Tug & Towboat roundup


Baydelta Maritime LLC, of San Francisco, contracted in August 2013 with Nichols Bros. of Freeland, Wash., for a new 100-by-40-foot z-drive tractor tug. Delta Audrey will be the ninth Delta-class tug Nichols has built, six of them for Baydelta Maritime.

The tug is ABS load line certified and powered by twin Caterpillar 3516C marine diesel engines with a combined horsepower of 6,800. Each engine is mated to a Rolls-Royce US 255 FP z-drive system. The propulsion package will produce a bollard pull of more than 90 tons.

The tug is also equipped with two C6.6 Caterpillar generators. The tug is fitted with two Markey winches (a hawser winch in the bow and a towing winch aft), Smith Berger towing  pins, and SSR Marine fenders.

Harley Marine z-drive

Brian Gauvin

The 100-foot Ahbra Franco named for the daughter of Harley Marine Services founder Harley Franco, performs ship-assist and escort duties in the ports of Oakland and San Francisco for HMS subsidiary Starlight Marine Services.

Harley Marine Services of Seattle took delivery in August 2013 of the z-drive Ahbra Franco from Nichols Bros. Designed by Jensen Maritime, Ahbra Franco is the eighth in this Nichols/Jensen series.

Ahbra Franco is powered by two Caterpillar C-175 Tier 3 engines with a total of  6,890 hp at 1,800 rpm. The engines are coupled with Rolls-Royce US 255 FP z-drives turning four-blade fixed-pitch propellers.

Deck machinery includes a Markey ship-assist bow winch and a Markey tow winch with 2,600 feet of 2.25-inch wire. Fendering is from Schuyler and Shibata.

Kirby acquires ATBs to carry coal

Kirby Ocean Transport has acquired two new articulated tug-barge units for transporting coal from Louisiana to Florida.

The 125-foot Jason E. Duttinger is paired with the barge Winna Wilson. Captain Donald Lowe Sr. is paired with the barge Margo Dale. When coupled, the tugs and their barges are more than 600 feet in length.

Both the ATBs were built by Signal International in Orange, Texas. The designer was Ocean Tug & Barge Engineering.

The 6,000-hp tugs are powered by twin EMD 12-710G7C-TC diesels.

Maine yard delivers a Seabulk tug

Washburn & Doughty Associates of East Boothbay, Maine, delivered Seabulk Apollo in August 2013.

Apollo is the second 93-foot ASD tug built by Washburn & Doughty for Seabulk. The new tug’s near twin Athena was launched in March 2013. Both were designed by Bruce Washburn, one of the yard’s founders.

Apollo has a beam of 38 feet and a maximum draft of 17 feet. It has a blunt bow for pushing and substantial beam for stability.

For propulsion Seabulk chose twin Caterpillar 3516B marine diesels with a rating of 2,682 hp at 1,600 rpm. The Cats have a smaller footprint than engines of similar power, resulting in greater accessibility when they are serviced. The engines drive nibral propellers through Schottel z-drives.

There is a JonRie model 220 double-drum hawser winch on the bow with an automatic tension control feature. The towing winch is a single-drum JonRie. Bollard pull is approximately 68 tons.

Vane Brothers gets two ocean boats

Chesapeake Shipbuilding Corp. of Salisbury, Md., is building two oceangoing tugs for Vane Brothers of Baltimore, the ninth and 10th boats that Vane has ordered from the yard in recent years.

The two tugs share the same layout and were designed by Frank Basile of Entech & Associates in Houma, La. The first of the two Sassafras-class tugs, Red Hook, is the seventh in the class built for Vane Brothers.

The tugs measure 94 feet overall with a 32-foot beam and a 13-foot draft.

Both tugs feature twin Caterpillar main engines producing a combined 3,000 hp. Deck gear includes a JonRie towing winch and a JonRie capstan.

Signet building a 2,400-hp ASD tug

“Less is more” applies to Signet Vigilant, a 72-foot, 2,400-hp ASD tug under construction at Signet Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Miss. Vigilant is expected to be delivered to Signet Maritime early this summer. With a bollard pull of 30 metric tons, Vigilant is an anomaly in an age of high-powered tugs.

Signet Vigilant will perform rig escort, ship and barge assist work at Signet’s International Operations Center at Ingleside, Texas.

“We have the Signet Volunteer in our fleet at Ingleside,” said Joe Dahl, general manager of Signet’s shipyard. Volunteer, formerly the 70-foot Belle Watling, a Cummins powered z-drive tug contracted for Dixie Towing of Jacksonville, Fla., was built at Horizon Shipbuilding in Bayou La Batre, Ala., in 2001 (American Tugboat Review 2001).

“We bought her from Dixie Towing,” said Dahl. “She’s a shallow draft, 1,000-hp boat, and a real handy little tug for our operation over in Ingleside,” said Dahl. “We were always impressed with her, but she was a little light in horsepower, so we jumped the horsepower for the Vigilant.”

The propulsion on Signet Vigilant comes from two MTU 8V-4000 M54 Tier 3 mains rated at 1,200-hp each at 1,800 rpm driving Rolls-Royce US 155 P12-FP z-drives. On deck is a Markey DEPC-32 20-hp bow winch. On the stern are two Patterson WWP40E 40-ton facing winches.

Leevac delivers Robert Allan escort tugs

Leevac Shipyards of Jennings, La., delivered two escort tugs designed by Robert Allan Ltd. of Vancouver, British Columbia. The first tug, Chloe K, was delivered to Bay-Houston Towing in September 2013; the second, Zeus, was delivered to Suderman & Young in December. Both companies are based in Houston.

Chloe K was constructed at Leevac’s Jennings shipyard and was later transported via one of Leevac’s own dry docks to Leevac’s Lake Charles facility, where Chloe K received final outfitting.

The tugs are 80 by 38 feet with a working draft of 16 feet and will work out of the ports of Houston and Galveston. Designated as Z-Tech 2400-class terminal/escort tugs, they are powered by two Caterpillar 3516C HD engines, delivering 2,575 hp each. The Caterpillar engines are mated to Schottel SRP-1215 drives, driving 94-inch stainless steel propellers. The vessels are designed to produce 60 metric tons of bollard pull.

Reinauer takes delivery of two ATBs

New York-based Reinauer Transportation Companies LLC took delivery of two ATBs in 2013. Dean Reinauer was delivered in August 2013 and Haggerty Girls in December.

Haggerty Girls is the third Facet Tug II class tug designed for Reinauer by Robert Hill of Ocean Tug & Barge Engineering.

The hull shape of the Facet Tug class is designed to make installation of double-skin fuel tanks in small vessels easier.

Haggerty Girls is powered by two MTU/DDC 16v4000 series diesel engines rated 2,360 hp each at 1,800 rpm. The engines are mated to two Lufkin marine reverse reduction gears. The ATB has a Beacon JAK 400 coupler system making it compatible with Reinauer’s JAK equipped 60,000-barrel and 80,000-barrel barges.

Auxiliary power comes from three John Deere 6068-T, 99-kW gensets and one John Deere 4045-T, 65-kW emergency genset. On deck, there is a JonRie capstan and a SOLAS rescue boat and davit.

Dean Reinauer, launched in August 2013, is the company’s fourth Facet Tug. Like Haggerty Girls, it is SOLAS rated.

Dean Reinauer is powered by two MTU 16v-4000 M60 diesel engines rated at 2,360 hp each. It has Lufkin RS2850HG reduction gears turning two three-bladed Nautican propellers with triple shutter rudders.

The tug is fitted with an Intercon C-series coupler system with two 34-inch diameter pins.

Bouchard getting ATBs from VT Halter

Courtesy VT Halter Marine

Denise A. Bouchard, a 112-foot ATB tug being launched at VT Halter’s Moss Point yard. The ATB will be part of Bouchard Transportation’s fleet in New York.

VT Halter Marine Inc., a subsidiary of Vision Technologies Systems Inc., launched in February the oceangoing 112-foot ATB Denise A. Bouchard.

The new ATB is 112 by 35 feet and draws 17 feet. The 4,000-hp tug is equipped with an Intercon coupler system. Denise A. Bouchard will be mated with barge B. No. 284 for service in Bouchard’s New York fleet.

VT Halter has also contracted to build an additional ATB for Bouchard for delivery in mid-2015.

The 10,000-hp twin-screw ATB will be equipped with an Intercon coupler system. It will be paired with barge B. No. 270, which measures 625 by 91 by 47 feet. The barge has a 250,000-barrel capacity.

Bisso Towboat orders ASD tug

Bisso Towboat Co., based in Luling, La., has contracted with Main Iron Works LLC, in Houma, La., to build a 4,480-hp ASD ship-assist tug for delivery in early 2015.

The new vessel will measure 100 by 38 feet with a draft of 18 feet. It will be powered by twin Caterpillar 3516C Tier 3 engines, each producing 2,240 hp at 1,600 rpm.

The engines will be paired with two Rolls-Royce US 205 FP z-dives turning 90.4-inch stainless steel propellers.

Bollard pull is estimated to be 60 tons.

New Generation/Louisiana Marine

Courtesy New Generation Marine Services

Built by New Generation Marine Services, the 2,000-hp pushboat Gunner is powered by twin Cummins diesels.

New Generation Marine Services and Shipbuilding of Houma, La., delivered the 72-by-30-foot pushboat Gunner to Louisiana Marine Operators LLC of Broussard, La., in October 2013. The vessel was designed by Parfait Maritime Designs of Mobile, Ala.

For power, the boat has twin Cummins KTA38-M marine diesels each delivering 1,000 hp at 1,800 rpm to Kahlenberg 72-by-58-inch propellers on 7-inch shafts through Twin Disc gears with ratios of 6.394:1. For auxiliary power there are two Cummins 85-kW generator sets located aft of the engine room fiddly.

Magnolia Marine/Nichols Boat Co.

Miles Madison was delivered to Magnolia Marine Transport of Vicksburg, Miss., in July 2013 by the Nichols Boat Co. of Greenville, Miss.

The towboat measures 110 by 32 by 10.25 feet and has a working draft of 8.5 feet. The vessel carries 46,000 gallons of fuel, 1,400 gallons of lube oil and 9,800 gallons of water. Crew accommodations are for nine.

The boat is powered by twin 3512C Series II Caterpillar marine diesels delivering a total of 3,000 hp at 1,600 rpm. The engines drive 84-by-70-inch four-blade propellers via twin Haley HRV2411 reduction gears with a forward and reverse gear ratio of 6.143:1.

For auxiliary power there are two 99-kW generators powered by twin John Deere 6068TFM76 engines. The system delivers 208-volt, three-phase power.

Deck equipment includes two 50-ton Wintech winches. The wheelhouse is equipped with two radars, Boatracs system, Furuno FA-150 AIS Sounder, swing indicator, satellite radio, three VHF radios, rudder monitoring system and GP-31 GPS.

Settoon Towing/Central Gulf Shipyard

Central Gulf Shipyard of New Iberia, La., delivered towboats Kim M. Settoon and Cheryl Lee Settoon to Settoon Towing of Pierre Part, La.

The 87-foot sister vessels were launched on March 13, 2013, and July 31, 2013, respectively. Both vessels are powered by two Mitsubishi S12R-Y2MPTK engines that together deliver 2,600 hp. There is one significant difference between the two boats: Cheryl Lee Settoon’s power plant is rated Tier 3, while Kim M. Settoon’s is Tier 2.

Eymard boats for Magnolia and Cajun

Eymard Marine Construction and Repair of Harvey, La., delivered two 2,000-hp towboats in 2013. In April the yard delivered the towboat Kristin to Magnolia Fleet LLC of Hahnville, La. In December 2013 the yard delivered Cajun 1 to Cajun Marine Transportation of Call, Texas. Both towboats are 72 by 30 by 10 feet and have four cabin accommodation areas.

Kristin is powered by twin K38 Cummins engines, and Cajun 1 is power by twin C32 Caterpillar engines.

Florida Marine boat from Horizon

Jeff Yates

Cynthia II is a 140-foot, 5,500-hp boat with twin Caterpillar C280-6 diesels built by Horizon Shipbuilding for Florida Marine Transporters. It is shown here on the Ohio near Metropolis, Ill.

Florida Marine Transporters Inc. of Mandeville, La., took delivery on Sept. 14, 2013, of Cynthia II, a 140-by-43-by-9.5-foot towboat built by Horizon Shipbuilding.

The new boat accommodates a crew of nine and has six staterooms. Cynthia II is powered by twin Caterpillar C280-6 marine diesels. Total horsepower is 5,500. For auxiliary power there is a Caterpillar C9 generator rated at 175 kW.

MetalCraft Marine boat for U.S. Navy

MetalCraft Marine of Cape Vincent, N.Y., and Kingston, Ontario, delivered three 30-foot aluminum towboats to the U.S. Navy in 2013, part of a six-boat contract with the Navy.

The boats are based upon the company’s Kingston 30 design for high-speed work and patrol boats. The Navy will use its new boats primarily for towing containment booms.

The boats have pushknee bows, flat aft work/cargo decks and structural pipe gunwales around the work decks. The boats are light-ice capable and can be beached. For power the boats are fitted with Iveco 6.7 liter marine diesels mated to UltraJet waterjet propulsion systems.

Army Corps of Engineers towboat

Horizon Shipbuilding Inc. of Bayou La Batre, Ala., delivered the 3,000-hp, 114-foot towboat George C. Grugett to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Aug. 9, 2013. The new vessel is the second in two years Horizon has built for the Army Corps of Engineers. George C. Grugett will serve the Memphis District. Other operations will include pushing a 500-by-150-foot load barge, and a 400-by-100-foot grading unit in support of the revetment mission of the Corps of Engineers Mississippi Valley District.

The vessel is named for the former executive assistant of the Corps of Engineers’ Memphis District. Grugett was a bomber pilot in World War II from 1943 to 1945 and then spent 35 years working for the Corps of Engineers. After retiring from the Corps, he served as executive vice president of the Mississippi Valley Flood Control Association.

George C. Grugett has a beam of 35 feet and a draft of 8.5 feet. The vessel carries 21,545 gallons of fuel.

Southern Towing boats from Steiner

Jeff Yates

Paula Fortier, with twin z-drives, is a 100-foot, 2,300-hp boat built for Southern Towing by Steiner Shipyard.

Southern Towing Co. of Memphis, Tenn., took delivery of two z-drive towboats in 2013 from Steiner Shipyard. The first vessel, Paula Fortier, was delivered in March and the second, Theresa Echols, in July.

The new boats are identical with dimensions of 100 by 34 by 8.5 feet. They feature z-drive propulsion, the company’s choice since 2008. The towboats are also double hulled.

For power the boats have twin Tier 2 MTU 8V400 M235 marine diesels rated at 2,300 hp. The auxiliary power generator sets are run off the main engines. There is also a backup standalone MTU-powered generator rated at 175 kW.

Kirby boat from Sneed Shipbuilding

Sneed Shipbuilding Inc. of Channelview, Texas, delivered the towboat Brewster Knott to Kirby Inland Marine, of Houston, in July 2013. Named for longtime Kirby captain, the late Brewster Knott, the towboat is 87 feet long with a beam of 32 feet and a draft of 8.5 feet. Brewster Knott is powered by twin Cummins KTA38-M2 marine diesels rated at 2,000 hp, and has Twin Disc gears.

Brian Gauvin contributed to this article.

By Professional Mariner Staff