Mv. Amelia Ray Features Complete Thordon Package

The Amelia Ray, delivered by Rodriguez Shipbuilding to L&L Marine Transportation in June (WJ, July 20) has a full range of Thordon oil-free and grease-free bearings designed to reduce a vessel’s lost charter days.

The 1,600 hp. towboat is the first vessel in the L&L Marine fleet to be specified with a Thordon propulsion package at the vessel design stage.

The decision to select the RiverTough tailshaft bearings, shaft liners, TG100 seals, ThorPlas-Blue rudder bearings, ThorPlas-Blue Self Aligning Bearings (SAB), and SXL thrust washers for the newbuild follows the success of earlier retrofits across the owner’s fleet.

L&L Marine owner Lee LeBoeuf explained that all his vessels now operate with only Thordon bearings due to the “significant operational savings” experienced with the earlier installations. The Harvey, La.-based operator owns a fleet of five vessels.

Sign up for Waterway Journal's weekly newsletter.Our weekly newsletter delivers the latest inland marine news straight to your inbox including breaking news, our exclusive columns and much more.

“We initially replaced all our rubber tailshaft bearings with Thordon’s RiverTough bearings and shaft liners and found we were able to extend drydocking intervals from three to eight years,” he said.

“We then started retrofitting ThorPlas-Blue bearings in the rudder stocks and installing TG100 seals, which reduced operational costs even further as there is less vessel down time and maintenance. This means we are more attractive to our customers, more dependable and more reliable. We can better plan drydock schedules in line with the operational needs of our customers,” LeBoeuf said.

He estimated that while the initial capital expenditure is more than a conventional tailshaft/propulsion bearing system, the Thordon application on the Amelia Ray will result in annual operational savings of $15,000.

“Compared to conventional propulsion and tailshaft bearings, which require regular maintenance, replacement and frequent drydocking, the Thordon system results in threefold reduction in operational costs,” LeBoeuf said.