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Finning Completes Major Overhaul for Thames Clippers

Finning Power Systems has completed a major overhaul of two Cat® engines in one of the vessels in the Thames Clippers’ fleet within its 10-day annual shutdown period, ensuring zero downtime was incurred during regular business hours. 

The 13-strong Thames Clippers’ fleet runs Cat engines in three of its vessels.  Its flagship 220-seat Hurricane Clipper, capable of speeds of up to 28 knots, uses the Cat 3412 propulsion engine, while the Sun and Moon Clippers run on Cat 3406 propulsion engines.   

With the Hurricane Clipper having operated for approximately 12,000 hours of service, Thames Clippers approached Finning to complete an overhaul of its engines to ensure reliability and performance could be maintained.  To prevent this causing any downtime during regular running times, the maintenance work needed to be completed within an allocated 10-day shutdown period.   

Commenting on the Finning service support, Clive Hunt, Maintenance Manager at Thames Clippers said: “In previous years we have used a number of other suppliers to service our engines.  However, based on its competitive pricing and expertise in the Cat engine range, we opted to use Finning Power Systems on this occasion.   

“It’s critical to our bottom line that our vessels are running for as long as possible during regular business hours.  For this reason, large-scale services like this need to be completed within a very specific and tight timeframe.  We’ve been very impressed that Finning has been able to complete the engine overhaul within the allocated 10-day shutdown period.  The vessel is now back out on the Thames and running very well.”

The Cat engines removed from the vessel were taken to Finning’s dedicated marine engine workshop, where certified engineers conducted the maintenance.  This bare block strip and rebuild included replacement cylinder heads, cylinder packs, all new bearings, turbo chargers, fuel injectors, water pumps and other ancillary components.  The result is that the engines were returned in ‘as new’ condition, achieving peak performance and reliability at low operating costs.     The Hurricane, Sun and Moon Clippers have been powered by Cat engines since they were built in 2000/01.  As well as delivering high fuel efficiency and reliability, compliance with London emissions regulations is also important for vessels in the Thames Clippers fleet. 

Dan Maund, Product Support Account Manager at Finning, said: “We understand how important vessel uptime is to a business like Thames Clippers, so offering quality service and support is an essential aspect of our relationship with the customer.   We were able to return the vessel to service in the specified timeframe, and we’ll continue working with the customer to minimise downtime on vessels across the fleet.”