The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Draught and Calculations of the Lake Propeller "Oriental."
The Monthly Nautical Magazine and Quarterly Review (New York, NY), May 1855, pp. 139-40

Full Text

The "Oriental" was built at Buffalo, in 1854, by Messrs. Bidwell and Banta, and is the largest screw vessel on the Lakes. She is of 950 tons register, and carries 750 tons of freight. The weight of engine, boiler, and 100 tons of coal, is equal to 208 tons. The loaded draught of water is 11 feet. Average speed when loaded is equal to 9 miles per hour in good weather, but she runs much faster and steers better when light.

The semi-circle described in the engraving of body-plan represents the periphery and position of the screw propeller as now fitted. The first screw was made 22 feet in diameter, but was impracticable for use -- the vessel refusing to steer. The present screw was found best adapted for propulsory purposes, having less diameter and pitch ; and no difficulty is now experienced in working ship. It will be observed that the dip of screw-blades is small (60 square feet immersed when loaded) in proportion to [p. 140] the transverse area of midship section, (equal to 297 feet) and the bulk of displacement. The engines are also light, weighing less than 100 tons, working steam at a moderate pressure, and consuming only three-fourths of a ton of coal per hour. The weight of vessel and cargo, at 11 feet draught of water, may be set down at 1,400 tons gross. Under such circumstances, an extraordinary speed cannot be expected.

The stern is shaped and built like that of a yawl boat, in order to permit the wheel to extend above the transom; the guards being carried around the stern as usual.

We have not yet been placed in possession of the particulars of her construction ; but in connection with the draught, and the remarks concerning her engines, and also those of the propellers "Buffalo" and "International," to be found in the following article, page 141, we give the calculations of hull, as we have worked them out from the draught.

Length on load line for calculations,217
Height of same above base line, 10
Height of planksheer above base line, 14.50
Breadth moulded on load line at dead flat, 33
Breadth extreme, 33.66
Area of load water-line section in square feet, 5629.28
Exponent of the same, 0,757
Centre of gravity of same abaft mid-length, 8.58
Area of greatest transverse section (moulded,) sq. feet, 296.77
Exponent of the same (full) 0.90
Location abaft mid-length on load line, 4.50
Moulded displacement in cubic feet, 45068.86
" " in tons gross, 1287.68
Exponent of displacement, 0.63
Centre of gravity of same below load line, 4 34
Centre of gravity of same abaft mid-length, 5.77
Moment of stability (s. 2-3 y3 dx) =3919,69
Height of meta centre above buoyancy, 8.69

The "Oriental" was built for freighting purposes only. Her upper deck extends the entire length of vessel, as usual in Lake propellers, upon which the cabins for the accommodation of officers and crew, only, are constructed.

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Date of Original:
May 1855
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Geographic Coverage:
  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 42.88645 Longitude: -78.87837
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Draught and Calculations of the Lake Propeller "Oriental."