Bumper boat

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In a bumper boat is a specially for a particular use - formerly made of wood, steel later - built hand Kahn with a diesel engine, which is mounted adjacent to the control surface at the rear of a non-powered barge and this pushes ahead.

History and function

The first push boats were used in the first half of the 20th century. For the first time, some owners of barges used push boats to move around in order to be independent of towing and towing costs. This made them self-propelled, but still with limited use; In particular, it was generally not possible to use it uphill (= against the current) on flowing waters.

At the beginning of their development in Germany, shock boats were also known as water-diesel tractors .

The push boat, similar to a dinghy and equipped with a diesel engine of around 10 to 50  hp , is placed against the stern of the barge and firmly moored there. With this type of propulsion, speeds of around 7 km / h are possible on canalised waters. The push boat is mostly operated by means of a rod with a pivot point at the end of the rudder blade and lines. The lines are used to accelerate and couple. There is no need to descend into the push boat as it is practically remote controlled.

A push boat can also be used for minor maneuvering and towing activities.

Use in the GDR

Due to a lack of towing and propulsion power in the period after the Second World War due to war losses and reparations payments, 55 new push boats with an engine output of 50 hp each were built in the area of ​​the former GDR in the period from 1954 to 1957 at at least five shipyards.



  • Dünner, Hans-Wilhelm; Knoll, Horst-Christin: 50 years of the German inland shipping company . - from an East German inland shipping company to a European logistics service provider. 1st edition. Koehlers Verlagsgesellschaft mbH, Hamburg 1999, ISBN 3-7822-0757-2 .
  • Schönknecht, Rolf; Gewiese, Armin: Inland shipping between Elbe and Oder . The other German shipping area 1945–1995. Busse Seewald / DSV-Verlag, Hamburg 1996, ISBN 978-3-88412-218-1 .

Web links

Commons : Bumper boats  - collection of images, videos and audio files
  • Uwe Giesler: Push boats. GDR inland navigation, accessed on January 19, 2016 .


  1. ^ Herbert Stertz: Havel shipping under steam . Economic factor and experience. Media @ Vice, Pritzwalk 2006, ISBN 3-00-019924-1 , p. 74
  2. ^ Shipbuilding Society (Ed.): 100 Years Shipbuilding Society: Ceremony from May 25th to 29th, 1999 in Berlin . Springer-Verlag, 2013, ISBN 3-642-93390-4 , pp. 130 .
  3. Dünner, Hans-Wilhelm; Knoll, Horst-Christin: 50 Years of the German Inland Shipping Company, Koehlers Verlagsgesellschaft mbH, p. 176