Doug Bussey sent me
some pictures of his Dumas Mister Darby. Doug states that,
"When I take my Mister
Darby out, it's a 2 to 3 hour cruise. The noodles
are around the tow rope to keep it out of the propellers.
for themselves in saving drive couplings."
Doug has included such added such features as a
separate control of
mast light, running lights, starboard red mast lights, center
white mast lights, port white mast lights, siren, horn and
flashing red light over the tow line. The tug can pull an
inflatable raft with no problem. It cruises at about 1/4
1/3 throttle so the speed controls do not overheat and gives an
actual speed of 1-2 mph. Doug has spent about 50
hours over the past years cursing around the downtown lake in
(Click on thumbnails to view larger pictures)
Doug uses a 35 AH gel cell for all power and to ballast
the tug. At full
without a load, the tug just about starts to plane. The
rear wave is
higher than the stern of the tug.
His Mister Darby uses 2 MAC 7117 speed controls connected
to 2 900 size
MAC gearboxes with 3 to 1 reduction. Doug is using modified
because the motor torque is strong enough to sheer the drive dogs in
seconds. Doug had to drill the sheered drive dogs and insert 1/16 in brass rods in for
pins. He found that this raises havoc with the couplings so
he had to place a 2 inch piece of
plastic hosing over the couplings and drive dogs and secure it
glue. This usually lasts 5 - 10 hours running.
(Model Marina note: I recommend he get some u joints from
Doug has a MCD Switch 16 on an Airtronics Vanguard surface radio to
options. Doug is now only using 8 of the 16 available channels so
far. The right
vertical stick has been changed with parts from Airtronics to be
throttle stick also.
The old guy, the Darby and a toy tug.
A picture of Doug running his Mister Darby.
Captain Doug & crew 014
This is the Darby ready to tow the inflatable.
Rear view of the Darby
This shows the hatch cover from Robbe used on their sub.
Makes a nice
finger hole to pull the decking away for access to the drives
Close view of the Port motor and drive.
Doug states that he is cheap by saying that.. "I use 'Bondo' to make motor mounts and to mount
motors". (I have used Bondo two part epoxy putty to
mount motors... work well) The wood in the background is the battery box.
Doug uses a 35 amp
hour gel cell that gives him about 2 hours of constant
cruising at 1-
2 mph or longer.
Motors and gear boxes
This picture also shows the bag of lead shot for ballasting the
rear of the boat. Bag of shot weights about a kilo, 2.2 lb..
The Robbe search light
This picture shows a Robbe search light converted to white LED.
Both are run off the 12 volt system with current limiting
resistors in series through the Switch 16.
21 channel radio
This shows an Airtronics Vanguard 600 converted to 21 channels.
the proportional channels (flaps) was wired into the MCD Switch
This gives me 5 + 16 channels. The 16 on/off channels can
be either toggle or momentary. The lights are set to toggle and one
push of the button turns on that light. The next push turns it off.
The horn and siren are momentary. Each channel is good for about 2 amps
but I don't go that high. There is a simple calibration procedure to
align the channels.
The Cabin shot
This is just a nice shot of the front deck and cabin of this
Darby Mast lights
This is a shot showing the port running light, top mast light and the
columns of lights on the mast. There are two lights out
because Doug is now
having too much fun cruising to rewire the mast. Actually
Doug tells me that the wires
are shorted out and burnt up.
The mast is brass tubing drilled to allow the 16 volt model
(from ebay) wires to run down inside the mast.
Doug dropped the Darby when it was water ready (65 lb.) about three feet onto
and broke a few things. The biggest loss was the small
turned the radar antenna. Doug tells me that he lost a tiny brush from the
motor. (Don't feels so bad Doug, my Darby was a
complete loss... I talked to Dave at
Harbor Models and he
can provide me a replacement hull and other needed items..
Thanks to Dave, I have a source of replacement parts when I'm
ready for this rebuild my Darby, but not quite yet.)
One motor full power
This is a shot of only the right motor at full power. I
sheared the drive dogs on the port motor. Note the prop
wash from the
Both motors, full power.
What an over powered Darby looks like under full power.
it up over a minute or the ESCs shut down from
Nice sunset shot
Just that. Tug looks really good on the water.
Last year's picture
Just a low starboard shot of the Mister Darby.
Mister Darby at cruise
This shows the Darby at about 1/3 to 1/2 throttle.
Doug sent me more pictures of his models:
you have any questions or tips you may need,
you can email Doug at: