Isle of Mull’s 33 tonne bow visor removed as part of annual survey

A nine-day project to replace bow visor hinge pins and bearings for CalMac Ferries’ MV Isle of Mull has been completed by Cammell Laird.

Delivered as part of the vessel’s annual survey, the project involved a multi-disciplinary approach from Cammell Laird’s planning, technical and lifting teams in order to remove the vessel’s 33 tonne bow visor and replace its hinge pins and bearings.  The programme involved a series of heavy lifts using  200 tonne jacks and a 350 tonne mobile crane to transfer the bow visor to rigging on the bottom of  Cammell Laird’s number 6 dry dock.

Paul Owen, Managing Director at Cammell Laird Shiprepairers & Shipbuilders Limited,  said: “Removal of bow visors is not a commonplace activity but it was necessary on this project to facilitate the removal and replacement of the Isle of Mull’s main hinge pins and bearings.  Thanks to the input of our planning and technical teams we had a very precise programme before the Isle of Mull arrived in dock, which helped to minimise vessel downtime, deliver efficiencies and expedite the project quickly.”

Following replacement of the bow visor’s main hinge pins and bearings, Cammell Laird reinstalled the bow visor and carried out a series of inspections and water tests to ensure that seal integrity had not been compromised.

The MV Isle of Mull ferry, which has capacity for 70 vehicles and 962 passengers, provides a regular service between Oban and the Isle of Mull on the west coast of Scotland.

Graham Henderson, Head of Technical Operations – Asset Management, for CalMac Ferries said: “Our ferries provide a vital link for those on Scotland’s west coast so it’s imperative they operate to the highest and safest standards. Cammell Laird’s knowledge of our vessels, combined with their planning expertise, adds real value to CalMac as it delivers certainty to the budget and when our vessels can return to service.

“Work on the MV Isle of Mull was delivered efficiently, professionally and with Cammell Laird’s trademark commitment to quality and precision engineering.”

Cammell Laird has recently secured a new four-year contract for the annual maintenance and dry docking of CalMac’s five largest vessels – MV Clansman, MV Loch Seaforth, MV Lord of The Isles, MV Finlaggan and MV Hebrides – which provide an essential service between the Inner and Outer Hebrides and the Scottish Mainland.  All five ferries will dock annually at Cammell Laird, with the first vessels arriving in early 2021.

Cammell Laird was founded in 1828 and is based on the River Mersey, in the Liverpool City Region, on the west coast of Britain. The company’s Birkenhead site expands across 130 acres and includes four dry docks, a large modular construction hall and extensive covered workshops. It is also at the centre of a marine and engineering cluster, with easy access to support services, classification societies and port state authorities.