AUGUST 23, 2018 — As the owner and operator of Vidalia Dock & Storage, Carla Jenkins proudly carries on a family tradition of a business started by her father in 1956. Vidalia Dock & Storage located in Vidalia, LA. provides tug services, and fleeting space for 100 barges, boat/ barge dry dock capability as well as limestone sales. Jenkins relies on engine distributor Laborde Products,Inc., Covington, LA, to keep her fleet running reliably.
When it came to repowering the towboat Sonny J., Vidalia Dock knew right where to go. Acquired in early 2018, the Sonny J. was powered by two 600 hp Cummins K19 main diesel engines. With the goal of EPA Tier compliance and engine reliability, Laborde Products provided two fully mechanical Mitsubishi S6R-Y3MPTAW Tier III engines for the 65 ft x 24 ft vessel. The Mitsubishi engines are rated 684 hp at 1,800 rev/min each with Twin Disc 7:1 transmissions.
The repower was performed by 363 Dry Dock, a subsidiary of Vidalia Dock, and overseen by their port engineer Albert Smith. With a similar footprint, the 24.5-liter Mitsubishi engine was able to replace the 19-liter engine with ease and reused most of the vessel systems including the transmissions.
After a successful commissioning and inaugural inspection run around Vidalia’s fleeting space, vessel owner Carla Jenkins says of the Sonny J., “This boat is a real beast, the Mitsubishi engines are the smoothest running engines I’ve ever experienced.”