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Rhone paddler "Pilat

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For many years my "Pilat" paddler stands as good as unnoticed in the cellar of my mothers house. She was my second life steam model. Now I conclude, to make her functionable again. The model after plan of Bernard Retif is only semi scale. Scale is 1 : 33, but to avoide problems of transport, the model in Mr. Retifs plan got only lenght of 1400 mm, the correct lenght in 1 : 33 would be 1940 mm. At time I made the Pilat in 1989, I`ve extended lenght to 1510 mm for better proportions.

I now made a boiler test - was ok - and an engine overhaul. This oscillating engine was the only complete home made one I `ve made for my boats. The engine got new piston rings, new silver soldered steam tubes and a new paint, yesterday she made a test run outside the model, which was sufficient.

Some pictures of boat and engine.... May be next week I can show some picture running the Pilat on a lake!

Interesting engine & gearing Thomas......

I she about .....2:1........the 2:1 again?  :whistle

Will she now stay with your Fleet at your home?



Very nice Thomas. The proportions look fine to me.

Is that a small portable torch tip you use as a burner?


Hi Derek and Jurgen,
the gear reduction are two times 1 : 3, therefore 1 : 6. Bore is 10 mm with 20 mm stroke. Next week I will make some pictures of the model at the lake, then the boat will go back to mothers home, it`s her ship - she wanted "Pilat" as a present some years ago. From my point of sight, the today boat looks a little simplistic - compared with my later models. The boiler was ok, but I renewed the burner and the gas cartridge, both is made by Rothenberger, the common factory for soldering products in Germany.
In 2017 I got a french book about Rhone steamships with the original plans of the "Pilat" type tugs, I add some pictures. On principle the model plan was not too far from the original, but hull is too short and there is a lack of the parabolic bow section. Last 3 pictures show other interesting Rhone steamers.

I considered, to alter lenght of hull to original size, but work is too much - it`s better to concetrate for making new projects.


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