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KITCHEN RUDDERS

THEIR INVENTOR and SOME


APPLICATIONS
This document is essentially a supplement to "Kitchen Rudders Going Full Circle", which
can be found online on scribd.com at http://www.scribd.com/doc/22236032/Kitchen-Rudders-
Going-Full-Circle it, amongst other things, containing drawings and details of an installation
fitted in a 1966-built 40-foot long GRP-hulled Keith Nelson launch which was put up for sale in
the late autumn of 2009.

Contrary to the persuasions of many writers and texts, 'Jack' Kitchen was NOT an Admiral in
The Royal Navy, nor was his surname 'Kitchener', that 'Kitchener' the one famous for his
1914 WWI recruitment poster and he, Field Marshal Horatio Herbert Kitchener, 1st Earl
Kitchener KG, KP, GCB, OM, GCSI, GCMG, GCIE, ADC, PC, lost at sea on June 5, 1916
whilst en route to the Russian port of Arkhangelsk aboard HMS "Hampshire", she striking a
mine laid by the newly-launched German U-boat U-75, commanded by Curt Beitzen and
sinking west of The Orkney Islands, Kitchener, his staff and 643 of the crew of 655 drowning
or dying of exposure and Kitchener's body never found.

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John George Aulsebrook Kitchen
John George Aulsebrook Kitchen was born at 54 Cropper's Hill, Eccleston, St. Helens, in
Lancashire, on November 4, 1869, his father, William Henry Aulsebrook Kitchen, described
as an 'agent' and his Portuguese mother, Ellen Teresa Francisca Kitchen (neé Joza), Kitchen
seemingly moving later to 28 Rose Grove, Manchester, he then serving his time with an
unidentified engineering firm there.

In January 1897, Kitchen married Sarah Isobel Garnett (1876 - 1969) in Windermere's Carver
Memorial (Congregational) Church, Sarah's father a florist and nurseryman with gardens at
Rayrigg Road, Bowness-on-Windermere, the couple living initially in Manchester's Alexandra
Park but soon moving to Heathwaite, Windermere and, when The Lune Valley Motor Carriage
Works was started in 1903, moving to Lancaster, first to Aldcliffe Road and then to 7 Rose
Bank, Scotforth.

Then, in 1921 and The Lune Valley Motor Carriage Works, founded in 1903, running down,
the Kitchens moved to Storrs Park, Bowness-on-Windermere and the Kitchens building
'Brookfield', near the Ferry Nab, a separate garage, with a workshop above., satisfying
Kitchen's interests.

The Kitchens had no children, Sarah Kitchen's neice, Daisy Garnett, living with them at
'Brookfield' till 1926, when she married Frank D. Hoggarth, a tobacco and snuff manufacturer,
the Hogarths, at least after Frank's retiral, living in Kendal and, they then 'down-sizing' and
moving to a smaller house, Daisy, thinking no one interested and space limited, throwing out
a lot of Kitchen's papers and, apart from his actual patent applications themselves, no trace
now exists of any of Kitchen's own papers or drawings, Kitchen lodging 175 'Provisional Patent
Applications' between 1891 and 1936 and carrying 118 of them through to completion.

Kitchen, he and his wife described as being both slightly below medium height, who had a
moustache, smoked a pipe or occasional cigar and did not drink, was a man of warmth and
charm, a man with a sense of humour and a liking for the odd practical joke, a friendly man
who was liked by everyone, even by those who had lost money investing in some of his failed
ideas.

In 1903, Kitchen entered business in Lancaster with one Ludlow Patton Perkins, they trading
initially as The Lune Valley Motor Carriage Works and then, in 1906, moving to Lancaster's
Wheatfield Street, trading as The Lune Valley Engineering Company, the banks taking over in
1920, a liquidator appointed in 1924 and the company finally dissolved in 1929.

Perkins, who died in 1928 at the age of 56, had an interesting ancestry for his great-
grandfather, Jacob Perkins, born in 1776 in Newburyport, Massachussets, had returned to
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England in 1819 and had worked on a high pressure steam engine in 1822, a steam device for
projecting musket balls in 1825 and then, in 1834, had made a working model and patented a
refrigerating machine based on that invented by Dr Cullen in 1755, Jacob Perkins credited
with making the first 'vapour-compression freezing machine'.

Rather temptingly for Perkins, the Wheatfield Street Works were immediately to the east of
the bridge over the main Euston to Carlisle railway line, Lancaster's County Hotel to the west
and Perkins regular transit of the railway bridge reportedly contributing to health problems
and an earlier than expected demise.

Whatever the case about Perkins, Kitchen was recognised as a good employer, leaving his
car outside the works for the local boys to play around and taking them out for trips around
the town in it, a BIG deal to the children of that early age of the motor car.

Whilst Kitchen had taken out some patents for 'motor and steam vehicle products', twenty of
these patents concerned with tyres, others for fluid pressure brakes, air and fluid pumps,
acetylene-powered vehicle lamps, steam-powered bicycles and tricycles and motor car
radiators, 'The Lune Valley' companies were firmly focused on the design and production of
steam boilers and 'portable field cookers', Kitchen patenting a self-heating can for preserved
foods in 1914 and, The War Office disinterested, 'the war over by Christmas', the idea
pursued by the Americans, 'self-heating cans' becoming part of the standard emergency
rations issue in WWII, though the principle not necessarily by then credited to Kitchen.

Able to raise steam very quickly, the Lune Valley and other similar boilers soon became
standard in the steam pinnaces of the British and other 'Commonwealth' navies, the
manufacture of the 'Lune Valley' boilers licensed to Simpson Strickland and Company of
Dartmouth in 1906, Kitchen's own interest in cooking leading him to cook grilled food
underneath his steam launch's boiler burner flame while steaming round Lake Windermere
perhaps giving him the idea for a 'portable field
cooker' using an adaptation of the boat's 'Lune Valley' burner.

The Lune Valley company established in 1903, Kitchen had begun testing out boilers on Lake
Windermere, Bowness-on-Windermere boatbuilders Borwick Brothers early involved in
Kitchen's experiments, these watched with interest by Isaac Henry Storey (1854 - 1925), a
director of Storey Bros. & Co., a well-known firm of printed linoleum manufacturers in
Lancaster.

Storey, reportedly a quiet man, quite like Kitchen in character, who lived at Loughrigg Brow,
Ambleside and had similar interests to Kitchen's, was also particularly interested in wireless
telegraphy and carrying out experiments on controlling boats by radio, some experiments
being carried out on his Windermere sailing yacht, the "Electra", named before Marconi's
gave that name to his own 1904-built yacht.

Whilst in 1898, at an exhibition in New York's Madison Square Garden, Nikola Tesla (1856 -
1943), the mechanical and electrical engineer, had demonstrated how he could control a
small boat by sending signals, on different frequencies, to its different controls, a U.S. patent
obtained on his inventions on November 8, 1898 and, in 1903, Leonardo Torres y Quevedo
(1852 - 1936), the Spanish airship designer and engineer, had obtained a patent, in France,
Spain, Britain and The United States, for his Telekino , demonstrated that year at The Paris
Academy of Science, the Telekino, a robot that executed commands transmitted by
electromagnetic waves, it seemingly The World's first apparatus for radio control.

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Though Torres, who demonstrated his invention in the presence of the king and a crowd of
onlookers in Bilbao in 1906, remotely guiding a boat from the shore, would try to apply the
Telekino to projectiles and torpedoes, he had to abandon the project for lack of financing.

In 1904, Kitchen and Storey fitted radio controls to a 30-foot long launch, the "Bat", on Lake
Windermere and too that same year, following successful demonstrations at Morecambe,
Kitchen offered The Admiralty a 'steerable' radio-controlled torpedo, his offer rejected, Their
Lordships of The Admiralty seemingly more interested in completing their designs for the first
'Dreadnought' battleship.

Kitchen's 'steerable' torpedo, controlled by a shore-based, spark transmitter, was 'surface


running', its short aerial on top acting as a 'visual locator' and guideable by an operator with a
telescope 'for at least a mile', was some fifty years ahead of its time and only the 'mid-
century' development of ultra short waves, highly sensitive acoustics systems and reliable
tracking devices would be able to realise Kitchen's concept in practical terms, Storey, his own
company prospering, going into partnership with Kitchen around 1910.

After his forays on Lake Winderemere with the "Bat", his enthusiasm for all things 'watery'
undampened by The Admiralty's rejection of his torpedo, Kitchen, who would develop a very
high capacity steam boiler, focused his attention on the need to develop a lightweight
'reversing gear' for motor boats.

In the early 1900's, reversing gearboxes for vessels propelled by internal combustion engines
were as notoriously unreliable as well as they were bulky and the majority of The British
Admiralty's 'picket' and 'liberty' boats continued to be fitted with steam engines, they
requiring no gearboxes, which reversed by changing the engine's valve timings, The
Admiralty reasoning that while small motor engines might be lighter and less bulky that their
steam counterparts, any savings that might be made would be offset in these days by the
need to fit them with gearboxes, the combined weight of motor engine and gearbox little
different from the weight of their launches proven steam plants

Even with the high-speed steam boilers, it still took time to raise steam, engines, boilers,
fuel and water occupied valuable space and navies soon had to begin to focusing on the use of
the internal combustion engine, its design and reliability steadily improving but the internal
combustion engine unable to reverse without the use of a gearbox, that too somewhat
problematic as 'hot bulb' engines were then in common use and these liable to stop when the
gearbox was used to bring in astern power.

Clearing weeds away from his boat's propellor one day while it was tied up at a jetty, Kitchen
noticed the force of the propellor's slipstream when it was running 'full ahead' and, when he
placed a wooden board in the water, astern of the propellor, the boat then too appeared to
move astern, the idea of Kitchen's 'reversing rudder' born.

In his original patent application, 3249/1914, Kitchen separated the control rods for each of
the twin 'half-cylinder-shaped' rudders to allow them to be partially rotated either separately
or together, the 'uni-directional' propellor itself rotating within the 'clam shells' to contain its
slipstream but, for general ease of operation, the concentric control rods were linked to a
screwed rod, controlled by a hand wheel, the boat's tiller swung to steer the boat, that
arrangement adopted as standard by The Admiralty, Kitchen's first demonstration boats too
were fitted with a mechanism whereby the rudders were opened and closed simply by raising
and lowering a lever pivoted to the tiller, the boat, regardless of its ahead speed, stopped
almost dead in its tracks.

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Kitchen played his 'party trick' when he took some apprentices out on trials in Glasson Dock
and, trying to sell the idea to Vickers, got little reaction about the boat's performance from
their man sent to investigate until, getting fed up with the man, Kitchen headed for Bowness'
landing stage at full speed and, the terrified Vickers' man holding on to the boat's thwart with
both hands, Kitchen 'put on the brakes', lifting up the pivoted lever on the tiller and stopping
the boat dead and then spun it round in its own length to face the other way.

The solution to the problem of taking way off, especially, large tankers and bulk cargo vessels
remains and, despite numerous proposals and trials, there has been little success, Kitchen's
own design of rudder gear best suited to small ships, partly because of the huge pressures
that would be placed on the rudder of super-ships were they to be reversed suddenly, these
liable to twist and shear from their mountings and render ships unmanageable in confined
seaways.

Kitchen's Reversing Rudder Company was formed after The Great War, on June 5, 1919, its
office in Liverpool's Royal Liver Building. Kitchen and two others, Gordon Henry Fraser and
Jeames Ryder O'Halon, who are named in two later rudder gear patents and presumably also
coming forward with funds, named as the company's directors and, being a small private
company, little information about its affairs is on record.

Though supplied to the British, Canadian, Australian and American navies, the popularity of
"Kitchen Rudders" declined quickly in the 1920's as marine engines, with built-in reversing
gear, though essentially expensive to manufacture and fit, became increasingly cheaper and
more reliable and Kitchen's Reversing Rudder Company went into liquidation on August 1,
1929, Kitchen by then looking at the potential for adapting the rudders for aircraft use, to cut
down landing distances, that idea, though never patented by Kitchen, later coming to
fruition in the jet age.

Despite commercial cash flow problems, Kitchen kept on inventing and his death, on March
27, 1940, was due to a freak accident, Kitchen at home in his workshop, drilling a hole with
a hand-drill and, leaning on the drill's handle to increase pressure, unfortunately ruptured an
internal blood vessel, the consequences fatal.

Above, in The Admiralty-adopted control arrangement, as the screwed rod is rotated by the
hand wheel, the nut moves towards the hand wheel and the operating rods rotate to open the
'clam shell' rudders, the boat steered to port or starboard by the tiller and the 'clam shell'
rudders moving with the tiller.

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By discarding the centuries-old rudder 'plate' and fitting twin curved-plate connical 'shields' to
a two section, 'male-to-female', rudder stock, to control the directional flow(s) of water
around the boat's propellor, Kitchen, without the need for any weighty and costly engine
gearbox, was able to give an ordinary, single screw, an even greater degree of
manoeuvrability that that possessed by any twin screw boat, even today.

The rudder consists of two curved metal plates mounted so that they encircle the propeller
(above). The movement of the tiller to port or starboard will turn both plates to starboard or
port, respectively, in the same manner as an ordinary rudder. In addition, the plates can be
closed together abaft the propeller, or opened out on each side of it, by a shaft which
revolves inside the rudder post and is controlled by a wheel and worm gearing on the tiller.

A 'relieving spring' is fitted on each side of the tiller just before the rudder post to prevent the
rudder from swinging from side to side and taking charge in a seaway. The fore end of the
tiller is supported by a quadrant to which it can be clamped in any position along its arc of
movement.

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The propeller always moves in the ahead direction and when the rudder plates are fully
opened out its normal thrust will propel the boat ahead but, if the plates are nearly closed
together abaft the propeller, its ahead thrust will be neutralised by the backwash of its
slipstream against the plates.
If the plates are closed still further the backwash of the propeller slipstream against them will
overcome the ahead thrust of the propeller and the boat will be propelled astern.

Thus, by opening and closing the rudder plates the boat can be made to move ahead or
astern at full, half or slow speed, or brought to a stop.

The boat is steered by the tiller in the same way as if she were fitted with an ordinary rudder
but, when the tiller is moved, the rudder effect of the plates is far greater and more effective
at all speeds and the boat will therefore answer her helm readily whether she is stopped, or
going ahead, or astern, however slowly or fast.

When turning at rest the rudder will exert its greatest effect when the plates are fully closed,
the tiller being worked as if the boat were going astern.

The speed of the boat, ahead or astern, can be controlled by the combined use of the tiller
wheels and engine throttle, or by the tiller wheel alone with the engine running at constant
speed ahead and, when lying alongside, the engine is throttled down to idling speed.

In describing these matters fully and for the educational benefit of others in later time, the
following diagram and explanation has been found amongst others at
http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/boat-design/kitchen-rudder-418-2.html

"The thrust is due to the whole flowfield, not just the local force on the propeller. The
propeller produces a narrow, high speed, jet directed at the rudder clamshells and, as it hits
the 'clamshell', it slows, spreads and turns forward. The attached picture of the potential
flow into an inside corner shows qualitatively what's happening.

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"The jet from the propeller forms a wall jet along the inside of the bucket formed by the
clamshells. This wall jet has tremendously more surface area than the round jet at the prop
and it entrains outside flow with it.

"This works like an ejector thrust augmentor, transfering some of the energy of the high-
speed jet from the propeller to a larger low-speed jet coming out, backwards, from the
bucket. The large amount of low-speed flow directed backwards produces more thrust than
the force acting on the prop itself.

"Another way to think about it is the high pressure, due to the low speed flow inside the
coloured arc in the attached picture, means there's a high pressure region inside the bucket.
The area of the bucket is larger than the area of the propeller so there's a net force
backwards.

"Both the momentum and the pressure/force balance approaches are equivalent of course,
the difference is determining which one is more convenient based on what you know".
(Contributed to the forum by 'tspeer').

The following series of photographs, of Kitchen's Reversing Rudder Company of Liverpool's


Unit No 904, on display at The Motorboat Museum, Wat Tyler Country Park, Pitsea Hall Lane,
Basildon, Essex SS16 4UH, were contributed to another website
http://www.oldmarineengine.com/discus/messages/5/1010.html by 'haylingbillyboat'.

Kitchen Rudder head, the lower, horizontal, vee-shaped, fixed bracket would have bolted
onto the boat's transom stern and the whole assembly above the bracket able to rotate, the
shape of the vee-shaped fixing arm out of view as the camera is horizontally level with the
bracket.

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This photo shows the same 'tiller' area ( tiller ) as the photograph above, one now looking
vertically up to the top of the shaft head (and the ceiling), looking up the main vertical axis of
the assembly to where the arms and there actuating links are attached to the two 'male-to-
female' concentric rudder shafts, which run down inside the bronze tiller casting - Essentially
in this photograph, one is looking aft, over the stern of the boat.

Here, the tiller area's thread and the plaque "Kitchen's Reversing Rudder Company,
Liverpool, No 904", the 'Acme' thread on the shaft protected by a sheath or cover with a slot
in it, to prevent the arms twisting, 'haylingbillyboat' unsure as to whether there is simply one
continuous thread or two, one left handed, one right handed, moving in opposite directions.

Here one can see how the bottom bearing works, the bronze skeg and the bottom joint of the
two fabricated and riveted sheet steel 'clamshell' buckets, both hard over to port and in the
nearly full astern position i.e, nearly closed together - The propellor itself and the propellor
shaft are missing, otherwise one would have been able to see at least part of a propellor
blade in this shot.
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This shot shows both buckets, the skeg (and the red remains of a wooden keel and hull), as
well as the propellor shaft aperture - Looking closely on the right hand bucket (nearer the
camera), the horizontal 'whiteish' line is in fact the lower one of the two riveted joints, each
bucket made of three pieces - two curves and a straight. Looking closely at the left hand
bucket, one can see the corresponding 'step' where there is a similar joint and one can also
see the top joint in this left hand bucket, a very simple, 'three-piece' riveted fabrication.

Unfortunately, says 'haylingbillyboat', "I did not get a very good shot of the crucial top
mounting, but there is a gland and then each bucket is on its own shaft or tube, all mounted
concentrically, so you have four nesting layers of tube - There is not a lot to see externally,
so one has to guess at the workings - The retaining nut is missing, but obviously fitted on the
threaded part of the shaft where the dab of red paint is - Again, it's not clear how the middle
shaft is fixed to its bucket, must be some sort of flange I think ?"

Here is the top of the rudder, the nested tubes - gland, rudder stock, one bucket, second
bucket - One can see the both buckets and the flanges joining the buckets to the shafts, the
propellor shaft gland is just visible lower down.

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Up at the top of the rudder stock again, looking 'notionally' forward and viewed from directly
astern and showing three tubes - the outer rudder stock 'sheath', outer bucket, inner
bucket, the yokes and their connecting rods and their method of fixing and the lubricating
holes, in fact one of them seized solid in this case !

This shows the actual tiller itself, the perspective odd because the tiller is above the camera
and the end of the screw thread spindle for the wheel which operates the 'clamshells', a small
'lathe-type' wheel, with a finger sticking out, as on a mill or lathe - The operating wheel
controlling the propellor wash with the buckets - ahead, astern, 'neutral' and in between and
the actual direction of the propellor wash, to turn to port or starboard etc. adjusted with the
tiller, the engine always run at constant revolutions when manoeuvring and all the
acceleration/deceleration is effected by the 'clamshell' buckets.

This shows the tiller itself disappearing vertically out of the picture, it looking as if it is silver
soldered on to the main casting and the horizontal end of the screw thread spindle, minus its
operating wheel, the threaded spindle inserted into the horizontal tiller casting and retained
by a sort of gland arrangement.

Three types of Royal Navy boats were fitted with "Kitcher Rudder" gear - the 36 foot
'pinnace', double-diagonally built with the steering gear at the stern, these fitted with three,
solid but removable, canopies and used as work-horses in the cruisers and larger ships; the
35 foot 'motor-cutter', clinker-built, with three canvas canopies on collapsible frames and
both having single screws and 4-cylinder Dorman diesel engines, the 36-foot 'pinnace' having
the 'double- wheel' form of Kitchen gear, the smaller 'clamshell' operating wheel on the
outside of the main steering wheel, instead of a tiller / operating wheel arrangement, as

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previously described and illustrated and the cutter having the basic tiller and wheel
arrangement.

The third type of boat was the 'Slow Motor Boat' - The ' Fast Motor Boats' were twin-screw,
had planing hulls and were fitted with with conventional rudder steering - The 'Slow Motor
Boats' were more like the old steam picket boats, with a fixed cabin fore and aft and a central,
midships, steering position and, like the 36-foot 'pinnaces' had the 'double-wheel' form of
Kitchen gear wheels - The 'Slow Motor Boats' were double diagonally built, single screw and
fitted generally, like the others it seems, with Dorman diesel engines.

The standard power boat carried by every destroyer, frigate etc., was the 25-foot 'motor
cutter', these fitted with two removable canopies, a 2-cylinder Dorman engine, reversing
gear box and ordinary tiller steering.

Three classes of sailing / pulling boats continued in use throughout the 1950's, the 32-foot
sailing/pulling cutter, transom sterned and clinker-built, it fitted to allow double-banked oars
and given a single dipping lug-sail; the 30-foot gigs, with narrow-transom sterns, carvel built,
but only given a single bank of oars and fitted with a double-standing lug-sail rig and the 27-
foot 'Montagu' whalers, clinker built, single-banked and having a pointed stern and yawl
sailing rig.

Though not described in every edition of The Admiralty Manual of Seamanship, note of the
"Kitchen Rudder" appears in, at least, the 1951 edition and on page 309 of the 1981 edition.

Though the perceived wisdom of the navy generally taught that, as powered boats could not
be relied upon to start when you wanted them, only sailing / pulling boats should be used as
regular stand-by 'sea-boat', HMS "Illustrious" preferred to use one of her 35 foot 'motor
cutters' as a sea-boat, her engine started at least once a watch and always going first time,
the engine able to run at idling speed, without cooling water, for long enough to get the sea-
boat lowered and slipped from her davit falls.

With the "Kitchen Rudder" system, there is no need to touch the engine throttle to change the
boat's speed or change from 'ahead' to astern' and, once the boat's engine speed and load is
set and fixed, one hand, usually the left, grips the tiller, or ordinary steering wheel and
moves it in the ordinary way, from side to side, as needed for steering, the other hand,
usually the right, is then kept in close proximity with the left hand and rotates the hand
wheel, operating the 'clamshell' cones, to control the boat's speed and direction and, as
explained, the operating wheel, controlling the propeller wash with the buckets - ahead,
astern, 'neutral' and in between and the actual direction of the propeller wash, to turn to port
or starboard etc., the boat's course further adjustable by use of the boat's tiller or ordinary
steering wheel and the engine always run at constant revolutions when manoeuvring, all the
acceleration/deceleration effected by the operation of the 'clamshell' buckets, it takes
practice to learn how to manipulate the rudder's controls and it takes even more practice to
achieve any proper level of competence.

By the mid-1960's, only the navy's aircraft carriers were big enough to carry a full
complement of the older types of boats, not least those with 'Kitchen' gear and it was around
that time that some were supplied with new, GRP-hulled, 40+ feet long 'workboats' fitted,
yet again, with 'Kitchen' gear, some of the larger 'Fleet Auxiliaries' also similarly supplied and
Belfast Harbour Commissioners, in 1966, following suit, as highlighted in "Kitchen Rudders
Going Full Circle", which can be found online on scribd.com at
http://www.scribd.com/doc/22236032/Kitchen-Rudders-Going-Full-Circle and commissioning a
40-foot long GRP-hulled Keith Nelson launch, fitted with "Kitchen Rudder" gear, to act as their
dock survey boat.

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Looking at the U.S.patents, one finds two later patents to Kitchen's original, 1916,
application, No 1,186,210 - Patent No 2,155,112, for Anderson's outboard engine add-on,
which uses Kitchen's clam-shells to effect neutral/reverse and Patent No 4,895,093, for
Dalsbo's 'improved Kitchen Rudder', which is shaped to create a rear-facing jet-like orifice.

Whereas Kitchen shows a propellor just inside the leading edge of the clam-shells, but forward
of the pivot point, Dalsbo locates his propellor to 'more-or-less' coincide with the pivot point
and Anderson's propellor located well in front of the shells with a substantial gap between the
propellor and the clam-shells, Kitchen relying on the gap between propellor and the clamshell
buckets 'opening up' as water begins to be deflected backwards and Dalsbo, in contrast, re-
directing water backwards, via a 'duct', below the propellor, so the gap stays the same,
Anderson's outboard engine 'Kitchen' gear add-on, just that and probably less effective than
the other two in practice.

Photographs of an adapted Evinrude outboard can be found in "Kitchen Rudders Going Full
Circle",
on scribd.com at http://www.scribd.com/doc/22236032/Kitchen-Rudders-Going-Full-Circle

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The last of The Royal Navy boats to use 'Kitchen Gear' were phased out in the 1970's and it
was therefore something of a surprise when one of them, one of the navy's 'Slow Motor
Boats', complete with its original gear, after some thirty years on The Firth of Forth, made its
way across Scotland by road and appeared in Kintyre in the early summer of 2008, the boat's
new owner, whilst not interfering with the hull, proposing to convert the accommodation
space into 'an office' !

The Royal Navy's 'Slow Motor Boats' were 'double diagonally' built, with a fixed cabin fore and
aft and a central, midships, steering position and the boat here originally, in all likelihood,
fitted with a Dorman diesel engine, but now fitted with a Gardner diesel, her 'double-wheel'
form of 'Kitchen' gear wheels, fitted in her midships cockpit now disconnected and dismantled
but, still stored aboard her.

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Looking aft, from the port side

Looking through the stern opening aperture, from port to starboard,


but at a slight angle, to reveal the propellor

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Looking through the stern opening aperture, from port to starboard

Looking forward, from the stern, to show the assembly detail of the 'clam shells'

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Looking forward, to show the inside detail of the port side 'clam shell' assembly

The outside of the starboard 'clam shell' bucket

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Looking inside the assembly, from starboard to port, to show the propellor
clearance
between blades and the lower pivot point on the 'rudder stock' of the assembly

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A final look at the assembly, from starboard to port

KLM Fokker 70 with 'reverse thrust' applied

While not strictly "Kitchen Rudder" technology, the "clamshell" thrust reverser on some
aircraft jet engines is an aeronautical derivative of Kitchen's invention, the two surfaces
behind the engine, the 'clam shells', seen in the deployed position, diverting the engine
exhaust gases and hence the thrust, forwards, the position of the aircraft's 'clam shells'
corresponding 'near-exactly' to the "Kitchen Rudder" 'clam shells' in their 'Full Astern' position
and some modern types of pumps and water-jet drives yet further derivative's of Kitchen's
designs.

The largest versions of "Kitchen Rudder" gear are reported to have been fitted to some
Mississippi River 'pusher' barge tugs, these understood still to have been in the service in the
1990's but, somewhat disappointly, nobody now seems to reported anything about their
service, or indeed their fate(s).

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In fairly recent time, an enterprising canal narrow-boat owner has salvaged the 'Kitchen' gear
from an ex-Royal Navy 25-foot 'motor cutter' and fitted it to his newly-built boat - It will be
interesting to note if there are any difficulties with it, for the drawback of the 'Kitchen' gear
was that it 'fouled' easily with weeds, canals not perhaps the best of environments for such an
arrangement, though a least the water is shallower for anyone having to go over the side to
clear the gear.

Though there are no known film clips of any Admiralty or indeed other boats fitted with
"Kitchen Rudders" in action, in 2008, a Scottish instrument maker took a 1/12th scale hull
model, intended for a model of a standard 50-foot long Royal Navy 'steam picket boat' and
fitted it with a steam plant and "Kitchen Rudders".

There is a short three minute long video showing the workings of the steam plant and rudders
during a bench test at - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WE02jxgGknc and a near two
minute long video showing the model, though like most models running somewhat faster than
scaled, both circling in its own length AND 'putting the brakes on' and stopping 'near dead'
from full speed also online on You Tube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gScrg-
zNpTU&feature=channel

No doubt Kitchen would be much amused by the video, for he and Storey were at the fore-
front of controlling boats by radio and, if one remembers, had fitted radio controls to a 30-
foot long launch, the "Bat", on Lake Windermere a full century ago, in 1904.

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In August 2009, a 'Model Boats' magazine online article, 'Focus On Scale', noted that The
Stirling Engine Society, demonstrating a range of 'hot-air' engines at The South West Model
Engineering, Model Making and Hobbies Exhibition, at The Royal Bath and West Showground
in Shepton Mallet, Somerset, had a rather sorry looking and uncompleted boat, fitted with
"Kitchen Rudders", on one side of the stand.

The photograph here shows the operating servos; the smaller blue servo controlling the
opening and closing of the plates giving forward and reverse and the black servo, on the right,
with the extended arm, controlling the directional, port and starboard, movement.

As in the case of a full-sized boat fitted with 'Kitchen' gear, the model allowed a non-reversing
engine to be used, the two plates in the open position allowing the thrust from the propeller
to be unimpeded and the model moving forward, the plates closed together behind the
propeller, the wash being deflected towards the front of the boat and the boat then moving
astern, the plates moved into the 'neutral' position, with forward thrust and reverse thrust
then becoming equal, the boat then stopped and remaining motionless in the water.

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Almost 'surreally', the February 1958 edition of the 'Model Maker' magazine came up with the
idea of matching up a set of "Kitchen Rudders" to a Clyde 'puffer', the name 'Maggie' chosen
to celebrate the 1954-produced film of the same name, it featuring two Clyde 'puffers', the
'Boer' and the 'Inca'.

Also, listed amongst John Lambert's model boat plans http://www.lambert-


plans.com/encom/ships_fast_boats.htm is a set for a 25-foot Admiralty 'motor cutter' (L/S/93)
which gives fully detailed general arrangement drawings, though no hull lines, but, includes
details of "Kitchen Rudder" gear and includes some history, the scale of the drawings ½" : 1
foot and, coming 'full circle', more drawings and detail etc. can be found in the earlier
document, "Kitchen Rudders Going Full Circle", which can be found online on scribd.com
at http://www.scribd.com/doc/22236032/Kitchen-Rudders-Going-Full-Circle it, read with the
document here, may provide a good engineer sufficient information to construct, or
reconstruct, a full-sized, or model, set of 'Kitchen' gear which, with practice in its use, will
absolutely amaze onlookers more used to watching the, often 'hapless', boat-handling skills
of those using more conventional propulsion units.

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