Alexis Marine to retrofit towboat with Thordon bearings


(NEW ORLEANS) — Louisiana-based workboat operator Alexis Marine has awarded a supply contract to Thordon Bearings for the retrofitting of 6-inch-diameter RiverTough bearings to M/V Kristin Alexis, a 60-foot twin-screw towboat built by Bollinger Shipyard in 1969.

Both the vessel’s shafts will be withdrawn at New Orleans yard Bayou Fabricators and Machine Works, where the original rubber bearings will be replaced with Thordon’s RiverTough tailshaft bearings.

The polymer bearing manufacturer will also supply NiCrB sleeves to reduce the impact of operations in abrasive waters on the shafts.

“It is not our first experience with RiverTough; the bearings have provided trouble-free operation for our fleet of tow/push boats for several years," said Mike Alexis, CEO and founder of Alexis Marine. "We have had a very good experience with all of the installations.

“Due to the harsh waters in which these shallow-draft vessels operate, we found that with the original rubber bearings we were dry-docking once, sometimes twice a year. We have not had that problem with the Thordon system. Combined with the hard coated sleeves, there has been no sign of wear.”

“We expect the conversion next month will be a smooth process," said Jim Bright, business development manager USA for Thordon Bearings. "Bayou has a lot of experience with Thordon products and has installed RiverTough to a number of workboats, as retrofit and newbuild solutions.”

Alexis Marine operates its vessels as luggers on inland waterways, serving salt mines around Texas, Louisiana and the Yazoo-Mississippi delta.

By Professional Mariner Staff