Recently one of our diver/technician teams carried out a double underwater stern tube seal repair on a roro ship berthed in Port of Burnie, Tasmania. The ship was suffering from an oil leak, making an on-site repair necessary. Using two Hydrex flexible mobdocks simultaneously the team was able to carry out the entire operation on-site and underwater, saving the owner an expensive and time-consuming trip to drydock.
After arriving on-site, the diving team first set up a monitoring station next to the vessel. The operation then started with a thorough underwater inspection of the stern tube seal assemblies.
After the inspection the divers cleaned the assemblies and installed both flexible mobdocks. By doing this they created a dry underwater environment so that they could work in drydock-like conditions.
The exact same procedure was followed on both stern tube seal assemblies. The split ring was first disconnected and brought to the surface to be cleaned. After cleaning the entire assembly, the divers removed the first seal and replaced it with a new one which was then bonded. This was done in cooperation with the supervising OEM technician. The procedure was repeated with the other three seals.
A successful operation was concluded with leakage tests, the removal of the flexible mobdocks and the reinstallation of the rope guards.
Despite the remote location of the ro-ro vessel, our technical department was able to make all practical logistic arrangements and organize a mobilization of the equipment very swiftly. In the recent past we have carried out several operations in Australia, including repairs on this ro-ro ship’s sister vessel.
The same high quality, close to home or faraway
Taking advantage of our flexible mobdock technique the men were able to carry out the entire repair on-site and underwater. Because all the required material is ready to be transported at all times, no time is lost making preparations.
With Hydrex organizing everything from start to finish, the owner did not have to worry about making any arrangements for the repair. After the seals had been successfully replaced he could sail his vessel to her next stop free of oil leaks.
We have developed a flexible mobdock repair method that enables the underwater replacement of all types and sizes of shaft seals. It allows ship owners to keep their vessels sailing, saving precious time and money.
Damaged stern tube seals will cause oil leaks or an ingress of water. By replacing the seals as soon as possible we can keep the down time low. Because seal repairs can be performed during cargo operations the ship can keep its schedule.
It is not always straightforward to replace seals. There can be quite a bit of variation in the size of the stern tube itself and, for instance, the liners can be worn down and show ruts. However, all this is routinely handled by our experienced teams.
All our offices are equipped with the latest facilities, lightweight equipment and tools. This allowed for a timely arrival of the team in Tasmania with everything needed to successfully complete the job.