Builds A Steam Boat

| July/August 1961

  • Homemade steamboat's
    Homemade steamboat's only deck is catwalk with helpful handrail above. 'Windows' except front are steel.
  • Proud Hezzy West
    Proud Hezzy West takes position at the wheel of the North wind to steer out into the Anacostia Channel.

  • Homemade steamboat's
  • Proud Hezzy West

Our boy, Mr. H. H. Wist, Washington, D. C, made it. Here is a very interesting and informative article on how he built his own steam boat. The article is taken from Popular Mechanics Magazine about the year 1958. Sure looks good to me. -Elmer.

Like many another man, Hezzy West wanted a boat. But with him, as time passed, the 'want' grew to be an acute ache. Worse, Hezzy wanted a particular kind of craft a steamboat.

Such a boat, he knew, was expensive. The few hundred dollars he had saved would hardly make the down payment on the kind of a boat he wanted. Therefore he decided to build the boat himself. A welder and machinist by trade, Hezzy had worked for years with steam engines and boats in the vicinity of his home, a suburb of Washington, D. C. He felt that he could build a satisfactory steamboat.

'I simply thought how I wanted her to look,' he says, 'then I laid the keel for a 30-footer, and I built her right up from there.'

Not only did Hezzy build the steel hull, square cabin, smoke funnel and bilge pump; he also built the two steam engines. The larger of these a two-cylinder affair which develops 32 hp, propels the boat. The smaller one drives the generator which supplies electricity.

The only part of the North wind, as he calls his boat, that he did not build is the boiler. 'There are two kinds of boilers,' he explains, 'the fire-tube in which fire goes through the tubes rather than around them, and the water-tube in which water goes through the tubes.'


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