Patrol Boat Riverine Banner
Patrol Boat Riverine PBR Panorama
Patrol Boat Riverine (PBR) from the Vietnam Era at the Submarine USS Ling Museum in Hackensack, NJ

Patrol Boat Riverine (PBR)

page 1 of 2 Next

01PatrolBoatRiverine 02PatrolBoatRiverine 03PBRSternView 04PBR50CAL
01 Patrol Boat Riverine 02 Patrol Boat Riverine Bow View 03 PBR Stern View 04 50CAL Browning Machine Gun
05PBRJacuzziJetDrive 06PBRJacuzziJetDrive 07PBRJacuzziJetDrive 08PBRJacuzziJetDrive
05 Jacuzzi Jet Drive 06 Jacuzzi Jet Drive 07 Jacuzzi Jet Drive 08 PBR Jacuzzi Jet Drive
09PBRJacuzziJetDrive 10SternNavLight 11PBRSign 12PatrolBoatRiverine
09 PBR Jacuzzi Jet Drive 10 Stern Nav Light 11 Spec Sheet Sign 12 Starboard Stern View

Patrol Boat Riverine (PBR)

The Patrol Boat Riverine is a shallow draft river attack craft. The BPR's specs are:

Length: 32 feet
Beam: 11 feet 8 inches
Draught: 2 feet
Crew: 5
Displacement: 18,000 pounds
Max Speed: 35 knots (38mph)
Fuel Capacity: 160 gallons of diesel fuel
 3 50 cal. Browning Machine Guns in two mounts
 1 7.62 machine gun
 1 30mm Grenade Launcher
Power Plant: 2 Detroit Diesel 220 Horsepower engines driving 2 Jacuzzi Jet Drives
Range: 400 miles

You can visit this Patrol Boat Riverine at the New Jersey Naval Museum in Hackensack, NJ. If you've seen the movie Apocalypse Now, this is the very same type of fiberglass craft used in the film. When you see it in person you can see how it could draw such a low draft as was needed in the shallow waterways of Vietnam and Cambodia. The units using the PBRs were often called The Brown Water Navy (and those rivers were pretty brown) and also Swift Boats (and at 30 Knots fully loaded they PBRs WERE pretty swift!).

The aft 50 Cal Browning machine gun is in place on this particular member of the Brown Water Navy, but the front mount has a couple of 2x4s under the cover. There should be clamshell thrust diverters on the Jet drives but these are missing. It looks like such a practical design that I'm surprised these boats are not still in the Navy's inventory today. The Jacuzzi Jet Drive is actually designed and manufactured by the same folks who brought us the Hot Tub. When the craft is cruising with the hull up on plane the Jacuzzi Jet Drive is out of the water improving its shallow draft. The propulsion is actually a result of the expulsion of the mass of water out of the jet drives.

Unfortunately you're not allowed on board the Patrol Boat Riverine at the New Jersey Naval Museum so I have no shots of the interior details.

Submarine USS Ling Main Page