By John Simpson, Editor, Aluminum Now and Michael Skillingberg, VP, Technology, The Aluminum Association, Inc. Aluminum has been used in the marine industry for more than 100 years because of its light weight and ease of fabrication combined with good corrosion and fatigue resistance. However, for much of the past 30 years, fiberglass has been the material of choice of North American boatbuilders, particularly for higher-volume production lines. Competitively priced compared with boats made from most other materials, fiberglass boats can also be made from standardized molds that reduce their construction time and labor. Aluminum alloys, which are specified for marine use, offer many benefits, though, too. Their high level of performance along with recent advances in aluminum cutting and welding is helping to reduce fiberglass' boats cost advantage, and the metal's utility for a wide range of boatbuilding applications is poised for reappraisal. Changing Image of Aluminum Boats "Aluminum boat technology is relatively new," says Steve Daigle, president of Daigle Welding & Marine Ltd., in Campbell River, British Columbia, noting that welded aluminum boats first came on the market en masse as recently as the late 1960s. Prior to that, riveting was the standard technique for joining aluminum sheets on boat hulls-a technique still used for many smaller boats that use thinner-gauge aluminum.
Conrad Industries, Inc. is expanding its products and services to include aluminum marine fabrication, repair and conversion for both commercial and government customers. The expansion is part of a $5.5 million investment in one of the company's existing facilities in Amelia, La. Kenneth G. "Jerry" Myers, Jr., Conrad's President and CEO said, "We are extremely excited to announce our entrance into the aluminum marine fabrication, repair and conversion business via our subsidiary
Canada Metal (Pacific) Ltd. delivers sustainable and efficient products for demanding commercial marine applications. Its wide range of Martyr magnesium and aluminum anodes contain no traces of toxic cadmium, a distinction that earned CMP a place on the upcoming Europort show's Green Route. This honor is given to products and services that demonstrably reduce the environmental impact of marine vessels. As the only company on the market to offer cadmium-free cathodic protection for salt
US Department of Defense has issued the following Navy contracts for construction of high speed maneuverable surface targets (HSMSTs). The contracts are awarded to Silver Ships Inc., Theodore, Ala. and Gravois Aluminum Boats LLC, doing business as Metal Shark Aluminum Boats LLC, Jeanerette, La., who are each being awarded separate firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple award contracts for the construction of high speed maneuverable surface targets (HSMSTs).
Moose Boats, an aluminum boat manufacturer, has been awarded a contract from US Department of the Interior – US Park Police, for a M1-44 Patrol Boat. This is a 44-ft all aluminum catamaran powered by twin 600hp Cummins diesel engines coupled with twin Hamilton 322 water-jets. This vessel is designed to attain a top speed of 40 knots, cruise at approximately 30 knots and will be used for security patrol of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
In June 2002, the fast expanding Austal USA yard, in Mobile, AL, introduced an apprenticeship program to its recruitment efforts. Since then, this program has introduced three classes to its shipbuilding curriculum, which is recognized by the U.S. Labor Board, and has successfully entered into its second year of operation. Shortly after Austal USA opened its new aluminum shipbuilding facility in February 2001, they joined forces with the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce and Bishop State
Aluminum Motion Compensated Helideck boosts offshore safety, reduces operational costs by increasing landing windows Barge Master, a producer of motion compensated equipment for the offshore industry, has partnered with Bayards Aluminium constructions, a specialist in lightweight and maintenance free structures for the offshore industry, to design the first aluminum Motion Compensated Helideck (MCH). Vessel motions can often have an adverse effect on the safety and costs of offshore
Designed by policemen for policemen, the Interceptor line of 43 ft. high speed RIBs are capable of speeds up to 70 mph, and are engineered to be the strongest, safest, most seaworthy police boats ever built, says the manufacturer, Rex Alloy Rigid Inflatables. According to the company, the integration of state-of-the-art marine materials produces a boat that is virtually unsinkable, exceptionally buoyant and incredibly stable in all sea conditions
In October, the Office of Naval Research hosted a Friction Stir Science & Technology Review in York, Pa. to discuss advancements in Friction Stir technologies. Among the attendees was Dr. Jeffrey Schultz Ph.D., Chief Technology Officer and co-founder of Blacksburg’s high-tech engineering firm Schultz-Creehan, who reported the progress on his company’s development of Friction Stir Fabrication Technology.
Afai Southern’s aluminum fast ferry “HAIYAO” for Haitong Shipping Co. launched successfully “HAIYAO” is the second one of the 35m series vessels co-designed and built by Afai Southern. The first vessel “HAIJU” started its operation before the “ May Day” of this year, verified that the technical performance of this type of vessel is advanced, and the economical effect is good. The shipowner is said to be very satisfied.
Incat Crowther has received a contract to design an offshore commercial oilfield security vessel for Veecraft Marine and its client, UTM Dredging Ltd, the designer announced today. Continuing its relationship with Veecraft Marine, a South African shipyard specializing in aluminum vessels
IN.MOTION Technology Distribution, LLC, announced the launch of a new milling disc designed for fast, efficient beveling, weld preparation and weld repair. According to the manufacturer, these new discs offer a higher material removal rate than any conventional abrasive
Kvichak Marine Industries, a Vigor Industrial Company, was awarded a contract by the Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA), San Francisco, Calif. for the design and construction of two all-aluminum 400 passenger-only ferries.
CWind, a provider of services to the offshore wind industry, has placed an order for four new crew transfer vessels from Aluminium Marine Consultants (AMC), a shipbuilding and consulting company based on the Isle of Wight. The order consists of two 23m aluminum catamarans and two 26m aluminum
The first of the two Patrol Boats built for the Spanish Guardia Civil was launched at Gondan Shipyard’s facilities in Ribadeo. The contract was signed last summer. With an overall length of 20.5 m and a beam of 5.0 m, these boats have been built in Aluminum and Fiber (GRP) in
Steelhead Marine, a North American crane manufacturer, has expanded its product offering with the launch of the new E Series 1000 crane. Suited for commercial and recreational vessels, the E Series crane is available primarily in a 1,000-lb model with a 1
Kvichak Marine Industries, Inc, a Vigor Industrial Company, delivered the first of three new Bristol Bay boats. The new, top house design all-aluminum 32’ x 16’ jet propelled gillnetter is a product of the Kvichak design team and is powered by twin Volvo D11 EVEC-E engines
Willard Marine, Inc. has been awarded a contract to supply the Nepal Army with two newly designed aluminum riverine boats. Under the contract, issued by the U.S. Navy Foreign Military Sales (FMS) office, Willard Marine is producing two 31
Moore Boat LLC recently delivered the first of three all new aluminum Moore Shallow Shuttle 23 RIB’s to Seacrets, Jamaica USA after the vessel’s successful completion of various sea trials and the U.S. Coast Guard’s final simplified stability test
IMTRA announced today through its exclusive North American distributorship of Sola-Cure shades — its line of customizable, high-quality and comprehensive solutions for solar shades and blackout blinds. Designed to reduce glare and heat from windows, and provide protection
The U.S. Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (SLSDC) has announced that eight U.S. ports in the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System are receiving the prestigious Robert J. Lewis Pacesetter Award. The awards were given for registering increases in international cargo tonnage
Kvichak Marine Industries, Inc. was recently awarded a contract for construction of a 60’ aluminum catamaran research vessel for the California Department of Water Resources designed by Incat Crowther, Australia with design guidance and customer representation by Jensen Maritime Consultants
From the four-story office tower, housing 100 technical engineers and administration staff, to the 65,000-square-meter yard with extensive fabrication and machine shops and a huge dry dock, the Xin Yue Feng Shipyard has been building every more sophisticated vessels
Automated welding equipment helps aluminum boat designer and builder navigate to increased productivity; advanced machines speed the fabrication process while maintaining high weld quality at MetalCraft Marine The fast-paced marine industry faces constant demands for efficiency and
Torqeedo has updated its electric outboards with a new design to meet the demands of commercial users. Available in comes in 5 hp and 8 hp equivalents, the Cruise is an electric solution for pontoon boats, sailboats, small boats, workboats