National Marine Adds Drydock And Fabrication Shop To Shipyard

Substantial equipment additions consisting of a new 3,500-ton drydock and large steel fabrication shop are now in use at National Marine Service's Hartford, 111., shipyard, D.A. Wright, president of the company, has announced.

"The new facilities complement each other and permit the shipyard to offer faster hull repair service with g r e a t l y reduced downtime for damaged river vessels," adds Eugene E. Ahlemeyer, president of the Shipyard Division.

The shipyard facility, located just north of St. Louis near the confluence of the Missouri, Illinois and Mississippi Rivers at Hartford, 111., has four additional drydocks, a modern diesel engine repair shop, a complete machine shop, an extensive marine parts i n v e n t o r y , harbor fleeting and shifting service, a cleaning plant for towboats and barges, and a wheel shop.

The new drydock lifting capacity of 3,500 tons permits underwater repair of the largest towboats on the inland waterways, including triple-screw 10,500-hp towboats and even loaded barges in emergencies.

The 16,000-square-foot steel fabrication shop, containing the most modern welding and steel cutting equipment, houses a 600 ton press which is capable of forming 41-foot sections of steel plate up to 1L. inch in thickness.

An overhead crane t r a n s p o r ts steel plate from an outside storage area into the shop. After fabrication, a second overhead crane conveys the completed sections through the shop and then, via curved rails, to the repair docks.

The ability to handle larger fabricated steel sections, and the addition of the high-capacity drydock, greatly increases the capacity of the shipyard to service the marine industry. Robert E. Carroll, vice president and general manager of Operations, says, "These additions are our answer to the growing need for faster service for larger towboats and barges." Mr. Carroll added that future programs include a new machine shop, and facilities for expanding the diesel engine services.

National Marine will also open a diesel engine repair facility in New Orleans, La., in the near future.

"This new branch responds directly to the rapidly growing Gulf Coast marine and offshore industries," says Glennon G. Bequette, vice president for Business Development of the Shipyard.

"Large General Motors EMD diesel engines are often specified for powering oilfield supply vessels, drilling rigs and generators, and parts and service for EMD engines are one of our specialties." National Marine is a subsidiary of NICOR Inc., and is headquartered at 1750 Brentwood Boulevard in St. Louis, Mo.

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 16,  Feb 1980

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