Overhauling Normandie's machinery
During Normandie's refit one of the main focuses was her machinery, and in particular her engines, gearboxes, propellors and generators...
The propeller blades on pallets you can see in the photo are the ones that were removed and will be taken back to our technical warehouse in France where they will be cleaned and if necessary repaired so they can be used as spares should Normandie need them. New blades have been attached to the propeller shafts.Bow thruster tunnels
The propeller blades on pallets you can see in the photo have just been removed and will shortly be taken back to the Brittany Ferries technical warehouse in France where they will be cleaned and if necessary repaired so they can be used as spares. Meanwhile a set of shiny new blades have been attached to the propeller shafts in their place.
Up at the sharp end the bow thrusters have had their blades renewed and their motors overhauled. Normandie has two bow thrusters which are used to provide sideways thrust whilst the ship is manoeuvring in port. Without them Normandie would require a tug boat every time she arrived or departed port.
The two thrusters are mounted in tunnels at the bow, in the photo these are the two larger tunnels you can see, the third smaller tunnel meanwhile aids manoeuvrability.Scuppers
Normandie has four engines each providing 6000 horsepower. The engines were stripped down and parts taken ashore to be cleaned and a sample of old engine oil was taken away for analysis. Once all the parts had been returned gleaming from the workshops the engines were rebuilt and tested.
Interestingly, under normal conditions while crossing the Channel, Normandie uses all four engines but only one of her two rudders, she normally only makes use of the second rudder when she is manoeuvring in port.
During the drydock Normandie provided her own power via one of her two diesel generators, this generator ran 24 hours a day. Meanwhile the electrical tools being used outside and inside the ship were powered by a shore supply.
Normandie has two stabiliser fins which can be deployed when things get choppy. These fins were checked and re-sealed and their hydraulics serviced. The motors that drive the rudders were also thoroughly overhauled.
In the photo showing the side of the ship you can see what looks like giant corks sticking out of holes in the side. The holes are called scuppers. These drain water from the outside decks and garage decks to prevent water sloshing around on board and causing stability problems. While the hull was sandblasted, undercoated and painted these corks were pushed into the scupper outlets to prevent anything getting in and jamming the valve inside. The small hose in the middle of the cork is to drain any water from above and to allow it to do so without running down any fresh paint, but as the chance of rain in those temperatures was unlikely, they weren't needed.
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