Page 67: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (September 2014)
Marine Propulsion Edition
I t has been said that, “There is no reason to design or build an ugly boat.” This is clearly a dictum that those who designed and built the Noman O adhered to. Built in 1970 as the Duncan Foss by the Albina Shipyard under hull number 419, at Portland, Oregon, the tug has a fi ne shear that sweeps down the 75-foot length from a high sea-going bow to a low fantail that car- ries most of the boat’s 24-foot midships beam. The classic rounded west coast style wheel house car- ries aft to a stepped-down galley and still lower fi d- dly section leaving ample room on the aft deck for a towing winch loaded with 1,600 feet of 1 3/8 tow wire. A fl ying bridge atop the wheelhouse serves as a functional vantage for making up to tows.
Since being acquired by Olson Marine Inc. of
Ketchikan Alaska, the tug, has provided good ser- vice to the fi rm’s fi ve-boat fl eet. A black hull and white superstructure with distinctive blue trim shows the excellent level of care that has kept the sound and worthy of a new set of engines to ex- tend her life for several more revenue producing decades.
Owner Rick Olson approached Mike Painter, his local Cummins dealer at South East Diesel & Elec- tric in Ketchikan. The two men worked out a deal to change out the existing older Cat D348s rated at 703 HP each for a pair of modern EPA Tier 3 com- pliant Cummins QSK19 MCRS engines rated for 750 HP at 1,800 RPM. The electronic controlled engines are built on Cummins’ 19-liter (1,150 cu. in.) block that in its mechanical KTA19 version has served generations of Alaskan fi shermen and mari- ners. It that has now won wide spread acceptance in Alaska in the electronic QSK19 version.
A project team headed by Jamie Painter and Brian
Pinkstaff, also of SE Diesel, was put together with engineer Kevin Johnson and Capt. Brian Ingerham of the Norman O along with Dave Kuehl, Olson’s port engineer. Over a three-month period in early 2014, the team cut, welded, sanded, painted, lifted and aligned to remove the old engines, modify the beds, and then install and align the new engines along with additional refurbishments. When done, the QSK19 engines were delivering 750 HP each at 1800 RPM to ZFW4400 gears turning 70 by 54- inch fi ve-blade stainless props from Sound Propel- ler. The engines were fi tted with C-Command En- gine controls with digital display as well as ECM
Data and alarm reporting at each control station. To compensate for the lighter engines the team added 8,000 pounds of concrete ballast.
By the end of April the repowered Norman O was ready to go back into service. Sea trials dem- onstrated a maximum speed of 12 knots with a 38
GPH fuel burn per engine. At peak torque the tug makes 10.9 knots with a fuel burn of only 18 GPH per engine. The 75-foot tug has a 66-foot loaded waterline and a 19,000-gallon fuel capacity.
Speaking to his decision to have the job done in
Ketchikan, Olson Marine owner Rick Olson said, “They have a high density local knowledge of the marine repower work. I have a historical relation- ship with many of the crew, especially the Painters at Southeast Diesel. This network and trust made the project a success and benefi tted the local econ- omy.”
By Alan Haig-Brown
New Power for Alaskan Tug (Photos cour tesy of Olson Marine)
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