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jonno

Stena to lengthen Visentini's.

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News is courtesy of Shippax...

 Stena Line has decided to go ahead with the 36-metre lengthening of the 2005-built Visentini Class STENA LAGAN and STENA MERSEY, bringing the capacities of the pair close to that of its own E-Flexer Class under construction at the AVIC Weihai Shipyard in China.

When completed, the lengthened STENA MERSEY and STENA LAGAN will not return to the Birkenhead (Liverpool)-Belfast route as Stena Line will meanwhile have introduced the E-Flexer Class STENA EDDA and STENA EMBLA on the route. Stena Line has not made any announcement as to the future employment of the lengthened Visentinis.

A contract between Stena RoRo, on behalf of Stena Line, and Sedef Shipbuilding was already signed on 29 March this year, but has only been made official now. STENA LAGAN is the first vessel to leave the Birkenhead-Belfast service for her lengthening. Once STENA LAGAN has been re-delivered, STENA MERSEY will enter the yard. The project will be completed during 2020.

The ships' lengths will be increased to 222.6 metres and the primary aim is to lift the freight and car intakes. The freight lanemetre capacity will be increased from 2,238 to 2,875 lanemetres and the number of cars on the dedicated car decks from 170 to 280. The maximum passenger capacity of 970 will remain unchanged, yet 74 cabins will be added, bringing the total to 194. This compares to 3,100 lanemetres, 120 cars (on a separate car deck), 1,000 passengers and crew, and 175 cabins for a standard E-Flexer.

The pair is currently stern-only loading and there were some concerns whether or not the 'Flex Bow' would allow for a conversion to drive-through mode, but thanks to Stena RoRo's 'can-do' philosophy the ships will emerge as double-deck drive-through vessels post lengthening with the stern ramp to be modified from wire to hydraulic lifting.

To comply with the global 0.5% sulphur cap, Stena Line's vessels in the Irish Sea will switch to low sulphur content fuel as of 1 January next year and Stena decided to not install scrubbers on STENA LAGAN and STENA MERSEY when they are in Turkey for their rebuild.

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While they are at it why don't they improve the angle of those ramps to get cars up to the top? At the moment (as with ETRETAT) it is quite hair-raising going up that ramp, particularly as there is usually a smell of burning clutches in the air ....

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5 minutes ago, Ryan_H said:

I wonder which route(s) they could/would deploy them on after they have been lengthened?

The article mentions double deck loading, could that indicate Stena are planning to use them in UK waters. I’m not aware of it being used extensively anywhere else, certainly not in the Med.

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17 minutes ago, nick hall said:

The article mentions double deck loading, could that indicate Stena are planning to use them in UK waters. I’m not aware of it being used extensively anywhere else, certainly not in the Med.

Would a Roslare to Le Havre (or Cherbourg) service be an option? Given their new length it somewhat limits the choice of ports. Ed. 

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Plus the due to not having scrubbers installed  it narrows down the options of what routes they can service .

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22 minutes ago, Chef said:

Plus the due to not having scrubbers installed  it narrows down the options of what routes they can service .

How can BF operate to Portsmouth then if there are no Srubbers and no LNG in use yet? 

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Like Geest Line as well who have just been welcomed by Portsmouth with an increase in visits by their vessels on a new 5 year contract

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1 hour ago, Chef said:

Plus the due to not having scrubbers installed  it narrows down the options of what routes they can service .

They'll be running them on low sulphur diesel which is already emission compliant and is cleaner than petrol due to the DPF's.

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15 minutes ago, Paully said:

Like Geest Line as well who have just been welcomed by Portsmouth with an increase in visits by their vessels on a new 5 year contract

Makes sense. It would be bananas to fit expensive, and space consuming, scrubbers to a ship that probably spends less that 5% of her life in the English Channel area. Ed. 

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On 11/09/2019 at 12:55, nick hall said:

The article mentions double deck loading, could that indicate Stena are planning to use them in UK waters. I’m not aware of it being used extensively anywhere else, certainly not in the Med.

Having these as bow and stern double deck loaders will certainly increase these vessels versatility and considerably reduce turnaround times. I’m sure other operators will be following this closely, to see if it’s worthwhile converting their own Vinsentini’s (though Stena do seem to own the majority now!). 

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2 hours ago, Andy said:

(though Stena do seem to own the majority now!

I note that the Etretat and Connemara changed ownership to a Chinese company (Xiang), however that could just be a financing arangement, the AF MICHELA is still owned by Stena,

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