Auxiliary Steering Station Aboard
By Patrick McSherry
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Proceeding forward on OLYMPIA,
on the starboard side, passing again under the signal bridge, the
visitor will see a set of three large, interconnected ship’s wheels.
These wheels, on the ships centerline, and arranged one behind the
next, were each to be manned by two crewmen. This station would
come into use if the steering stations in the pilot house and in the
conning tower were destroyed or otherwise put out of action.
Auxiliary steering station under the signal bridge.
From outside of the
wheelhandles, the diameter of each wheel is six feet (6’). This
station would be used to steer the vessel if the
hydraulically-assisted steering control in the pilot house and
conning tower was no longer operational. Even with six men on this
interconnected wheel system, turning the ship's rudder took quite a
bit of energy. In a storm, if this station was used, the men on the
wheel would have a tendency to be lifted off the deck and smashed
into the deck as the waves buffetted the rudder.
Proceed to the Open Spar Deck
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