Found this article on Coral, I would think a lot of cruisers would like to get a look at this new ship:
CORAL PRINCESS Finally Delivered
December 21: It was reported that after urgent and hectic last minute discussions, the CORAL PRINCESS was delivered to P&O Princess Cruises and may soon sail from the Saint-Nazaire shipyard, weather permitting. Allegedly, upon completion of an unprecedented seventh sea trial, she was handed over by Chantiers d'Atlantique. A further drydocking may be necessary to improve a problem with "rudder torque".
A further drydocking may be necessary to improve a problem with "rudder torque".
This does not exactly sound like the sort of shipbuilding performance that one expects from a yard that wants more business and favorable recommendatoins from the same customer.
Then again, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries of Japan has not done much better. Small fires do occur frequently in a shipyard environment, where heat sources from one shop's work (welding, etc.) can inadvetently ignite combustible materials from another shop's work nearby, so competent shipyards train their personnel to be vigilant and to report fires promptly, and they have personnel on hand to respond quickly -- before fires can rage out of control. There's absolutely no excuse for a fire essentially destroying 75% of a vessel that's under construction....
Something tells me that P&O Princess Cruises Plc. may well go back to Fincantieri for future shipbuilding -- that is, if shareholders reject the merger.
You know as much as I do. Since these ships can transit the Atlantic in about a week, though, the fact that she was still in France as of a couple days ago is not a major issue. She probably needed a day or two to load out supplies for the transit and perhaps for some "fast cruise" training for the crew before getting underway. Weather forecasts for the transit, availabilty of berthing in Fort Lauderdale, and security restrictions related to her arrival in Fort Lauderdale also might have caused some delay.
Rudder torque? The ship has no rudder, as far as I know.
AFAIK, P&O Princess Cruises Plc. (LSE: POC), the parent of Princess Cruises, has not bought into the "azipod" design that has plagued vessels of several other lines. I believe that all of the new Princess vessels have conventional shaft-mounted screws (propellers) and rudders, so the drive motors (electric) are within the hull.
Basically, the conventional design puts a rudder directly behind each screw to deflect the stream of water behind it, amplifying the effective flow over the rudders and the consequent steering effect. Thus, a "tiwn screw" vessel ordinarily has two rudders. The only negative aspect of this arrangement is that it does put a rather large torque on the rudder shafts (susceptable to bending) and the rudder shaft bearings (susceptable to crushing). Nonetheless, this torque is substantially less than that of the "azipod" design because it is less than the full propulsive force of the screws, borne instead by the main thrust bearings on the front of the shaft. The parameters for the conventional design -- which has been pretty universal for over a century -- are pretty well known in the shipbuilding industry, so there's no excuse for not getting it right.
Someone had posted earlier that she had a stabilization problem ... what gives here? Norm, we need you, please.
Unfortunately, the explanation of the delays in the company's press release (url]http://www.princess.com/news/article.jsp?newsArticleId=na555[/url]) says only that "the ship needs further work" -- which could mean just about anything. I have no inside information whatsoever on this.
Krooze-cam also shows that the ship was built in Italy ... we could only wish!
This clearly is misinformation. All information from the company, including the press release above, says that the shipbuilder is Chantiers de l'Atlantique -- a shipyard located in St. Nazarre, France.
Any word on whether the Coral will sail on Jan. 3? When do you think we'll know?
As of right now, the cruise scheduled for 03 January is still "on" -- and Princess does have an outstanding track record of launching new ships smoothly. IIRC, this is the first time in at least a decade that Princess has cancelled an inaugural cruise (not counting MV Diamond Princess, which sustained a fire in the shipyard within about a month of publication of her intended inaugural schedule).
It would be naive to deny that there is a possibility that the problems that forced seven attempts of sea trials and cancellation of her first two scheduled cruises could recur during her current transit to Fort Lauderdale. Unfortunately, we probably won't know the consequences, if such a recurrence occurs, until engineers from the shipyard have a chance to look at the problem after the ship's arrival in Fort Lauderdale. Thus, there probably won't be much notice if a cancellation becomes necessary. Of course, we all hope that the engineers succeeded in solving the problems and that her 03 January 2003 cruise will proceed as planned.
Been watching the krooz cam for the coral....it must be stuck...same picture all day yesterday and again today...hope that isn't a bad sign...lol....we are taking the sister ship, the Island, this summer...would love a critique of the Coral from someone on it's maiden voyage.