Man’s toy behind 900 hp on the main

Both have big grins on their faces: 900 hp under their feet, blue skies above them, and a job that requires real guys. Sascha friedrich and frank scheuble have spent the last few days traveling with an unusual "push boat" on the main river on the main from viereth to habfurt and back again. It was not a pleasure trip with this vessel, which does not move on the water for most of its life, but is busy holding up the water. A steel fabricator from aschaffenburg, germany, has put together more than 200 tons of steel to form a so-called revision lock, which will in future do its job between viereth and rothenfels in the area of the waterway and shipping authority in schweinfurt.

Home port is habfurt, where its preganger is still moored – meanwhile already badly in the years come.

30 meters long

The new monster, weighing several tons, is over 30 meters long and has two floating chambers based on the catamaran principle. However, they look different: one lift body is round, the other looks more like a wall. It is also one, because when placed in the right position, this part of the revision lock can be flooded with water, whereupon it sinks into the river water, forming a working platform and acting like a bulkhead.

For example currently now at the vierether weir. Sealed off from the river water, the revision lock provides the working space to remove and replace one weir pommel at a time. The two steel drums, which are over 30 meters wide, must be replaced, as well as the weir walkways that cross the weir, which are already in place at the lock. "Viereth will be a rough construction site", female skipper sascha friedrich.

Once a year, in april, 760 kilometers of the main river, including the danube and the main-danube canal, are closed to shipping. Then it's the turn of the heinzelmannchen. After all, the locks, which are between 60 and 90 years old, need a rejuvenating treatment. This year there is no work to be done in knetzgau and limbach in the district of habberge, but in ottendorf the lock chamber is dry: a survey is being carried out on the upper main gate with preliminary investigations into the solid structure, the gate drive is being repaired and the structure is due for inspection.

On a special voyage

The "angermunde and the "hawk, a smaller track vehicle, which was used as a "brakeman" in the back, so to speak have in the past few days, the revision closure between them, the tow "geubt" to the next location manovan. It took several pushes and pulls to get a feel for the new arrival. Such a 120-meter vessel reacts very differently than an inland push boat convoy. The special trip was important and naturally an experience in the skipper's daily routine. Because towing, friedrich explains, is forbidden on the main; it can only be done with special permission and a signal sign. The only ones who were now allowed to sail on the main were skipper sascha friedrich and his team – which explains the big grin on their faces.

At the same time, the employees of the waterway and shipping office have gained important insights. In the future, when you will have the rough "sealing flap" as they maneuver to the next location, they will know one thing for sure after their various attempts at pushing. "Encounter traffic is not possible", stated friedrich. The thing must be handled very carefully, and it will certainly always have to be alone on the river main. Who would not like to be captain and master of the main river??

Now the 43-year-old's "spab" is over is over. The experienced skipper has the rough rhine patent and is the only one in the district who is allowed to move all ships, from icebreakers to special ships such as the sounding ship "johannes kepler". He will switch to this next month and, together with a surveyor, will take depth measurements on the danube as far as the black sea.

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