The Most Useful Harbor Vessel
All of the New York Harbor School vessels bring their own abilities to the waterfront. But the most useful of them all is Privateer. Privateer is a 48ft ex-Coast Guard Buoy Tender leased to the school from the Staten Island Ferry. One of the unique attributes of Privateer is the pilothouse. With a pilothouse, Privateer can be operated in any weather while her crew stays safe inside. This gives Harbor School the opportunity to be on the water all year round. Another great attribute of Privateer is the A-Frame crane located on the stern. The crane is hydraulically operated, has a capacity of 5,000 lbs, and has been a great asset to programs such as the Billion Oyster Project. One of the most unique parts of Privateer is the Z-Drive. A Z-Drive is a propeller mounted on a pod that can turn 360 degrees, with a system like this there is no need for a rudder and gives a vessel the ability to move in any direction. With the Z-Drive, Privateer is highly maneuverable and can go nearly anywhere due to her relatively low draft. But the Z-Drive can also be considered a disadvantage. This is because it is more difficult for a new trainee to operate Privateer due to her unique propulsion system.