Gladding-Hearn Delivers High-Speed Launch to St. Lawrence Seaway Pilots

Chesapeake class pilot boat

August 21, 2020 – Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding, Duclos Corporation delivered a Chesapeake class pilot boat to the Seaway Pilots Inc. in Cape Vincent, NY. The Seaway pilots navigate ships in and out of the ports and harbors of the St. Lawrence Seaway between St. Regis, NY and Port Weller on Lake Ontario. 

With a length overall of 53.6’, a beam of 17.8’ and a draft of 4.8’, the all-aluminum pilot boat features the Ray Hunt Designs Deep V hull. It is powered by twin Volvo Penta D16, EPA Tier 3-compliant diesel engines, each delivering 641Bhp at 1800 rpm and a top speed of 23 knots. A Humphree interceptor trim-tab control system, with Automatic Trim Optimization is installed at the transom. Diesel capacity is 800 gallons, which shipyard officials said will provide a range of at least 300 miles at an economical speed of about 20 knots. 

The engines turn 5-blade NiBrAl propellers via ZF500-1-A gear boxes. The launch is equipped with a 12kW Northern Lights EPA Tier 3-compliant genset. 

The wheelhouse, flush-mounted to the deck amidships, features a center-line helm station, heated forward, side and roof windows, five Llebroc seats and a settee. It is heated by a 32,000 Btu reverse-cycle air-conditioning system. The decks, handrails and cabin are heated by a 100,000 Btu diesel fire hydronic heating system, augmented by main engine waste heat. 

Outside of the wheelhouse are wide side decks, side and rear doors, and boarding platforms on the roof. At the transom are throttle and steering controls, and a winch-operated, fixed davit over a recessed platform for rescue operations.