Thordon Bearings’ Egyptian distributor and integrated services provider, Nefertiti Marine, has commissioned the water lubricated Thordon SXL propeller shaft bearings fitted on board the 24,112 gt ropax ‘Daleela’.
The 1991-built, 400-pax capacity ropax, owned by El-Etehad International and chartered to Scandro Holdings, began operations on the revived Piraeus/Limassol route in June, 2022, following an extensive refit in Egypt’s Suez Shipyard’s floating dock.
Nefertiti Marine supplied 14 Thordon SXL forward, intermediate, and aft bearings machined to fit propeller shaft diameters of 525 mm and 530 mm. The original rubber propeller shaft bearings had completely worn out, exceeding the maximum clearances allowed by 5 and 7 mm, respectively.
Karim Abd El Karim, Engineering Manager, Nefertiti Marine, explained; “There were no visible cooling grooves in some areas of the rubber bearing, due to the excessive wear.”
El-Etehad’s decision to replace the rubber propeller shaft bearings with the SXL elastomeric material followed the success of a similar installation to the owner’s 1993-built sistership ‘Amal’ last year, also retrofitted by Suez Shipyard.
El Karim added: “The owner was familiar with the environmental benefits of a propeller shaft bearing lubricated by seawater but wanted a more cost-effective, low maintenance solution capable of reducing time in drydock. Compared to a traditional rubber bearing system, an SXL bearing has a much longer wear life and, in this case, doubled the time between drydockings.
“We worked closely with the shipyard on this project and completed commissioning in early June,” he said.
Awny Gad, Engineering Superintendent, El Etehad International, commented: “It was important to have a bearing system proven to reduce the high operational expenditure associated with traditional rubber bearings. When Nefertiti Marine put forward the SXL solution, we were keen to try it. So far, we are very satisfied with the performance of the Thordon material and the 24/7 customer service we receive from Nefertiti.”
Prior to ‘Daleela’s’ voyage in June, the last ferry to operate the 30-hour route between Greece and Cyprus was the ‘Salamis Star’ in October, 2001.
Craig Carter, Vice President Business Development, Thordon Bearings, said: “We are immensely proud to have been involved in this project, which marks the revival of a maritime link between Greece and Cyprus after more than 20 years.”
Daleela sails from Piraeus to Limassol every Tuesday and Friday with the return crossing on a Wednesday and Sunday