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Repair and maintenance – at a moment’s notice

article picture: Repair and maintenance – at a moment’s notice

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Comprehensive maintenance work of modern-day vessels exacts lots of know-how and experience, plus the right kind of attitude. In southwestern Finland, Mill & Marine Service Ltd. meets the requirements. Established in 1988, the company’s main office has been situated in the city of Pori since 2014.

Wtake care of industrial and marine maintenance operations around the world, including ship repairs and newbuilds,” CEO & Sales Manager Pasi Kerola from Mill & Marine Service Ltd. sums up.

Cruise and cargo ships are also frequently serviced by the company. Marine service work picked up after the acquisition of half of Turun Kovakromi Oy’s shares, eight years ago.

”Before that, chrome platings were outsourced, but it was challenging to get the platings for hydraulic or other cylinders finished on time. Now that we handle platings ourselves, we can make sure that both the timetables and the quality of work will match our high standards. For maritime repair work, timely deliveries are often crucial,” notes Kerola.

One of Mill & Marine’s recent assignments was to install the world’s first onboard rollercoaster onto a large cruise ship.

VERSATILE OPERATIONS

Along standard repair and maintenance work, Mill & Marine Service Ltd. handles classification inspections for various types of vessels.

”These may include, for instance, hatch and crane inspections for ro-ro vessels. Such inspections are our speciality. Furthermore, we service propulsion devices and stabiliser equipment of vessels,” Kerola mentions.

”We also inspect and repair steel structures, hydraulics, and electrical system installations, in addition to general troubleshooting and fault localisation. These days, collecting big data can help in pinpointing system errors, but quite often the problems can be in the hardware so they need to be hunted down by other methods.”

The company’s special abilities further include installation and removing of actuators, renewal and changing of components, pipe installations and renewals, repairs for gasket arrangements, overhauls of various structures, deliveries and adjustments of hydraulic cylinders and pumps, deliveries of electric motors and electrical installations, plus yearly inspections of vessels and equipment, with reports to public authorities as necessary.

Today, Mill & Marine’s personnel consists of some 20 professionals, with experts in various fields of service work. A wide network of subcontractors also comes in handy, e.g. in supplying spare parts.

kuva
picutre by Pixabay

Spare parts are often delivered for steel hardware, for hydraulic works onboard vessels – pumps, cylinders, valves, gaskets, pipes, and hoses –, for gaskets utilised in ramp, door and hatch assemblies, or for electric and automation system repairs.

”In our line of work, you need to be ready to travel to service locations at a moment’s notice, even to distant countries to carry out permanent or temporary repairs. Quite often, cruise ships need troubleshooting in the Caribbean,” Mr. Kerola recounts.

PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE

Many of Mill & Marine’s assignments require plenty of technical knowledge and expertise.

”You need to be constantly aware of the latest developments in ship technologies, in order to know what kind of faults you can expect to find onboard ships,” Kerola emphasises.

”As onboard automatisation keeps increasing, service personnel will need to learn the details of all the latest hi-tech devices. The job requires life-long learning. It is demanding but also highly interesting work for people who love challenges and who have a lot of maritime experience. In fact. we’d very much like to hire some new professionals of this type!”

kuva
picutre by Pixabay

Typically, ships are inspected in the course of their regular service periods at shipyards – but often vessels need repairs even at other times.

”Inspections for newbuilds may call for ascertaining that certain parts of ships are watertight, gas-tight or weather-proof. This data is needed for ship classification.”

One of Mill & Marine’s recent repair jobs was to renew the bow cargo-hatches for M/S Gabriella after the ship had collided with the pier at Helsinki harbour. Certain steel structures needed to be replaced and hatch mechanisms re-adjusted. This was occasionally challenging work, particularly as the hatches weighed some 35 tons.

”Even so, the ship has already returned to her shipping route, sailing happily on the seas. In the maritime repair and maintenance business, successful repairs are the only option,” Kerola points out.

by Ari Monenen

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