Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding, Duclos Corporation
, is building new pilot boats
for the Portland, Maine and Delaware pilots. The shipyard's new Chesapeake class of pilot boats has also been built for the Virginia, Maryland, and Tampa Bay pilots. The Portland pilots will take delivery of their new launch in September, while the Delaware pilot boat is scheduled for delivery in November.
The all-aluminum boats, designed by C. Raymond Hunt Associates, measure 52.5 x 17-ft. with a 4.8 ft. draft, and are designed to reach 25 knots. The Portland pilots' launch will be powered by twin Caterpillar 3406E diesel engines, each delivering 600 bhp at 2,100 rpm, with Twin Disc M65114A gear-boxes. The Delaware pilots, on the other hand, chose Daewoo V18TIM 10-cylinder engines, coupled to ZF 350A gears. The engines turn five-blade Hall & Stavert bronze propellers. The Portland launch will have a Northern Lights generator, with 10 kW of output. Both vessels will be equipped with heated handrails and decks to prevent ice build-up in the winter. They are designed to have wide side-decks, and side and rear doors. At the transom will be throttle and steering controls and a winch-operated U-frame over a recessed platform for pilot rescue operations.