Image from Rotortug site - click to go there, then click "Take the 360 tour" at extreme lower right side of their home page
You'll remember the Rotortug item we covered a short while ago (click "Rotortug" in the Categories menu on the right side of this page). For a tug man like myself, this is a fascinating idea that would seem to powerfully extend the capabilities of the already capable tractor tug.

If you know something about tugs, and tractors in particular, the Rotortug concept is interesting - it takes the already flexible tractor paradigms (conventional tractor or "water tractor" with the two drives in the bow, and the Z-drive "reverse tractor" with the drives at the stern) and adds another element: a third thruster. 

In a Rotortug two of the drives are located at the bow, as in a traditional tractor, with a third positioned at the stern. There was a picture showing this arrangement in the other post, but the best thing would be to click the picture above, which will take you to the Rotortug website. If you look at the extreme lower right side of that page, you'll see "Take the 360 tour" in small print - click on that, then click on various camera icons you'll see on the little tug image to get information, take tours, and see videos of the tug in operation. 

My thanks to Mr. Evan Willemsen of Rotortug, who commented in response to the first story: 
"Please look at the new website of Rotortug.com and visit the 360 tour at the bottom. You can navigate by pushing on the small model in the left down corner. In the 360 picture at the bridge you see the three handles. by pointing and clicking with the mouse on the handles you find a small movie about operating a rotortug. You will find hidden information and movies all over, have fun!"

So that answers my question about how the third thruster is operated! I'd guess that most of the hands-on work is done with the two forward thrusters, as with a conventional tractor, and the third unit comes into play occasionally and so can be left alone some of the time. Very interesting!

Are you involved in working with or operating these unique tugs? Please comment and help us understand what it's like and what they can do!

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