Building steel sections for the ‘Star Bonaire’; a challenging overhaul project successfully completed
The 90 meter-long tanker vessel ‘Star Bonaire’, built at Damen Shiprepair Harlingen in 1997, underwent a four months of major renovation at Damen Shiprepair Harlingen yard. ‘Star Bonaire’ owned by Star Bonaire Koole Tank Transport BV, transports edible oil to the North Sea and destinations such as Germany and the United Kingdom.
A decision had to be made whether to build a new ship or renovate the vessel since the ballast tanks in the bow and stern were in bad shape and needed to be replaced. It was decided that the most optimal solution was to replace large sections of the vessel. Niron Staal has fabricated the steel sections and much attention was paid to the quality of the work carried out. This included the fitting of new parts, and equally important, the straightness of the vessel was monitored throughout the entire operation.
Although for this operation, the lead time was not a crucial factor in this project, the construction of new sections offers certain building advantages. For one, this process is more efficient, and for another, the fabrication of these sections can take place when the ship is not in the yard. This meant that ‘Star Bonaire’ could transport liquid bulk cargo a couple months longer.
In terms of renovating the vessel, there were a number of challenges. To begin with, the existing ships construction did not always correspond with expectations based on the available drawings. The available space in the hold between the cargo tanks and the wing tanks was minimal. This meant that connecting vulnerable cabling and piping of the cargo system to the ballast side tanks was labour intensive. When these ballast side tanks were removed, these cables and pipes had to be separated and supported, as well as protected against hot work. Furthermore, replacing the plastic ballast piping was a complicated task, especially in the stern. And, finally, the chain locker was in a worse state than was expected, and had to be completely renewed.
Quality and financial considerations played an important role in this project’s success. After four intense months, the end result was something both Star Bonaire Koole Tank Transport BV and Damen Shiprepair Harlingen are proud of. Niron Staal would like to thank both companies for their cooperation.