407 February 2007
Kirby's New Look on the River
The word has been spreading up and down the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers of a good-looking new towboat, the Robert G. Stone Jr., for several months. Now a second of the new Kirby push boats is about to joint that first one. Designed by Corning Townsend (www.ctmarine.com ) this series of boast is being built at Quality Ship Yards in Houma Louisiana. (www.tdw.com/services/quality.html) They are 90-feet long with a 34-foot beam and a 10-foot molded depth. The vessels have Townsend's distinctive high visibility wheelhouse that has been seen before on some larger vessels that he designed.
The Kirby Corporation took time in the development of these vessels with attention to quality, longevity and environmental safety. The 10,040 gallons of potable water is carried in stainless steel tanks. The 22,144 gallons of fuel is carried in fuel tanks that are separated from the side shell plate in a double bottom/double side fuel tank arrangement. The vessel is powered by a pair of Cummins KTA38M2 engines delivering 1050 hp at 1600 RPM into Twin Disc MG 5600 gears with 6.04:1 ratios turning 82 by 59-inch Sound Propellers on 32-foot by 8-inch shafts. (www.soundprop.com)
With accommodations for a crew of seven the vessels are assigned to pushing barges on the inland waterways. On deck they are fitted with Nabrico winches and a Superior-Lidgerwood-Mundy capstan. (www.lidgerwood.com)
The Robert G. Stone Jr. was delivered to the owners on October 26, 2006 while the second vessel in the series will deliver on January 29, 2007.
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