VESSEL REVIEW | Pilot 24 – Finnish-built pilot launch for Gdansk operator

Photo: Kewatec Aluboat

Finnish boatbuilder Kewatec Aluboat has handed over a new pilot boat to Polish operator Gdansk Pilot. Named Pilot 24, the all-aluminium, high-speed craft is a near identical sister of the 2020-built Pilot 23, an earlier boat that was also delivered to the same operator for use in the Baltic Sea. The two Kewatec boats were acquired to replace older vessels in the operator’s pilotage fleet.

The newbuild has an LOA of 16.3 metres, a beam of 5.1 metres, a draught of 1.4 metres, and seating for two crewmembers and eight passengers/pilots. Despite having the same overall dimensions as its earlier sister, Pilot 24 has a slightly greater capacity, being able to accommodate one additional crewmember and two additional passengers/pilots.

Photo: Kewatec Aluboat

The boat possesses self-righting ability and is equipped with a suspension-mounted wheelhouse for reduced noise and vibration. The wheelhouse has heated windows and Grammer Air shock-mitigating seats with folding armrests for the 10 occupants. Below deck are a separate galley and berths for the crew.

Photo: Kewatec Aluboat

The wheelhouse itself was designed to promote enhanced ergonomics, ensuring a safe working interior environment even during days of rough weather. Even the engine room and the equipment spaces were engineered with improved serviceability in mind, having been designed to allow people to stand fully upright while within for greater convenience during maintenance and repair. These attributes make the boat suitable for regular heavy use even under the most difficult weather and sea conditions off Poland’s Baltic coast.

Two Caterpillar C18 412kW inboard diesel engines driving CJR fixed-pitch propellers via ZF 500 gearboxes deliver a maximum speed of 26 knots and cruising speeds of between 21 and 22 knots. The total fuel tankage of 2,000 litres allows for extended operations under a broad range of sea conditions. Auxiliary power is meanwhile provided by an Onan 6kW diesel engine.

Photo: Kewatec Aluboat

The comprehensive suite of navigation electronics was supplied by Furuno while Cobham Sailor provided the communications equipment. The boat also comes equipped with LED searchlights from Seamatz and a gyrostabilised IR camera to permit operations under low-visibility conditions to be performed with greater safety. Jotun paint was used for the exterior.

Photo: Kewatec Aluboat

Viking Life-Saving Equipment supplied the pilot boat’s liferafts, which are to be automatically deployed. As with sister boat Pilot 23, there is also a dedicated davit with cradle for man overboard recovery.

The design work on Pilot 24 was done in compliance to Polish Register of Shipping rules.

Photo: Kewatec Aluboat

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Pilot 24
Type of vessel:Pilot boat
Classification:Polish Register of Shipping
Owner:Gdansk Pilot, Poland
Builder:Kewatec Aluboat, Finland
Hull construction material:Aluminium
Superstructure construction material:Aluminium
Deck construction material:Aluminium
Length overall:16.3 metres
Beam:5.1 metres
Draught:1.4 metres
Main engines:2 x Caterpillar C18 inboards, each 412 kW
Gearboxes:2 x ZF 500
Propulsion:2 x CJR fixed-pitch propellers
Auxiliary engine:Onan, 6 kW
Maximum speed:26 knots
Cruising speed:21 knots
Electronics supplied by:Furuno
Seating:Grammer Air
Searchlights:2 x Seematz
Liferaft:Viking Life-Saving Equipment
Type of fuel:Diesel
Fuel capacity:2,000 litres
Freshwater capacity:170 litres
Sewage/blackwater capacity:170 litres

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