fast on the center line is a hassle, especially aft with an inexperienced crew. Sometimes we need to let the tug go while mooring or have them help a bit.
I have been fortunate to work in a few places where we would put the line on the center a fair bit, not always but often enough to understand some of the limitations and advantages, at least from the boat side of things. What you describe is about what I understand which is good to see from a boat guy’s perspective. As far as the line being in the way for the crew on deck mooring, we often will let go the tug’s line once spring lines are out, breasts if possible. Very rarely is the line kept until all lines are fast. 1 in 100 times this is an issue for us and we can keep pinning the ship to the dock. A ship like yours we use one method inbound, another method outbound, all depends move to move and berth to berth here.