When the stern tube bearing on the 490′ x 75′ container ship M/V Marine Rickmers began to fail, South Africa-based Elgin Brown & Hamer (EBH South Africa) replaced it with state-of-the-art, pollution-free Vesconite. The innovative self-lubricating polymer is far superior to oil-lubricated lignum vitae, white metal and composite bearings, especially with the implementation of ever more stringent environmental regulations.
Vesconite doesn’t swell in water and machines to +/-0.001″, so tight tolerances are always ensured. It has high compression strength and dimensional stability, and no stick-slip. Long-lived, it delivers up to ten times the useable life of bronze, even in dirty, silty harbor water.
The bush for the Marine Rickmers is 500mm x 422mm x 600mm long, but Vesconite can supply environmentally sound 1,300mm and longer stern tube bearings. The polymer is ISO 9001 accredited and bears type approval certifications from ABS, Bureau Veritas, China Corporation Register of Shipping, DNV GL, Korean Register of Shipping and Lloyds Register.
“The shipping industry is getting greener every day,” said Eddie Swanepoel, Vesconite technical sales consultant. “Converting from an oil lubrication system to self-lubricating Vesconite makes environmental sense.”