Bender Shipyard Builds Own Floating Drydock

Bender Shipbuilding and Repair Co., Mobile, Ala., has begun construction of a large floating drydock which will expand the yard's ship repair capabilities. The drydock will be able to handle ships up to 700 feet long and 20,000 deadweight tons.

The drydock has been designed in self-sufficient sections, each 100 feet long, making construction feasible for the yard, and allowing the dock to be divided to handle smaller ships. It will sit on a 26-acre site on the east side of the river, with a 40-foot depth in the channel.

The yard recently acquired an 8,000-ton floating dock from the U.S. Navy for repairs to small vessels. Deck and engine repairs are carried out on many of the ships which visit Mobile, and the new drydock will enable the yard to handle a full range of repair and maintenance work.

Building work at the yard continues, but emphasis is moving from fishing vessels to oil-related vessels. The yard is currently completing the last of an order for four shrimp boats destined for Japan. Six 22.5-foot tuna boats are also under construction for Mexico. Following these is a 112-foot utility boat and four 185-foot supply vessels for the State Boat Corporation.

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