Trailerable 'Kelpie' takes to the high road
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) has recently taken delivery of their new survey vessel Kelpie. Built by Cheetah Marine, Kelpie is based on the successful Cheetah 7.9m catamaran hull.
The specification is both detailed and demanding, particularly when a weight limit of 2.5 tons for the fitted out boat is necessary. SEPA chose the long wheelhouse version of the Cheetah 7.9m for the stability, economy and for its space efficiency. Also, the boat draws only 30 to 35 cms and will thus be able to work in shallow water.
Power comes from a pair of Honda 90hp engines providing not only excellent fuel economy but 40 amps from each engine to add to the 2kva output from the portable Honda generator.
A 5.5hp Spencer Carter winch fitted with 100m of 4mm wire working through a stainless steel swinging davit will be used in conjunction with a day grab for sediment sampling. SEPA will also be using the boat for collecting water samples and multibeam and ADCP work, again deploying instruments from the starboard side davit.
Hugh Anderson, skipper of Kelpie said, ‘We had seen several other Cheetah Survey Catamarans working along the west coast and had been very impressed with their build quality and reputation. The seakeeping qualities of such a compact vessel are very impressive.'
The boat and all the fittings including stainless steel rails all round complies with MCA coding. Electronics are comprehensive and include a Raymarine C120 colour multifunction display, 2 kw 18' Raydome, DSM 300 high definition fish imaging/sounder module, DGPS Raystar 125 satellite receiver and a DSC VHF.
Twin engine hydraulic steering is by Hydrive from Southern Cross. All the stainless steel work is carried out in house. Kelpie will be towed between sites on a triple axle, disc braked, auto reverse trailer.
Work has started on a new Cheetah Marine fit out facility opposite Ventnor Haven. Finished boats will shortly be moved out of the factory and straight into the water for sea trials and testing of specialised hydrographic equipment. Sean Strevens said 'The 7.9m has been very successful in the marine survey field. With interest growing in our new 10.2m Cheetah we are able to offer more space and overnight facilities for surveying many miles from base.'
Currently in build is the new 10.2m Cheetah Ocean Potion, complete with flybridge and powered by twin 350hp Yamaha outboard engines. Ocean Potion will be the latest addition to Cheetah’s Remote Location Series and will be servicing a remote island off of the west coast of Ireland.
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