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A ship's tender, usually referred to as a tender, is a
boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional properties. It m ...

boat
, or a larger ship, used to service or support other boats or
ship A ship is a large watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional propertie ...

ship
s. This is generally done by transporting people or supplies to and from shore or another ship. A second and distinctly different meaning for ''tender'' is small boats carried by larger vessels, to be used either as lifeboats, or as transport to shore, or both.


Tenders as smaller craft

For a variety of reasons, it is not always advisable to try to tie a ship up at a dock; the weather or the sea might be rough, the time might be short, or the ship too large to fit. In such cases tenders provide the link from ship to shore, and may have a very busy schedule of back-and-forth trips while the ship is in port. On
cruise ship Cruise ships are large passenger ship A passenger ship is a merchant ship whose primary function is to carry passengers on the sea. The category does not include cargo ship, cargo vessels which have accommodations for limited numbers of pas ...

cruise ship
s, lifeboat tenders do double duty, serving as tenders in day-to-day activities, but fully equipped to act as
lifeboat Lifeboat may refer to: Rescue vessels * Lifeboat (shipboard), a small craft aboard a ship to allow for emergency escape * Lifeboat (rescue), a boat designed for sea rescues * Airborne lifeboat, an air-dropped boat used to save downed airmen A ...
s in an emergency. They are generally carried on
davit file:Davits 2 (PSF).png, Boat suspended from radial davits; the boat is mechanically lowered file:Brosen lifeboats scandinavia.jpg, Gravity multi-pivot on cruiseferry ''MS Scandinavia (2003), Scandinavia'' file:Bossoir a gravité.jpg, Gravity Rolle ...
s just above the
promenade deck The promenade deck is a deck found on several types of passenger ship A passenger ship is a merchant ship whose primary function is to carry passengers on the sea. The category does not include cargo ship, cargo vessels which have accommoda ...
, and may at first glance appear to be regular lifeboats; but they are usually larger and better-equipped. Current lifeboat tender designs favor
catamaran A Formula 16 beachable catamaran Powered catamaran passenger ferry at Salem, Massachusetts, United States A catamaran () (informally, a "cat") is a multi-hulled watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, a ...

catamaran
models, since they are less likely to roll in the calm to moderate conditions in which tenders are usually used. They typically carry up to 100 to 150 passengers and two to three crew members. Before these ships were mass-produced, the main way to board a larger ship (mainly ocean liners) was to board a passenger tender. Passenger tenders remained based at their ports of registry, and when a ship came through the area, the tender would tie up with the ship and embark passengers on an elevated walkway. These vessels were larger, had a greater passenger capacity, and a broader sense of individuality in their respective companies than the more modern tenders seen today. Because of their increased size, lifeboats and life preservers were commonplace on board these ships (with two boats being the standard amount for an average tender).


Naval tenders for warships and submarines

Before the technologies that allow submarines and destroyers to operate independently matured by the latter half of the 20th century (and significantly during the
Second World War World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
), they were heavily dependent upon tenders to perform most maintenance and supply. Their
hull classification symbol The United States Navy, United States Coast Guard, and United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) use a hull classification symbol (sometimes called hull code or hull number) to identify their ships by type and by indi ...
s in the US Navy were, respectively, AS and AD, while general repair ships were AR. Naval tenders fell out of use during the late 20th century, as the speed and range of warships increased (reducing the need for advanced basing). By the end of the 20th century, all of the tenders in the U.S. Navy had been inactivated except for two
submarine tender A submarine tender is a type of depot shipA depot ship is an auxiliary ship used as a mobile or fixed base for submarines, destroyers, minesweepers, fast attack craft, landing craft, or other small ships with similarly limited space for maintenan ...
s. As a result of the settlement of lawsuits over the
Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet The Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet is located on the northwest side of Suisun Bay (the northern portion of the greater San Francisco Bay estuary). The fleet is within a regulated navigation area that is about long and wide. It begins just north of th ...
, the U.S. Navy and
MARAD Marad (Sumerian: Marda, modern Tell Wannat es-Sadum or Tell as-Sadoum, Iraq Iraq ( ar, الْعِرَاق, translit=al-ʿIrāq; ku, عێراق, translit=Êraq), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُورِيَّة ٱلْع ...
are engaged in an aggressive disposal program that will scrap all of those ships by 2017. While the Navy's plans for tenders held in reserve in other places (such as inactivated submarine tenders and held at Inactive Ships, St. Juliens Creek Annex) were not addressed in that lawsuit, since its settlement, the Navy has indicated its desire to dispose of such ships as soon as possible. Apparently not completely willing to wean itself from tenders all together – but with an eye towards reducing costs – the last two tenders remaining in active service have now been operationally turned over to the Military Sealift Command. s and are now manned and operated by a "hybrid" crew. The
commanding officer The commanding officer (CO) or sometimes, if the incumbent is a general officer A general officer is an Officer (armed forces), officer of highest military ranks, high rank in the army, armies, and in some nations' air forces, space forces, ...

commanding officer
and a approximately 200 technicians are Navy personnel, while the operation of the ship itself is performed by
merchant mariners
merchant mariners
. Prior to the turn-over, both ships had more than 1000 sailors. While at this time the ships still bear the AS classification, both ship's primary mission has been expanded well beyond submarines to include service and support of any Naval vessel in their operational area. Under the traditional Navy classification, both ships should be reclassified as AR (Auxiliary Repair), however since now operated by the MSC it is doubtful such a reassignment will occur. ''Emory S. Land'' is forward deployed in the Indian Ocean at
Diego Garcia Diego Garcia is an island of the British Indian Ocean Territory, an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. It is a militarized atoll just south of the equator in the central Indian Ocean, and the largest of 60 small islands comprising the ...
while ''Frank Cable'' is forward-deployed in the Pacific at Polaris Point, Apra Harbor, Guam. Such forward deployments are to provide service and support at the very great distances of the Western Pacific. Two tenders, and , were built for the
White Star Line The Oceanic Steam Navigation Company, more commonly known as the White Star Line (WSL), was a British shipping company. Founded out of the remains of a defunct packet company, it gradually rose up to become one of the most prominent shipping ...
by
Harland and Wolff Harland & Wolff is a shipyard A shipyard (also called a dockyard) is a place where are and repaired. These can be s, military vessels, s or other cargo or passenger ships. Dockyards are sometimes more associated with maintenance and b ...
to serve the liners and at
Cherbourg
Cherbourg
. ''Nomadic'' survives as a museum ship, and is the last remaining vessel built for the White Star Line in existence.


Other types of tenders

* Armed tender, 19th century British supply or transport ships that were outfitted and commissioned for military use in the Naval Service. *
Buoy tender A buoy tender is a type of boat, vessel used to maintain and replace navigational buoys. This term can also apply to an actual person who does this work. The United States Coast Guard uses buoy tenders to accomplish one of its primary missions of ...
, used to maintain
navigational aid A navigational aid (NAVAID), also known as aid to navigation (ATON), is any sort of signal, markers or guidance equipment which aids the traveler in navigation Navigation is a field of study that focuses on the process of monitoring and contr ...
s. *
Cannery tender A cannery tender was a type of commercial fishing vessel operated by Salmon cannery, salmon canneries in the early to mid- 20th century. Most commonly used in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska, cannery tenders transported fish from cannery-owned f ...
, a type of commercial
fishing vessel A fishing vessel is a boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural ...

fishing vessel
of the first half of the 20th century used to set up and maintain
fish trap A fish trap is a trap A trap is a Trapping#Trap_types, mechanical device used to capture or restrain an animal for purposes such as hunting, pest control, or ecological research. Trap or TRAP may also refer to: Art and entertainment Films a ...
s, transport fish from the traps to salmon canneries, patrol to prevent theft of fish from the traps, and transport personnel and supplies for salmon canneries. *
Chase boat A ship's tender, usually referred to as a tender, is a boat, or a larger ship, used to service or support other boats or ships. This is generally done by transporting people or supplies to and from shore or another ship. A second and distinct ...
, a tender generally not carried by the main vessel. It may be towed, travel under its own power, or be stationed in port. *
Destroyer tender A destroyer tender or destroyer depot ship is a type of depot shipA depot ship is an auxiliary ship used as a mobile or fixed base for submarines, destroyers, minesweepers, fast attack craft, landing craft, or other small ships with similarly lim ...
, a large ship used to support a flotilla of destroyers or other small warships. *
Dive tender A diving support vessel is a ship that is used as a floating base for professional diving projects. History Commercial diving support vessels emerged during the 1960s and 1970s, when the need arose for Commercial offshore diving, offshore diving ...
, a ship or boat used to support the actions of divers. Also known as a diving support vessel. * Fish tender, a vessel that commercially supplies, stores, refrigerates, or transports fish, fish products, or materials directly related to fishing or the preparation of fish to or from a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel or a fish processing facility.uslegal.com Fish Tender Vessel Law and Legal Definition Retrieved December 5, 2018
/ref> *
Lighthouse tender A lighthouse tender is a ship specifically designed to maintain, support, or tend to lighthouses or lightvessels, providing supplies, fuel, mail, and transportation. In the United States, these ships originally served as part of the United St ...
, used to tend lighthouses, lightvessels, and, later,
buoy A buoy (, North America more commonly, but not exclusively ) is a Buoyancy, floating device that can have many purposes. It can be anchored (stationary) or allowed to drift with ocean currents. The etymology of the word is disputed. Types Na ...

buoy
s. * Mail tender, a small tender used to speed the delivery of mail from large liners *
Motor torpedo boat tender Motor torpedo boat tender is a type of ship used by the U.S. Navy during World War II and Vietnam War. The motor torpedo boat tender's task was to act as a tender in remote areas for patrol boats (PT-boats) and to provide the necessary fuel and p ...
, a mobile base and supply ship used to support motor torpedo boats on operations during World War II. * Pribilof tender, a term used for
United States Government The federal government of the United States (U.S. federal government or U.S. government) is the national government of the United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or U ...
-owned and -operated
cargo liner A cargo liner, also known as a passenger-cargo ship or passenger-cargoman, is a type of merchant ship A merchant ship, merchant vessel, trading vessel, or merchantman is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne ves ...
s that provided transportation to, from, and between the
Pribilof Islands Image:PribilofIslands.jpg, Map of the Pribilof Islands The Pribilof Islands (formerly the Northern Fur Seal Islands; russian: Острова Прибылова) are a group of four volcanic islands off the coast of mainland Alaska, in the Bering ...
from 1917 to 1975 *
Seaplane tender A seaplane tender is a boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural ...
, either a ship carrying multiple seaplanes, also known as a seaplane carrier, and considered to be a predecessor to the aircraft carrier; or a small craft used to support the operations of flying boats. *
Submarine tender A submarine tender is a type of depot shipA depot ship is an auxiliary ship used as a mobile or fixed base for submarines, destroyers, minesweepers, fast attack craft, landing craft, or other small ships with similarly limited space for maintenan ...
, a large ship used to support a flotilla of submarines. *
Torpedo boat tender The torpedo boat tender was a type of warship developed at the end of the 19th century to help bring small torpedo boats to the high seas, and launch them for attack. During the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878), Turko-Russian war in 1877, the Ru ...
, a ship used during the late 19th and early 20th centuries to carry torpedo boats to sea and deploy them against enemy ships *
Yacht tender A yacht tender is a vessel used for servicing and providing support and entertainment to a private or charter yacht. They include utilitarian craft, powered by oar or outboard motor, and high-speed luxury craft, supporting superyachts, powered by ...
, a craft that services an anchored or moored
yacht A yacht is a sailing or power vessel used for pleasure, cruising, or racing. There is no standard definition, so the term applies to such vessels that have a cabin with amenities that accommodate overnight use. To be termed a , as opposed to a ...

yacht


See also

*
Bumboat A bumboat is a small boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and ...


References

{{ModernMerchantShipTypes, state=collapsed Boat types Tender