National Fisherman


Repower saves big on fuel bill; Fairhaven's first steel scalloper

At the end of this winter, Finestkind Boatyard in Harpswell, Maine, completed a repowering job for local lobsterman Robert Graves. Graves' Holland 38-foot was built in 1986 with a 550-hp Detroit Diesel 6V-92. This is the type of fuel-guzzling, oil-leaking, and air-polluting iron that the Maine Department of Environmental Protection was looking to replace with its Maine Clean Marine Engine Initiative.

Graves got a 503-hp Caterpillar C9, and the DEP, using stimulus money funneled to the state of Maine through the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act, paid for 50 percent of the cost of the engine and 50 percent of the approved work to install it.

Some work the state covered, and some it didn't. For instance, the cost of removing the winter back was approved because that was the only way to get the old engine out and the new one in. But switching from powering the pot hauler off the front of the engine to the direct drive off the transmission wasn't covered.

Exhaust modifications were covered, as was removing the original wooden engine mounts and replacing them.

Both Graves and Finestkind Boatyard had to go through a lot of paperwork to get the job approved and completed. But Finestkind Boatyard's Mark Hubbard says it wasn't unexpected, even though the job was completed in March and he wasn't paid by the state until the first week in July.

Hubbard says Graves couldn't be happier with the new engine. "He's got a brand new engine. He's using one-third less fuel than he was using, and has a little more speed, even though it's a smaller engine."

Detroits are notorious for leaking oil, and Graves, who Hubbard says was "constantly battling" the leaks, doesn't have that worry now. "You can eat off the bilge," he claims.

If for some reason you want parts for a 92 Detroit, Hubbard has some to sell you. He was required to drill a hole through the engine block and the manifolds, but the parts are available.

In Fairhaven, Mass., Fairhaven Shipyard is doing something that, strange as it may seem, hasn't been done before. At its north yard, the old D.N. Kelley & Son boatyard, Fairhaven Shipyard laid the keel for the first steel scalloper to be built in Fairhaven.

If you talk about ports for scallop fleets on the East Coast, New Bedford has to be the first name that comes to mind. And with Fairhaven about one-eighth of a mile away, across the Acushnet River, you would think a lot of scallopers would have been built in its boatyards.

"But as near as we can say, there haven't been any steel scallopers built in this port," says Fairhaven Shipyard's Kevin McLaughlin. And he doesn't think any have been built in New Bedford.

In Fairhaven, McLaughlin says the old Casey Boatworks built wooden scallopers in, he thinks, the 1940s and '50s but not steel scallopers.

When Fairhaven Shipyard launches the 95' x 28' Concordia for Malvin Kvilhaug next April, the town of Fairhaven will be able to say steel scallopers have been built there. Though the local residents will have an inkling that something is happening when the computer-cut and primed steel plating and framing starts arriving on flatbed trucks.

Farrell & Norton Naval Architects, with offices in Newcastle, Maine, and Fairhaven, designed the new boat. She will be a pretty standard scalloper, says the design team's Garrett Norton.

A pair of winches will be on the upper deck. And for power there will be a C18 Caterpillar that delivers 1,100 hp at 1,600 rpm hooked up to a Reintjes marine gear with a 5.947:1 reduction.

Auxiliary power will come from two 65-kW Northern Lights gensets and one 28-kW Northern Lights generator.

The hull has a double chine. "That's a much more efficient hull form than a single chine," Norton says. "It approximates a round-bilge boat, which is more efficient, as there is less resistance going through the water." Though with more pieces and more setup time, it takes longer to build a double-chine hull.

Kvilhaug's new boat will replace an eastern-rigged scalloper of the same name built in the 1950s. — Michael Crowley


Wash. longliner goes wide; Time Bandit turns vegetarian

Bud Hoy has taken his show on the road. Hoy's Alaskan Anvil (formerly Hoy's Marine) is now sponsoning the 57-foot Trident in Port Townsend, Wash. When that job is completed he'll head to Kodiak, Alaska, to work on a dragger.

When the house-aft Trident was hauled out, she measured 57' 10 3/4" x 16'. When the longliner goes back in the water in August, that beam will have been pushed out to 29' 5". She'll also have a new bow, a rebuilt wheelhouse, a processing line for cod, an enclosed deck — except for an open hauling station — and be able to pack 150,000 pounds of frozen product.

The Trident's owner, Mike Lang, picked up the processing equipment, including three plate freezers and a 125-hp compressor off the Western Queen, a boat that was sold to new owners in South America, Hoy says.

To get the space for the processing equipment, Hoy says, "We cut all the bulwarks off and built new framing from the sides out, put a deck on and then came up to the front of the boat and built a new front end."

The bow was removed from about 14 feet back from the stem and then down to the lower chine. Leaving the bow on would have made the sponsoning work difficult and expensive, and Hoy notes, it was ugly.

Previously the boat's length was cut back from 63 feet to fit it into a permit. "The bow had been beaten up pretty bad when it was shortened up," Hoy says. Part of the rebuilding work called for a new bulbous bow, which will be used to store fresh water.

To give the boat the stability necessary to carry a processing line and the crew to work it, Hoy is building a gull-wing chine into the hull.

"The gull wing gives it an anti-roll kind of bottom," he notes. "We went under the old chine about 18 inches and then back in. Now the bottom starts way out by the rudder post and comes out," where it's 6 feet wide.

While Hoy was reworking the hull, the Trident's skipper, Jake Sharp, was in charge of widening and rebuilding the aluminum wheelhouse.

The project to make the 113-foot crabber Time Bandit the environmental standard for "green" fishing boats is moving slowly forward. The Time Bandit, familiar to "Deadliest Catch" fans, was due to be hauled to have some of the work done this spring. But that was postponed to possibly September, when the crabber will be coming down to Seattle.

SeaLand Environmental out of Bradenton, Fla., is heading up the project, and in January the company's Jeff Steele went to Dutch Harbor, Alaska, to do work that didn't require hauling the boat.

SeaLand Environmental's hydrogen-assist HydroMarine system went on the two main engines and two genset engines. HydroMarine puts hydrogen gas into the engine cylinders to improve combustion, reduce emissions by 70 percent and improve fuel consumption by 22 percent.

The boat's hydraulic system was switched from a petroleum-based oil to a vegetable-based oil. It also uses vegetable-based greases. Vegetable-based oils, Steele notes, are starting to get a lot of attention because if "they are spilled overboard there's no consequences, no fines." And the oil has better operating characteristics than regular hydraulic fluid. "It's something that the petroleum industry doesn't want you to know."

The owners of the Time Bandit undoubtedly wish the work had been done sooner. Steele says a year ago "the Time Bandit spilled two quarts of hydraulic oil in Homer basin. The Coast Guard fined them $13,000." In contrast, if vegetable-based hydraulic oil goes in the water, it leaves no oil sheen and is biodegradable.

After flushing out the hydraulic lines and pumps, the Time Bandit took about 14 drums of SeaLand Environmental's HydroFluid, a vegetable-based hydraulic fluid. Steele's crew also put an oil-refining system on all the Time Bandit's engines. "Now they won't have to change the oil until the laboratory tells them to. In some cases they might not change the oil again," Steele says.

The system removes contaminants such as diesel fuel from the oil and eliminates moisture problems. — Michael Crowley


Oil spill slows boatyard work; crabber has a double-skiff job

BP's runaway oil well at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico is touching the lives of just about everyone living and working along the gulf. Boatyards are no exception.

Tim Jemison of Jemison Marine & Shipbuilding in Bayou La Batre, Ala., is building a 93-foot scalloper for a Cape May, N.J., owner, but mostly Jemison talks about the oil spill.

"The oil spill has stopped all of my repair work," he says. "We normally average eight to 10 hauls per month. Last month we hauled one boat for repair, and so far this month we hauled only one for an emergency, and it went right back in the water."

Jemison says if fishermen can't fish they will not be bringing their boats into his yard or anyone else's to be hauled. "It does not look good for our seafood business and for repair work," he says.

Ray La Force of Raymond and Associates in Bayou La Batre, Ala., usually has 15 trawlers on the shore waiting for repair work. "I've got none right now and nobody knows what to do," says La Force. "If fisherman can't fish, they are not going to put any money in their boats."

Fortunately, La Force is building a 90-foot scalloper for Warren Alexander of Atlantic Shellfish in Cape May. It's the fifth boat he's done for Atlantic Shellfish. Raymond and Associates is also building several tugs for pushing barges.

In Chesapeake Bay, waterman Robert Rowe of Moon, Va., is working on a 42-foot boat he recently bought, the Ella K. Built in 1986, the boat is hauled out at Holiday Marina in Achilles, Va., where Rowe is doing his own work.

He has sanded the hull prior to painting her. Portions of four bulkheads will be replaced with 4" x 6" salt-treated wood, and a new salt-treated worm shoe will go over the keel. Another change will be the name. She'll become the Donna Renée, which is the name of Rowe's wife.

He fishes 400 eel pots in the spring and fall, haul seines for finfish in the summer; and dredges for oysters in cold-weather month.

Holiday Marina caters mostly to commercial fishermen and is a major influence in keeping the wooden boat fleet on Virginia's lower western shore alive and well.

An update: In May, George Butler of Reedville Marine Railway completed a 23' x 8' wooden deadrise crab skiff for crabber Ed Payne of Urbanna, Va., which was mentioned in "Yard builds three scallopers" (NF, April '10 p. 54).

Butler strip-planked the sides and cross-planked the bottom with juniper. The stem, sternpost and frames are shaped from white oak. The fir keel is made from a 6" x 8" plank, and two fir sister keelsons were installed to stiffen the hull.

The skiff works great in the Rappahannock River and most creeks Payne fishes in. The wooden boat was supposed to replace Payne's old fiberglass skiff but on occasion, he still has to use his shallow-draft fiberglass skiff.

The wooden skiff doesn't draw but 6 to 8 inches light, but the 10-hp Suzuki outboard on the stern pushes it down to a little over a foot.

Payne works his skiff out of Robinson Creek, a deepwater creek, but he cleans and maintains his pots at his home on Perkins Creek, a small tributary of the Rappahannock River too shallow for his wooden skiff except at high tide.

"Well, I guess I didn't figure on my new boat being too deep for my dock and cleanup area," says Payne. "When my pots started getting dirty, I pulled the hauler off the wooden skiff and put it on the fiberglass skiff so I now work out of it until I get the pots cleaned and in the water."

When all of Payne's pots are back in the river, he says he is going back to his wooden skiff. "She's a lot smoother ride than my fiberglass skiff and she's a mighty pretty skiff," he says.

Sometimes it just takes two boats to get through a season. — Larry Chowning

Inside the Industry

The Center for Coastal Studies recently announced that Owen Nichols, Director of the Center for Coastal Studies’ Marine Fisheries Research Program, has been selected as this year’s recipient of the John Annala Fishery Leadership Award by the Gulf of Maine Research Institute. 

Read more ...

Cummins  announced the opening of a new Alaska service location on Kodiak Island last week that will serve as a service and support location for commercial marine applications.

Read more ...
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